Depression, Stress, Anger & Heart Disease

According to recent surveys, about 75 percent of Americans are worried, depressed or angry about the economy. All of us, it seems, know someone who has lost their job recently, and many of us worry that we might be next. Sleep is hard to come by for many of us during these turbulent and uncertain times, and as I have discussed in recent articles on this website, chronic sleep deprivation, itself, has previously been linked to higher mortality rates in some clinical studies.

A number of illnesses have previously been linked to periods of prolonged stress, and particularly those situations that leave people feeling “helpless and hopeless” with respect to the events that are causing them to feel stressed. Prolonged periods of severe stress tend to disrupt the normal function of critical systems in our bodies, including the brain, the GI tract, the immune system, the reproductive system, and the cardiovascular system. Two important and timely news studies, just published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, further add to our understanding of the potentially adverse impact of chronic stress on our health.

In the first study, from Harvard University, more than 63,000 women participating in the enormous prospective Nurses’ Health Study were evaluated. All of these women underwent extensive psychological and physical evaluations in 1992, 1996, and again in 2000. None of these women had any clinical history of coronary artery disease or stroke at the time that they underwent their initial evaluation in 1992. The incidence of sudden cardiac death, heart attack, or death due to heart attack was then assessed in this huge cohort of adult women during the 8-year monitoring period. Additionally, the incidence of clinical depression (as measured by standardized mental health questionnaires and the use of antidepressant medications) was evaluated and analyzed in these patient volunteers.

The presence of clinical depression was found to significantly correlate with the risk of cardiac events in this study, even after controlling for other preexisting coronary artery disease risk factors in these 63,469 women. The presence of clinical depression was associated with a 49 percent increase in the risk of fatal heart attack (myocardial infarction) due to coronary artery disease. Sudden cardiac death was also much more common among the depressed women in this gigantic clinical study, and especially among the women who were taking antidepressant medications. In fact, the women who were taking antidepressant medications experienced more than twice the risk of sudden cardiac death (2.33-fold increased risk) when compared to the women without any history of depression or antidepressant use!

Therefore, clinical indicators of depression, including depression confirmed by standardized mental health screening questionnaires or the use of antidepressant medications, were associated with a strikingly increased risk of coronary artery disease, heart attack, fatal heart attack, and sudden cardiac death. If you believe that you are depressed (or if family or friends believe that you may be depressed), please see your physician or a mental health expert, as chronic depression can, indeed, be a matter of life or death.

The second, and related, research study that I would like to discuss today focuses more on the role of anger and hostility in coronary artery disease risk. In the 1970s and 1980s, a great deal of “pop psychology” was given over to classifying personalities into various general types. Highly driven people, who tend to be impatient, easily-angered, and prone to hostile responses, were categorized as having “Type A” personalities, while their calmer and less driven counterparts were considered to have “Type B” personalities. Type A people, it was said, are more likely to engage in risky behaviors that increased the likelihood of premature death due to accidents and cardiovascular disease. Some older research has even suggested that having a Type A personality might be directly associated with a higher risk of cardiovascular disease as a result of chronic anger and hostility, rather than indirectly from engaging in lifestyle behaviors known to increase the risk of heart disease.

In this second clinical study, researchers in London comprehensively reviewed 25 previously published clinical studies of coronary artery disease risk in healthy populations, as well as another 19 studies of patient volunteers with existing coronary artery disease. All of these studies included assessments of personality profiles among the patient volunteers who participated in these clinical research trials.

Among the studies of previously healthy volunteers, those patients who scored highly on psychological assessment tools in terms of anger and hostility were nearly 20 percent more likely to develop evidence of new coronary artery disease (including heart attack) when compared to the patients who had very low hostility and anger scores. Among the patients who were known to already have coronary artery disease at the time that they enrolled in these studies, there was a 24 percent greater likelihood of serious complications associated with coronary artery disease among the angry and hostile patients, including death due to heart attack, than was observed among the heart disease patients who were not predisposed to anger and hostility. Interestingly, as has been observed in previous research studies, the incidence of coronary artery disease events, including heart attack and death due to heart attack, appeared to be significantly higher among angry and hostile men than was observed among angry and hostile women, particularly among the study volunteers who had no prior history of coronary artery disease at the time that they enrolled in these studies.

In summary, this comprehensive review of previously published data appears to confirm the findings of earlier studies that chronic anger and hostility appear to be associated with an increased risk of coronary artery disease and heart attacks, even when other preexisting coronary artery disease risk factors are controlled for. Furthermore, this analysis suggests that having an angry and hostile predisposition is probably more dangerous for men than for women, although both genders probably experience an increased risk of heart disease if they are chronically angry or hostile. Finally, angry and hostile people who develop coronary heart disease appear to have a worse prognosis when compared with mellower folks who also have the equivalent extent of heart disease.

As with the link between chronic depression and heart disease, chronic feelings of anger and hostility appear to increase one’s risk of developing heart disease too. If you believe that you are susceptible to depression, or to regular or frequent feelings of anger and hostility towards others (or towards yourself, for that matter), then you owe it to yourself, and to those who care about you, to seek help. These mental health and personality difficulties are often extremely difficult to resolve by yourself, no matter how much insight and motivation you might already have. If you struggle with any of these issues, or if other people who know you and care about you have suggested that you have problems in these areas, then please seek help now.

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Disclaimer: As always, my advice to readers is to seek the advice of your physician before making any significant changes in medications, diet, or level of physical activity

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Dr. Wascher is an oncologic surgeon, a professor of surgery, a widely published author, and a Surgical Oncologist at the Kaiser Permanente healthcare system in Orange County, California

Recent cases of Tuberculosis

According to scientific studies, three million people die from Tuberculosis every year. A number of around eight million new discovered Tuberculosis conditions appear per year and 95% is estimated to be in developing areas. Countries like those in South America, Africa or Asia have the highest susceptibility to Tuberculosis due to the low living standards and the bad economic and social conditions.

Although the risk of Tuberculosis infection has decreased in the 1980′, in the 1990′ it already began to arise because of the high rate of immigration from countries with increased number of cases. Immigrant communities all difficult to observe, control or treat, because of the many differences between different races and cultures.

Immunity plays a tremendous role in prevention and treatment of Tuberculosis. A healthy immune system lowers the risk of catching Tuberculosis to 1 in 10 cases per year and only seldom an infected healthy organism gets to develop the active condition. HIV+ patients have a suppressed and weaken immune system and are mostly incapable to fight Mycobacterium. 1 in 10 patients with AIDS will surely suffer from active tuberculin infection, and from those with a positive skin test 1 in 2 will develop Tuberculosis. Epidemiological implications are very concerning as HIV cases tend to increase very rapidly.

One worrying issue of the TBC condition is the development of resistance to antibiotics due to fast bacterial mutations. The resistance phenomenon increases the risk of recurrence and makes recurrent cases more dangerous. Administering one single drug in the treatment of Tuberculosis tends to be dangerous as one single mutant bacillus in enough to trigger antibiotic-resistant Tuberculosis. Nowadays doctors prescribe the standard medication for this condition: Rifampicin, Isoniazide, Pyrazinamide and Ethambutol. Also Streptomycin is efficient in treating active Tuberculosis. This medication schedule will prevent the multiplication of all strains of Mycobacterium bacteria.

In our times Tuberculosis is well kept under control by good organized care systems in the civilized world. But slow developing countries are at high risk of an epidemic because of the low possibilities to prevent, supervise and treat Tuberculosis cases. Further laboratory studies are necessary to establish an efficient anti-Tuberculosis vaccine that might reduce the risk of catching the bacillus. The medical world must improve the diagnose methods as well as the available medication in order to face the hard battle with Tuberculosis. If no urgent measures are taken, the world’s population risks a new wave of uncontrollable Tuberculosis.

How To Manage Your Company’s Growth With The Organization Chart

“Nothing is more exciting than growing a prosperous business, but nothing is more dangerous for a prosperous business than growth.”

– Steve Meisenheimer

Your company is growing and you need take your organization to the next level…but:

1. Can you afford all the new people you’ll need?

2. What should your new organization look like?

3. When should you add each new position?

4. How will you manage the new hires?

5. What education and skills should each of them have?

6. What contribution should you expect from each new hire?

7. What opportunities for advancement can you promise them?

Even for someone who has done it before, answering these questions can be taxing, if not overwhelming. You might agree, however, that these questions should be answered before you begin the process. There’s nothing like getting prepared so you feel prepared.

There is a tool in the manager’s tool belt that is perfectly designed to help – the organization chart. Most have heard of it, some have drawn one, but few have grasped the full force of what it can do.

The following seven steps will guide you through how to comfortably answer each of the above questions so you can grow your company with maximum confidence.

Step One – Draw a chart of what your organization looks like today. Do this using the following format. Put the titles, names, and compensation of the person performing that function in each box. The lines between the boxes represent who reports to whom. Then put the amount of annual sales your company does at the top of the chart. This gives you a visual representation of your company. For example:

$800,000 Annual Sales

 President      Sales Manager       Office Manager     Operations Manager

(Sarah-$50k) (Jeff-$35k) (John-$45k) (Kim-$33k)

Step Two – Go back to the most fundamental (yet often disregarded) statement in your company – your vision statement. What kind organization do you need to fulfill the vision, or purpose, of your company? You can look any distance into the future, but for this example, we will look five years out.

Step Three – Decide what staff you need to add to your organization, and what positions can be outsourced. Today, it is more common than ever to outsource even your accounting and sales force responsibilities. Whenever you can shift the “people burden” on another company to handle your company’s demands versus assuming the people burden yourself, it’s better to shift it to others. People, as wonderful as they are, will be the source of your greatest expense and trouble, so make it a policy to stay as lean as you can.

Step Four – Draw a chart of the organization you will need in five years to handle the growth and to be on track to meet your vision’s requirements. Your organization chart will have nameless boxes, but put the titles and the probable compensation you foresee in each box. At the top of this future organization chart, put the sales you think an organization of that size will handle just as you did at the top of your present chart.

Step Five – Considering your future organization, now draw what your organization will need to look like in two and a half years (half way to your five-year organization) for you to consider yourself on track to achieve your five-year target. It should look exactly like the five-year chart minus the new positions needed to handle the final two and a half years of growth. As before, put titles and probable compensation in each box and put the sales you will expect of this organization at the top of the chart.

Step Six – Put the dates you will need to fill each position in your two-and-a-half-year projection for you to hit your sales forecasts (in the case of sales and marketing) or, in the case of admin or operations, to handle the extra workload your new sales will create.

Step Seven – Draft up a very simple job description for each of the positions that you will need to fill in the next two and a half years. They should include the basic responsibilities, duties, education, skills, and compensation. Growth will require more of the same jobs you now have, but it will also require new roles and responsibilities that these job descriptions will help you to think through.

You now you have a specific two-and-a-half-year plan to show what your organization needs to evolve into in order for your company to be on track to achieve your long-term vision. Moreover, your five-year organization chart now looks more credible as a long-term planning tool with this short-term plan to see it realized.

The organization chart is complemented by your company’s budget. The budget will show you what happens to your company’s sales and profitability as you plan to add each new position.

Your org chart, and your experience, will help you plan for your organization’s growth and set your recruitment targets. For instance, if it takes four months to recruit and hire a salesperson or a manager, you will know when you need to start the process of filling that position to stay on course.

You might find someone in your company who can, and is willing to do the work of a new position if you pay them a little more. This saves you the time of recruiting and the full expense of hiring and staffing that position. This is most common with managers. You have probably established a mindset of expected manager-to-staff ratios. For example, every four crews need a manager, or something similar. Looking at your company on paper, in association with a budget, allows you to question these assumptions, and see what happens to the bottom line if a greater ratio is adopted, or you can split an anticipated position’s responsibilities among your existing staff.

Advancement is a serious motivator when recruiting top talent, so sharing your organization chart with your people and your candidates (perhaps without the compensation figures), allows them to see how you are planning to grow and what opportunity they might have to grow with you.

Through these steps, you can see that you have already addressed all the above questions. By charting your present and future organization, you reveal a gap that needs to be closed. Seeing the gap, drafting the job descriptions and compensation, placing each position on a hiring timeline, and running the plan through your budget drains the anxiety from the process.

As I noted earlier, there’s nothing like getting prepared so you feel prepared. And when there is a step-by-step plan for getting prepared, you have more confidence in your plans, more confidence in your management skills, and much more confidence that your company’s vision will someday be a reality.

The Growth and Spread of Malignant Tumors

Your cells carry information in the form of DNA, which tells them how to build necessary proteins, carry out their intended purpose, as well as information to grow and divide. However, should this information become mutated, or altered, it can lead to uncontrolled growth and development of cell masses called tumors. If the tumors are malignant, they can spread throughout your body.

First, it is important to understand the difference between benign and malignant tumors. Benign tumors still occur due to unnatural cell growth, but they do not have the ability to spread. Instead, benign tumors can cause damage by pressing on nearby tissues and organs, inhibiting their normal function. While malignant tumors are much more dangerous, benign tumors still result in about 13,000 deaths in the U.S. alone every year.

Malignant tumors, on the other hand, can grow much faster than benign tumors, and they can break off from the main tumorous mass and spread to other areas of the body. This is called metastasizing. Little bits of mutated cells can leave the main tumor, and they travel through the bloodstream and lymph system. Because blood travels everywhere throughout your body, and the lymph system is almost as prolific, this can mean that a tumor near your intestines can break off and travel to anywhere from your brains to your toes.

Cancer is actually the spread of malignant tumors. If it is caught early, doctors may be able to prevent metastasis, but later stages of cancer are more difficult to treat due to the spread of cancerous tissue. Frustratingly, mesothelioma is a cancer that is hard to detect at first. This means that it can spread beyond treatment before doctors even notice that something is wrong. If you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, it is important to gather as much information as possible to help you fight this disease.

For more information regarding mesothelioma, please visit the Mesothelioma Help Center today.

Natural Pneumonia Cure – Vitamins and Minerals

An effective pneumonia cure is the use of added vitamins and minerals in your diet. The right nutrients can boost your immunity, relieve your symptoms and prevent further complications.

Vitamin C

High dose vitamin C is a fast acting pneumonia cure, particularly if taken at the first sign of infection. I recommend my patients take 500mg of vitamin C an hour until their tissues are saturated with vitamin C. At the point where the body is saturated with vitamin C, any excess spills over into the urine and stools causing loose or watery stools. This point is called bowel tolerance.

Once you have worked out your bowel tolerance level, go just below this point daily until the infection is cleared from your body.

Some people only need 5000 – 10000mg to reach tissue saturation and bowel tolerance. Others may need 50,000 mg or more to reach this point. As you get better you should find your bowel tolerance level drops.

Zinc

Zinc is a powerful pneumonia cure that boosts your white blood cells and antibody production to fight infection. If you have a sore or inflamed throat then dissolving a zinc lozenge or tablet in your mouth can bring prompt relief.

Vitamin A / Beta carotene

Vitamin A and its precursor beta carotene can heal injured epithelial tissue and quell free radical damage. Vitamin A has also been shown to lower the rate of infections so is a good preventative nutrient.

Selenium

Selenium is an excellent immune stimulant. It also enhances the absorption of vitamin E – an important antioxidant.

B Vitamins

Fatigue and exhaustion are common symptoms of infection. To help with energy levels and nerve health, a balanced B complex is an effective pneumonia cure.

Magnesium

Magnesium acts as a muscle relaxant that can relieve aching lungs and tight muscles as well as help you get a good night’s sleep. Magnesium can also be absorbed through the skin in an Epsom salt bath. Simply hop into a hot bath to which you have added a couple of cups of Epsom salts. Relax in the bath for at least 20 minutes before heading to bed for the night. You should sleep deeply and wake feeling refreshed.

The right dosage of these nutrients will vary according to your age, the severity of your infection and your activity levels.

Pleural Mesothelioma — Cancer of the Lung Lining

What is Pleural Mesothelioma?

Pleural Mesothelioma or malignant pleural mesothelioma is cancer in the layer of the lungs that can spread to the lungs. The spread of the tumor over the pleura results in pleural thickening. This hinders the reflexivity of the pleura and encases the lungs in an increasing restrictive belt. With the lungs thus restricted, they get constricted in no time and a person is always out of breath.

Pleural mesothelioma can be:

– Diffuse and malignant (carcinogenic)

– Localized and benign (non-cancerous)

Benign pleural mesothelioma can be removed surgically, but the malignant tumors are the real terror heads.

Most common among other mesothelioma cases, Pleural Mesothelioma is caused due to exposure to blue asbestos for a longer period of time, say 20 years, in which time the disease incubates only to show its fearful countenance via certain symptoms.

The symptoms of Pleural Mesothelioma

The symptoms of Pleural Mesothelioma include difficulty in breathing, difficulty in sleeping, pain in the chest and abdominal regions, blood vomits, weakness, weight loss, loss of appetite, lower back pains, persistent coughing, hoarseness of voice, sensory loss and difficulty in swallowing.

Diagnosis of Pleural Mesothelioma

The first step is to go through a chest X-ray or a CT scan (computed chest tomograph), which will reveal a pleural thickening and an effusion. This is followed by a bronchoscopy. However, it should always be left to a medical practitioner for a better understanding of the respective cases. Another method is a biopsy, which can be a needle biopsy, an open biopsy, or a thoracoscopy, where a mini camera is inserted inside the body and with that a tissue sample is attained for further diagnosis.

Treatment of Pleural Mesothelioma

Treatment is directly proportional to the time of the revelation of the disease, i.e., at an early stage the tumor can be removed through surgery.

A pioneering mesothelioma treatment option is immunotherapy, e.g., intrapleural inoculation of Bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) is a useful mesothelioma treatment in which an effort is made to intensify the immune response.

Radiation treatment and chemotherapy is probably then the answer to the malignant pleural mesothelioma, but this can aid the pain management only; there’s no escaping death with Pleural Mesothelioma.

Side effects of Treatment

The side effects and penalty of mesothelioma lung cancer treatment are more than its treatment, which is damaged healthy tissues, a state of absolute fatigue ness; excessive radiation causes the skin to become red, dry and itchy.

Other side effects of radiotherapy are nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, urinary discomfort and a sudden reduction in the number of white blood corpuscles.

The average life span of a person with Pleural Mesothelioma is up to 6 months to a year and the maximum can reach up to 5 years – the magnesium-silicate mineral fibers take its toll that’s more than painful.

Other factors that may accelerate the possibility of pleural mesothelioma are chronic lung infections, tuberculous pleuritis, radiation (Thorotrast), exposure to the simian virus 40 (SV40) or mineral fibers (Zeolite) and tobacco smoking to a certain extent.

Pleural Mesothelioma does not give a person the avenue for fair play. Though the existence depends much on the various stages of the disease, it is an ultimate killing menace that sucks out the life of the common man.

Does Cold Weather Trigger Cold Sores?

People tend to experience more cold sores in the winter. Is this due to the cold weather, hence the name – cold sores? The short answer: no. The long answer…

Cold sores are triggered by several different outside influences such as the common cold or flu and fever, stress, a weakened immune system, lack of sleep and trauma to the skin. Because most of these triggers are more prevalent in the winter, this is when cold sores are more common.

Many of these triggers relate closely to each other. When your immune system is weak, you are less likely to be able to fight off illness such as the common cold, flu and fever. These illnesses trigger cold sores, which is why cold sores are sometimes called fever blisters. You can keep your immune system strong and more able to fight illnesses by reducing your stress levels, getting enough sleep, eating healthy and excising regularly.

Cold sores also appear when there is trauma to the skin, which can be as simple as chapped lips. Make sure you keep your skin and lips well moisturized in cold, dry weather. Use lotion, lip balm and chap stick regularly. Use these products to prevent chapped and dry skin rather than to sooth it after you are already having problems. In addition, exposure to ultraviolet radiation (sun and tanning beds) triggers cold sores. So be sure to use lotion and chap stick with SPF in it.

Although cold sores are not brought on by cold weather, some of the most common triggers are most prevalent in the winter. So take precaution to avoid cold sores, especially in the winter.

Treatment of Bronchitis For Older People

Maybe you have heard about bronchitis maybe not. But regardless, this condition is becoming almost as common as coughs and colds. While not generally dangerous or fatal, without proper medical attention bronchitis can damage your respiratory system just enough so that other, more severe respiratory ailments can set it (think asthma or pneumonia).

For older people bronchitis can be a real pain in the neck as the frequent and chronic coughing it presents can be painful. Bronchitis is the inflammation of the bronchial tree which serves as the filtration system of the lungs. When the bronchial tubes are inflamed the filtering process is compromised making you more sensitive to irritants and thereby further inflammation and irritation. Bronchitis can be caused by the development of common respiratory ailments like the flu or cold, bacteria, smoking, and continuous exposure to certain chemicals whether household or industrial.

Bronchitis is further broken down into two categories namely; chronic and acute. While the treatment for acute bronchitis takes nothing more than the usual care for common respiratory illnesses which includes plenty of rest, lots of fluids, over the counter decongestants and others, chronic bronchitis on the other hand poses more of a problem. As of the moment individuals diagnosed with chronic bronchitis will find it somewhat difficult to cure their condition because there is either limited solutions or none actually exists.

Conventional medication as of the moment has no cure to offer to individuals. The only methods will be in the alleviation of the condition and prevention of further damage to the lungs. So basically this is simply saying that for those who are diagnosed with bronchitis (chronic to be exact), prevention would be the way to go. Taking simple steps like cleaning the house to prevent build-up of dust, bringing a face mask along when going out, and having your yearly flu shots can minimize the chances of worsening your condition thereby giving your natural immune system time to recover and handle the condition better in the future.

The main issue when it comes to bronchitis is with misinformation. The chances where bronchitis can be caused by bacteria is somewhere in the range of 5% or lower which simply means that antibiotics are not the solution to the problem. On the other hand, doctors are warning patients over the misuse or overuse of antibiotics to take care of bronchitis as it can make way for stronger strains of bacteria to manifest.

Remember, bronchitis can be managed and not everything will be dependent on your medication. You will need to take personal steps in order to make sure that your condition is well controlled and managed so that further damage can be prevented.

Causes of Shoulder Joint Pain

There are many causes of shoulder joint pain. Your shoulder is a ball and socket joint that is necessary for a wide variety of movements, from very small movements to large wide range movements. Most of the time you do not think much about the shoulder joint, that is until pain interrupts your natural usage. At this point, you suddenly become quite aware of just how necessary proper shoulder joint function is to your daily life.

There are several reasons you may be experiencing shoulder joint pain and here are a few of the most common causes.

Over Exertion

Over exertion is going beyond your abilities and strength, and when applied to the shoulder area is generally considered an over use injury from repetitive motion. Many jobs and even some hobbies require constant use of the shoulder, which can quickly lead to over exertion and shoulder joint pain. You see, even though the shoulder is the most movable joint in the body it is the most susceptible to injury. The upper arm ball is larger than that shoulder socket and therefore is stabilized by tendons, ligaments and muscles, which can become torn or injured from repetitive use. You will often hear the terms tendonitis or bursitis in reference to this type of shoulder pain.

Injury

A traumatic injury to the clavicle, humerus or shoulder blade can result in a great deal of shoulder pain. If you experience a fall or other blows to the area, you will want to have your shoulder thoroughly checked out by a medical professional. For less serious injuries rest and relaxation may be all the treatment you need, however some situations may call for a brace or other medical intervention.

Dislocated

You may have seen movies where the hero suffers a dislocated shoulder and bravely puts it back into place. Well in the real world that is probably not very accurate, especially the very first time this happens. Dislocation occurs when the ball is forced out of the socket, most of the time due to trauma while the arm is extended above the shoulder. The area may swell, bruise, look deformed and hurt very badly, you will likely be unable to move the joint. Unfortunately, once you have dislocated your shoulder for the first time, it is more likely to happen again. This is why some people simply pop them back into place on their own, because they have become accustomed to the issue.

Frozen Shoulder

Frozen shoulder is pretty much, what it sounds like, a shoulder that will not move or is frozen in place. There may be some small range of movement but nothing significant. This occurs because the tissue around the area has become inflamed and irritated. Scar tissue from a severe injury or surgery can also lead to shoulder joint pain, and frozen shoulder.

What You Can Do

There are many things that can cause shoulder joint pain, from simple over use to extreme injury and sometimes-underlying medical conditions can be to blame. The best thing you can do when experiencing this type of pain is see a physician.

Not moving your shoulder due to pain or arthritis can lead to further problems such as frozen shoulder. Take care of your joints if you want them to take care of you. Consider using natural supplements to assist in recovery. Prescription medications (drugs) work on symptoms such as pain, while natural supplements work toward healing and pain relief.

Knee Pain When Walking – An Overview – Symptoms, Treatment, and Prevention

The knee is an especially vulnerable joint. It takes on a lot of stress when you walk, run, jump or climb anything. Even if they have not incurred any major knee trauma, many people will still suffer from knee pain brought on by regular wear and tear over time.

A. ) How do you Determine the Cause of Knee Pain?

If you get severe knee pain while walking, chances are the pain would not have been caused by the walking itself. A number of observations will help your doctor determine the immediate cause of your knee pain. Some of these include:

1.) Your age

2.) Whether your knee has suffered an injury at some stage

3.) Exactly where the knee pain is (front or back of the knee, inside or outside section of the joint)

4.) Did the knee pain start suddenly or has it come on gradually over time?

5.) What are the activities that bring on the knee pain?

B. ) What are the Common Knee Pain Symptoms?

In addition to determining what caused the knee pain, you will also need to consider the exact symptoms you are suffering from in order to be able to get the right treatment. Some of the most common knee pain symptoms include:

1.) Locking (where you cannot straighten or bend your knee)

2.) Popping or snapping sensation in the knee

3.) Giving way (feeling as if your knee is giving way when you walk)

4.) Inability to put weight on the knee

5.) Grinding feeling

6.) Swelling and whether this appeared suddenly following injury or appeared more slowly

7.) Worsening knee pain when walking or bending the knee

C. ) What are the Possible Causes of Knee Pain when Walking?

The following are just some of the more common factors that cause severe knee pain when walking:

1.) Tendonitis – Tendonitis is an inflammation or irritation of the tendons. In addition to having a swelling in the front of the knees, if you suffer severe knee pain when walking and it feels worse while climbing stairs or when running, then you may have tendonitis.

2.) Meniscus injuries – Meniscus injuries are caused by a tear in the cartilage in your knee joint. This can cause severe pain in the knee and a feeling that you cannot straighten out the knee. There will also be some swelling.

3.) Bursitis – Inflammation of the cushioning fluid sacs in the knee causes bursitis. If you have bursitis your knees will be stiff and swollen and they will feel painful even when you are not walking.

4.) Knee arthritis- Knee arthritis involves stiffness, swelling and knee pain when walking.

D.) What Can be Done About Severe Knee Pain when Walking?

If you are suffering from severe knee pain when walking, it is important that you consult your doctor for an accurate diagnosis. Appropriate treatment will depend on the cause and severity of the pain and could involve surgery or anti-inflammatory medication.

A knee brace is one of the most effective ways to protect your knee from further injury or whilst recovering from surgery. The brace works to keep the joint stable and prevent movements which could cause further damage to the knee. Other options for self help include ice packs, rest and elevation and compression bandaging to prevent fluid build-up. Physical therapy is extremely beneficial as it strengthens the supporting muscles, which then help to stabilize your knee and reduce the severe knee pain when walking.

Rolling Ball Sculptures in "Fracture," the Anthony Hopkins Movie

Rolling Ball Sculptures, both desktop and 6ft high are featured in the 2007 Anthony Hopkins movie “Fracture.” These elaborate rolling ball machines serve as dramatic metaphors for the character of Ted Crawford (Anthony Hopkins) and the story, symbolic of the many complicated and cunning plot twists to come in this clever up-to-the-minute suspense thriller.

Anthony Hopkins plays Ted Crawford in the movie ‘Fracture’, a wealthy L.A. aeronautical engineer, a precise, meticulous man who builds these rolling ball sculptures for amusement. In the lounge of his smart designer house is one such rolling ball sculpture – known also as kinetic art (sculptures that have movement), approx 6ft high by 6ft wide with shiny metallic tracks and carved wooden wheels, where small glass balls skitter and roll in an elaborately choreographed dance – a beautiful piece of precision machinery and dramatic art.

The machines are also known as ‘Rubes’, originally depicted by the famous cartoonist and engineer Rube Goldberg, ‘complex devices that perform simple tasks in indirect, convoluted ways’. It is difficult for a writer to describe these sculptures – they are whimsical, not only functional but very visual with all the workings on display.

The writer of the ‘Fracture’ movie came upon the idea of using a rolling ball machine in the movie ‘Fracture’ whilst playing with his son who likes marble mazes. The marbles roll through a labyrinth of confusing tracks only to come out in unexpected places.

The movie writer appointed Mark Bischof, a Dutch artist, to advise and oversee the special effects team who constructed the rolling ball sculptures for ‘Fracture’. Bischof had been working on kinetic art for over 10 years and he designs the sculptures to exhibit the slow release of energy of a guided ball along metal tracks. He uses track switching mechanisms, loops, spirals, drop-trough and other devices to demonstrate various aspects of this energy – the sculptures are enthralling.

The writer Gers, said “It’s always best when you can find an external sign to show the inner person (talking of Ted Crawford, Anthony Hopkins) but when I wrote the paragraph, I never really imagined the complex machine they would have to build.”

Several configurations of Bischoff’s designs were built on set. Anderson, the special effects director and his team were honored and excited to step outside the normal realm of their duties of pyrotechnics, explosives and mechanical effects to build the 8-foot sculpture along with a same-size “stunt double” version. Together they designed the kinetic brass sculpture and its wooden base to compliment the dynamic architecture of Crawford’s unique house.

The large sculpture measures 8 feet high x 8 feet wide x 2 feet deep and uses two 12-volt electrical motors operated via remote control, weighing about 250 pounds. The manual desktop version is about 14 inches x 32 inches x 12 inches wide.

Healing Broken Bones With Herbs

It has now been three weeks since my daughter broke her collarbone, and if I hadn’t seen her healing with my own eyes I wouldn’t believe it. The medical profession says a collarbone typically takes 4 to 6 weeks to heal. My daughter’s took two. Many of you, like my wife, won’t be surprised by this, but having not come from an herbalist’s background, things like this still amaze me. My wife has been studying herbs and natural healing for quite a while, so as she saw this healing occur her reaction was simply “Well yeah, that’s the way it works.”

On a Monday morning my 4-year-old little girl fell off the couch and landed just right to break her collarbone. She immediately began screaming in pain, and not just the kind of screaming when a kid falls down and gets bumped. This was the type of screaming where you immediately know something is definitely wrong. All you parents know exactly what I’m talking about. She couldn’t be touched, she couldn’t be consoled, and she wouldn’t calm down.

Suspecting that something might be broken, we quickly went to the doctor’s office to get x-rays. The x-ray confirmed our suspicions and clearly showed her broken clavicle. While very nice and professional, the only thing the doctor suggested was a sling and gave her a prescription for Tylenol3. We thanked him very much, didn’t bother to fill the prescription, and went home. Now that we knew it was a broken bone, we knew exactly where to start working.

We immediately started giving her Comfrey tea with Willow to drink. Comfrey is a bone and tissue healer while Willow helps to relieve pain (Aspirin was actually derived from Willow). We put a Complete Tissue And Bone (formerly known as Bone Flesh and Cartilage or BF&C formula) fomentation on her collarbone and kept it there for the rest of the day. We also gave her homeopathic Arnica dissolved in water frequently. Arnica has been used since the 1500s for treating injuries such as sprains, breaks and bruises.

Our routine over the next several days included 5 to 6 cups of Comfrey tea with Willow in it, fomentations most of the day and at night, Complete Tissue And Bone powder added to our green drinks in the morning, Complete Tissue And Bone oil rubbed on her clavicle, and homeopathic Arnica dissolved in water 3 or 4 times during the day.

So what were the results?

On Tuesday, the day after the accident, her collarbone was very painful, and she needed help with everything including going to the bathroom. She couldn’t color, and she spent the day watching movies, which kept her still. Wednesday she had a lot less pain and was generally moving around a lot more. Thursday her cousins came over and she played with them for several hours. She wore a sling for a few hours that day to remind her not to move her arm too much. Friday she went to see a ballet, took the sling off because it was annoying her, and was active all day. By Sunday she was happy and playing, carrying her baby dolls, dressing up, and even running, though her collarbone hurt slightly while running.

Over the following week she kept getting better and better. We kept the routine of giving her Comfrey tea with Willow, rubbing oil on her clavicle during the day, and putting fomentations on at night, though we reduced the frequency. By the following Tuesday, now two weeks since the break, she was acting as if it had never happened. In fact she even went swimming and was later bragging that she was able to do all of her strokes: freestyle, breaststroke, backstroke, and even butterfly. Later in the week she was even crawling.

It has now been three weeks and we still rub Complete Tissue And Bone oil on her collarbone and she has at least one cup of Comfrey tea each day. We also still add Complete Tissue And Bone powder to our green drinks in the morning. She is acting like our active 4-year-old little girl again and, if I hadn’t seen it with my own eyes, I would never even guess that she ever broke her collarbone.

Herbs really are nature’s blessing for health.

Failure to Thrive in Children With Cerebral Palsy

As anyone who has observed a baby in the first few years of life has seen, young children tend to grow more in the first few years than at any other time in life. Even perfectly healthy children do not grow and gain weight at the exact same rate, but in pediatric medicine, there are degrees of acceptability to that growth. When a child either fails to gain weight or gains weight at a rate significantly below the norm, this is cause for concern and medically referred to as “failure to thrive.” This condition can be indicative of many things, but can be one of the early warning sign of cerebral palsy (CP).

Failure to thrive can be categorized as either organic (resulting from medical issues such as a disease or disability that prevents the child from taking in or using calories for appropriate growth and weight gain) or non-organic (resulting from abuse, neglect or other environmental factors). Here we’ll explore organic failure to thrive as it pertains to the development of cerebral palsy.

There are a number of organic causes of failure to thrive including:

1) Damage to the brain or complications of the central nervous system

2) Cerebral palsy

3) Genetic issues

4) Chromosomal issues

5) Pulmonary or cardiopulmonary issues

6) Blood disorders such as anemia

7) Gastrointestinal problems

8) Chronic infections

Cerebral Palsy can affect the part of a child’s brain that controls their growth and development. It can prevent them from absorbing calories and nutrients in a way that is beneficial to their growth. They may also have motor or muscular issues that prevents them from swallowing normally or keeps them from getting the level of exercise required for normal growth.

There are many symptoms to failure to thrive. The earlier this condition is caught, the sooner corrective and therapeutic measures can be taken to ensure the child is receiving and processing the nutrition it needs.

Some of the symptoms of failure to thrive, other than lack of appropriate weight gain, include: irritability, excessive sleepiness and fatigue, avoidance of eye contact, lack of vocal sounds and delayed motor development. There are numerous standard growth charts and norms for parents and physicians to compare a child’s progress to. Statistically, most babies double their birth weight by 4 months and triple it by age one. If your child fails to achieve this goal or fails other standard charts, which should include their own established growth curve, it should be brought to the attention of their doctor.

If your child is diagnosed with failure to thrive, the next step is to determine the underlying medical cause. One of the things that will help your child’s doctor (or dietician, if suggested) assess your child’s nutritional needs is by your keeping own accurate records of the child’s height, weight and growth patterns as well as their dietary history. Sometimes a very minor change in your child’s food intake will improve their growth rate.

The doctor may preform tests specifically designed to indicate developmental delays (such as the Denver Developmental Screening Test) or other underlying causes for failure to thrive (such as urinalysis, tests for blood counts and electrolyte imbalance, checking for other blood conditions such as sickle cell disease (SCD), tests for kidney and bone disease).

Treatments for children suffering from failure to thrive depend largely on the cause. The medical reason for the delay in growth will determine the path of treatment, which could include special diets, corrective surgery, physical therapy, occupational therapy or other medical mediation.

The principal goal of failure to drive and cerebral palsy treatment is to ensure the child receives and process caloric and nutritional intake sufficient to support a healthy growth rate. Any adjustments to your child’s diet should be done in consultation with your child’s doctor.

In a New Medical Miracle the Paralyzed Will Walk Again

When you receive the Seal you will understand the importance of recovery from disease and trauma. Researchers are now finding a way to help people walk again after they have had a spinal-cord injury.

When the spinal cord is hurt the signals sent by the brain to control walking are blocked. Until now medical science has believed that the only way to repair this damage is to restore the same nerves that were originally connected.

Now a study shows that the nerves can follow new routes when the old ones are cut off. This gives the promise that people who have hurt their spinal cord–and have been told they will never walk again–will be able to walk.

When the nerves inside the spinal canal are hurt it blocks the signals from the brain that command the body to act. That usually happens when the vertebral column is hurt.

The brain will be able to command the body as far down as the injury but no farther below it. This is why many people with a spinal-cord injury can not walk–their legs are beneath their spine no matter where they were injured.

And of course there is hope also for people with spinal-cord injuries that happened higher up the spine. They experience paralysis in more of their body. Now ways can be developed that they can move their arms and hands as well as their legs.

Dr Michael Sofroniew, a professor at UCLA, was the chief author of the study, which was published in the January issue of the journal Nature Medicine. He describes the findings with this metaphor:

The nerves between the brain cells and the lowest end of the spinal cord are like freeways you drive on. When there is a traffic accident all the traffic gets backed up. It seems to stop.

But if you really need to get where you are going on time, you get off the freeway at the closest exit and take a side street. Normally that side street would not be convenient but when there is an accident it is the only way through.

The detour is slower and not as “direct” but it still allows the driver to get to the destination. This can happen with your spinal-cord nerves also. The pathway can be redirected through undamaged nerves, keeping something similar to the original connection.

It would be like driving through side-streets all the way to your distant destination. It is not going to be the same quick, efficient experience of driving freely on the interstate. But it is better than not getting where you are going at all.

Signals from the brain are also able to take detours and “side-street” nerves until they ultimately reach their destination. That means ultimately those people who can not walk today will be able to walk again.

“When I was a medical student, my professors taught that the brain and spinal cord were hard-wired at birth and could not adapt to damage. Severe injury to the spinal cord meant permanent paralysis,” said Sofroniew.

“This pessimistic view has changed over my lifetime, and our findings add to a growing body of research showing that the nervous system can reorganize after injury,” he added.

When you are sealed you will understand the importance of recovery. You will most likely have recovered from something traumatic or perhaps a bad habit you once could not break but now have been able to.

God will give you the ability to break bad habits and to recover from all kinds of accidental injuries too. Now researchers are giving God a little help in promising you recovery that was never before believed possible. It is possible when you receive the Seal.

Learn How To Identify Hernias

A hernia can be a medical condition which will occur when bowels within the body have pressed through a weak region within the stomach and out of the body hole that they’re ordinarily held inside of. You can find many different types of hernias that might have an effect on both men and women.

The differing types are diagnosed based upon what area of the body these are affecting. The abdominal hernia is the most common and it| happens in the lower or middle region of the abdomen. The inguinal hernia occurs inside the groin along with the ventral kind will happen over the naval region. The hiatal is also ordinary and happens close to the thorax.

For many people, they are triggered when they have lifted something too heavy or have torn through the abdominal wall. For other people it can be brought on by a surgical operation or even for some unknown reasons. What we do understand is that a lot of people are ignorant of the problem until most of your intestines have begun to drop out.

Once they do spill out they begin to create a type of bulge in the area that it is spilling into. This might be small initially and hardly noticeable. Yet, over time it may become quite large and though it may not be distressing it’ll be very uncomfortable.

These can be pushed back in and held in there using a special belt. Still, if you have been diagnosed it’s best to speak with a medical professional about having surgery to repair the damaged abdominal wall. That way the issue doesn’t get any worse. That will present you with lots of time for a decent hernia recovery and more time to fret about something else.