Search Results: history

3 Healthcare Tools To Manage Patient Medications

ID-10022007Oral medications for the treatment chronic conditions have seen unprecedented growth in recent times. Patients with chronic/life threatening conditions are dosing on multiple medicines each day to reduce symptoms–but without tracking medication times or following a particular routine. This is especially difficult for the patients who see multiple doctors.

Dealing with multiple medications can indeed be a confusing process, for patients as well as medical professionals. Following a blatant pattern can also lead to increased health risks for the patient. Medical professionals therefore need to adopt a proactive approach to assist patients in managing their medications.

The confusion can also lead to harmful medicine interactions. It has been estimated by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists that above 34% senior citizens have received a prescription from more than a single physician, and 72% of them are using medicines that were received as prescriptions 6 months ago.

Moreover, several patients have jumped on the ‘pharmacy shopping’ bandwagon as they are considering it to be a frugal approach towards healthcare. The ALARIS Center for Medication Safety and Clinical Improvement reveals that errors in medication administration have resulted in 7,000 deaths a year. The statistics make the problem of medication management apparent.

Thankfully, due to the recent advancements in the domain of health care, medical professionals can utilize certain tools to manage patient medications. Read more…

Posted by - November 30, 2013 at 1:22 pm

Categories: General   Tags:

Egyptian Medicine to the Rescue: Aspirin

ID-10073271Aspirin has long been used for pain relief and combating against headaches. This simple little pill has worked wonders by providing millions of people all over the world with relief from common everyday symptoms. What doctors are discovering more and more, however, and what most people are just beginning to realize, is that aspirin is capable of so much more than pain relief. From heart attacks to cancer, it seems as though there is almost nothing that aspirin cannot help to prevent. And the history of aspirin is just as surprising, as it goes back thousands of years all the way to the Ancient Egyptians. This article will look at how those Egyptians first used a form of aspirin, and what aspirin can do for millions of people today.

An ancient form of medicine

Many people assume that aspirin is the result of 20th-century laboratories and scientific research. While it is certainly true that modern day aspirin was born more in the lab than anywhere else, the active ingredient in aspirin goes much further back than the 20th-century. In fact, historians have learned that the Ancient Egyptians were using willow bark in order to treat many of the same symptoms that people use aspirin for today. The use of willow bark was not based on ancient superstition; rather, it contained the same active ingredient that aspirin contains today, meaning the Ancient Egyptians were thousands of years ahead of their time when it came to medical treatment. Read more…

Posted by - September 26, 2013 at 11:40 am

Categories: Health Information   Tags:

When You Should Get Help For Mental Health Issues

ID-10076342Many people who have mental health issues don’t realize that they do or are in denial. As a result, they do not get the help they need. They settle for a lesser quality of life—not feeling happy, not having good relationships, not enjoying life. This is unfortunate because no one has to live that way.

If you suspect you might have a mental health issue, care about yourself enough to seek help. It might feel scary, but getting help is the key to helping you become healthy.

Some signs you might want to seek help include:

·  Feeling like you are on an emotional roller coaster

·  Use of recreational drugs or alcohol to assuage your troubles

·  Having suicidal thoughts or feeling hopeless

·  Feeling anxious or worrying all the time

·  Having trouble going to sleep or staying asleep

·  Feeling depressed

·  A change in appetite, or rapid weight loss or gain

·  Being overly emotional or experiencing big mood swings

·  Having difficulty concentrating

You can also complete an anonymous online survey here to screen yourself for potential disorders. Your friends or family, people who love and care about you, may have suggested that you get some help. If these are people you trust you should consider their concerns and that something may be wrong. Read more…

Posted by - April 18, 2013 at 11:48 am

Categories: Health Information   Tags:

What are the Functions of Fats/Lipids?

Fats are foods that provide us with calories and they are always equated with calories due to their high calorie yielding capability per gram in compare to other major nutrients, i.e. carbohydrates and proteins. Fats are high energy foods and provide us as much as 9 kcal (kilocalorie) of energy per gram, which is much higher than proteins (4 kcal) and carbohydrates (4 kcal). Due to high calorie yielding capability our body uses fats as energy storehouse (stored as fats in adipose tissues), to be used during lean period. This is how our human body evolved during time of evolution to overcome short lean periods. ID-10051758

The functions of fats can be summarized as:

  • Fats supply high calorie and spare the proteins for being used as source of energy.
  • Fats act as a vehicle for fat soluble vitamins (vitamin A, D, E & K).
  • Fats in the body support important viscera like heart, kidney, intestine etc. and fats beneath the skin (subcutaneous fat) provide insulation against cold.
  • Essential fatty acids (EFA) are required for our body growth, for structural integrity of cell membrane and to reduce platelet adhesion (important in preventing heart attacks). Essential fatty acids also reduce cholesterol and low density lipoproteins (LDL). Read more…

Posted by - March 9, 2013 at 2:14 am

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What is Premenstrual Tension?

Some women experience certain premenstrual symptoms called premenstrual tension about 7-10 days before the start of menstrual bleeding. These premenstrual symptoms include irritability, malaise, lassitude, headache, gastrointestinal upset like constipation and spasm of colon, feeling of fullness of the breasts and abdomen, frequency of urination etc. There may also be feeling of congestion in the feet and face. In some women these symptoms become exaggerated and form a well marked psychosomatic disorder.

In some of the cases of premenstrual tension water retention can be demonstrated by an increase of body weight up to 5 kilos which is accompanied by pedal edema. This is more marked if the patient has history of phlebothrombosis. The fullness of breasts can be prominent symptom and can be accompanied by breast tenderness. On examination of breasts, there is hardness and lumpy feeling and there is also tenderness. Some women with premenstrual tension suffer from migraine headache which disappear if the woman become pregnant.

The cause or etiology of premenstrual tension is not clear. It is suggested (but not proved) that premenstrual tension may be due to excess production of estrogen and abnormal or disturbance in adrenal function, because there is always an increase of extra-cellular water throughout the body. This is because estrogen is recognized to cause water and sodium retention as seen in carcinoma of prostate, where there is excess production of estrogen. But presence of large amount of estrogen does not always produce water retention as seen in granulosa cell tumor. Adrenal cortical steroids and progesterone (progesterone containing oral contraceptive pills may are well known for their water retention properties) can also cause water retention, so it may not be always due to estrogen excess.

Posted by - July 23, 2012 at 12:27 am

Categories: Health Information, Women's Health   Tags:

Know about Infrequent and Scanty Menstruation

Infrequent menstruation:

It is a condition where intermenstrual cycle is prolonged to more than normal 28 days. But some women have a perfectly normal menstrual cycle at 35 days, without any problem because their fertility is intact and that is why it can not be considered as pathological.

Infrequent menstruation should be diagnosed only if the menstrual cycle is erratic and unduly prolonged and some times it prolonged to three months to four months or longer. This situation is most commonly seen at the time of menarche (first menstruation) or at the time of menopause and which can be regarded as modified amenorrhea. But normal reproductive capacity is possible within this infrequent menstrual cycle and infrequent ovulation.

In the pathological variety of infrequent menstruation the causes and finding on clinical and investigational findings are to some extent similar to amenorrhea and patient is usually obese, poorly developed secondary sexual characters, hirsute, and hypoplasia of genitals. And the most common finding in the investigation of these types of patients is subnormal functioning of ovaries.

Scanty menstruation:

In some women the menstruation lasts for only a day or two and the blood loss is also very less and require changing of diapers of only one or two. Scanty menstruation that occurs regularly is not pathological and they are not infertile as the regularity of menstruation proves normal pituitary ovarian cycle. So if a patient of scanty menstruation has normal secondary sex characters it can be considered normal and no treatment is required, other than reassurance. If scanty menstruation is accompanied by irregular menstruation, it is suggestive of primary or secondary ovarian sub function. Depending on the history of menstruation, the primary or secondary ovarian disorder can be determined (if from the beginning the menstruation is irregular and scanty, it is due to primary ovarian disorder and if it starts later it is secondary cause). If the menstruation become suddenly erratic and scanty or no loss, it is suggestive of premature menopause. Then the treatment is same as primary and secondary amenorrhea. The patient and relatives should be convinced on this to the point of their satisfaction.

Posted by - June 15, 2012 at 12:27 am

Categories: Health Information   Tags:

Travel During Pregnancy

Travel during pregnancy is a great concern for the pregnant woman. Before starting travel many important aspects should be considered. A woman’s medical history and itinerary, the quality of medical care at her destination, and her degree of flexibility should be the determining factors for travel during pregnancy. The safest part of pregnancy in which to travel can be done is between 18 and 24 weeks, when there is the least danger of spontaneous abortion and also premature labor, according to the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology. Many obstetricians prefer that women should stay within a few hundred miles of home after the 28th week of pregnancy. But in general there is no danger in travel during pregnancy if the pregnant woman is healthy.

Travel should be avoided during pregnancy if there is a history of miscarriage, premature labor, incompetent cervix, or toxemia. Travel should also be avoided if there are general medical conditions like diabetes, heart failure, severe anemia, or a history of thrombo-embolic disease in pregnant woman. Pregnant women should not go to a place where there is excessive risk to the growing fetus as well as to the pregnant woman like those at high altitudes and those where live-virus vaccines are required or where multi drug-resistant malaria is endemic.

Pregnant women should be very cautious about traveler’s diarrhea during travel. Dehydration due to travelers’ diarrhea can lead to inadequate placental blood flow and lead to hypoxia and growth retardation to the fetus. The dehydration of traveler’s diarrhea should be promptly corrected by adequate fluid replacement.

Air travel is not risky to the healthy pregnant woman or to the fetus. The higher radiation levels reported at altitudes of more than 10,500 m (35,000 ft) during air travel also should pose no problem to the healthy pregnant traveler. Each airline has a policy regarding pregnancy and flying and it is best to check with the specific carrier when booking reservations. Domestic air travel is generally permitted till the 36th week of pregnancy, and international air travel is generally permitted till the 31st week of pregnancy.

There are no known risks for pregnant women for travel to high-altitude destinations and stay for short periods but there are no data of safety of pregnant women at altitudes of more than 4500 meter (15,000 ft).

Posted by - May 15, 2012 at 3:57 pm

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Treatment of Nail Fungus Infection

Fungus infects nails and more commonly toe nails (less frequently finger nails). Fungal infection of nails may be very difficult to treat properly for complete cure. Fungal infection of nails (both toe nails and finger nails) begins as a white or yellow spot under the tip of fingernail or toenail. The infected nail/nails may become discolored, thick and have crumbling edges, as the fungal infection spreads to the deeper into nail. The condition may become painful, which prompt most patients to seek medical attention. The infection may also recur after successful treatment, especially if you continue to get exposed to conditions favorable for fungus growth and infection such as warm, moist conditions.

There are several different forms of treatment of fungal infection of nails; including over-the-counter medications antifungal nail creams and ointments, although they are not very effective. Ideally the over-the-counter antifungal medications should be avoided, as they can not be relied upon, for a complete cure.

The antifungal antibiotics are very effective in curing and eliminating the fungal infection of nails, although they can do little to prevent re-infection. The most effective antifungal antibiotics for treatment of fungal infection of nails are terbinafine (available as Lamisil) and itraconazole (available as Sporanox). These antifungal antibiotics are taken orally and highly effective for complete cure.

The oral antifungal antibiotics are used when patient has certain medical conditions such as diabetes mellitus, history of cellulites, or if the infection is severe and unlikely to be cured by topical agents.

Other treatment options in fungal infection of nails include topical medications (if the fungal infection is mild to moderate severity), surgery (for extremely severe and painful conditions) etc.

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Posted by - August 26, 2010 at 11:59 am

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Treatment of Epididymitis

Epididymitis is a sexually transmitted infection in men. Most of the sexually transmitted epididymitis are acute and generally affect only on one side. Epididymitis causes pain, tenderness (pain on pressure to that part), swelling of epididymis and these symptoms may or may not be accompanied by signs and symptoms of urethritis (infection/inflammation of urethra).

What are the causative organisms of acute sexually transmitted epididymitis?

Most commonly the causative organisms of acute sexually transmitted epididymitis is Clamydia trachomatis and less commonly due to N. gonorrhea, especially in case of males below 35 years of age and sexually active.

Other conditions which should be differentiated from acute epididymitis are torsion of testis, trauma or due to tumor. In torsion of testis, which is a surgical emergency there is sudden onset of pain, the testicle is located in the scrotal sac, there is rotation of the epididymis from a posterior to an anterior position. In torsion of testis on Doppler study there is absence of blood flow to the testis. If symptoms do not subside after complete treatment with appropriate antibiotics, it suggests tumor or a granulomatous disease like tuberculosis. In trauma there is history of trauma.

Treatment of epididymitis:

The treatment of choice for acute epididymitis is ceftriaxone 250 mgs single dose intramuscularly followed by doxycycline 100 mg orally two times a day for next 10 days. This regime cures acute epididymitis due to Clamydia trachomatis as well as due to N. gonorrhea. Previously fluoroquinolones like ciprofloxacin were used, but at present not recommended due to emergence of resistance against fluoroquinolones.  Levofloxacin is used sometimes if the causative organism of epididymitis is found to be Enterobacteriaceae, but it is not useful if epididymitis is due to other organisms.

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Posted by - January 25, 2010 at 12:36 am

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Cellulitis is a common clinical problem. Cellulitis is an acute inflammatory condition of the skin, generally caused by infection. The typical characteristic features of Cellulitis are localized pain, erythema (redness), swelling, and heat at the area of inflammation.

Causative agents of Cellulitis:

Cellulitis can be caused by indigenous flora which colonizes the skin and appendages like Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus. Pyogenes. Other species of staphylococcus and streptococcus also cause cellulites. It can also be caused by variety of other exogenous organisms, mainly bacteria like Pseudomonus aeruginosa, Pasteurella multocida (commonly cat bite and less commonly dog bite), Capnocytophaga canimorsus, Eikenella corrodens, Aeromonas hydrophila etc.

Route of entry of causative organism in Cellulitis:

Bacteria generally gain access to the epidermis through cracks in the skin, which is mainly due to abrasions, cuts, burns, insect bites, surgical incisions, and intravenous catheters. Different organisms gain entry by different routes, e.g. cellulitis caused by S. aureus spreads from a central localized infection, like an abscess (folliculitis), or from an infected foreign body like a splinter, a prosthetic device, or an intravenous catheter.

Diagnosis of cellulites:

Due to the involvement of exogenous bacteria in cellulites, a thorough history including epidemiologic data can provides important clues to the infecting organism. Whenever possible, a Gram’s stain and culture of the pus which is collected during drainage can provide a definitive diagnosis. If pus can not be cultured or Gram’s stain can not be done, it is very difficult to establish a diagnosis due to the similarity of the clinical features in staphylococcus and streptococcus cellulitis. Even with needle aspiration of the leading edge or a punch biopsy of the cellulitis tissue itself, cultures are positive in only 20% of cases, which suggest only small numbers of bacteria cause cellulites. The expanding area of redness within the skin may be a direct effect of extra-cellular toxins or due to the soluble mediators of inflammation.

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Posted by - June 25, 2009 at 11:42 pm

Categories: Diseases   Tags:

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