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Also known as slipped disc, herniated disc or sciatica. The discs are the shock absorbers of your spine. When they are injured the inner soft part of the disc can protrude out through a tear in the outer lining of the disc. This disc material can press on the nerves in the spinal column, injuring them through direct pressure and causing inflammation.
The most common age to develop a disc prolapse is between the ages of 30-50 years., twice as many men as women are affected. Prolpased discs occur mainly in the low back (lumbar) spine. Less than I in 20 cases of back pain are due to a disc prolapse, most are due to mechanical back pain. (see section back pain).
A slipped disc is characterised by sudden, severe back pain that is often made worse by movement and which can usually be eased by lying down flat.
Nerve root pain (sciatica) can also occur because a nerve is trapped or irritated by a prolapsed disc. Although the problem is in the back, patients experience pain along the course of the nerve, for example, down a leg to the calf or foot.
With a prolapsed disc, the sciatic nerve is most commonly affected. The sciatic nerve is a large nerve that is made up from several smaller nerves that come out from the spinal cord in the lower back and travels down each leg. The irritation or pressure on the nerve may also cause pins and needles, numbness or weakness in part of a buttock, leg or foot.
In rare cases, cauda equina syndrome can occur. This is a disorder where the nerves at the very bottom of the spinal cord are trapped. It can cause low back pain as well as problems with bowel and bladder function and weakness in one or both legs. These symptoms need urgent medical treatment to prevent permanent damage to the nerves that supply the bladder and bowel.
A large number of people can have a prolapsed disc without any symptoms if it doesn’t trap or irritate the nerve.
A doctor will normally be able to diagnose a prolapsed disc from the symptoms and by examining the patient.
In most cases, no tests are needed, as the symptoms often settle within a few weeks.
Tests such as x-rays or scans may be advised if symptoms persist. In particular, an MRI scan can show the site and size of a prolapsed disc. This information is needed if surgery is being considered
I am 52 yrs. Old. I want to knw dt I hv to pap test nd mammography. As I hv not done dt tests yet. I font hv any problem I hv only thyroid nd spondylities problem. Nf I am minor thalassemia present.
The uterus is set up inside the pelvis with different muscles, tissue, and tendons. Due to pregnancy, labour or complicated delivery, in a few ladies, these muscles tend to weaken. Additionally, as a woman ages and with a loss of the hormone oestrogen, her uterus can drop into the vaginal canal, bringing about the condition known as a uterine prolapse.
The following conditions can bring about a prolapsed uterus:
- Pregnancy with complicated or even ordinary delivery through the vagina.
- Weakness in the pelvic muscles with the increase in age.
- Weakening and loss of tissue after menopause and loss of normal oestrogen.
- Conditions leading to increased weight in the abdomen, for example, constant coughing (with bronchitis and asthma), straining along with constipation, pelvic tumours (uncommon), or clogging of liquid in the abdomen.
- Being overweight puts extra strain on pelvic muscles.
- Previous surgery in the pelvic region leading to loss of outer support
However, this condition can be treated effectively:
- Self care at Home: You can strengthen your pelvic muscles by performing Kegel workouts. You do these by contracting your pelvic muscles, as though attempting to stop the stream of urine. This exercise makes the pelvic muscle strong and gives some support. Have your specialist train you on the best possible approaches to exercise your muscles.
- Medications: Oestrogen (a hormone) cream or suppository ovules or rings embedded into the vagina help in strength and endurance building of the tissues in the vagina. However, oestrogen is just for use in some of the postmenopausal ladies.
- Surgery: Based on your age and whether you wish to conceive a child naturally, surgery can repair the uterus or remove it. The uterus as in many cases can be expelled with a hysterectomy. During the surgery, the specialist can repair the hanging or saggy vaginal dividers, urethra, bladder, or rectum. The surgery might be performed by an open abdomen procedure, through the vagina, or through little cuts in the abdomen or vagina with particular instruments.
- Other Therapy: In case that you do not need surgery or have a poor possibility for surgery, you may choose to wear a steady gadget, called a pessary. It is worn in the vaginal tract to strengthen the falling uterus. It can be utilised briefly or can be long-lasting. They come in different shapes and sizes and should be fitted according to the person. In case that the prolapse is extreme, a pessary may not work. Prolapse surgery is always preferred by vaginal route. Likewise, pessaries can disturb the insides of the vagina and may bring about a noxious release.
It can be prevented in the following manner:
- Decrease your weight.
- Try to avoid constipation by consuming a high-fiber diet.
- Do Kegel exercises to strengthen the pelvic muscles.
- Stay away from heavy lifting or straining.
In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
My father-in-law's age is 64 and he had malignant tumour in urinary bladder. Later it was operated 1 year ago. It was in first stage. But yesterday we did a USG. Report of the USG is "mild focal mucosal thickening in urinary bladder. My question is does his cancer in urinary bladder come back?
If you are concerned about liver cancer, you should know that most people do not experience signs and symptoms of the cancer in the early stages. Liver cancer is a form of cancer which occurs in the cells of the liver. There are various types of cancer which can develop in the liver. Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the most common liver cancer which begins in the hepatocyte, which is the main liver cell.
Usually there are no specific primary stage symptoms of liver cancer. Some symptoms which may develop include the following:
Unusual weight loss is observed
Loss of appetite and developing food aversion
Pain in the upper abdomen
General weakness with intense fatigue
Swelling in the abdomen
The skin may become yellow
White and chalky stools are likely
In most cases, the causes of liver cancer cannot be clearly determined. In some cases, the cause is known, such as chronic infection with the hepatitis virus, which may lead to liver cancer. Liver cancer occurs when the liver cells undergo changes or mutations in their DNA structure. DNA mutations lead to changes in instructions of chemical processes taking place in the body. The cells may grow out of control and develop into a cancerous tumour.
There are several factors which enhance the risk of liver cancer. They are as follows:
A progressive and irreversible condition known as cirrhosis leads to scar tissue formation in the liver, increasing the risk of liver cancer.
Certain inherited liver diseases such as Wilson’s disease and hemochromatosis also increase the chances of liver cancer.
People with diabetes are also at a greater risk of having liver cancer.
Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), which is the accumulation of fat in the liver, also increases the chances of getting this condition.
Excessive alcohol consumption is another factor which causes irreversible damage to the liver and the chances of getting liver cancer get boosted.
Exposure to aflatoxins, which are poisons produced by molds growing on poorly stored crops, make you more likely to get liver cancer.
Several tests and procedures are carried out for the diagnosis of liver cancer. These include blood tests for diagnosing liver function problems, and imaging tests such as ultrasound, CT scan and MRI scan.
I am suffering from sciatica for the last 6 months. Tried back exercises and muscle relaxants. The condition is due to L4/L5 disc herniation. Kindly advice.
I am 40 year old women. Unable to walk without support. MRI report shows multiple disc degeneration. Surgeon said, this is not the cause of walking problem. Physiotherapy was started. Is this serious? Can you please suggest me. Is this curable?
Dilation and curettage procedure which is commonly referred to as D&C is a minor surgical procedure where the cervix is dilated while a special instrument is used for scraping out the lining of the uterus. It is important to know what you can expect before, after and during the process so that you can stay ahead of unnecessary worries and help the process to be smooth and fruitful.
When do doctors recommend dilation and curettage process?
You may be required to undergo the dilation and curettage procedure for one of many reasons. It can be used for removal of tissues in the uterus during or after an abortion or miscarriage or to remove little pieces of placenta after delivery. This process aids in preventing infection as well as heavy bleeding. On the other hand, it can help in diagnosing and treating abnormal uterine bleeding including polyps, fibroids, hormonal imbalances and even uterine cancer. A sample of the tissues in the uterus is tested under a microscope to check if there is any abnormal cell present.
What can you expect during the dilation and curettage process?
The D&C procedure is a minor one and takes about 15 minutes even though you will have to spend about 4 to 5 hours in the healthcare facility. Before the procedure, your doctor would check complete history, and at this point, you should tell your doctor if you suspect that you are pregnant, you are sensitive to latex or any medicines or if you have a history of bleeding disorders. You will then be given anesthesia so that you don’t feel any pain or discomfort during the procedure. Before this procedure, you will have to empty your bladder.
The D&C procedure comprises two main steps, dilation, and curettage.
Dilation involves opening of the lower part of the uterus or the cervix for allowing insertion of a slender rod. This is done to soften the cervix so that it opens and allows curettage to be performed. Curettage involves scraping of the lining and removal of the uterine contents with the help of a spoon-like instrument known as a curette. This may cause some amount of cramping, and a tissue sample would be taken out for examination in the laboratory.
After the completion of the procedure, you may experience slight bleeding and cramping. In some rare cases, adhesions or scar tissues may start forming inside the uterus, and this condition is termed as Asherman’s syndrome which can cause changes in the menstrual cycle along with infertility. This problem, if arises, can be solved with the help of surgery and therefore, you should report any abnormality in your menstrual cycle to your doctor. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
Breast Cancer - What exactly is it?
‘Breast cancer’ is a term that is used to refer to a malignant tumour, which has developed from cells present in the breast. Generally, all tumours can be divided into two categories i.e. benign and malignant and it is the malignant tumour that is responsible for causing cancer. Breast cancer generally originates in the cells the milk producing glands of the breast's or the passage, which carries milk from the glands to the lobules. Additionally, breast cancer can also originate in the stromal tissues, including the fibrous and fatty connective breast tissues.
Breast Cancer: Treatment Options
Treatment for breast cancer depends upon two things: the exact type of the cancer and how advanced the cancer is. Treatment options for breast cancer can thus be broadly divided into two categories as Local treatments and Systemic treatments.
Treatments that target the tumour without having any effect on the rest of the body are called local treatments. The following types of local treatment options are available for treating breast cancer:
- Surgery: Surgical breast cancer treatment involves removal of the malignant cancerous tumour in an operation. Smaller tumours can be removed using a surgical process referred to as ‘lumpectomy’, wherein the tumour along with a small amount of healthy tissue surrounding the tumour is removed. For larger tumours, removal of the entire breast becomes mandatory, in a surgical process known as ‘mastectomy’. Women who undergo mastectomy can choose to undergo reconstructive plastic surgery for reconstruction of the removed breast(s).
- Radiation Therapy: This basically involves using radiation to kill cancer cells present in the body. Radiation therapy is a long-drawn process that usually involves a set number of treatments administered over a long period of time. Radiation therapy is also generally the follow-up procedure after a lumpectomy, or more rarely, a mastectomy.
Treatments involving drugs that are administered via either the mouth or direct injection into the bloodstream are called systemic treatments. These include:
- Chemotherapy: This includes using drugs to destroy the cancer cells present in the body by stopping the cancer cells from growing and dividing. Chemotherapy can be administered using either an IV (intravenous) tube or via pills that can be swallowed.
- Hormone Therapy: This treatment option is used for treating tumours which have tested positive for progesterone or oestrogen receptors. Blocking hormones that fuel the tumour’s growth is the basis of this therapy.
- Targeted Therapy: This targets specific proteins and genes which contribute to growth and survival of the cancer cells. Targeted therapy is an extremely focused treatment, and is very effective in blocking the growth and division of cancer cells, as well as minimizing damage to surrounding healthy cells.