Leech Therapy

The use of leeches in medical treatment. Once used as an almost universal cure, leeches were largely abandoned by medicine but in the second half of the 20th century refound a role. That role is largely in plastic and reconstructive surgery. Leeches can assist, for example, in the reattachment of severed body parts such as a finger, hand, toe, leg, ear, nose or the scalp.

The surgeon usually has little difficult connecting the two ends of small arteries, since arteries are thick-walled and relatively simple to suture. However, veins are thin-walled, fragile, and difficult to suture. The surgeon may thus get blood flowing in the reattached arteries but not in the veins. With the venous circulation severely compromised, the blood going to the reattached body part becomes congested and stagnant. The reattached part turns blue and lifeless and is at risk of being lost. It is then that leeches are summoned to treat the threatening venous insufficiency, but only when there is adequate arterial flow.


Contemporary leech therapy was pioneered by the surgeons, M. Derganc and F. Zdravic, who published a paper in 1960 describing the use of leeches to assist in tissue flap surgery — surgery in which a flap of skin is freed or rotated from an adjacent body area to cover a defect or injury. Their rationale behind this use of leeches was based on a unique property of the leech bite, namely, the creation of a puncture wound that bleeds for hours. For information related to this property of leeches, click to see: Hirudin.

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Amount of Blood patient loose in Leech Threapy:

With a treatment with 8 leech the blutverlust for the patient is including to the Nachbluten with approx. 200 to 350 ml blood. “a small Egel sucks 2 – the quantity doubles itself 3 g, more largely to 30 g, on average by the postoperative hemorrhage. Generally one counts on an average value of 20 – is limited 30 g total blood loss per leech and to setting 4 – 12 copies in a meeting ”

Leech bite is more or less painless:
The bite of a leechs is felt by the patients like Brennesseln or mosquito passes. The bite of the leechs is not painful thus. By the histamine-similar substances it can come in the process of the treatment to easy itching, similarly as with an insect bite. The leech saliva is filled with a chemical that contains a painkiller, which stops you from feeling the bite. The saliva also has a chemical, which keeps the blood from clotting.

Leech Therapy is done on Patients with an unsatisfactory blood circulation:
Is by its blood-diluting and container-extending effect the leech the ideal Therapeut for blood circulation disturbances. With multiplicity of diseases there is a connection with an unsatisfactory blood circulation. Clearly on the hand all diseases lie with our container system are connected like Thrombose, cramp veins, Haemorrhoiden, cardiac infarct, impact accumulations, calcifying the containers, Tinnitus.
At the same time it could be stated that the leech therapy can cause an improvement also with pain. Positive effects could be determined with rheumatism, Arthrose, volume disk problems, pulling, bruises, muscular pains or muscle injuries.

How Leech Therapy is accomplished:
1. Wash hands.
2. Select appropriate personal protective equipment (gloves).
3. Cleanse area with normal saline soaked sterile gauze.
4. Apply leeches with gloved hand on tweezers.
5. Allow leech to attach large posterior end first and direct smaller head end to the desired site. ( Leeches can be loaded into an empty syringe without a plunger “rear end first” and the open end of syringe is placed over the desired site to ensure proper placement. )
6. Apply the other leeches if neseseary.
7. Monitor leeches until they fill with blood (10-20 minutes). Usually the leech falls off itself (if not use salt. Leeches do not like salt and will drop off)

Assistance if the leech once not to bite wants:
With certain site conditions leech bite more badly
*with cold skin
*with smokers
*with perfume-pure
*with older humans
Remedy is possible through warms up and cleans the skin. Further measures those are helpful the skin soften and the blood circulation promote. If the leech does not want to bite at all, there is the possibility the skin with a needle to puncture still.

Side Effects of Leech Therapy:
With adequate execution of the leech therapy and attention of all contraindications heavy side effects arise very rarely. Local reactions is possible in the proximity of the point of bite, also cycle weakness occurs relatively more frequently. During a cramp vein treatment with that the leech directly on the Vene is set, gives it naturally a longer postoperative hemorrhage phase. A longer postoperative hemorrhage can put on however at any time by an appropriate druckverbandes to be stopped.

Leeches are being used in The Treatment because:
Leeches can relieve blood pooling around a muscle or skin flap better than drugs or other treatments. They are used to keep blood flow in muscle, skin and fat tissue that has been surgically moved from one part of your body to another. These tissues are also called flaps .
Why is leech therapy is used instead of other medical treatment?
In some cases, leeches do a better job by removing pooled blood than any other medical therapy
What are the benefits of leech treatment?
The benefits of treatment are not only the amount of blood that the leech removes but the anti-blood clotting enzymes in their saliva that allow blood flow from the area where they have been

The biggest barrier to leech therapy:
It has been the reaction that people have when they are told about the possible use of leeches in their care. Many people are afraid of these creatures crawling on their body.

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Ailmemts & Remedies

Double Vision (Diplopia)

If you see two of whatever you are looking at simultaneously, you may have a condition known as double vision, also referred to as diplopia. Double and blurred vision are often thought to be the same, but they are not. In blurred vision, a single image appears unclear. In double vision, two images are seen at the same time, creating understandable confusion for anyone who has it.

click & see the pictures

.Click to enlarge->.Photo showing how a patient experiences

Double Vision (3OH!3 song)
Double Vision (3OH!3 song) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

People with double vision see two images of one object. the images are separate but often clearly focused. The disorder can be due to a number of causes and it usually disappears when one eye is closed. You should consult your ophthalmologist immediately if you start to experience double vision because it may indicate that you have a serious underlying disorder.

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It is commonly known as Diplopia or Double vision. It is the simultaneous perception of two images of a single object. These images may be displaced horizontally, vertically, or diagonally (i.e. both vertically and horizontally) in relation to each other.

Binocular diplopia or double vision
Binocular diplopia is double vision arising as a result of the misalignment of the two eyes relative to each other, such as occurs in Esotropia or Exotropia. In such a case whilst the fovea of one eye is directed at the object of regard, the fovea of the other is directed elsewhere, and the image of the object of regard falls on an extra-foveal area of retina.

The brain calculates the ‘visual direction’ of an object based upon the position of its image relative to the fovea. Images falling on the fovea are seen as being directly ahead, whilst those falling on retina outside the fovea may be seen as above, below, right or left of straight ahead depending upon the area of retina stimulated. Thus, when the eyes are misaligned, the brain will perceive two images of one target object, as the target object simultaneously stimulates different, non-corresponding, retinal areas in either eye, thus producing double vision.

This correlation of particular areas of the retina in one eye with the same areas in the other is known as Retinal correspondence. This relationship also gives rise to an associated phenomenon of binocular diplopia, although one that is rarely noted by those experiencing diplopia: Because the fovea of one eye corresponds to the fovea of the other, images falling on the two foveas are ‘projected’ to the same point in space. Thus, when the eyes are misaligned, the brain will ‘project’ two different images in the same visual direction. This phenomenon is known as ‘Confusion’.

Double vision is dangerous to survival, therefore, the brain naturally guards against its occurrence. In an attempt to avoid double vision, the brain can sometimes ignore the image from one eye; a process known as suppression. The ability to suppress is to be found particularly in childhood when the brain is still developing. Thus, those with childhood strabismus almost never complain of diplopia whilst adults who develop strabismus almost always do. Whilst this ability to suppress might seem a wholly positive adaptation to strabismus, in the developing child this can prevent the proper development of vision in the affected eye resulting in amblyopia. Some adults are also able to suppress their diplopia, but their suppression is rarely as deep or as effective and takes longer to establish. They are not at risk of permanently damaging their vision as a result though. It can appear sometimes, therefore, that diplopia disappears without medical intervention. However, in some cases the cause of the double vision may still be present.

Monocular diplopia
More rarely, diplopia can also occur when viewing with only one eye; this is called monocular diplopia, or, where the patient perceives more than two images, monocular polyopia. In this case, the differential diagnosis of multiple image perception includes a structural defect within the eye, a lesion in the anterior visual cortex (rarely cause diplopia, more commonly polyopia or palinopsia) or non-organic conditions.

Temporary diplopia
Temporary diplopia can also be caused by intoxication from alcohol or head injuries, such as concussion. If temporary double vision does not resolve quickly, one should see an eye doctor immediately. It can also be a side effect of the anti-epileptic drugs Phenytoin and Zonisamide, and the anti-convulsant drug Lamotrigine, as well as the hypnotic drug Zolpidem and the dissociative drug Ketamine.

Voluntary diplopia

Some people are able to consciously uncouple their eyes, inducing double vision on purpose. These people do not consider their double vision dangerous or harmful, and may even consider it enjoyable. It makes viewing stereograms much easier.

There are two possible causes. Refractive. Light from an object is split into two images by a defect in the eye’s optical system. Cataracts might, for example, cause such a defect.
Failure of both eyes to point at the object being viewed, a condition referred to as “strabismus” or “squint”. In normal vision, both eyes look at the same object. The images seen by the two eyes are fused into a single picture by the brain. If the eyes do not point at the same object, the image seen by each eye is different and cannot be fused. The result is double vision. Why might eyes not point in the same direction? Possibly because of a defect in the muscles which control the movement of the eyes or in the control of these muscles through the nerves and brain.

The most common cause of double vision is weakness or paralysis of one of more of the muscles that control the movements of one eye. The movement of the affected eye is impaired, causing crossed eyes. Two different views of the same object are received by the visual system and the brain cannot combine them. Tilting or turning the head may briefly correct the problem. however, not all types of crossed eyes cause double vision.

Many serious conditions that affect the brain and nervous system may cause impaired eye movements, leading to double vision. Potential causes include multiple sclerosis, head injuries, brain tumors and bulging of an artery inside the head due to a weakness in the vessel wall. In older people, impaired eye movement resulting in double vision may be linked with diabetes mellitus and rarely with atherosclerosis and high blood pressure.

Double vision can also occur as a result of a tumor or blood clot behind one of the eyes, causing the movement of that eye to be affected.

Double vision can be extremely discomforting. The brain acts to alleviate the discomfort by suppressing, or blanking out, one of the images. In young children, if this suppression persists over a continued length of time, it can lead to an impairment of the development of the visual system. The suppressed eye may get to the point where it is unable to see well, no matter how good the spectacle or contact lens correction. Doctors call this condition amblyopia. Since it is a result of a defect in the interpretive mechanisms of the eye and brain, it is more difficult to treat than a refractive condition (one having to do with the eye’s ability to bend light).


Your doctor may ask you to shut one eye at a time to see whether the double vision disappears. He or she may also ask you to describe the double images, or ask if they appear side by side or one on top of the other or whether one of the images appears to be tilted. Your doctor will probably observe the movements of your eyes closely in order to establish whether any of the eye muscles are weak or paralyzed. He or she may also carry out special vision tests to identify weak eye movement.

If double vision has come on suddenly, or if no obvious cause can be found, or urgent CT scanning or MRI may be done to check for any abnormality in the eye sockets or brain that might be affecting the alignment of the eyes. You should also have a neurological examination.

Treatment of double vision is aimed at the underlying cause. A serious disorder such as an aneurysm may need hospital treatment. Double vision caused by diabetes mellitus will usually disappear over time. But, if it does not disappear, your doctor may advise wearing a patch cover one eye to eliminate the second image. Muscle surgery is also useful if double vision has been present for some time.

Treatment of double vision consists of eye exercises, surgical straightening of the eye or a combination of the two. Therapy is aimed at re-aligning the squinting eye where possible without surgery and re-stimulating the part of the visual pathway to the brain which is not working correctly.

Efforts must first be made to identify and treat the underlying cause of the problem. Treatment options includes prism lenses and/or vision therapy and/or surgery, and also botulinum toxin can be used. On occasions, in certain conditions such as Oculomotor nerve palsy for example, it may be necessary to occlude one eye either temporarily or permanently. Daily wear of prism lenses is a passive compensatory treatment. Vision therapy is an active treatment which retrains the visual and vestibular systems (brain, eye muscles, and body). Vision therapy may eliminate the need for daily wear of prism lenses but is only suitable for a minority of those with diplopic symptoms.

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


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News on Health & Science

Stem Cells To Cure Vascular Disease

SEOUL: South Korean scientists said Monday they used human embryonic stem cells to treat mice suffering from a vascular disease, in an experiment that could lead to cures for strokes and other ailments.


The team, led by Pochon Cha University’s Chung Hyung-Min and Kim Byung-Soo of Hanyang University, said the stem cells were differentiated into blood vessels that were grafted onto the animals afflicted with ischemia.

Ischemia is caused by a shortage of blood to a part of the body, stemming from the constriction of blood vessels. Of the 11 mice treated, four developed new vascular cells that fully revived the damaged limb, while four suffered from a relatively mild case of necrosis. Three lost their legs due to the cut-off of blood flow.

Necrosis is a disease leading to the death of tissue and bone.

The findings appeared in the latest online issue of Circulation, a journal published by the American Heart Association. They showed 10 other mice given alternative treatment failed to recover.

“The findings showed that in the case of animals, the use of stem cells helped save limbs,” Chung told Yonhap news agency.

If further research is carried out, he said, it may help scientists create a wide range of blood vessels.
The professor was quoted as saying that such developments could lead to cures for human strokes, myocardial infections and foot ulcerations caused by diabetes.

More detailed research will be carried out in the next few years to find ways to treat vascular cell-related diseases.

Meanwhile, the identification of a new marker is making it possible to track brain stem cells for the first time, American researchers said. The achievement is already opening doors to new research into depression, early childhood development and multiple sclerosis.

Source:The Times Of India

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