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Showing posts from January, 2017

Dysphagia - Symptoms and Treatment

The danger of swallowing disorders is that they can lead to aspiration pneumonia and poor nutrition . Both conditions contribute to declining health and increased length of hospital stays. Symptoms of difficulty swallowing include: coughing choking food "sticking in the throat" drooling nasal drainage while eating weight loss fever from pneumonia The Diagnosis of Dysphagia When the above symptoms are noted by physicians, nurses or therapy staff, a speech-language pathologist (SLP) is consulted. Patients hospitalized for neurological disorders such as stroke, brain injury, Parkinsonism, or ALS likely are on the SLP caseload. Swallowing requires timely and effective coordination of many muscles. When these do not operate efficiently, ingested substances can enter the airway and endanger patient health. After the referral, an evaluation takes place. The SLP offers different food textures to assess difficulty swallowing them separately. Liquids, pudding, crumbling f

Stye - Symptoms and Treatment

A stye is an infection, typically a bacterial infection, which causes a painful red lump either on the edge or inside of the eyelid. Bacteria grow at the root of an eyelash follicle or inside an oil gland. The bacteria can be a result of poor hygiene, touching the eyes with unwashed hands or chronic inflammation. The stye resembles a pimple or a boil and is usually filled with pus. A stye does not pose a risk to vision and most often heals without treatment within a week. However, a stye may require treatment with a doctor if the infection does not resolve with at-home remedies. Symptoms of a Stye A stye is not usually hard to spot. Not only does a red lump form on either the top or bottom eyelid, but pain is also an immediate symptom of the condition. Typical symptoms of a stye include: red lump on the eyelid similar to a pimple watering of the eye eyelid pain and swelling clear or yellow fluid collecting in the stye A normal stye will come to a head in approximately three to

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome - Symptoms and Treatment

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS) is a work-related musculoskeletal disorder often known as a compression neuropathy of the median nerve that passes through the carpal tunnel. Based on clinical symptoms and nerve conduction tests conducted among the general population, CTS is 3.0-5.8% prevalent among women and 0.6-2.1% among men. It is generally believed that CTS is caused when the pressure in the carpal tunnel increases. In recent years, those who use computers in the long run are reported to be the victims of this syndrome. Symptoms of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome When the disease is in the initial stage, patients report about the involvement of the sensory component of the median nerve. Only when the disease progresses, patients report symptoms linked with the motor fibers. The widely experienced symptom is the burning sensation along with tingling and numbness in the distribution of median nerve distal to wrist. The parts involved in the symptoms are the thumb, middle finger, index finger

Recognizing PTSD Symptoms in a Loved One

The process begins with awareness. Although information about PTSD is readily available on the web, many people have never heard of the disorder. Therefore, it is not uncommon for PTSD sufferers to live with the condition years before they are properly diagnosed by a physician. An awareness of the fact that traumatic experiences can trigger a psychological disorder is enough to cause friends, family, and trauma victims to want to educate themselves. How to Identify PTSD Symptoms Education is the second most important step in the process toward healing from PTSD and it begins with learning about the symptoms. The United States Department of Veteran Affairs developed the National Center for PTSD as a resource for veterans and the general public. Four of the most commonly recognized symptoms described in their pamphlet, “What is PTSD?” include the following: Hyperarousal – The feeling of being on constant edge, as if something bad is about to happen. Reliving the trauma – Reliving c

Pick's Disease – a Condition Similar to Dementia

Pick’s disease , characterized by loss of brain function, is similar to dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. However, it is rarer and tends to affect only certain areas of the brain. In Pick’s disease, the damaged areas of the brain have abnormal substances called pick bodies and pick cells. All cells normally contain a type of protein called tau. But, many Pick cells have an abnormal amount or type of tau. The cause of Pick’s disease is unknown. The disease can occur in both men and women but is more common in women. It can affect a person in early adulthood but usually begins in middle aged to older adults. Pick’s disease can slowly progress and over time, temporal and frontal lobe tissues of the brain will shrink. This disease causes changes in behavior, neurological processes, communication skills, and emotions and affects just about all aspects of normal daily activities. It is the difference in symptoms, particularly behavior problems that distinguishes Pick’s disease from A

Recognising Listeria

Listeria has been found in up to five percent or more of normal healthy people usually in the gut. For this reason, exposure to this bacterium is unavoidable. The bacterium can grow at temperatures as low as 0°C. Diseases Caused By Listeria L. monocytogenes can cause a variety of diseases, including infections in pregnancy ranging from a mild chill to a severe illness which may precipitate premature birth or miscarriage, and meningitis in newborn children. Septicaemia and meningitis occurs in adults whose immunity to infection is impaired, such as those suffering from cancer or leukaemia or transplant patients. Infection does occur in otherwise healthy adults and children although this is extremely rare. The infection may be treated with antibiotics but in about one third of cases the disease is fatal. There is no vaccine available to help prevent this infection. Although the Listeria organism is common in the environment it is a relatively rare cause of infection and commonly

Radiation Sickness

Radiation injury occurs when ionizing radiation directly damages cellular RNA, DNA, or proteins, or when highly reactive free radicals are generated within cells and tissues. Large doses of ionizing radiation cause cell death, while lower doses interfere with cellular proliferation. Chromosomal damage can result in malignant transformation or inheritable genetic defects. On September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on US soil raised concerns about the repetition of similar activities, including attacks on nuclear facilities or the use of nuclear devices. The detonation of a “ dirty bomb ” (a conventional weapon designed to scatter radioactive material) could expose a large number of citizens to high levels of radiation. The extent of tissue damage caused by radiation depends on the source and duration of exposure. The majority of acute radiation syndromes are caused by gamma rays and x-rays because these forms of radiation can cause damage at great distances from their s

Respiratory Disorders – Croup

When an adult has cardiac related issues, there are numerous factors that may have been the cause. Heart disease, high cholesterol, obesity and high blood pressure, can all contribute to emergency cardiac incidents. In children and infants whose hearts are typically young and strong, a cardiac event is troubling because it is unexpected. Most cardiac arrests in the very young can be attributed to an alternate cause that is usually respiration related, like croup. What is Croup? Croup sounds awful. The seal bark cough (stridor) and wheezing, sets parents on high alert. It is an alarming medical event that causes anxiety and restlessness for infant and caregiver alike. The medical name for croup is laryngotracheobronchitis and it occurs when the voice box (larynx), the windpipe (trachea), and the bronchi (pathways to the lungs) become inflamed. This inflammation causes the airway to partially swell, leading to the characteristic barking cough associated with croup. Predominently cau

Redefining Depression and Medicalizing Sadness

“And if ever, by some unlucky chance, anything unpleasant should somehow happen, why, there's always soma to give you a holiday from the facts. And there's always soma to calm your anger, to reconcile you to your enemies, to make you patient and long-suffering. In the past you could only accomplish these things by making a great effort and after years of hard moral training. Now, you swallow two or three half-gramme tablets, and there you are. Anybody can be virtuous now. You can carry at least half your mortality about in a bottle. Christianity without tears -- that's what soma is.” -- Aldous Huxley, Brave New World Sadness is an inevitable occurrence in the span of our transient lives. However, many cultures throughout history have recognized that some people are inexplicably stricken with a persistent despair that has no particular cause or that is not proportional to the loss suffered. This condition is what we know today as depression. However, as Horwitz and