Getting Relief From Hemorrhoids

It's true that many people are embarrassed about hemorrhoids, but in truth they should not be because it's something that most men and women of differenting ages. Hemorrhoids also vary in degrees. Some are more painful than other cases due to various complications. There are even cases where hemorrhoids can cause bleeding.

Of course treatment can come in various forms as well. However, treatment will not be immediate and will take a while before the hemorrhoids are finally deal with. For the meantime, you have to find immediate relief from the itchiness and pain that hemorrhoids may cause. Focusing on the more common methods of getting immediate relief, this will guide will look at the methods of staying comfortable while your treatment is still taking effect.

First of all, you should start slow with your treatment. If your condition can be treated by using some plain over-the-counter product you should make do with this rather than immediately resorting to drastic measures such as heavy medicine or surgery. For one thing, you do not need to spend for more than you should, especially if all you need is a cheaper method. Try medical pads to relieve yourself of the pain, preferably the ones with witch hazel in them because they are more effective. If they do not work, then you can start asking your doctor for a prescription to something stronger in relieving your pain.

You might also want to keep with you an "O" pillow. These are available in your local drugstore. This will allow you to sit anywhere without having to risk putting pressure on your rectum, which is not very good for hemorrhoids.

Also, watch your diet for the duration of the hemorrhoids. Make sure you eat lots of fiber and avoid types of food that do not have fiber at all like meat, especially the kind that are difficult to digest and expel. Otherwise, you will be subjecting yourself to so much painful bowel movements.

Lastly, never forget to keep yourself hydrated. Water is what keeps stool from being too hard to expel comfortably. Beside, having adequate water in your body has been proven to prevent diseases over all, so it can only be good for you.

What is Duodenal Ulcer and How to Diagnose?

The condition referred to as Duodenal Ulcer is one that typically announces itself as a sharp, severe pain in the upper part of the abdomen (the Epigastrium), appearing when a person is hungry and the stomach is empty.

Essentially, duodenal ulcers are caused by too much acid in the stomach; when the acid proves too strong for the protective inner lining of the duodenum (the part where the stomach joins the small intestine), it starts, in effect, burning a hole in the stomach wall. It is this crater, or ulcer, which results in pain, particularly when there is no food inside the stomach to use up the acid that is being produced.

Patients who develop duodenal ulcers usually tend to get relief from their pain by taking some milk, bland food or antacid tablets (like milk of magnesia), which can neutralize the excess acid. The danger of duodenal ulcers is that they erode the stomach wall – either perforating (so that the contents of the stomach leak out into the abdominal cavity) or eroding into a blood vessel, resulting in bleeding. Small amounts of bleeding manifest as Malaena (black discoloration of the stools) while a massive bleed can cause the patient to vomit blood or even die of hemorrhage.

To confirm the presence of a duodenal ulcer, doctors employ two main types of tests. Until a decade or two ago, the only method of diagnosing an, ulcer was by doing a Barium Meal – taking a series of X-rays after getting the patient to swallow a white liquid, Barium Sulphate. This substance clearly outlined the inside of the stomach, showing up the ulcer as a crater in the stomach wall.

Today, we have an instrument called the Gastroscope – a flexible, fibrooptic telescope which can be passed into the stomach through the mouth, and allows one to see clearly inside the stomach itself! The procedure is not painful, and does not require a general anesthetic- all the patient does is suck an anesthetic lozenge a few minutes beforehand to anesthetize the back of the throat before the gastroscope is passed in. Using the gastroscope, doctors can detect not only ulcers, but also growths like cancers inside the stomach. The instrument has made the diagnosis of stomach ulcers so much more accurate.

The Anatomy and Progression of Allergies

In this article I am going to take you the reader on a step by step "tour", of how I believe that most Allergies develop. We will start at childhood and work forward. I will use a compilation of all the previously agreed upon and accepted data in the fields of Naturopathy and Clinical Nutrition.

An allergy if it is to "airborne allergens" like pollens, molds dust etc, to foods or to chemical or metallic substances all have the same beginnings. An Allergic person does not have a weak immune system. In fact their immune system is hyperactive. It is in a constant alarm state of awareness or readiness, constantly ready to attack a foreign invader at the slightest provocation. The Allergic person's immune system is truly hyperactive, so much so that it attacks things without careful enough examination of whether or not it is correct to do so.

The Allergy begins in the intestinal tract with the disruption of normal intestinal flora. Lactobacillus Acidophilus which inhabits the 20-30 foot long small intestine and Bifido Bacterium which inhabits the 6-8 foot long colon are the most abundant protective bacteria in the digestive tract. They help produce vitamins, help us digest and absorb nutrients from our foods and also protect us from harmful bacteria, parasites and yeast which find their way into our digestive tract. When medication such antibiotics, steroids, antacids, and immune suppressing drugs are taking these friendly protective organisms die-off. This condition is called "Dysbiosis". "Dysbiosis" is a state of imbalance where the harmful micro-organisms achieve an abnormal dominance over the good organisms. This allows a build up of toxins produced by the organizations and also disruptions normal digestion. Due to this, stomach acid and enzymes produced by the pancreas that digest foods (particularly proteins) lessen. This leads to incomplete digestion of proteins. This is where the allergy really begins.

Leaky Gut Syndrome

The condition of Leaky Gut syndrome is usually known as "Intestinal Permeability". In this condition, the harmful microorganism that make up "Dysbiosis", harmful chemicals, drugs or toxic metals, and continued intestinal Allergic reactions damage the lining of the intestines. The Mucin lining is damaged. This is a protective barrier of proteins that are the first line of defense. Next microscopic damage occurs to the gut lining. This is not visible by a scope of any kind. This allows proteins, improperly digested foods chemicals and allergens that we breathe in to "fall through the cracks" and enter our blood stream. This condition underlies many auto immune diseases. It is the next stage of the chronic allergy state.

When proteins and other foods are not digested correctly and to the degree that the body wants them digested the body has difficulty recognizing them as food and handling them.
It could be really said that when protein and foods are not digested correctly the body views them as foreign invaders and the immune system attacks them. This is the most basic form and explanation of a food allergy is.

Also the "Parotid" gland has a functional role in preventing this abnormality. The Parotid gland is located in the area benefit onues tongue. It is the largest salivary gland. It job other then the mere production of saliva is to "tag" or identify for the immune system foreign bodies that should be attacked as an invading germ or toxin versus a substance which should be welcomed as a nutrient. The Parotid gland may become under active and this identification process may slacken.

During this attack histamine is produced in the body. It is the liver's job to reduce the histamine by detoxifying it. The Adrenal glands also produce anti-inflammatory hormones which further reduce the Allergic reactions. It becomes the job of the Liver and Adrenal glands to reduce the histamine produced by "mast cells" which are produced as part of the immune systems response to its attack. The Liver and Adrenals glands must also reduce the general inflammatory response that occurs due to immune systems attack.

If the liver and adrenal glands are not fully functioning or are themselves deficient in nutrients, then the hystamine reaction and the inflammatory reaction can not be reduced correctly. This prolongs the allergic reaction and may intensify it.

Technically, allergic reactions of this kind are occurring constantly. There difference between the allergic person and the non allergic could be argued to be the ability of the person Adrenal and Liver function to "put out the fire" of the outbreak.

The Hyper immune Response

The Thymus gland is often referred to as the "Master Immune" gland. The Thymus and Adrenal glands have an antagonistic action on each other. When the Adrenal glands become under active due to long periods of exhausting stress the Thymus gland will tend to be overactive. It is the over activity of the thymus gland without the balancing effect of the Adrenal glands that produces the chronic state of an overactive Thymus gland.

The Allergic person does not have a weak immune system as described earlier. The over activity of their immune system is as a direct result of the hyperactive state of their Thymus gland … It is the constant alarm state of the Thymus that ultimate powers much of the continuity of the Allergic state of being. The Thymus gland also stimulates and increases the activity of other parts of the immune system which are all part of the attack.

The Adrenal glands when properly functioning producing hormones of the Cortisol, Cortisone, Prednisone family which suppress and balance the excessive activity of the Thymus gland. This is in fact the theory behind treating auto immune conditions and conditions of excessive immune function like Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus, Leukemia and other such illness with Prednisone. This is following the same basic law as described early of the Adrenals (which in turn produce prednisone) balancing the Thymus gland and its counterparts in the immune system.

So to help the Allergic person overcome their Allergies the following needs to occur.
Phase 0-2, the intestinal imbalance we call Dysbiosis, Leaky Gut syndrome, needs to be corrected, and normal flora and digestion restored. Phase 3-4 would include restoring Parotid, Adrenal and Liver function and balancing the axis between the Adrenals and Thymus gland. This can be expected to take quite a few months to do maybe longer. But it is the only system that addresses each stage of the Anatomy of the Allergy and corrects all the underlying causes!

What Are Gallbladder Polyps?

The gallbladder is an organ that does not have many functions and it is not even important for survival, but it can cause problems. Problems occur when either gallstones or gallbladder polyps form and become too large. This may sound scary, but having polyps does not necessarily mean that any adverse effects will be experienced or that any other conditions will develop. Of course, any polyps need to be examined because there is also a slim chance that they are cancerous.

Having gallbladder polyps is not an uncommon thing and fact is that around 5% of organs have these formations. A polyp is a growth or a lesion that originates from the walls of the gallbladder and they are nothing other than mucous membranes which stay and build up in the organ. Usually the body takes care of these tissues, but nonetheless the gallbladder is for their formation and especially in people who already have gallstones. There are five main types of gallbladder polyps that form and each of these growths can be identified by having an ultrasound specialist take a look.

Almost all of the people who have gallbladder polyps do not experience any kind of symptoms or pain. Since they are usually asymptomatic there is no urgent need to act on them. However, if polyps grow to a size of half an inch or more, then effects may be experienced. Those effects, though, are from gallstones and not the polyps themselves. Whenever polyps in the gallbladder are discovered, it is incidentally and not intentionally.

Having these growths is usually not a reason to worry, but large sized polyps may also be a sign of cancer and therefore it is necessary to have them examined by a specialist. Especially patients that also have problems with the liver and biliary ducts need to worry that the gallbladder polyps may be malignant. If polyps become large and there is a possibility of cancer, even if benign, then there is only one real solution. That would be to just simply remove the entire gallbladder. This is not a problem and a human can function normal and fine without this organ.

Fibroid – The Basic Facts

Fibroid also known as leiomyoma or myoma, is a non cancerous growth made up of smooth muscles and fibrous tissues within or attached to the wall of the uterus (womb). In recent times, Fibroid has assumed a very popular status due to the problems of infertility so often, but in most cases erroneously, attributed to it.

Fibroid hard affects women less than 20 years and post menopausal women. Fibroid is prevalent in 30-40% of women over 30 years and occurs 2-3 times in black women than in white women. Fibroid may be present in 15-20% of women in their reproductive years.

Fibroid is the commonest tumor encountered in the female. Fibroids growth is slow but becomes obvious in the forth decade of life. The size of Fibroid can vary from as small as a peanut to as large as the size of a football.

Fibroid is more common in women who have never been pregnant or those who have had only one child, because the popular saying "Bad Girls Get Pregnant, Good Girls Get Fibroid" Pregnancy and oral contraption lower the risk of developing new fibroid and fibroids stop growing after menopause.

Fibroids often develop within the walls of the uterus and can be found at any part of the uterus. As it increases in size, about 70% remain within the wall, and 10% grow into the uterine cavity. The remaining 20% ​​grow outwards. It is called Punctuated Fibroid when it hangs from a stalk and become like a pendulum on the outside of the uterus

Although the cause of fibroid is obscure, its growth seems to depend on the hormone estrogen which is a female reproductive hormone. As a result, Fibroid continues to grow as long as the woman menstruates. Note that the growth is slow. It is very possible for only one Fibroid to develop on the uterus; they are usually more than one at the same time. In fact, they are usually multiple.

Tips and Treatments For Sebaceous Cysts Causing Hair Loss

The issue of sebaceous cysts causing hair loss has not been entirely understood by many people. A sebaceous cyst is a closed sac below the surface of the skin with a lining that is similar to the uppermost part of a hair follicle and fills with a fatty white of thick fluid material known as sebum. Sebum is produced by the sebaceous glands. They are more common in hairier areas, where in cases of long duration, they could result in hair loss on the skin surface immediately above the cyst.

Sebaceous glands occur most commonly in the scalp but may also occur in ears, back, face, and elsewhere in the body except the palms of the hands and the soles of the fit. In cases of long duration, they could result in hair loss on the skin surface immediately above the cyst. They are round in shape, smooth to touch, and greatly vary in size. The sebaceous cysts consist of:

· Fibrous tissues and fluids.

· A fatty substance.

· A viscous fluid.

The cyst can be removed entirely with careful surgery. When the cyst is removed carefully, it is likely not to re-occur again.

The main cause of sebaceous glands is the blockage of the swollen hair follicles and excessive testosterone production. It may also be hereditary.

Treatment

Though sebaceous cysts generally do not require any medical treatment, if they continue to grow, they may become painful and infected. In this case, a surgical procedure should be performed. The common surgical procedure is to numb the cyst with an anesthetic and then using a scalpel to open the lesion with either a single cut down to the middle of the swelling. A smaller cyst may be laced instead of a surgical procedure being performed on it. The person performing the surgery will usually squeeze out the semi solid material surrounding the cyst and then use an instrument to hold the incision wide open while using the fingers to remove the cyst intact. An antibiotic is required in order to halt bacterial infection.

An equally easy technique of treating cysts is to place a heating pad directly on the cyst for about 15-20 minutes, twice daily, for about ten days. The heating pad must be sterilized to halt any infection of the treated area. This method mainly works by bringing the wax-like material inside of the cyst to a temperature to which it can melt and hence can be reabsorbed by the body as a small amount of oily fluid. This method is preferred by many because surgical procedures are thought to be inherently risky by many people.

As can be seen from the above procedures, both the non-surgical surgical procedures are easy to adopt. The non-surgical procedure is preferred if you don’t have the money for a normal surgery. It however exposes you to the risk of getting an infection especially if hygiene conditions are not observed. The surgical procedure is preferred by people who have some resources to spare. It can be done at any hospital. Given some people’s phobia for surgery procedures, some are bound to avoid it. However, regardless of the method you choose, you should treat the sebaceous condition as fast as possible because failure to treat it could result in considerable loss of your hair.

Yeast Infection of Throat – Causes and Symptoms

Yes, you can get a yeast infection of the throat through through oral sex. More often than not, this is how male yeast infections will occur. It can be passed to your throat from your partner and sometimes even back again. That's why you should strive to stop all sexual relationships until a yeast infection clears up.

It's important to understand that it is better to refrain from sexual activity so that a throat yeast infection is not passed along to you or your partner. This could potentially end up having a ping-pong effect, where the yeast infection passes back and forth between partners. However, although they can be transmitted through oral sex, yeast infections are not considered a sexually transmitted disease.

Thrush is a relatively symptom of a yeast infection of throat. This takes the form of a burning or itches in the throat and mouth, and a white, pasty film coating. But, contracting a yeast infection in your threat is actually something rare. For something like that to happen, you really already have to have a compromised immune system.

Weakened Immune System

A weakened immune system due to any number of reasons, like use of steroids, can lead to your contracting yeast infections. Weakened immune systems can also occur as a result of other health problems, such as lack of sleep, and stress.

Recurring yeast infections, which are most often the result of a weakened immune system, are symptoms of something else. Your body could be trying to tell you in no uncertain terms there's something wrong.

At such times, it's always best to listen to your body and not to just shrug it off as another yeast infection. You may have a far more serious condition upon you, a condition which will weak your immune system and which will pave the way for yeast bacteria to grow and thrive.

One such example is if you have HIV / AIDS. Many people who suffer from this problem will be subjected to recurrent attacks of thrush (yeast infections of the throat and mouth), and candidiasis (vaginal yeast infections).

If this is the case, consult your doctor to discover what exactly you can do about curing your yeast infections. That's why if you do get recurring yeast infections, you should consult your doctor to make sure that it is not caused by something far more serious.

From Sexually Transmitted Infections

Although not considered a sexually transmitted infection in and of itself, yeast infections can be transferred to you because of the havoc that some sexually transmitted diseases will put you through.

Dog Hepatitis – Owner's Guide to Hepatitis in Dogs

Hepatitis in dogs is a highly contagious viral disease. It primarily affects the liver. However, it can also affect various other organs.

Transmission

As you just learned, this disease is caused by a virus. This virus is known as canine adenovirus type 1, or CAV-1 for short. Most dogs get infected when they come into direct contact with an infected dog. Infected body fluids can also be a method of transmission. The virus can also be passed by parasites such as fleas, mosquitoes, and ticks.

Symptoms

Dog hepatitis can be either severe or acute. Dogs with the acute form will experience vomiting, fever, and diarrhea. The disease can also cause swollen lymph nodes, pale gums, and yellowish eyes. If your dog's liver also swells up, he may stop eating.

Dogs with the acute form of this disease usually recover after a week or so. On the other hand, the severe form is usually fatal. Common symptoms include bloody vomit and diarrhea, bloody nose, and bloody gums. Since some damage is done to the liver, it can also result in a coma or seizures.

Treatment

Mild cases of hepatitis in dogs usually requires that your dog be hospitalized. Treatment involves giving intravenous fluids to combat dehydration that can be taken on by the diarrhea or vomiting. Additional supportive care may also be necessary.

Prognosis

There is no specific treatment for hepatitis in dogs. As mentioned, the severe form of this disease is often fatal, usually within a week. Sometimes, an infected dog can die within mere hours of showing symptoms. Dogs may be able to recover from the acute form.

Prevention

The vaccine to guard against dog hepatitis is usually given to puppies. However, it can also be given to adult dogs that have yet to be vaccinated. The vaccine can contain either adenovirus type 1 or 2. Although type 1 is liable for this disease, a vaccine containing type 2 will also help prevent it.

Cirrhosis – When the Liver Finally Loses the Battle

People other than health-care professionals who are directly involved with trying to save the lives of alcoholics have no concept of the agony, destruction, degradation, and just plain waste caused by this disease. The following article is definitely not for the 'fault of heart, but if you want a feel for what really happens when an alcoholic finally dies from his or her disease, then continue reading.

Cirrhosis is a condition where the liver is reduced to a non-functioning shriveled knot after years of drinking.

First, I need to make a disclaimer. Although I worked with doctors in academic settings for many years, I am not a trained physician, and I have absolutely no clinical experience (ie, experience treating patients). Thereafter, the following observations, other than the definitions and material taken from references as general as Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, medical dictionaries, The Merck Manual of Medical Information, and the Physician's Desk Reference, are taken from experience with health professionals who do. However, to be fair, I need to add that I took my bachelor's degree in biology, served in the training department of three drug companies, and worked as a clinical research associate setting up and monitoring drug studies. Academic medicine has been a major part of my life for over 40 years.

A Healthy liver is capable of metabolizing about an ounce of alcohol per hour. Anytime a person drinks at exactly that rate he or she is matching the rate at which the liver can handle alcohol, so they are about "breaking even." Humphrey Bogart figured this out early in his career. He was famous for being able to drink all night without appearing drunk. What he did was pace his drinking so that he was drinking at the same rate that his liver broke down the alcohol.

The liver, as the principle detoxifying organ in the body, responds to alcohol the way it does to any other poison. It tries to protect the body by minimizing the amount of alcohol that enters the blood stream where it can travel to other organs and cause damage. The individual, in the meantime, is drinking for some reason. Maybe that reason is to relax, or to go to sleep, to loosen anxiety in social situations, or just to "get high." In a real sense a battle is going on here between the individual and his or her liver. In other words, while the person is trying to achieve some effect from the alcohol on his or her body and / or brain, the person's liver is trying to prevent the alcohol from getting to the body and / or brain!

The liver's first strategy in this strange battle is to just metabolize the alcohol by using the enzyme alcohol dehydrogenase. We humans make this enzyme naturally because alcohol does occur in foods due to fermentation of any vegetable matter. However, the amount of alcohol occurring naturally is infinitesimal compared to the amounts present in, say one beer. If the rate of consumption stays low, then this ploy by the liver works. This is what made Bogart's system work. The person's liver "cleaves" the alcohol molecule with the same enzyme over and over again until the alcohol molecule is converted to simple vinegar and water, which is then urinated out of the body. It is also excreted in small amounts through the sweat glands, which is why the families and friends of alcoholics all describe that characteristic sweet smell of alcohol that lingers around alcoholics.

However, if the individual "ups the ante" on the liver by tossing down alcoholic drinks faster in order to achieve the desired effect, then the liver has to resort to more drastic measures. What the liver does is allow as little alcohol as possible into the bloodstream by temporarily storing the alcohol, untouched within itself, in little storage units called vacuoles. The liver's strategy is like this; it creates a vacuole, a tiny opening within its own tissue to store the alcohol … sort of like a Baggie. This is actually quite clever. After the person stops drinking, the liver can metabolize the poison at its leisure. This is what is happening during a hangover. So the strategy here is to just hold the alcohol temporarily intact within the liver. It is basically a delaying tactic.

Unfortunately, every such episode results in a tiny hairline scar when the liver tissue seals up the little internal "Baggie." The scar is in effect a zipper. That zipper is a fine line of scar tissue, which is lighter in color than normal liver tissue, and less supple (ie, it is hard like any other scar tissue). After decades of creating these little baggies, more and more of the liver looks like scar tissue. At autopsy, livers of alcoholics are shrunken pale masses of hard tissue. This scarred liver tissue was, in the end, completely incapacitated of performing the liver's vital functions.

We are now entering an area that is about as complicated as any medical subject, because the liver is on a minute-to-minute basis performing the body's chemical operations on a level commiserate with that of the brain performing its mental and regulatory operation. But for the sake of clarity, the focus here needs to stay on the issue of blood flow to and from the liver.

Cirrhosis … The Final Days.

A healthy liver is like a healthy city. In a healthy city, traffic moves into and out of the city. It flows smoothly and quickly. Imagine this liver-city with two major freeways entering from above and below. The one from the intestines with its blood loaded with nutrients brings in all the raw materials the liver uses in its various manufacturing plant to create just about everything the rest of the body needs to survive: the blood itself, complex proteins to build and repair cells , and, most important to this story, what doctors term "clotting factors." Cloting factors are a complicated range of cells and organic chemicals that basically plug up any holes that appear in the body.

The big freeway coming from the north, the hepatic artery, delivers a steady stream from the heart and lungs. Here is the good clean oxygen-laden blood to stoke the furnaces of the plants doing the manufacturing through the liver. This blood is under high pressure, having just left the muscular chamber of the left ventricle of the heart, and has been cleared of waste gases like carbon dioxide and metabolic wastes that accumulated during the last pass the blood taken through the body.

In a cirrhotic liver, both major freeways are regularly backed up with traffic, because the fatty tissue and scarring has blocked vessels through the liver … not only the major highways themselves, but even the thousands of smaller highways and short cuts the liver has been using for years trying to keep itself working.

So how does this all result in the symptoms of cirrhosis? Let's just focus here on those two freeways. Blood carrying only partially digested nutrients from the intestines is contained into the general circulation without the benefit of the liver's detoxification system. This material is called bilirubin. It is in some respects like liquid fecal material. Bilirubin itself is a red pigment that is left over after red blood cells are destroyed.

This material being pumped through the bloodstream does not make your body feel very good. For example, when it is pumped through the brain, the patient becomes very tired and very grumpy. VERY grumpy. Also, bilirubin is what makes the skin appear bright yellow. This is jaundice. I saw a patient once who was as bright a yellow as a school bus during a training session in internal medicine my company sponsored at Hahnaman General Hospital in Philadelphia.

Moving now to the other freeway, the closest vessels available for the backup of the hepatic artery are those lining the esophagus. When all of that blood that should be going into the liver backs up into the small vessels lining the esophagus the pressure gets so great that they start to rupture. This causes what the medical professions terms esophageal varices. This is when the medical profession is faced with a losing battle, and some really tough decisions.

Remember those clotting factors normally made by the liver? They are needed now more than ever. The first rupture of a good-sized vessel relieves the high blood pressure and creates another problem … a sudden DROP in blood pressure. Right away doctors start looking to find the largest holes and pumping in units of blood from the hospital blood bank. In the back of their minds they know that every unit of this precious blood is going to be flushed quickly out through some holes somewhere. The most common place is through the bowel. Most people do not realize how much blood there is in a human being. This can end up all over everything!

At some point the physician is faced with alcoholism's ultimate bad choice; either keep keeping this person alive using other peoples' donated blood, or stop the whole process and allow the patient to bleed out and die. Almost every hospital runs with a shortage of blood, but teaching hospitals, cancer centers, and most government-operated hospitals are just ALWAY in a panic for more blood. The family is right down the hall, and asking questions almost constantly. There are no good choices.

As I stated at the outside of this writing, being associated in any way with death due to alcoholism is not for the fault of heart.

Alcoholism is still rampant all over the world. The tragedy is that, while there is no cure at the moment, there are ways that the disease can be managed. The highest success rate for five-year sobriety remains the AA program, based on the 12 steps. As family members of alcoholics, we also have a support groups based on the same 12-steps program called Al-Anon and ACOA (Adult Children of Alcoholics). Whatever you have the disease of alcoholism yourself, or are close to someone who does, there is still hope as long as there is breath. Call one of these programs immediately. You can find AA in the very beginning of any telephone book, and you can reach Al-Anon at 1-888-4AL-ANON or on their excellent web site at http://www.al-anon.alateen.org .

Cirrhosis can be lethal, especially when it has been allowed to progress without treatment. If you live with a family member who drinks routinely and heavily, and if this person begins to exhibit some of the symptoms mentioned earlier, it is important that you get that person to medical attention. As an Al-Anon, we go to great lengths to avoid being an enabler to an alcoholic, but you need to understand that, once alcoholism reaches this point in its progress, it is as life threatening as a loaded gun in the hand of a suicidal individual.

Call 911!

Lastly, in Al-Anon one of our "Do's and Don'ts" is to "… learn the facts about alcoholism." You can help others do just that by passing this article to friends and family who might need the information, to 12-step program friends, to treatment centers, health-care professionals, or anyone who may help.

Salivary Stones – Nonoperative Removal of Sialoliths and Sialodochoplasy of Salivary Duct Strictures

Objective- To describe the nonsurgical removal of sialoliths and treatment of salivary duct strictures. Design- Case series. Setting- Two 200-bed general community hospitals. Patients- Twelve consecutive patients from April 1985 to November 1994 – 8 with calculi, 3 with salivary duct strictures, and 1 with calculi and strictures. Results- Successful nonoperative removal of calculi in 7 of 9 patients. All four sialodochoplasties were successful. All 10 patients with successful procedures had no recurrent symptoms. Seven patients have been symptom-free for 10 months to ten years. Communication with 3 patients has been impossible recently, although these patients were symptom-free for at least 3 years. To date we have successfully treated twenty-five of twenty-eight patients for salivary duct calculi removal and dilatation of strictures. Conclusions- These methods of nonsurgical sialolith removal and sialodochoplasty were highly successful and should be used as the initial therapies for patients with these conditions.

SIALOLITHIASIS and salivary duct strictures are common pathological conditions of the salivary glands and their ducts. They produce similar symptoms of swelling, pain, and infection as a result of duct obstruction. Swelling and pain usually occurs during meals, when salivary secret is stimulated.Until recently, surgery has been the standard therapy for these conditions. This approach is invasive with important unavoidable risks and complications. Potential risk of damage to the facial nerve is high during parotid gland surgery.Recently, extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy has been introduced as an alternative treatment of sialolithiasis. Miniature lithotriptors have been developed and show some promise. However, these units are not generally available and their success rates have been variable.The mechanical removal of sialoliths and sialodochoplasty for duct stricture have been our initial approach for these diseases. These minimally invasive procedures are highly effective and avoid the known complications of surgery and anesthesia. Combining these methods with extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy promises to further increase success rates.

Results:

From April 1985 to November 1994, the mechanical removal of sialoliths was successful in 7 patients with sialolithiasis: 5 with submandibular duct calculi (See Figure 1 below) and 2 with parotid duct calculi (See Figure 2 below). Four patients underwent successful sialodochoplasties, 2 for parotid ducts and 2 for submandibular ducts. One patient had sialoliths and a stricture, so the total number of successful procedures was 11.

In 1 patient, the calculus was located close to the papilla, making retrieval especially difficult because of impaction. A grinding forceps was successfully used and a wide papillotomy was unnecessary.

In 2 patients, calculus retrieval failed: 1 each of the Stensen and Wharton ducts. These were technical failures caused by large impacted calculi and by strictures in the distal segment of the ducts, which made mechanical manipulation impossible. There were no sialodochoplasty failures.

The long-term outcomes following the procedures were excellent. No patient returned with recurrent symptoms. Seven patients remained symptom-free after clinical follow-up from 10 months to 10 years, and 3 patients were symptom-free for 3 to 5 years and then were unavailable for follow-up.

Materials and Methods:

Before the examination, the details of the procedure and its benefits and complications were explained to the patient. Informed consent was obtained for the sialography and for the mechanical removal of the calculi, sialodocholoplasty, or both.

As an initial diagnostic examination, sialography was performed to confirm the location of the strictures and calculi. The papillae were locally anesthetized by direct injection of 1% lidocaine hydrochloride. The papillotomy was accomplished by an incision toward the duct. No sedation or general anesthesia was given.

For the removal of the calculi, a 3.5F 4-wire Dormia basket (Porges, Paliseau Cedex, Salat, France), 3F Segura basket (Microvasive Co [Boston Scientific Corp.], Watertown Mass), and 3F Coaxial Sheath Grasping Forceps Cook Urological Co, Spencer, Ind) were used. For the sialodochoplasty, 3.8F 3-mm diameter Balloon catheters (Meditech, Watertown, Mass) were used.

After the papillotomy was accomplished, the papilla and adjunct salivary ducts were dilated by 3F and 4F dilators or stiff catheters of the same size. A 0.45-mm guide wire was introduced routinely to guide the balloon catheter. If there was a stricture, balloon dilatation was performed several times until full dilatation was achieved.

For the calculi, a basket was placed beyond or at the calculi site and the basket was manipulated to achieve extraction. When several calculi are present, several attempts may be required.

Comment:

The symptoms of sialoliths and salivary duct stricture are similar: intermittent swelling, tenderness, and pain usually eaten by on eating. Infection and sialadenitis are common complications. For a definitive diagnosis, sialography is imperative, especially to diagnose the presence of several calculi or to detect all strictures.

A few cases of balloon-catheter sialodochoplasty and wire-basket removal of caculi have been reported, mainly in foreign journals (ref. 1-3). Also, calculus was removed by an angioplasty balloon catheter (ref. 4).

The most likely surgical management of intraglandular parotid calculi would involve parotidectomy. There does not seem to be a consensus on managing calculi located between the hilus and anterior to the masseter muscle. Extraoral parotid sialolithotomy for calculus extraction has been performed under sialographic and ultrasonographic guidance (ref. 5).

The surgical approach to submandibular calculi is influenced by the location of the stone. Palpable stones anterior to the posterior border of the mylohyoid muscle usually are extracted using a transoral incision. When the stone is posterior to the mylohyoid muscle, removal of the entire gland is recommended (ref. 6.7). The complication rate for these procedures and associated anesthesia is not negligible (ref. 8).

In our independent small series during the last 10 years, we have achieved a high success rate. Contrary to other authors' (ref. 5) experience, we did not have difficulty removing parotid calculi located more than 1.5 cm from the papilla, although removal of calculi from the Wharton duct is generally easier than the stensen duct. The course and small size of the stensen duct often makes instrument manipulation difficult. In our 2 cases of failure, the calculi were larger than the ducts and impacted. These ducts had long strictures in their distal segments, which made instrument approach to the calculi and manipulation impossible. A successful removal of this type of calculus was reported with a vascular snare (ref. 9).

Endoscopic laser lithotripsy is unavailable at our institution. Endoscopically controlled laser lithotripsy for removal of a stone in the stensen duct (ref. 10) and submandibular lithitis (ref. 11) has been reported. Our 2 cases of failure could have benefited from this method. A success rate of 36% to 53% has been reported for extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy (ref. 12).

Wehrmann et a1 (ref. 13) developed a miniaturized lithotriptor, and a significantly higher percentage of patients were free of calculi (stone-free rate, 67%) after treatment. The authors did not report whether any case in this series required supplemental mechanical retrieval of calculi.

In conclusion, mechanical removal of calculi and sialodochoplasty by balloon catheter are excellent alternatives to surgery. These procedures are more cost-effective, with reduced risk of morbidity when compared with the surgical alternatives. The long-term exit following the procedure is excellent. If the mechanical retrieval of calculi fails, laser lithotripsy, extracorporal lithotripsy, or both will improve the success rate.

Swollen Glands, Purging and Your Bulimia

Often when a bulimia sufferer is on the path of recovery, the most distressing sight to witness is the swollen face. Especially when working on bulimia recovery with a resolve to stop vomiting, noticing the swollen glands brings the sufferer back to throwing up in an attempt to bring the swollen neck glands back down.

Often this high motivation to beat bulimia is sabotaged by continually developing swollen glands, which makes recovery very difficult. If this is the vicious cycle you can relate to, then there are things you can do to regain a sense of health, well-being and your usual face shape and form.

In an ordinary person, any form of gland swelling is usually a normal body response to an injury, infection, disease or abnormal growth of this area.

Unlike an infection of the glands where a response to a course of antibiotics would flush out any bacterial invasion – facial swelling in the cheek and jaw regions due to bulimia is NOT curable using conventional medicines. The simple fact is as long as a person with bulimic tendencies continues to throw-up; she or he will always have signs of swelling in the facial area.

Vomiting damages the gland tissue by constant attack from the stomach acids. Swelling is a normal defense reaction to healing any irritation caused by vomiting. Most of this swelling is simply water retention in your glands, as well as the glands themselves working to over compensate the loss of fluid elsewhere in the body.

This means when you vomit, all you are doing is getting rid of the water from your glands such as Salivary glands & Parotid glands. Thus giving the impression of reduced swelling, but this is only temporary because your body immediately tries to repair the damaged glands and starts to retain water again – bringing about a vicious circle.

The only way to treat this is to stop vomiting all together, but gradually. For most bulimia sufferers like you, that means actually stopping the binges that takes place – which is far easier to control than the auto-reflex of vomiting.

Binging and purging is an automatic learned response; because it is a learned behavior, you can choose to un- learn it in no time. Once you stop vomiting, after a few months you should see your face returning to normal. But be patient, return of your normal facial size could take time, depending on your own healing process as well as where the other severe damages are found in your body (eg: stomach lining, ulceration of digestive tract, load on your heart/liver/kidney functions, abnormalities of electrolytes, teeth and gum damage, knuckles and so on).

Here are some natural remedies you can try:

Many natural remedies can also help you recover your face that much faster by taking better care and giving it the best condition for your own body to heal itself.

Gargling every day with rock-salt water (use warm water) can help to clear any minor infection, as the Iodine found in the rock salt will help to speed up this recovery process.

Nutritionally you can do a lot too:

. Eating Mackerel can reduce inflammation by the active release of prostaglandins (hormone like substance).

. Berries are a good source of vitamin C – which helps with any Thyroid glands problem due to the immune boosting abilities.

. Sea vegetables such as seaweed are a rich source of iodine, as is Salmon which also contains Omega-3 Fatty acids.

. Brazil nuts contain Selenium, which helps to maintain any endocrine systems including Parotid glands in your neck.

. Eating carrots can help to soothe the mucous membrane throughout the digestive tract, reducing irritation and inflammation. It is a very good to cleanse your overworked liver with toxins too.

Onion on the other hand counter acts fluid retention, and helps with Gout (swelling) in the neck region.

You can also flavor your food with a pinch of Saffron, as it has anti-inflammation properties, but also gives you a fantastic aroma and color to your dish.

Avoid foods such as coffee, cola, sugary foods, cabbage as well as eating salt (as opposed to gargling it) – as they hinder healing of the damaged tissue and slows recovery.

Natural interventions to treat your swollen glands due to purging, needs dedication and patience from your part! Avoid expecting over-night miracles, for the bulimia effects to wear off, as you accept your own personal responsibilities for weaning off purging. If you take better care of yourself, bulimia symptoms like swollen glands, sore throat, constant loss of voice and regular infection in this area will diminish with time and you will see a marked difference in the size and shape of your face!

What You Need to Know About Cat Food

Cat Food Info # 1 Cats Need Protein in their Cat Food

The cat food you feed to your cat should always be rich in protein. This generally should come from meat, poultry or fish. Many cat food brands advertise chicken, beef, and tuna flavored cat food because they know that cats need protein and cat owners are looking for quality cat food. However, you need to make sure the cat food you buy has a sufficient amount of cat food regardless of what flavor it is.

Cat Food Info # 2 Cat Food with Taurine

Also check the cat food you typically buy for an amino acid called taurine. This particular amino acid is very important in the overall health of your cat, and your cat will eat as much food as it has to in order to supplement this particular amino acid. So, if you are buying cheap cat food that does not have the proper nutrients your cat will eat a lot. If you buy a nutrient rich cat food then your cat will eat little and save you more money while still getting proper nutrition.

Cat Food Info # 3 Canned Cat Food or Dry Cat Food?

Many people do not know either they should buy canned or dry cat food, or whether it even matters. Because of this, many people simply buy the cat food that is most affordable or convenient for them. This is actually a mistake. Cats should be fed a mixture of cat food. The dry cat food should be given for free feeding, especially if you are away on vacation or out for the day. Canned cat food should be supplemented at other times as well because it has water in the food and significantly more protein than the carbohydrate rich dry cat food. Not to mention the same food over and over might bore your cat and cause him to stop eating that cat food alike.

Cat Food Info # 4 Avoid Cat Food Fillers

Cats need to eat a cat food that is rich in protein, so make sure the amount of fillers is kept to a minimum. Carbohydrates are not essential for a cat's existence, so do not buy cat food that is full of them. Instead, read labels and buy cat food that is not filled with fillers and other by products.

How To Heal Foot Ulcer For People With Diabetes

For people with diabetes, ulcer growing on feet can be common. It is important to heal it soonest possible before it gets worse. Healing needs good foot care and one needs to treat it with antibiotic. Also, one needs to remove the dead tissue that is growing on the feet. For people with foot ulcer, one should try not to walk too much to let the ulcer heal properly. One should also keep the feet clean to prevent more bacteria to infest the wounds, and one should follow the doctor's advice as closely as possible in order for the ulcer to heal faster.

There is a new medication in the market known as Regranex gel that is use to treat people with diabetic condition who have mouth ulcer. This medication only works for those that have enough blood vessels going to the leg. It promotes new blood vessels to grow and also to speed up the healing of ulcer. It is not created directly from blood products and hence safer for use.

To better make use of this medication, here are some tips to follow. Before applying it, you need to clean the ulcer and have all the dead tissue removed by your doctor. It will take 2 to 10 weeks for the ulcer to heal completely. The success rate of healing with Regranex is about 50 percent. This is better as compared to just letting the ulcer heal by itself. Unfortunately, Regranex is quite expensive at the moment.

You can try out Regranex for a better solution to your diabetic food ulcer. Take note to still continue giving extra care to your feet, and working closely with your doctor, for a good recovery of your foot ulcer.

How To Raise Creatinine Levels

If you're hunting out for ways in which you can improve muscle mass, it might benefit you to take a look at how creatinine can help you. Creatinine is a chemical waste molecule that is the by-product of muscle metabolism. It is produced from creatine, a molecule that plays a key role in the generation of energy in the muscles. An interesting fact is that around 2% of your body's creatine gets converted into creatinine every day, and then gets transported through the bloodstream to your kidneys. Once it reaches your kids, they filter it out and get rid of it through your urine.

In recent years, though, the positive power of creatinine has been explored and has been found to be a massive energy powerhouse. Since it is a natural element that lies in muscle cells, creatinine can make your muscles more powerful and improve your endurance. Raising creatinine levels does not always have to depend on supplements and steroids. Check out some tips that can improve creatinine b, both naturally as well as with external help.

Tips To Increase Creatinine Levels

  1. To begin with, be sure to include protein-rich foods in your daily diet. According to certain studies, a diet that has very low protein content may cause reduced creatinine levels and this shows up through urine testing. Foods such as chicken, lean beef and legumes are the richest sources of proteins. It is extremely essential to eat green leafy vegetables and iron rich foods, since lowed iron levels may also cause reduced urinary creatinine levels. The greatest natural sources of creatinine are meat and fish. Consumption of raw fish such as tuna, salmon and mackerel in the form of sushi or sashimi are certain to boost your creatinine levels. Moreover, raw fish enterprises of omega-3 fatty acids which are highly proficient antioxidant boosters for the body. Fishes are also great catalysts for creatinine synthesis, as they are very rich in amino acid, methionine. It is estimated that about two pounds of raw fish or meat contains five grams of pure creatinine monohydrate powder.
  2. Drinking plenty of water daily boosts creatinine levels. Studies have shown that dehydration can cause plunges in creatinine levels by reducing urinary output. Since creatinine gets out of your body through your urine, this decrease in output may also cause reduced kidney function by subduing creatinine urinary levels.
  3. Get checked thoroughly for any urinary tract infections. Regular health checkups can prevent and correct any infections that can affect your creatinine levels. Urinary tract infections cause reduced creatinine levels by causing your bladder to become inflated, obstructive proper urine output. Treatment with antibiotics may be necessary. Heed your physician's advice and take all mediations as prescribed.
  4. Consult your physician regarding any prescription medications or supplements you are currently on. It has been observed that certain medications lower creatinine levels by affecting the central nervous system.

A word of caution – As with anything, too much creatinine in your body can lead to harmful results and even adversely affect your kidneys. If your kidneys get overladen, toxins start building up, which in turn might cause other serious problems. There are certain side effects such as dehydration, weight gain, cramps, nausea and diarrhea, which are the result of too much creatinine in your body. If you observe any of these symptoms, consult your physical immediately and get your creatinine levels balanced out to meet your fitness goals, safely.

Hyperacidity Natural Remedies – Simple Ways to Cure the Problem

Presence of excess acid than normal is the condition of hyperacidity which can be treated effectively by simple remedies. As this condition can promote heartburn, ulcers and acid reflux, you should treat this as soon as possible. Stomach needs certain amount of acid to digest complex foods, lack of acid can slow down the digestive system, but due to many factors, sometimes gastric glands secrete more than necessary quantity of acid which causes the condition of hyperacidity.

As there are many factors which are responsible for hyperacidity and it is a situation which can give rise to other problems which are capable of disabling the normal daily routine of any person, hence all round treatment of the problem is necessary for effective treatment. Remedies can provide simple ways of curing the problem but until the root cause of the problem is not raised the problem keeps on surfacing. Too much recurrence of hyperacidity can damage the delicate internal tissues of the stomach to cause blisters which may turn into dangerous ulcers.

Frequent hunger, pain in upper abdomen after a large meal, vomiting, nausea, bitter taste in mouth, burning sensation in the stomach are few common symptoms of hyperacidity. A glass of cold milk with very little amount of sugar is the most commonly used and effective remedy for treating hyperacidity. Milk has enzymes which can nullify acid and reduce the pain or burning sensation immediately. Drinking adequate amount of water in the day is very important for treating hyperacidity as water improves digestive system and also works as alkali to effectively nullify the excess acid formation.

Chewing basil leaves after meal or fennel seeds are also good for controlling excess acid secretion, it improves digestive system to provide an effective treatment for the problem. Chewing a piece of jaggery also helps in decreasing the acid presence in the stomach. Ginger is excellent herb for all sorts of digestive problems including excess acid secretion. Ginger tea made by mixing some quantity of ginger in boiling water, using ginger in salad or as a spice in the food can very effectively alleviate the problem of hyperacidity.

Consumption of fruits like banana, apple, melon, cucumber and avocado also keeps the problem of hyperacidity under control. Avoiding consumption of tea, coffee, alcohol and beverages also helps the body in digesting food without secreting extra amount of acid. Sugar intake shall also be reduced to minimum as sugar promotes acid formation. Use lemon either with food or by mixing it in the water for treating the problem of hyperacidity effectively.

Eating habits and life style related issues also play an important role in causing hyperacidity. People with lack of physical activity and exercise can develop this problem very easily, overweight people put extra pressure on their digestive system to promote this problem. People under stress or who sleep less can also suffer with excess acid formation even though having a reliably healthy digestive system. Some simple changes can also work as effective remedies for hyperacidity like taking a light walk after meals, avoiding tight fitting clothes, eating in a right posture by keeping the back straight as much as possible and chewing well before consuming the food.