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Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS)

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Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) is viral respiratory illness that is new to humans. It was first reported in Saudi Arabia in 2012 and has since spread to several other countries, including the United States.Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) is an illness caused by a virus (more specifically, a coronavirus) called Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV). Most MERS patients developed severe respiratory illness with symptoms of fever, cough and shortness of breath. About 3 or 4 out of every 10 patients reported with MERS have died.

Symptoms:

Most people confirmed to have MERS-CoV infection have had severe respiratory illness with symptoms of:

  • fever
  • cough
  • shortness of breath
  • Some people also had diarrhea and nausea/vomiting.
  • For many people with MERS, more severe complications followed, such as pneumonia and kidney failure.

Most of the people who died had a pre-existing medical condition that weakened their immune system, or an underlying medical condition that hadn’t yet been discovered. Medical conditions sometimes weaken people’s immune systems and make them more likely to get sick or have severe illness.

Pre-existing conditions among people who got MERS have included

diabetes
cancer
chronic lung disease
chronic heart disease
chronic kidney disease
Some infected people had mild symptoms (such as cold-like symptoms) or no symptoms at all.

The symptoms of MERS start to appear about 5 or 6 days after a person is exposed, but can range from 2 to 14 days.

Transmission

MERS-CoV, like other coronaviruses, likely spreads from an infected person’s respiratory secretions, such as through coughing. However, we don’t fully understand the precise ways that it spreads.

MERS-CoV has spread from ill people to others through close contact, such as caring for or living with an infected person. Infected people have spread MERS-CoV to others in healthcare settings, such as hospitals. Researchers studying MERS have not seen any ongoing spreading of MERS-CoV in the community.

All reported cases have been linked to countries in and near the Arabian Peninsula. Most infected people either lived in the Arabian Peninsula or recently traveled from the Arabian Peninsula before they became ill. A few people have gotten MERS after having close contact with an infected person who had recently traveled from the Arabian Peninsula. The largest known outbreak of MERS outside the Arabian Peninsula occurred in the Republic of Korea in 2015 and was associated with a traveler returning from the Arabian Peninsula.

Diagnosis:
Real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) testing of upper and lower respiratory secretions and serum
MERS should be suspected in patients who have an unexplained acute febrile lower respiratory infection and who have had either of the following within 14 days of symptom onset:

Travel to or residence in an area where MERS has recently been reported or where transmission could have occurred
Contact with a health care facility where MERS has been transmitted
Close contact with a patient who was ill with suspected MERS
MERS should also be suspected in patients who have had close contact with a patient with suspected MERS and who have a fever whether they have respiratory symptoms or not.

Testing should include real-time RT-PCR testing of upper and lower respiratory secretions, ideally taken from different sites and at different times. Serum should be obtained from patients and from all, even asymptomatic close contacts, including health care workers (to help identify mild or asymptomatic MERS). Serum is obtained immediately after MERS is suspected or after contacts are exposed (acute serum) and 3 to 4 weeks later (convalescent serum). Testing is done at state health departments.

Treatment:
Treatment of MERS is supportive. To help prevent spread from suspected cases, health care practitioners should use standard, contact, and airborne precautions.

There is no vaccine.

Prevention:
There is currently no vaccine to protect people against MERS. But scientists are working to develop one.

We can help reduce the risk of getting respiratory illnesses:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, and help young children do the same. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid personal contact, such as kissing, or sharing cups or eating utensils, with sick people.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects, such as doorknobs.

People Who May Be at Increased Risk for MERS:

  • Recent Travelers from the Arabian Peninsula

If you develop a fever and symptoms of respiratory illness, such as cough or shortness of breath, within 14 days after traveling from countries in or near the Arabian Peninsula, you should call ahead to a healthcare provider and mention your recent travel.

  • Close Contacts of an Ill Traveler from the Arabian Peninsula

If you have had close contact with someone within 14 days after they traveled from a country in or near the Arabian Peninsula, and the traveler has/had fever and symptoms of respiratory illness, such as cough or shortness of breath, you should monitor your health for 14 days, starting from the day you were last exposed to the ill person.

  • Healthcare Personnel Not Using Recommended Infection-Control Precautions

Healthcare personnel who had close contact*** with a confirmed case of MERS while the case was ill, if not using recommended infection control precautions (e.g., appropriate use of personal protective equipment), are at increased risk of developing MERS-CoV infection. These individuals should be evaluated and monitored by a healthcare professional with a higher index of suspicion.

  • Close Contacts of a Confirmed Case of MERS

f you have had close contact with someone who has a confirmed MERS-CoV infection, you should contact a healthcare provider for an evaluation. Your healthcare provider may request laboratory testing and outline additional recommendations, depending on the findings of your evaluation and whether you have symptoms.

  • People with Exposure to Camels

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Direct contact with camels is a risk factor for human infection with MERS-CoV.

The World Health Organization considers certain groups to be at high risk for severe MERS. These groups include people with diabetes, kidney failure, or chronic lung disease, and people who have weakened immune systems. The World Health Organization recommends that these groups take additional precautions:

  1. Avoid contact with camels
  2. Do not drink raw camel milk or raw camel urine
  3. Do not eat undercooked meat, particularly camel meat

We’re sure, you now have a fair idea of what MERS-CoV is all about and the way it could impact your life. Please seek immediate medical attention at the nearest healthcare centre if you find the MERS-CoV. symptoms, don’t ignore the symptoms as there is no medicine available at present.

suggested reading COVID -19

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak

 

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Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) that was first reported from Wuhan, China, on 31 December 2019Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). A novel coronavirus (nCoV) is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans.

Coronaviruses are zoonotic, meaning they are transmitted between animals and people. Detailed investigations found that SARS-CoV was transmitted from civet cats to humans and MERS-CoV from dromedary camels to humans. Several known coronaviruses are circulating in animals that have not yet infected humans.

Common Symptoms:

Common signs of infection include

  •  fever
  • cough
  • shortness of breath
  • breathing difficulties.
  •  infection causing pneumonia,
  • severe acute respiratory syndrome
  • kidney failure.

Prevention of COVID – 19

Till date, there is no specific medicine recommended to prevent or treat the new coronavirus (2019-nCoV), those infected with the virus should receive appropriate care to relieve and treat symptoms, and those with severe illness should receive optimized supportive care.

However Following  simple hygiene steps will keep us safe  & healthy against the virus:

  • Wash your hands often
  • Covering mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing.
  • Thoroughly cooking meat and eggs.
  • Avoid close contact sick people
  • Wear a mask  when you are coughing & sneezing
  • Avoid crowded places like  bus stations, railway stati

Few Myths Busters

Can pets at home spread the new coronavirus (2019-nCoV)?
According to WHO research at present, there is no evidence that companion animals/pets such as dogs or cats can be infected with the new coronavirus. However, it is always a good idea to wash your hands with soap and water after contact with pets. This protects you against various common bacteria such as E.coli and Salmonella that can pass between pets and humans.

Do vaccines against pneumonia protect you against the new coronavirus?
No. Vaccines against pneumonia, such as pneumococcal vaccine and Haemophilus influenza type B (Hib) vaccine, do not provide protection against the new coronavirus.

The virus is so new and different that it needs its own vaccine. Researchers are trying to develop a vaccine against 2019-nCoV, and WHO is supporting their efforts.

Although these vaccines are not effective against 2019-nCoV, vaccination against respiratory illnesses is highly recommended to protect your health.

Are antibiotics effective in preventing and treating the new coronavirus?
No, antibiotics do not work against viruses, only bacteria.

The new coronavirus (2019-nCoV) is a virus and, therefore, antibiotics should not be used as a means of prevention or treatment.

However, if you are hospitalized for the 2019-nCoV, you may receive antibiotics because bacterial co-infection is possible.

COVID-19 virus can be transmitted in areas with hot and humid climates
From the evidence so far, the COVID-19 virus can be transmitted in ALL AREAS, including areas with hot and humid weather. Regardless of climate, adopt protective measures if you live in, or travel to an area reporting COVID-19. The best way to protect yourself against COVID-19 is by frequently cleaning your hands. By doing this you eliminate viruses that may be on your hands and avoid infection that could occur by then touching your eyes, mouth, and nose.

We’re sure, you now have a fair idea of what CORONA VIRUS  disease  is all about and the way it could impact your life. Please seek  immediate medical attention at the nearest healthcare centre if you find the COVID -19 symptoms, don’t ignore the symptoms as there is no medicine available at present.

 

Alzheimer’s Disease

 

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Alzheimer’s disease is a neurological disorder in which the death of brain cells causes memory loss and cognitive decline.Symptoms usually develop slowly and get worse over time, becoming severe enough to interfere with daily tasks.Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia — a continuous decline in thinking, behavioral and social skills that disrupts a person’s ability to function independently.

The disease is named after Dr. Alois Alzheimer. In 1906, Dr. Alzheimer noticed changes in the brain tissue of a woman who had died of an unusual mental illness. Her symptoms included memory loss, language problems, and unpredictable behavior. After she died, he examined her brain and found many abnormal clumps (now called amyloid plaques) and tangled bundles of fibers (now called neurofibrillary, or tau, tangles).

These plaques and tangles in the brain are still considered some of the main features of Alzheimer’s disease. Another feature is the loss of connections between nerve cells (neurons) in the brain. Neurons transmit messages between different parts of the brain, and from the brain to muscles and organs in the body. Many other complex brain changes are thought to play a role in Alzheimer’s, too.

This damage initially appears to take place in the hippocampus, the part of the brain essential in forming memories. As neurons die, additional parts of the brain are affected. By the final stage of Alzheimer’s, damage is widespread, and brain tissue has shrunk significantly.

Understanding Alzheimer’s and dementia

Alzheimer’s is the most common cause of dementia, a general term for memory loss and other cognitive abilities serious enough to interfere with daily life. Alzheimer’s disease accounts for 60 percent to 80 percent of dementia cases.Learn more about dimentia

Sign & Symptoms of Alzheimer

The most common early symptom of Alzheimer’s is difficulty remembering newly learned information.

the person must have experienced a decline in cognitive or behavioral function and performance compared with how they were previously. This decline must interfere with their ability to function at work or in usual activities.

Reduced ability to take in and remember new information, which can lead, for example,

  • repetitive questions or conversations
  • misplacing personal belongings
  • forgetting events or appointments
  • getting lost on a familiar route

Impairments to reasoning, complex tasking, and exercising judgment, for example:

  • poor understanding of safety risks
  • inability to manage finances
  • poor decision-making ability
  • inability to plan complex or sequential activities

If symptoms begin or worsen over the course of hours or days, you should seek immediate medical attention, as this could indicate an acute illness.

Alzheimer’s is most likely when memory loss is a prominent symptom, especially in the area of learning and recalling new information.

Language problems can also be a key early symptom, for example, struggling to find the right words.

If visualization deficits are most prominent, these would include:

inability to recognize objects and faces
difficulty comprehending separate parts of a scene at once
difficulty with reading text, known as alexia
The most prominent deficits in executive dysfunction would be to do with reasoning, judgment, and problem-solving.

Causes
Scientists believe that for most people, Alzheimer’s disease is caused by a combination of genetic, lifestyle and environmental factors that affect the brain over time.

The exact causes of Alzheimer’s disease aren’t fully understood, but at its core are problems with brain proteins that fail to function normally, disrupt the work of brain cells (neurons) and unleash a series of toxic events. Neurons are damaged, lose connections to each other and eventually die.

The damage most often starts in the region of the brain that controls memory, but the process begins years before the first symptoms. The loss of neurons spreads in a somewhat predictable pattern to other regions of the brains. By the late stage of the disease, the brain has shrunk significantly.

Researchers are focused on the role of two proteins:

Plaques. Beta-amyloid is a leftover fragment of a larger protein. When these fragments cluster together, they appear to have a toxic effect on neurons and to disrupt cell-to-cell communication. These clusters form larger deposits called amyloid plaques, which also include other cellular debris.
Tangles. Tau proteins play a part in a neuron’s internal support and transport system to carry nutrients and other essential materials. In Alzheimer’s disease, tau proteins change shape and organize themselves into structures called neurofibrillary tangles. The tangles disrupt the transport system and are toxic to cells.

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Stages
The progression of Alzheimer’s can be broken down into three main stages:

Alzheimer’s disease typically progresses slowly in three general stages — mild (early stage), moderate (middle stage), and severe (late stage). Since Alzheimer’s affects people in different ways, the timing and severity of dementia symptoms varies as each person progresses through the stages of Alzheimer’s differently.

Mild Alzheimer’s disease (early stage)
In the early stage of Alzheimer’s, a person may function independently. He or she may still drive, work and be part of social activities. Despite this, the person may feel as if he or she is having memory lapses, such as forgetting familiar words or the location of everyday objects.

Friends, family or others close to the individual begin to notice difficulties. During a detailed medical interview, doctors may be able to detect problems in memory or concentration. Common difficulties include:

Problems coming up with the right word or name
Trouble remembering names when introduced to new people
Challenges performing tasks in social or work settings.
Forgetting material that one has just read
Losing or misplacing a valuable object
Increasing trouble with planning or organizing

Moderate Alzheimer’s disease (middle stage)
Moderate Alzheimer’s is typically the longest stage and can last for many years. As the disease progresses, the person with Alzheimer’s will require a greater level of care.

During the moderate stage of Alzheimer’s, the dementia symptoms are more pronounced. A person may have greater difficulty performing tasks, such as paying bills, but they may still remember significant details about their life.

You may notice the person with Alzheimer’s confusing words, getting frustrated or angry, or acting in unexpected ways, such as refusing to bathe. Damage to nerve cells in the brain can make it difficult to express thoughts and perform routine tasks.
At this point, symptoms will be noticeable to others and may include:

Forgetfulness of events or about one’s own personal history

Feeling moody or withdrawn, especially in socially or mentally challenging situations

Being unable to recall their own address or telephone number or the high school or college from which they graduated

Confusion about where they are or what day it is

The need for help choosing proper clothing for the season or the occasion

Trouble controlling bladder and bowels in some individuals

Changes in sleep patterns, such as sleeping during the day and becoming restless at night

An increased risk of wandering and becoming lost

Personality and behavioral changes, including suspiciousness and delusions or compulsive, repetitive behavior like hand-wringing or tissue shredding

Severe Alzheimer’s disease (Final stage)

In the final stage of this disease, dementia symptoms are severe. Individuals lose the ability to respond to their environment, to carry on a conversation and, eventually, to control movement. They may still say words or phrases, but communicating pain becomes difficult. As memory and cognitive skills continue to worsen, significant personality changes may take place and individuals need extensive help with daily activities.

Diagnosis
There is no single test for Alzheimer’s disease, so doctors will look at the signs and symptoms, take a medical history, and rule out other conditions before making a diagnosis.

They may also check the person’s neurological function, for example, by testing their balance, senses, and reflexes.

Other assessments may include a blood or urine test, a CT or MRI scan of the brain, and screening for depression.

Sometimes the symptoms of dementia are related to an inherited disorder such as Huntington’s disease, so genetic testing may be done.

After ruling out other possible conditions, the doctor will carry out cognitive and memory tests, to assess the person’s ability to think and remember.

Risk factors

  • Age
  • Family History
  • Genetics
  • Down syndrome
  • Sex
  • life style & heart health
  • Past Head Trauma
  • poor sleep patterns

Treatment
There is no known cure for Alzheimer’s. The death of brain cells cannot be reversed.

However, there are therapeutic interventions that can make it easier for people to live with the disease.

According to the Alzheimer’s Association, the following are important elements of dementia care:

effective management of any conditions occurring alongside the Alzheimer’s
activities and day-care programs
involvement of support groups and services
Drug therapy
No disease-modifying drugs are available for Alzheimer’s disease, but some options may reduce the symptoms and help improve quality of life.

Prevention
Alzheimer’s disease is not a preventable condition. However, a number of lifestyle risk factors for Alzheimer’s can be modified. Evidence suggests that changes in diet, exercise and habits — steps to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease — may also lower your risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease and other disorders that cause dementia. Heart-healthy lifestyle choices that may reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s include the following:

Exercise regularly
Eat a diet of fresh produce, healthy oils and foods low in saturated fat
Follow treatment guidelines to manage high blood pressure, diabetes and high cholesterol
If you smoke, ask your doctor for help to quit smoking
Studies have shown that preserved thinking skills later in life and a reduced risk of Alzheimer’s disease are associated with participating in social events, reading, dancing, playing board games, creating art, playing an instrument, and other activities that require mental and social engagement.

How Long Can a Person Live with Alzheimer’s Disease?
The time from diagnosis to death varies—as little as 3 or 4 years if the person is older than 80 when diagnosed, to as long as 10 or more years if the person is younger.Although treatment can help manage symptoms in some people, currently there is no cure for this devastating disease.

 

We’re sure, you now have a fair idea of what Alzheimer’s disease is is all about and the way it could impact your life. Please feel free to contact us  query@gtsmeditour.com if you’d like to take a second opinion on your condition or undergo treatment for the same.

 

Obesity

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Obesity is a chronic condition defined by an excess amount of body fat. A certain amount of body fat is necessary for storing energy, heat insulation, shock absorption, and other functions.

The foods we eat every day contribute to our well-being. Foods provide us with the nutrients we need for healthy bodies and the calories we need for energy. If we take in more calories than we burn, the extra food turns to fat and is stored in our bodies. If we overeat regularly, we gain weight, and if we continue to gain weight, we may become obese.

All  you need to know about – Body mass index (BMI) 

Body mass index best defines obesity. A person’s height and weight determines his or her body mass index. The body mass index (BMI) equals a person’s weight in kilograms (kg) divided by their height in meters (m) squared (more information will be found later in the article). 

Body Mass Index Chart

BMI Weight Status
Below 18.5 Underweight
18.5 – 24.9 Normal
25.0 – 29.9 Overweight
30 or greater Obese


Being a little overweight may not cause many noticeable problems. However, once you are obese, you may develop symptoms that affect your daily life.

Obesity is a chronic medical disease that can lead to diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity associated cardiovascular disease such as heart disease, gallstones, and other chronic illnesses.

Most common causes of obesity

The balance between calorie intake and energy expenditure determines a person’s weight. If a person eats more calories than he or she burns (metabolizes), the person gains weight (the body will store the excess energy as fat). If a person eats fewer calories than he or she metabolizes, he or she will lose weight. Therefore, the most common causes of obesity are overeating and physical inactivity. Ultimately, body weight is the result of genetics, metabolism, environment, behavior, and culture.

  • Physical inactivity
  • Overeating.
  • Genetics.
  • A diet high in simple carbohydrates

Risk factors

Obesity usually results from a combination of causes and contributing factors:

Family History

The genes you inherit from your parents may affect the amount of body fat you store, and where that fat is distributed. Genetics may also play a role in how efficiently your body converts food into energy, how your body regulates your appetite and how your body burns calories during exercise.

Obesity tends to run in families. That’s not just because of the genes they share. Family members also tend to share similar eating and activity habits.

Lifestyle choices

Unhealthy diet. A diet that’s high in calories, lacking in fruits and vegetables, full of fast food, and laden with high-calorie beverages and oversized portions contributes to weight gain.

Liquid calories. People can drink many calories without feeling full, especially calories from alcohol. Other high-calorie beverages, such as sugared soft drinks, can contribute to significant weight gain.

Inactivity. If you have a sedentary lifestyle, you can easily take in more calories every day than you burn through exercise and routine daily activities. Looking at computer, tablet and phone screens is a sedentary activity. The number of hours you spend in front of a screen is highly associated with weight gain.

Certain diseases and medications

In some people, obesity can be traced to a medical cause, such as Prader-Willi syndrome, Cushing syndrome and other conditions. Medical problems, such as arthritis, also can lead to decreased activity, which may result in weight gain.

Some medications can lead to weight gain if you don’t compensate through diet or activity. These medications include some antidepressants, anti-seizure medications, diabetes medications, antipsychotic medications, steroids and beta blockers.

Social and economic issues

Social and economic factors are linked to obesity. Avoiding obesity is difficult if you don’t have safe areas to walk or exercise. Similarly, you may not have been taught healthy ways of cooking, or you may not have access to healthier foods. In addition, the people you spend time with may influence your weight — you’re more likely to develop obesity if you have friends or relatives with obesity.

Age

Obesity can occur at any age, even in young children. But as you age, hormonal changes and a less active lifestyle increase your risk of obesity. In addition, the amount of muscle in your body tends to decrease with age. Generally, lower muscle mass leads to a decrease in metabolism. These changes also reduce calorie needs, and can make it harder to keep off excess weight. If you don’t consciously control what you eat and become more physically active as you age, you’ll likely gain weight.

Other factors

Pregnancy. Weight gain is common during pregnancy. Some women find this weight difficult to lose after the baby is born. This weight gain may contribute to the development of obesity in women. Breast-feeding may be the best option to lose the weight gained during pregnancy.

Quitting smoking. Quitting smoking is often associated with weight gain. And for some, it can lead to enough weight gain to qualify as obesity. Often, this happens as people use food to cope with smoking withdrawal. In the long run, however, quitting smoking is still a greater benefit to your health than is continuing to smoke. Your doctor can help you prevent weight gain after quitting smoking.

Lack of sleep. Not getting enough sleep or getting too much sleep can cause changes in hormones that increase your appetite. You may also crave foods high in calories and carbohydrates, which can contribute to weight gain.

Stress. Many external factors that affect your mood and well-being may contribute to obesity. People often seek more high-calorie food when experiencing stressful situations.

Microbiome. Your gut bacteria are affected by what you eat and may contribute to weight gain or difficulty losing weight.

Previous attempts to lose weight. Previous attempts of weight loss followed by rapid weight regain may contribute to further weight gain. This phenomenon, sometimes called yo-yo dieting, can slow your metabolism.

Even if you have one or more of these risk factors, it doesn’t mean that you’re destined to develop obesity. You can counteract most risk factors through diet, physical activity and exercise, and behavior changes.

Symptoms

Although gaining a few extra pounds may seem insignificant as far as a person’s overall health is concerned, weight gain can quickly escalate to a serious medical condition. Symptoms for Adults

Symptoms of obesity can negatively impact one’s daily life.

For adults, symptoms include:

  • Excess body fat accumulation (particularly around the waist)
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sweating (more than usual)
  • Snoring
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Skin problems (from moisture accumulating in the folds of skin)
  • Inability to perform simple physical tasks (that one could easily perform before weight gain)
  • Fatigue (from mild to extreme)2
  • Pain (commonly in the back and joints)
  • Psychological impact (negative self-esteem, depression, shame, social isolation)

Common symptoms of childhood obesity may include:

  • Eating disorders
  • Fatty tissue deposits (may be noticeable in the breast area)
  • The appearance of stretch marks on the hips and back
  • Acanthosis nigricans (dark velvety skin around the neck and other areas)
  • Shortness of breath with physical activity4
  • Sleep apnea4
  • Constipation 
  • GI reflux
  • Poor self-esteem4
  • Early puberty in girls/delayed puberty in boys
  • Orthopedic problems (such as flat feet or dislocated hips)

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Diagnosis

Diagnosing obesity involves much more than simply stepping onto a scale. In fact, a thorough evaluation of a person’s weight status is a complex procedure that involves taking into consideration many different factors and the use of various tools and diagnostic tests, including body mass index (BMI), waist circumference measurement, physical exams, and lab tests to check for comorbidities.

Self-Checks/At-Home Testing

The most commonly used scale that healthcare providers use to diagnose obesity, is called the body mass index or BMI.

Labs and Tests

It’s important to understand the significance of seeking professional help when it comes to diagnosing childhood, adolescent or adult obesity.

Diagnostic testing for obesity and overweight conditions may involve some lab tests to evaluate the extent of how severely the condition has impacted a person’s overall health and to check for signs of an underlying disease. The lab tests that the healthcare provider will order depend on many factors, such as an individual’s risk factors to obesity-related diseases and current symptoms

Lab tests may include:

Cholesterol levels: Low good cholesterol (HDL) and high bad cholesterol (LDL) levels are commonly associated with obesity

Fasting blood sugar to check for signs of early diabetes

A thyroid test to observe for signs of thyroid disease, commonly linked with obesity

Liver function tests to screen for the potential of fatty liver disease, which often accompanies obesity

Other tests may be ordered by the physician or other healthcare provider to evaluate the overall impact that obesity has on the body. One such test is an electrocardiogram, used to look for signs of heart disease.

Diagnosing Childhood Obesity

To diagnose childhood obesity, the healthcare provider will use a growth chart to evaluate how a child’s weight and height compare to other kids of the same age and sex. For example, a child who is considered in the 90th percentile means that compared with other kids the same age and sex, 90% have a lower weight and BMI.

Because the growth pattern and body frame can differ drastically from one child to the next, pediatricians take several factors into consideration when diagnosing a child’s weight status, these include:

  1. Growth charts
  2. Family history of obesity
  3. Eating habits
  4. Activity level
  5. Psychosocial history (includes sleep pattern, mood disorders such as depression, social interactions, and factors such as being bullied)

Other health conditions

Lab tests that may be ordered when a child is suspected of being overweight include:

A cholesterol test

A blood sugar test

Blood tests to check for hormone imbalances

Blood tests to check for obesity-linked conditions

Treatment

The goal of obesity treatment is to reach and stay at a healthy weight. This improves your overall health and lowers your risk of developing complications related to obesity. You may need to work with a team of health professionals — including a dietitian, behavioral counselor or an obesity specialist — to help you understand and make changes in your eating and activity habits.

The initial treatment goal is usually a modest weight loss — 5% to 10% of your total weight. That means that if you weigh 200 pounds (91 kg) and have obesity by BMI standards, you would need to lose only about 10 to 20 pounds (4.5 to 9 kg) for your health to begin to improve. However, the more weight you lose, the greater the benefits.

All weight-loss programs require changes in your eating habits and increased physical activity. The treatment methods that are right for you depend on your obesity severity, your overall health and your willingness to participate in your weight-loss plan.

Dietary changes

Reducing calories and practicing healthier eating habits are vital to overcoming obesity. Although you may lose weight quickly at first, steady weight loss over the long term is considered the safest way to lose weight and the best way to keep it off permanently.

There is no best weight-loss diet. Choose one that includes healthy foods that you feel will work for you. Dietary changes to treat obesity include:

Cutting calories The key to weight loss is reducing how many calories you take in. The first step is to review your typical eating and drinking habits to see how many calories you normally consume and where you can cut back.

Feeling full on less. Some foods — such as desserts, candies, fats and processed foods — contain a large amount of calories for a small portion. In contrast, fruits and vegetables provide a larger portion size with fewer calories.

Making healthier choices. To make your overall diet healthier, eat more plant-based foods, such as fruits, vegetables and whole-grain carbohydrates. Also emphasize lean sources of protein — such as beans, lentils and soy — and lean meats. If you like fish, try to include fish twice a week. Limit salt and added sugar. Eat small amounts of fats, and make sure they come from heart-healthy sources, such as olive, canola and nut oils.

Restricting certain foods. Certain diets limit the amount of a particular food group, such as high-carbohydrate or full-fat foods. Ask your doctor which diet plans have been found effective and which might be helpful for you.

Meal replacements. These plans suggest that you replace one or two meals with their products — such as low-calorie shakes or meal bars — and eat healthy snacks and a healthy, balanced third meal that’s low in fat and calories.

Exercise and activity

Increased physical activity or exercise is an essential part of obesity treatment. Most people who are able to maintain their weight loss for more than a year get regular exercise, even simply Behavior changes

A behavior modification program can help you make lifestyle changes and lose weight and keep it off. Steps to take include examining your current habits to find out what factors, stresses or situations may have contributed to your obesitywalking.

Weight-loss medication

Losing weight requires a healthy diet and regular exercise. But in certain situations, prescription weight-loss medication may help.

Keep in mind, though, that weight-loss medication is meant to be used along with diet, exercise and behavior changes, not instead of them. The main purpose of weight-loss medications, also known as anti-obesity medications, is to help you to stick to a low-calorie diet by stopping the hunger and lack of fullness signals that appear when trying to lose weight.

Your doctor may recommend weight-loss medication if other diet and exercise programs haven’t worked and you meet one of these criteria:

Your body mass index (BMI) is 30 or greater

Your BMI is greater than 27, and you also have medical complications of obesity, such as diabetes, high blood pressure or sleep apnea

Before selecting a medication for you, your doctor will consider your health history, as well as possible side effects. Some weight-loss medications can’t be used by women who are pregnant or by people who take certain medications or have chronic health conditions.

Endoscopic procedures for weight loss

These types of procedures don’t require any incisions in your skin. After you receive anesthesia, flexible tubes and tools are inserted through your mouth and down your throat into your stomach.

There are several different types of endoscopic procedures used for weight loss. One procedure involves placing stitches in your stomach to reduce its size and the amount of food you can comfortably consume. In another endoscopic procedure, doctors insert a small balloon into your stomach. The balloon is filled with water to reduce the amount of space available in your stomach. This helps you feel fuller faster.

These procedures are usually approved for people with BMIs of 30 or above when diet and exercise alone have not been successful. The expected weight loss varies among procedures from 5% to 20% of total body weight loss.

In some people, weight-loss surgery, also called bariatric surgery, is an option. Weight-loss surgery limits the amount of food you’re able to comfortably eat or decreases the absorption of food and calories, or it does both. While weight-loss surgery offers the best chance of losing the most weight, it can pose serious risks.

Weight-loss surgery for obesity may be considered if you have tried other methods to lose weight that haven’t worked and:

You have extreme obesity (BMI of 40 or higher)

Your BMI is 35 to 39.9, and you also have a serious weight-related health problem, such as diabetes or high blood pressure

You’re committed to making the lifestyle changes that are necessary for surgery to work

Weight-loss surgery helps some people lose as much as 35% or more of their excess body weight. But weight-loss surgery isn’t a miracle obesity cure.

It doesn’t guarantee that you’ll lose all of your excess weight or that you’ll keep it off long term. Weight-loss success after surgery depends on your commitment to making lifelong changes in your eating and exercise habits.

Common weight-loss surgeries include:

Gastric bypass surgery. In gastric bypass (Roux-en-Y gastric bypass), the surgeon creates a small pouch at the top of your stomach. The small intestine is then cut a short distance below the main stomach and connected to the new pouch. Food and liquid flow directly from the pouch into this part of the intestine, bypassing most of your stomach.

Adjustable gastric banding. In this procedure, your stomach is separated into two pouches with an inflatable band. Pulling the band tight, like a belt, the surgeon creates a tiny channel between the two pouches. The band keeps the opening from expanding and is generally designed to stay in place permanently.

Biliopancreatic diversion with duodenal switch. This procedure begins with the surgeon removing a large part of the stomach. The surgeon leaves the valve that releases food to the small intestine and the first part of the small intestine (duodenum). Then the surgeon closes off the middle section of the intestine and attaches the last part directly to the duodenum. The separated section of the intestine is reattached to the end of the intestine to allow bile and digestive juices to flow into this part of the intestine.

Gastric sleeve. In this procedure, part of the stomach is removed, creating a smaller reservoir for food. It’s a less complicated surgery than gastric bypass or biliopancreatic diversion with duodenal switch.

Preventing weight regain after obesity treatment

Unfortunately, it’s common to regain weight no matter what obesity treatment methods you try. If you take weight-loss medications, you’ll probably regain weight when you stop taking them. You might even regain weight after weight-loss surgery if you continue to overeat or overindulge in high-calorie foods or high-calorie beverages.

One of the best ways to prevent regaining the weight you’ve lost is to get regular physical activity. Aim for 45 to 60 minutes a day.

Keep track of your physical activity if it helps you stay motivated and on course. As you lose weight and gain better health, talk to your doctor about what additional activities you might be able to do and, if appropriate, how to give your activity and exercise a boost.

Complications

People with obesity are more likely to develop a number of potentially serious health problems:

Image result for obesity

Heart disease and strokes. Obesity makes you more likely to have high blood pressure and abnormal cholesterol levels, which are risk factors for heart disease and strokes.

Type 2 diabetes. Obesity can affect the way your body uses insulin to control blood sugar levels. This raises your risk of insulin resistance and diabetes.

Certain cancers. Obesity may increase your risk of cancer of the uterus, cervix, endometrium, ovary, breast, colon, rectum, esophagus, liver, gallbladder, pancreas, kidney and prostate.

Digestive problems. Obesity increases the likelihood that you’ll develop heartburn, gallbladder disease and liver problems.

Gynecological and sexual problems. Obesity may cause infertility and irregular periods in women. Obesity also can cause erectile dysfunction in men.

Sleep apnea. People with obesity are more likely to have sleep apnea, a potentially serious disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts during sleep.

Osteoarthritis. Obesity increases the stress placed on weight-bearing joints, in addition to promoting inflammation within the body. These factors may lead to complications such as osteoarthritis.

Quality of life

Obesity can diminish your overall quality of life. You may not be able to do things you used to do, such as participating in enjoyable activities. You may avoid public places. People with obesity may even encounter discrimination.

 

Other weight-related issues that may affect your quality of life include:

  1. Depression
  2. Disability
  3. Sexual problems
  4. Shame and guilt
  5. Social isolation
  6. Lower work achievement

Prevention

Whether you’re at risk of obesity, currently overweight or at a healthy weight, you can take steps to prevent unhealthy weight gain and related health problems. Not surprisingly, the steps to prevent weight gain are the same as the steps to lose weight: daily exercise, a healthy diet, and a long-term commitment to watch what you eat and drink.

Exercise regularly. You need to get 150 to 300 minutes of moderate-intensity activity a week to prevent weight gain. Moderately intense physical activities include fast walking and swimming.

Follow a healthy-eating plan. Focus on low-calorie, nutrient-dense foods, such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Avoid saturated fat and limit sweets and alcohol. Eat three regular meals a day with limited snacking. You can still enjoy small amounts of high-fat, high-calorie foods as an infrequent treat. Just be sure to choose foods that promote a healthy weight and good health most of the time.

Know and avoid the food traps that cause you to eat. Identify situations that trigger out-of-control eating. Try keeping a journal and write down what you eat, how much you eat, when you eat, how you’re feeling and how hungry you are. After a while, you should see patterns emerge. You can plan ahead and develop strategies for handling these types of situations and stay in control of your eating behaviors.

Monitor your weight regularly. People who weigh themselves at least once a week are more successful in keeping off excess pounds. Monitoring your weight can tell you whether your efforts are working and can help you detect small weight gains before they become big problems.

Be consistent. Sticking to your healthy-weight plan during the week, on the weekends, and amidst vacation and holidays as much as possible increases your chances of long-term success.

We’re sure, you now have a fair idea of what Obesity is all about and the way it could impact your life. Please feel free to contact us  query@gtsmeditour.com if you’d like to take a second opinion on your condition or undergo treatment for Obesity.

 

 

Glaucoma

Image result for trabeculectomy

Glaucoma is known as the “silent thief of sight” as it is a symptom less disease, and people usually do not realize that they are suffering from glaucoma unless they visit the ophthalmologist or have reached an advanced stage of disease. If undiagnosed and untreated, glaucoma can lead to irreversible loss of vision and even cause blindness. Though the disease is not curable, the progress of glaucoma can be halted and total blindness can be prevented if it is detected early.

What is Glaucoma?

Glaucoma is a serious eye disease where the optic nerve that carries signals from the eye to the brain gets damaged due to unhealthy fluid pressure inside your eye.The intraocular pressure rises due to an alteration in the drainage system of the eye, which is either blocked or offers resistance to the normal drainage.Since the optic nerve is the primary carrier of visual stimulus to the brain, damage to it could actually result in significant loss of vision. Glaucoma generally affects both the eyes, although the pressure inside each eye could be different,the estimated number of cases of glaucoma in India is 12 million. This is around one fifth of global burden of glaucoma.

Image result for glaucoma images photos

Glaucoma – Symptoms of this disease?

There are no early symptoms associated with Glaucoma.and hence a routine eye check up after the age of 40 is usually advisable to rule out glaucoma.

However, most Glaucoma patients visit a doctor due to one or more of the following symptoms:

  • Frequent changes of glasses, especially for near work, but none is satisfactory,
  • Rainbow colored rings around lights (seeing halos),
  • Blurred or foggy vision
  • Loss of side vision.
  • Redness of the eye

TYPES OF GLAUCOMA

The different types of glaucoma include

  • Primary open angle glaucoma – is the most common type of glaucoma. In this type of glaucoma, the part of the eye through which the fluid of the eye flows out is open, permitting the outflow of fluid, but the patient still has high pressure. This type of glaucoma develops slowly without any symptoms. Initially it affects the peripheral or side vision and very gradually progresses to the centre. This is the reason why many people are not aware that they have the condition until they have significant vision loss affecting central vision.

Risk factors for primary open angle glaucoma are:

  1. Age more than 40 years
  2. Race – African Americans
  3. Family history of glaucoma
  4. Systemic diseases such as diabetes mellitus, hypertension, heart disease
  5. Injuries to the eye
  6. High myopia
  • Angle closure glaucoma or closed angle glaucoma –is a less common type of glaucoma which occurs due to narrow drainage channels in the eye. Gradual closing of the angle is called chronic angle closure and if the drainage angle closes suddenly, it causes an acute angle closure attack. Acute angle closure glaucoma usually presents as an emergency.  A patient who is in an acute angle closure attack will have symptoms of eye pain, nausea, vomiting, redness and blurred vision due to a rapid increase in the eye pressure. In such cases the patient needs immediate treatment by an eye specialist.

Risk factors for angle closure glaucoma:

  1. Age more than 40 years
  2. Race – East Asians
  3. Family history of glaucoma
  4. Women
  5. High hypermetropia or those with a high plus power
  • Normal tension glaucoma /Low tension glaucoma –In this type of glaucoma the optic nerve can get affected even though the pressure in the eye is normal. Although its cause is not entirely known or understood, normal tension glaucoma is believed to occur either because of an extremely fragile optic nerve that can get damaged even though the pressure in the eye is normal, or because of reduced blood flow to the optic nerve. Because of its silent nature, people usually do not have any visual complaints until a very advanced stage of the disease.

Risk factors for normal tension glaucoma are:

  1. Family history of normal tension glaucoma
  2. Race – Japanese ancestry
  3. Thinner corneas
  4. Heart disease
  5. Migraine and peripheral vascular disease
  • Secondary glaucoma –There are certain other types of glaucoma where there is an identifiable cause for increased eye pressure resulting in optic nerve damage and vision loss. These are called secondary glaucoma. It may be caused by prolonged, indiscriminate use of steroids, severe diabetic retinopathy, injuries to the eye, inflammation of the eye (uveitis) or advanced cases of cataract.

If you believe you have any of these risk factors get an eye examination done. Always remember to inform your eye doctor about the risk factors that you have. This will help your doctor decide how often you need to get your eyes examined.

Glaucoma may also occur in children (congenital glaucoma) after trauma or with inflammation.

Diagnosis & Treatment

Initial glaucoma workup involves the measurement of the intraocular pressure (IOP) with the help of a Goldmann’s Applanation tonometer, evaluation of the angle of the eye with a Goldmann goniolens , examination of the optic nerve head by slit lamp bio microscopy and the measurement of the central corneal thickness using a pachymeter. Ultrasound biomicroscopy helps us to further assess angle details and dimensions and actively intervene based on the findings

The Visual Field test is a method of measuring your peripheral or side vision (which is affected first by glaucoma), through which your doctor can diagnose and monitor glaucoma. The data from the test is used to determine the severity of your glaucoma, level of vision loss, damage to the visual pathways of the brain, and other optic nerve diseases.

Ophthalmoscopy

 Treatment:

  •  Medication

Glaucoma can be treated with external medication or surgery. The medication generally involves the usage of eye drops to reduce the secretion of the fluid (aqueous humor).

  • Surgery:
  1. Trabeculectomy (TRAB) 

 A surgery helps to open up the blocks in the drainage pipe to enable the outflow of the fluid. This can be performed by a procedure called Trabeculectomy (TRAB)

 

       2.  LASER Treatment

3. Glaucoma drainage valve implant placements are performed by qualified surgeons

Image result for trabeculectomy

Further, in cases of congenital glaucoma surgery is opted.

Glaucoma – prevention, Diet, 

There’s actually nothing you can do to prevent Glaucoma. However, with early detection, you could reduce the impact on the optic nerve, as the damage once done is irreversible. 

The best way to tackle this disease is through regular eye check-ups.

Get glaucoma screening done if you have a family history of glaucoma, diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, asthma, arthritis, migraine, thyroid disease, using minus or plus powered glasses, any history of trauma to eye. If detected in the early stage, the disease can be arrested and existing vision can be retained.

Babies born with whitish coloured eyes or bigger than normal eyes, or babies with severe watering and difficulty in opening their eyes at birth, should be screened for congenital glaucoma.

Ophthalmic consultation is a must for everyone over the age of 40, in an eye hospital rather than getting tested for near vision at an optical shop.

Avoid-Lifting of heavy weights is known to cause a temporary increase in the intraocular pressure. Hence, patients who already suffer from glaucoma are advised to avoid lifting very heavy weights. Yoga, which is a very popular form of exercise includes various ‘asanas’ or positions. Some of these asanas, particularly those with the head – down position (sheershasana) have been proven to cause an increase in the eye pressure. Therefore, patients with glaucoma are advised to avoid such positions.

Diet – Foods which are rich in trans-fats, the kind found in deep fried food, prevent the optimal functioning of omega 3- fatty acids and increases eye pressure. Such food should be avoided.Habit forming substances – such as caffeine, alcohol, tobacco and marijuana are known to have a negative effect on eye pressure. Caffeine, which is consumed widely, is known to cause a temporary increase in the eye pressure.

We’re sure, you now have a fair idea of what Glaucoma is all about and the way it could impact your life. Please feel free to contact us  query@gtsmeditour.com if you’d like to take a second opinion on your condition or undergo treatment for glaucoma.

 

Hernia

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A hernia occurs when a piece of skin or organ tissue (like the intestine) bulges through the outer tissue layer that normally holds the area in.

What is a hernia?

Typically, protective layers of tissue called fascia hold organs and tissues in place. They act as a strong outer covering to keep tissue supported and in place.But sometimes the fascia can develop weak points. Instead of holding the tissue in, it allows the tissue to bulge or protrude through the weakened area. Healthcare providers call this a hernia.

Hernias don’t always require treatment, but they also don’t usually go away on their own. Sometimes you may  be recommended surgery to prevent further complications from a hernia.

Symptoms:

Typically, hernias don’t hurt — you see a bulge or lump in your belly or groin. Sometimes, you only see the bulge when you laugh, cough, or strain, like when you lift a heavy object. Often, you can press it back into place. You may also notice:

  • The bulge gets bigger over time.
  • You have a feeling of fullness.
  • Pain, pressure, or a dull ache around the bulge
  • Pain when you lift something

Several different hernia types exist — and some can be extremely painful and  require medical emergencies.

Keep reading to find out more about hernias, plus view images of some of the most common hernia types.

Types of hernias

Hernias involve a protruding internal organ or body part being pushed through the muscle or tissue. The most common types include:

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Inguinal hernia.

Most commonly found in men, these occur when the intestine or, very rarely, the bladder extend into the groin via the inguinal canal.

Femoral hernia. Though less common, femoral hernias are often confused with inguinal hernias because they occur in a similar area for similar reasons. However, these involve a bulge appearing in the lower abdomen, groin, hip, or upper thigh.

Hiatal hernia.

These occur when part of the stomach extends into the chest through openings in the diaphragm.

Umbilical hernia. Most commonly found in infants, these occur when part of the intestine pushes into the abdomen through the belly button.

Incisional hernia. Of those who undergo an abdominal surgery, 33 percent will develop an incisional hernia. Also known as ventral hernias, these develop when the closed tissue and muscles don’t entirely re-attach, allowing internal structures to protrude through the weakened area.

Inguinal hernia

The most common symptom for an inguinal hernia is a bulge in the groin, which can appear without warning as a result of excess strain, such as:

  1. heavy lifting
  2. violent sneezing, such as from allergies
  3. chronic coughing, such as from smoking
  4. straining when urinating or having a bowel movement
  5. increased internal pressure in the abdomen

These bulges tend to become more visible in an upright position and may cause pain or discomfort in your groin when:

  • bending over
  • lifting
  • coughing
  • laughing

Other symptoms include:

burning or aching in the area of the bulge

heavy dragging sensation in your groin

pressure, sensitivity, or weakness in your groin

swelling and discomfort around the testicles if the protrusion descends into the scrotum

Femoral hernias

Femoral hernias, especially small- or medium-sized ones, might not present any symptoms. However, larger ones might cause pain or discomfort when standing up, lifting heavy objects, or if they appear in the upper thigh or hip.

Umbilical hernias:

For babies with umbilical hernias, the bulge may only appear when crying or coughing. These are usually painless for children, but adult umbilical hernias may cause some discomfort in the abdomen.

Hiatal hernias:

Hiatal hernias tend to be so small that there’s a chance you won’t feel them at all. However, larger ones could result in the opening in your diaphragm also becoming larger, which makes you more susceptible to other organs extending into the chest. This may feel like heartburn.

Other symptoms include:

  • stomach pressure, including squeezing or twisting sensations
  • chest pain
  • acid reflux due to increased stomach acid retention
  • difficulty breathing or swallowing
  • indigestion
  • Stomach acid retention may also result in stomach ulcers, which can bleed and lead to low blood counts.

Incisional hernia

Incisional hernias depend on the size of the incision. They often develop within three weeks to six months after a procedure but can occur at any time.

A bulge or protrusion at the site of the incision is the most common symptom but if too much tissue or intestine gets stuck in the weak spot, it can create severe pain when the tissue loses blood supply. This is a medical emergency and requires immediate care.

Complications

Hernias may be susceptible to several complications if left untreated, such as:

  1. pressure on surrounding tissues or muscles
  2. incarcerated or strangulated hernia
  3. bowel obstruction
  4. tissue death

An incarcerated hernia occurs if the hernia gets trapped in the abdominal wall, which can result in an obstructed bowel or strangulation.

When the hernia is strangulated, it means that blood flow to the intestine has been cut off. This is a life-threatening condition and requires immediate repair.

Symptoms for these complications include:

  • fever
  • sudden pain that progressively worsens
  • nausea or vomiting
  • a bulge that turns to a dark color, such as red or purple
  • inability to pass gas or make bowel movements

Treating  a hernia?

Surgery is the most likely treatment for relieving large or painful hernias. Your doctor may also recommend surgery as a preventive measure, to ensure there are no complications later on. Surgical options range from minimally invasive surgery to open surgery.

Open surgery

Open surgery involves a small incision, pushing the protruding tissue back into your body and securing the incision so the tissue doesn’t herniate again.

This often requires the surgeon to strengthen the herniated area with mesh. Once the tissue is in its rightful place, the incision is closed with stitches or stapled.

 Image result for inguinal hernia images

This procedure is typically performed with local anesthesia, general anesthesia, or sedation.

Rest is recommended, however, you should move around to encourage proper circulation and improve recovery. Be careful not to overexert yourself, as it may still be a few weeks until you can return to your regular levels of activity.

Depending on the site of your hernia, your surgeon will give you specific instructions on what activities you can do and when you can return to exercising and other regular activities.

Minimally invasive surgery

Minimally invasive surgery, also known as laparoscopy, involves a series of small incisions. A gas is used to inflate the affected area, which makes it easier for the surgeon to see the structures to be treated.

Another tube with a small camera will then be inserted into one of the incisions, with the others serving as entry points for the surgeon’s tools.

This procedure is typically performed with general anesthesia. Those eligible for minimally invasive surgery tend to experience less post-op discomfort, as well as less scarring.

You may also be able to return to regular levels of activity sooner than those who have open surgery.

Other options

Another option is watchful waiting, where you simply wait to see if your hernia symptoms go away or get worse.

A hernia truss or abdominal binder may also be useful. These are supportive braces designed to keep the hernia in place and prevent it from getting worse.

Abdominal/ Umbilical Hernia Belt for men & women

Image result for inguinal hernia images

Conclusion:

Although many hernia types aren’t considered dangerous, they don’t get better on their own and can lead to life-threatening situations if left untreated.

Talk to your doctor if you think you’re experiencing any of the symptoms of a hernia. They can provide a personalized solution to your situation.

You should seek immediate medical attention if you’re experiencing any of the symptoms of a strangulated or incarcerated hernia, such as very painful bulge and if the bulge is red or purple.

Or

Contact us on query@gtsmeditour.com if you are experiancing  any of the symptoms & get a complementary  second opinion from our multi specialty hospital healthcare professional at the earliest.

 

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)

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OVERVIEW

Introduction:

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a health problem that affects 1 in 10 women of childbearing age. Women with PCOS have a hormonal imbalance and metabolism problems that may affect their overall health and appearance. PCOS is also a common and treatable cause of infertility.

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), also known as polycystic ovarian syndrome, is a common health problem caused by an imbalance of reproductive hormones. The hormonal imbalance creates problems in the ovaries. The ovaries make the egg that is released each month as part of a healthy menstrual cycle. With PCOS, the egg may not develop as it should or it may not be released during ovulation as it should be.

How PCOS affects your body

Having higher-than-normal androgen levels can affect your fertility and other aspects of your health.

Infertility

To get pregnant, you have to ovulate. Women who don’t ovulate regularly don’t release as many eggs to be fertilized. PCOS is one of the leading causes of infertility in women (12).

Metabolic syndrome

Up to 80 percent of women with PCOS are overweight or obese (13Trusted Source). Both obesity and PCOS increase your risk for high blood sugar, high blood pressure, low HDL (“good”) cholesterol, and high LDL (“bad”) cholesterol.

Together, these factors are called metabolic syndrome, and they increase the risk for heart disease, diabetes, and stroke.

 

Sleep apnea

This condition causes repeated pauses in breathing during the night, which interrupt sleep.

Sleep apnea is more common in women who are overweight — especially if they also have PCOS. The risk for sleep apnea is 5 to 10 times higher in obese women with PCOS than in those without PCOS (14).

Endometrial cancer

During ovulation, the uterine lining sheds. If you don’t ovulate every month, the lining can build up.

A thickened uterine lining can increase your risk for endometrial cancer (15).

Depression

Both hormonal changes and symptoms like unwanted hair growth can negatively affect your emotions. Many with PCOS end up experiencing depression and anxiety

The 3 main causes of PCOS are:

  • Irregular period– which means your ovaries do not regularly release eggs (ovulation)
  • excess androgen – high levels of “male” hormones in your body, which may cause physical signs such as excess facial or body hair
  • polycystic ovaries – your ovaries become enlarged and contain many fluid-filled sacs (follicles) that surround the eggs (but despite the name, you do not actually have cysts if you have PCOS)

If you have at least 2 of these features, you may be diagnosed with PCOS.

Few of the common of the symptoms of PCOS include:

They can include:

  1. irregular periods or no periods at all
  2. difficulty getting pregnant as a result of irregular ovulation or failure to ovulate
  3. excessive hair growth (hirsutism) – usually on the face, chest, back or buttocks
  4. weight gain
  5. thinning hair and hair loss from the head
  6. oily skin or acne

 Causes of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)?

The exact cause of PCOS is unknown, but it often runs in families.

It’s related to abnormal hormone levels in the body, including high levels of insulin.

Insulin is a hormone that controls sugar levels in the body.Many women with PCOS are resistant to the action of insulin in their body and produce higher levels of insulin to overcome this.This contributes to the increased production and activity of hormones like testosterone.Being overweight or obese also increases the amount of insulin your body produces.

Diagnosis criteria

A diagnosis of PCOS can usually be made if other rare causes of the same symptoms have been ruled out and you meet at least 2 of the following 3 criteria:

you have irregular periods or infrequent periods – this indicates that your ovaries do not regularly release eggs (ovulate) 

blood tests showing you have high levels of “male hormones”, such as testosterone (or sometimes just the signs of excess male hormones, even if the blood test is normal)

scans showing you have polycystic ovaries

As only 2 of these need to be present to diagnose PCOS, you will not necessarily need to have an ultrasound scan before the condition can be confirmed.

Managing PCOS

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) cannot be cured, but the symptoms can be managed.

Treatment options can vary because someone with PCOS may experience a range of symptoms, or just 1.

The main treatment options are discussed in more detail below.

Lifestyle changes

In overweight women, the symptoms and overall risk of developing long-term health problems from PCOS can be greatly improved by losing excess weight.

Weight loss of just 5% can lead to a significant improvement in PCOS.

You can find out whether you’re a healthy weight by calculating your body mass index (BMI), which is a measurement of your weight in relation to your height.

A normal BMI is between 18.5 and 24.9. Use the BMI healthy weight calculator to work out whether your BMI is in the healthy range.

You can lose weight by exercising regularly and eating a healthy, balanced diet.

Your diet should include plenty of fruit and vegetables, (at least 5 portions a day), whole foods (such as wholemeal bread, wholegrain cereals and brown rice), lean meats, fish and chicken.

Your GP may be able to refer you to a dietitian if you need specific dietary advice.

Read more about losing weight, healthy eating and exercise.

Medications

A number of medications are available to treat different symptoms associated with PCOS.

These are described below.

Irregular or absent periods

The contraceptive pills may be recommended to induce regular periods, or periods may be induced using an intermittent course of progestogen tablets

Fertility problems

With treatment, most women with PCOS are able to get pregnant.

The majority of women can be successfully treated with a short course of tablets taken at the beginning of each cycle for several cycles.

If these are not successful, you may be offered injections or IVF treatment. There’s an increased risk of a multiple pregnancy (rarely more than twins) with these treatments.

Unwanted hair growth and hair loss

Medications to control excessive hair growth (hirsutism) and hair loss (alopecia).

These medications work by blocking the effects of “male hormones”, such as testosterone, and some also suppress production of these hormones by the ovaries.

Surgery

A minor surgical procedure called laparoscopic ovarian drilling (LOD) may be a treatment option for fertility problems associated with PCOS that do not respond to medication.

Pregnancy risks

If you have PCOS, you have a higher risk of pregnancy complications, such as high blood pressure (hypertension), pre-eclampsia, gestational diabetes and miscarriage.

These risks are particularly high if you’re obese. If you’re overweight or obese, you can lower your risk by losing weight before trying for a baby.

Take away:

PCOS can disrupt a woman’s menstrual cycles and make it harder to get pregnant. High levels of male hormones also lead to unwanted symptoms like hair growth on the face and body.

Lifestyle interventions are the first treatments doctors recommend for PCOS, and they often work well. Weight loss can treat PCOS symptoms and improve the odds of getting pregnant. Diet and aerobic exercise are two effective ways to lose weight.

Medicines are an option if lifestyle changes don’t work. Birth control pills and metformin can both restore more normal menstrual cycles and relieve PCOS symptoms.

further any query relevant please email us on query@gtsmeditour.com & get opinion from best multi specialty hospitals.

Suggested Reading: ovarian cancer | cervical cancer

Obstructive Sleep Apnea(OSA)

Image result for obstructive sleep apnea

Obstructive Sleep Apnea(OSA) is a sleep disorder that causes breathing to repeatedly stop and start during sleep.This occurs because of narrowed or blocked airways.

It is the most common type of sleep-disordered breathing and is characterized by recurrent episodes of upper airway collapse during sleep The disorder results in decreased oxygen in the blood and can briefly awaken sleepers throughout the night

It is the most common type of sleep-disordered breathing and is characterized by recurrent episodes of upper airway collapse during sleep

Signs and symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea include:

  • Excessive daytime sleepiness
  • Loud snoring
  • Observed episodes of stopped breathing during sleep
  • Abrupt awakenings accompanied by gasping or choking
  • Awakening with a dry mouth or sore throat
  • Morning headache
  • Difficulty concentrating during the day
  • Experiencing mood changes, such as depression or irritability
  • High blood pressure
  • Nighttime sweating
  • Decreased libido
  • If you have OSA, you usually begin snoring heavily soon after falling asleep.

The snoring often becomes very loud.Snoring is interrupted by a long silent period while your breathing stops.

The silence is followed by a loud snort and gasp, as you attempt to breathe.

This pattern repeats throughout the night.

Most people with OSA do not know their breathing starts and stops during the night. Usually, a sleep partner or other family members hear the loud snoring, gasping, and snorting. Snoring can be loud enough to hear through walls. Sometimes, people with OSA wake up gasping for air.

Causes

Obstructive sleep apnea occurs when the muscles in the back of your throat relax too much to allow normal breathing. These muscles support structures including the back of the roof of your mouth (soft palate), the triangular piece of tissue hanging from the soft palate (uvula), the tonsils and the tongue.

When the muscles relax, your airway narrows or closes as you breathe in and breathing may be inadequate for 10 seconds or longer. This may lower the level of oxygen in your blood and cause a buildup of carbon dioxide.

Your brain senses this impaired breathing and briefly rouses you from sleep so that you can reopen your airway. This awakening is usually so brief that you don’t remember it.

You can awaken with shortness of breath that corrects itself quickly, within one or two deep breaths. You may make a snorting, choking or gasping sound.

This pattern can repeat itself five to 30 times or more each hour, all night long. These disruptions impair your ability to reach the desired deep, restful phases of sleep, and you’ll probably feel sleepy during your waking hours.

People with obstructive sleep apnea may not be aware that their sleep was interrupted. In fact, many people with this type of sleep apnea think they slept well all night.

Obstructive Sleep Apnea In Children

In children, causes of obstructive sleep apnea often include enlarged tonsils or adenoids and dental conditions such as a large overbite. Less common causes include a tumor or growth in the airway, and birth defects such as Down syndrome and Pierre-Robin syndrome. Down Syndrome causes enlargement of the tongue, adenoids and tonsils and there is decreased muscle tone in the upper airway. Pierre-Robin syndrome actually has a small lower jaw and the tongue tends to ball up and fall to the back of the throat. Although childhood obesity may cause obstructive sleep apnea, it’s much less commonly associated with the condition than adult obesity.

Risk factors

Anyone can develop obstructive sleep apnea. However, certain factors put you at increased risk, including:

  • Excess weight.

Most but not all people with obstructive sleep apnea are overweight. Fat deposits around the upper airway may obstruct breathing. Medical conditions that are associated with obesity, such as hypothyroidism and polycystic ovary syndrome, also can cause obstructive sleep apnea.However, not everyone with obstructive sleep apnea is overweight and vice versa. Thin people can develop the disorder, too.Narrowed airway. You may inherit naturally narrow airways. Or your tonsils or adenoids may become enlarged, which can block your airway.

  • High blood pressure (hypertension).

 Obstructive sleep apnea is relatively common in people with hypertension.

  • Chronic nasal congestion. Obstructive sleep apnea occurs twice as often in those who have consistent nasal congestion at night, regardless of the cause. This may be due to narrowed airways.

Smoking.

People who smoke are more likely to have obstructive sleep apnea.

  • Diabetes.

Obstructive sleep apnea may be more common in people with diabetes.

  • Sex.

In general, men are twice as likely as premenopausal women to have obstructive sleep apnea. The frequency of obstructive sleep apnea increases in women after menopause.

  • A family history of sleep apnea. If you have family members with obstructive sleep apnea, you may be at increased risk.
  • Asthma. Research has found an association between asthma and the risk of obstructive sleep apnea.

 

Complications

Obstructive sleep apnea is considered a serious medical condition. Complications may include:

Daytime fatigue and sleepiness. The repeated awakenings associated with obstructive sleep apnea make normal, restorative sleep impossible.

People with obstructive sleep apnea often experience severe daytime drowsiness, fatigue and irritability. They may have difficulty concentrating and find themselves falling asleep at work, while watching TV or even when driving. They may also be at higher risk of work-related accidents.

Children and young people with obstructive sleep apnea may do poorly in school and commonly have attention or behavior problems.

Cardiovascular problems. Sudden drops in blood oxygen levels that occur during obstructive sleep apnea increase blood pressure and strain the cardiovascular system. Many people with obstructive sleep apnea develop high blood pressure (hypertension), which can increase the risk of heart disease.

The more severe the obstructive sleep apnea, the greater the risk of coronary artery disease, heart attack, heart failure and stroke.

Obstructive sleep apnea increases the risk of abnormal heart rhythms (arrhythmias). These abnormal rhythms can lower blood pressure. If there’s underlying heart disease, these repeated multiple episodes of arrhythmias could lead to sudden death.

 

Complications with medications and surgery. Obstructive sleep apnea also is a concern with certain medications and general anesthesia. These medications, such as sedatives, narcotic analgesics and general anesthetics, relax your upper airway and may worsen your obstructive sleep apnea.

If you have obstructive sleep apnea, you may experience worse breathing problems after major surgery, especially after being sedated and lying on your back. People with obstructive sleep apnea may be more prone to complications after surgery.

Before you have surgery, tell your doctor if you have obstructive sleep apnea or symptoms related to obstructive sleep apnea. If you have obstructive sleep apnea symptoms, your doctor may test you for obstructive sleep apnea prior to surgery.

Eye problems. Some research has found a connection between obstructive sleep apnea and certain eye conditions, such as glaucoma. Eye complications can usually be treated.

Sleep-deprived partners. Loud snoring can keep those around you from getting good rest and eventually disrupt your relationships. Some partners may even choose to sleep in another room. Many bed partners of people who snore are sleep deprived as well.

 

Diagnosis:

A sleep specialist may conduct additional evaluations to diagnose your condition, determine the severity of your condition and plan your treatment. The evaluation may involve overnight monitoring of your breathing and other body functions as you sleep.

A sleep specialist may conduct additional evaluations to diagnose your condition, determine the severity of your condition and plan your treatment. The evaluation may involve overnight monitoring of your breathing and other body functions as you sleep.

Tests to detect obstructive sleep apnea include:

Polysomnography.

During this sleep study, you’re hooked up to equipment that monitors your heart, lung and brain activity, breathing patterns, arm and leg movements, and blood oxygen levels while you sleep.

You may have a full-night study, in which you’re monitored all night, or a split-night sleep study.

In a split-night sleep study, you’ll be monitored during the first half of the night. If you’re diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea, staff may wake you and give you continuous positive airway pressure for the second half of the night.

Polysomnography can help your doctor diagnose obstructive sleep apnea and adjust positive airway pressure therapy, if appropriate.

This sleep study can also help rule out other sleep disorders that can cause excessive daytime sleepiness but require different treatments, such as leg movements during sleep (periodic limb movements) or sudden bouts of sleep during the day (narcolepsy).

Home sleep apnea testing. Under certain circumstances, your doctor may provide you with an at-home version of polysomnography to diagnose obstructive sleep apnea. This test usually involves measurement of airflow, breathing patterns and blood oxygen levels, and possibly limb movements and snoring intensity.

 

Treatment

  • Lifestyle changes

For milder cases of obstructive sleep apnea, your doctor may recommend lifestyle changes:

  • Lose weight if you’re overweight.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Drink alcohol moderately, if at all, and don’t drink several hours before bedtime.
  • Quit smoking.
  • Use a nasal decongestant or allergy medications.
  • Don’t sleep on your back.

Avoid taking sedative medications such as anti-anxiety drugs or sleeping pills.

If these measures don’t improve your sleep or if your apnea is moderate to severe, then your doctor may recommend other treatments. Certain devices can help open up a blocked airway. In other cases, surgery may be necessary.

Therapies

 

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Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP)

An oral device or Non Invasive Device.

Positive airway pressure. If you have obstructive sleep apnea, you may benefit from positive airway pressure. In this treatment, a machine delivers air pressure through a piece that fits into your nose or is placed over your nose and mouth while you sleep.

Positive airway pressure reduces the number of respiratory events that occur as you sleep, reduces daytime sleepiness and improves your quality of life.

The most common type is called continuous positive airway pressure, or CPAP (SEE-pap). With this treatment, the pressure of the air breathed is continuous, constant and somewhat greater than that of the surrounding air, which is just enough to keep your upper airway passages open. This air pressure prevents obstructive sleep apnea and snoring.

Although CPAP is the most consistently successful and most commonly used method of treating obstructive sleep apnea, some people find the mask cumbersome, uncomfortable or loud. However, newer machines are smaller and less noisy than older machines and there are a variety of mask designs for individual comfort.

Also, with some practice, most people learn to adjust the mask to obtain a comfortable and secure fit. You may need to try different types to find a suitable mask. Several options are available, such as nasal masks, nasal pillows or face masks.

If you’re having particular difficulties tolerating pressure, some machines have special adaptive pressure functions to improve comfort. You also may benefit from using a humidifier along with your CPAP system.

CPAP may be given at a continuous (fixed) pressure or varied (autotitrating) pressure. In fixed CPAP, the pressure stays constant. In autotitrating CPAP, the levels of pressure are adjusted if the device senses increased airway resistance.

CPAP is more commonly used because it’s been well studied for obstructive sleep apnea and has been shown to effectively treat obstructive sleep apnea. However, for people who have difficulty tolerating fixed CPAP, BPAP or autotitrating CPAP may be worth a try.

Don’t stop using your positive airway pressure machine if you have problems. Check with your doctor to see what adjustments you can make to improve its comfort.

In addition, contact your doctor if you still snore despite treatment, if you begin snoring again or if your weight goes up or down by 10% or more.

Mouthpiece (oral device). Though positive airway pressure is often an effective treatment, oral appliances are an alternative for some people with mild or moderate obstructive sleep apnea. These devices may reduce your sleepiness and improve your quality of life.

These devices are designed to keep your throat open. Some devices keep your airway open by bringing your lower jaw forward, which can sometimes relieve snoring and obstructive sleep apnea. Other devices hold your tongue in a different position.

If you and your doctor decide to explore this option, you’ll need to see a dentist experienced in dental sleep medicine appliances for the fitting and follow-up therapy. A number of devices are available. Close follow-up is needed to ensure successful treatment.

Surgery or other procedures

Surgery is usually considered only if other therapies haven’t been effective or haven’t been appropriate options for you. Surgical options may include:

Surgical removal of tissue. Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (UPPP) is a procedure in which your doctor removes tissue from the back of your mouth and top of your throat. Your tonsils and adenoids may be removed as well. UPPP usually is performed in a hospital and requires a general anesthetic.

Doctors sometimes remove tissue from the back of the throat with a laser (laser-assisted uvulopalatoplasty) or with radiofrequency energy (radiofrequency ablation) to treat snoring. These procedures don’t treat obstructive sleep apnea, but they may reduce snoring.

Upper airway stimulation. This new device is approved for use in people with moderate to severe obstructive sleep apnea who can’t tolerate CPAP or BPAP.

A small, thin impulse generator (hypoglossal nerve stimulator) is implanted under the skin in the upper chest. The device detects your breathing patterns and, when necessary, stimulates the nerve that controls movement of the tongue.

Studies have found that upper airway stimulation leads to significant improvement in obstructive sleep apnea symptoms and improvements in quality of life.

 

Jaw surgery (maxillomandibular advancement). In this procedure, the upper and lower parts of your jaw are moved forward from the rest of your facial bones. This enlarges the space behind the tongue and soft palate, making obstruction less likely.

Surgical opening in the neck (tracheostomy). You may need this form of surgery if other treatments have failed and you have severe, life-threatening obstructive sleep apnea.

 

During a tracheostomy, your surgeon makes an opening in your neck and inserts a metal or plastic tube through which you breathe. Air passes in and out of your lungs, bypassing the blocked air passage in your throat.

Implants. This minimally invasive treatment involves placement of three tiny polyester rods in the soft palate. These inserts stiffen and support the tissue of the soft palate and reduce upper airway collapse and snoring. This treatment is recommended only for people with mild obstructive sleep apnea.

Other types of surgery may help reduce snoring and sleep apnea by clearing or enlarging air passages, including:

Nasal surgery to remove polyps or straighten a crooked partition between your nostrils (deviated septum)

Surgery to remove enlarged tonsils or adenoids

Few Myths and Facts About Obstructive Sleep Apnea

Sleep Apnea Is Just Snoring

Myth. Snoring can be a symptom of the sleep disorder, but there’s a big difference between the two. People with the condition actually stop breathing up to 400 times throughout the night. These pauses last 10 to 30 seconds, and they’re usually followed by a snort when breathing starts again. This breaks your sleep cycle and can leave you tired during the day.

Sleep Apnea Is No Big Deal

Myth. All those breaks in sleep take a toll on your body and mind. When the condition goes untreated, it’s been linked to job-related injuries, car accidents, heart attacks, and strokes.

It Blocks Your Breathing

Fact. The most common type of the disorder is obstructive sleep apnea, or OSA. It happens when your tongue, tonsils, or other tissues in the back of the throat block your airway. When you try to breathe in, the air can’t get through. Central sleep apnea is less common than OSA. It means the brain doesn’t always signal the body to breathe when it should

Only Older People Get It

Myth. Doctors estimate that more than 18 million Americans have sleep apnea. It’s more common after age 40, but it can affect people of all ages. You’re more likely to have the condition if you’re overweight, a man, African-American, or Latino. The disorder also tends to run in families.

Alcohol Will Help You Sleep

Myth. A nightcap may make you drowsy, but it won’t help you get the quality rest you need. Alcohol relaxes the muscles in the back of your throat. That makes it easier for the airway to become blocked in people with sleep apnea. Sleeping pills have the same effect.

Surgery Is the Surest Way to Fix Apnea

Myth. For some people, an operation may be able to cure OSA. A good example is a child with large tonsils that block her airway. Doctors can remove the tonsils to solve the problem. Some adults can improve their symptoms with surgery to shrink or stiffen floppy tissues. But that’s not a good choice for everyone. Talk to your doctor about the pros and cons of an operation before you go that route.

CPAP Is an Effective Treatment

Fact. It stands for continuous positive airway pressure. A CPAP machine blows a steady stream of air into your airway. You can adjust the flow until it’s strong enough to keep your airway open while you sleep. It’s the most common treatment for adults with moderate to severe OSA.

Suggested Reading : Sleep Apnea

Naturopathy

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Naturopathic medicine is a system that uses natural remedies to help the body heal itself. It embraces many therapies, Like;

  • Herbs,
  • Massage,
  • Acupuncture,
  • Exercise, 
  • Nutritional counseling.

Ayurvedic or Indian Naturopathy has been around for over 3000 years, first mentioned in the Atharv Vedathe ancient texts that map out an entire system of indigenous natural medicine. Naturopathy treatments have seen a resurgence in this modern era across the world.

A number of people today, frustrated with the tenuous cycles of medication and over-medication, see Naturopathy as return to the gentle loving lap of mother nature. Naturopathic treatments are gentle, effective treatments that are completely organic and drug-free.

 This system of medicine sees the balancing of five bodily elemental energies i.e.

  • Jal -Water
  • Vayu – Air
  • Akash -Sky
  • Agni – Fire 

Prithvi (Earth). Together they constitute the Panchamahabhuta – the corporeal energy of life.

Few of the treatments  based on Panchamahabhuta:

Earth – Mud baths, Mud packs.

Water – Hydrotherapeutic methods in the form of Baths, Jets, Douches, Packs, Compresses, Immersions .

Air – Breathing exercises, Outdoor walking, Open air baths.

Fire – Sun baths, Thermoleum baths, Magnetised water, Colour charged oils / water.

Ether – Fasting therapy.

The goal of naturopathic medicine is to treat the whole person — that means mind, body, and spirit. It also aims to heal the root causes of an illness — not just stop the symptoms.

All chronic ailments like diabetes, high blood pressure, migraine headaches, all the respiratory disorders, orthopedic ailments, neurological conditions, etc  can be cured by Naturopathy.

Who Practices It?

You can find people who support naturopathic medicine in hospitals, clinics, community centers, and private offices. They fall into three groups, and they all have different educations and backgrounds:

Naturopathic physicians: These are also called naturopathic doctors (ND) or doctors of naturopathic medicine (NMD). They usually attend an accredited four-year, graduate-level school. They learn the same basic sciences as conventional medical doctors (MD). But they also study nutrition, psychology, and complementary therapies such as herbal medicine and homeopathy. Some states and territories require naturopathic doctors to become licensed. That means they have to pass an exam to practice and take continuing education classes.

Traditional naturopaths: These practitioners don’t attend an accredited naturopathic medical school or receive a license. Their education varies widely.

Healthcare providers: Some medical doctors, dentists, doctors of osteopathy, chiropractors, and nurses have training in naturopathic medicine. Many are either NDs or they studied naturopathy.

Before choosing a naturopathic practitioner, ask about his education or training and your state’s licensing requirements.

Naturopathic Therapies is used for most health issues. Some of the more common ones include:

  • Allergies
  • Headaches
  • Fertility issues
  • Digestive problems
  • Obesity
  • Hormonal imbalances
  • Chronic pain
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Diabetes
  • Arthritis
  • Sleep Disorders

You don’t have to be sick to try naturopathy. You may just want to boost your overall health or prevent an illness.

Other Naturopathic Therapies:

  • Oriental healing techniques like Reflexology, Acupressure, Acupuncture and Auriculotherapy.
  • Food and Nutrition.
  • Magnetotherapy.
  • Physiotherapy.
  • Chromotherapy.

A few naturopathic treatments have known side effects and risks:

Supplements (vitamin and herbal): Some of these may interfere with prescription medications. In large doses, certain vitamins may raise your risk of a disease like cancer.

Spinal adjustments: As part of naturopathic manipulative treatment, your practitioner may apply pressure to your spine. This can damage arteries, nerves, bones, and spinal discs. In rare cases, it may lead to a stroke.

Detox diets: These treatments are meant to rid your body of toxins. They involve cutting out certain foods or fasting. That means going for periods without eating. This can be dangerous for people with some chronic conditions, like diabetes. If you’re on the diet for a long time, you run the risk of not getting enough vital nutrients.

Tell your doctor if you’re thinking about trying naturopathy. He can make sure the treatments are safe and don’t interact with any other drugs you’re taking. You shouldn’t stop or delay your conventional medical care because of naturopathic medicine.

Naturopathy Can Be a Beneficial Complement to Women’s Health Care

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Naturopathy is an alternative medical system based on the body’s ability to heal itself without the use of drugs and with treatment techniques such as herbal supplements, stress reduction, exercise therapy, acupuncture, and dietary and lifestyle changes.

A naturopathic doctor treats each individual patient as a whole, not only assessing physical health but also mental and emotional health, as well as genetic, environmental, and societal factors.

female patients, especially those in their 40s experiencing menopause,  have a noted a pattern of multiple obligations and responsibilities taking a toll on their health, and they don’t know how to manage them day-to-day.

“They may be working and they may have a ton of unpaid work, like taking care of family, their mom and dad, grandchildren,” “It’s a lot on the plate for women this age.”

Who Can Use It?

It’s a good option for people who might not find relief for their chronic illness through traditional medicine.

In many cases, you can use both conventional and naturopathic medicine to treat an illness. For example, naturopathic remedies may help ease the side effects of chemotherapy. But remember to tell your regular doctor about any naturopathic treatments you’re on. And, you should tell your naturopathic doctor about your conventional medications. That way, both providers can work as a team for your health.

Caution:

Don’t use it for an emergency or issue that requires a visit to the hospital, like major surgery. Nor should it be used in place of conventional medicine for serious conditions, like cancer and heart disease.

 

Flaxseed – Super Food

 

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Lets read how?

Flaxseed is a plant-based food that provides healthful fat, antioxidants, and fiber. Some people call it a “functional food,” which means that a person can eat it to boost their health.

People grew flax as a crop in ancient Egypt and China. In Asia, it has had a role in Ayurvedic medicine for thousands of years.

Flaxseeds are high in fiber, with 4 grams of fiber per 2 tablespoons of whole or ground flaxseeds. The soluble fiber in flaxseeds helps slow down the emptying of the stomach into the small intestine, increasing the absorption of nutrients. This type of fiber also decreases risk of cardiovascular disease by increasing the amount of HDL, the ‘good’ type of cholesterol & lung disease

Omega-3 essential fatty acids, “good” fats that have been shown to have heart-healthy effects. Each tablespoon of ground flaxseed contains about 1.8 grams of plant omega-3s.

Lignans, which have both plant estrogen and antioxidant qualities. Flaxseed contains 75 to 800 times more lignans than other plant foods.

Fiber. Flaxseed contains both the soluble and insoluble types.

Possible health benefits 

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flax seed contains some nutrients that may have various health benefits.

Like other plant-based foods, flaxseed is rich in antioxidants. These can help prevent disease by removing molecules called free radicals from the body.

Free radicals occur as a result of natural processes and environmental pressures. If there are too many free radicals in the body, oxidative stress can develop, leading to cell damage and disease. Antioxidants help remove free radicals from the body.

Flaxseed is a good source of lignans, which appear to have antioxidant properties.

According to some scientists, flaxseed may be over 800 times richer in lignans than most other foods.

Reducing the risk of cancer

Flaxseed contains omega-3 fatty acids. Research suggests that these may help prevent different types of cancer cells from growing.

Flaxseed also contains lignans, which are antioxidants that may slow tumor growth by preventing them from forming new blood vessels.

Also, in 2018, the authors of a review concluded that flaxseed may help reduce the risk of breast cancer after menopause.

Lignans are a type of phytoestrogen, which is a plant-based nutrient that acts in a similar way to estrogen. There has been some concern that phytoestrogens may increase the risk of breast cancer, but recent research suggests that they may play a protective role.

Improving cholesterol and heart health

The American Heart Association (AHA) recommend eating more fiber and omega-3s to boost heart health. Lignans, too, may help prevent cardiovascular disease. Flaxseed contains all of these nutrients.

Flaxseed also contains phytosterols. Phytosterols have a similar structure to cholesterol, but they help prevent the absorption of cholesterol in the intestines.

Consuming phytosterols may therefore help reduce levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL), or “bad,” cholesterol in the body.

In 2010, researchers looked at the effect of flaxseed on the cholesterol levels of males with moderately high cholesterol. Participants took either a 20 milligram (mg) capsule containing lignans, a 100 mg capsule, or a placebo for 12 weeks.

Cholesterol levels fell after taking lignans, especially in those who took the 100 mg capsules.

The researchers behind a 2012 study involving 17 people found that consuming flaxseed lowered LDL cholesterol levels and helped the body remove fat, although they note that the overall diet may also play a role. The team suggested that dietary flaxseed may be useful for lowering cholesterol levels.

it has  also linked omega-3 oils, which are usually present in oily fish, to reductions in cardiovascular risk. Researchers have suggested that flaxseed could offer an alternative to marine sources of omega 3. This could make it a useful resource for people who follow a plant-based diet.

Easing the symptoms of arthritis

According to the Arthritis Foundation, flaxseed may help reduce joint pain and stiffness. Some people take it for rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, and Raynaud’s phenomenon.

They add that there is a lack of evidence to support its use for this purpose, but they say that the ALA in flaxseed may help reduce inflammation.

People can take it:

ground (one tablespoon per day)

as an oil (one to three tablespoons per day)

in capsules (1,300–3,000 mg per day)

Reducing hot flashes

In 2007, a team of scientists published results suggesting that flaxseed may help reduce the incidence or severity of hot flashes in women not using estrogen therapy during menopause.

In 2012, however, further research by the same team concluded that flaxseed did not, in fact, make any difference.

Diabetes

Lignans and other phytoestrogens may help reduce the risk of chronic conditions such as diabetes.

In 2013, scientists gave 25 people 0 g, 13 g, or 26 g of flaxseed every day for 12 weeks. The participants had prediabetes and were either males with obesity or overweight or females who had undergone menopause.

The 13 g dosage appeared to lower glucose and insulin levels and improve insulin sensitivity, but the other dosages did not have this effect.

Also, a 2016 rodent study suggested that the compounds in flaxseed may help reduce the incidence of type 1 diabetes and delay the onset of type 2 diabetes. These results may not be applicable to humans, however.

The same year, 99 people with prediabetes took 40 g or 20 g of flaxseed or no flaxseed and no placebo each day for 12 weeks. Consuming flaxseed appeared to reduce blood pressure, but it did not improve blood sugar levels or insulin resistance.

Preventing constipation

Flaxseed is a good source of insoluble fiber, which does not dissolve in water, instead remaining in the digestive tract after eating. There, it absorbs water and adds bulk, which may help promote regularity.

Also, too much flaxseed or flaxseed oil can cause diarrhea.

Which foods can help relieve constipation? Learn more here.

Beauty Benefits :

  • Firmer Face
  • Less Wrinkles
  • Stronger nails
  • Radiant Skin
  • Boost Hair GrowthImage result for flax seed beauty benefits

Other conditions

The studies reveal  flaxseed can help  with:

ovarian cancer

cardiovascular disease

metabolic syndrome

diabetes

asthma

inflammation

PCOS

Uses of flaxseed in Ayurvedic medicine include:

  • promoting overall health
  • restoring the skin’s pH balance
  • preventing chronic conditions, such as diabetes, atherosclerosis, and arthritis
  • providing protection from cancer etc

HOW TO USE FLAXSEEDS

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Flaxseeds and flaxseed oil have a pleasant nutty flavor that is easily incorporated into a variety of foods. Whole flaxseeds have a very tough outer shell, too tough for our teeth to break down. Whole flaxseeds are a good source of fiber but the beneficial ALA content is not available to be absorbed. Flaxseed oil contains the beneficial ALA, but no fiber or lignans. 1

To gain all the health benefits in flaxseeds, purchase ground flaxseed, or grind your own flaxseed using a clean coffee grinder. Store whole flaxseeds in an airtight container in a cool, dark spot for 6-12 months. Ground flaxseeds must be stored in the refrigerator or freezer to prevent the fat from becoming rancid, and should be consumed within 2-4 months. 1

Grinding and typical oven temperatures used in baking do not significantly decrease the amount of ALA in flaxseeds. Adding ground flaxseeds to bread and muffins, or purchasing commercially baked bread with added ground flaxseeds, increases the antioxidant content of the bread and lowers the glycemic index. 1

Flaxseed oil is easily destroyed by heat, light and oxygen. Look for flaxseed oil made from fresh pressed seeds that is bottled in dark containers. Store in the refrigerator to prevent rancidity and use only on cold foods or add to foods after cooking since it has a low smoke point. 3

Simple ways to add 1-2 tablespoons of ground flaxseeds to your foods each day:

  •  Sprinkle on cold or hot cereal
  • Stir into yogurt
  • Add to the dry ingredients in muffins and bread
  • Mix into casseroles
  • Add to smoothies or fruit/vegetable juice blends
  • Stir into thick soups like lentil soup or chili
  • Mix into salad dressings or sprinkle on vegetable salads

CAUTION

Due to the fiber content, start with 1-2 teaspoons of ground or whole flaxseeds per day to avoid gas, bloating, or constipation. Drink 1-2 glasses of water with every meal that contains whole or ground flaxseeds. Gradually increase the amount of whole or ground flaxseeds over several weeks to improve tolerance.

Talk with your healthcare provider before adding flaxseeds to your diet as they may decrease the absorption of some medications and may interfere with fish oil, omega-3 supplements, or anticoagulant medications.

Suggested Reading : Chocolates 

 

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