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Ichthyosis

Definition:

Ichthyosis (plural ichthyoses) is a heterogeneous family of at least 28, generalized, mostly genetic skin disorders. All types of ichthyosis have dry, thickened, scaly or flaky skin. In many types there is cracked skin, which is said to resemble the scales on a fish; the word ichthyosis comes from the Ancient Greek (ichthys), meaning “fish.” The severity of symptoms can vary enormously, from the mildest types such as ichthyosis vulgaris which may be mistaken for normal dry skin up to life-threatening conditions such as harlequin type ichthyosis. The most common type of ichthyosis is ichthyosis vulgaris, accounting for more than 95% of cases

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Ichthyosis  is an inherited skin disorder in which dead skin cells accumulate in thick, dry scales on your skin’s surface. The scales of ichthyosis  can be present at birth, but usually first appear during early childhood. Sometimes ichthyosis  disappears entirely for most of the adult years, only to return later.

Types:
There are many types of Ichthyosis and an exact diagnosis may be difficult. Types of Ichthyosis are classified by their appearance and their genetic cause. Ichthyosis caused by the same gene can vary considerably in severity and symptoms. Some Ichthyosis don’t appear to fit exactly into any one type. Also different genes can produce Ichthyosis with similar symptoms. The most common or well-known types are as follows:

Genetic ichthyosisIchthyosis vulgaris
*X-linked ichthyosis
*Congenital ichthyosiform erythroderma (nbCIE)
*Epidermolytic hyperkeratosis (bullous ichthyosis, bCIE)
*Harlequin type ichthyosis
*Ichthyosis bullosa of Siemens
*Ichthyosis hystrix
*Ichthyosis lamellaris (lamellar ichthyosis)

Ichthyosis with additional characteristics:
*Carvajal syndrome
*CHILD Syndrome
*Conradi-Hünermann syndrome
*Darier’s disease
*Erythrokeratodermia variabilis (Erythrokeratodermia figurata variabilis, Mendes da Costa type erythrokeratodermia)
*IFAP syndrome (Ichthyosis follicularis)
*Keratitis-ichthyosis-deafness syndrome
*Netherton syndrome
*Neutral lipid storage disease (Dorfman-Chanarin syndrome)
*Refsum’s disease
*Rud syndrome
*Senter syndrome
*Sjögren-Larsson syndrome
*Tay syndrome (IBIDS syndrome, Trichothiodystrophy)

Non-genetic ichthyosisIchthyosis
*acquisita

Most cases of ichthyosis  are mild, but some are severe. Sometimes other skin diseases are associated with ichthyosis vulgaris, such as the rash-producing atopic dermatitis. No cure has been found for ichthyosis , and treatments focus on controlling the condition.

 

Symptoms:
In ichthyosis vulgaris, the skin cells are produced at the standard rate, but don’t separate normally as they reach the skin’s surface. This means skin cells aren’t shed as quickly as they should be, leading to a build-up of cells, which appear as scales. Just one or a few areas are usually affected, often the legs or lower body.


The face isn’t usually affected but, when it is, the scaling is usually limited to the forehead and cheeks. The scales are typically fine and white.

Most babies with ichthyosis vulgaris don’t have any sign of the condition when they’re newly born. But within the first year, skin abnormalities begin to develop.

The dry, scaly skin may then become a chronic, lifelong problem, although it can vary dramatically with age, weather and other factors. It often improves in the summer, for example, and also tends to get better with age.

Causes:
Ichthyosis vulgaris is characterized by chronic, excessive buildup of the protein in the upper layer of the skin (keratin). This buildup is a result of your skin’s natural shedding process being slowed or inhibited.


Ichthyosis vulgaris is most often caused by a genetic mutation, inherited in an autosomal dominant pattern. That means a child has to inherit only one copy of the affected gene to develop the disease. Children with the inherited form of the disorder usually have normal skin at birth, but develop scaling and roughness during the first few years of life. At times, ichthyosis vulgaris may disappear during the adult years, only to return later.

Ichthyosis not caused by genetic abnormalities, referred to as acquired ichthyosis, is rare. This type usually shows up in adulthood. It’s usually associated with other diseases, such as cancer, thyroid disease or chronic renal failure.

Complications:
Ichthyosis can affect more than the appearance of your skin; it can affect your skin’s ability to function normally. As a result, some people with ichthyosis may experience:

*Overheating. In rare cases, ichthyosis interferes with sweating. Skin thickness and scales prevent sweat from reaching the surface of your skin, which inhibits cooling.

*Secondary infection. Skin splitting and cracking may lead to infections, either on your skin or a wider infection in your body.

 

Diagnosis:
A physician often can diagnose ichthyosis by looking at the skin. A family history is very useful. In some cases, a skin biopsy is done to help to confirm the diagnosis. In a biopsy, a small piece of skin is removed and examined under a microscope. In some instances, genetic testing may be helpful in making a diagnosis. Diabetes has not been linked to acquired ichthyosis or ichthyosis vulgaris.

Ichthyosis is not more or less common in any ethnic group. As of now, there is no way to prevent ichthyosis since it is often of a genetic nature.

Treatments:
There are two main aims of treatment for ichthyosis:

•Keeping the skin moisturised and supple – the main aim is to prevent cracks from forming in the skin as these can allow micro-organisms to penetrate the barrier of the skin and so infection to establish. This is done using moisturising creams, and baths and lotions called emollients.

•Removing some of the layers of skin cells, either by mechanical means (rubbing gently with a pumice) or by treatments such as alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs), which help to break up the chemical ‘cement’ that glues skin cells together.
There may be other treatments aimed at the cause of ichthyosis if this can be identified – for example correcting nutritional deficiencies, stopping or changing medication or treating hormonal problems.
Life Style & Home Care:
Although self-help measures won’t cure ichthyosis, they may help improve the appearance and feel of damaged skin.  These measures can be considered to help:

*Take long soaking baths to soften the skin. Then use a rough-textured sponge, such as a loofa sponge, to remove the thickened scales.

*Choose mild soaps that have added oils and fats. Avoid deodorant and antibacterial soaps, which are especially harsh on dry skin.

*After showering or bathing, gently pat or blot your skin dry with a towel so that some moisture remains on the skin.

*Apply moisturizer or lubricating cream while your skin is still moist from bathing. Choose a moisturizer that contains urea or propylene glycol — chemicals that help keep your skin moist. Petroleum jelly is another good choice. Cover the treated areas with plastic wrap to keep the petroleum jelly from staining clothes and furniture.

*Apply an over-the-counter product that contains urea, lactic acid or a low concentration of salicylic acid twice daily. Mild acidic compounds help your skin shed its dead skin cells. Urea helps bind moisture to your skin.

*Use a portable home humidifier or one attached to your furnace to add moisture to the air inside your home.

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.mayoclinic.com/health/ichthyosis-vulgaris/DS00734
http://www.beltina.org/health-dictionary/ichthyosis-treatment-severe-diagnosis.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ichthyosis
http://www.bbc.co.uk/health/physical_health/conditions/ichthyosis.shtml

Ichthyosis Causes Fish-Like Scales on Your Skin

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The Internet Website Can Help You Keep Your Weight Off

As per new research the web page or the internet  may help you to reduce your weight. During the study it is found that more often people log on specially designed Kaiser  Permanente weight  loss webpage, it is more likely that they were to maintain weight loss.

………….

Those who made the study  believed that the webpage worked as a result of its mixture of accountability and sociability.

The website users were asked log in once a week to enter their weight and the amount of exercise they’d done — and if they didn’t log in regularly, they got an e-mail and then an automated phone call. Users could also chat with other study participants.


Time Magazine reports:

“The study began with 1,600 overweight or obese participants, about 350 of whom lost enough weight … to stay in the trial … Users who had logged on the most regularly — at least once a month for 28 months — had kept off the most weight, an average of 9 lbs. People who used the website the least kept off only 3 lb. on average.”


Resources:

Time Magazine July 29, 2010
Journal of Medical Internet Research July 27, 2010;12(3):e29

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Why Some Diets Work Better for Some People than Others

 

Ever notice some people seem to eat anything they want and never gain a pound, while others seem to gain weight just by looking at fattening foods? You may be seeing things correctly after all. According to research this may have a biological cause. Using fruit flies, researchers have found that genes interacting with diet, rather than diet alone, are the main cause of variation in metabolic traits, such as body weight. This helps explain why some diets work better for some people than ot…hers, and suggests that future diets should be tailored to an individual’s genes rather than to physical appearance.

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“There is no one-size-fits all solution to the diseases of obesity and type-2 diabetes,” said Laura K. Reed, the lead investigator in the work. “Each person has a unique set of genetic and environmental factors contributing to his or her metabolic health, and as a society, we should stop looking for a panacea and start accepting that this is a complex problem that may have a different solution for each individual.”

To make this discovery, the scientists studied 146 different genetic lines of fruit flies that were fed four different diets (nutritionally balanced, low calorie, high sugar, and high fat). Researchers then measured a variety of metabolic traits, including body weight, in each group. Flies in some of the genetic lines were highly sensitive to their diets, as reflected by changes in body weight, while flies of other lines showed no change in weight across diets. The scientists were able to ascertain what portion of the total variation in the metabolic traits was determined by genetics alone, by diet alone, or by the interaction between genotype and diet. Results showed that diet alone made a small contribution to the total variation, while genotype and genotype interactions with diet made very large contributions. This study strongly suggests that some individuals can achieve benefits from altering their dietary habits, while the same changes for others will have virtually no effect.

“The summer beach season often serves as a ‘gut check’ for many in terms of their weight,” said Mark Johnston, Editor-in-Chief of the journal Genetics. “This research explains why the one-size-fits-all approach offered by many diet programs can have dramatically different effects for people who try them.”


Source
: Elements4Health

 

Medical News – Updated

You may click & read the  UPDATED MEDICAL NEWS:->

1.Prostate Cancer:->:prostate-cancer-prostrate-l A Newly Discovered Route For Testosterone To Reach The Prostate: Treatment By Super-selective Intraprostatic Androgen Deprivation.

2. Breast Cancer->Breast_Cancer_nor.Breast_Cancer_ab . HER2-like And Basal-Like Genotype Breast Cancer Are More Likely To Respond To Chemotherapy:

3. Emotional Distress-> emotional distress Understanding The Emotional Distress Facing First Responders

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Some Health Quaries & Answers

 

Not a death knell :
Q: My 54 year-old widowed mother has been diagnosed with diabetes. She works as a secretary. Following the diagnosis she has given up her job and sits at home staring at the television. She insists she is very sick.

A: The diagnosis may have been a shock and she may be feeling depressed. You have to explain to her that it is not a terminal disease. It can be easily brought under control with a 1,500 calorie diet, regular exercise (walking for 40 minutes a day) and the prescribed medication.

This way she can lead a long and healthy life. Failure to adhere to this may result in complications.

Fat, but can’t walk
Q: I have arthritis of the knees. Walking is painful, so I have been taking rest. In the process, I put on 15kg. Now the doctor says I must lose weight. I cannot walk. Dieting is not effective at all. What am I to do?

A: You can lose only a certain amount of weight with dieting alone. If you are sitting at home with nothing else to do, the hunger pangs can be devastating. You could purchase a recline exercise cycle. In that you actually sit with a backrest and cycle. It is easy on the knees. Two hours of cycling and a calorie-restricted diet will guarantee weight loss!

Do sunglasses help?
Q: Do wearing sunglasses in India help in any way?

A: Sunglasses are not just fashionable. Good quality glasses with ultra violet protection prevent premature ageing of the eye, cataract formation and yellowing of the sclera.

Stop smoking
Q: My leg feels numb and I cannot walk more than 100m without feeling pain. I am 26 years old and smoke around 20 cigarettes a day.

A: The nicotine and other poisonous chemicals in cigarettes constrict the blood vessels. When the main blood vessels are affected intermittent claudication (pain on walking a certain distance relieved by rest) develops. When the blood supply to the nerves is affected tingling and numbness develops. It is better for you to stop smoking altogether. It offers no benefits, is expensive and in your case is adversely affecting your health.

Lots of red blood cells
Q: I have been suffering from drowsiness and feel uneasiness in the chest in the morning hours. I have consulted doctors and after various pathological tests found that I have excessive haemoglobin (last test reveals 21.0 g/dl). I was told I had polycythemia and was advised to remove 250ml of blood from my body twice a week. This is frightening and I do not understand why a high haemoglobin count is considered bad and not healthy.

A: Polycythemia is a condition in which there is a net increase in the total number of red blood cells in the body. This may be a response to low oxygen levels in the body as a result of smoking, renal or liver tumours, haemangioblastomas in the central nervous system, heart or lung diseases, or endocrine abnormalities. It can occur in athletes who dope themselves with high testosterone levels. High levels of haemoglobin increase the viscosity of the blood. This can lead to blockages and strokes. If you live at a high altitude, are a smoker, or have any of the correctable causes listed above, you can be cured once the underlying disease is treated. Otherwise removal of the blood at regular periodic intervals is the only solution.

Help, I’m bald
Q: I have lost a great deal of hair and am now bald. Can I use minoxidil?

A: Hair loss and hereditary baldness do respond to minoxidil. The problem is that the lotion has to be applied regularly. The hair which grows is fine and silky (lanugo hair) and tends to fall out soon after the applications are stopped.


Source
: The Telegraph (Kolkata, India)

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