Slipped Femoral Epiphysis

There is a wide range of different effects resulting from obesity which can affect the physical well-being of both adults and children. Key examples of obesity-related health conditions include gallbladder disease, heart disease, type2 diabetes and slipped femoral epiphysis. The latter condition is associated with the position of the ball in the hip joint moving and thus causing significant pain for those affected.

slipped femoral epiphysis

Understanding Slipped Femoral Epiphysis

Slipped femoral epiphysis is a health condition arising from carrying excessive amounts of weight, with boys between the ages of ten and 16 being the most likely to be affected. The condition is caused by weakness of the joint between the thigh bone and ball joint, allowing the ball to slip and resulting in the child's leg appearing bowed. Chronic femoral epiphysis may also occur when the slip develops at a slower rate. This typically results in children suffering from post-exercise pain in the groin area (which dissipates following a period of rest) and may even cause a limp or result in one leg becoming shorter than the other.

A sudden acute slip is far more rare and usually results in the child suffering from a high level of pain and finding it rather difficult to even walk. This is normally caused by a gradual weakening of the ball joint and children may also complain of having knee pain due to the nerves supplying the knee being the same as those supplying the hip joint.

How Childhood Obesity Affects Femoral Epiphysis

Obesity is directly linked to the condition of slipped femoral epiphysis because these slips or weakening within the ball of the hip joint stem from too much stress being placed upon them. This high level of stress on the joint is identified as being caused by the excessive amount of weight children who are suffering from obesity have on their small frame. In addition, as the joint is not designed to bear such a heavy load, the growth plate eventually becomes considerably weakened and typically requiring specialist treatment.

As a result of this direct link to obesity, it is crucial for parents to encourage overweight children to become more active and alter their dietary intake in order to avoid the likelihood of them suffering from this painful condition or indeed many other forms of obesity-related illness.

Treatment for Slipped Femoral Epiphysis

Slipped femoral epiphysis usually requires children to be admitted into hospital for treatment, which involves being in traction, weights and normally surgical procedures. As any form of surgery is more dangerous when performed on an obese person, there are added risks involved which must be understood. Surgery is often minor and involves the epiphysis being pinned whilst under general anaesthetic with a few small incisions. However, in more severe cases where the joint and plate has become greatly deformed the surgery may take considerably longer and involve a larger incision thus increasing any risks.

Children will usually remain in hospital for around one week post-surgery and then spend up to six weeks on crutches. Following discharge, regular appointments including X-rays will typically be necessary whilst the child is still growing.

As highlighted above, slipped femoral epiphysis involves the ball of the hip joint moving out of place causing significant pain as a result of the body struggling to carry the stress of excess weight, The condition usually requires surgery and is most common in boys of secondary school age.

Source

:
Heaton-Harris, N. (2009) Childrens Health - Combating Obesity Brighton: Emerald Publishing

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Understanding Osler-Weber-Rendu Syndrome

osler weber rendu syndrome
Olser-Weber-Rendu syndrome (OWR), also known as Hereditary Hemorrhagic Telangiectasia (HHT), is an inherited condition affecting the blood vessels. It affects approximately one person out of 10,000, or about 1.2 million people throughout the world.

Causes of Osler-Weber-Rendu Syndrome

Olser-Weber-Rendu syndrome is a genetic disorder caused by an abnormality in either the endoglin gene (ENG) on chromosome 9, or the activin receptor-like kinase 1 gene (ALK1) on chromosome 12. Both of these genes are involved in blood vessel formation. A mutation in either of these genes will result in similar OWR symptoms, and those who have the disorder generally only have an abnormality in one of the genes.

OWR syndrome has an autosomal dominant pattern of inheritance, meaning only one copy of the abnormal gene is necessary to cause the disease and to pass it on. Each child of an individual who has the disorder has a 50% chance of inheriting it. The vast majority of those affected have a family history of the disorder.

Symptoms of Osler-Weber-Rendu Syndrome

Most symptoms of OWR syndrome are due to abnormal formation of capillaries, tiny vessels that normally connect arteries to veins. Abnormalities in capillary formation cause defects known as arteriovenous malformations (AVMs), fragile areas in the vessels that can easily rupture. AVMs may occur on the surface of the skin or in the lungs, brain, liver, stomach or gastrointestinal tract. Symptoms often begin to appear in affected people when they are between ten and twenty years old, and increase with age. Individuals with OWR will not necessarily have all of these symptoms.

  • Telangiectasias are small AVMs that may appear on the skin as red spots on the face, hands, lips, or inside the mouth. They may bleed spontaneously or from minor trauma.
  • Nosebleeds (epistaxis) usually begin to appear around 12 years of age, and are due to telangiectasias in the nose.
  • Anemia can be caused by blood loss from frequent nosebleeds or bleeding from AVMs elsewhere in the body.
  • Pulmonary AVMs cause bleeding in the lungs, increase the risk of bacterial infections by interfering with normal filtering processes, and cause low blood oxygen levels, migraine headaches, and can possibly lead to stroke.
  • Brain AVMs can cause headaches, seizures, paralysis or stroke.
  • Liver AVMs can interfere with normal circulation of the blood and lead to increased risk of heart failure.
  • Gastrointestinal AVMs can cause significant loss of blood, leading to anemia.

Diagnosis and Treatment of Osler-Weber-Rendu Syndrome

OWR syndrome is usually diagnosed by observation of symptoms such as frequent nosebleeds and telangiectasias, and whether there is a family history of the disorder. Blood tests can detect anemia and monitor blood oxygen levels; chest x-rays or EKGs can assess if lungs and heart are normal; ultrasound is used to find AVMs in the stomach or liver; MRIs are used to look for AVMs in the brain. Gastrointestinal bleeding can be detected by stool samples.

Treatment varies depending on the severity of the condition. Mild cases may require little or no treatment. Treatment for more severe symptoms may include iron supplements for anemia or laser therapy to seal telangiectasias. Chronic bleeding from the GI tract may require endoscopy and treatment by laser therapy or cauterization of AVMs. Pulmonary AVMs may be treated with embolization, which is insertion of a tube through a vein in the groin area that is used to place a balloon in the lung to block the bleeding artery. Brain AVMs may be treated by surgery, embolization, or stereotactic radiosurgery, which uses a focused beam of radiation.

Other treatments include hormone therapy with estrogen, or aminocaprioic acid, which improves clotting. In cases of severe blood loss, blood transfusions may be necessary. Many people who have Osler-Weber-Rendu syndrome do not have severe symptoms, and require minimal treatment to manage the condition, but early screening and proper diagnosis are crucial.

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Recovering From Back Surgery – Healing Safely from Back Surgery

back surgery recovery
For a fast and safe recovery from back surgery, patients are given post operative care instructions. A back surgery patient should try to gradually engage in daily activities and religiously take prescribed medications. Once a patient starts to feel better, engaging in strengthening and mobility exercises is the next step.

Recover Fast From Back Surgery by Getting Back in Action

As part of a speedier recovery process, it is important for a back surgery patient to slowly get back into a daily routine. Immersing oneself in activities, even those as simple as getting out of bed without help, is a major step towards full recovery. Here are some more tips to easily get back in action.
  • Get in and out of bed safely without putting pressure on the back. This can be easily done through a log roll – a position where in an individual rolls on his side, swings legs to the floor and lifts the body using the arms.
  • Utilize special tools such as railings, a reacher and elevated seat to assist with day to day actions.
  • When in doubt on whether or not to perform a specific activity, such as driving or going to work, check with a doctor.
  • Refrain from being in one position for long periods of time to avoid cramps and spasms.

Take Prescribed Medication for Fast Back Surgery Recovery

A doctor will prescribe medication for an effective pain management. Do not hesitate to ask questions pertaining to what the medicine is for and length of time it has to be taken. Never wait for pain to be intolerable before taking medication and make sure to take it on time. Also, if an individual has been on medication for a while, it is best to consult with a doctor before stopping medication.

Gain Strength Back After Back Surgery Through Exercising

Exercise programs are usually given after surgery to help a back surgery patient to heal faster. Exercising is also another way to reduce pain. Here are some strengthening exercises to try.
  • Walking – Walking is a great way to maintain the strength and flexibility of the muscles. Start with short walks on flat surfaces for a few minutes. For each day, add a minute or so.
  • Water Aerobics – This type of exercise is great in exercising muscles, while maintaining a minimum stress on the back. The doctor may recommend this exercise as soon as it is determined that the incision is safe to get wet.
  • Other exercises recommended by a physical therapist

Speed Up Back Surgery Recovery by Protecting the Back

Observing good body mechanics when performing day to day activity can speed up the recovery process. It can also prevent back injury in the future.
  • When lifting, follow the recommended weight limit set by the doctor. Also, remember to always lift using the legs and hold the object to be lifted close to the body.
  • Sit with a straight back; no slouching or slumping.
  • Use knees when bending and never bend from the waist.
  • Avoid any form of twisting or bending

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The Difference Between Heat Exhaustion and Heat Stroke

heat exhaustion

Heat exhaustion is caused by the depletion of both water and salt due to excessive sweating during periods of work or exercise. Athletes are particularly prone to heat exhaustion. Heat stroke is an extension of heat exhaustion, and it happens when the body's mechanisms responsible for temperature regulation fail. Both of these conditions should be treated as emergencies. Here's how to recognize when a person is afflicted with heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

How to Recognize and Treat Heat Exhaustion

Heat exhaustion can affect anyone when the weather is hot, indoors or outdoors. Symptoms can begin after prolonged exposure to high temperatures without balancing the loss of electrolytes with adequate fluid intake. Weakness and confusion will follow. Sufferers of heat exhaustion will sweat more heavily than normal, and may have cool and clammy skin.

It's imperative to get the person to a cooler location; preferably an air-conditioned room. Call for medical assistance right away and give water or sports beverages to replace the salt that's been lost. Only allow the person to sip small amounts of liquid at regular intervals of 10 minutes. Remove as much clothing as possible and wrap the limbs with towels that have been drenched with cool water. The victim might complain of a throbbing headache but under no circumstances should pain medications be given.

Symptoms of Heat Stroke and How to Treat the Condition

A dangerously high body temperature of 104°F or 40°C is the main sign of heat stroke. Visible neurological indicators are seizures, difficulty understanding what others are saying, and hallucinations. Sufferers of heat stroke will produce little or no sweat, and the skin will turn bright red because the body tries to dilate blood vessels to try to release heat. What's happening is that the body is turning into an oven. Other symptoms are a rapid pulse, confusion, and unusually aggressive behavior.

It's vital to call emergency medical services immediately because heat stroke can be fatal. Before they arrive, take steps to cool the victim down. Move the person out of direct sunlight to a shady area. If possible, spray the victim with cool water from a hose. Placing ice packs behind the head, under the arms, and on the sides of the chest will help to bring the person's core temperature down. Do not give caffeinated beverages like tea or coffee and never leave the victim unattended.

How to Prevent Heat Exhaustion and Heat Stroke

Heat exhaustion is the early stage of heat stroke. To reduce the likelihood of getting one and possibly both of these conditions, stay hydrated, wear loose clothing that reflects sunlight and take frequent breaks if you must work outside on hot days. Bring another person along in case an emergency does occur. At the first sign of heat exhaustion, all activities must be stopped, fluids must be replenished and the affected person should relax.

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UK Researchers Say Welfare Programme Cuts Affects Health

welfare programme

UK researchers have said that rates of heart disease and alcohol-related illnesses increases as a result of public spending being reduced.
A study carried out by an investigative team for the British Medical Journal concluded that a £70 reduction in social spending per person would spiral the alcohol illness upwards by 2.8% and heart disease by 1.2%.

Researchers collated data about government spending from 15 European countries including the UK from 1980 to 2005.

Trends Show Death Rates Increase as Public Spending Falls

Analysis revealed that as government spending was high, death rates fell and when social spending plummeted mortality rates grew.
Social circumstances were the strongest link to more cases of heart disease, and health deterioration was also connected with social spending on welfare independently of levels of health spending.

The most vulnerable groups likely to be affected are the long-term unemployed, disabled people and families and children.
Reductions in other areas of government spending such as in military spending or on prisons showed no such correlations with higher rates of death.

The study’s release comes after George Osborne revealed that his June 22 2011 emergency budget is to attack benefit payments
Government departments budgets will be slashed by 25% over the next four years apart from the protected areas of the National Health Service and international aid.

Attacks on benefit payments include a reduction in housing benefits from 2012 with a ceiling of £400 implemented, with the unemployed facing a 10% reduction from 2013 in their housing payments.

There will be more stringent tests for those who claim disability benefits from 2013, and the health in pregnancy grant is to be abolished from 2011 with the Sure Start maternity grant restricted to the first child.

Professor Says that Welfare Programme Spending is More Important than Health

The leader of the study, Dr. David Stuckler, a lecturer at the University of Oxford, believes that welfare spending may be a better use of resource than ring fenced health spending.

He also warned the coalition government that sharp attacks on the state will prove to have far reaching negative effects.

He told news.bbc.co.uk "So far the discussions around budget cuts have largely focused on economics. But social circumstances are crucial to people's health and our study shows there could be quite significant harms. If we want to promote a sustainable recovery in Britain, we must first ensure that we have taken care of people's most basic health needs."

In the UK there are currently an estimated 200,000 heart disease deaths every year and 9,000 fatalities from alcohol.

Dr Struckler concluded in his study that between 6,500 and 38,000 extra deaths would occur after putting through Osborne’s measures on a mathematical model.

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UK Study: More are Overweight and Alcohol-related Deaths Increase

overweight

The latest Social Trends report released by the Office National of Statistics has uncovered that alcohol-related deaths are on the increase but life expectancy is lengthening.

One in five men and one in seven women over the age of 16 consume more than double the daily allowance for alcohol once a week, increasing the amount of people who suffer from alcohol illness.

The ONS has been collating data since the 1970s on how people live in the UK and behavioural changes in society. Matthew Hughes, editor of Social Trends 40, told the telegraph.co.uk "The UK and the world are very different places now compared to 40 years ago. This book represents an overall picture of life in the UK today."

Life Expectancy is Higher for Women and Smoking Rates Fall

The report revealed that men are now expected to live to 77.8 years old 10 years older when compared to the '70s. Women are also living longer on average until 82 years old, a slightly less increase of seven years.

There was more encouraging health news over smoking rates as the number of heavy smokers has fallen considerably. In the last four decades male heavy smokers has decreased from 26 per cent to seven per cent. Women have also seen their rates of smoking fall with a drop of eight per cent down to just five per cent.

Social Changes Include Marriage and Communications

The ons.gov.uk also found that more people are living in single person households and do not feel the need to get married. Since 1971 there has been a doubling of single person households to 12 per cent. Two thirds of people over the age of 18 feel fulfilled enough in their lives not having a regular partner with more women putting off having children until later in life.

One of the largest behavioural changes over the last 40 years has been communications due to the internet revolution. Internet connection has now risen to 66 per cent in households compared to to nine per cent -staggeringly over the last ten years only.

Hughes opined: "The statistics highlight some of the main social changes over the last four decades. We are now living longer, less of us get married, and household sizes are smaller.”

"More of us have cars, women are having babies later in life, and more of our household spending goes on housing, water and fuel."

Other significant changes are the amount of those progressing onto higher education with numbers rising since the 1970s by almost two million.
More passports are also needed in modern day Britain as more than 40 million foreign holidays are taken than four decades ago with Spain still tourist’s most popular destination.

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