Uterine Fibroid Tumors

Uterine fibroid tumors or leiomyomas are among the most common tumors among women. In fact, it is apparent in 25-50% of women, says American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Uterine fibroid tumors are typically non-cancerous; however, there is still the need to be aware of these tumors and some dangers it may bring to your health.

To give you better understanding of these tumors, here are answers to frequently asked questions on uterine fibroid tumors:

What are uterine fibroid tumors?

Uterine fibroid tumors, medically known as uterine leiomyomata or simply myoma, are growths consisting of smooth muscle cells and fibrous connective tissues usually found within the wall of the uterus. Some grow below the lining of the uterus; some grow between the muscles of the uterus, while some grow towards the exterior part of the uterus. Uterine fibroid tumors may grow in clusters or as a single nodule and may vary in size.

What are the causes of uterine fibroid tumors?

Scientific researches have not yet finally identified the causes of uterine fibroid tumors. It has been theorized though that uterine fibroid tumors result from hormonal, genetic and environmental factors, which may be present in combinations in every case.

Are uterine fibroid tumors cancerous?

Though considered as tumors, uterine fibroid tumors are mostly benign, which means that in most instances, they are not as dangerous as cancerous tumors. Cases of uterine fibroid tumors turning into cancer is very rare, however, it is possible. Although having uterine fibroid tumors is generally not dangerous (it also has nothing to do with cancer of the uterus), it is uneasy to live with; hence, women opt to have their uterine fibroid tumors removed.

Who gets uterine fibroid tumors?

In most instances, uterine fibroid tumors develop in women of childbearing age, usually those in the 30s and 40s. However, researches show that women who have previously given birth are less likely to develop uterine fibroid tumors. In addition, it has been found out that overweight women and young African women are more prone to developing uterine fibroid tumors. The reasons for these are not yet known, however, these facts have been prevalently observed.

What are the symptoms indicating presence of uterine fibroid tumors?

In many instances, uterine fibroid tumors do not cause symptoms, but some women having these benign tumors say they experience pain and heavy bleeding during menstrual periods while some experience bleeding in between their menstrual period. She also urinates more often (due to the pressure of the fibroids to the bladder) and feels full in the lower part of the abdomen.

Some women also experience pain in the lower back and pain during intercourse. Other signs of uterine fibroid tumors include miscarriage, complications during pregnancy and infertility.

How are uterine fibroid tumors detected?

Uterine fibroid tumors are detected through pelvic examination. This lets your doctor check your vagina, ovaries and uterus. Imaging tests such as ultrasound, MRI (magnetic resonance imaging), x-rays, and CT scan can also help the doctor detect presence of uterine fibroid tumors in your uterus.

Is treatment necessary?

Treatment of the uterine fibroid tumors is not necessary however since symptoms can be severe on some women, they prefer to have their fibroids treated. The main treatment for uterine fibroid tumors is uterine fibroid embolization (UFE). This is a modestly invasive procedure wherein a small tube is inserted into an artery towards the uterine artery. This allows the interventional radiologist to bring in small plastic beads into the artery supplying blood to the uterine fibroid tumors. In this way, blood flow to the uterine fibroid tumor is blocked causing it to shrink; hence, symptoms are relieved.

Dangers of Broken Ribs

It’s probably no exaggeration to state that broken ribs rank high on the list of most painful injuries you can suffer, including gunshot wounds or childbirth.

This article is intended to provide information on the causes of broken ribs, the dangers they pose, and on treating the rib pain they trigger.

When most other bones are broken, you can put a cast on them. This is not possible with rib fractures because it could restrict breathing and possibly lead to pneumonia.

Sleeping becomes a real challenge. So does sitting down, standing up, or twisting your upper body. Taking a deep breath can be painful. Normal exhaling and inhaling can also cause discomfort. Just touching the area near a broken rib can also hurt a lot.

There are many ways you can get broken ribs, but the most common happen from participation in athletic activity or motor vehicle accidents.

Broken Ribs Are Not Just Painful – They’re Dangerous

Ribs that are fractured can cause serious complications in several ways. Two are common.

First, when a rib is not just cracked, and the fracture splits the bone apart, it can when a rib is broken apart and the edges are separated, it’s a dangerous situation. The edges of the bone can be sharp and jagged, which poses a threat to nearby organs – especially the lungs.

Second, as mentioned in the beginning of this article, rib pain can compromise your respiration so seriously that you can get pneumonia.

How to Treat Broken Ribs

Even though broken or cracked ribs cause severe pain, they generally heal on their own. Doctors can only treat the rib pain that results from your fractures, while guarding against pneumonia or damage to nearby organs from jagged edges.

A cracked rib can sometimes heal in a few weeks, and it may take several months for the pain to completely go away. A break in which the ends of the bone are completely separated will take longer.

Recovery may seem to take a long time because of the nature of the pain. It will hurt whenever you move your upper body. Since the pain is with you constantly, time can move very slowly.

Most doctors will not hesitate to prescribe pain killers when you have fractured ribs. Talk to your doctor about what’s best for you. There are also many good pain medications available over-the-counter that can also help reduce the discomfort as your recovery progresses.

Chest Pain – When Is It Not Serious?

You have heard that chest pain can be serious. It can signal a heart attack. It might be a rare, life-threatening problem. But it could be quite the opposite. It could be not at all serious.

When is chest pain not serious?

It is wise to learn when chest pain is not serious. You will want to check your symptoms with a licensed professional, but here are 7 examples of chest pain that is probably not immediately serious.

1. Acid reflux or heartburn: Chest pain can seem to be heart pain when it is related to the digestive tract. When acid refluxes (flows back) into the esophagus, it can cause a burning sensation in the chest. This chest pain can be mistaken for heart pain – the reason it was named as it was, even though it has nothing to do with the heart. This chest pain is not serious if it is occasional. If it happens frequently, you may be developing GERD, a more serious condition. To determine if this chest pain is serious, consider whether it came soon after eating. Try using an antacid. If the discomfort is relieved, it is probably heartburn.

2. Bruising: Chest pain can occur due to bruising of the outer chest. Perhaps you were moving furniture or other large objects. At the time, you didn’t realize you had hurt yourself. Later, you experience chest pain, but it is not serious.

3. Nerves: When is chest pain not serious? The roots of every nerve in the body are in the spinal cord. Smaller nerves branch from them along the neck and upper back. Chest pain can occur if one of these nerves is pinched where it leaves the spine. Chest pains caused by pinched nerves are sharp “shooting” pains. They may be triggered by moving your neck or arms in certain ways. They may be felt in the left or right part of the chest. These are not immediately serious chest pains.

4. Rib Injury: Chest pain can be caused by a bruised or fractured rib. This chest pain will be localized, right or left side, near a rib. It will be a sharp pain, and may increase when the rib area is touched. This chest pain is likely to increase when coughing.

5. Strains/sprains: When it is a result of a strain or sprain to one of the many muscles, bones, tendons, and cartilages in the chest, chest pain is probably not serious. These chest pains last for only a few seconds. They may return frequently over a period of days, and may be brought on, or relieved, by moving into certain positions. They are non-cardiac symptoms.

6. Stress: When is chest pain not serious? When it is caused by stress, your chest pain is not serious. As you respond to unusual demands on your body, emotions, or mind, you may tighten the muscles of the chest. This causes chest pain. With the pain, you may experience intense fear. Your heartbeat may increase, your breathing become rapid. You may perspire profusely and feel shortness of breath. This could be an anxiety or panic attack.

7. Ulcers: Another form of chest pain that is triggered by a digestive tract problem is the pain of an ulcer in the stomach or duodenum. This chest pain, like the pain of acid reflux or heartburn, is often felt in the upper abdomen or lower chest. As above, ask whether it was triggered by eating. Try getting relief with antacids. Although ulcer chest pains are not immediately serious, you should seek medical advice.

The Other Side of the Coin

Asking, when is chest pain not serious, should be followed by asking the opposite question: when is chest pain serious?

Chest pain can be caused by heart attack, probably the most life-threatening condition. Other heart conditions can also cause chest pain, and should receive medical attention.

Pleurisy, with its sharp, localized chest pain, is made worse when you cough or breathe in. Pleurisy is caused by inflammation of the membrane lining the chest cavity and covering the lungs. A blood clot can lodge in a lung artery, blocking blood flow to the tissue of the lungs. This condition, a pulmonary embolism, is similar to pleurisy in that the localized chest pain is made worse by a cough or deep breath. Other lung conditions can also cause chest pain.

Shingles, a nerve infection caused by the same virus that causes chickenpox, often causes chest pain. This is a sharp, burning pain. It may begin a few hours or a day before a band of blisters appears on your back and chest.

Err on the Side of Caution

If you cannot find an explanation for your chest pain, and it persists, take an aspirin and seek emergency medical care. If your pains feel like pressure or tightness in your chest, do you have these other symptoms?

1. shortness of breath

2. sweating

3. nausea

4. dizziness

5. pain radiating to one or both arms or neck

If your chest pain includes any of those symptoms, seek emergency medical care immediately.

Do not worry about what people will think if your chest pain is not serious. Chest pain is one of the most frequent reasons people call for emergency medical help. Often that chest pain is not related to a heart problem. You may be embarrassed if that happens to you. Don’t be. Even if your chest pain is not serious, it is better to go to the emergency room for evaluation.

CAUTION: The author is not a medical professional, and offers the information in this article for educational purposes only. Please discuss it with your health care provider before relying on it in any way.

Colds – Hot and Cold – Winter Health

Preventing colds and the flu can be summed up in three words: Wash your hands. The viruses that cause colds and the flu most readily enter our bodies by means of our hands. Wash your hands after shopping. Remind your children to wash their hands as soon as they come home from school. A little “hysterical hygiene” goes a long way to keeping colds at bay.

Of course, there are herbs that can be used to help thwart colds and the flu.

Yarrow is a clear favorite, especially as a tincture. Teachers, moms, and wise children find a dose of 5-25 drops of yarrow tincture in the morning in some liquid reduces the likelihood of getting sick by more than half.

Astragalus is gaining fame for its ability to support strong immune system functioning. I throw a few tongue-depressor-like pieces in my soups, where they infuse their goodness without imparting much flavor. Powdered astragalus can be added to almost anything, from oatmeal to pancakes, soups to gravies. And there is always the tincture, which works well in doses of 1-3 dropperfuls a day. (If at all possible, use domestic astragalus, rather than that from China.)

Eleuthero, which used to be called Siberian ginseng, is another immune system nourisher, used in the same ways as astragalus: cooked into food or taken as a tincture.

And don’t forget honey. A spoonful at the first sign of a sore throat or runny nose can kill the bacteria responsible and help you get better fast. (Note: Do not give honey to babies under 12 months old.)

And if you do get sick, here’s my favorite way to get well fast.

  • Treat a cold cold with heat.
  • Treat a hot cold with cold.

This may sound too easy, but it is actually one of the most effective ways I know of to minimize the severity and duration of a cold (or the flu). I first learned about cold colds and hot colds when I was studying Five Element Theory with a sweetheart who was attending acupuncture school.

It is important to remember that “cold” and “hot” don’t refer to temperature; they refer to what we might call metabolism. Thus, the person with a cold cold could very well have a raging fever and the person with a hot cold may have no fever at all. Similarly, hot foods and herbs are not necessarily cooked, and cold foods and herbs need not be refrigerated.

So how can we tell the difference between a cold cold and a hot cold? And what are cold herbs and hot herbs, cold foods and hot foods?

The person with a cold cold (or a cold flu) is pale. Their bodily fluids are copious and without color: The nose runs with clear or white mucus; the bowels are loose and the feces are light in color; urination is profuse and colorless. The tongue may be coated with a white moss. If there is fever, it is accompanied by chills. The person with a cold cold seeks heat and hot foods.

The person with a hot cold (or a hot flu) is ruddy; the face, or at least the cheeks, are very red. The eyes may feel dry and irritated. Their bodily fluids are scant and dark: nasal mucus is dry, yellowish, or “stopped up;” the bowels slow and feces are hard; urination is infrequent and highly colored. The tongue may be red or coated with a yellow moss. If there is a fever, it is “raging.” The person with a hot cold seeks coolness and has little appetite.

When you have a cold cold, indulge your desire for heating foods and herbs: Drink lots of hot spicy herbal teas with honey*, such as ginger tea, cinnamon tea, or any of the spicy “Yogi Tea” type blends. Nourish yourself with chicken soup, beef broth, miso soup. Enjoy baked winter squash, baked potatoes, baked yams, baked garlic. Eat lots of olive oil, ghee, butter, olives, and avocados. Eat beans and eat the warming grains: kasha, rye, oats. Stay warm; take a hot bath or a hot shower and wrap up snugly before going to sleep.

When you have a hot cold, indulge your desire for frozen fruit smoothies. Drink lemon and honey* water, iced nettle infusion, hibiscus and mint teas. Nourish yourself with seaweed salads, cucumber sandwiches, and fresh tomatoes with basil. Enjoy berries and melons, green salads, and roasted fowl. Eat the cooling grains: corn, millet, spelt. Eat a little something even if your appetite is small. Stay cool; take off your shoes and socks and put your bare feet on the ground. But keep covers handy when you go to sleep.

You see, cold colds turn into hot colds and vice versa. They don’t stay the same the whole time you are sick. So be prepared to pull the covers up to your chattering teeth and flowing nose even if you went to bed stuffed up and sweltering. Or to throw off the pile of covers you clutched hours earlier. The real beauty of this idea of hot colds and cold colds is the premise that everything, even a cold, will change and so the cure comes not from knowing the right answer, but in following the flow of the sickness and offering appropriate treatments. I imagine a balance scale, swinging back and forth between hot and cold, with me gently damping the swings, making each one a little less severe, until single-pointed stillness – health – is regained.

Whether dealing with a hot cold or a cold cold, you can eat as much of the neutral nourishing foods – rice, wheat, fish, honey*, and yogurt – as you wish. But, beware of taking vitamin C while harboring a cold or the flu; it is extremely cooling.

I hope these tips for preventing and dealing with colds and the flu help you, and those you love, stay in glowing good health all winter long.

Green Blessings.

(*Note: Do not give honey to babies under 12 months old.)

Legal Disclaimer: This content is not intended to replace conventional medical treatment. Any suggestions made and all herbs listed are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease, condition or symptom. Personal directions and use should be provided by a clinical herbalist or other qualified healthcare practitioner with a specific formula for you. All material contained herein is provided for general information purposes only and should not be considered medical advice or consultation. Contact a reputable healthcare practitioner if you are in need of medical care. Exercise self-empowerment by seeking a second opinion.

The Causes and Symptoms of Bronchitis

The cough that’s been keeping you awake all night for more than 2 weeks now may be Bronchitis. If you are unaware about the symptoms of bronchitis, then you are not alone. Often people prolong their illness mistaking bronchitis to be flu.

Bronchitis is referred to as an acute inflammation of the air passages within the lungs. Due to infection, the windpipe and the large and small bronchi (airways) within the lungs become inflamed. This is when bronchitis occurs and the thin mucous lining of these airways becomes irritated and swollen. As a result of the inflammation, the cells of the mucous lining may leak fluids too into the lungs. This secretion from the lungs leads to reflex coughing so as to clear the secretions. Both adults and children are susceptible to bronchitis and exhibit the same symptoms when infected. In the case of infants, the symptoms of bronchitis are a lot similar to asthma and require immediate medical attention. Patients of asthma when contact the disease, get asthmatic bronchitis.

The main cause of bronchitis is flu. The flu is caused by several viruses including influenza A and B, which then develops in to bronchitis. There is usually a case of an upper respiratory infection that leads to bronchitis. The disease is also caused by a number of bacteria including Mycoplasma pneumoniae, which causes so-called “walking pneumonia.” Other causes of bronchitis include- infections post the inhalation of irritating fumes or dust, chemical solvents and smoke (including tobacco smoke). Bronchitis can become symptoms in the case of elderly patients or people with poor immunity or those who smoke or those who have repeated exposure to lung irritants.

Bronchitis is both contagious as well as non-contagious. Bronchitis that is viral or bacterial in nature is potentially contagious and patient needs to be isolated. However, if bronchitis is due to smoking, air pollution, or other inhaled irritants, then it is not contagious.

Now on to one of the most important things, which is- how to recognize the symptoms of bronchitis? The telling signs of bronchitis are fever with chills, muscle aches, nasal congestion, and sore throat. The constant dry cough is one of the most common symptoms of bronchitis. In case the cough produces phlegm in significant amount, then it is an indication of an infection in the lower respiratory tract and the lungs. These symptoms can be confused with the ones of pneumonia.

Patients suffering from acute bronchitis have continued forceful coughing that causes soreness in the chest and abdominal muscles. In the extreme cases, a patient can even injure his chest wall or lose consciousness after a coughing spasm. Wheezing is another common symptom that the patients of bronchitis exhibit. Asthmatic bronchitis symptoms include wheezing and shortness of breath, apart from the other signs of bronchitis.

If you are suffering from these acute symptoms, you must turn to your health care practitioner for medical assistance. If you are traveling or your regular doctor is unavailable, then you can try telemedicine sources on the internet to get bronchitis treatment. These sites have expert doctors, who can write a prescription for your online, and you can get relief from the medicines prescribed by them. Do not ignore the symptoms of this painful disease and get medical help at the earliest and at your convenience from online doctors.

How Much Compensation Will My Elbow Injury Get Me?

Taking a look at the compensation figures published in the 9th Edition of the Judicial Studies Board Guidelines, the figures for elbow injury compensation claim amounts are interesting reading.

The Judicial Studies Board usually divides each type of injury into a number of different categories based on the severity of the injury and your chances of making a recovery. These categories are usually minor, moderate, serious and very severe.

Minor elbow injury – £1,000 and £8,000

Minor elbow injuries are things like a fracture, tennis elbow syndrome or a laceration injury (a severe cut). The vast majority of people who suffer elbow injuries will find their claims fall into the ‘minor’ category, which means their claims will be worth somewhere between £1,000 and £8,000.

Moderately severe elbow injury – £10,000 and £20,500

Moderately severe elbow injuries are those where your ability to move your elbow is impaired but you don’t require any surgery and you haven’t been left with a major disability. Injuries at this level will be worth between £10,000 and £20,500.

Severe Elbow Injury – between £25,000 to £35,000

A severe elbow injury is one that has left you with a permanent disability, usually meaning you won’t be able to move the elbow joint. Very few people are involved in accidents where they suffer these types of injuries, although it is possible in the case of catastrophic car accidents and workplace accidents. This level of injury will be worth in the region of £25,000 to £35,000.

Carpometacarpal Joint Pain – A Pain In The Thumb

The thumb, with its unique ability to touch the other fingers, is hardly noticed by us until we have some sort of problem with it. That’s when we become aware of its versatility and usefulness. One of the common complaints of the thumb is carpometacarpal joint pain. To put it in layman’s terms, it is arthritis of the thumb joint. It causes pain at the base of the thumb when you pinch or grip something. The joint at the base of the thumb allows for it to be swiveled and pivoted and it is called the basal joint, or the carpometacarpal joint. This type of arthritis of the thumb joint, is common with those who are prone to osteoarthritis. This problem can afflict almost anyone; however, the degree of pain and response to treatment varies.

The basal joint, due to its constant usage, is particularly prone to wear. This causes the basal joint to get arthritic, causing pain, swelling and tenderness. In some people it is just a trivial pain and they ignore it. However, in others, the pain is from moderate to severe and would require medical attention and, in extreme cases, even surgery.

If the pain is mild, you can simply apply ice it for about 15 minutes to provide sufficient relief. There are many over the counter non-steroidal anti inflammatory medications available, such as ibuprofen, aspirin etc. However, it is advisable to be cautious, as there may be possible side effects. You could also wear a brace which supports the wrist and thumb. Physiotherapy can also be of help. If none of these help in easing the pain, then it is time to seek medical help.

The doctor, with his expertise, has many more options for treatment of the pain. Once the doctor has confirmed that the problem is actually caused by carpometacarpal joint pain, he may prescribe a stronger medicine. He could prescribe hand therapy or make you wear a custom prescription splint. He may give a cortisone injection to the joint. As a last option he may prescribe reconstructive surgery.

There are many different types of operations for relieving carpometacarpal joint pain. The most common operation involves total reconstruction. This is a three stage process involving different bones of the thumb and wrist, tendons and steel pins etc. Recovery usually takes about three months. The wrist and thumb will have to be kept in splints for about 4 to 6 weeks. Then, exercises have to be done to improve the strength and flexibility, and it is generally done under supervision. It is advisable to go easy on the wrist for a couple of months until it regains its full strength.

The patient’s response to treatment is varied. For some, the ice and OTC medication are enough. For others, the cortisone shot does the trick, if not permanently, it lasts for quite some time. Most of those who underwent surgery get relief, but about 20% will develop a new symptom such as numbness, tenderness, no improvement in pinch strength, reduced flexibility of thumb movement, etc.

Carpometacarpal joint pain, can be ignored if it does not decrease the quality of life. For those who cannot ignore it, it is better to seek attention at an early stage. At an advanced stage, treatment and cure can be very difficult, if not impossible and the damage may be irreversible.

Fracture – Its Management

Management of fracture involves both first aid and further treatment by health professionals – doctors, nurses and physiotherapist.

1. First aid management

This is the treatment you give to the patient before the arrival of a medical doctor or before transferring the patient to the hospital.

i. Make sure the airway is patent. If there is any obstruction clear it away.

ii. Check for breathing. If no breathing, then institute breathing through the mouth-to-mouth or mouth-to-nose respiration.

iii. Ensure there is circulation. Listen to the heart beat or check the pulse. If not heart beat, start CPR

iv. Call for help

v. Arrest any external haemorrhage (bleeding)

vi. Immobilise affected part. Get enough hands before moving the patient. This helps to minimize further tissue damage. Immobilization can be achieved through the use of mechanical splint or body splint.

vii. Open wounds may be cleaned and sterile dressings applied. Do not make any attempt to reduce the fracture if the limb is in an abnormal position or alignment.

viii. Treat for shock if there are signs. Remove clothing through the uninjured side.

ix. Remove rings from the fingers in case of fracture of the arm or hand. This is to prevent the ring cutting off blood supply to the fingers and subsequently gangrene when massive swelling occurs.

x. Do not give anything by mouth in case the patient would need a general anaesthesia in hospital.

2. Reduction: Reduction involves bringing the bones into proper alignment or their pre-injury positions. It helps to restore the shape and length of the bone thereby promoting their union. Reduction is achieved in two ways:

a. Closed Reduction: This involves manipulating the bones externally without use of surgery.

b. Open Reduction: Involves the use of surgery to restore bone alignment when external manipulation cannot give the desired result. It is also employed when there is displacement of bone fragments or when tissue or blood clots are lodged between the ends of the fractured bone. An incision is made into the fracture site under general anaesthesia and realignment is carried out.

3. Immobilization: Immobilization is done after bone reduction to ensure the limb is not moving for a specific period of time. Immobilization is usually done through application of traction, cast or splint. Cast involves the application of the Plaster of Paris bandage around the site and allowed to dry to provide support for the part and the joint below and above the fracture point.

Traction on the other hand involves applying a force to pull the end of the limb and also a counter traction in the opposite direction to create a balance. Splint in form of metal, plastic or plaster of Paris can be applied to extend over the joint immediately above and below the fracture to prevent movement.

4. Exercises: Limbs should be moved through a range of motion to prevent joint stiffness, muscle atrophy, renal calculi or hypercalcaemia from arising. The exercise of the legs improves circulation and promotes bone healing.

5. Physical care: Pay proper attention to pressure areas. Patient should be told not to alleviate itching by pushing coins, spoons, sticks, combs, etc into the cast. Should they push any hard object into the cast it would produce pressure and pains. Fingers and toes distal to the cast should be bathed and lightly massaged at least once daily if irritation occurs.

6. Nutrition: Patient should be encouraged to eat well balanced diet to aid tissue repair. Increase fibres in patient’s food to prevent constipation if the patient is confined to bed. Protein and vitamin c should be increased to aid healing. Patient should also eat foods containing calcium which aid the formation of callus needed for the bone repair.

7. Diversional therapy: Occupational therapy and diversional therapy such as reading, movies, radio, and handicraft should be employed to help reduce boredom or depression.

8. Skin care: Skin over the elbows, sacrum, shoulders and ankles should be cleaned and powdered at least 4hourly to prevent pressure sore.

9. Self care: Patient should be encouraged to carry out assisted self care. He should be taught to carry out deep-breathing and coughing exercises which help to prevent circulatory impairment and pulmonary complications.

10. Elimination: The nurse should assist the patient unto the bedpan if the patient is on traction since patient may find it difficult to raise himself unto the bedpan. Enema should be given if there is constipation or faecal impaction.

11. Rehabilitation: Patient should not be allowed to move out of bed immediately after the removal of traction if the patient has been confined to bed and the foot of bed elevated. This is to prevent fainting attack and possibility of falling. The head of the bed should be elevated for sometime for proper readjustment before patient is finally allowed out of bed.

The physiotherapist should be employed to help patient with exercise and gradual regain of the use of the affected limb and also to minimize stiffness and muscle atrophy. Both passive and active exercises are encouraged. Patient is also taught how to use crutches and canes to assist movement while recovering from fracture of the lower limb.

What is Jujutsu? Part 2 of a 3 Part Series

The following are examples of why someone trained in Jujutsu has many different skills or methods of fighting.  

Evading (Tai Sabaki) is one of the main concepts that make up the core of most jujutsu methods or systems (styles) of jujutsu being taught today all over the world. There are many ways to evade the attack. You can move your feet to move your body out of harm’s way (ashi sabaki). ASHI = means foot / SABAKI = meaning movement.

You can sway your body left or right to slip on coming head shots just by leaning. You can bob and weave to evade angular attacks. You can pull your hips way back to evade a belly slash from a knife attack. You can turn your right shoulder backwards to go with your opponents shove or push to your right shoulder by twisting your waist. You can also step up invading your opponents space (get right in his face) to evade a baseball bat swing or a roundhouse kick to your head. You can fall to the ground to evade a sword attack or you can dive roll over a wall or high fence to avoid being shot. 

Ate Waza / or Atemi Waza = striking can be like Karate.  How to punch properly. How to use open handed strikes. How use knee and elbow strikes. How to kick with your ball of foot or heel, ankle, shin etc. How to hip check, head butt, strike with your shoulders, your back, and your belly even with your neck. Forearm smashing & hitting with your biceps and tricep muscles. How to body slam into some one using your entire body like a battering ram which was very popular thing to do back then with your armor on after getting out of the way from a spear attack or sword attack. 

Atemi Jutsu is the ability to use ate waza along with strategy and science of anatomy and pressure points. Also to use your strikes in combination with everything else. ATEMI = means to strike.

Note: Atemi waza only means striking techniques and the study of anatomical pressure points on the human anatomy, but Atemi Jutsu is the science of all these striking techniques coupled together with fighting strategy of life and death. It is the science of how it all fits together during violent encounters.

Joint Locking techniques (Kansetsu Waza) is how to control an opponent that does not want to be taken alive. Back in the day when everyone was wearing body armor, punching and kicking did not do so well. Joint locks, however, worked great with someone wearing armor.  The armor didn’t stop their joints from being twisted but it did protect them against punching and kicking attacks. So today this is what most Police personnel use all over the world today. 

Throwing techniques (Nage-Waza) is one way of ending a fight fast and using your opponent weight against themselves. Throws and foot sweeps along with reaps work really well when practiced properly. You can throw a person double your weight and size. This can be a major plus when defending against more than one opponent or an opponent wearing body armor or a winter jackets.  A throw can and will end a fight quick or give you that added advantage over stronger people. With little practice any one can learn good throws and foot-sweeps or reaps.

Escapes (Fusegi) is a very effective set of skills to have. This is where others grab you and place you in a head-lock or bear hug or even place you into a painful joint lock. You can get out of just about any lock or hold. This knowledge is a great confident builder. Escape choke holds, arm bars and more. Fusegi also means defense. 

Rolling & Falling (Ukemi) I cannot believe how many people have thanked me already for teaching them how to roll and fall. This past winter there were a lot of people who automatically tucked their head when they slipped out on the ice. No injury. Rolling and falling also helps you get out of joint locks and grabs. They are ways to counter different joint locks. If someone picks you up and throws you to the ground (SLAM!), you can fall without injury and then counter them. Rolls are also used in Jujutsu ground fighting to actually fight. By rolling into your opponent, you can break his lower limbs or even take down multiple opponents by rolling around and slamming into your attackers. Remember you were wearing armor and movement on the ground was limited. Log rolls, triangle rolls, forward and backwards rolls are all great for fighting with. 

Bone Breaking (Kopo Jutsu) in Jujutsu, is when we learn how to strike and break bones. A broken bone is no joke. Some time fights were ended with just a broken collar bone or tail bone etc. How about a broken rib? Ouch! Breathing would then become very difficult. In Jujutsu we have but are not limited to, bone breaking and bone shattering.

Disarming is being able to take your opponents weapon away from them and then use their own weapon on them. Again this is great for Law Enforcement.

Training With Cerebral Palsy – Strength Training

Cerebral palsy is a condition that arises due to a group of disorders in the nervous system and the brain. People with cerebral palsy find difficulty in movement, seeing, hearing, thinking and learning. CP is a lifelong disease that has no cure! If a person suffering from this condition has to be made independent, it is possible only if the prime cause of this condition is dealt with, which is strengthening of the muscles.

Cerebral palsy training includes a lot of things that a person suffering from this condition needs to learn so that he/she can live by their own. To help a person in movement, strength training or resistive training should be given. If this therapy is given along with other exercises then it can increase muscle strength and flexibility. It also prevents atrophy of muscles which is a rare condition that can occur in children and adults suffering from cerebral palsy.

People with no CP can walk and move freely without any problem in movement. This is because the muscles and tendons are stretched while performing daily functions. However, this is not possible with people having cerebral palsy. They have difficulty in performing their day-to-day actions because the muscles grow slower than the bones which results in a serious complication called contracture. This is where cerebral palsy training plays an important role. Strength training helps to keep the muscles strong and limber so that a chance of contracture reduces.

Similarly, leg muscles are vital for posture and walking ability. Since people with cerebral palsy have weaker leg muscles, there is a tendency for them to crouch. Also, they may develop “scissor gait” which is a condition wherein they will walk on their toes with knees bent inward. To prevent this, strength training is very essential. Besides, cerebral palsy training aims at significantly improving a person’s gross motor skills such as sitting, standing and walking which are a part and parcel of any person’s daily activities.

There are many benefits that can be achieved from strength training. Cerebral palsy training will help people increase their walking speed, walking efficiency, motor activity and reduce spasticity. Besides, as the training proceeds, muscles will start gaining strength and flexibility which will aid in making them have a normal body movement. Thus, with the help of cerebral palsy strength training a person may learn to walk, sit, stand and move with their maximum potential which in turn helps them become more independent.

A person with CP has a lot of disorders which makes their life difficult. Only with the right support and care from people around them, they will have a hope to live. If the condition is very serious, then they can be put in institutions which will treat them as well as take care of them with the help of a team dedicated for such patients. Hence, it is our duty to train them sufficiently so that they can live a life of their own without depending too much on others to perform their daily activities.

Stopping Sleep Paralysis

If you’ve never experienced sleep paralysis you might wonder what the fuss is all about. For those who have however the resultant panic attack and fear that grips you will definitely leave you looking for ways of stopping sleep paralysis. This neurological condition affects nearly everyone at one time or another. Its only when the attacks become more frequent that you should worry.

To be able to stop sleep paralysis it might help to know what it is caused by. Then by avoiding these things the incidents can be reduced or totally gotten rid of. Basically this condition manifests itself during the times when you are experiencing a dream and you are suddenly interrupted. When this happens you might find that you cannot voluntarily control your muscles you are in fact momentarily paralyzed.

The time you are trying to react do you ever notice that you are trying to react to the things that you are seeing in your dream. Now imagine the chaos that would happen if the body allowed you to physically respond to something that’s not there. So the one favor you can do for yourself is try not to panic. Stopping sleep paralysis is about avoiding things that are likely to affect your sleep pattern.

Try avoiding smoking; drinking alcohol or taking in caffeine just before you sleep. Do sleep in a room that is able to keep light and sound out. Maintain a regular sleep pattern too.

These are just a few things that you can do to alleviate the condition. If you are interested in stopping sleep paralysis then you must combine these methods and techniques into a comprehensive program and routine that you can follow. Just doing these things randomly won’t help.

The Fundamentals of Hernias – Corrective Hernia Surgery Procedures

There was a time when the problem of a hernia used to be a fairly serious issue for any person. However, with the advancement of technology, hernia surgery has dropped down into the category of minor surgeries. A hernia is a problem which shows up in the form of a bulge, either in your groin or abdominal area. This bulge is simply one of the inner organs protruding through the weakened wall of your abdomen or groin. There are primarily five different types of herniae that may require you to go in for hernia surgery. The following are some details.

1. Incision hernia: This is a direct result of one of the earlier surgeries wherein the surgical wound has not healed completely.

2. Umbilical hernia: As the name suggests, these herniae occur in the lower abdomen. As per statistics, this problem usually plagues children of African descent, even though adults in the developed world can also get affected. Obese or pregnant women have also been known to require hernia surgery because of this problem.

3. Inguinal hernia: This is a hernia which is the most common of the lot. In fact, around 75 percent of hernia cases fall under this category. Usually, the location of inguinal hernia is in the groin area, requiring the surgeon to be especially careful during the whole of the hernia surgery.

4. Femoral hernia: The location where this type of hernia occurs is just below the inguinal hernia. Notably, it is difficult to differentiate between an inguinal hernia and a femoral hernia.

5. Diaphragmatic hernia: With diaphragmatic hernia, the protrusion usually does not show on the outside. This type of hernia is a case where abdominal organs push through into the chest cavity due to weakening of the diaphragm.

Symptoms that should be considered as an early warning that you should get hernia surgery done include the bulge, discomfort and unnatural pressure while lifting heavy objects, discomfort while coughing, problems while in the bathroom, and extreme discomfort with exercises or sports. Hernia surgery involves the strengthening of the weakened section of the wall by way of introducing a mesh into the system. The mesh is sewn into the weakened section to provide it with support and to make it stronger. However, there are multiple post surgery care tips that you need to follow in order to avoid any problems later.

Halos – Bremer and PMT Types – Cervical Stabilization Needed For An Unstable Fracture

Do you want to learn more about halos?

Do you know anyone that is in a halo currently?

1.) Introduction

Halos are used for individuals that have sustained a serious cervical spine fracture. They are also used for people as a cervical distraction device for surgery or to provide external support for someone that may be going into surgery for their c-spine. There are two different kinds of halos that are used on a regular basis in medical settings. These would be the halo made by DePuy called the Bremer halo and another called a PMT halo. – Our goal here is not to say which of these is better, but that both exist to provide support to an unstable cervical spine.

2.) Who Provides Halos?

That is a good question. Medical professionals known as orthotists (brace specialists) typically provide halos to patients. They usually team up with a physician during the application process. Typically the physician will be the one to hold a patient’s head to maintain proper alignment and to provide pain medication to the head pin sites. The licensed orthotist will then apply the halo, as the physician monitors the position of the patient’s c-spine.

3.) Do People Wear a Halo All Day?

The answer to this question is, yes. Patients should never attempt to remove their own halo. There might be serious consequences to this, such as paralysis. The removal of a halo should be done by a local, licensed orthotist. Typically, the providing orthotist (brace specialist) will be the individual that removes the halo. A person will typically wear a halo until their c-spine fracture has completed the healing process. After a halo is removed, a rigid collar can be applied to help wean the patient off the halo while still providing cervical support.

4.) Are There Alternatives To Halos?

For serious c-spine fractures another device can be provided, but is typically thought of as a second option. The brace is called a CTO. This acronym stands for a cervical thoracic orthosis. This brace helps to hold the head in position and will include the neck and part of the chest when it is worn. It provides a lot of support but it is not considered to be as supportive as a halo for unstable cervical fractures. Halos are the only orthosis that will limit motion in all three planes. These are the sagittal, coronal and transverse planes.

*Note: This is health information. Although it is good information, it is not considered to be medical advice on bracing. Medical advice should be provided by your local, licensed orthotist regarding halos and other braces.

Isthmic Spondylolisthesis As a Cause of Sciatica

Isthmic Spondylolisthesis will often lead to sciatica and cause acute back pain. If not treated in time the symptoms progressively worsen over time leading to a degenerative disorder. If frequent and intense back pain and tightness in the hamstrings is your affliction, here is more information on the disorder including what is Isthmic Spondylolisthesis, its causes and symptoms and available treatment alternatives.

What is Isthmic Spondylolisthesis?

Isthmic Spondylolisthesis is a spinal disorder caused due to instability of the vertebral column where one vertebrae slips over the other. The condition commonly occurs in the fifth and sixth vertebrae of the lumbar region and the first vertebrae in the sacral area. The condition is caused due to a genetic defect in almost 4% of the population while other cases of the disorder may be attributed to a host of other reasons.

The causes

The primary cause of Isthmic Spondylolisthesis is a movement in the vertebrae caused due to the fracture of a small bone that connects the two vertebrae. Known as the pars interarticualris, this is a very thin piece of bone with poor blood supply that is prone to fractures due to stress or trauma.

Although not a congenital problem, the fracture occurs at an early age (5 to 7 years); however, the patient may not feel the pain and discomfort for several years.

Adolescent athletes are also susceptible to Isthmic Spondylolisthesis; as a matter of fact, a marked increase has been observed in the number of adolescents suffering from the disorder.

The diagnosis of the condition is done by analyzing the degree of slippage; or the extent to which one vertebral body covers the other. The intensity of the symptoms is directly proportional to the extent of displacement. Different grades are assigned to the disorder based on this factor such as:

  • Grade 1: 25% slippage
  • Grade 2: 25%-50%
  • Grade 3: 50% to 75%
  • Grade 4: More than 75%

Fortunately, most patients suffer from Grade 1 Isthmic Spondylolisthesis

Symptoms of Isthmic Spondylolisthesis

The symptoms of the disorder include:

  • Sciatica caused when the disc break down and limit the amount of space given to the exiting root nerve
  • Pain in the legs, thighs, lower back that radiates to the area around the buttocks
  • Discomfort and intense pain after exercise
  • Leg weakness
  • Muscle spasms
  • Tightness in the hamstring muscles
  • Irregular gait

Treatment Options

In the initial stages when the disorder becomes symptomatic, a physician would usually recommend regular treatment interventions for pain relief that include:

  • Oral steroids for pain relief
  • NSAIDs such as Ibuprofen
  • Physical therapy to stretch the hamstring muscles
  • Chiropractic manipulations
  • Epidural injections used in the area of the pars fracture to reduce inflammation.

Surgery is also an option; however, it is not considered unless the patient has not responded well to traditional forms of pain relief treatment. One of the reasons for the reluctance of doctors to use surgery to correct the disorder is the complexity of the procedure, risks associated with it and the extended recovery period.

However, in some patients Grade 1 Isthmic Spondylolisthesis may progress to Grade 2; in such cases, surgery may the only way to prevent further displacement of the vertebral body and the resultant disability.

The principles of Muscle Balance Therapy can help you strategically assess your individual muscle imbalances and develop a very targeted corrective program to meet your specific needs. More detailed information about this can be found on our website below.

Throat Constriction Or Spasm Conditions of the Esophagus and Reflux on the Increase

Are you getting food stuck at the top of your throat or chest? It feels like your esophagus has collapsed and you can’t even swallow the saliva in your mouth. What happens is your lower esophagus muscle or sphincter muscle doesn’t relax properly to let food enter your stomach. Your muscles in your esophagus that allow food or liquid to pass are usually closed when you are not swallowing.

 

It may seem to be right the opposite, but your throat is normally closed, until you swallow. I personally have experienced this sticking or closed throat situation and it was absolutely nerve racking the first time or two. Not that each time I’ve experienced it hasn’t been, but I have learned to deal with it in a more calming fashion now.

The worst reaction to your throat contraction or sticking is to panic. Once you realize your throat will not allow you to swallow and food is lodged, you can still breathe, so relax as much as possible. The time it takes for your throat to open can vary considerably. My throat constrictions situations have varied from a few seconds to several minutes. There was one occasion where it was stuck for approximately 45 minutes. The types of food usually are common that trigger these throat constrictions. From coated pills, to lettuce and red meats are the most common among sufferers of throat constriction. As time goes on and you encounter more occasions of throat constrictions you may have more foods that become triggers. Cheeses and baked potatoes may also cause you to experience the throat constrictions too.

My first experience actually led me to the ER to have the red meat stuck in my throat to be pushed down with the help of ER personnel. I later went to an ear nose and throat doctor that took a camera scope down my throat and determined some minor throat abrasions but nothing more.

Some other interesting facts that I have gather with my personal experiences with my throat closing while eating is, it’s an immediate knowing as to what is happening and as I said before, do not panic, it is not life threatening. You can still breathe. If you can get outside so that you can continue to spit your saliva as it continues to build in your throat, do that. You never realizes how much you salivate until you can’t swallow it. So many helpful souls will try to get you to drink something. This doesn’t work. If you can take very small sips of water. Any other fluid usually contains sugar or other flavors that may prevent the throat from opening.

Another fact that seems to be quite obvious is the age factor. Since my experiences, I have talked to others and it seems to happen over 40 years of age more often. The unmistakable gurgling sound when a person is experiencing the throat collapse seems universal.

Since I have not sought more medical attention, being the typical male, I have done some things that affected the frequency of this event. I chose to lose some weight and mysteriously this throat constriction problem simple went away after I had lost approximately 15 pounds. I thought maybe this constriction thing is tied to being over weight. It held true until about a year later I had regained the

weight I lost and my throat spasms or constrictions returned.

A friend of mine for some 30 years, is a few years older than me, and he too has fought this problem. He had had a throat cancer and fortunately has beat that, but he later had the throat spasms. He went for several throat stretching treatments and felt relief for a period of a few months before it returned again.

My brother is 45 years old and it has started happening to him. He is more doctor shy, than I am, and has used me as a unqualified medical advisor or guinea pig. This is not advisable but it’s the reality. So, aging is a factor and reflux also seems to tie in to this condition as well.

Reflux is more treatable from an medical understanding of what is happening. With reflux, this condition is caused by spicy foods and a weak stomach flap. Laying down or trying to sleep can be a bad trigger to reflux. The stomach flap relaxes and doesn’t do it’s job of keeping food in your stomach. As the flap is open when it should not be, your stomach acids are released into your throat and literally burns your esophagus or throat.

Reflux treatments vary, but one option is to have a minor surgery to tighten the flap, for lack of a better medical explanation. This is a more long term treatment. There are other treatments available and without surgery. Each person is affected somewhat differently or to differing degrees, so you have to decide your what your options are and the treatment you choose.

As we baby boomers continue to live and age, the health conditions that we face will also increase, and with health insurance so out of control, if we can help each other to better describe our conditions, hopefully we can control our costs and doctor visits as well.

So, in conclusion, I would first try to lose weight, at least 10 pounds and see if the throat constrictions go away or lessen. I would strongly suggest staying away from coated pills. This seems to be a chemical triggering affect, of the coated caplet and your throat sensors. I would advise you to select your foods wisely. Certain foods trigger this problem and if you are determined to eat what you wish, then cut your food in small bites and drink plain water with your food. Drinks that have sugar in them seem to be a bad combination with certain foods.

For some reason this medical condition is not widely known or understood with many doctors and you will probably be told that when this condition occurs, the food is actually further down your throat than you think, this is incorrect. It feels like the blockage is right at the top of your throat and it is in most cases.