Fibromyalgia Not Real

Fibromyalgia Is not a Real Disease

Says Fibromyalgia Research Doctor

From THE FRONT PAGE of The New York Times Article

Dr. Frederick Wolfe, the director of the National Databank for Rheumatic Diseases and the lead author of the 1990 paper that first defined the diagnostic guidelines for fibromyalgia, says he has become cynical and discouraged about the diagnosis. He now considers the condition a physical response to stress, depression, and economic and social anxiety. "

Dr. Wolfe goes on to say, "Some of us in those days thought that we had actually identified a disease, which this is clearly not."

"… other doctors – including (Dr. Wolfe) the one who wrote the 1990 paper that defined fibromyalgia but who has since changed his mind – say that the disease does not exist and that Lyrica and the other drugs will be taken by millions of people who do not need them. "

Just when I was optimistic that the traditional medical community was finally getting the message that fibromyalgia is a very real and very serious illness, this kind of short-sighted, arrogant, and simple-minded myth raises its ugly head once again. This bit of news, by a prominent rheumatologist, is not a huge surprise. When was the last time you visited your rheumatologist (after waiting months to be seen) and felt like they understood your fibromyalgia? And if they did believe you had fibromyalgia, were they helpful?

Probably not, since their answer is to recommend more and more drugs, year end and year out. The side effects of these drugs begin to add up and pretty soon you realize your fibromyalgia symptoms are not much better, and worse, you've got additional symptoms from all those meds.

I've repeatedly been asked to give my opinion on the over-hyped new drug for fibromyalgia, Lyrica. I've kept quiet for two reasons. One, I wanted to give Lyrica the benefit of the doubt. Unfortunately Lyrica has proven to be ineffective for the majority of my patients, as well as the fibromyalgia sufferers I'm in contact with around the world. Secondly, I thought at least Pfizer's multi-million dollar drug campaign would help the public understand the pain fibromyalgia patients experience day in and day out. Surely the TV and print ads would help others realize that yes there is such a thing as fibromyalgia, here are the symptoms, and this is why aunt Jane feels so miserable each day.

According to the New York Times, worldwide sales of Lyrica reached $ 1.8 billion in 2007, up 50 percent from 2006. Analysts predict sales will rise an additional 30 percent this year, helped by consumer advertising. During the first nine months of 2007, Pfizer spent $ 46 million on Lyrica ads.

Sadly, The New York Times and other print media have elected to take a different slant. Instead of helping dispel the myth that those with fibromyalgia are crazy, lazy, or depressed, they've elected to focus on the minimum of doctors who think fibromyalgia is not real.

As I lecture and interact with doctors throughout North America, I routinely encounter doctors who do not believe fibromyalgia exists, but the number has steadily declined. But now this article comes out and what will the public think?

More on Lyrica

Lyrica is the first prescription medication approved to treat fibromyalgia. Pfizer's Lyrica, commonly known as pregabalin, binds to receptors in the brain and spinal cord and seems to reduce activity in the central nervous system. But, no one knows exactly how Lyrica works.

Some say that Lyrica does not work well enough to have warranted its FDA approval. In 2004, the FDA as a remedy for diabetic nerve pain, reviewed Lyrica. The reviewers recommended against approving the drug, citing its side effects. But the FDA ignored the advice of Lyrica reviewers, and approved it anyway. Then Pfizer asked the FDA to expand the approved uses of Lyrica to include the treatment of fibromyalgia, and the agency did so in June.

According to in clinical trials, patients taking Lyrica reported that their pain fell on average about 2 points on a 10-point scale, compared with 1 point for patients taking a placebo. Not a big deal to say the least.

About 30 percent of patients said their pain fell by at least half, compared with 15 percent taking placebos.

The study involved 75 participants took Lyrica and 75 took a sugar pill or placebo. So 38 of those taking Lyrica had at least a 50% in pain. But 23 participants taking a placebo had at least a 50% reduction in pain. Lyrica was helpful for 15 more participants than a sugar pill. But, at what cost?

Lyrica causes gain gain and edema, or swelling, as well as dizziness and sleepiness. According to the New York Times, in 12-week trials, 9 percent of patients saw their weight rise more than 7 percent, and the weight gain appeared to continue over-time. The following outlines some of the "common" side effects of Lyrica:

Experiencing Weight Gain

Blurred Vision

Body Tremors

Possible Insomnia

Gastrointestinal Difficulties, such as Diarrhea and Constipation

Mild to Severe Headaches

Nausea

Swelling in Hands

Dry Mouth

Swelling in Ankles

Dizziness

Drowsiness

Possible Fainting

Many individuals who have been prescribed Lyrica, and then quit taking it without their doctors consent have discovered that they suffer from many uncomfortable symptoms. This is a direct result of withdrawal from this prescription drug. Many individuals who start Lyrica to soothe the symptoms associated with fibromyalgia do not realize that this medication can become addictive. If you wish to stop Lyrica treatment, you must discuss it with a medical professional. The doctor will then set lower and lower dosages until you are able to stop treatment with no dangerous side-effects. Obviously I'm not a big fan of Lyrica. I believe there are safer and more effective ways to reverse the symptoms of fibromyalgia.

Read the entire New York Times article at the link- http://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/14/health/14pain.html

Stroke Rehab

In the US around 70,000 people suffer a Stroke each year. Rehab is crucial to help the victims of Strokes cope with the effects of a Stroke and recover to a normal and healthy life.

How well a patient recovers from a Stroke depends on many factors. Minimizing brain damage during the Stroke will make Rehab faster and more effective. Rehab can not cure the Stroke but can help in long-term recovery of the aftereffects of brain damage.

The first step would be to diagnose a Stroke. A number of tests may be done on the patient to diagnose the type of Stroke so that the professionals can determine a treatment and rehab plan. This includes blood pressure, blood sampling, X-ray, ECG, Echocardiogram, brain scans such as MRI and CT scans, and Carotid Ultrasound scanning.

After the diagnosis the medical treatment begins. During a Stroke brain tissue is damaged by blood clots (ischemic stroke) and / or internal bleeding (hemorrhagic stroke). Various drug treatments must be started immediately to treat this condition. If used soon enough, they can help prevent damage to the brain.

These include-Anti-platelet drugs, such as aspirin, to prevent clotting, anti-coagulant drugs, cholesterol lowering drugs, and antihypertensive drugs. Some patients may go in for surgical procedures like stenting to clear the clogs and reduce the intensity of the Stroke.

Rehabilitation therapy begins in the emergency care hospital within 24-48 hours after the Stroke, once the patient has stabilized. Rehabilitation of Stroke victims is a difficult and time-consuming task. It helps the Stroke survivors to relearn skills that are lost by brain damage during the Stroke.

It also teaches new skills to make up for any disabilities and to practice and relearn communication, memory, and voluntary and physical skills. Commonly people have a surge of recovery in the weeks following the Stroke, followed by a slower recovery in the next year or so.

Stroke can cause five types of disabilities: Paralysis, problems controlling movement, sensory disorders including pain, problems using or understanding language, and emotional distortions.

Paralysis is the most common result of Stroke. It causes problems of movement, posture and swallowing. Left-brain damage causes right-limb paralysis. Stroke victims may also experience sensory problems like pain, numbness and loss of feeling. Some may have aphasia, problems using or understanding language. People with Global aphasia may lose all their linguistic abilities.

Stroke can also cause damage to the parts of the brain related to memory, learning and awareness. Some also experience some emotional trauma involving fear, anxiety, frustration and suicidal thoughts.

During the Rehabilitation process, doctors are responsible for the long-term care of the Stroke survivors, including neurologists who look after acute care and physiatrists who look after the Rehab program. Physical therapists help patients with mobility issues like walking, climbing stairs and maintaining balance. Occupational therapists teach them daily living activities like feeding, grooming and using the toilet. Speech therapists help with language skills and swallowing problems. Rehab nurses care for the patient and educate the family concerning how to care for them. Social workers help Stroke survivors and their families with counseling and community resources.

Stroke is a serious disease, rendering the survivor in a weak and deficient position. The need for aftercare and Rehab is high, as the aftereffects of a Stroke are numerous and interfere with normal life function in an unmanageable way. It is only with the help of this team of doctors, nurses and therapists that the patient can be rehabilitated.

Traction Alopecia – What Are The Causes?

What is Traction Alopecia? The dictionary definition for the term "alopecia" refers to hair loss or baldness. The "transaction" portion refers to stress hair loss. So, when you hear the term "traction alopecia", it will be referring to hair loss or thinning caused by a stressed scalp.

Causes of Traction Alopecia

The causes of this type of stress hair loss are just what they sound like – habits or things that we do to our hair that causes stressed scalp conditions. The major cause of this condition relates to hair styles that pull the hair shafts tightly and cause scalp stress. Hair styles that generally create scalp stress are tightly woven cornrows, tightly plaited braids and pigtails and any hair style that requires that the hair strands be folded tightly and either woven or fastened tightly. These hair styles are prevalent in both males and females and are primarily found in youth, teen and young adults. Hair weaving in men to cover areas which have experienced thinning or lost hair is becoming more prevalent and is also becoming an increasing cause of traction alopecia.

Another Cause of Traction Alopecia

Another cause of traction alopecia is also an external one. Any trauma to the scalp can cause stress hair loss. Any traction on the hair strand loosens the grip of the follicle on the hair strand and it falls out sooner than the biological cellular programming of the hair follicle intentions. The stressed scalp permits the hair strand to be loosened and shed before its time in the area of ​​the scalp stress; ie in the area of ​​the traumatic injury or adjacent to the cornrow area or the areas experiencing the greatest tug and pull when you braid or pigtail your hair.

Why is the Early Shedding an Issue?

Each of the follicles located in your skin produces hair strands all over your body. These hair follicles are full of hundreds of pre-programmed cells that produce the hair shaft. The programming in these cells initiates and promotes the life cycle of the hair shaft and governs how many times that life cycle will be repeated. This life cycle can span a period of only a few months or several years. The important thing to note here is the number of times the life cycle is to be repeated. For example, if your cellular programming says that the life cycle will only be repeated 50 times, then, if you shed the hair strand before its life cycle is over and do so often, you will exhaust the number of life cycles those hair follicles can produce hair strands. The result will be permanent stress hair loss. Stress hair loss means bald or thinning areas in beautiful full head of hair!

Emotional and Psychological Effects of Stress Hair Loss

While the causes of traction alopecia can somehow be controlled, the emotional and psychological effects on the internal self image and self confidence of the person experiencing the stress hair loss sometimes can not be controlled. Thinning hair can affect your appearance and that can affect your business relationships as well as romantic ones. You will look into your mirror and you will not see the same person that you have seen in the past and you will likely long to return to that more youthful and attractive appearance.

The key to reversing or controlling the damage of traction alopecia is to identify and control the causes of the stress hair loss as early as possible. It is vitally important to identify the causes of traction alopecia and correct the causes of stress hair loss immediately before the thinning or loss becomes permanent and irreversible.

Glaucoma and the Optic Nerve

Glaucoma is a disease involving the optic nerve that affects the loss of retinal ganglion cells. If glaucoma is left untreated it will eventually lead to permanent damage of the optic nerve and then blindness. Glaucoma is caused most commonly by intraocular pressure on the nerves in the eye. A damaged visual field can never be fixed or recaptured. Glaucoma is a tricky disease because its progress is so slow. It can gradually wear down one's eyesight without the person noticing much of a difference and once the disease is detected; there is not much a doctor can do to prevent it from getting worse, because it was detected at such a late stage.

People with ocular pressure, diabetes, and African American decent are three times more likely than others to develop Glaucoma. People that have a family history of Glaucoma have a six percent chance to develop the disease than people without a family history of it. The use of steroids has also been linked to the development of Glaucoma. Studies have also shown, in rare cases, that Glaucoma could have been linked to hypertension (high blood pressure).

Glaucoma is usually diagnosed after a routine eye examination with an optometrist or ophthalmologist. The doctor will test the eye for changes in intraocular pressure, changes in the size or shape of the eye and an examination of the optic nerve. Glaucoma could also be examined by looking at the patient's background; their sex, race, history of drug use, refraction, inheritance and family history. The majority of treatments for Glaucoma is the continued use of eye drops to help lower the level of intraocular pressure.

There is yet to be a cure for Glaucoma but surgery is one way to treat the disease. The surgery will help to lower intraocular pressure by allowing fluid to leave the eye after a hole has been opened up in the meshwork. Surgery can be performed with a laser or conventionally. A patient could also undergo a canaloplasty. A canaloplasty is when the Schlemm Canal is opened, allowing fluids to flow freely, extremely lowerening the pressure of the eye. Glaucoma patients that do not respond to these normal treatments could look into Glaucoma drainage implants. This is the final option for patients if the eye does not respond to any other treatment. A flow tube is inserted in the eye to allow for fluid to flow out of the eye, thus lowering the intraocular pressure.

There are a handful of different stages of Glaucoma. They are primary, developmental, secondary and absolute Glaucoma. All of these stages develop over time and can ever lead to blindness if the disease is not treated properly. Not all people with elevated pressure in the eye develop Glaucoma. Some patients of Glaucoma have developed the disease without elevated pressure in the eye. This could just be from their family history. In fact, the most common type of glaucoma disease is hereditary. Everyone is at risk for the disease and in most cases there are little to no symptoms.

Health Benefits of Propolis

Propolis is a natural antibiotic that is fast gaining in popularity in the application of home remedies! It’s one of those bee products that really cause me to wow at the wonder of nature and marvel at the ability of the highly organised insect – honey bee. Now, let me tell you what exactly propolis is.

Some trees and conifers produce sticky resins as part of their immune system to defend themselves against disease. Honey bees collect these substances that ooze from the buds of these plants. After chewing them and mixing them with their saliva and other substances, propolis is formed. This nutrient-rich substance is of vital importance for the survival of the honey bees in the beehive. It is created to sterilize the hive and protect it against diseases and infection. Not only does it help to inhibit the spread of bacteria, virus, and fungi that would otherwise pose a significant threat in the closely-knit quarters, it also and help fight against climatic changes, such as wind and cold. It is also used as a “putty” to seal cracks and openings in the hive and to strengthen and repair honeycombs, and for this reason is also known as ‘bee glue’. Another fact that amazes me is that honey bees also use this sticky substance to embalm or “mummify” the carcasses of larger insects that invade the hive. Such intruders are immediately stung to death but because the defending bees can’t transport such heavy corpse away from the hive, they embalm them rather than allowing them to decay. The ancient Eygptians observed this and used propolis as one of the embalming agents for their exquisite mummies!

Propolis contains approximately 50-70% resins, 30% wax, 10% etheric oils and 5% pollen. It is especially rich in amino acids, important for immune system function. It has a high vitamin content (Vitamin A (carotene), Vitamin B1, B2, B3, biotin) and is extremely rich in bioflavonoids (Vitamin P) which are believed to have numerous immune building properties and health benefits. Bioflavonoids are the natural pigments in fruits and vegetables and are found in abundance in oranges. This bee glue contains almost 500 times more bioflavonoids than is found in oranges! It also contains an array of albumin, calcium, magnesium, potassium and phosphorus. Like Royal Jelly and Bee Pollen, it contains a number of unidentified compounds which work together synergistically to create a balanced, nutritive substance.

Propolis can be purchased completely raw and unprocessed, but it in its natural state is a sticky substance and is very difficult to handle. Some beekeepers will package the raw propolis and freeze it in small portions. It can then be added to a coffee grinder in its frozen state and ground for easy consumption. Most producers utilize a process where the active ingredients are ‘leached’ into water or alcohol, then either packaged in liquid form or dried and capsulated.

Because of its antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, this precious substance has been used as a healing agent for many centuries. It has the ability to provide protection against infectious invaders, promote healing and regeneration of tissue, and provides a superior source of energy and stamina. It has been used as ointments for healing cuts and wounds and shown to have outstanding value for a wide variety of illnesses. It is also used as a natural alternative to penicillin and other antibiotics. It is said to be particularly safe and effective and inhibits the resistance-building effect that is a negative factor with prescription antibiotics. In the former Eastern Bloc countries, antibiotics have never been widely available, but beekeeping is widely practised. To help prevent many diseases, hospitals and clinics recommended washing, gargling or irrigating the sinuses with propolis rinses, as well as taking propolis internally. This bee product is certainly a good weapon against bacteria when used topically. It can clearly prevent infections, and can also help heal infections that have already begun.

Do you know that now even toothpastes contain natural ingredients related to honey bees. Propolis has become a healthy alternative to synthetic brands of toothpastes as it is especially useful in mouth and gum disorders. Our mouth is one of the most sensitive spots of our body. This is the place where the synesthesia of senses starts and the food we visualize develops its full smell and taste. The mouth is the starting point of the food digestion. A healthy mouth cavity is certainly one of the elements contributing to the appetite and good mood in general. If the mouth develops sore spots, thrush or gum disease, it causes the whole system to disrupt, resulting in pain and tormenting feeling. Published clinical research demonstrates that propolis fights bacteria, prevents tooth decay, enhances oral hygiene, heals bleeding gums, and prevents gums receding. Manufacturers of propolis toothpastes and mouth sprays claim that their products leave teeth clean, gums feeling healthy, taste great without artificial ingredients, and produce no negative side effects. The salesperson at a honey shop which I often frequent explained that propolis toothpaste are very suitable for young children’s use as even if it’s accidentally swallowed, it’s extremely safe. Such products are easily applied, and have increasingly become part of the everyday dental hygiene of people who are especially interested in natural remedies. My latest discovery while shopping for honey products : propolis extract now even comes in the form of sprays and candies. The spray claims that it is effective against flu, cuts, burns, gum and mouth infections, throat discomforsts and intestinal discomfort, while the candy is sold as a good therapeutic substitute to the traditional throat lozenges and an aid to curing flu, colds, throat discomfort, cough and bad breath.

Note of Caution: Propolis is generally non-toxic, though allergic reactions such as skin rashes, swelling, redness, eczema or fever have been reported. As the effects of propolis during pregnancy and breast-feeding have not been sufficiently evaluated, women should not use it during these times unless directed to do so by a physician.

Source: www.benefits-of-honey.com/propolis.html

Type 2 Diabetes and The Healing of Your Wounds!

Wounds and skin infections are slow to heal in the person with Type 2 diabetes. Wound healing is the body's natural way of repairing the damage involving the dermal and the epidermal tissues, the skin layers mostly involved in the occurrence of wounds. It is a complex cascade of events that:

  • stimulates the activity of white blood cells, the defenders of the body against infections
  • the aggregation of platelets, the blood cells involved in blood clotting, and
  • the involvement of endothelial cells, the layer of cells that lines the interior of the blood vessel walls

Failure in the normal processes involved in wound healing is the most important cause of amputation in the United States. In fact, according to the John Hopkins POC-IT Center, 81 percent of people who underwent amputation have this problem. Hyperglycemia, or high blood sugar, the most important finding in poorly controlled Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes, is one of the most significant factors involved in poor wound healing that leads to amputation and other surgical interventions.

High blood sugar levels lead to reduced activity of the immune system, according to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. With this particular decreased activity, the body becomes vulnerable to the attacks of infectious microorganisms such as bacteria, viruses and fungal infections.

How can you improve wound healing if you have Type 2 diabetes?

1. Proper wound cleaning : If you have a wound, check with your doctor. He will advise you about the proper care and cleaning techniques to encourage better wound healing.

2. Infection contr ol : Infected non-healing wounds need antibiotic coverage to eliminate the possible infection-causing microbes proliferating within the actual wound itself.

3. Relieve possible mechanical stresses that add insult to the already-existing damage : Pressure and repetitive injury causes must be eliminated to prevent further insult to your already infected non-healing wound.

4. Apply the correct wound dressing : There is no such thing as a dressing that suits all wounds. However, a moist wound environment that is physiologically adequate promotes better tissue and skin repair. The correct dressing prerequisites further insult to the wound from the external environment … it brings further trauma, infection and contamination.

5. Control your blood sugar level : A normal blood sugar level can encourage the activity of white blood cells, the defenders of the human body against the possible attack of infection-causing microbes. The healthy activity of these defenders may improve and even speed up the tissue repair within the wound area.

Skin infections and wounds that can not be healed could lead to gangrene and extremely amputation of a foot or limb. You can prevent an amputation and other surgically related wound management even if you have Type 2 diabetes. Proper wound care coupled with good blood sugar control is the ultimate key for the prevention of poor and delayed wound healing.

Can the Flu Virus Really Spread in a Swimming Pool?

The flu has become a great concern to many people. This is especially the case with the rise of the H1N1 strain. When in the swimming pool it helps to know that this condition can be tough to pass around. It will still be important to handle all proper cleaning processes though.

A study by the Center for Disease Control states that some types of this condition can be disinfected by chlorine. Recommended levels of chlorine for a swimming pool have been found to be able to disinfect some types of flu viruses. This has been found to be the case for the avian strain of flu. It is not fully certain as to whether or not the H1N1 form can be handled.

Even with this factor the there is no way how this can be fully disinfected in pool water. Germs that can get into the water over time can still be found around the water. This is because of how the effects of chlorine in the water can easily weaken over time unless new chlorine materials are inserted into the water. Therefore the effectiveness of the chlorine to kill off germs can vary.

The virus can be spread in areas that are outside of a swimming pool. These include handlebars for getting in and out of the pool, physical areas for any diving boards and even materials that are around the locker rooms of a pool area. A pool area can be treated like a public place in many cases and as a result it can be a place where it can spread just as easily.

A good thing to do with regards to helping to keep from getting in contact with the flu is to be sure to wash oneself before and after getting into a swimming pool. It also helps to be sure to avoid going to a pool if one is not feeling well. This is so that it will be easier to keep from getting the flu virus to spread around.

Some flu forms can be disinfected in a swimming pool but it is not all forms of this condition are known to be able to be handled easily. It will be important to be aware of how it can spread in areas outside of the water though. Fortunately using a few processes for cleaning can help to keep the virus from being spread at a pool.

Vitamin D and Steroids

Steroids are frequently prescribed by doctors for a variety of clinical disorders such as asthma, low back pain, rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, MS, and Systemic Lupus Erythematosus. Quite often, patients stay on steroids for a long duration. And end up experiencing serious side-effects, which are sometimes even worse than the original disease, such as avascular necrosis of hip or shoulder, serious infections, diabetes, high blood pressure, glaucoma, macular edema, proximal myopathy, severe osteoporosis which can lead to fragility fractures.

Steroids and Vitamin D

While there are several mechanisms how stereotypes can cause their side-effects, vitamin D deficiency appears to be a major pathway. Steroids antagonize the beneficial effects of vitamin D. For example, in bone, vitamin D enhancements bone formation by stimulating osteoblasts, increasing calcium absorption from intestines and preventing secondary hyperparathyroidism. Steroids do exactly the opposite: they have inhibitory effect on osteoblasts, decrease calcium absorption from intestines, increase calcium wasting from kidneys and cause secondary hyperparathyroidism. In this way steroids cause a rapid bone loss (osteoporosis).

In addition, Vitamin D boosts up immune system whereas steroids suppress it. Vitamin D reduces blood pressure whereas steroids increase it. Vitamin D reduces insulin resistance whereas steroids increase it. Vitamin D builds up muscles whereas steroids cause myopathy.

It is pretty obvious that steroids antagonize the effects of vitamin D.

What is the mechanism?

One mechanism is that steroids alter the vitamin D receptor. Steroids also cause obesity, and consequentially, decrease the available circulating vitamin D. There could be other mechanisms as well.

From a clinical point, steroids rob you off the beneficial effects of Hormone D in as little as 5 days. Therefore, I recommend my patients to double the dose of vitamin D while they go on steroids, and pay close attention to their serum and urine calcium. Salt restriction to 3 grams per day and use of a thiazide diuretic can reduce the urine calcium wasting.

"Prevention is better than cure" is your best bet when it comes to steroid-induced osteoporosis because no drug available currently can effectively treat this type of osteoporosis.

Signs of Stroke – Can Meditations Cause a Stroke in an Otherwise Healthy Person?

Adam was in a good health condition when a stroke hit him. He was doing sports frequently, did not smoke or drink and was not overweight. He also was not aware of suffering from hypertension. What went wrong?

There are various signs of a stroke. It is not true that only obese or old people or people with hypertension can get a stroke. However, Adam did suffer from sever arthritis and took different medications. One was known to cause blood clotting.

Adam was only 42 when he had a stroke. Could the arthritis medication be the reason for it? Probably. Medication can have many different side effects. We all know that. Especially when you take different medications at the same time then the combination to those drugs can have unexpected results. Never take medication without consulting a physician and always tell your physician about the other drugs you probably take.

You often can not tell that someone has a stroke or not. But there is no time to waste. Getting quick treatment is crucial. If you believe you have a stroke then call 911 if you can. If you think someone else has a stroke ask him or her to lift the arms, smile broadly or repeat a simple sentence. If the person can not lift an arm, the smile looks odd or can not repeat the sentence you should get immediate help. If in doubt, get a physician and do not mess around.

Do not give the person medication. It could be that this medication caused the stroke and makes it even worse. There is nothing much you can do then getting help as quickly as possible.

Understanding Alopecia – Causes and Treatment

You see that you're losing tremendous amount of hair and this worry you too much. You think you're healthy and the hair loss just freaks you out. What gives? At some point of every individual's lives, hair loss is most likely to occur. Hair loss or alopecia occurs to both genders. Alopecia, for those unacquainted with it, is the widely-used medical term to describe hair loss in women. However, alopecia can be further differentiated into two more medical conditions which are alopecia areata and androgenic alopecia.

What do you think are the causes of alopecia? A less commonly-known cause of alopecia is the fluctuations in the female hormone estrogen which is acknowledged to contribute to lush hair growth. Women who are close to their menopausal years may find that their estrogen levels tend to fall at this time, so their hair does not grow out in the same volume as in previous years. Actually, it is quite difficult to make the distinction between alopecia caused by heightened testosterone levels and alopecia triggered by a drop in estrogen levels because they have almost the same symptoms.

There are actually 2 identifying state undering in alopecia and both are worth considering for:

1. Alopecia areata

This is caused by a malfunctioning immune system that tends to target your hair follicles. The main symptom of this type of hair loss is losing hair in patches around the scalp. This type of alopecia is rather unstable because sometimes the hair will grow back again even without medical attention, while in other cases the hair loss is permanent and may even progress further. One source attributes alopecia areata to an under-functioning thyroid gland that has also been targeted by the immune system. The problem is, even when the thyroid has been properly trated that will not bring back your lost hair.

2. Androgenic alopecia

This second sub-condition is caused by malfunctioning hormones and happens to occur quite commonly nowdays – one estimate places incidence at 20% of the entire female population. It is attributed to the overproduction of the androgenic hormone called testosterone which usually is produced in large quantities in male bodies but not to a very significant degree in women under normal conditions. When there is too much testosterone in men, they start to lose hair on their scalp but grow more hair on their bodies, for some strange reason. Women who have too much testosterone may find themselves losing hair on their scalp, growing facial hair and body hair to an alarming degree, and experiencing an outbreak of acne because their skin produces to the heightened testosterone levels.

Regardless of what causes alopecia or hair loss in women or to what degree, it is very traumatizing for women anyway because the hair on a woman's scalp is her crowning glory. A plain-looking woman with healthy hair can seem more beautiful than a pretty woman who is balding. That is why, when women start seeing the symptoms of alopecia on their heads, they will probably try to seek medical help as soon as possible.

If you do seek medical attention, your doctor may ask for a wait and see period to check if you are simply going through a phase where you experience a faster degree of shedding of hair (called telogen effluvium), or are really suffering from alopecia. Your doctor may prescribe certain treatments that aim to increase hair growth in your scalp again. One is to lower testosterone levels by consumption of oral contraceptives. Another is to take medicines that can halt the production of testosterone. Washing your scalp with a hair re-growth solution minoxidil is a third option. But bear in mind that all treatments have their own special effects so you need to be cautious about pursuing any hair re-growth program, particularly if you are pregnant.

Causes of Blindness

Blindness is the inability to see. The leading causes of chronic blindness include cataract, glaucoma, age-related degeneration, corneal opacities, diabetic retinopathy, trachoma, and eye conditions in children (eg caused by vitamin A deficiency). Age-related blindness is increasing through the world, as is blindness due to uncontrolled diabetes.
What Causes Blindness?

Vision problems can develop before a baby is born. Sometimes, parts of the eyes do not form the way they should. A kid's eyes may look fine, but the brain has trouble processing the information they send. The optic nerve sends pictures to the brain, so if the nerve does not form correctly, the baby's brain will not receive the messages needed for sight. Blindness can be genetic or inherited, which means that this problem gets passed down to a kid from parents through genes.
Blindness has many causes. In the United States, the leading causes are diabetes, glaucoma, maculardegeneration, and accidents (such as chemical burns or injuries from cords, fishing hooks, fireworks, racket balls, and similar objects). Worldwide, the leading causes of blindness are cataracts, river blindness, leprosy, and vitamin A deficiency.
Can it be invented?

Having an eye test at least every two years can help to detect problems that may need treatment before any permanent damage has been done.Some conditions, such as glaucoma and cataracts, can be rated to help preserve vision.It's important to wear protective eyeware in situations where accidental eye damage may occur, for example, at work, when playing sport or doing diy
Symptoms:

Symptoms vary from person to person, but may include: Trouble seeing colors and the brightness of colors in the usual way.Inability to tell the difference between shades of the same or similar colors. Often, the symptoms may be so mild that some people do not know they are color blind. A parent may notice signs of color blindness when a child is learning his or her colors.
Conditions degenerate further, as an armed clique gains control over food deliveries, subjugating their fellow internees and exposing them to rape and deprivation. Faced with starvation, internees do battle and burn down the asylum, only to find that the army has abandoned the asylum, after which the protagonists join the throngs of near helpless blind people outside who wander the devastated city and fight one another to survive.

Currently, there is no cure for glaucoma, but treatment can control the progress of the disease. The primary goal of treatment is to prevent further damage to the eye by lowering intraocular pressure (IOP) and to extremely prevent blindness. Treatment of glaucoma may include medications, surgery, or a combination of medication and surgery.

Tingling In The Penis – What It Means

If a man’s penis is tingling, it may be a sign of a serious health problem. More than just annoying, it may signal infection, inflammation and systemic disease. Tingling is often a sign of troubled nerve endings, irritated by inflammation, starved of nutrients, or damaged by trauma. For some men it is acute and may only last a few hours to a few days, and for other men it is a mysterious ailment that can go on for years. Diagnosis and treatment should be sought out immediately, to avoid chronic damage to the nerves and a loss of function. Supplements, penis health crèmes and medications may all support nerve regeneration, immune function and healing.

Poor circulation

Tingling in the penis may be caused by an acute or chronic case of poor circulation. While that might not sound terribly serious in nature, it is the cause of the poor circulation that determines how much a man should worry. Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death in men around the globe. Poor circulation to the hands, feet and pelvic region may be one of the first signs of cardiovascular disease to appear. Poor posture, obesity, diabetes, sedentary lifestyle and damage to the local capillaries in the penile tissues can also lead to reduced blood flow. In order to ensure a healthy stream of blood around the body, it is important to drink plenty of water, exercise 2-3 times per week, reduce white sugar and saturated fat in the diet, and consider using heart-healthy supplements such as garlic, hawthorn, fish oils, vitamin C, E and L-arginine.

Neuropathy

Nerve damage can occur through a variety of ways, and is highly detrimental to the sexual health of men as nerves do not regenerate easily once damaged. Physical trauma to local nerves and/or spinal nerves, poor blood flow, inflammation and infection can all lead to nerve damage, resulting in tingling, pain, numbness, or burning. Diabetes is a common cause of nerve damage in both men and women, as the high level of sugar in the blood stream reduces circulation and oxygenation of peripheral tissues. Stimulating circulation may help, but controlling blood sugars is vital to restoring sexual health. Alpha-lipoic acid, an antioxidant researched for its health benefits in diabetes, may restore some lost nerve function and protect nerve health in diabetics. Frequent or aggressive masturbation can also cause circulatory issues and nerve damage. Usually this sis temporary if penis receuves sufficient time to recuperate and penis select vitamins and minerals are applied to penile skin to provide a healing environment.

Infection

Sexual transmitted diseases and infections are one of the leading causes of penile tingling. If a man has recently had unprotected sex, and is now experiencing tingling in the penis, it is likely that he has contracted an infection. Genital warts, Candida, Chlamydia, gonorrhea and trichomonas are some of the most common pathogens responsible for causing this distressing symptom. In addition, non-specific urethritis is another possible diagnosis involving chronic inflammation of the urethra. Blood and urine tests will identify the source of the infection in most cases. According to a study published in the American Family Physician journal in 2010, medications such as azithromycin or doxycycline often treat STI’s and urethritis successfully. Men should also look into supporting immune function to ward off pathogenic viruses and bacteria. Vitamin C, A and Zinc are natural supplements that have been studied for their immune stimulating properties.

Health crèmes

Treating the local tissues with health crèmes is a great way of promoting penile health and improving nerve function. Penis health crèmes (most professionals recommend Man1 Man Oil) deliver a range of important nutrients for male health in a base of shea butter — a natural anti-inflammatory that moisturizes and soothes connective tissues. Vitamin C, E, A, alpha lipoic acid and L-arginine are included in the active ingredients. This combination will stimulate immune function, promote capillary health, benefit male hormones and reduce inflammation and irritation of nerves.

A Common Wound Problem After Breast Reduction Surgery

Breast reduction surgery is a highly effective operation at downsizing and reshaping large breasts. It is a fairly complex procedure that uses a keyhole skin removal and reduction approach to lift the nipple upward and create a more conical shape to the breast. From a plastic surgery standpoint, this is known as the 'inferior pedicle' technique and is the most method by which plastic surgeons perform breast reductions in the United States. There are other techniques for performing breast reduction, but the inferior pedicure method is reliable and adaptable to all types of breast sizes and shapes.

One of the most common complications from this method of breast reduction is separation or opening of the anchor or inverted T portion of the closure at the lower breast crease. This occurs so often that I inform all patients to expect it in either one or both of their breasts. This opening after surgery occurs because this is the point of maximum tightness or tension of the skin closure and, as healing and inflammation set in, the wound edges will separate. Sometimes it will be small, a dime or nickel size, and in others it can develop into an opening much bigger.

What is feasible about this problem, and very disturbing to patients, is that it does not usually appear until at least three weeks after surgery. The incision lines from the breast reduction look great for weeks and then this developments. By three weeks most patients assume that all potential 'problems' are over and everything will just continue to get better. But the biology of healing goes against this perception as the sunset of inflammation and wound tension relief create this delayed wound problem. Despite its ominous appearance, this breast wound separation is a self-solving problem. It may take a week or so reach its maximum size but it will heal and fill in on its own over the ensuing weeks.

What is Swine Flu?

Swine flu or swine influenza is a disease common in swine, with normal flu-like symptoms, but caused by any strain of the swine influenza virus (SIV – virus endemic in pigs). Although rare in humans, individuals with greater exposure to swine could contract swine influenza if the swine are carrying the particular rare strain of the SIV that is capable of affecting humans. Even then, it is a rare occurrence for the strain to be able to pass from human to human. This could occur if the SIV is able to mutate into a form that can easily be transmitted among humans.

The swine flu outbreak of 2009 is believed to be caused by such a mutated strain of the SIV. The current outbreak is called swine flu only because one of the surface proteins of the tested virus is similar to the one which infects pigs. It is still unknown if this is currently infecting pigs though it's clearly spreading among people, leading the World Health Organization to raise the Phase 4 pandemic alert. This new strain responsible for the outbreak has been found to be a re-assortment of strains of the influenza A virus subtype H1N1. These strains are separately endemic in humans and in swine.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Tamiflu (oseltamivir) and Relenza (zanamivir) would help in treatment and prevention. Antiviral drugs, if started within two days of the manifestation of symptoms, succeed in reducing the severity of the symptoms, preventing further complications, and hastening cure. The most effective method of prevention is to wash hands frequently with soap or with a foam or alcohol-based gel hand wash that helps wipe away bacteria and viruses. Vaccines against the 2009 H1N1 strain outbreak are in the development stage and are expected to be ready by June 2009.

Why Fertility Doctors Now Recommend Acupuncture

Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) includes acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine. It has successfully treated infertility, gynecological, male factor, and many other illnesses and health problems facing couples for 5,000 years. Western medicine as we know it is just over 200 years old. TCM protocols differ from the procedures used in Western medicine-but their use offers hope for many for whom Western medicine is trying to or who has not yet helped. Several studies prove that your chances of conception, pregnancy and take home baby rates are increased when using acupuncture wherever you are trying naturally or in conjunction with IUI or IVF. Some reports indicate a 40-60% improvement rate when used concurrently. Unexplained infertility is increasing rapidly for both men and women. The benefits of acupuncture in treating infertility have proven to be significant and many couples may be helped sooner on this journey by exploring TCM.

So how does it work?

TCM treats holistically, balancing, nourishing and supporting your blood and organ systems. A balanced body system is necessary for a male to have an adequate sperm count, motility and morphology and for a woman to make good follicles, good eggs, sufficient uterine lining and to help prevent miscarriage. Our body becomes "out of sync" with chronic stress, overwork, poor nutrition, long term use of medicines, exposure to toxins and chemicals, smoking, alcohol use, etc. Your body is like a "circuit board connecting with your brain". Life is busy and stressful for most of us … so it is easy for our bodies to "shut down" and be unbalanced. It is like some of the switches on our "circuit board" have been turned off creating blockages causing physical or emotional imbalances. TCM restores balance and blood flow and opens up our "circuit boards" so that the body better functions without stress or duress. The body and endocrine system feel safe and in better working order to conceive, carry and deliver!

TCM allows your body to function more efficiently and optimally and can:

• Improve and support your immune system.
• Reduce stress, anxiety, insomnia, fatigue and worry.
• Create calmness and a more "grounded" feeling.
• Reduce toxic effects of medicines.
• Regulate the menstrual cycle.
• Help normalize reproductive hormones.
• Promote blood blow to the uterus and ovaries.
• Improve ovarian function which includes substance and egg quantity and quality.
• Reduce uterine contractions after IVF assisting implantation.
• Reduce miscarriage and recurrent pregnancy loss (RPL).
• Assist in thickening the uterine lining.
• Improve sperm count, motility and morphology.

Does it hurt?
No, acupuncture is a very gentle and relaxing protocol! The needles are very thin -hairline. You may feel a tiny pinch or nothing. It is safe with little or no side effects. In fact, TCM practitioners treat children. Women can be treated all the way through pregnancy in high risk cases, or to counter the effects of morning sickness, fatigue, headaches, edema, back pain, etc.

What can I expect at my first visit?

The acupuncturist will go through your medical history and discuss your signs and symptoms. They look at your tongue and check your pulse and explain how they can best help you based on your symptoms and your fertility goals. Nutrition, diet and lifestyle are also important part of becoming pregnant and are discussed. She will explain an appropriate treatment plan for you. TCM practitioners work closely with fertility specialists and are an important part of an IUI or IVF cycle.

If you have unexplained infertility, male factor issues, are trying naturally or have had a poor response to IVF do not be discouraged – conception, pregnancy and delivery is a journey and TCM is here to help each and everyone of you succeed.

"He, who has health, has hope, and he who has hope, has everything." –Chinese Proverb