Tag Archives: Itch

Jewelweed ( Impatiens )

Botanical Name: Impatiens aurea (MUHL.), Impatiens biflora (WALT.)
Family: Balsaminaceae
Genus: Impatiens
Kingdom: Planta
Order: Ericales

Synonyms: Wild Balsam. Balsam-weed. Impatiens pallida. Pale-touch-me-not. Spottedtouch-me-not. Slipperweed. Silverweed. Wild Lady’s Slipper. Speckled Jewels. Wild Celandine. Quick-in-the-hand.

Common Names: Impatiens, Jewelweed, Touch-me-not, Snapweed

Part Used: Herb.
Habitat: Members of the genus Impatiens are found widely distributed in the north temperate zone and in South Africa, but the majority are natives of the mountains of tropical Asia and Africa. It grows in lowlying, damp, rather rich soil, beside streams and in similar damp localities.
Description:
Some species are annual plants and produce flowers from early summer until the first frost, while perennial species, found in milder climates, can flower all year. Regardless of their lifespan, the largest impatiens grow up to about 2 meters (about 7 feet) tall, but most are less than half as tall. The stems somewhat translucent, the foliage showing a brilliant silvery surface when immersed in water, which will not adhere to the surface. The leaves are entire and shiny; their upperside has a thick, water-repellent cuticula that gives them a greasy feel. Particularly on the underside of the leaves, tiny air bubbles are trapped over and under the leaf surface, giving them a silvery sheen that becomes pronounced when they are held under water.They are thin, ovate oval, more or less toothed, of a tender green colour.

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The flowers, up to 2–3 cm, around 1 inch long, in most species are made up by a shoe- or horn-shaped spur for the most part, with at least the upper petals insignificant by comparison; some have a prominent labellum though, allowing pollinators to land. Others, like the busy lizzie (I. walleriana), have flattened flowers with large petals and just a tiny spur that appear somewhat similar to those of violets (Viola), an unrelated genus. A few Impatiens species have flowers intermediate between the two basic types.The oblong capsules of both species when ripe explode under the slightest disturbance, scattering the seeds widely. Most of the popular names refer to this peculiarity, others to the shape of the flowers.

The slipper-shaped, yellow flowers, in bloom from July to September, have long recurved tails, those of the first-named species being of a uniform pale-yellow, those of the second species, orange-yellow, crowded with dark spots, hence its common name of Spotted-touch-me-not.

Constituents: Impatiens contain 2-methoxy-1,4-naphthoquinone, an anti-inflammatory and fungicide naphthoquinone that is an active ingredient in some formulations of Preparation H.
Medicinal Uses:
North American impatiens have been used as herbal remedies for the treatment of bee stings, insect bites, and stinging nettle (Urtica dioica) rashes. They are also used after poison ivy (Toxicodendron radicans) contact to prevent a rash from developing. The efficacy of orange jewelweed (I. capensis) and yellow jewelweed (I. pallida) in preventing poison ivy contact dermatitis has been studied, with conflicting results. A study in 1958 found that Impatiens biflora was an effective alternative to standard treatment for dermatitis caused by contact with sumac, while later studies found that the species had no antipruritic effects after the rash has developed. Researchers reviewing these contradictions state that potential reason for these conflicts include the method of preparation and timing of application. A 2012 study found that while an extract of orange jewelweed and garden jewelweed (I. balsamina) was not effective in reducing contact dermatitis, a mash of the plants applied topically decreased it.

Impatiens glandulifera is one of the Bach flower remedies, flower extracts used as herbal remedies for physical and emotional problems. It is included in the “Rescue Remedy” or “Five Flower Remedy”, a potion touted as a treatment for acute anxiety and which is supposed to be protective in stressful situations. Studies have found no difference between the effect of the potion and that of a placebo.

All Impatiens taste bitter and seem to be slightly toxic upon ingestion, causing intestinal ailments like vomiting and diarrhea. The toxic compounds have not been identified but are probably the same as those responsible for the bitter taste, likely might be glycosides or alkaloids.

?-Parinaric acid, a polyunsaturated fatty acid discovered in the seeds of the makita tree (Atuna racemosa racemosa), is together with linolenic acid the predominant component of the seed fat of garden jewelweed (I. balsamina), and perhaps other species of Impatiens. This is interesting from a phylogenetic perspective, because the makita tree is a member of the Chrysobalanaceae in a lineage of eudicots entirely distinct from the balsams.

Certain jewelweeds, including the garden jewelweed contain the naphthoquinone lawsone, a dye that is also found in henna (Lawsonia inermis) and is also the hair coloring and skin coloring agent in mehndi. In ancient China, Impatiens petals mashed with rose and orchid petals and alum were used as nail polish: leaving the mixture on the nails for some hours colored them pink or reddish.

Impatiens has been listed as one of the 38 plants that are used to prepare Bach flower remedies, a kind of alternative medicine promoted for its effect on health. However according to Cancer Research UK, “there is no scientific evidence to prove that flower remedies can control, cure or prevent any type of disease, including cancer”

Other Uses:  A yellow dye has been made from the flowers.

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

Resources:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impatiens
http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/j/jewelw08.html

Flaky Scalp

Introduction:
The loss of skin cells from the scalp is a normal part of the life cycle of skin cells.Every day we lose dead skin cells from our scalps. When more are lost than normal, they clump together forming the white or grey flakes called dandruff.  However, excessive flaking of the scalp, or dandruff, is a common cosmetic problem experienced by millions of people. Dandruff is not contagious and is normally not a serious problem. Some cases of excessive dandruff accompanied by intense itching and patches of flaky skin on the face or elsewhere are actually a form of eczema referred to as seborrheic eczema.

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English: Picture of Seborrhoeic Dermatitis.

English: Picture of Seborrhoeic Dermatitis. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Dandruff can form when the scalp is too dry or too oily. A fungus called pityrosporum ovale, which lives naturally on the scalp, has been implicated in the development of dandruff. Excess production of sebum, the natural oil secreted from glands in the skin, fuels the growth of this fungus. This helps to explain why dandruff often starts in puberty when hormone changes occur and why people with oily scalps suffer more.

Dandruff is believed to run in families. Diets that are too salty, spicy or sugary and accompanied by too much alcohol make it worse, as can stress and changes in climate.

Nutritional deficiencies, such as a lack of essential fatty acids or vitamin B, may cause dandruff.

Seborrhoeic eczema causes itchy and flaky patches on the scalp. This tends to be more severe than simple dandruff because the skin and glands become inflamed. The flakes are often greasier and more yellow in colour and can also affect the eyebrows, ears, face and upper body.

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Symptoms:
People with flaky, itchy scalp will notice dead skin cells on the scalp that look like white or gray flakes. Some people may misdiagnosis the flakes as dandruff, but they tend to be larger than regular dandruff flakes.

Red Scalp..…..
With flaky, itchy scalp, the scalp can become red and irritated. Pain may or may not be associated with a swollen, red scalp.

Itchy Scalp….
As indicated in the name, flaky, itchy scalp is accompanied by an itchy feeling. Avoid scratching, as this can worsen the condition.

TScalp..ense ….
The scalp can become tight and tense. You may experience the feeling that all the blood is rushing to your head.

Dull Hair
With flaky, itchy scalp, the hair becomes dull and lifeless. This is due to a lack of moisture reaching the scalp.

Treatment:
Anti-dandruff shampoos are the mainstay of treatment for simple dandruff. It’s usually trial and error finding the one that works for you.

For more stubborn dandruff or seborrhoeic eczema, selenium, zinc, coal tar in coconut oil or salicylic acid can be successful. Scalp preparations contain various combinations of these. Be careful when using tar, however, as it can discolour fair hair and bed linen.

Antifungal shampoos containing ketoconazole work well for dandruff and seborrhoeic eczema. They need to be used a few times a week. Be patient: they can take up to six weeks to work.

All these treatments are available from the pharmacist without a prescription.

You may click to see :
*Simple Home Remedy for Flaky scalp….
*Ayurvrdic Treatment of  Flaky Scalp

When to go to Doctor?
If your scalp isn’t getting better with these treatments, or if it’s red, inflamed or painful, a different treatment may be needed.

Steroid lotion or mousse is used for severe seborrhoeic eczema. It’s also used to treat psoriasis, which not only affects the elbows and knees, but also the scalp.

Psoriasis occurs when new skin cells are made too quickly. The build up of these cells creates red areas covered with thick, scaly, silvery-looking patches, which can be very uncomfortable and itchy.

Prevention:
When shampooing, massage your scalp and don’t scratch it. Rinse your hair well, ideally twice with every shampoo. The scalp is very sensitive, so take care with hair products that can dry and irritate it.

Alternate your usual shampoo with a dandruff shampoo. If you find the flakes make an unwelcome return, don’t panic. This often happens, just switch to a new shampoo.

Make sure your diet contains enough vitamins E, B6 and B12, selenium and zinc. Flaxseed oil is also said to help prevent dandruff and can be taken in liquid or capsule form.

It’s a myth that dandruff is:

•Infectious
•Makes you go bald sooner
•Only affects dark-haired people
•Means you don’t wash your hair enough

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.bbc.co.uk/health/physical_health/conditions/flakyscalp1.shtml
http://www.wrongdiagnosis.com/sym/flaky_scalp.htm

http://www.themedicalplus.com/2010/01/28/scalp-health-zincplex/

http://www.ehow.com/facts_5007089_symptoms-flaky-itchy-scalp.html

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Anal Itching (Pruritus Ani)


 

Definition:
Anal itching is itching around your anus — the canal that’s the outlet for your rectum. The itch, located in your anus or on the skin just around your anus, is often intense and may be accompanied by a strong urge to scratch. You may find anal itching to be an embarrassing and uncomfortable situation.

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Anal itching, also known as itchy bottom, pruritus ani or anusitis, is irritation and sometimes inflammation of the anus – located at the exit of the rectum.

Itching severity varies and is usually exacerbated by such factors as type of clothing worn, whether the patient is seated or upright, moisture levels, pressure and general rubbing of the anal area. Anal itching can become so severe that some people find it intolerable, describing the sensation as one of incredible burning and soreness.

Numerous factors may cause anal itching to be more intense — including moisture, abrasion caused by your clothing and the pressure of sitting.

Anal itching is a common problem that many people have experienced. Don’t be afraid to talk with your doctor about this condition. With proper treatment and self-care measures, most people can achieve complete relief from anal itching.

Anal itching is not a disease in itself, but rather a sign or symptom. In the majority of cases, there is an underlying cause or condition which causes the anal itching. However, sometimes the underlying cause is never found.

Regardless of the cause, virtually every type of anal itching sign or symptom can be successfully treated.

Most humans and other animals sometimes scratch their bottoms. For a person with pruritus ani (anal itching) the urge to scratch around the anus is very strong and persistent. Although the urge may occur at any time of day or night, it is more common after going to the toilet; especially if stools are liquidy. Some patients say the itching becomes more intense just prior to falling asleep in bed at night.

Things that set off anal itching or exacerbate it are:
#Anxiety
#Heat
#Mental stress
Moisture
#Soiling (defecating or pooing in one’s clothing)
#Some clothing or bedding materials, such as wool
#Having nowhere private to go into nearby

According to Medilexicon’s medical dictionary, pruritus ani is “itching of varying intensity at the anus; may be paroxysmal or constant, associated with seborrheic candidiasis or moniliasis, with irritated and enlarged hemorrhoidal veins, or may occur independently of any cutaneous lesions in association with systemic disease.”

Symptoms:-

The symptoms of anal itching are self explanatory – “itching of the anus and the anal area”. The patient generally experiences:
#Burning
#Intense itching
#Soreness
#Pain (sometimes)

Symptoms may be short-term or persistent. Some individuals may experience irritation that is so intense that the desire to scratch must be satisfied there and then – this can be bothersome problem. For some people, the irritation is so intense that the urge to scratch is both irresistible and embarrassing.

Causes:-

Most cases of anal itching are caused by a harmless problem. Occasionally, however, anal itching can also be a sign of more-serious medical issues. Possible causes of anal itching include:

#Skin type – if the skin around the anal area is too dry there is a significantly greater risk of developing persistent and sometimes severe anal itching.

#Moisture levels – if moisture levels around the anal area are high, the chances of having anal itching are raised. High moisture levels can be the result of several different factors, including over-sweating, allergies, diarrhea, very wet and sticky stools, inappropriate clothing, fecal incontinence, and not having access to toilet paper or any means of cleaning oneself.

#Abrasive rubbing – cleaning your bottom with toilet paper can aggravate anal itching if the sensitive skin area is rubbed too hard, for too long, or too often.

#Excessive washing. Excessive wiping with dry, harsh toilet paper or excessive scrubbing with harsh soaps can cause or aggravate anal itching. Failure to rinse away the soap completely also may cause irritation.

#Some chemicals
– some substances found in some soaps, douches, laundry detergents and body sprays may irritate the skin and cause anal itching.

#Type of toilet paper – the texture and substances added to toilet paper may irritate and inflame the skin in the anal area, resulting in itching.

#Some foods some people may develop anal itching after consuming certain types of hot sauces or spices. The irritation may occur when the food is anywhere in the digestive system, even when stools are exiting through the anus.
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#Some medicines – some medications, such as antibiotics can cause diarrhea, which can cause anal itching.

#Laxative abuse – if laxatives are used inappropriately and the patient has diarrhea or very liquidy stools, the probability of anal itching occurring  becomes much greater.

#Hemorrhoids – when the veins around the anus or in the rectum are swollen or inflamed the patient has hemorrhoids . Hemorrhoids can occur both inside and above the inside of the anus. They can also appear externally, under the skin of the anus. People with hemorrhoids commonly suffer from anal itching.

#STDs (sexually transmitted diseases) – also known as STIs (sexually transmitted infections) cause anal as well as genital itching.

#Parasites- some parasites may cause anal itching. Parasites are more commonly a cause of anal itching in tropical countries, or tropical regions of countries.


#Some yeast infections –
this generally affects women. Yeast infections which affect the genital area, may spread to the anus, causing intense irritation.

#Forced bowel movement – if the stool is dry and large and the individual heaves and still pushes it through, there is a risk of an anal abrasion (small tear in the anus). A deeper tear is called an anal fissure, which may also cause itching.

#Food irritants.
Anal itching may be the result of irritating chemicals in some foods, such as those found in spices and hot sauces. Similarly, some foods may directly or indirectly irritate your anus as they exit your colon. Common culprits include chocolate, alcohol, tomatoes, nuts and popcorn. Consuming certain beverages, including milk or caffeinated drinks, may cause some people to experience diarrhea followed by anal itching.

#Medications. Anal itching may be a side effect of certain medications, including some antibiotics, that can cause frequent diarrhea.

#Overuse of laxatives. Excessive or improper use of laxatives can lead to chronic diarrhea and the risk of anal irritation and itching.

#Skin disorders.
Common skin problems — such as psoriasis, seborrhea and eczema — can involve and irritate the area in and around your anus.

#Yeast infections.
This common infection, which usually affects women, can irritate your genital and anal areas.

#Anal abrasions and fissures. An anal abrasion is a small tear in your anus, usually caused by forced bowel movements through a tight anus. An anal fissure

is a deeper tear. Both conditions can cause anal itching, as well as painful bowel movements and bleeding.

#Anal tumors. Rarely, benign or cancerous tumors in or around the anus may be a cause of anal itching.

#Other causes. Anal itching may be related to anxiety or stress. Sometimes, the cause remains undetermined.

Although anal itching is almost never a problem of cleanliness, your own actions may contribute to the problem. Whatever the cause of anal itching, your natural reaction is to scratch the area. But scratching worsens the problem by removing superficial layers of skin. In addition, the natural tendency in response to an irritation is to wash the area frequently with soap and a washcloth. However, excessive washing can aggravate the condition by removing your skin’s natural protective oils.


Diagnosis:

Doctor may be able to diagnose the cause of your itching simply by asking you questions about your symptoms.

Click for Anal eatching Diagnosis Throgh question & answer:

If the cause of your itching isn’t obvious, your doctor may refer you to a skin specialist (dermatologist) or a doctor who specializes in treating rectal and anal problems (proctologist) for further evaluation. A rectal exam may be all that’s required for you to get an answer — and a solution — to a very uncomfortable problem.

Diagnosis can also be made just from a rectal exam. This will involve the doctor checking the anal area for any skin that is inflamed, cracked or bleeding. An internal exam may then be required; the doctor inserts his/her finger into the patient’s anus. Doing this can help determine what is causing the anal itching as well as eliminating more serious conditions, such as colorectal cancer. Sometimes a more detailed exam of the digestive system, such as a colonoscopy or a proctoscopy may be required.

Other tests, such as proctoscopy or colonoscopy to view more of the digestive tract, are sometimes needed to identify an underlying cause of anal itching. However, the precise cause of the itching may never be identified.


Treatment:

Treatment of anal itching depends on the cause of the problem. It may include self-care measures, changes to your diet, treatment of infections or, rarely, surgery to correct an underlying problem.

Most of the time it is easy to  treat  Anal itching  and   treatment responds very well. However, this may not stop it from recurring in the future. The type of treatment chosen is dependent on the cause of the anal itching. The various methods of treatment may include:

#Anal cleanliness/dryness – When suffering from anal itching, keeping your anus clean and dry is very important. Each time you pass a stool and before going to bed it is advised that the skin around the anus is carefully cleaned using water and then dried thoroughly.

#When drying, be gentle,
avoid vigorous rubbing as this could further irritate the area. Another option is using a hair dryer on low heat or patting with a dry pad.

#Be careful when washing with soap
– When washing the skin around the anus avoid perfumed soap, try using one which is mild and unscented, and be sure to rinse away all the soap with water.

#When trav elling
-The above options may not be possible when on the move or away from home. In this case try using damp toilet tissues to clean yourself.

#If the area keeps getting moist due to sweat – Putting a cotton tissue in your underwear will absorb the sweat/moisture and reduce itching.

#Avoiding consumption of certain foods
– There are a number of food types that can make the anal itching worse. If you notice the urge to itch getting worse after eating a particular kind of food, you should try to cut down on it.

Below is a list of foods that are known to make anal itching worse:

*Chocolate
*Citrus fruits
*Coffee
*Dairy Products
*Nuts
*Spicy food
*Tomatoes
*Too much liquid consumption


#Things you can do yourself – There are some other ways you can keep control of your anal itching symptoms. These are as follows:

*Use colorless plain toilet paper
*Make sure you have a shower every day
*Wear underwear that is made of cotton and not too tight.
*Be sure to wear clean underwear every day.
*Trim your fingernails regularly; scratching the anal area with long fingernails can damage the skin. Ideally scratching the area should be avoided altogether, as it can make the itching worse.


#Prescription Medication
– Doctors can prescribe medication to help relieve the symptoms.

*Creams – Doctors can also prescribe creams or ointments.

*Corticosteroids – Patients with anal itching where the anal area is tender and inflamed may be prescribed a short course of corticosteroids (less than 7 days). It is applied onto the skin around the anus and will relieve the itching impulse and inflammation. It is known on occasion to make the itching worse, if this is the case it you should stop taking it and contact your doctor.

*Antihistamines – This is to be taken at night and can alleviate your itching and help you sleep.

*Treating the underlying cause – If the anal itching is the result of an underlying cause, the doctor will nead to treat that first. In most cases, if that underlying cause is effectively treated, the anal itching will resolve itself.

With proper treatment, most people experience relief from anal itching in less than a week. Anal itching that continues for more than six weeks needs to be evaluated carefully  by your doctor.

Prevention:
Prevention of anal itching mainly involves washing properly and avoiding irritants. If you already have anal itching, try these self-care measures:

#Cleanse gently. Wash the area in the morning, at night and immediately after bowel movements. But don’t scrub and avoid using soap. Instead, use a wet washcloth, wet bathroom tissue, unscented flushable bathroom wipes, cotton balls moistened with water, unscented baby wipes or a small squeeze bottle of water to cleanse the area.

#Dry thoroughly. After cleansing, pat the area dry with toilet paper or a towel. Or dry thoroughly with a hair dryer. Once dry, place a piece of cotton gauze against the anus to help keep the area dry. Replace the cotton as necessary. Nonmedicated talcum or cornstarch powder also can help keep the area dry.

#Use over-the-counter treatments correctly. Apply OTC creams sparingly. Don’t use these treatments unless directed by your doctor. For some people, creams or ointments may cause more irritation, and they may mask a persistent problem.

#Don’t scratch.
Scratching further irritates your skin and leads to persistent inflammation. If you can’t tolerate the itching, apply a cold compress to the area or take a lukewarm bath to find some immediate relief. Keep busy to distract yourself from scratching.

#Switch tissue. The skin around your anus may be sensitive to bathroom tissue that contains dyes or perfumes. Use unbleached, unscented tissue. You may want to use tissue that’s moistened or made extra soft for comfort, or unscented flushable bathroom wipes.

#Wear cotton underwear and loose clothing. This helps keep the area dry. Avoid wearing pantyhose and other tightfitting garments because these can trap moisture. Change your underwear daily and whenever it’s soiled.

#Avoid irritants. Avoid bubble baths and genital deodorants. Cut back or avoid beverages or foods that you know irritate your anal area. Avoid overuse of laxatives that increase diarrhea and the risk of anal irritation and itching.

Click to see->Home Remedies for Anal Itch and Rectal Burning.

Related articles:

Seeing someone scratch an itch ‘makes you itchy too’

Itching study ‘finds chemical that makes us scratch’

Itching and scratching a ‘vicious cycle’, say researchers

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/anal-itching/DS00453
http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/168728.php

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Protect Your Skin from Infections

With the onset of the winter season large number of patients suffering from skin infection are visiting the OPD (Outdoor Patients  Department) of the Hospital these days.

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According to Sushil Chandra, head of Skin department (HOD) at Ganesh Shankar Vidyarthi Memorial (GSVM) Medical College, “The cases of scabies, eczema and other fungal infections are on the rise due to changing weather. Approximately 25 per cent of the patients coming here are suffering from seasonal skin allergy.”

Scabies is a common skin infection that causes small itchy blisters due to tiny mites. The rash appears on head, face, neck and palms. Itching is the most common symptom which tends to become worse during night. Continuous scratching leads to bacterial infections and sometimes pus formation also,” he sad.

“The infection is contagious and is usually transmitted through skin-to-skin contact. The infection spreads more easily in crowded places,” he added.

About eczema, Dr S K Arora, professor in Skin department at GSVM College said that it normally occurs due to dryness. He said, “With the onset of winter season, blood supply to the skin decreases which affects the secretion of sebum (a kind of oil which keeps skin moist) from sebaceous glands. A cycle of itching and scratching begins which prolongs the xerotic eczema.”

About the preventive measures, Dr Arora said, “Scratching makes the skin infection worse. It can also lead to further bacterial infection if you break the skin. It is therefore, better to keep the nails short so that there are less chances of harming yourself accidentally by scratching with dirty fingernails. One should also use moisturiser and coconut oil regularly to keep the skin moist. Drink a lot of water to keep the body moisturised from within and take a bath daily.”

Source:The Times Of India

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Some Health Quaries & Answers

Q: I have male pattern baldness and want to correct it by some cosmetic procedure. I am in my twenties and not married yet. The baldness makes me look older.

A: There have been rapid strides in the treatment of baldness. Tired of applying minoxidil daily — which is often unsuccessful — people are increasingly turning to surgical solutions. Hair can be transplanted from the sides and back of the head to the front by micro hair transplantation. This is only an outpatient procedure, with local anesthesia. Otherwise a procedure called scalp reduction is used where strips of bald skin are surgically removed.

Phantom swelling :-

Q: I have a swelling in one scrotum which appears when I stand up and disappears when I lie down. This phantom swelling is not painful.

A: It looks like you have a “reducible inguinal hernia”. A part of the contents of the abdomen is sliding into an area called the inguinal canal. As long as the to and fro movement is free, there will be no pain. However, the contents can suddenly get stuck. And this is painful and dangerous. Before this occurs, consult a general surgeon who will surgically repair the hernia.

Jock itch:-     

Q: I have uncontrollable itching and redness in my groin area. I sometimes have to leave the room in the middle of a meeting to scratch.

A: It sounds like you have “Jock itch” or Tinea cruris, a fungal infection of the skin in the groin. This is more common in men and aggravated by diabetes and obesity. It can be treated by bathing twice a day using a soap such as Neko, drying the area well and then applying anti-fungal creams like terbafine or clotrimazole (which contain no steroid). Clotrimazole powder can be applied after using the cream. The infection takes around two weeks to heal, but the application should be continued for about a week after that to prevent a recurrence. Avoid wearing many layers of clothing, change sweaty clothes immediately and dry yourself thoroughly after a bath. Steroids either applied or ingested aggravate the infection.

Irritating cough :-    


Q: I am on Enalapril for the treatment of my hypertension. Ever since I started this, I have had an irritating cough. No matter how many different antibiotics I take, nothing works.

A: Antibiotics will not help in a cough unless it is caused by a bacterial infection. A constant cough without fever is more likely to be due to an allergen. Avoid mosquito repellents (mats, coils and liquids), room fresheners, agarbattis and camphor. Sometimes Eenalapril too can cause a cough. Try having vitamin C (500mg), half a tablet in the morning and evening. This often cures the cough.

Fair baby……..

Q: I am getting married soon and I would like to have a fair baby. What can I do?

A: Instead of concentrating on skin colour, it makes more sense to think “how can I have a healthy baby?” All girls should be immunised against hepatitis B (three doses) and rubella (German measles) before marriage. They need to take folic acid (5mg) every day to prevent defects in the baby’s brain and spinal cord. Walking or jogging for 40 minutes a day will build up stamina and strength in the legs, both of which are required for normal childbirth.

Painful periods :-

Q: I have severe pain during periods. What can I do?

A: Dysmenorrhoea is the medical name for painful periods. Some women suffer more than others. The tendency to develop pain runs in families. To tackle this, have an ultrasound examination of the pelvis to make sure there is no correctable cause for the pain. If everything is normal, taking medication like Mefenemic acid (500mg) three times a day for the first two or three days brings relief.

Regular diarrhoea :-

Q: My daughter has bloody diarrhoea all the time. Her paediatrician has given her a seven-day course of metronidazole, an antibiotic, and a single dose of albendazole.

A: The diarrhoea may be because of milk allergy. This is common and often undiagnosed. Check her stool for reducing substances. If this is positive, you have hit the nail on the head. Then try stopping milk completely for 48 hours and see if there is an improvement.

You may click to see:->Understanding and Managing Acute Diarrhoea in Infants and Young Children………..

Itchy skin :-

Q: I itch and scratch all over my body after a bath. What can I do?

A: You can :—………

• Purchase a “water treatment softening device” and fit it to your bath water supply. Fitting it for the whole house is expensive.

• Add a tablespoon of coconut oil to the bath water.

• Apply a mixture of five parts of coconut oil, five parts of sesame oil and one part of olive oil to your body. Wait for 10 minutes and then bathe.

• Use a mild soap like Dove

• Apply baby oil to the whole body after your bath.

Source: The Telegraph (Kolkata, India)