Treating Insomnia With Acupuncture

Fourteen-year old Derek came to me with trouble sleeping. He was a healthy, active young man, who had trouble getting to sleep at night, and many nights was awake for hours. He tried sleeping on the floor to “get comfortable”, and rearranging his bedcovers in a variety of ways, none of which helped him sleep. Derek had trouble getting up in the morning because he was starting his day exhausted from the lack of adequate sleep.

The incidence of insomnia is far-reaching. It can be an annoyance for most people at one time or another. For many, however, it’s a chronic problem that leaves its sufferers exhausted, irritable, and unable to handle the physical and emotional stresses of everyday life.

Sleeplessness comes in many forms. For people with mild insomnia, dropping off to sleep may be a problem. Many sufferers are able to fall asleep, but wake during the night and spend the early morning hours wide-awake. In the extreme, people who are plagued by severe insomnia may be sleepless all night long.

In for practitioners of acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine, insomnia is considered to be a disharmony between Yin and Yang, in which the Yang of daytime is unable to enter, or change into, the Yin of the evening and nighttime hours.

The principles of Yin and Yang can best be understood through the Chinese characters for each. The character for Yang was originally a pictograph representing the sunny side of the hill. It contains the radicals for mound, the sun above the horizon, and rays of light shining down from the sun. In contrast, the character for Yin contains the radicals for mound and the presence of clouds, indicating the shady side of the hill.

These characters tell us a lot about the nature of Yin and Yang. The sunny side of the hill, Yang, is warmer and brighter than the shady side, Yin, which is cooler, darker and moister. Yang represents fire, is active, and moves upward and outward. Yin represents water, is calm, and moves down and inward. Most important to this discussion of sleep, however, is that Yang represents the bright and active daytime hours, and Yin represents the quieter, darker nighttime hours.

During the day, Yang energy is strong, keeping us awake and alert and giving us the energy to conduct the activities necessary for each day. As the day moves into evening, the Yang energy begins to decline and turn inward, allowing us to relax and slow down. To be able to sleep, the Yang energy of the day must completely enter into the Yin aspect of the evening and nighttime hours. Therefore, normal sleep requires that the Yin and Yang energy of the body be in balance. Insomnia occurs when this balance is lost.

The Heart also plays an important role in our ability to sleep. In Chinese medicine, the Heart houses the spirit, which includes all thought processes, memory, emotions and the ability to sleep. During the night, the spirit also moves into the Yin, and people become calmer, quieter, and fall asleep. When the spirit is unable to move into the Yin, or when the spirit moves into Yin but is unable to quietly stay there all night, insomnia occurs.

For insomnia to occur, the spirit must be disturbed in some way. There are a variety of imbalances that may cause a disruption of the spirit, including heat, deficiency, or stagnation. The causes of these imbalances are often related to lifestyle, which means that there are changes that we can make on our own to sleep better. Common causes of insomnia in Traditional Chinese Medicine include emotions, diet, overwork, and a weak constitution.

Heat in the body is a common factor in insomnia. Heat is by nature Yang energy, which is active. Too much heat, or excess Yang, disturbs the Heart and spirit, making it difficult for Yang to transform into Yin at the end of the day, causing restlessness and irritability.

There are a number of patterns, or conditions, in Traditional Chinese Medicine that can cause heat. Excess heat from an external factor, such as a fever or the flu is one form. However, an occasional fever or an attack of the flu is short-lived, and not sufficient to cause chronic insomnia. Only when heat resides in the body long-term, will it ultimately disturb the Heart and spirit enough to interfere with sleep.

Heat may arise out of a deficiency of Yin energy. Remember, Yin is cool, moist and nourishing. When Yin is in short supply in the body, Yang becomes exuberant, causing heat and restlessness, disturbing the spirit and disrupting sleep. A classic example of this pattern is during menopause, when deficient heat in the form of hot flashes and night sweats accompany sleeplessness.

There are other substances in the body that can become deficient enough to cause insomnia. Qi (pronounced chee), described as life energy, or the transformative energy in all things, can become depleted. Blood is another substance that when deficient can cause insomnia. In Chinese medicine, Blood is considered the substance that nourishes the body and maintains muscle mass and fat. When Qi and/or Blood become depleted, the spirit is undernourished and unable to easily move into Yin and stay there during the entire night. Typically, a person suffering from insomnia due to deficiency may fall asleep easily, but wake during the night or have vivid, disturbing dreams.

Stagnation, especially of Qi, can also be responsible for insomnia. This type of insomnia is commonly associated with emotions. Qi normally moves smoothly throughout the body. However, strong emotions, especially anger, anxiety or depression, can impair the flow of Qi and cause it to stagnate. This stagnation over time turns into heat, disturbing the Heart and spirit, and causing insomnia. Frequently, people who can’t sleep because their “mind is running” all night are suffering from Qi stagnation.

The treatment of insomnia using Traditional Chinese Medicine might involve acupuncture, herbs, Tui Na (Chinese bodywork), and possibly diet therapy. If you suffer from insomnia, however, there are some changes you can make that may help you get a good night’s sleep.

-During the evening hours, try to move from Yang to Yin activities. For example, save exercise, studying, or physical work for earlier in the day. During the evening, quieter activities, such as reading and relaxing will help you move into Yin energy more easily.

-Wait a few hours after a large meal before you try to sleep. Eating too much food before bedtime can stagnate and interfere with your sleep.

-If you have trouble sleeping, avoid foods and drinks that contain caffeine for several hours before bedtime. Very spicy or heavy, greasy foods, if eaten regularly, may also cause insomnia.

-If emotions are causing sleeplessness, try visualizing yourself in a favorite, calming place, or systematically relax the muscles in each part of your body.

Keeping these principles in mind in working with Derek, I learned that he was instant messaging with his friends until he went to bed at about 11:00. Also, he had some issues that were causing him anxiety. I treated Derek twice with acupuncture and herbs and advised him to begin winding down for bed an hour or two earlier. This meant turning off the computer and reading before turning out his lights. After two treatments, Derek reported that he was able to get to sleep, and stay asleep all night.

Heart Attack Symptoms

Heart attacks seem to be sudden, but that’s not the truth. Signs and symptoms of a heart attack need to be recognized. These help in quick medical attention, as well as saving lives.

A common sign of an impending heart attack is discomfort or slight pain. The discomfort occurs mostly in the chest area. It is mild to start with and recurs at long intervals. The feeling of discomfort can be a sense of pressure, dizziness, squeezing of the chest and so on. Often this discomfort radiates to other parts of the upper body, like the arms, neck, and back. This discomfort is typically combined with breathlessness or difficulty breathing. Other symptoms of a heart attack are headache, dizziness, nausea and excessive sweating.

On the other hand, there are forms of heart attacks that are silent. These project no symptoms whatsoever. These happen to be even more dangerous and life-threatening than painful heart attacks. It is common among diabetics to suffer from silent heart attacks.

Sometimes, these symptoms are mistaken and ignored as indigestion, heartburn, stress and so on. In the best interests of health, it is better to pay attention to any such feeling and consult doctors.

Symptoms are different in each instance of a heart attack. However, the common symptoms, if paid attention to, will save many a life through early diagnosis and treatment.

Annually, approximately 1 million people in the United States suffer a heart attack. It is noteworthy that more than half of these people die within an hour of the onset of symptoms. Hence, the timely recognition of signs and emergency hospitalization is necessary.

Heart Disease, Obesity, and Diabetes (What Are The Real Causes Of This Epidemic?)

We are in the midst of an epidemic of obesity, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease, not to mention cancer and immune related diseases. What can we do about this tragedy? Let’s cover some general information.

Fossil remains from our hunter-gatherer ancestors show that they were lean, had strong dense bones, and no tooth decay. Evidence from cave drawings and coprolites shows that they ate a diet consisting mainly of fruit, nuts, and wild vegetables, and some meat. This diet is about the same as that of today’s hunter-gatherer tribes.

With the advent of agriculture, mankind’s diet shifted to a grain-based diet. Our hunter-gatherer ancestors probably ate some grain, having discovered that wheat and rye plants which grew wild, could yield a grain, which, when cooked, could be eaten. The agricultural revolution made it possible for grains to be the staple of the diet.

People began getting most of their calories and nutrients from grain about 10,000 years ago. Some 500 generations have lived since then. Geneticists say that it takes between 1,000 and 10,000 generations for any significant evolutionary change.

People whose diets consisted mainly of grains, had problems with their teeth, and likely had other health problems as well. The ancient Egyptians are a classic example of this. They subsisted mostly on grains. Mummies show tooth decay that is not found among hunter-gatherer tribes.

Grains are not unhealthy. In fact some, such as wheat or oats, are highly nutritious, providing high quality protein, along with many vitamins, minerals, and fiber. But they are a problem when they become the dominant food, at the expense of leafy vegetables and fruit. The real problem, however, comes when they are refined.

In the 1890s machines were invented that strip all the fiber and nutrition from grain, and extract sugar from cane, beets, or grain. The empty calorie was invented.

Empty calories deplete the body of nutrition. For every carbohydrate calorie the body burns, it needs a certain amount of nutrients. Chromium is needed to allow insulin to do its job, and certain B vitamins are needed to carry out the chemical reactions of metabolizing every gram of carbohydrate. Calcium is needed for certain metabolic reactions. These nutrients and many others are stripped from wheat to make white flour, sometimes simply called wheat flour, as opposed to whole wheat flour. Sugar is extracted from corn, beets, or cane and is added to most of our food and drinks, sometimes in large quantities. Consumption of refined sugar causes our bodies to rob nutrients from organs and bones in order to obtain the nutrients necessary for the assimilation and metabolizing of sugar.

Two hundred years ago the average American ate 10 or 12 pounds of sugar a year. The only sugar that most people consumed was what was naturally present in food. By 1928 sugar consumption was about 10 times what it was in 1828. In 1996 the average American consumed 152 pounds of sugar!

When scientists began studying the plaques in the arteries of people who died of heart diseases, they found fat and cholesterol deposits in these plaques and reasoned that it’s the fat and cholesterol in the diet that causes the problem. This simplistic reasoning was wrong and has been proven wrong by many clinical studies and statistical analyses. Heart attack rates do not correlate with the amount of fat and cholesterol consumed in a given population. But they do correlate strongly with the amount of refined carbohydrate and hydrogenated oil consumed. Type 2 diabetes also correlates strongly with refined carbohydrate consumption in a population. From the mid 60s to the mid 90s, the incidence of type 2 diabetes increased six-fold. A slight apparent increase may be due to better reporting of the disease or people being more aware of it, but this is a real epidemic and it is staggering! It is incredible for the incidence of a non-infectious disease to increase by a factor of six in forty years! This much change in only one or two generations can’t possibly be hereditary in nature.

In previous centuries people ate large amounts of butter and lard, beef, pork and lots of eggs. Despite the fact that large numbers of people lived into their sixties and beyond, heart attacks were very rare. The first heart attack in medical literature was described in a medical journal in 1912. Prior to the twentieth century heart attacks were so rare most doctors could practice a whole lifetime without seeing a heart attack victim.

The French eat a diet that is high in fat yet they suffer a heart disease rate 60% lower than Americans. Eskimos, the Masai in Africa, and the Icelanders, all ate a diet very high in fat but heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes were unknown to them until typical American diet was introduced to them. Then they began to suffer from these diseases at the same rate that we do. Yugoslavia and the Netherlands provide similar examples.

The two master hormones of metabolism are insulin and glucagon. These two hormones work in opposition to each other. Most people think only of blood sugar when they think of insulin, but it has many functions.

Functions of insulin:

1. Carries glucose into all cells (except red blood cells and cells that make up the lens of the eye)

2. Is essential in the conversion of protein and sugar into fat

3. Causes dietary fat to be stored in the fat cells

4. Puts metabolism into fat storage mode

5. Increases production of cholesterol

6. Causes the kidneys to retain water, potassium, and sodium

7. Stimulates the growth of the cells that line the inside of arteries, thus decreasing the inside diameter of the arteries.

8. Decreases the elasticity of the arteries

9. Converts glucose into glycogen (a form of carbohydrate that is stored in the liver and muscle tissues)

10. Carries amino acids into the cells

Functions of glucagon:

1. Stimulates the conversion of glycogen into glucose and releases it into the bloodstream

2. Converts protein and fat into glucose

3. Releases fat from fat cells to be burned for energy

4. Puts metabolism into the fat burning mode

5. Reduces production of cholesterol

6. Causes the kidneys to release water, potassium, and sodium

7. Reduces growth of the cells that line the inside of the arteries

8. Increases the elasticity of the arteriesv

9. Breaks down glycogen into glucose to be used for energy

10. Carries amino acids out of the cells

Without insulin the body could not survive long, because glucose wouldn’t be able to get into the cells. Without it, the body could not store fat for use when food is scarce. In its absence, a person could eat to their heart’s content and never gain weight. Our physiology has evolved into a complex system designed to store fat in times when food is plentiful and burn it when times are lean and food is hard to find.

When you eat a meal, the pancreas secretes insulin, which then shuttles the glucose (also amino acids, sodium, and potassium) into your cells. If there is an excess of glucose in the blood, some of it is stored as glycogen, and some is converted to fat and stored in the fat cells. If you don’t eat for several hours your blood sugar begins to fall. Your brain recognizes this and stimulates the pancreas to release glucagon, which stimulates the breakdown of glycogen that is stored in the liver and muscles. Glucagon enables us to burn our stores of fat and glycogen when we fast. Glycogen breaks down into glucose, thus keeping blood sugar from dropping any further. If you continue to fast, your reserves of glycogen will run out in a day or two. When it runs out, glucagon stimulates the release of fat from the fat cells and breaks down the fat into chemicals known as ketones. Your body can burn ketones for energy until you run out of fat.

The body is not equipped to deal with large amounts of sugar suddenly entering the bloodstream. This will cause the pancreas to overreact and produce too much insulin. After an initial rise in blood sugar and consequent burst of energy, the blood sugar will fall too low. If you don’t consume any more carbohydrate, your pancreas will secrete glucagon. This hormone will cause the blood sugar to slowly rise to normal levels by breaking down glycogen in the liver into glucose and releasing it into the bloodstream. Most people will consume more sugar-laden food or drink before their blood sugar returns to normal and cause another surge of insulin and repeat the cycle. Because of constantly high levels of insulin and low levels of glucagon, your LDL cholesterol (the so-called bad kind, and the only kind the liver makes) will go up. Your blood pressure will go up. Your body will be in a fat-storage mode.

When you were a child and you ate something sweet, your pancreas needed to secrete only a tiny amount of insulin in response to the rise in blood sugar. After years of consuming refined carbohydrate, the insulin receptors on your cells become less sensitive to insulin and your pancreas needed to secrete larger amounts to do the same job. This is called insulin resistance. Another cause of insulin resistance is chromium deficiency. Refined carbohydrate causes a deficiency in chromium as well as other trace minerals. Chromium is a critical component of the insulin receptors on the cell wall.

Lack of exercise also causes insulin resistance. And no doubt, some people have a genetic predisposition for insulin resistance, which is all the more reason for them to be careful how they eat and to make sure they get enough exercise. With the pancreas having to produce excessive amounts of insulin just to regulate blood sugar, you end up with all of the problems of hyperinsulinism. It is a matter of genetics as to which problem will hit you first, obesity, hypoglycemia, high blood pressure, or diabetes, etc, but sooner or later one or more of these problems will arise if you keep consuming refined carbohydrate. The body overproduces insulin in response to a rapidly rising blood sugar level; consequently blood sugar drops dramatically in a couple of hours. Many people who pass a glucose tolerance test have severe insulin resistance. They passed the test because their blood sugar checked out normal a couple hours after given a sugar solution, but their pancreas had to secrete abnormally large amounts of insulin to deal with a little bit of sugar.

Eventually a person gets to the point where the pancreas is producing as much insulin as it possibly can, but the cells in the body are so resistant to it that even a massive amount of insulin can’t bring blood sugar down. This person will fail the glucose tolerance test and be diagnosed with diabetes. Doctors will make matters worse if they prescribe insulin injections at this point in time, although sometimes drugs are given to make the body’s cells more sensitive to insulin. A change of diet and an exercise program will usually bring insulin sensitivity up to acceptable levels.

Type 2 diabetes should not be confused with type 1 diabetes. They are two different diseases. Type 1 diabetes is sometimes called juvenile onset diabetes, because it usually strikes a person when they are very young. It occurs when a virus or toxin (or even the child’s own immune system) destroys the insulin producing cells in the pancreas. Type 2, on the other hand, normally takes two or three decades of high consumption of refined carbohydrates before it becomes apparent. Type 2 diabetes can turn into type 1 if left unchecked because the insulin-producing cells (Beta cells) can become weakened and rendered nonfunctional by the continued over stimulation caused by a diet high in refined carbohydrate. This is known as beta cell burnout. When this occurs, the result is type 1 diabetes. With no insulin, blood sugar rises to dangerous levels and the hormone glucagon takes over. Without any insulin to oppose its actions, glucagon begins to waste away the body. The individual loses weight no matter how much they eat. They urinate excessively and are thirsty all the time. Cholesterol falls to dangerously low levels. At this point the individual has no choice but to inject insulin for the rest of their life.

Some will be genetically more prone to certain effects of hyperinsulinism than others. For instance, in some individuals obesity may be the first sign of hyperinsulinism. For others high blood pressure or high LDL cholesterol levels may be the first sign. In some individuals hypoglycemia will be the first symptom. But no matter what your genetic makeup, you can’t escape all of the effects of hyperinsulinism if it remains unchecked. You can’t change your genes but you can change your diet. And you can get off the couch and exercise a little.

Don’t be afraid to eat fat. The only types of fat that are unhealthy are altered or refined oil and hydrogenated oil. A deficiency of dietary fat is a dangerous condition and will kill you if prolonged. No properly done study has ever shown a convincing link between high fat consumption and heart disease. Fat is vital to the health of nerves, skin, the immune system, and just about everything else in your body. And fat is the only one of the three macronutrients (carbohydrate, fat, and protein) that does not stimulate the production of insulin when consumed. It makes you feel full, so you’ll eat less. Fat, like fiber, slows the digestion of protein and carbohydrate, thus blunting the rise of serum glucose that results from eating a meal. This is good because the insulin response is much slower and more even, and the person goes longer without feeling hungry again.

You should scrupulously avoid hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated oils they do not exist in nature, except in minute trace quantities in some meats. Trans fats (hydrogenated oils) have the unique property of lowering good cholesterol and raising the so-called bad cholesterol at the same time. They raise triglyceride levels. They also have an adverse affect on the body’s inflammatory system by disrupting the levels of certain substances in the body called eicosanoids. They suppress certain anti-inflammatory eicosanoids, and boost the level of inflammatory eicosanoids. This causes inflammation of the interior arterial wall. They also gum up the cell wall, adversely affecting cell receptors, including the insulin receptors. By reducing the efficiency of the insulin receptors they cause a person to become insulin resistant. As America’s consumption of saturated fat fell dramatically throughout the twentieth century, our consumption of trans-fats, refined oils and refined carbohydrates skyrocketed. The incidences of heart disease, stroke, and diabetes went through the roof.

The public has been led to believe that the refined, highly processed oils that line the shelves of the grocery store are healthy. Those bottles of golden colored oils have labels which tell you they are cholesterol-free or polyunsaturated. The truth is, those oils are very unhealthy. Do you think that the corn oil in the grocery store bears any resemblance at all to the oil that is inside a kernel of corn?

The problem begins with the method which is used to extract the oil from its source. The preferred method of the industry is to use extreme heat to extract the oil. The high temperatures used destroy most of the healthy components of the oil, including most of the vitamins. The molecular structure of the oil is altered. The oils are refined after extraction. The thick, heavy components are sold to companies that use vegetable oil as the base for certain lubricants or other industrial products. The light-colored oil that remains is an unhealthy and unnatural product that is devoid of nutrition.

Expeller-pressed oil is better than heat-extracted oil, but the high pressure used in the expeller process creates heat. Typically the temperature of the oil is raised to temperatures of 180 to 200 degrees Fahrenheit. Sometimes the nuts or seeds are heated to 250 F before being placed in the expeller, because the high temperature makes the expeller process more efficient.

Many oils are extracted by using a solvent, usually hexane. The problem with this is the solvent is impossible to completely remove from the oil after it is extracted.

When mechanical pressing is done without heating the source of oil first, it is called cold-pressed extraction. This method alters the oil less than any other form of extraction. Unfortunately, sesame seeds and olives are the only sources that will yield a large amount of oil from this process.

High serum cholesterol levels, in particular high levels of LDL cholesterol, have long been blamed for causing arteriosclerosis and heart disease, though there has never been any solid evidence to support this hypothesis. The truth is, the only kind of cholesterol that is damaging to the arteries is oxidized cholesterol. While it is true that LDL oxidizes easier than HDL, the level of oxidized cholesterol in the blood depends much more on the amount of antioxidant in the diet than on LDL cholesterol levels. LDL cholesterol is the only kind that your body can make and it is vital to life.

Cholesterol is a vital substance in the body. It is a major component of the myelin sheath which surrounds nerve cells. This myelin sheath insulates nerves like the insulation on wires. To put it in simplistic terms, this is what keeps your nerves from “short-circuiting.” Cholesterol is needed by the body to create many hormones, including estrogen and testosterone. It is needed by the liver to make bile, which is essential for the absorption of fats. Cholesterol under the skin is transformed into vitamin D by ultraviolet light penetrating the skin. It is an important component of the cell wall of all cells. Most of the cells in your body are capable of making their own cholesterol and will do so if the serum level of cholesterol falls too low.

The cholesterol that is found in arterial plaques is part of the healing process. It is a component of the scab that forms on a wound. Its presence in arterial plaque is an indication that the inner lining of the artery is damaged and in need of healing.

If your cholesterol is below 180, you’re at a high risk for stroke. Levels of 200 or even a little higher, are no cause for concern. If your ratio of LDL to HDL is too high, it is most likely because you are eating too much, or eating the wrong kinds of food. Smoking raises the level of LDL cholesterol because it is produced in response to the arterial damage caused by the chemicals in cigarette smoke. If your cholesterol is extremely high, say, above 300, it should be brought down by eliminating refined carbohydrate, hydrogenated and refined oils, and if you smoke, you should quit. High cholesterol is a symptom of artery disease, not a cause of it. Poisoning your liver with cholesterol-lowering drugs is not the answer.

Harvard researchers studied a community in Framingham Massachusetts for fifty years. This is the most thorough and carefully done study on diet thus far. They proved that heart disease correlates with high cholesterol levels and obesity. They showed that obesity and cholesterol levels were lowest in those who ate the most fat and cholesterol. They also showed that those who ate the most saturated fat had 76% less incidence of ischemic strokes. You won’t hear much about this study because it proved what the food and drug industries don’t want you to know.

Logic would dictate that if cholesterol is merely passively deposited in arteries, then it would be deposited in veins as well. Why are the coronary arteries the ones that seem most affected by cholesterol deposits? They are constantly flexing, and this action would actually impede any substance from collecting on their inner walls. The constant flexing of the coronary arteries causes tiny tears in the membrane if the artery is not healthy. If a person is lacking in certain nutrients, such as vitamin C, his arteries cannot be healthy. If a person eats too much protein, particularly animal protein, then the level of homocysteine in the blood will be high. Homocysteine is an amino acid that results from the breakdown proteins, particularly animal protein. It attacks the inner lining of the arteries. Vitamin B6 very effectively destroys homocysteine, but people who consume a lot of refined carbohydrate are deficient in B6, as well as the other B vitamins.

How much meat do we really need? Hunter-gatherer tribes don’t eat nearly as much meat as the average American, and they have strong, healthy bodies… People who become strict vegetarians live long, healthy lives as long as they stay away from processed foods.

Although some meat in the diet is probably not unhealthy, too much can cause a variety of problems, especially if the meat comes from steers which are fed a diet of corn and soy. One thing the meat industry doesn’t want you to know is that the fat in a steer that grazes on grass and eats no grain, resembles rather closely the fat in such cold-water fish as salmon.

As for milk, it is high in protein with all of the essential amino acids, and has lots of vitamins and minerals. In its raw, unprocessed state, milk is nutritious. The milk in the grocery stores has been pasteurized to kill germs. It has been homogenized to give it a consistent texture and keep the cream from floating to the top. Pasteurization destroys all of the enzymes and most of the vitamins. It also kills off bacteria that aid in its digestion. The enzymes that are destroyed in the pasteurization process aid in the absorption of minerals such as calcium.

Homogenization causes problems too. In order to understand why homogenization is bad, you need to know a little bit of about two substances, plasmalogen and Xanthine oxidase (XO for short). Plasmalogen is a type of phospholipid that is found in brain and spinal chord tissue, and on the inner lining of your arteries. The epithelial lining of the arteries is a protective coating on the inside of the artery. 30% of it is comprised of plasmalogen.

XO is an enzyme that is found in the liver, where it serves many functions, one of which is to destroy used plasmalogen. Plasmalogen and XO cannot exist in the same place for long because XO destroys plasmalogen. The liver has certain safety mechanisms for keeping XO from escaping into the bloodstream. Cow’s milk is very high in XO. In unhomogenized milk, the XO is destroyed in the stomach and intestines by the digestive process. The homogenization process creates extremely small balls of fat called liposomes. These liposomes form a protective layer around the XO, keeping the digestive juices from contacting it. The XO will then enter the blood stream intact and will be released from the liposomes. Plasmalogen in the inner lining of the arteries is gradually destroyed from years of consuming homogenized milk. The body tries to repair the damaged arterial wall by attaching cholesterol to it. That is why the plaques found on the arterial wall of heart disease patients are high in cholesterol. These plaques are wrongly blamed on fat and cholesterol in the diet.

Milk is promoted as something that will build strong bones. True, milk has a lot of calcium, but milk can actually cause a net loss of calcium from the body. Ponder for a moment the fact that the USA has the highest per capita consumption of dairy products and also has the highest per capita rate of osteoporosis. There are two reasons for this.

Milk is very high in phosphorus. Phosphorus competes with calcium for absorption. The ideal ratio of calcium to phosphorus for maximum absorption of both minerals in the human intestine is 2.3 to 1. Human milk has a calcium to phosphorus ratio of 2.3 to 1. Cow’s milk has a ratio of 1.3 to 1. The high phosphorus content causes most of the calcium to pass through the digestive tract without being absorbed. Raw milk has an enzyme that enhances calcium absorption, and thus will lessen this problem to some extent, but this enzyme is destroyed in the pasteurization process.

Incidentally, red meat, poultry, corn, and potatoes are all high in phosphorus. These foods can greatly reduce calcium absorption. The worst offender of all is of course, the soft drink, or soda. Sodas are extremely high in phosphorus, and if drunk with a meal, will ensure that little or no calcium will be absorbed from that meal.

Milk is a highly concentrated source of protein and too much protein causes loss of calcium. When too much protein is consumed in a meal, much of the excess amino acids from the protein are turned into uric acid (urea), though some will be turned into fat and stored in the body’s fat stores. The kidneys must attach calcium to the uric acid in order to deal with it. The parathyroid glands detect falling levels of serum calcium and excrete a hormone that causes calcium to leech from the bones into the blood. Maintaining a certain level of calcium in the bloodstream is critical and the body will take calcium from the bones to keep the blood level of calcium constant. This can cause a significant loss of calcium from the bones over time.

Drug companies and food companies don’t want you to know the real cause of high blood pressure or high cholesterol. They would lose a lot of money if enough people knew how easy it is to control these problems by lowering consumption refined carbohydrate and trans-fats. The Food industry makes far more money on processed, refined grain-based food than on meats and vegetables. Most doctors aren’t acting dishonestly when they prescribe these drugs. They only know what they are taught in medical school, and those schools are given huge grants by drug and food companies, consequently they have a big influence on what is taught

Most people don’t want to take the time to educate themselves about nutrition and are content to get their nutritional information from the news media. They hear or read about the latest study which provides evidence for this or that notion, but never see the big picture. Nor do most people have a basic knowledge of nutrition or physiology. An ignorant public is just what the food and drug industries want. They do not need to engage in some sort of conspiracy. They merely rely on the mental laziness and apathy of the average person. Nonetheless, there are some examples of what can be described as a conspiracy to keep certain facts from the public.

Kilmer McCully discovered that a protein called homocysteine causes plaque to form in arteries. The amino acid methionine is an important constituent of protein in meat. It breaks down into homocysteine in the bloodstream. Vitamin B6 converts it back to methionine. McCully discovered that a B6 deficiency caused by consuming refined carbohydrates elevates homocysteine levels dramatically. After publishing an article about this in 1977 he lost his grant support. He lost his positions at Harvard and Massachusetts General Hospital. He was a victim of the food industry. They did everything they could to keep his findings from being made known to the public. Now his discovery is acknowledged as being important, but it’s not well known to the public.

People have eaten diets high in fat and cholesterol since time immemorial. If you factor out those who died of infectious disease before the advent of vaccines and antibiotics, the life expectancy a couple of a hundred years ago was virtually the same as today. But people were not having heart attacks and strokes. Obese people were a small minority.

Prior to our modern diet, heart disease and type 2 diabetes were virtually unknown. Refined carbohydrate doesn’t even exist in nature, and is probably responsible for more death than cigarettes. There is nothing wrong with eating grains, as long as you eat whole grains, and eat plenty of vegetables and some fruit. Eat fruit, but avoid fruit juice because the extraction of juice creates a concentration of sugar. Eat plenty of green, leafy vegetables. Eat some meat if you like, but don’t go overboard. Don’t be afraid of eggs. They are very nutritious. Eat all types of nuts, especially raw. Peanuts, technically a legume, are very good for you. They are a loaded with protein and vitamins, and high in healthy fat. White potatoes are fine if eaten in small quantities and always with high-fiber vegetables. Eaten alone, potatoes will raise your blood sugar at a very fast rate and have been shown to increase the risk of type 2 diabetes if eaten often.

One other natural food to watch out for is honey. Consume it in small quantities. It does have the advantage of being an invert sugar, which is more slowly metabolized by the body than sucrose, but it is still sugar. It has a lot of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants if it is in a raw, unrefined state, but don’t go overboard with it. Consume it in moderation, if at all. Be aware that most of the honey sold in stores has been stripped of its vitamin and mineral content. And don’t worry about salt. Sodium only raises the blood pressure if you are deficient in potassium. The main rule is, avoid all refined carbohydrate, refined oil, hydrogenated oil and partially hydrogenated oil. And get plenty of vigorous exercise.

Avulsion Injury

Types of avulsions

Ear

Eyelid

Nail

Nerve (brachial plexus)

Skin

Tooth

Surgical

Ear avulsions

The ear is particularly vulnerable to avulsion injuries due to its exposed position on the side of the head. The most common cause of these injuries is human bites, followed by falls, motor vehicle accidents, and dog bites. A partially avulsed ear can be reattached through suturing or microvascular surgery, depending on the severity of the injury. Microvascular surgery can also be used to reattach a completely avulsed ear, but its success rate is lower because of the need for venous drainage. The ear can also be reconstructed with cartilage and skin grafts.

Eyelid avulsions

This is an uncommon injury that can be caused by motor vehicle accidents, dog bites, or human bites. Eyelid avulsions are repaired by suturing after a CT scan is performed to determine where damage to the muscles, nerves, and blood vessels of the eyelid has occurred. More severe injuries require reconstruction, however, this usually results in some loss of function and subsequent surgeries may be necessary to improve structure and function. Microvascular surgery is another method of repair but used rarely. Sometimes botulinum toxin is injected into the eyelid to paralyse the muscles while the eyelid heals.

Traumatic nail avulsions

Trauma to the nail can cause the nail plate to be torn from the nail bed. Unlike other types of avulsion, when a nail is lost, it is not reattached. Following the loss of the nail, the nail bed forms a germinal layer which hardens as the cells acquire keratin and becomes a new nail. Until this layer has formed, the exposed nail bed is highly sensitive and should be covered with a non-adherent dressing, as an ordinary dressing will stick to the nail bed and cause extreme pain upon removal. In the average person, fingernails require 3 to 6 months to regrow completely, while toenails require 12 to 18 months.

Brachial plexus avulsions

In this type of injury, the brachial plexus (a bundle of nerves that sends signals from the spine to the arms, shoulders, and hands) is torn from its attachment to the spine. One common cause of this injury is when a baby’s shoulders rotate in the birth canal during delivery and cause the brachial plexus to stretch and tear. It occurs in 1-2 out of every 1,000 births. Shoulder trauma during motor vehicle accidents is another common cause. Detachment of the nerves causes pain and loss of function in the arms, shoulders, and hands. Neuropathic pain can be treated with medication, but function can only be restored through surgical reattachment or nerve grafts. For intractable pain, a procedure called dorsal root entry zone (DREZ) lesioning is effective.

Skin avulsions

The most common avulsion injury, skin avulsions usually occur during motor vehicle accidents. The severity ranges from skin flaps (minor) to degloving (moderate) and amputation of a finger or limb (severe). Suprafascial avulsions are those in which the depth of the removed skin reaches the subcutaneous tissue layer. Subfascial avulsions are those deeper than the subcutaneous layer. Small suprafascial avulsions can be repaired by suturing, but most avulsions require skin grafts or reconstructive surgery.

Tooth avulsions

A tooth completely or partially (such that the dental pulp is exposed) detached from its socket is avulsed. Secondary (permanent) teeth can be replaced and stabilised by a dentist. Primary (baby) teeth are not replaced because they tend to become infected and to interfere with the growth of the secondary teeth. A completely avulsed tooth that is replaced within one hour of the injury can be permanently retained. The long-term retention rate decreases as the time that the tooth is detached increases, and eventually root resorption makes replacement of the tooth impossible. To minimise damage to the root, the tooth should be kept in milk or sterile saline while it is outside of the mouth.

Surgical avulsions

An avulsion is sometimes performed surgically to relieve symptoms of a disorder or prevent a chronic condition from recurring. Small incision avulsion (also called ambulatory phlebectomy) is used to remove varicose veins from the legs in disorders such as Chronic venous insufficiency. A nail avulsion is performed to remove all or part of a chronic ingrown nail. Facial nerve avulsion is used to treat the involuntary twitching in Benign Essential Blepharospasm. However, it often requires additional surgeries to retain function and botulinum toxin injections have proved to be a more effective treatment with fewer complications.

See also

Physical trauma

Plastic surgery

Skin grafting

References

^ a b Davison, S. P., & Bosley, B. N. (2008). Ear, Reconstruction and Salvage. Retrieved January 15, 2009, from .

^ Nahai, F., Hayhurst, J. W., & Salibian, A. H. (1978, July). Microvascular surgery in avulsive trauma to the external ear. Clinics in Plastic Surgery, 5(3), 423-426.

^ Fleming, J. P., & Cotlar, S. W. (1979, July). Successful reattachment of an almost totally avulsed ear: Use of the fluorescein test. Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, 64, 94-96.

^ Pennington, D. G., Lai, M. F., & Pelly, A.D. (1980, June). Successful replantation of a completely avulsed ear by microvascular anastomosis. Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, 65(6), 820-823.

^ Tanaka, Y., & Tajima, S. (1989, October). Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, 84(4), 665-668.

^ Talbi, M., Stussi, J. D., & Meley, M. Microsurgical replantation of a totally amputated ear without venous repair. (2001, August). Journal Of Reconstructive Microsurgery, 17(6), 417-420.

^ a b Saad Ibrahim, S. M., Zidan, A., & Madani, S. (2008). Totally avulsed ear: New technique of immediate ear reconstruction. Journal Of Plastic, Reconstructive & Aesthetic Surgery, 61, S29-36.

^ O’Toole, G., Bhatti, K., & Masood, S. (2008). Replantation of an avulsed ear, using a single arterial anastamosis. Journal Of Plastic, Reconstructive & Aesthetic Surgery, 61(3), 326-329.

^ Goldberg, S.H., Bullock, J.D., & Connelly, P.J. (1992). Eyelid avulsion: A clinical and experimental study. Ophthalmic Plastic And Reconstructive Surgery, 8(4), 256-261.

^ a b c Huerva, V., Mateo, A.J., & Espinet, R. (2008, January). Isolated medial rectus muscle rupture after a traffic accident. Strabismus, 16(1), 33-37.

^ a b Avram, D.R., Hurwitz, J.J., & Kratky, V. (1991, October). Dog and human bites of the eyelid repaired with retrieved autogenous tissue. Canadian Journal Of Ophthalmology, 26(6), 334-337.

^ a b Soueid, N.E., & Khoobehi, K. (2006, January). Microsurgical replantation of total upper eyelid avulsion. Annals of Plastic Surgery, 56(1), 99-102.

^ deSousa, J.L., Leibovitch, I., Malhotra, R., O’Donnell, B., Sullivan, T., & Selva, D. (2007, December). Techniques and outcomes of total upper and lower eyelid reconstruction. Archives of Ophthalmology, 125(12), 1601-1609.

^ Nail Avulsions

^ Rischer, C.E., & Easton, T.A. (1995). Focus on human biology (2nd ed.). New York: Harper Collins College Publishers.

^ National Center for Emergency Medicine Informatics. Nail Off. Retrieved January 16, 2009, from .

^ National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. NINDS Erb-Duchenne and Dejerine-Klumpke Palsies Information Page. Retrieved January 15, 2009, from .

^ American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Erb’s Palsy (Brachial Plexus Birth Injury). Retrieved January 15, 2009, from .

^ a b c Binder, D. K., Lu, D. C., & Barbaro, N. M. (2005, October). Multiple root avulsions from the brachial plexus. Neurosurgical Focus, 19(3).

^ a b Jeng, S.F., & Wei, F.C. (1997, May). Classification and reconstructive options in foot plantar skin avulsion injuries. Plastic And Reconstructive Surgery, 99(6), 1695-1703.

^ a b c d e Merck Manual Online. Fractured and Avulsed Teeth. Retrieved January 15, 2009, from .

^ Kidd, P. S., Sturt, P. A., & Fultz, J. (2000). Mosby’s emergency nursing reference (2nd ed.). St. Louis: Mosby, Inc.

^ Society for Vascular Surgery. VascularWeb: Chronic Venous Insufficiency. Retrieved January 15, 2009, from .

^ American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Ingrown Toenail. Retrieved January 15, 2009, from .

^ a b McCord, C.D. Jr., Coles, W.H., Shore, J.W., Spector, R., & Putnam, J.R. (1984, February). Treatment of essential blepharospasm: Comparison of facial nerve avulsion and eyebrow-eyelid muscle stripping procedure. Archives Of Ophthalmology, 102(2), 266-268.

^ a b Grandas, F., Elston, J., Quinn, N., & Marsden, C.D. (1988, June). Blepharospasm: A review of 264 patients. Journal Of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry, 51(6), 767-772.

v  d  e

Injuries, other than fractures, dislocations, sprains and strains (S00-T14, 850-929)

Head (head injury) and neck

Traumatic brain injury (Concussion, Diffuse axonal injury, Cerebral contusion, Epidural hematoma, Subdural hematoma, Subarachnoid hemorrhage)

Facial trauma (Black eye   Eye injury)

Thorax (chest trauma)

lung: pleural disease (Pneumothorax, Hemothorax, Hemopneumothorax)   Pulmonary contusion   Pulmonary laceration

heart and circulatory: Cardiac tamponade   Commotio cordis   Hemopericardium   Traumatic aortic rupture

Abdomen, lower back,

lumbar spine and pelvis

Ruptured spleen   Traumatic diaphragmatic hernia

Shoulder and upper arm

Rotator cuff tear

Knee and leg

Achilles tendon rupture

General

Spinal cord injury   Brachial plexus lesion

Abrasion   Amputation   Avulsion   Bite   Blister   Bruise   Burn   Hematoma

Wound

Categories: Injuries | Medical emergencies

The Prevention and Risk of Tuberculin Infection

The prevention of Tuberculosis as well as knowing how to recognize the symptoms is important also in countries with low rate of new Tuberculosis cases. In Canada 1600 new cases per year are discovered.

Tuberculosis exists since centuries ago and was called” consumption” as it had no actual cure and people died because of the infection. Tuberculosis can be treated successfully nowadays but many cases of deaths are still present because patients abandon treatment. TBC is a very serious disease that normally affects the lungs’ it can also affect other tissues like the kidneys, bones, lymphatic nodes or brain.

The respiratory Tuberculosis is transmitted and contacted when a patient coughs, sneezes or even talks releasing bacterial fragments into the air. Only spending more hours around the patient with active TBC exposes you to the risk of contacting the disease. One cannot contact Tuberculosis by sitting on toilets, sharing dishes with an ill person or shaking hands.

People with a healthy immune system do not develop the primer infection as the immune cells kill the bacteria. If they are not killed bacteria remain inactive inside the body and name the primo infection with Tuberculin bacteria. The focus can activate when the immune system is weakened.

The risk of getting the Tuberculin disease is higher in the first two years if the bacteria continue to multiply. Only about 10% of the infected persons get Tuberculosis but in case of HIV infection the risk highly increases.

The following categories of people are more exposed to Tuberculosis:

1. Persons living in Tuberculin exposed communities

2. Persons that travel in countries with more cases of Tuberculosis

3. Homeless people or those living in misery or a larger number of persons in one room.

4. Workers in the health department are also highly susceptible.

Weakened immune systems increase the risk of contact. Small children, babies, drug/alcohol addicts, skinny persons, HIV+, people with diabetes, cancer, kidney problems and those with transplanted organs.

Symptoms of Tuberculosis are massive coughs more than 3 months, sputum with blood release, chest pains, anorexia, and tiredness, loss of weight, fever and sweating during the night.

If you are suspected of Tuberculosis, a small quantity of PPD is injected under your skin for testing. In 72hours an inflamed induration appears on the skin surface if you’re positive. In case of positive infection further investigations like chest X-ray are necessary to exclude Tuberculosis disease. Also an antibiotic treatment can prevent the development of the disease especially if you have other determinant factors or are exposed to contact with ill persons.

All cases of Tuberculosis require an at least 6 months treatment with antibiotics as the risk of cronicisation or giving the disease to others is higher. The health care providers must perform regular testing for Tuberculosis and treat positive cases as soon a possible.

Most Effective Penis Enlargement FDA Approved

Enlarging the male penis is actually not as silly as it sounds. In fact, recent polls in the popular women’s magazine Cosmopolitan suggest that over 68% of females questioned want their sex partner to have a larger libido. Things are different now, and as a result, a problem that could not be solved in the past now can be. So what is the most effective penis enlargement solution that is FDA approved?

Any product being FDA approved is important because it ensures one thing, and that is safety. You will find plenty of knock off brands of penis enlargement pills that claim to add length to your libido, but all of this should be taken with a grain of salt if it is not FDA approved. Think of the FDA like a referee, making sure the rules are met in making not only a safe, but effective enhancement solution.

This brings us to the most effective penis pill, as judged by men’s health forums and testimonials. Extagen is the brand that has sold the most enhancement pills worldwide. You read that correctly. Penis enlargement is a global phenomenon, and Extagen has the most positive word of mouth according to Men’s Health magazine, a respected medical journal. But what makes Extagen better than all the alternatives? For starters, it is FDA approved, which as referenced above, means safety as well as a higher probability of being effective. But that is not all.

Extagen, according to users, adds more length than every single penis enlargement solution on the world wide web. Testimonials report that gains can be made between 3 and 5 inches. This is huge for the confidence of a man taking them, but even better increasing the pleasure in intercourse with their sex partner.

The product also receives high praise because of its money back guarantee. It is 4 months long, 120 days, which is well past any competing enhancement pill. Money back guarantee is great for users because even if they enjoy the success and obvious benefits of gaining a larger penis, they can still return the product if they cannot afford it. So, in essence, you can increase your sexual pleasure and prowess for free. Many testimonials cite this, as well as their exemplary customer service as huge reasons for taking the plunge and ordering.

Even though people want the most effective penis enlargement solution to be FDA approved, they have other wants as well, namely discreet shipping. Extagen offers this as well, putting your order in the mail immediately and making the parcel look like any other piece of mail.

Toenail Fungus Laser Treatment: The Safest Way

When you are infected with nail fungus, there are certain things that you have to consider before you get a treatment. This is because some treatments may not be applicable to your health condition, and some do not fit your budget. With the latest technology, podiatrist introduced toenail fungus laser treatment. They say that this is the most convenient way of eliminating fungal activities.

How does it work?

  • This treatment uses a beam of light that will be focused on the affected area. It kills the fungus as the concentration of light is heightened.
  • There is no need to remove the nail plate from the nail bed in this procedure. The nail plate stays on its place and just lets the laser vaporize the fungus.

This kind of treatment is said to be the fastest and safest way of dealing with toenail fungus. It just takes less than an hour and you can go home fungus-free. Most people also use this treatment to get rid of side effects from orally-taken treatments.

Orally-taken treatments used to be the fastest and most effective way of getting rid of onychomycosis. However, the dosage of this treatment is really high. Users should have a monthly blood analysis to see if their body is still responding well with the treatment. If not, this means that some organs are affected negatively, especially the liver.

Below are the negative sides of laser treatment:

  • You will need around 2-3 sessions to make sure that there will be no recurrence of toenail fungus symptoms. Though there is no guarantee that it won’t happen again.
  • It has been reported that if you just have 1 session, there is a high percentage of nail fungus reoccurrence in less than 5 years.
  • Each session ranges from $800 to $1000 depending on the severity of the infection.
  • This method is new. Thus, it still lacks tests that are needed to verify if there are really no side effects.

There was a controversy in the process of getting approval from Food and Drugs Administration. One manufacturer of the laser machine released to the press that they already had the approval though it was not given them yet. This made the FDA stricter regarding their proposal.

It was just recently that FDA finally approved laser treatment to be safe. Among other toenail fungus treatments, this method is the most expensive one, but safest to use. This is also recommended for those who are having diabetes.

Eye Cancer Treatment – Is There A Cure For Eye Cancer?

Eye cancer treatment is an important gateway to proper and complete elimination of tumors or cancer cells that develop in eye region. Treatment is helpful to avoid further growth of cancer cells in eye region and also prevents other forms of cancerous or non-cancerous disorders related to eye or other adjacent organs. Thorough eye cancer diagnosis is very important to undergo apt form of treatment pattern and get maximum benefit from the same.

Importance and Types of Eye Cancer Treatment

Eye is an important organ of human body. Cancerous development in eyes can lead to partial or complete loss of vision in long-run and can also cause other forms of cancers in nearby areas. Eye cancer can be of primary or secondary form and has a high tendency to spread at a rapid pace. Also, the chances of elimination of tumors decrease with increase in cancer stages and intensity of therapy also increases with increase in severity of tumor-growth. It is easy to tackle tumors restricted to local areas but, complete elimination of tumors becomes difficult in higher stages and the chances of cancer recurrence increase considerably.

Cancer treatment is important to ensure proper cell development in eye region and get rid of abnormal cells in time. Abnormal cells that lead to cancerous growth divide and grow at a very high rate and also compel adjacent healthy cells to behave unnaturally and function inefficiently. Abnormal cell growth also affects functioning of tissues and causes shortage of generation and supply of necessary resources to normal cells in the area. Thus, presence of cancer cells affects overall health of eyes.

Primary cancer of eyes is easy to treat as compared to secondary one. Also, eye cancer causes and symptoms can be traced and monitored easily in primary type of the disorder. Major regions affected due to primary form of tumor-growth are iris, cornea, eye lens, retina, orbit, ciliary body, and optic nerves. Tumors formed in primary cancer of eye metastasize only in late stages. Secondary cancer of eye is more common as compared to primary one and the tumors form mostly in lungs or breasts before reaching eye region. Thus people suffering from breast or lung cancer have high chances of suffering from cancerous infection in eyes if tumors are not treated well.

Cancer cure is also important because cancerous growth in eyes can instigate cell abnormality in other regions like head and neck areas, blood cells, lymph nodes etc. Cancer treatments are of various types and one must consult a physician before opting for one.

Prime Eye Cancer Cure

Surgery is the most widely adopted treatment for cancer. It can be of various forms as enucleation of eye (removal of eye without removing eyelids and eye muscles), evisceration (removing all eye contents except sclera), iridectomy (removing infected portion of iris), choroidectomy (removing choroid later), iridocyclectomy (removing ciliary muscle and iris), and eye wall resection.

Laser treatment is also useful to treat cancer of eye. One can also be recommended chemotherapy (treating tumors by chemicals or by intake of medically recommended chemical drugs), radiotherapy (exposing tumors to strong radiations), cryosurgery (passing liquid nitrogen to kill cancerous tumors by freezing them) and transpupillary thermotherapy (killing tumors by heating them with use of laser beams).

Treatment can give maximum output if done in early stages. Efficiency and reliability of eye cancer cure decreases if taken in late stages and one may have to undergo same or different forms of treatment repeatedly to keep cancerous growth under control or avoid eye cancer recurrence in later period.

Treatment Options in Pneumonia

Most of the cases of pneumonia are triggered by bacterial factors and are usually treated with 5-10 days of ant biotherapy, even longer in case of an impaired immune system. The doctor will choose the most appropriate antibiotic for your condition after taking notice of your age, symptoms, their severity and the eventual need for hospitalization. Most physicians recommend a broad-spectrum antibiotic with bactericide effects on a large number of bacteria; still, most of the antibiotics available have a good curing effect on pneumonia.

In less severe cases with no need for hospitalization, the doctor will prescribe you one of the next possible treatments:

1. Macrolides such as Biaxin, Biaxin XL, Ery-tab or Zithromax.

2. Tetracyclines like Doxycycline

3. Fluoroquinolones such as Levaquin or Avelox.

In case of hospital care, the mentioned antibiotics may also be administered but in addition, other several ones are available for more severe cases of pneumonia:

1. Cephalosporines like Ceclor, Duricef or Ceftin.

2. Penicillin like Augumentin, Amoxil, Omnipen, Biomox or Timentin

3. Vancomycin

Mild to moderate pneumonia cases can also be cured with a new-generation antibiotic class called Ketolides.

In healthy young subjects, the effects of the proper ant biotherapy must usually be seen in about 2-3 days. If by this time the symptoms show no real amelioration, you might need bacterial culture and testing for sensitivity to antibiotics. This will allow the physician to determine which organism is responsible for your pneumonia type and whether you have developed resistance to that particular antibiotic.

Hospitalization is only requited in over 65 years old patients, associated conditions like diabetes, heart or kidney failure, severe illness with hypoxia, severe chest pain, no real improvements after therapy or the impossibility to eat or keep food when in this case intravenous feeding is required.

Pneumonia can also be caused by viruses similar to the Influenza causing the flu or the varicella-zoster virus causing chicken-pox. For viral types of pneumonia there is currently no actual treatment except home stay, care and treatment for the symptoms. Pneumonia cases caused by Varicella virus can be cured by using the medication called Acyclovir.

If your case is not severe enough to require hospitalization, you will not need to identify the responsible bacteria. If you have been hospitalized, additional testing will be done to find the exact cause of pneumonia. If you immediately start the ant biotherapy you will see a faster improvement and you will rapidly feel better.

The Groin Strain (Hip Flexor/adductor Strain): How Can I Prevent It?

What is a Groin Strain?

Groin strains are commonly seen in athletes competing in sports that require quick acceleration and change of direction in forward and lateral movements.

A groin strain is a muscle injury in the front hip region that involves the primary hip flexor muscles (iliopsoas, rectus femoris, tensor fascia latae, and sartorius) and/or the hip adductor muscle group (group of five muscles that contract to bring the leg in and across the body including the pectineus, gracilis, and adductor magnus, longus, and brevis).

A strain to a muscle is caused when the muscles are overstretched or overloaded. In this case, it can happen in a number of ways including a strong kick of a ball without warming up, a quick stretch during a lateral movement, or a fall while skiing in which the bindings do not release and the leg is twisted at the hip.

Who gets Groin Strains?

Athletes susceptible to groin strains are those in sports that require a quick change of direction as well as explosive movements. Back row volleyball players are at risk for groin injuries because of their requirement for quick dynamic side-to-side movements. While volleyball athletes may be injured going to the ball, some athletes are injured moving the ball.

Because the lower extremity kicking motion uses both adductor and hip flexor muscles, athletes competing in the sport of soccer are susceptible to groin strains especially when their hip muscles are not stretched and properly warmed up.

Dancers are also known for problems in their hips including “snapping hip” syndrome. Although there are several causes of snapping hip syndrome, one is caused by a deep hip flexor muscle/tendon (iliopsoas) popping over a bony prominence of the pelvis.

Hip flexor tightness can also be seen in dancers because of the amount of hip flexion and rotation required in their sport. The athletes will complain of pain and tightness deep in the front of the hip with palpation revealing a definitive tight band within the muscle.

What causes Groin Strains?

Groin strains are caused by either overloading or overstretching the muscle. A common mechanism of injury for soccer athletes is a half-field kick to the goal prior to warming up. The force needed to put the ball into the goal is greater than the muscle can withstand especially if the muscle is not stretched and warmed up.

Tight adductor muscles are another cause of groin strain. Most athletes concentrate on stretching their quadriceps and hamstring muscle groups, but do not give the same attention to their adductor muscle group. These muscles tend to be tighter than other hip muscles hence placing an athlete at risk for injury.

What can I do to prevent a groin strain?

Prevention of groin strains should focus on flexibility and strengthening programs for both the hip adductors and hip flexors and a proper warm-up to adequately prepare the muscles for explosive movements.

Flexibility of the hip adductor/flexor muscle group can be improved through consistent daily stretching exercises specifically geared for these muscle groups. It is well known that muscles that are consistently and properly stretched will increase their tissue flexibility. However, it is also well known that muscles that are not stretched will get tighter and tighter over time.

What is the treatment for a groin strain?

Initial Treatment (1-3 days)

The initial treatment for a groin injury will depend on the severity of the injury. But in general, the athlete should be pulled from the activity and have an ice pack immediately applied to the area for twenty minutes. After the twenty minutes, the groin should be securely wrapped with an ace bandage for support.

If a second or third degree strain is suspected, the athlete should be fitted for crutches, provided crutch-walking instructions, and referred for further medical evaluation.

The athlete should continue with a cycle of twenty minutes of ice followed by a compression wrap for the first 48 – 72 hours. The individual should also limit their activity and rest the leg as much as possible in a position of elevation (leg above the heart level). Using the PRICE principle – Protection, Rest, Icing, Compression, Elevation will help reduce the amount of swelling in the thigh. The PRICE principle applies to treating many types of sports injuries.

To read more on groin strain prevention with explanations of multiple stretching exercises as well as groin strain treatment information including recovery exercises (3-7 days) and (weeks 2-3) with explanations on strengthening exercises, please click the following link
groin strain: prevention and treatment.

Visit SportsMD to learn more about sports injuries. SportsMD is the most trusted resource for sports health and fitness information for people engaged in sports everywhere. We have assembled the sports industry’s leading Doctors and health experts – each sharing valuable, practical advice to keep you playing injury-free.

Heart Burn Symptoms

Spicy foods, large meals, sodas, coffee, citrus fruits, tomatoes and fried foods can all lead to heart burn symptoms. You can try a burn heart home remedy, but if you have not had these symptoms evaluated by a doctor, they could be related to a more serious condition. Common heart burn symptoms include a burning sensation in the throat or the chest. Non-burning chest pain, heaviness, pressure or nausea associated with chest pain should be checked out immediately by a physician.

If your heart burn symptoms are the more common type, you are not alone. Many people, particularly in the Western world suffer from heart burn symptoms everyday. Lifestyle, the foods we eat and obesity can all lead to heart burn symptoms. If you are looking for a burn heart home remedy other than the many over the counter antacids that are available, there are several botanicals that may be effective.

Gingerroot is a commonly available burn heart home remedy, as are peppermint and rhubarb. Some botanicals that may not be as easy to find, but that may relieve heart burn symptoms are bayberry, birch, dandelion, fennel, liverwort, pasture brake, pleurisy root, red clover and sweet rush root. These botanicals were all used by Native Americans to treat indigestion and heart burn symptoms. Consult an expert in herbs and natural remedies for usage instructions.

Sometimes the best burn heart home remedy is prevention. Once you experience heart burn symptoms, you can try a botanical or over the counter med, but evaluating the foods that you eat and your lifestyle may prevent the heart burn symptoms from recurring. I love tomatoes, but noticed that whenever I ate them, I experienced heart burn symptoms. All foods do not affect all people the same way, so it is necessary to evaluate your own diet personally. Heart burn symptoms that occur after a large meal may not be related to a specific food, but just to the fact that the stomach is overly full and acid has backed up into the lower throat or esophagus. It is the stomach acid that causes the burning sensation.

Lying down after a large meal can lead to heart burn symptoms. Proper digestion does not occur in this position, so another good burn heart home remedy is a leisurely walk after dinner. Other forms of exercise after a large meal may only increase the heart burn symptoms. Even repeatedly bending over to pick up the kids toys or loading the dishes in the dishwasher may cause the acid to rise up out of the stomach and lead to heart burn.

Smoking can cause heart burn symptoms. Smoking dries out the saliva in the mouth and throat that would normally neutralize stomach acid. If the other risks associated with smoking have not made you quit, maybe your heart burn symptoms will. Neutralizing the stomach acid is the goal of any burn heart home remedy as well as the over the counter and prescription meds. Sometimes a calcium supplement will work. Calcium carbonate is the active ingredient in many common antacids.

Another way to avoid heart burn symptoms is to drink water with your meals instead of soda, in fact drinking soda before bed can lead to night time heart burn symptoms. Night time heart burn can be particularly distressing and may lead to coughing fits and disturbed sleep. Drinking water is not a burn heart home remedy, but may prevent the heart burn symptoms form occurring in the first place.

Chronic heart burn symptoms should be reported to and evaluated by your doctor. Acid reflux disease is often first diagnosed after a person reports frequent heart burn symptoms. While occasional symptoms may be effectively treated with a burn heart home remedy, chronic heart burn symptoms may require additional treatment.

For more information about heart burn symptoms or other digestive disorders, visit the Digestive Disorder Guide.

Home Remedies For Chest Congestion

There is an alarming number of people that tend to suffer from chest congestion and it is becoming a problem for many families. Unfortunately the lack of funds means that some of them do not seek proper medical attention. That means that one has to look at the solution of remedies for chest congestion. These remedies are based on an understanding of how the body works and how it might be helped to recover from the ravages of the chest infections. In using the remedies for chest congestion the patient will be giving the body the opportunity to rebuild its defenses and overcome the problems of the congestion. One has to consider that this might turn out to be a progressive issue that gets worse with time and therefore the user has to get to grips with the operation of the remedies for chest congestion so that they are not left in an inconveniencing position at the end of the day.

There have traditionally been some remedies that help to clear out conditions of the chest particularly if they involved congestion. Lemon is particular is said to give people some relief from the congested chest. The consumption of vitamins especially vitamin C has been said to be a very effective element of the home remedies for chest congestion. This vitamin can be obtained from certain fruits and vegetables so that the patient is able to recover from their problems. Alternatively they might use some chicken soup which is said to increase the possibility that the person will be able to get some relief from the congestion. The use of the combination of salt and hot water is also praised as a possible solution to the chest congestion.

In using these remedies the public is placing faith in the people that have recommended them. In most cases the remedies for chest congestion offers some sort of relief and if they are used in combination the effect might be good. However the person should never forget to use their medication that has been prescribed because this will be the key to developing the defenses that are so crucial to fighting off disease. If they choose to ignore the advice of the doctor they will pay the price by getting problems with their health. The remedies for chest congestion are just additional sources of help.

Cellulitis Antibiotics Not Working – Cellulitis Lymphedema Patients

Cellulitis Antibiotics Not Working

People suffering from lymphedema may experience cellulitis at some point in their lives and many would say that it is the worst nightmare that any lymphedema patient can face. Numerous causes could prompt an attack of cellulitis, ranging from a small cut or bruise to an insect bite or sunburn. The treatment may involve a strong dosage of antibiotics and even a stay in the hospital for 8-10 days. Almost all patients make a full recovery with the proper treatment, but if the problem is ignored, it could have serious consequences.

Cellulitis is a skin infection that is caused by a pathogen and lymphedema patients are prone to the infection because their immune system has slowed down. The initial signs that the person notices are redness, increased body temperature, chills, pain and swelling. Generally, the patient describes ‘flu-like’ symptoms. Red patches and streaks on the skin are known as erythema and the warm skin sensations are described as hyperthermia. The person may have a high fever with chills. Loss of appetite, irritability, fatigue, swollen lymph nodes, nausea and vomiting are some of the other indications of cellulitis lymphedema patients. Cellulitis Antibiotics Not Working

The symptoms of cellulitis must not be ignored, especially by people suffering from lymphedema. The doctor must be consulted and treatment started immediately. A 10-day course of antibiotics usually helps to clear up the infection. Till the cellulitis clears up, the patient is required to avoid the lymphoedema therapy like manual lymph drainage or massage. The compression garment should not be worn, but the affected limb should be kept elevated for fluid movement in the right direction.

Lymphedema patients must essentially avoid contracting cellulitis so as not to overload an already weakened system. Contracting cellulitis for lymphedema patients is like an invitation to disaster. If the infection is not treated in time, it could lead to severe complications like spreading of the infection to other parts of the body, resulting in gangrene, sepsis, limb amputation or even death. Cellulitis could start from any part of the body, not necessarily in the lymphedema affected limb. The best preventive measures involve taking care not to injure yourself. Using gloves while working, protecting the skin at all times, avoiding injuries and abrasions to the skin are some common forms of protection. Even if there is an injury, the wound must be cleaned well and antibiotic cream applied.

Till today, there is no known cure for lymphedema, it can only be controlled. An attack of cellulitis may cause irreversible damage the patient’s lymphatic system. Hence, it is desirable to take all possible care to avoid such a situation.  The skin must be protected at all times and injuries avoided. However, if the patient does catch cellulitis, quick treatment might help to prevent serious complications. Cellulitis Antibiotics Not Working

Bronchitis – Symptoms To Watch For

Most people tend to experience soring chest once they are relieved from a cold. This ultimately develops in a cough, chills or even a slight fever.

In case, these symptoms persist, you may be suffering from acute bronchitis. This is a condition that occurs as soon as the inner walls lining the primary air passageways of the lungs get infected or inflamed.

Certain respirators infection such as a cold is responsible for the occurrence of bronchitis. Other factors responsible for this disease include environmental factors such as smoking, exposure to air pollution, smoke, etc.

Bronchitis can be defined as a type of respiratory disease. The mucous membranes existing in the bronchial passages of the lungs get infected by this disease. Once the irritate membrane swells and gets thicker, it tends to make the small airways of the lungs smaller in size or shut of completely. This ultimately results in coughing spells that's usually accompanied by thick phlegm and difficulty in breathing. The disease can be categorized into two different parts:

a) Acute bronchitis

b) Chronic bronchitis

Acute bronchitis lasts for about less than six weeks whereas chronic bronchitis requires serious medical attention. In order to treat this serious respiratory disease, it is important to get medical aid on time. Make sure that you know all the symptoms regarding respiratory disease. Here are some signs and symptoms of this disease to help you know whether you are suffering from it.

a) Cough resulting in yellowish-gray or green mucus or sputum.

b) Wheezing

c) Throat pain

d) Difficulty in breathing

e) Discomfort in chest

f) Fatigue

g) Headache

h) High fever

i) Sweating

j) Nausea

k) Spitting blood

l) Yellowish mucous

m) Severe cough

n) Chest pain

o) Mild of moderate fever

p) Pain in the region of the upper abdomen

q) Soarness

r) Recidivating chest pain

If left untreated, bronchitis may lead to several problems. Experts feel that usually the symptoms of bronchitis may fade away within a period of a few days. However, if you experience the aggravation for a longer time; it is important to seek immediate medical attention.

There are also certain things you can do to get relief prior to receiving medical attention.

a) Have plenty of liquid

b) Take ample rest

c) Stay away from potential irritants such as chemicals, smoke, astringent substances and substances.

d) Use air humidifiers to help maintaining the air moist.

e) Keep the temperature of your room warm.

There are certain tests you need to undergo in order to diagnose the disease. Here are some common tests you need to go for:

a) Chest X-ray

b) Pulmonary function tests

c) Lab tests of sputum

d) Pulse oximetry

e) Arterial blood gas

The best way to treat this disease is to diagnose in on time. Make sure that you keep tabs on the signs and symptoms of this disease in order to defect it on time and seek expert medical assistance.

Can Chiropractors Help With Shoulder Pain?

Chiropractors are known for their abilities in helping people with neck and back pain. The most common reason why someone even considers seeing a chiropractor is for back pain, specifically low back pain. Research and studies and the general consensus is that we can help in this area. What about shoulder pain? Is there anything a chiropractor can do to help shoulder pain?

You can certainly have a chiropractor take a look at and evaluate your shoulder problem. While the spine is most commonly adjusted, the chiropractic adjustment can be performed at any joint. A joint is anywhere two bones meet. In the case of the shoulder, we'll be looking at three different areas; the clavicle (collarbone), the humerus (upper arm), and the scapula (the shoulder blade).

Any of these joints can move out of their normal position with extended use in the wrong way. Stress and poor posture in the upper back can lead the shoulder blade to become stuck and fixated in the wrong position. The chiropractor can adjust this area and work with the muscles to get things moving again.

The same principles apply to the humerus and the clavicle. There are certain movements in which each bone will take on a more primary role. The chiropractor can feel with his hand if the right areas are moving or not. If the joint is not moving, this means it is likely not functioning correctly. This is where the chiropractor's expertise can be of most use.

The first evaluation of the shoulder is really to see if any of the muscles, ligaments, or tendons have torn. Depending on the severity of the tear, you may need an immediate referral for an MRI and a visit to an orthopedic specialist. You do not want someone moving your bones around if you have a tear, and the chiropractor does not want to do that either.

If you have not had any trauma to the shoulder joint and the pain has just come on gradually over the years. The chiropractor can take a look and provide adjustments and work to the muscles that can make a world of difference.