Categories
Ailmemts & Remedies

Cervical cancer

Description:
Cervical cancer is a type of cancer that occurs in the cells of the cervix — the lower part of the uterus that connects to the vagina. It is due to the abnormal growth of cells that have the ability to invade or spread to other parts of the body. Early on, typically no symptoms are seen. Later symptoms may include abnormal vaginal bleeding, pelvic pain or pain during sexual intercourse. While bleeding after sex may not be serious, it may also indicate the presence of cervical cancer.

Human papillomavirus infection (HPV),a sexually transmitted infection causes more than 90% of cases; most people who have had HPV infections, however, do not develop cervical cancer. Other risk factors include smoking, a weak immune system, birth control pills, starting sex at a young age, and having many sexual partners, but these are less importan. It typically develops from precancerous changes over 10 to 20 years. About 90% of cervical cancer cases are squamous cell carcinomas, 10% are adenocarcinoma, and a small number are other types.

When exposed to HPV, the body’s immune system typically prevents the virus from doing harm. In a small percentage of people, however, the virus survives for years, contributing to the process that causes some cervical cells to become cancer cells.

Worldwide, cervical cancer is both the fourth-most common cause of cancer and the fourth-most common cause of death from cancer in women.

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One can reduce the risk of developing cervical cancer by having screening tests and receiving a vaccine that protects against HPV infection.

Signs and symptoms:
The early stages of cervical cancer may be completely free of symptoms. Vaginal bleeding, contact bleeding (one most common form being bleeding after sexual intercourse), or (rarely) a vaginal mass may indicate the presence of malignancy. Also, moderate pelvic pain during sexual intercourse,between periods or after menopause and watery, bloody vaginal discharge that may be heavy and have a foul odor are symptoms of cervical cancer. In advanced disease, metastases may be present in the abdomen, lungs, or elsewhere.

Symptoms of advanced cervical cancer may include: loss of appetite, weight loss, fatigue, pelvic pain, back pain, leg pain, swollen legs, heavy vaginal bleeding, bone fractures, and (rarely) leakage of urine or feces from the vagina. Bleeding after douching or after a pelvic exam is a common symptom of cervical cancer.

Causes:
It isn’t clear what causes cervical cancer, but it’s certain that HPV plays a big role. HPV is very common, and most people with the virus never develop cancer. This means other factors — such as the environment or lifestyle choices — also determine whether one will develop cervical cancer.

Some of the causes are:

  • Human papillomavirus (HPV):
    HPV types 16 and 18 are the cause of 75% of cervical cancer cases globally, while 31 and 45 are the causes of another 10%.

Women who have sex with men who have many other sexual partners or women who have many sexual partners have a greater risk.

Of the 150-200 types of HPV known, 15 are classified as high-risk types (16, 18, 31, 33, 35, 39, 45, 51, 52, 56, 58, 59, 68, 73, and 82), three as probable high-risk (26, 53, and 66), and 12 as low-risk (6, 11, 40, 42, 43, 44, 54, 61, 70, 72, 81, and CP6108).

Genital warts, which are a form of benign tumor of epithelial cells, are also caused by various strains of HPV. However, these serotypes are usually not related to cervical cancer. Having multiple strains at the same time is common, including those that can cause cervical cancer along with those that cause warts. Infection with HPV is generally believed to be required for cervical cancer to occur.

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*Smoking:
Smoking has also been linked to the development of cervical cancer. Smoking can increase the risk in women a few different ways, which can be by direct and indirect methods of inducing cervical cancer. A direct way of contracting this cancer is a smoker has a higher chance of cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN3) occurring, which has the potential of forming cervical cancer. When CIN3 lesions lead to cancer, most of them have the assistance of the HPV virus, but that is not always the case, which is why it can be considered a direct link to cervical cancer. Heavy smoking and long-term smoking seem to have more of a risk of getting the CIN3 lesions than lighter smoking or not smoking at all. Although smoking has been linked to cervical cancer, it aids in the development of HPV, which is the leading cause of this type of cancer. Also, not only does it aid in the development of HPV, but also if the woman is already HPV-positive, she is at an even greater likelihood of contracting cervical cancer.

*Oral contraceptives:
Long-term use of oral contraceptives is associated with increased risk of cervical cancer. Women who have used oral contraceptives for 5 to 9 years have about three times the incidence of invasive cancer, and those who used them for 10 years or longer have about four times the risk.

*Multiple pregnancies:
Having many pregnancies is associated with an increased risk of cervical cancer. Among HPV-infected women, those who have had seven or more full-term pregnancies have around four times the risk of cancer compared with women with no pregnancies, and two to three times the risk of women who have had one or two full-term pregnancies.

Diagnosis:

Screening:
It includes the following:
*Pap test. During a Pap test, your doctor scrapes and brushes cells from your cervix, which are then examined in a lab for abnormalities.

A Pap test can detect abnormal cells in the cervix, including cancer cells and cells that show changes that increase the risk of cervical cancer.

*HPV DNA test. The HPV DNA test involves testing cells collected from the cervix for infection with any of the types of HPV that are most likely to lead to cervical cancer.

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Biopsy:
Confirmation of the diagnosis of cervical cancer or precancer requires a biopsy of the cervix. This is often done through colposcopy, a magnified visual inspection of the cervix aided by using a dilute acetic acid (e.g. vinegar) solution to highlight abnormal cells on the surface of the cervix, with visual contrast provided by staining the normal tissues a mahogany brown with Lugol’s iodine. Medical devices used for biopsy of the cervix include punch forceps. Colposcopic impression, the estimate of disease severity based on the visual inspection, forms part of the diagnosis. Further diagnostic and treatment procedures are loop electrical excision procedure and cervical conization, in which the inner lining of the cervix is removed to be examined pathologically. These are carried out if the biopsy confirms severe cervical intraepithelial neoplasia.

Often before the biopsy, the doctor asks for medical imaging to rule out other causes of woman’s symptoms. Imaging modalities such as ultrasound, CT scan, and MRI have been used to look for alternating disease, spread of the tumor, and effect on adjacent structures. Typically, they appear as heterogeneous mass on the cervix.

Interventions such as playing music during the procedure and viewing the procedure on a monitor can reduce the anxiety associated with the examination.

Precancerous lesions:
Cervical intraepithelial neoplasia, the potential precursor to cervical cancer, is often diagnosed on examination of cervical biopsies by a pathologist. For premalignant dysplastic changes, cervical intraepithelial neoplasia grading is used.

The naming and histologic classification of cervical carcinoma precursor lesions has changed many times over the 20th century. The World Health Organization classification[48] system was descriptive of the lesions, naming them mild, moderate, or severe dysplasia or carcinoma in situ (CIS). The term cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN) was developed to place emphasis on the spectrum of abnormality in these lesions, and to help standardize treatment. It classifies mild dysplasia as CIN1, moderate dysplasia as CIN2, and severe dysplasia and CIS as CIN3. More recently, CIN2 and CIN3 have been combined into CIN2/3. These results are what a pathologist might report from a biopsy.

These should not be confused with the Bethesda system terms for Pap test (cytopathology) results. Among the Bethesda results: Low-grade squamous intraepithelial lesion (LSIL) and high-grade squamous intraepithelial lesion (HSIL). An LSIL Pap may correspond to CIN1, and HSIL may correspond to CIN2 and CIN3, but they are results of different tests, and the Pap test results need not match the histologic findings.

Staging:…….CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES
Cervical cancer is staged by the FIGO system, which is based on clinical examination, rather than surgical findings. It allows only these diagnostic tests to be used in determining the stage: palpation, inspection, colposcopy, endocervical curettage, hysteroscopy, cystoscopy, proctoscopy, intravenous urography, and X-ray examination of the lungs and skeleton, and cervical conization.

Prevention:…….CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES
Checking cervical cells with the Papanicolaou test (Pap test) for cervical pre-cancer has dramatically reduced the number of cases of, and mortality from, cervical cancer. Liquid-based cytology may reduced the number of inadequate samples. Pap test screening every three to five years with appropriate follow-up can reduce cervical cancer incidence up to 80%. Abnormal results may suggest the presence of precancerous changes, allowing examination and possible preventive treatment, known as colposcopy. The treatment of low-grade lesions may adversely affect subsequent fertility and pregnancy. Personal invitations encouraging women to get screened are effective at increasing the likelihood they will do so. Educational materials also help increase the likelihood women will go for screening, but they are not as effective as invitations.

According to the 2010 European guidelines, the age at which to start screening ranges between 20 and 30 years of age, but preferentially not before age 25 or 30 years, and depends on burden of the disease in the population and the available resources.

In the United States, screening is recommended to begin at age 21, regardless of age at which a woman began having sex or other risk factors. Pap tests should be done every three years between the ages of 21 and 65. In women over the age of 65, screening may be discontinued if no abnormal screening results were seen within the previous 10 years and no history of CIN2 or higher exists. HPV vaccination status does not change screening rates.

A number of recommended options exist for screening those 30 to 65. This includes cervical cytology every 3 years, HPV testing every 5 years, or HPV testing together with cytology every 5 years. Screening is not beneficial before age 25, as the rate of disease is low. Screening is not beneficial in women older than 60 years if they have a history of negative results. The American Society of Clinical Oncology guideline has recommend for different levels of resource availability.

Pap tests have not been as effective in developing countries. This is in part because many of these countries have an impoverished health care infrastructure, too few trained and skilled professionals to obtain and interpret Pap tests, uninformed women who get lost to follow-up, and a lengthy turn-around time to get results. Visual inspection with acetic acid and HPV DNA testing have been tried, though with mixed success.

Barrier protection:
Barrier protection or spermicidal gel use during sexual intercourse decreases, but does not eliminate risk of transmitting the infection, though condoms may protect against genital warts.[64] They also provide protection against other sexually transmitted infections, such as HIV and Chlamydia, which are associated with greater risks of developing cervical cancer.

Vaccination:
Three HPV vaccines (Gardasil, Gardasil 9, and Cervarix) reduce the risk of cancerous or precancerous changes of the cervix and perineum by about 93% and 62%, respectively.[65] The vaccines are between 92% and 100% effective against HPV 16 and 18 up to at least 8 years.

HPV vaccines are typically given to age 9 to 26, as the vaccine is most effective if given before infection occurs. The duration of effectiveness and whether a booster will be needed is unknown. The high cost of this vaccine has been a cause for concern. Several countries have considered (or are considering) programs to fund HPV vaccination. The American Society of Clinical Oncology guideline has recommendations for different levels of resource availability.

Since 2010, young women in Japan have been eligible to receive the cervical cancer vaccination for free. In June 2013, the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare mandated that, before administering the vaccine, medical institutions must inform women that the ministry does not recommend it. However, the vaccine is still available at no cost to Japanese women who choose to accept the vaccination.

Nutrition:
Vitamin A is associated with a lower risk as are vitamin B12, vitamin C, vitamin E, and beta-Carotene.

Treatment:
Treatment for cervical cancer depends on several factors, such as the stage of the cancer, other health problems you may have and your preferences. Surgery, radiation, chemotherapy or a combination of the three may be used.

Surgery:
Early-stage cervical cancer is typically treated with surgery. Which operation is best for you will depend on the size of your cancer, its stage and whether you would like to consider becoming pregnant in the future.

Options might include:

*Surgery to cut away the cancer only. For a very small cervical cancer, it might be possible to remove the cancer entirely with a cone biopsy. This procedure involves cutting away a cone-shaped piece of cervical tissue, but leaving the rest of the cervix intact. This option may make it possible for you to consider becoming pregnant in the future.

*Surgery to remove the cervix (trachelectomy). Early-stage cervical cancer might be treated with a radical trachelectomy procedure, which removes the cervix and some surrounding tissue. The uterus remains after this procedure, so it may be possible to become pregnant, if you choose.

*Surgery to remove the cervix and uterus (hysterectomy). Most early-stage cervical cancers are treated with a radical hysterectomy operation, which involves removing the cervix, uterus, part of the vagina and nearby lymph nodes. A hysterectomy can cure early-stage cervical cancer and prevent recurrence. But removing the uterus makes it impossible to become pregnant.

Radiation:
Radiation therapy uses high-powered energy beams, such as X-rays or protons, to kill cancer cells. Radiation therapy is often combined with chemotherapy as the primary treatment for locally advanced cervical cancers. It can also be used after surgery if there’s an increased risk that the cancer will come back.

Radiation therapy can be given:

*Externally, by directing a radiation beam at the affected area of the body (external beam radiation therapy)

*Internally, by placing a device filled with radioactive material inside your vagina, usually for only a few minutes (brachytherapy)
Both externally and internally.

Radiation therapy might cause menopause. If one wants to consider becoming pregnant after radiation treatment, the doctor should be asked to preserve the eggs before treatment starts.

Chemotherapy:
Chemotherapy is a drug treatment that uses chemicals to kill cancer cells. It can be given through a vein or taken in pill form. Sometimes both methods are used.

For locally advanced cervical cancer, low doses of chemotherapy are often combined with radiation therapy, since chemotherapy may enhance the effects of the radiation. Higher doses of chemotherapy might be recommended to help control symptoms of very advanced cancer.

Immunotherapy:
Immunotherapy is a drug treatment that helps your immune system to fight cancer. Your body’s disease-fighting immune system might not attack cancer because the cancer cells produce proteins that make them undetectable by the immune system cells. Immunotherapy works by interfering with that process. For cervical cancer, immunotherapy might be considered when the cancer is advanced and other treatments aren’t working.

Supportive (palliative) care:
Palliative care is specialized medical care that focuses on providing relief from pain and other symptoms of a serious illness. Palliative care specialists work with you, your family and your other doctors to provide an extra layer of support that complements your ongoing care.

Prognosis:
Prognosis depends on the stage of the cancer. The chance of a survival rate is nearly 100% for women with microscopic forms of cervical cancer. With treatment, the five-year relative survival rate for the earliest stage of invasive cervical cancer is 92%, and the overall (all stages combined) five-year survival rate is about 72%. These statistics may be improved when applied to women newly diagnosed, bearing in mind that these outcomes may be partly based on the state of treatment five years ago when the women studied were first diagnosed.

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:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cervical_cancer
https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/cervical-cancer/symptoms-causes/syc-20352501
https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/cervical-cancer/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20352506

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Categories
Ailmemts & Remedies

Coronavirus

Description:
A coronavirus is one of a number of viruses that cause diseases in mammals and birds. In humans, the viruses cause respiratory infections, including the common cold, which are typically mild, though rarer forms such as SARS, MERS and 2019-nCoV can be lethal. Symptoms vary in other species: in chickens, they cause an upper respiratory disease, while in cows and pigs coronaviruses cause diarrhea. There are no vaccines or antiviral drugs to prevent or treat human coronavirus infections.

Coronaviruses are in the subfamily Orthocoronavirinae in the family Coronaviridae, in the order Nidovirales. They are enveloped viruses with a positive-sense single-stranded RNA genome and a nucleocapsid of helical symmetry. The genome size of coronaviruses ranges from approximately 26 to 32 kilobases, the largest for an RNA virus.

The name “coronavirus” is derived from the Latin corona, meaning crown or halo, which refers to the characteristic appearance of the virus particles (virions): they have a fringe reminiscent of a crown or of a solar corona.

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Discovery
Coronaviruses were discovered in the 1960s. The earliest ones discovered were infectious bronchitis virus in chickens and two viruses from the nasal cavities of human patients with the common cold that were subsequently named human coronavirus 229E and human coronavirus OC43. Other members of this family have since been identified, including SARS-CoV in 2003, HCoV NL63 in 2004, HKU1 in 2005, MERS-CoV in 2012, and 2019-nCoV in 2019; most of these have been involved in serious respiratory tract infections.

Replication:
After cell entry, the virus particle is uncoated and its genome enters the cell cytoplasm.

The coronavirus RNA genome has a 5′ methylated cap and a 3’polyadenylated tail,which allows the RNA to attach to ribosomes for translation.

Coronavirus genomes also encodes a protein called a replicase which allows the viral genome to be transcribed into new RNA copies using the host cell’s machinery. The replicase is the first protein to be made; once the gene encoding the replicase is translated, translation is stopped by a stop codon. This is known as a nested transcript. When the mRNA transcript only encodes one gene, it is monocistronic. A coronavirus non-structural protein provides extra fidelity to replication because it confers a proofreading function, which is lacking in RNA-dependent RNA polymerase enzymes alone.

The genome is replicated and a long polyprotein is formed, where all of the proteins are attached. Coronaviruses have a non-structural protein – a protease – which is able to cleave the polyprotein. This process is a form of genetic economy, allowing the virus to encode the greatest number of genes in a small number of nucleotides.

CLICK & SEE THE INFECTION CYCLE OF CORONAVIRUS

Transmission:
Human to human transmission of coronaviruses is primarily thought to occur among close contacts via respiratory droplets generated by sneezing and coughing.

Human coronaviruses:
Coronaviruses are believed to cause a significant proportion of all common colds in adults and children. Coronaviruses cause colds with major symptoms, such as fever and sore throat from swollen adenoids, primarily in the winter and early spring seasons. Coronaviruses can cause pneumonia – either direct viral pneumonia or a secondary bacterial pneumonia – and may cause bronchitis – either direct viral bronchitis or a secondary bacterial bronchitis. The much publicized human coronavirus discovered in 2003, SARS-CoV, which causes severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), has a unique pathogenesis because it causes both upper and lower respiratory tract infections. There are no vaccines or antiviral drugs to prevent or treat human coronavirus infections.

Seven strains of human coronaviruses are known:

*Human coronavirus 229E (HCoV-229E)
*Human coronavirus OC43 (HCoV-OC43)
*Severe acute respiratory syndrome-related coronavirus (SARS-CoV)
*Human coronavirus NL63 (HCoV-NL63, New Haven coronavirus)
*Human coronavirus HKU1
*Middle East respiratory syndrome-related coronavirus (MERS-CoV), previously known as novel coronavirus 2012 and HCoV-EMC.
*Novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), also known as Wuhan coronavirus. (‘Novel’ in this case means newly discovered, or newly originated, and is a placeholder name.)
*The coronaviruses HCoV-229E, -NL63, -OC43, and -HKU1 continually circulate in the human population and cause respiratory infections in adults and children world-wide

CLICK & SEE …>Phylogenetic tree of coronaviruses

Novel Coronavirus:
The 2019 novel coronavirus, informally known as the Wuhan coronavirus, is a contagious virus that causes 2019-nCoV acute respiratory disease, a respiratory infection. It is the cause of the ongoing 2019–20 Wuhan coronavirus outbreak, a global health emergency. Genomic sequencing has shown that it is a positive-sense, single-stranded RNA coronavirus…….CLICK & SEE

As of 10 February 2020, there have been 1,015 confirmed deaths and more than 42,850 confirmed cases in the coronavirus pneumonia outbreak. The Wuhan strain has been identified as a new strain of Betacoronavirus from group 2B with an ~70% genetic similarity to the SARS-CoV. The virus was suspected to have originated in snakes, but many leading researchers disagree with this conclusion. The virus has a 96% similarity to a bat coronavirus, so an origin in bats is widely.

Common Symptoms of Coronavirus:
The symptoms of most coronaviruses are similar to any other upper respiratory infection, including runny nose, coughing, sore throat, and sometimes a fever. In most cases, you won’t know whether you have a coronavirus or a different cold-causing virus, such as rhinovirus.

Diseases caused:
Coronaviruses primarily infect the upper respiratory and gastrointestinal tract of mammals and birds. They also cause a range of diseases in farm animals and domesticated pets, some of which can be serious and are a threat to the farming industry. In chickens, the infectious bronchitis virus (IBV), a coronavirus, targets not only the respiratory tract but also the urogenital tract. The virus can spread to different organs throughout the chicken. Economically significant coronaviruses of farm animals include porcine coronavirus (transmissible gastroenteritis coronavirus, TGE) and bovine coronavirus, which both result in diarrhea in young animals. Feline coronavirus: two forms, feline enteric coronavirus is a pathogen of minor clinical significance, but spontaneous mutation of this virus can result in feline infectious peritonitis (FIP), a disease associated with high mortality. Similarly, there are two types of coronavirus that infect ferrets: ferret enteric coronavirus causes a gastrointestinal syndrome known as epizootic catarrhal enteritis (ECE), and a more lethal systemic version of the virus (like FIP in cats) known as ferret systemic coronavirus (FSC). There are two types of canine coronavirus (CCoV), one that causes mild gastrointestinal disease and one that has been found to cause respiratory disease. Mouse hepatitis virus (MHV) is a coronavirus that causes an epidemic murine illness with high mortality, especially among colonies of laboratory mice. Sialodacryoadenitis virus (SDAV) is highly infectious coronavirus of laboratory rats, which can be transmitted between individuals by direct contact and indirectly by aerosol. Acute infections have high morbidity and tropism for the salivary, lachrymal and harderian glands.

A HKU2-related bat coronavirus called swine acute diarrhea syndrome coronavirus (SADS-CoV) causes diarrhea in pigs.

Prior to the discovery of SARS-CoV, MHV had been the best-studied coronavirus both in vivo and in vitro as well as at the molecular level. Some strains of MHV cause a progressive demyelinating encephalitis in mice which has been used as a murine model for multiple sclerosis. Significant research efforts have been focused on elucidating the viral pathogenesis of these animal coronaviruses, especially by virologists interested in veterinary and zoonotic diseases

In domestic animals:
*Infectious bronchitis virus (IBV) causes avian infectious bronchitis.
*Porcine coronavirus (transmissible gastroenteritis coronavirus of pigs, TGEV).
*Bovine coronavirus (BCV), responsible for severe profuse enteritis in of young calves.
*Feline coronavirus (FCoV) causes mild enteritis in cats as well as severe Feline infectious peritonitis (other variants of the same virus).
the two types of canine coronavirus (CCoV) (one causing enteritis, the other found in respiratory diseases).
*Turkey coronavirus (TCV) causes enteritis in turkeys.
*Ferret enteric coronavirus causes epizootic catarrhal enteritis in ferrets.
*Ferret systemic coronavirus causes FIP-like systemic syndrome in ferrets.
*Pantropic canine coronavirus.
*Rabbit enteric coronavirus causes acute gastrointestinal disease and diarrhea in young European rabbits. Mortality rates are high.
*A new veterinary disease, porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PED or PEDV), has emerged around the world.[citation needed] Its economic importance is unclear but shows high mortality in piglets.

Treatment:
There is no medicine for the virus but only symtomatic treatment is given to reduce the symtems.

The following protective measures may be taken to protect oneself. :

What to Do About Coronavirus
There is no vaccine for coronavirus. To help prevent a coronavirus infection, do the same things you do to avoid the common cold:

Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and warm water or with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
Keep your hands and fingers away from your eyes, nose, and mouth.
Avoid close contact with people who are infected.
You treat a coronavirus infection the same way you treat a cold:

Get plenty of rest.

Drink fluids.
Take over-the-counter medicine for a sore throat and fever. But don’t give aspirin to children or teens younger than 19; use ibuprofen or acetaminophen instead.
A humidifier or steamy shower can also help ease a sore and scratchy throat.

Even when a coronavirus causes MERS or SARS in other countries, the kind of coronavirus infection common in the U.S. isn’t a serious threat for an otherwise healthy adult. If you get sick, treat your symptoms and contact a doctor if they get worse or don’t go away.

Resources
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coronavirus
https://www.webmd.com/lung/coronavirus#1

Categories
Ailmemts & Remedies

Hammer Toe

Description:
A hammer toe or contracted toe is a deformity of the muscles and ligaments of the proximal interphalangeal joint of the second, third, or fourth toe causing it to be bent, resembling a hammer. In the early stage a flexible hammertoe is movable at the joints; a rigid hammertoe joint can’t be moved and usually requires surgery.

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Mallet toe is a similar condition affecting the distal interphalangeal joint.

Claw toe is another similar condition, with dorsiflexion of the proximal phalanx on the lesser metatarsophalangeal joint, combined with flexion of both the proximal and distal interphalangeal joints. Claw toe can affect the second, third, fourth, or fifth toes.

Signs and symptoms:
A hammer toe causes you discomfort when you walk. It can also cause you pain when you try to stretch or move the affected toe or those around it. Hammer toe symptoms may be mild or severe.

Other Symptoms:
*A toe that bends downward
*Corns or calluses
*Difficulty walking
*Inability to flex your foot or wiggle your toes
*Claw-like toes

Causes:
Woman soothing her feet after wearing high heels
Wearing high heels can cause hammertoe.
Hammer toe occurs from an imbalance in the muscles surrounding the middle toe joint. These muscles, tendons, and ligaments work together to bend and straighten the toes.

If one of the muscles weakens, it cannot bend or straighten the toe. If the toe stays bent long enough, the muscles tighten and the toe will not be able to straighten out.

These muscle weaknesses and imbalances are caused by a variety of factors. Because some of the causes for hammer toe are avoidable, it is possible to minimize risk of developing hammer toe.

Causes of hammer toe include the following:

*Certain shoes – wearing high heels or shoes that are too tight through the box can force toes into a flexed position. When worn repeatedly, the toes may not be able to straighten, even when barefoot.

*Sex – women are more likely to develop hammer toe than men.

*Injuries – When a toe is broken, stubbed, or jammed, it may be more likely to develop hammer toe.

*Age – risk increases with age.

*Toe length – if the second toe is longer than the big toe, hammer toe is more likely to occur.

*Certain diseases – people suffering from conditions like arthritis or diabetes are more likely to develop foot problems, including hammer toe

*Genetics – sometimes, hammer toe is hereditary and may run in families.

Due to footwear styles, women are more likely than men to develop hammer toe. The risk of hammer toe also rises with age.

Diagnosis:
A doctor can usually diagnose a hammer toe during a physical exam. Imaging tests, such as X-rays, may be necessary if you’ve had a bone, muscle, or ligament injury in your toe.

Treatment:
The severity of your condition determines the treatment options for a hammer toe.

Treatment for a mild hammer toe:
You can correct a hammer toe caused by inappropriate footwear by wearing properly fitting shoes. If a high arch caused the condition, wearing toe pads or insoles in your shoes can help. These pads work by shifting your toe’s position, which relieves pain and corrects the appearance of your toe.

Shop for shoe insoles.:
You can usually use over-the-counter (OTC) cushions, pads, or medications to treat bunions and corns. However, if they’re painful or if they cause your toes to become deformed, your doctor may opt to surgically remove them.

Don’t pop any blisters on your toes. Popping blisters can cause pain and infection. Use OTC creams and cushions to relieve pain and keep blisters from rubbing against the inside of your shoes.

Gently stretching your toes can also help relieve pain and reposition the affected toe.

Treatment for a severe hammer toe:
If you’re unable to flex your toe, surgery is the only option to restore movement. Surgery can reposition the toe, remove deformed or injured bone, and realign your tendons and joints. Surgery is normally done on an outpatient basis, so you can return home on the day of your surgery.

After treating the cause of your hammer toe, it usually goes away without complications. However, waiting too long to seek treatment can cause your surrounding toes to become deformed as the hammer toe forces them out of position. It’s best to get treatment as soon as the diagnosis is confirmed.

The 8 Best Hammer Toe Straighteners of 2019

Prevention:

Hammer toe, like many other foot problems, can be avoided with wearing proper footwear. Proper footwear should have the following:

Low heels – higher heels force the feet into unnatural positions and often bend the toes.

Enough toe room – shoes should be properly sized and pointy-toed shoes should be avoided. Shoes should accommodate for the longest toe, which may not always be the big toe.

Adjustability – shoes with adjustable laces and straps are best.

Proper arch support – arch support prevents a number of foot ailments.

Long-term outlook:
Hammer toe can be treated and prevented with simple exercises and footwear changes. However, if the toe becomes rigid, surgery may be needed to relieve the hammer toe.

Even after treatment, hammer toe may return. The best way to make sure that hammer toe does not reoccur is through choosing proper footwear.

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:
https://search.yahoo.com/search?ei=utf-8&fr=aaplw&p=hammer+toe
https://www.healthline.com/health/hammer-toe#prevention
https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/315600.php

Categories
Ailmemts & Remedies

Agoraphobia

Description:
Agoraphobia is an anxiety disorder characterized by symptoms of anxiety in situations in which a person fears and avoid places or situations that might cause him or her to panic and make him or her feel trapped, helpless or embarrassed.As the person perceives their environment to be unsafe with no easy way to escape.These situations can include open spaces, public transit, shopping centers, or simply being outside their home. Peersons fear an actual or anticipated situation, such as using public transportation, being in open or enclosed spaces, standing in line, or being in a crowd. Being in these situations may result in a panic attack. The symptoms occur nearly every time the situation is encountered and last for more than six months. Those affected will go to great lengths to avoid these situations. In severe cases people may become completely unable to leave their homes.

Agoraphobia is believed to be due to a combination of genetic and environmental factors. The condition often runs in families, and stressful or traumatic events such as the death of a parent or being attacked may be a trigger. In the DSM-5 agoraphobia is classified as a phobia along with specific phobias and social phobia. Other conditions that can produce similar symptoms include separation anxiety, posttraumatic stress disorder, and major depressive disorder. Those affected are at higher risk of depression and substance use disorder.

Without treatment it is uncommon for agoraphobia to resolve. Treatment is typically with a type of counselling called cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). CBT results in resolution for about half of people. Women are affected about twice as often as men. The condition often begins in early adulthood and becomes less common in old age. It is rare in children.

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Symptoms:
Agoraphobia is a condition where sufferers become anxious in unfamiliar environments or where they perceive that they have little control.
Typical agoraphobia symptoms include fear of:

*Leaving home alone
*Crowds or waiting in line
*Enclosed spaces, such as movie theaters, elevators or small stores
*Open spaces, such as parking lots, bridges or malls
*Using public transportation, such as a bus, plane or train
*These situations cause anxiety because you fear you won’t be able to escape or find help if you start to feel panicked or have other disabling or embarrassing symptoms.

Panic disorder and agoraphobia:
Some people have a panic disorder in addition to agoraphobia. Panic disorder is a type of anxiety disorder in which you experience sudden attacks of extreme fear that reach a peak within a few minutes and trigger intense physical symptoms (panic attacks). You might think that you’re totally losing control, having a heart attack or even dying.

Fear of another panic attack can lead to avoiding similar circumstances or the place where it occurred in an attempt to prevent future panic attacks.

Signs and symptoms of a panic attack can include:

*Rapid heart rate
*Trouble breathing or a feeling of choking
*Chest pain or pressure
*Lightheadedness or dizziness
*Feeling shaky, numb or tingling
*Excessive sweating
*Sudden flushing or chills
*Upset stomach or diarrhea
*Feeling a loss of control
*Fear of dying

Causes:
Agoraphobia is believed to be due to a combination of genetic and environmental factors. The condition often runs in families, and stressful or traumatic events such as the death of a parent or being attacked may be a trigger.

Research has uncovered a link between agoraphobia and difficulties with spatial orientation. Individuals without agoraphobia are able to maintain balance by combining information from their vestibular system, their visual system, and their proprioceptive sense. A disproportionate number of agoraphobics have weak vestibular function and consequently rely more on visual or tactile signals. They may become disoriented when visual cues are sparse (as in wide-open spaces) or overwhelming (as in crowds). Likewise, they may be confused by sloping or irregular surfaces. In a virtual reality study, agoraphobics showed impaired processing of changing audiovisual data in comparison with nonsuffering subjects.

Substance induced:
Chronic use of tranquilizers and sleeping pills such as benzodiazepines has been linked to onset of agoraphobia. In 10 patients who had developed agoraphobia during benzodiazepine dependence, symptoms abated within the first year of assisted withdrawal. Similarly, alcohol use disorders are associated with panic with or without agoraphobia; this association may be due to the long-term effects of alcohol misuse causing a distortion in brain chemistry. Tobacco smoking has also been associated with the development and emergence of agoraphobia, often with panic disorder; it is uncertain how tobacco smoking results in anxiety-panic with or without agoraphobia symptoms, but the direct effects of nicotine dependence or the effects of tobacco smoke on breathing have been suggested as possible causes. Self-medication or a combination of factors may also explain the association between tobacco smoking and agoraphobia and panic.

Attachment theory:
Some scholars have explained agoraphobia as an attachment deficit, i.e., the temporary loss of the ability to tolerate spatial separations from a secure base. Recent empirical research has also linked attachment and spatial theories of agoraphobia.

Spatial theory:
In the social sciences, a perceived clinical bias[26] exists in agoraphobia research. Branches of the social sciences, especially geography, have increasingly become interested in what may be thought of as a spatial phenomenon. One such approach links the development of agoraphobia with modernity.Factors considered contributing to agoraphobia within modernity are the ubiquity of cars and urbanization. These have helped develop the expansion of public space, on one hand, and the contraction of private space on the other, thus creating in the minds of agoraphobic-prone people a tense, unbridgeable gulf between the two.

Evolutionary psychology:
An evolutionary psychology view is that the more unusual primary agoraphobia without panic attacks may be due to a different mechanism from agoraphobia with panic attacks. Primary agoraphobia without panic attacks may be a specific phobia explained by it once having been evolutionarily advantageous to avoid exposed, large, open spaces without cover or concealment. Agoraphobia with panic attack, though, may be an avoidance response secondary to the panic attacks due to fear of the situations in which the panic attacks occurred.

Risk factors:
Agoraphobia can begin in childhood, but usually starts in the late teen or early adult years — usually before age 35 — but older adults can also develop it. Women are diagnosed with agoraphobia more often than men are.

Risk factors for agoraphobia include:

*Having panic disorder or other phobias
*Responding to panic attacks with excessive fear and avoidance
*Experiencing stressful life events, such as abuse, the death of a parent or being attacked
*Having an anxious or nervous temperament
*Having a blood relative with agoraphobia

Agoraphobia can also lead to or be associated with:

*Depression
*Alcohol or drug abuse
*Other mental health disorders, including other anxiety disorders or personality disorders

Diagnosis:
Most people who present to mental health specialists develop agoraphobia after the onset of panic disorder. Agoraphobia is best understood as an adverse behavioral outcome of repeated panic attacks and subsequent anxiety and preoccupation with these attacks that leads to an avoidance of situations where a panic attack could occur. Early treatment of panic disorder can often prevent agoraphobia. Agoraphobia is typically determined when symptoms are worse than panic disorder, but also do not meet the criteria for other anxiety disorders such as depression. In rare cases where agoraphobics do not meet the criteria used to diagnose panic disorder, the formal diagnosis of agoraphobia without history of panic disorder is used (primary agoraphobia).

Treatment:
Agoraphobia treatment usually includes both psychotherapy and medication. It may take some time, but treatment can help you get better.

Psychotherapy:
Psychotherapy involves working with a therapist to set goals and learn practical skills to reduce your anxiety symptoms. Cognitive behavioral therapy is one of the most effective forms of psychotherapy for anxiety disorders, including agoraphobia.

Generally a short-term treatment, cognitive behavioral therapy focuses on teaching you specific skills to better tolerate anxiety, directly challenge your worries and gradually return to the activities you’ve avoided because of anxiety. Through this process, your symptoms improve as you build on your initial success.

Cognitive restructuring has also proved useful in treating agoraphobia. This treatment involves coaching a participant through a dianoetic discussion, with the intent of replacing irrational, counterproductive beliefs with more factual and beneficial ones.

Relaxation techniques are often useful skills for the agoraphobic to develop, as they can be used to stop or prevent symptoms of anxiety and panic.

Medications:
Antidepressant medications most commonly used to treat anxiety disorders are mainly selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. Benzodiazepines, monoamine oxidase inhibitor, and tricyclic antidepressants are also sometimes prescribed for treatment of agoraphobia. Antidepressants are important because some have antipanic effects. Antidepressants should be used in conjunction with exposure as a form of self-help or with cognitive behaviour therapy. A combination of medication and cognitive behaviour therapy is sometimes the most effective treatment for agoraphobia.

Benzodiazepines, antianxiety medications such as alprazolam and clonazepam, are used to treat anxiety and can also help control the symptoms of a panic attack. If taken for too long, they can cause dependence. Treatment with benzodiazepines should not exceed 4 weeks. Side effects may include confusion, drowsiness, light-headedness, loss of balance, and memory loss.

Alternative medicine:
Eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) has been studied as a possible treatment for agoraphobia, with poor results.[39] As such, EMDR is only recommended in cases where cognitive-behavioral approaches have proven ineffective or in cases where agoraphobia has developed following trauma.

Many people with anxiety disorders benefit from joining a self-help or support group (telephone conference-call support groups or online support groups being of particular help for completely housebound individuals). Sharing problems and achievements with others, as well as sharing various self-help tools, are common activities in these groups. In particular, stress management techniques and various kinds of meditation practices and visualization techniques can help people with anxiety disorders calm themselves and may enhance the effects of therapy, as can service to others, which can distract from the self-absorption that tends to go with anxiety problems. Also, preliminary evidence suggests aerobic exercise may have a calming effect. Since caffeine, certain illicit drugs, and even some over-the-counter cold medications can aggravate the symptoms of anxiety disorders, they should be avoided.

Certain dietary and herbal supplements claim to have calming and anti-anxiety benefits. Before one takes any of these for agoraphobia, should talk with the health care provider. Although these supplements are available without a prescription, they still pose possible health risks.

Yoga: Regular Yoga exercise with meditation under an expart improves self confidance and may get rid of Agoraphobia.

Prevention:
There’s no sure way to prevent agoraphobia. However, anxiety tends to increase the more you avoid situations that you fear. If you start to have mild fears about going places that are safe, try to practice going to those places over and over again before your fear becomes overwhelming. If this is too hard to do on your own, ask a family member or friend to go with you, or seek professional help.

If you experience anxiety going places or have panic attacks, get treatment as soon as possible. Get help early to keep symptoms from getting worse. Anxiety, like many other mental health conditions, can be harder to treat if you wait.

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:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agoraphobia
https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/agoraphobia/symptoms-causes/syc-20355987

Categories
Ailmemts & Remedies

Mad Cow Disease

Other Names: Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) or Bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE)

Description:
Mad cow disease is a degenerative brain disorder that leads to dementia and, ultimately, death. Symptoms of the disease is dementia-like brain disorders, such as Alzheimer’s. But mad cow disease usually progresses much more rapidly.

It captured public attention in the 1990s when some people in the United Kingdom developed a form of the disease after eating meat from diseased cattle.
Mad cow disease is thought to be due to an infection by a misfolded protein, known as a prion. Cattle are believed to have been infected by being fed meat-and-bone meal (MBM) that contained the remains of other cattle who spontaneously developed the disease or scrapie-infected sheep products. The outbreak increased throughout the United Kingdom due to the practice of feeding meat-and-bone meal to young calves of dairy cows. Cases are suspected based on symptoms and confirmed by examination of the brain. Cases are classified as classic or atypical, with the latter divided into H- and L types. It is a type of transmissible spongiform encephalopathy (TSE).

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The time between infection and onset of symptoms is generally four to five years. Time from onset of symptoms to death is generally weeks to months. Spread to humans is believed to result in variant Creutzfeldt–Jakob disease (vCJD)

Although serious, CJD is rare, and vCJD is the least common form. Worldwide, there is an estimated one case of CJD diagnosed per million people each year, most often in older adults.

Symptoms:
Mad cow disease is marked by rapid mental deterioration, usually within a few months. Initial signs and symptoms typically include:

  • Personality changes
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Memory loss
  • Impaired thinking
  • Blurred vision or blindness
  • Insomnia
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Sudden, jerky movements

As the disease progresses, mental symptoms worsen. Most people eventually lapse into a coma. Heart failure, respiratory failure, pneumonia or other infections are generally the cause of death. Death usually occurs within a year.

In people with the rarer vCJD, psychiatric symptoms may be more prominent in the beginning, with dementia — the loss of the ability to think, reason and remember — developing later in the illness. In addition, this variant affects people at a younger age than classic CJD does and appears to have a slightly longer duration — 12 to 14 months.

Causes:
Mad cow disease is an infectious disease believed to be due to a misfolded protein, known as a prion. Cattle are believed to have been infected from being fed meat and bone meal (MBM) that contained the remains of other cattle who spontaneously developed the disease or scrapie-infected sheep products. The outbreak increased throughout the United Kingdom due to the practice of feeding meat-and-bone meal to young calves of dairy cows.

Prions replicate by causing other normally folded proteins of the same type to take on their misfolded shape, which then go on to do the same, leading to an exponential chain reaction. Eventually, the prions aggregate into an alpha helical, beta pleated sheet, which is thought to be toxic to brain cells.

The agent is not destroyed even if the beef or material containing it is cooked or heat-treated. Transmission can occur when healthy animals come in contact with tainted tissues from others with the disease. In the brain, the agent causes native cellular prion protein to deform into the misfolded state, which then goes on to deform further prion protein in an exponential cascade. This results in protein aggregates, which then form dense plaque fibers. Brain cells begin to die off in massive numbers, eventually leading to the microscopic appearance of “holes” in the brain, degeneration of physical and mental abilities, and ultimately death.

The agent can be transmitted to humans by eating food contaminated with it. The highest risk to humans is believed to be from eating food contaminated with the brain, spinal cord, or digestive tract though any tissue may be involved.

However, “classic”mad cow disease hasn’t been linked to contaminated beef.

Diagnosis:
Diagnosis of mad cow disease continues to be a practical problem. It has an incubation period of months to years, during which no signs are noticed, though the pathway of converting the normal brain prion protein (PrP) into the toxic, disease-related PrPSc form has started. At present, virtually no way is known to detect PrPSc reliably except by examining post mortem brain tissue using neuropathological and immunohistochemical methods. Accumulation of the abnormally folded PrPSc form of PrP is a characteristic of the disease, but it is present at very low levels in easily accessible body fluids such as blood or urine. Researchers have tried to develop methods to measure PrPSc, but no methods for use in materials such as blood have been accepted fully.[by whom?]

The traditional method of diagnosis relies on histopathological examination of the medulla oblongata of the brain, and other tissues, post mortem. Immunohistochemistry can be used to demonstrate prion protein accumulation.

In 2010, a team from New York described detection of PrPSc even when initially present at only one part in a hundred billion (10?11) in brain tissue. The method combines amplification with a novel technology called surround optical fiber immunoassay and some specific antibodies against PrPSc. After amplifying and then concentrating any PrPSc, the samples are labelled with a fluorescent dye using an antibody for specificity and then finally loaded into a microcapillary tube. This tube is placed in a specially constructed apparatus so it is totally surrounded by optical fibres to capture all light emitted once the dye is excited using a laser. The technique allowed detection of PrPSc after many fewer cycles of conversion than others have achieved, substantially reducing the possibility of artifacts, as well as speeding up the assay. The researchers also tested their method on blood samples from apparently healthy sheep that went on to develop scrapie. The animals’ brains were analysed once any signs became apparent. The researchers could, therefore, compare results from brain tissue and blood taken once the animals exhibited signs of the diseases, with blood obtained earlier in the animals’ lives, and from uninfected animals. The results showed very clearly that PrPSc could be detected in the blood of animals long before the signs appeared. After further development and testing, this method could be of great value in surveillance as a blood- or urine-based screening test for BSE or mad cow disease.

Treatmen:
No effective treatment exists for mad cow disease or Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease or any of its variants. A number of drugs have been tested and have not shown benefits. For that reason, doctors focus on alleviating pain and other symptoms and on making people with these diseases as comfortable as possible.

Prevention:
A ban on feeding meat and bone meal to cattle has resulted in a strong reduction in cases in countries where the disease has been present. In disease-free countries, control relies on import control, feeding regulations, and surveillance measures.

In UK and US slaughterhouses, the brain, spinal cord, trigeminal ganglia, intestines, eyes, and tonsils from cattle are classified as specified risk materials, and must be disposed of appropriately.

An enhanced BSE-related feed ban is in effect in both the United States and Canada to help improve prevention and elimination of BSE.

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:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bovine_spongiform_encephalopathy
https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/creutzfeldt-jakob-disease/symptoms-causes/syc-20371226