Categories
Health Alert

Foods That Chronic Pain Sufferers Should Avoid

[amazon_textlink asin=’1501155881′ text=’Chronic pain’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’f5d15351-0252-11e8-a8f4-75e1b5145d38′][amazon_link asins=’0553379887′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’0aca488c-0253-11e8-a7c7-3ba9e82e2a49′][amazon_link asins=’B00HF4T0IW’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’14d64df5-0253-11e8-aa2d-679bf272afd3′][amazon_link asins=’125005267X’ template=’ProductLink’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’214e97cb-0253-11e8-ae00-712cc09c1d3c’][amazon_link asins=’0834132257′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’3131852f-0253-11e8-a7d1-371d1b722fca’][amazon_link asins=’1628727950′ template=’ProductLink’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’39d39a29-0253-11e8-9757-5fdade4ccc98′]

is a pervasive issue and fibromyalgia is a very common form. It is a chronic condition whose symptoms include muscle and tissue pain, fatigue, depression, and sleep disturbances.
………………...CLICK & SEE
Recent data suggests that central sensitization, in which neurons in your spinal cord become sensitized by inflammation or cell damage, may be involved in the way fibromyalgia sufferers process pain.

Certain chemicals in the foods you eat may trigger the release of neurotransmitters that heighten this sensitivity.

Although there have been only a handful of studies on diet and fibromyalgia, the following eating rules can’t hurt, and may help, when dealing with chronic pain.

Limit Sugar as Much as Possible. Increased insulin levels will typically dramatically worsen pain. So you will want to limit all sugars and this would typically include fresh fruit juices. Whole fresh fruit is the preferred method for consuming fruit products.

If you are overweight, have high blood pressure, high cholesterol or diabetes, you will also want to limit grains as much as possible as they are metabolized very similarly to sugars. This would also include organic unprocessed grains. Wheat and gluten grains are the top ones to avoid.

Eat fresh foods. Eating a diet of fresh foods, devoid of preservatives and additives, may ease symptoms triggered by coexisting conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

It’s also a good idea to buy organic food when possible, as it’s best to avoid pesticides and chemicals. However, fresh is best. So if you have to choose between local, fresh, non-organic and organic but wilting – go with fresh, and clean properly.

Avoid caffeine. Fibromyalgia is believed to be linked to an imbalance of brain chemicals that control mood, and it is often linked with inadequate sleep and fatigue. The temptation is to artificially and temporarily eliminate feelings of fatigue with stimulants like caffeine, but this approach does more harm than good in the long run. Though caffeine provides an initial boost of energy, it is no substitute for sleep, and is likely to keep you awake.

Try avoiding nightshade vegetables. Nightshade vegetables like tomatoes, potatoes, and eggplant may trigger arthritis and pain conditions in some people.

Be Careful with Your Fats. Animal based omega-3 fats like DHA and EPA have been touted as a heart-healthy food, and they may help with pain, as well. They can help reduce inflammation and improve brain function. At the same time, you want to eliminate all trans fat and fried foods, as these will promote inflammation.

Use yeast sparingly. Consuming yeast may also contribute to the growth of yeast fungus, which can contribute to pain.

Avoid pasteurized dairy. Many fibromyalgia sufferers have trouble digesting milk and dairy products. However, many find that raw dairy products, especially from grass fed organic sources, are well tolerated.

Cut down on carbs. About 90 percent of fibromyalgia patients have low adrenal functioning, which affects metabolism of carbohydrates and may lead to hypoglycemia.

Avoid aspartame. The artificial sweetener found in some diet sodas and many sugar-free sweets is part of a chemical group called excitotoxins, which activate neurons that can increase your sensitivity to pain.

Avoid additives. Food additives such as monosodium glutamate (MSG) often cause trouble for pain patients. MSG is an excitatory neurotransmitter that may stimulate pain receptors; glutamate levels in spinal fluid have been shown to correlate with pain levels in fibromyalgia patients.

Stay away from junk food. Limit or eliminate fast food, candy, and vending-machine products. In addition to contributing to weight gain and the development of unhealthy eating habits, these diet-wreckers may also irritate your muscles, disrupt your sleep, and compromise your immune system.

Resources:
Health.com 2008
Health.com 2007
National Fibromyalgia Association

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]
Advertisements
Categories
News on Health & Science

Down Memory Lane

[amazon_link asins=’0143037145,B007UR61A4,B008OHV4VK,B075JFM9HC,1539874176,B01K34FSPE,B000K6DPZ6,1455563293,B00NJMX1RK’ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’347069ae-6f02-11e8-81d5-732775f87a1b’]

Scientists are unlocking the secrets to forming long-term memory. :-

The human brain is continuously swamped with sensory information from all around — in the form of new sounds, sights, smells and tastes. The inputs lead to the formation of memory, which is vital to our survival.

The volume of data received is so enormous that only a small part of it enters our short-term memory. After a while, the brain decides what is to be stored for future recall. The process by which lasting memories are created has long been an enigma for scientists. Now, however, researchers have begun to fit the pieces of this great jigsaw puzzle.

Early this month, scientists at the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm made an advancement when they discovered a mechanism that controls the brain’s ability to create memories that last months. Their experiments on genetically modified mice showed that the animals’ ability to form lasting memories could be switched on and off by simply adding a substance to the water they drank.

The brain’s ability to convert new sensory information into lasting memories is the basis of all learning. Much is known about the first few steps of this process — that is, those that lead to memories lasting a few hours. Scientists in the past have seen that altered signalling between neurons while they process a sensory input triggers a series of chemical changes in the connections between nerve endings. These changes are known as synapses.

“A lot is known about the early electrical and chemical events that take place (in the brain) in the first few hours after a memory-causing event. Much less is known about the mechanisms that lead to lasting memories, which typically happen in the next several days,” says Lars Olson, lead author of the study that appeared recently in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

It is generally thought that lasting memories are formed by structural re-arrangements that occur in the contacts between nerve endings. The cerebral cortex, where these memories are stored, has nearly 400 trillion such contacts. The contacts may become larger or smaller, fewer or more in number, or may change positions to carry a novel memory. Once such plastic changes have occurred in the grey matter, the new memories become stored as a change in the brain circuitry. “Perhaps a bit like a firmware upgrade of a computer,” says Olson.

The Karolinska researchers have now discovered that a molecule called Nogo receptor 1 (NgR), found in nerve membrane, plays a key part in transforming short-term memories into lasting ones. Their study showed the gene that expresses this molecule has to be switched off for a sensory input to move to the realm of lasting memory.

To establish this, the Swedish researchers first created mice with an extra gene for NgR. In normal circumstances, the mice were able to switch off their own NgR gene when a learning task was given. But the extra NgR continued to remain switched on. The scientists had hypothesised that if the second NgR was working, the mice would have severely impaired abilities to form lasting memories. And they found this to be true.

The second set of experiments involved the use of an antibiotic, doxycycline, which when added to the drinking water inactivated the extra NgR. The mice which drank the water laced with doxycycline before the learning tasks were given didn’t have any difficulty in retaining their normal ability to form long-term memories.

“The study seems to be excellently designed and executed,” says Chittaranjan Andrade, professor of psychopharmacy at the National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Bangalore. “There is much research data available on NgR, but very little on its role in memory formation.”

According to Andrade, the subject is of significance because memory impairments characterise a number of neurological and psychiatric disorders such as Alzheimer’s.

The study comes close on the heels of another important one which provided glimpses into the role of sleep in the formation and consolidation of long-term memory. It has been known for more than a century that sleep is important for learning and memory. But till date, scientists haven’t been able to pinpoint the exact mechanism that makes it happen.

“I think sleep, particularly dream sleep, is an important component of memory consolidation. Recent experiences — that may be stored in a more temporary fashion — are evaluated such that some are permanently stored while others perhaps wither away,” says Olson. “However, we have not studied to which extent NgR regulation occurs specifically during sleep to allow consolidation.”

The scientists hope that their findings will help in the development of new treatments for memory impairing events such as Alzheimer’s disease, stroke and spinal cord injuries. Medicine designed to target NgR would be able to improve the brain’s ability to form long-term memories.

Source:The Telegraph (Kolkata, India)

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]
Categories
Health Quaries

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.

[amazon_link asins=’B00LEWIK8M,B00MMJPZOI,B00JOPYQUM,B0012BNVE8,B00EXPSYVA,B007Z75H0Y,B000ZOHOQO,B002VLZHLI,B00DTPYGHQ’ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’e43f36d3-1052-11e7-acba-f99a6b2dcb36′]

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:-      [amazon_link asins=’B00YI2S0P8,B00HNWNXAW,B0064T0A8S,B000GCLSMG,B005GM3LW6,B0156WN5CG,B000GCKBRY,B01LFE53LU,B001269GK6′ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’0cb38180-1053-11e7-8a33-f1b365d8b995′]

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 :-     [amazon_link asins=’B019SW1LKS,B00IO2C5DQ,B003WOYK7U,B0057UUHGU,B000R4LPDU,B00RZTAQKI,B06VY4GV3Z,B003WP39W6,B000V83X5U’ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’4457bd4a-1053-11e7-81f5-75c703197f46′]

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……..[amazon_link asins=’184685234X,B00V4BWUQQ,075210859X,184485356X,1902030346,1844852261,0903652676,0752101501,0752106058′ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’7f893e0f-1053-11e7-ace9-750735574198′]

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?

[amazon_link asins=’B000LRFYO4,B00KGDKXO4,B00IJJRSG8,B01N7UI51D,0761859993,B00TKWASNS,B00M5CVU28,B007TNDGO8,B008KW4M6S’ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’a83d9f4f-1053-11e7-a624-fdd127d638ec’]

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………..[amazon_link asins=’B001E48ORC’ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’ddb9552d-1053-11e7-991f-f5e12604b9c1′]

Itchy skin :-

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

A: You can :—………[amazon_link asins=’B01CITQSCE,B01DVKS3I6,B01LOUR3F4,B01N7JSMEV,B01LJVNKEG,B06XPXF4FD,B01N4OGIFT,B01MR7DU0F,B01MU2MOH3′ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’14fa142c-1054-11e7-8d8f-c93be95c09e2′]

• 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)

Categories
Ailmemts & Remedies

Spinal Stenosis

Vertebral column.
Image via Wikipedia

Definition
Spinal stenosis is a narrowing of the lumbar (back) or cervical (neck) spinal canal, which causes compression of the nerve roots.This can cause weakness in your extremities as narrowing often results in pressure on the spinal cord and/or nerves. Spinal stenosis can occur in a variety of ways in the spine. Most cases of spinal stenosis occur in the lower back (lumbar spine) and will affect the sciatic nerve, which runs along the back of the leg.

CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES

The most commonly referred to types of this condition are: lumbar spinal stenosis, occurring in the lower back, and cervical spinal stenosis which occurs in the neck. As mentioned previously, the condition more commonly occurs in the lower back.

Causes
Spinal stenosis mainly affects middle-aged or elderly people. It may be caused by osteoarthritis or Paget’s disease or by an injury that causes pressure on the nerve roots or the spinal cord itself.

The three major causes of spinal stenosis are:

Aging – With age, the body’s ligaments (tough connective tissues between the bones in the spine) can thicken. Spurs (small growths) may develop on the bones and into the spinal canal. The cushioning discs between the vertebrae may begin to deteriorate. The facet joints (flat surfaces on each vertebra that form the spinal column) also may begin to thicken. Aging, coupled with secondary changes, is the most common cause of spinal stenosis. Heredity – if the spinal canal is too small at birth, symptoms of spinal stenosis may show in a relatively young person. Structural deformities of the involved vertebrae can cause narrowing of the spinal canal.

Tumors of the spine – Abnormal growths of soft tissue that may affect the spinal canal directly by inflammation or by growth of tissue into the canal. Tissue growth may lead to bone resorption (bone loss due to over activity of certain bone cells) or displacement of bone and the eventual collapse of the supporting framework of the spinal column.

Trauma – accidents and injuries may either dislocate the spine and the spinal canal or cause burst fractures that produce fragments of bone that penetrate the canal.

Paget’s disease of bone – This chronic (long-term) disorder usually results in enlarged and deformed bones. The disease can affect any bone of the body, but is often found in the spine.
Click Here to see how you can get your life back in 5 days

Blood supply – The blood supply that feeds healthy nerve tissue may be diverted to the area of involved bone.

Fluorosis – An excessive level of fluoride in the body. It may result from chronic inhalation of industrial dusts or gases contaminated with fluorides, prolonged ingestion of water containing large amounts of fluorides, or accidental ingestion of fluoride-containing insecticides. The condition may lead to calcified spinal ligaments or softened bones and to degenerative conditions like spinal stenosis.

Symptoms

* Back pain that spreads to the legs
* Difficulty or imbalance when walking
* Leg pain
* Neck pain
* Numbness in the buttocks, thighs, or calves that is worse with standing, walking, or exercise
* Pain in the buttocks, thighs, or calves that is worse with walking or exercise
* Weakness of the legs

Spinal narrowing doesn’t always cause problems. But if the narrowed areas compress the spinal cord or spinal nerves, you’re likely to develop signs and symptoms. These often start gradually and grow worse over time. The most common spinal stenosis symptoms include:

*Pain or cramping in your legs. Compressed nerves in your lower (lumbar) spine can lead to a condition called pseudoclaudication, false claudication or neurogenic intermittent claudication, which causes pain or cramping in your legs when you stand for long periods of time or when you walk. The discomfort usually eases when you bend forward or sit down, but it persists if you continue to stand upright.

Another type of intermittent claudication (vascular claudication) occurs when there’s a narrowing or blockage in the arteries in your legs.

Although both types of claudication cause similar symptoms, they differ in two important ways: Vascular claudication becomes worse when you walk uphill and improves when you stand still. Pseudoclaudication is usually worse when going downhill and gets better when you lean forward or sit down.

*Radiating back and hip pain. A herniated disk can narrow your spinal canal and compress nerves in your lumbar spine, leading to pain that starts in your hip or buttocks and extends down the back of your leg. The pain is worse when you’re sitting and generally affects only one side.

You may also experience numbness, weakness or tingling in your leg or foot. For some people, the radiating pain is a minor annoyance, but for others, it can be debilitating.

* Pain in your neck and shoulders. This is likely to occur when the nerves in your neck (cervical spine) are compressed. The pain may occur only occasionally or it may be chronic, and it sometimes can extend into your arm or hand. In addition, the spinal cord is sometimes compressed, which can result in lower extremity weakness and difficulty walking. You also may experience headaches, a loss of sensation or muscle weakness.

* Loss of balance. Pressure on the cervical spinal cord can affect the nerves that control your balance, resulting in clumsiness or a tendency to fall.

* Loss of bowel or bladder function (cauda equina syndrome). In severe cases, nerves to your bladder or bowel may be affected, leading to partial or complete urinary or fecal incontinence. If you experience either of these problems, seek medical care right away.

Risk factors

Age is the main known risk factor for spinal stenosis. Your risk of this condition increases after age 50.

Also at risk are people with skeletal fluorosis, a sometimes crippling bone disease caused by high levels of fluoride in the body. Although the disease is rare in the United States, several million people worldwide have severe skeletal fluorosis.

Diagnosis
Spinal stenosis can be difficult to diagnose because its signs and symptoms are often intermittent and because they resemble those of many age-related conditions. To help diagnose spinal stenosis and rule out other disorders, your doctor will ask about your medical history and perform a physical exam that may include checking your peripheral pulses, range of motion and leg reflexes.

You’re also likely to have one or more of the following tests:

* Spinal X-ray. Although an X-ray isn’t likely to confirm that you have spinal stenosis, it can help rule out problems that cause similar symptoms, including a fracture, bone tumor or inherited defect.
* Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). In many cases, this is the imaging test of choice for diagnosing spinal stenosis. Instead of X-rays, an MRI uses a powerful magnet and radio waves to produce cross-sectional images of your back. The test can detect damage to your disks and ligaments, as well as the presence of tumors.
* Computerized tomography (CT) scan. This test uses a narrow beam of radiation to produce detailed, cross-sectional images of your body, including the shape and size of your spinal canal. Because you receive more radiation from a CT scan than from a regular X-ray, you should avoid this test if you’re pregnant.
* CT myelogram. This may be the most sensitive test for detecting spinal stenosis, but because it poses more risks than either MRI or CT, it may not be your doctor’s first choice. If you’re contemplating surgery, however, your doctor may recommend a CT myelogram to assess the severity of the stenosis. In a myelogram, a contrast dye is injected in your spinal column. The dye then circulates around your spinal cord and spinal nerves. A myelogram can show herniated disks, bone spurs and tumors.
* Bone scan. In this test, a small amount of a radioactive material that attaches to bone is injected into a vein in your arm. The material emits waves of radiation that are detected by a gamma camera. The camera then produces images of your bones. In a sense, a bone scan is the opposite of a standard X-ray, in which radiation passes through your body to create an image on film. A bone scan can detect a number of bone disorders, but often can’t distinguish among them. For that reason, it’s usually performed with other tests.
* Other diagnostic procedures
. Sometimes your doctor may inject you with a spinal nerve block or epidural steroids. If your symptoms improve after the injection, spinal stenosis is likely the cause of your discomfort. The problem with this approach is that a negative finding doesn’t mean you don’t have spinal stenosis.

Treatment
Generally, conservative management is encouraged. This involves the use of anti-inflammatory medications, other pain relievers, and possibly steroid injections. If the pain is persistent and does not respond to these measures, surgery is considered to relieve the pressure on the nerves.

Surgery is performed on the neck or lower back, depending on the site of the nerve compression.

The recommended treatment for spinal stenosis is generally open back surgery with high risks, hospital stays and lengthy recuperation time. Laser-assisted surgical procedures can correct the causes of spinal stenosis and relieve painful symptoms. These procedures are called a Foraminotomy or a Laminotomy. These laser spine procedures will remove the portion of the disc or bone spur that is pressing against a nerve causing the symptoms of spinal stenosis. By removing or shrinking the disc with the laser and removing any bone spurs, we can decompress the spinal cord or nerve root that is being impinged. At this point, excess disc material is removed and the symptoms of spinal stenosis typically disappear

Complications of spinal stenosis may include:

* Loss of feeling. Depending on which nerves are compressed, spinal stenosis may cause a loss of feeling in your arms, hands, feet or legs. As a result, cuts or wounds may become seriously infected because you’re not aware of them.
* Loss of bladder or bowel control. In addition, spinal stenosis sometimes interferes with bowel or bladder function — a problem that can affect your quality of life.
* Degenerative changes. Although treatment can relieve symptoms of spinal stenosis, it doesn’t stop degenerative changes. Some of these changes, such as muscle atrophy, may be permanent, even after the pressure is relieved.

Other Complications:Injury can occur to the legs or feet due to lack of sensation. Infections may get worse because pain related to them may not be felt. Changes caused by nerve compression may be permanent, even if the pressure is relieved.

When to Contact a Medical Professional

Call your health care provider if you have symptoms of spinal stenosis.

Click to learn more.…..(1)……(2)…..(3)

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

Resources:
http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000441.htm#Definition
http://www.laserspineinstitute.com/back_problems/spinal_stenosis/
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/spinal-stenosis/

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]
Categories
News on Health & Science

Spinal Shocks Can Control Parkinson’s

[amazon_link asins=’0692497412,1481854992,B074VC9PTN,B074Y6VRYJ,B015XT3496,1482772965′ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’finmeacur-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’df8160de-aa46-11e7-a39f-8b66bf747904′]

By electrically stimulating the spinal cords of rodents, scientists have reversed some of the worst symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. As long as a  mild current flows up their spines and into their brains, the animals regain the ability to scamper around their cages, as if they were normal.
..
The therapy, described in the journal Science, is a potential alternative to direct stimulation, which requires risky and invasive surgery to implant electrodes deep in the brain, researchers said. Only 30% of severely impaired Parkinson’s patients qualify for the operation.

Spinal cord stimulation would be less invasive and inherently safer, and it would reduce the amount of drugs needed to treat the disease, said the report’s lead author, Miguel Nicolelis, a neuroscientist at Duke. In the new treatment, animals whose brains were depleted of dopamine had tiny electrodes, the size of a fingernail, implanted on their spinal cords. Three seconds after a mild electrical stimulation began, they could move about normally.

The treatment was also effective when combined with L-dopa in further experiments; only two doses of L-dopa were needed to produce movement, compared with five doses when it was used by itself. Spinal cord stimulation represents a “big conceptual change” in how to treat Parkinson’s disease, Nicolelis said. Rather than looking at where things happen in the brain, the approach focuses on when things happen, as in the dynamic firing patterns of large circuits of neurons.

These circuits oscillate in harmony and underlie normal brain function. Parkinson’s patients have abnormal low-frequency oscillations in the brain regions controlling movement, Nicolelis said. Stimulation of the topmost layer of the spinal cord, which conveys touch sensations to the brain, may work by disrupting these abnormal oscillations, restoring normal firing patterns across multiple brain structures involved in the control of voluntary movements.

Sources: The Times Of India

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]