Monthly Archives: July 2011

San Francisco Circumcision Ban Struck From Ballot

A San Francisco judge has struck a proposed male circumcision ban from a November ballot, ruling that the city cannot regulate medical procedure and citing religious freedom protections

The ruling was applauded by opponents of the proposed ban, who attacked it as anti-Semitic and anti-Muslim.

In May, advocates of a ban gathered enough voter signatures to put the measure on the city’s ballot.

They described the sacred rite for Jews and Muslims as “genital mutilation”.

The measure, which qualified in May for a spot on the ballot, would have made circumcision of a minor boy punishable by up to a year in jail and a $1,000 (£612) fine.

The US federal government already bans female circumcision.

Jewish and Muslim groups said the proposal was an assault on their ancient religious practice and likened the proposal to circumcision bans in the Soviet Union.

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Source :BBC NEWS : 28 July 2011

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‘Super Antibody’ Fights Off Flu

The first antibody which can fight all types of the influenza A virus has been discovered, researchers claim.

Experiments on flu-infected mice, published in Science Express, showed the antibody could be used as an “emergency treatment“.

It is hoped the development will lead to a “universal vaccine” – currently a new jab has to be made for each winter as viruses change.

Virologists described the finding as a “good step forward”.

Many research groups around the world are trying to develop a universal vaccine. They need to attack something common to all influenza which does not change or mutate.

It is verymuch suggested that  some people who had swine flu may develop ‘super immunity’ to other infections.

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Source : BBC News,July 29,2011

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Onycholysis

Definition:
Onycholysis is a diseases whose symptoms appear as the separation of the nail plate from the nail bed on your fingers and toes. But that is not the full definition. The separation must be gradual and must be painless. Onycholysis can happen due to a number of reasons including trauma, onychomycosis or fungal infection in the nails. Onycholysis is generally seen in adulthood and might be symptomatic of other skin diseases or infections, allergic contact to some compounds like acrylic nail products, consequence of an injury, or hyperactive thyroid glands.

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Click to see the picture

Onycholysis disease is not restricted to any one sex but generally women are more prone to it specially those who keep long fingernails. Actually long fingernails result in its tip being hit against hard objects repeatedly. It is also seen that the affected nails don’t show any skin inflammation and the finger nail remains firm and smooth. It is simply because onycholysis is not a disease of the nails tissue matrix.

 

Symptoms:
It is actually very easy to spot Onycholysis nail disease. You’ll find that the nail lifts itself from its bed and there is a gap between the pink portion of the nail and the white outside edge of the finger nail.
Click to see the picture
One way of determining Onycholysis has set in to check for signs of discoloration underneath the nail since this may occur as a result of secondary infection. The painless and spontaneous separation of the nail plate starts at the distal free margin and gradually progresses proximally. That actually signifies secondary infection making the situation more serious. Secondary infections might also result in the deformation of the shape of the nail plate and appearance of pits and indentations in the nail surface.
Larger portion of the nail may become opaque, get whitened or discolored to yellow or green and this calls for medical attention.

Causes:
*Idiopathic
*Trauma e.g. excessive manicuring
*Infection: especially fungal
*Skin disease: psoriasis, dermatitis
*Impaired peripheral circulation e.g. Raynaud’s
*Systemic disease: hyper- and hypothyroidism, reactive arthritis

Diagnosis:
Diagnosing Onycholysis is simple and straight forward. To diagnose Onycholysis you must examine closely your fingernails and the toenails for nail plate separation, opacity and discoloration and effects the disease might have on the peripheral skin surrounding your nails and toes. If you feel that something is wrong but can’t make a clear diagnostic, you need to go see your doctor or physician who would look for and diagnose for other symptoms and search for other symptomatic signs of the disease such as skin appearance around your nails or the appearance of indentations in the surface or the color and shape of the nails. Doctors search for sign of rashes on the skin or even check for related symptoms linked to thyroid problems. If the diagnostic suspicious of your doctor leans towards fungal infection, some tissues from beneath your nail plate might be scraped out for further testing.

Treatment:

Treatment usually involves tackling the underlying cause, such as a fungal infection.

Nail changes aren’t usually permanent, but they can take many months to resolve, even after treatment.
*Some of the remedial measures one can take for Onycholysis at home include regular trimming of nails to ensure they remain short and clean (manageable too) and using a skin softening hand cream to nourish the nails and hands.
*If Onycholysis has set in due to nail biting, picking or tearing, the person can consider seeking psychological counseling to get the necessary encouragement and guidance to underlying problems to stop this behavior.
*Persons suffering from Onycholysis should wear light cotton gloves under vinyl gloves for wet work and avoid keeping their hands immersed for prolonged periods in water.


*If Onycholysis has set in on the feet, one should avoid wearing tight shoes and trim the nails straight across the top only.

Prevention:
What you can do is to take some preventive steps to avoid the occurrence of onycholysis. You can start with avoiding exposure to harsh chemicals like nail polish remover. You would do well to wear cotton gloves or rubber gloves while immersing your nails in water repeatedly. Nails expand when it is moisten and shrinks when it dries. And yes, clip your nails at the affected portion and try to keep your nails short to avoid further trauma from getting damaged everyday.

Disclaimer: This information is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advise or help. It is always best to consult with a Physician about serious health concerns. This information is in no way intended to diagnose or prescribe remedies.This is purely for educational purpose

Resources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Onycholysis

http://www.fuelthemind.com/health/health/Onycholysis_nail_disease.html

http://beautytips.ygoy.com/nail-disorders/onycholysis.php

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/imagepages/2010.htm

http://www.bbc.co.uk/health/physical_health/conditions/onycholysis1.shtml

http://www.primehealthchannel.com/onycholysis-definition-causes-symptoms-pictures-and-treatment.html

http://missinglink.ucsf.edu/lm/DermatologyGlossary/img/Dermatology%20Glossary/Glossary%20Clinical%20Images/Onycholysis-18.jpg

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Torticollis

Alternative Names : Wry neck; Loxia

Definition:
Torticollis is a twisted neck in which the head is tipped to one side, while the chin is turned to the other.It is a stiff neck associated with muscle spasm, classically causing lateral flexion contracture of the cervical spine musculature. The muscles affected are principally those supplied by the spinal accessory nerve.

Symptoms:
•Limited range of motion of the head
•Headache
•Head tremor
•Neck pain
•Shoulder is higher on one side of the body
•Stiffness of neck muscles
•Swelling of the neck muscles (possibly present at birth)

Diagnosis:
Evaluation of a child with torticollis begins with history taking to determine circumstances surrounding birth and any possibility of trauma or associated symptoms. Physical examination reveals decreased rotation and bending to the side opposite from the affected muscle. Some say that congenital cases more often involve the right side, but there is not complete agreement about this in published studies. Evaluation should include a thorough neurologic examination, and the possibility of associated conditions such as developmental dysplasia of the hip and clubfoot should be examined. Radiographs of the cervical spine should be obtained to rule out obvious bony abnormality, and MRI should be considered if there is concern about structural problems or other conditions.

Evaluation by an ophthalmologist should be considered in children to ensure that the torticollis is not caused by vision problems (IV cranial nerve palsy, nystagmus-associated “null position,” etc.). Most cases in infants respond well to physical therapy. Other causes should be treated as noted above.

Causes & Treatment:
Torticollis can be congenital or may be acquired.

Congenital muscular torticollis:
The etiology of congenital muscular torticollis is unclear. Birth trauma or intrauterine malposition is also considered to cause damage to the sternocleidomastoid muscle in the neck. This results in a shortening or excessive contraction of the sternocleidomastoid muscle, often with limited range of motion in both rotation and lateral bending. The head is typically tilted in lateral bending toward the affected muscle and rotated toward the opposite side. The condition may be caused by scars, disease of cervical vertebrae, adenitis, tonsillitis, rheumatism, enlarged cervical glands, retropharyngeal abscess, or cerebellar tumors. It may be spasmodic (clonic) or permanent (tonic). The latter type may be due to Pott’s Disease (tuberculosis of the spine).

The reported incidence of congenital torticollis is 0.3-2.0 %. Sometimes a mass (a sternocleidomastoid tumor) in the affected muscle may be noted, this appears at the age of two to four weeks, it disappears gradually, but sometimes the muscle becomes fibrotic. It is likely to disappear within the first five to eight months of life.

The condition is treated initially with physical therapy, with stretching to correct the tightness, strengthening exercises to achieve muscular balance, handling to stimulate symmetry. A TOT Collar is sometimes used. About 5–10% require “surgical release” of the muscle if stretching fails.

Infants with torticollis have a higher risk for plagiocephaly. Altering the head position and using a pillow when supine helps as does giving a lot of tummy time when awake.

Other less common causes such as tumors, infections, ophthalmologic problems and other abnormalities should be ruled out. For example, ocular torticollis due to cranial nerve IV palsy should not be treated with physical therapy. In this situation, the torticollis is a neurological adaptation designed to maintain binocularity. Treatment should be targeted at the extraocular muscle imbalance.

In general, if torticollis is not corrected facial asymmetry can develop.  Head position should be corrected before adulthood (to about the age of 18 there can be improvement). Younger children show the best results.

Congenital torticollis develops in the infant but can be diagnosed at older ages, even in adults who were missed as infants/children.

The word torticollis means wry neck: Acquired torticollis is not the same as congenital torticollis. All ages can suffer from acquired torticollis.

TREATMENT:
Common treatments  might involve a multi-phase process:

1.Low-impact exercise to increase strong form neck stability
2.Manipulation of the neck by a chiropractor, physical therapist, or D.O.†
3.Extended heat application.
4.Repetitive shiatsu massage.

†An Osteopathic Physician (D.O.) may choose to use Cranial techniques to properly position the occipital condyles – thereby relieving compression of cranial nerve XI in children with Torticollis. This is an example of Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment.

Acquired torticollis:
Acquired torticollis occurs because of another problem and usually presents in previously normal children and adults.

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*A self-limiting spontaneously occurring form of torticollis with one or more painful neck muscles is by far the most common (‘stiff neck’) and will pass spontaneously in 1–4 weeks. Usually the sternocleidomastoid muscle or the trapezius muscle is involved. Sometimes draughts, colds or unusual postures are implicated; however in many cases no clear cause is found. These episodes are rarely seen by doctors other than a family physician.

*Trauma to the neck can cause atlantoaxial rotatory subluxation, in which the two vertebrae closest to the skull slide with respect to each other, tearing stabilizing ligaments; this condition is treated with traction to reduce the subluxation, followed by bracing or casting until the ligamentous injury heals.

*Tumors of the skull base (posterior fossa tumors) can compress the nerve supply to the neck and cause torticollis, and these problems must be treated surgically.

*Infections in the posterior pharynx can irritate the nerves supplying the neck muscles and cause torticollis, and these infections may be treated with antibiotics if they are not too severe, but could require surgical debridement in intractable cases.

*Ear infections and surgical removal of the adenoids can cause an entity known as Grisel’s syndrome, a subluxation of the upper cervical joints, mostly the atlantoaxial joint, due to inflammatory laxity of the ligaments caused by an infection. This bridge must either be broken through manipulation of the neck, or surgically resected.

*The use of certain drugs, such as antipsychotics, can cause torticollis.

*Antiemetics – Neuroleptic Class – Phenothiazines

There are many other rare causes of torticollis.

Spasmodic torticollis:
Torticollis with recurrent but transient contraction of the muscles of the neck and esp. of the sternocleidomastoid. “intermittent torticollis . “cervical dystonia”

TREATMENT: Botulinum toxin has been used to inhibit the spastic contractions of the affected muscles.

In animals:


The condition can also occur in animals, usually as a result of an inner ear infection but sometimes as a result of an injury. It is seen largely in domestic rodents and rabbits, but may also appear in dogs and other different animals.

Possible ComplicationsComplications may include:

•Muscle swelling due to constant tension
•Neurological symptoms due to compressed nerve roots

Prognosis:
The condition may be easier to correct in infants and children. If the condition becomes chronic, numbness and tingling may develop as nerve roots become compressed in the neck.

The muscle itself may become large (hypertrophic) due to constant stimulation and exercise.

Botulinum toxin injections often provide substantial relief.

Disclaimer: This information is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advise or help. It is always best to consult with a Physician about serious health concerns. This information is in no way intended to diagnose or prescribe remedies.This is purely for educational purpose

Resources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Torticollis

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000749.htm

http://www.umm.edu/imagepages/19090.htm

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Sternocleidomastoideus.png

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Cloves

Dried cloves

Dried cloves (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Botanical Name : Syzigium aromaticum
Family: Myrtaceae
Genus: Syzygium
Species: S. aromaticum
Kingdom: Plantae
Phylum: Angiosperms
Order: Myrtales

Synonyms:Eugenia Caryophyllata

Common Names: Indian name Laung.In Urdu it is called as ‘Laong’. In Kerala state (India) it is called ‘Grampoo’ in Malayalam. In Hindi, it’s called ‘Lavang’ and many Indian languages have names similar to it, e.g. in Marathi, it is called as “Lavang”, whereas In Telugu, it is called ‘Lavangam’, plural ‘Lavangalu’ . In Kannada, it is called ‘Lavanga’. In Sinhala it is called ‘Karabu Nati. The Tamil language uses both the native  (kirambu) and also the Sanskrit-derived(lavangam).

In Vietnam, it is called ?inh huong. In Indonesia it is called cengkeh or cengkih.Cloves are also known as ‘giroflier’ in French; ‘Gewürznelkenbaum’ in German; ‘cravo-da-Índia’, ‘cravo-das-molucas’, and ‘cravo-de-doce’ in Portuguese; and ‘árbol del clavo’, ‘clavero giroflé’, and ‘clavo de olor’ in Spanish.

Habitat : Cloves are  native to the Spice Islands and the Philippines but also grown in India, Sumatra, Jamaica, the West Indies, Brazil, and other tropical areas.

Description:
The clove is an evergreen tree, 15 to 30 feet tall. It has opposite, ovate leaves more than 5 inches long; and its flowers, when allowed to develop, are red and white, bell-shaped, and grow in terminal clusters. The familiar clove used in the kitchen is the dried flower bud. The fruit is a one- or two-seeded berry.

You may click to see the pictures of plant  
The clove tree is endemic in the North Moluccas (Indonesia) and was of old cultivated on the islands of Ternate, Tidore, Bacan and the West coast of Halmahera. The Dutch extended cultivation to several other islands in the Moluccas, but only after the end of the Dutch monopoly (18.th century), clove trees were introduced to other countries

Uses:
Cloves can be used in cooking either whole or in a ground form, but as they are extremely strong, they are used sparingly.

Cloves have historically been used in Indian cuisine (both North Indian and South Indian). In North Indian cuisine, it is used in almost all rich or spicy dishes as an ingredient of a mix named garam masala, along with other spices, although it is not an everyday ingredient for home cuisine, nor is it used in summer very often. In the Maharashtra region of India it is used sparingly for sweet or spicy dishes, but rarely in everyday cuisine. In Ayurvedic medicine it is considered to have the effect of increasing heat in system, hence the difference of usage by region and season. In south Indian cuisine, it is used extensively in biryani along with “cloves dish” (similar to pilaf, but with the addition of other spices), and it is normally added whole to enhance the presentation and flavor of the rice.

Dried cloves are also a key ingredient in Indian masala chai, spiced tea, a special variation of tea popular in some regions, notably Gujarat. In the US, it is often sold under the name of “chai” or “chai tea”, as a way of differentiating it from other types of teas sold in the US.

In Mexican cuisine, cloves are best known as ‘clavos de olor’, and often used together with cumin and cinnamon.

In Vietnamese cuisine, cloves are often used to season the broth of Pho.

Due to the Indonesian influence, the use of cloves is widespread in the Netherlands. Cloves are used in cheeses, often in combination with cumin. Cloves are an essential ingredient for making Dutch speculaas. Furthermore, cloves are used in traditional Dutch stews like hachee.

Non-culinary uses:
The spice is used in a type of cigarette called kretek in Indonesia. Kreteks have been smoked throughout Europe, Asia and the United States. In 2009, clove cigarettes (as well as fruit and candy flavored cigarettes) were outlawed in the US. However, they are still sold in similar form, re-labeled as “filtered clove cigars.”

Cloves are also an important incense material in Chinese and Japanese culture. And clove essence is commonly used in the production of many perfumes.

During Christmas, it is a tradition in some European countries to make pomanders from cloves and oranges to hang around the house. This spreads a nice scent throughout the house and acts as holiday decorations.

Cloves are often used as incense in the Jewish practice called Havdala

Clove oil anesthesia and overdose is considered a humane method for euthanizing fish.

Constituents:
Eugenol comprises 72-90% of the essential oil extracted from cloves, and is the compound most responsible for the cloves’ aroma. Other important essential oil constituents of clove oil include acetyl eugenol, beta-caryophyllene and vanillin; crategolic acid; tannins, gallotannic acid, methyl salicylate (painkiller); the flavonoids eugenin, kaempferol, rhamnetin, and eugenitin; triterpenoids like oleanolic acid, stigmasterol and campesterol; and several sesquiterpenes.

Eugenol has pronounced antiseptic and anaesthetic properties. Of the dried buds, 15 – 20 percent is essential oils, and the majority of this is eugenol. A kilogram (2.2 lbs) of dried buds yields approximately 150 ml (1/4 of pint) of eugenol.

Eugenol can be toxic in relatively small quantities—as low as 5 ml.

Medicinal Uses:
Traditional Chinese physicians have long used the herb to treat indigestion, diarrhea, hernia, and ringworm, as well as athlete’s foot and other fungal infections.  India’s traditional Ayurvedic healers have used clove since ancient times to treat respiratory and digestive ailments.  America’s 19th century Eclectic physicians used clove to treat digestive complaints and added it to bitter herb-medicine preparations to make them more palatable.  The Eclectics were also the first to extract clove oil from the herbal buds. It has antiseptic, stimulant, stomachic and digestive properties.  As an anti-infectant, cloves are effective against coli bacilli, streptococci, staphylococci, pneumococci and as an antimycotic.  The oil, too, is used in dentistry for its antiseptic and analgesic properties, and, like the whole cloves and powdered cloves, for local pain-relieving purposes.  Eugenol is a local anesthetic used in dental fillings and cements; a rubifacient and a carminative.  It is also an irritant and an allergic sensitizer.      Besides all their other uses, cloves can be used to treat acne, skin ulcers, sores, and styes.  They also make a potent mosquito and moth repellent which is where the clove studded orange pomander comes from.

Traditional medicinal uses:
Cloves are used in Indian Ayurvedic medicine, Chinese medicine, and western herbalism and dentistry, where the essential oil is used as an anodyne (painkiller) for dental emergencies. Cloves are used as a carminative, to increase hydrochloric acid in the stomach and to improve peristalsis. Cloves are also said to be a natural anthelmintic. The essential oil is used in aromatherapy when stimulation and warming are needed, especially for digestive problems. Topical application over the stomach or abdomen are said to warm the digestive tract. Clove oil, applied to a cavity in a decayed tooth, also relieves toothache. It also helps to decrease infection in the teeth due to its antiseptic properties.

In Chinese medicine cloves or ding xiang are considered acrid, warm and aromatic, entering the kidney, spleen and stomach meridians, and are notable in their ability to warm the middle, direct stomach qi downward, to treat hiccough and to fortify the kidney yang. Because the herb is so warming it is contraindicated in any persons with fire symptoms and according to classical sources should not be used for anything except cold from yang deficiency. As such it is used in formulas for impotence or clear vaginal discharge from yang deficiency, for morning sickness together with ginseng and patchouli, or for vomiting and diarrhea due to spleen and stomach coldness. This would translate to hypochlorhydria. Clove oil is used in various skin disorders like acne, pimples etc. It is also used in severe burns, skin irritations and to reduce the sensitiveness of skin.

Cloves may be used internally as a tea and topically as an oil for hypotonic muscles, including for multiple sclerosis. This is also found in Tibetan medicine. Some recommend avoiding more than occasional use of cloves internally in the presence of pitta inflammation such as is found in acute flares of autoimmune diseases.

In West Africa, the Yorubas use cloves infused in water as a treatment for stomach upsets, vomiting and diarrhea. The infusion is called Ogun Jedi-jedi.

Western studies have supported the use of cloves and clove oil for dental pain. However, studies to determine its effectiveness for fever reduction, as a mosquito repellent and to prevent premature ejaculation have been inconclusive. Clove may reduce blood sugar levels.

Tellimagrandin II is an ellagitannin found in S. aromaticum with anti-herpesvirus properties.

The buds have anti-oxidant properties

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clove

http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_C.htm

http://www.ifood.tv/blog/how-to-grow-clove-trees

http://www.heartofthedragon.net/Cloves.htm

http://www.ifood.tv/blog/how-to-grow-clove-trees

Trifolium repens

Botanical Name : Trifolium repens
Family: Fabaceae
Subfamily: Faboideae
Genus: Trifolium
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Fabales

Common Name :white clover

Habitat : Trifolium repens native to Europe, North Africa, and West Asia. It has been widely introduced worldwide as a pasture crop, and is now also common in most grassy areas of North America and New Zealand. Also grown in spring and summer.

Description:
It is a herbaceous, perennial plant. It is low growing, with heads of whitish flowers, often with a tinge of pink or cream that may come on with the aging of the plant. The heads are generally 1.5–2 cm wide, and are at the end of 7 cm peduncles or flower stalks. The leaves, which by themselves form the symbol known as shamrock, are trifoliolate, smooth, elliptic to egg-shaped and long-petioled. The stems function as stolons, so white clover often forms mats, with the stems creeping as much as 18 cm a year, and rooting at the nodes.

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Culinary uses:
Besides making an excellent forage crop for livestock, clovers are a valuable survival food: they are high in proteins, widespread, and abundant. The fresh plants have been used for centuries as additives to salads and other meals consisting of leafy vegetables.

They are not easy for humans to digest raw, however, but this is easily fixed by boiling the harvested plants for 5–10 minutes. Dried flowerheads and seedpods can also be ground up into a nutritious flour and mixed with other foods, or can be steeped into a tisane. White clover flour is sometimes sprinkled onto cooked foods such as boiled rice.

When used in soups, the leaves are often harvested before the plant flowers. The roots are also edible, although they are most often cooked firsthand.

Medicinal uses:
The flower heads are the medicinally active parts.  When dry they have a honey-like fragrance and a slightly astringent taste.  An infusion is used to treat gastritis, enteritis, severe diarrhea and rheumatic pains.  It is also used as an inhalant for respiratory infections. Herbal doctors still employ preparations of white clover to ward off mumps.  An old fashioned remedy to cleanse the system. A blood purifier, especially in boils, ulcers and other skin diseases. A strong tea of white clover blossoms is very healing to sores when applied externally. Similar to red clover in use.  An infusion has been used in the treatment of coughs, colds, fevers and leucorrhea. A tincture of the leaves is applied as an ointment to gout. An infusion of the flowers has been used as an eyewash.

Trifolium repens has been used as minor folk medicine by the Cherokee, Iroquois, Mohegan and other Native American tribes for centuries.

The Cherokee, for instance, used an infusion of the plant to treat fevers as well as Bright’s disease. The Delaware and Algonkian natives used the same infusion, but as a treatment for coughing and the common cold.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trifolium_repens

http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_C.htm

https://s10.lite.msu.edu/res/msu/botonl/b_online/thome/band3/tafel_115_small.jpg

http://www.robsplants.com/plants/TrifoRepen

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Prairie Clover

Botanical Name : Dalea purpurea
Family :Fabaceae – Pea family
Genus: Dalea L. – prairie clover
Species: Dalea purpurea Vent. – purple prairie clover
Kingdom :Plantae – Plants
Subkingdom: Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
Superdivision: Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division :Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class :Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Subclass; Rosidae
Order :Fabales

Common Name : Clover, Velvet Prairie,Prairie Clover

Habitat :Native in Eastern and central United States

Description:
Purple prairie clover is a perennial forb, 8 to 35 inches (20-90 cm) tall, with a woody stem. The numerous leaves are 0.4-1.6 inches (1-4 cm) long, with 3 to 7 leaflets. The inflorescence is a 0.4- to 2.6-inch (1-7 cm) spike located at the ends of the branches. Branches are numerous, usually 3 per stem, but sometimes as many as 10 to 12. The mature purple prairie clover has a coarse, nonfibrous root system with a strong woody taproot that is 5.5 to 6.5 feet (1.7-2.0 m) deep. The taproot gives rise to several minutely branched lateral roots. The fruit is a 1- to-2-seeded pod enclosed in bracts

click to see the pictures…>…....(1).……..(2).….…(3).……….…………………..
Bloom Time: June – August
Bloom Color: Rose/Purple

Medicinal Uses:
This was one of the favored plants of the Native Americans of the prairies. A tea made from the leaves was applied to open wounds and a tea made from the bruised leaves steeped in hot water was used to aid in the healing of wounds as well. Some tribes pulverized the root and made a tea from that powder that was a very healthy drink and a preventative medicine. Some tribes used the entire plant as a prophylactic. Early settlers mixed the bark of the white oak tree and the flowers of this species to make a medicine for diarrhea.  The Chippewa Indians made a decoction of the leaves and blossoms to be used in the treatment of heart problems. The Meskwaki Indians used it to treat diarrhea, and they also made an infusion of the roots in the treatment of measles. The Navajo used the plant to treat pneumonia.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:

http://www.mobot.org/gardeninghelp/plantfinder/plant.asp?code=J970

http://www.prairienursery.com/store/index.php?main_page=product_plant_info&products_id=197

http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_C.htm

http://www.fs.fed.us/database/feis/plants/forb/dalpur/all.html#DISTRIBUTION AND OCCURRENCE

http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=DAPU5&photoID=dapu5_4v.jpg

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Osteomyelitis

Definition:
Osteomyelitis (osteo- derived from the Greek word osteon, meaning bone, myelo- meaning marrow, and -itis meaning inflammation) simply means an infection of the bone or bone marrow. It can be usefully subclassified on the basis of the causative organism (pyogenic bacteria or mycobacteria), the route, duration and anatomic location of the infection.

CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES
It is  is an acute or chronic bone infection and the same can reach a bone by traveling through the bloodstream or spreading from nearby tissue. Osteomyelitis can also begin in the bone itself if an injury exposes the bone to germs.

In children, osteomyelitis most commonly affects the long bones of the legs and upper arm, while adults are more likely to develop osteomyelitis in the bones that make up the spine (vertebrae). People who have diabetes may develop osteomyelitis in their feet if they have foot ulcers.

Once considered an incurable condition, osteomyelitis can be successfully treated today. Most people require surgery to remove parts of the bone that have died — followed by strong antibiotics, often delivered intravenously, typically for at least six weeks.

Symptoms:
Signs and symptoms of osteomyelitis include:

*Fever or chills

*Bone pain

*General discomfort, uneasiness, or ill-feeling (malaise)

*Local swelling, redness, and warmth

*Irritability or lethargy in young children

*Pain in the area of the infection

*Swelling, warmth and redness over the area of the infection

*Excessive sweating

*Low back pain

Sometimes osteomyelitis causes no signs and symptoms or has signs and symptoms that are difficult to distinguish from other problems.

Causes:
Most cases of osteomyelitis are caused by staphylococcus bacteria (more common) or fungi (less common), a type of germ commonly found on the skin or in the nose of even healthy individuals.

*Infection may spread to a bone from infected skin, muscles, or tendons next to the bone, as in osteomyelitis that occurs under a chronic skin ulcer (sore).

*The infection that causes osteomyelitis can also start in another part of the body and spread to the bone through the blood.

*A current or past injury may have made the affected bone more likely to develop the infection. A bone infection can also start after bone surgery, especially if the surgery is done after an injury or if metal rods or plates are placed in the bone.

In children, the long bones are usually affected. In adults, the feet, spine bones (vertebrae), and the hips (pelvis) are most commonly affected.

Risk Factors
*Diabetes

*Hemodialysis

*Injected drug use

*Poor blood supply

*Recent trauma

People who have had their spleen removed are also at higher risk for osteomyelitis.

Complications:
When the bone is infected, pus is produced in the bone, which may result in an abscess. The abscess steals the bone’s blood supply. The lost blood supply can result in a complication called chronic osteomyelitis. This chronic infection can cause symptoms that come and go for years.

Other complications include:
*Need for amputation

*Reduced limb or joint function

*Spread of infection to surrounding tissues or the bloodstream

*Septic arthritis. In some cases, infection within bones can spread into a nearby joint

*Impaired growth. In children, the most common location for osteomyelitis is in the softer areas, called growth plates, at either end of the long bones of the arms and legs. Normal growth may be interrupted in infected bones.

*Skin cancer. If your osteomyelitis has resulted in an open sore that is draining pus, the surrounding skin is at higher risk of developing squamous cell cancer.

Diagnosis:
A physical examination shows bone tenderness and possibly swelling and redness.

Tests may include:

*Blood cultures

*Bone biopsy (which is then cultured)

*Bone scan

*Bone x-ray

*Complete blood count (CBC)

*C-reactive protein (CRP)

*Erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR)

*MRI of the bone

*Needle aspiration of the area around affected bones

Treatment:
Osteomyelitis often requires prolonged antibiotic therapy, with a course lasting a matter of weeks or months. A PICC line or central venous catheter is often placed for this purpose. Osteomyelitis also may require surgical debridement. Severe cases may lead to the loss of a limb. Initial first-line antibiotic choice is determined by the patient’s history and regional differences in common infective organisms. A treatment lasting 42 days is practiced in a number of facilities.  Local and sustained availability of drugs have proven to be more effective in achieving prophylactic and therapeutic outcomes.

In 1875, American artist Thomas Eakins depicted a surgical procedure for osteomyelitis at Jefferson Medical College, in a famous oil painting titled The Gross Clinic.

Prior to the widespread availability and use of antibiotics, blow fly larvae were sometimes deliberately introduced to the wounds to feed on the infected material, effectively scouring them clean.

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy has been shown to be a useful adjunct to the treatment of refractory osteomyelitis.

Open surgery is needed for chronic osteomyelitis, whereby the involucrum is opened and the sequestrum is removed or sometimes saucerization  can be done

Prognosis
With treatment, the outcome for acute osteomyelitis is usually good.

The outlook is worse for those with long-term (chronic) osteomyelitis, even with surgery. Amputation may be needed, especially in those with diabetes or poor blood circulation.

The outlook for those with an infection of an orthopedic prosthesis depends, in part, on:

*The patient’s health

*The type of infection

*Whether the infected prosthesis can be safely removed

Prevention:
Prompt and complete treatment of infections is helpful. People who are at high risk or who have a compromised immune system should see a health care provider promptly if they have signs of an infection anywhere in the body.

Disclaimer: This information is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advise or help. It is always best to consult with a Physician about serious health concerns. This information is in no way intended to diagnose or prescribe remedies.This is purely for educational purpose

Resources:

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000437.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Osteomyelitis

http://www.bbc.co.uk/health/physical_health/conditions/osteomyelitis2.shtml

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/osteomyelitis/DS00759

http://www.medicalook.com/Joint_pain/Osteomyelitis.html

http://www.orthopediatrics.com/docs/Guides/back_pain.html

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Celastrus scandens

Botanical Name : Celastrus scandens
Family: Celastraceae
Genus: Celastrus
Species: C. scandens
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Celastrales

Common Mame :American Bittersweet , Bittersweet or Climbing Bittersweet

Habitat :Celastrus scandens is native to central and eastern North America. It was given the name Bittersweet by European colonists in the 18th century because the fruits resembled the appearance of the fruits of Eurasian Nightshade (Solanum dulcamara), which was also called Bittersweet. Today, American Bittersweet is the accepted common name of C. scandens in large part to distinguish it from an invasive relative, C. orbiculatus (Oriental Bittersweet), from Asia.

Description:
It has a sturdy perennial vine that may have twining, woody stems that are 30 feet (9.1 m) or longer and an inch or more thick at the base. The stems are yellowish-green to brown and wind around other vegetation, sometimes killing saplings by restricting further growth. It has tiny, scentless flowers at the tips of the branches. It has colorful, orange fruits that are the size of a pea.

Celastrus scandens is a  woody and shrubby climber, growing over trees or fences. It has smooth thin leaves 2 to 4 inches long and about half as wide. The small greenish-white  flowers are produced in June in short clusters. The fruit is a round, orange-yellow capsule which opens in autumn, disclosing the scarlet-colored seed pod. The seed capsules remain on the plant well into the cold season and provide food for birds in the winter.It blooms mostly in June

Fruits are eaten by songbirds, ruffed grouse, pheasants, bobwhite and squirrel.  Old fruits are eaten as survival foods by many birds and animals in late winter.   Fruits should NOT be eaten by humans.    Bunches of twisted branchlets, loaded with fruit, are very decorative and the plant is disappearing in many places because of the ruthless methods of market pickers.  Our stock is not from the wild!!

Medicinal Uses:
Climbing bittersweet was employed medicinally by a number of native North American Indian tribes, though it is scarcely used in modern herbalism.  The root is a folk remedy for chronic liver and skin ailments, rheumatism, leukorrhea, dysentery and suppressed menses. A strong compound infusion, usually combined with raspberry leaf tea, has been used to reduce the pain of childbirth. A poultice of the boiled root has been used to treat obstinate sores, skin eruptions etc.  Externally, the bark is used as an ointment on burns, scrapes and skin eruptions.  The bark of the root has been taken internally to induce vomiting, to quiet disturbed people, to treat venereal diseases and to increase urine flow.  As an ointment mixed with grease it has been used to treat skin cancers, tumors, burns and swellings.  A decoction of the root bark has been used to induce menstrual flow and perspiration.  Extracts of the bark are thought to be cardioactive.  Many plants in this genus contain compounds of interest for their antitumor activity.

C. scandens roots were used by Native Americans and pioneers to induce vomiting, to treat venereal disease, and to treat symptoms of tuberculosis.

Known Hazards: Fruits of Celastrus scandens are poisonous to humans when ingested internally, but are favorites of birds.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:

http://www.easywildflowers.com/quality/cel.sca.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Celastrus_scandens

http://countrystoreplants.com/proddetail.php?prod=10233

http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_C.htm

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Schizophragma integrifolium

Botanical Name : Schizophragma integrifolium

Common Name: Chinese Hydrangea Vine

Habitat : Native to Taiwan.

Description:
Schizophragma integrifolium is a charming deciduous vine with fuzzy deep gray-green foliage and large flower heads. Best grown on a large tree, wooden fence or wall, where it can attach itself with aerial roots. Avoid reflected heat from Western exposure.Bloom Time: July-August
•Height: 10 m (32 ft)
•Spread: 4 m (12 ft)

Medicinal Uses:
The root and the climbing stem are carminative and refrigerant. Activates blood circulation, strengthens muscles and bones.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:

http://www.bloomriver.com/home/br2/page_1193

http://www.bluebellnursery.com/catalogue/climbers/Schizophragma/S/3191

http://www.forestfarm.com/product.php?id=4194

http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_C.htm

http://plant-quest.blogspot.com/2011/01/schizophragma-climbs-in-popularity.html

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