Circulatory disorders are quite common in middle-aged and elderly folk. Hypertension is one of them. It is caused by cholesterol plaque deposits along the walls of the arteries, making them harden and constrict.
Because the arteries are constricted, the blood exerts great force against the walls of the blood vessels, causing the blood pressure to rise. The vessels lose their elasticity and springiness. So if the body needs more energy such as walking up stairs or exercising, it can be difficult to get it. Hardening of the arteries is another consequence because the arteries narrow due to these same fatty deposits. Buergers disease, common to those who smoke, is a chronic inflammation of the veins and arteries in the lower extremities. Raynauds disease is marked by constriction and spasm of the blood vessels in the extremities.
This very often includes the fingers, toes and tip of the nose. This disease if left untreated can lead to gangrene. Varicose Veins. Poor circulation in legs can result from varicose veins. These develop because of a loss of elasticity in the walls of the veins. The resultant reduced blood circulation then compounds the problem and makes the varicose veins gradually worse. These circulatory problems are quite common due to genetics or bad food or insufficient exercise or higher stress levels etc. This problem can be quite common in a single leg but more often in both legs.
A cold or the flu can trigger an asthma attack. Here’s why — and how to keep your sneeze from turning into a wheeze.
Respiratory infections, such as colds and the flu, are one of the most common causes of asthma flare-ups, especially in young children. A stuffy nose, sore throat, cough, fever, or other signs and symptoms caused by a cold or flu (influenza) virus can be a nuisance. But if you have asthma, even a minor respiratory infection can cause major problems. Asthma signs and symptoms, such as wheezing and chest tightness, may not respond as well to regular asthma medications. Also, asthma symptoms caused by a respiratory infection may last for several days to weeks.
There’s no sure way to keep yourself or your child from getting a cold or the flu. But taking steps to avoid getting sick — and taking the right steps when you do — can help.
Preventing colds and the flu
Take these steps to help you avoid getting sick: -Get an annual flu shot unless your doctor recommends against it. Most adults and children older than 6 months old should get a flu vaccination every year. -Ask your doctor if you need a pneumonia vaccination. Most people need to get this vaccination only one time, but in some cases a booster shot is needed. -Avoid contact with anyone who’s sick. Germs that cause respiratory infections are easily passed from person to person. -Wash your hands often. This kills the germs that can cause respiratory infections. Carry a bottle of hand sanitizer to kill germs while you’re on the go. -Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. These are the points where germs that can make you sick enter your body. -Stay in shape. Regular exercise may help you avoid getting sick.
Although fatty liver can be caused by regularly drinking too many alcoholic beverages, the high prevalence of fatty liver in modern society is unrelated to alcohol consumption, and it can progress to a metabolic disorder called nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, or NAFLD. Fatty liver is an excessive accumulation of triglycerides and cholesterol in your liver. The amount of cholesterol in your diet has very little bearing on the development of fatty liver, but a fatty liver can raise the triglyceride and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels in your blood. Estimates indicate that 20 to 30 percent of the adult population in the United States may have a fatty liver or NAFLD. The disorder can begin to develop in early childhood. If you have Type 2 diabetes, there is a 50 percent chance that you have too much fat in your liver, and if you are overweight with excess fat around your waist, your likelihood of having fatty liver is 75 percent. The best way to detect fatty liver is through a liver biopsy. Fatty liver is often associated with excess belly fat, also called abdominal fat. Triglycerides in your abdominal fatty tissues can be recycled to your liver and contribute to fat content. People with fatty liver usually have high blood triglycerides, low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol and elevated levels of small, dense LDLs and LDL cholesterol. Too much liver fat and this type of blood lipid profile is strongly associated with Type 2 diabetes, and it is a feature of insulin resistance.
According to the Center for Disease Control, we are eating ourselves into a diabetes epidemic. The International Diabetes Foundation (IDF) says that, “Diabetes and obesity are the biggest public health challenge of the 21st century.” The supporting statistics they cite are staggering:
The obesity rate climbed from 1999 from 12 percent to almost 20 percent.
Last year the diabetes and obesity rates increased 6 percent and 57 percent.
Every three seconds, someone is diagnosed with diabetes.
Of the children born in 2000, one in three will eventually develop diabetes. Although both diabetes and obesity risk factors are often associated with race, age, and family history, it’s becoming more and more clear that the conveniences of modern life also contribute to the development of both diseases. For example, sedentary lifestyles (reduced physical activity) and the popularity of high fat, high energy diets (think “Super Size Me”) and convenient foods are known to lead to obesity – but do they also cause diabetes?
It is not uncommon for men with ED to feel angry, frustrated, sad, or even unsure of them self. Such feelings, if not dealt with, can eventually lead to depression.
Depression that accompanies ED is treatable. The first step in overcoming depression is to be honest with yourself, your partner, and your doctor. After depression has been brought out into the open, coping with it will be easier and less stressful. Recognizing Depression- Depression is an illness marked by persistent sadness, feelings of hopelessness, and a pessimistic outlook.
The most common symptoms of depression include: -Low self-esteem -Loss of interest in formerly pleasurable activities -Fatigue -Changes in appetite -Sleep disturbances
Depression affects the way one feels about oneself and the way one thinks about life. People who are depressed cannot simply “pull themselves together” and get better. Without treatment, symptoms of depression can last indefinitely. Appropriate treatment, however, can help most people who suffer from depression get back on track.
Not all people who have heart attacks experience the same symptoms or experience them to the same degree. Many heart attacks aren’t as dramatic as the ones you’ve seen on TV. Some people have no symptoms at all, while for others, the first sign may be sudden cardiac arrest. Still, the more signs and symptoms you have, the greater the likelihood that you may be having a heart attack. The severity of heart attack symptoms can vary too. Some people have mild pain, while others experience severe pain. A heart attack can occur anytime— at work or play, while you’re resting, or while you’re in motion. Some heart attacks strike suddenly, but many people who experience a heart attack have warning signs and symptoms hours, days or weeks in advance. The earliest warning of a heart attack may be recurrent chest pain (angina) that’s triggered by exertion and relieved by rest. Angina is caused by a temporary decrease in blood flow to the heart. Many people confuse a heart attack with a condition in which your heart suddenly stops (sudden cardiac arrest). Sudden cardiac arrest occurs when an electrical disturbance in your heart disrupts its pumping action and causes blood to stop flowing to the rest of your body. A heart attack can cause cardiac arrest, but it’s not the only cause of cardiac arrest.
Watch for these signs and symptoms if you think you or someone else may be having a stroke. Note when your signs and symptoms begin, because the length of time they have been present may guide your treatment decisions. -Trouble with walking. You may stumble or experience sudden dizziness, loss of balance or loss of coordination. -Trouble with speaking and understanding. You may experience confusion. You may slur your words or have difficulty understanding speech. -Paralysis or numbness of the face, arm or leg. You may develop sudden numbness, weakness or paralysis in your face, arm or leg, especially on one side of your body. Try to raise both your arms over your head at the same time. If one arm begins to fall, you may be having a stroke. Similarly, one side of your mouth may droop when you try to smile. -Trouble with seeing in one or both eyes. You may suddenly have blurred or blackened vision in one or both eyes, or you may see double. -Headache. A sudden, severe headache, which may be accompanied by vomiting, dizziness or altered consciousness, may indicate you’re having a stroke. When to see a doctor- Seek immediate medical attention if you notice any signs or symptoms of a stroke, even if they seem to fluctuate or disappear. Call 911 or your local emergency number right away. Every minute counts. Don’t wait to see if symptoms go away. The longer a stroke goes untreated, the greater the potential for brain damage and disability. To maximize the effectiveness of evaluation and treatment, you’ll need to be treated at a hospital within three hours after your first symptoms appeared. If you’re with someone you suspect is having a stroke, watch the person carefully while waiting for emergency assistance.
Angioplasty is a widely used procedure that is performed for patients with cardiovascular disease. The procedure involves inserting a medical device, such as a balloon, into your heart to open the heart artery narrowed by plaque. It may involve placement of a stent (mesh tube) to help keep the vessel open. The stent may be coated with medicine.
Heart disease treated with angioplasty usually provides rapid relief of symptoms such as chest pain and/or shortness of breath. The majority of patients return to regular life activities without chest pain in a short time.
Angioplasty is used to: -Restore blood flow to the affected area of the heart by treating narrowed coronary arteries -Provide prompt relief of chest pain and/or shortness of breath after procedure -Potentially reduce the risk of heart attack and prolong life compared to no treatment Coronary Stents Stents are tiny, expandable tubes made of metal mesh designed to open a blood vessel that is blocked by plaque. The angioplasty procedure opens the artery, and stents are placed and expanded to fit the size, shape and bend of the artery. The stent remains in the artery after the procedure to help keep the artery open. Over time, the artery wall heals around the stent.
There are two kinds of coronary artery stents. -Bare-metal stents help keep the cleared artery open after angioplasty by supporting the artery wall after angioplasty. Bare-metal stents help to prevent the artery from re-narrowing. -Photo of TAXUS Express Drug-Eluting StentDrug-coated stents are bare-metal stents with a special drug coating. These stents are also called drug-eluting stents, or DES. DES have the same support benefits as a bare-metal stent for keeping the artery open after angioplasty. In addition, the stent releases a drug over time to further reduce the chance of re-blockage.
Arteries commonly become blocked again about 7% of the time with drug-coated stents, compared to 25% for bare-metal stents.¹
Also called “night terrors”, these episodes are characterized by extreme terror and a temporary inability to attain full consciousness. The person may abruptly exhibit behaviors of fear, panic, confusion, or an apparent desire to escape. There is no response to soothing from others. They may experience gasping, moaning or screaming. However, the person is not fully awake, and once the episode passes, often returns to normal sleep without ever fully waking up. In most cases, there is no recollection of the episode in the morning.
Like sleepwalking, night terror episodes usually occur during NREM delta (slow wave) sleep. They are most likely to occur during the first part of the night. The timing of the events helps differentiate the episodes from nightmares, which occur during the last third of the sleep period.
While sleep terrors are more common in children, they can occur at any age. Research has shown that a predisposition to night terrors may be hereditary. Emotional stress during the day, fatigue or an irregular routine are thought to trigger episodes. Ensuring a child has the proper amount of sleep, as well as addressing any daytime stresses, will help reduce terrors.
The amount of radiation in a typical nuclear imaging procedure is comparable with what you would receive during a diagnostic x-ray. However, the potential benefit of a nuclear medicine exam far outweighs the risk.
Radiation risk varies according to your size, age, sex, body structure and make up, as well as the dose of radioactive tracer needed to complete the exam. The greatest potential risk from a procedure using radiation is the development of cancer. However, there is no evidence that a diagnostic medical procedure, like a nuclear medicine exam, has ever caused cancer. The radiation exposure during a nuclear medicine exam is so small, it can only be inferred that the exam might lead to the development of cancer.