Treatment of Migraine Treatment
Weight Management Treatment
Removal Of Stitches Procedure
Thyroid Problems Treatment
Dressings Of Wounds Procedure
Hiv Prophylaxis Post Exposure
Viral Fever Treatment
Thyroid Disorder Treatment
Stitching Of Wounds Procedure
Management of Surrogacy
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Patient Review Highlights
Zika virus causes a deadly disease called Zika fever or Zika virus disease that spreads by the bite of the Aedes mosquito. The Zika virus is a member of the virus family FLAVIVIRIDAE and is closely related to the dengue, yellow fever, Japanese Encephalitis, and West Nile viruses. It was isolated in the Zika forest of Uganda in 1947 and is known to be prevalent in continents like Africa and Asia primarily, though it’s slowly making headway in the developed world and has spawned the deadly 2015-2016 Zika virus epidemic.
What are symptoms of Zika fever?
People with Zika virus disease can have symptoms which are similar to Dengue, like-
- Red Eye
- Muscle Pain
- Skin Rash
These symptoms usually last for 2-7 days.
Complications of Zika virus disease
According to WHO, Zika virus infection during pregnancy causes congenital brain abnormalities like microcephaly. And the infection can also trigger the Guillain-Barré syndrome. Microcephaly is a condition where a child is born with a small head or the head stops growing after birth and the Guillain-Barré syndrome is a rare condition in which a person’s immune system attacks the peripheral nerves which control muscle movement and sensation.
Even as we read this, intense efforts are being expended to investigate the link between Zika virus and a number of other neurological disorders.
How does Zika spread?
The causes of Zika are:
- The bite of the Aedes mosquito that is infected with the Zika virus. This mosquito is the same that spreads dengue, chikungunya, and yellow fever. It bites primarily in the daytime.
- Unprotected sexual intercourse
- Zika’s transmission through blood transfusion is being investigated.
How can you prevent Zika infection?
Protection against mosquito bites is the most foolproof ways to prevent a Zika virus infection. Other ways to prevent Zika infection via mosquito bites are:
- Just like Dengue prevention, you must cover your body properly, especially during daytime
- Use physical barriers such as window screens or closing doors and windows against the mosquitoes
- Sleep under mosquito nets
- Using insect repellents containing DEET, IR3535 or icaridin
- Take extra care of young children, sick and elderly people
- Cover, empty or clean mosquito breeding sites in and around your house or colony like empty buckets, drums, flower pots and used tyres that can fill-up with water and breed mosquitoes
- Encourage your family and community to support local government efforts to reduce mosquitoes in their localities
- Insist on regular spraying of insecticide for mosquito control in your locality.
For stemming sexual transmission of Zika, the WHO recommends that sexually active men and women be counselled to practice safe sex using condoms. WHO also recommends that people who have come back after travelling from Zika virus zones should be extremely careful in practising safe sex or abstinence for the first 6 months at least, for preventing a pregnancy.
If affected, what is the treatment?
Zika virus disease is usually mild and requires no specific treatment as such.
Infected people are advised plenty of rest, asked to drink enough fluids, and treat pain and fever with common medicines like Ibuprofen. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a General Physician.
Influenza or flu is a contagious respiratory infection that affects the lungs, throat, nose and occasionally, the ears. It usually does not require treatment but Paracetamol can provide relief from most of the symptoms. Rarely, influenza can lead to severe complications like pneumonia, sinus problems and asthma. Annual vaccinations can prevent these complications even if you do get a mild flu.
The influenza virus is air borne and can be spread through coughing, sneezing, skin to skin contact, or indirect contact like touching a contaminated object. Type A, Type B and Type C influenza viruses affect the respiratory organs.
People with weak immune systems are infected more easily than others- children under the age of 4, people above the age of 60 pregnant women, obese people and those who are suffering from kidney disorders and diabetes are at greater risk of infection. Air pollution also aggravates the problem.
There is also little chance that your body has the necessary antibodies to fight the virus if you have been infected before. This is because the influenza virus modifies constantly and new strains of the virus appear rapidly. So, the antibodies that work against one particular variant do not work effectively against the others. This is why vaccination is also not a foolproof preventive technique against this disease.
The symptoms of influenza begin to show within a few days after infection. In a few cases, the infection may be asymptomatic. When they do show, the symptoms are very common- high fever, shivering, a blocked and runny nose, frequent coughing and sneezing and chest congestion are the predominant signs. In the later stages, there are headaches, body aches, general fatigue, reddened and watering eyes, throat pains and difficulty in speaking.
In the cases where the patient is a child, there are a few other symptoms like digestive and gastrointestinal disorders such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal pain. The last two are especially common in children who have been infected by influenza virus Type B.
Aged people often have low resistance to the virus. This is why the flu quickly escalates and the complications like primary viral pneumonia or secondary bacterial pneumonia. In such cases, there are sever symptoms like breathing problems, the presence of blood in the sputum, red and itchy skin and petechial rashes (caused by minor punctures in the capillary blood vessels). If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a doctor and ask a free question.
Dengue fever is a disease caused by mosquitoes which mostly occurs in tropical climates. Dengue hemorrhagic fever is a type of dengue fever that may lead to decrease in blood pressure and severe bleeding. Dengue may lead to death if the symptoms of this disease are not treated at the right time. The symptoms of this disease are high fever, muscle ache, pain in the eyes, pain in the abdomen and nausea. It may also lead to respiratory problems such as breathing difficulties. Presence of blood in the stool and blood spots around the skin are some other symptoms of dengue.
The symptoms of this disease start after 5 - 9 days after being bitten by the mosquito. The disease usually lasts about 7-8 days. In case the symptoms worsen, the disease may become life threatening.
The various methods you can employ to protect yourself from dengue are:
- Maintain cleanliness around your surroundings: Make sure you keep your surroundings clean so that mosquito infestations do not occur. Keep your surroundings clean and dry as mosquitoes thrive in moist and humid surroundings.
- Mosquito repellents: Spray mosquito repellents to keep your home free from mosquitoes. Spray them keeping the room locked to make it more effective. There are multiple types of repellents available such as liquid or gas repellents.
- Clothes: You should preferably wear full sleeved clothes so that your skin is not exposed. It provides additional protection from mosquito bites.
- Mosquito nets: Use mosquito nets to protect yourself from mosquitoes when you go to sleep at night. They also provide protection from other insects that may cause infections.
- Don't store waste: Don't store your waste products for long durations as they may turn into a breeding ground for mosquitoes. Clean it regularly and make sure to keep the area dry.
- Using natural remedies: You may use natural remedies such as burning camphor as it repels mosquitoes. Take camphor and burn it for 20 minutes in a closed room to get rid of the mosquitoes.
Hernia is not life threatening, but is commonly experienced by a number of people. You will experience hernia when an organ pushes through the muscles or tissues surrounding them. A hernia can occur anywhere in the body. The most common areas affected by it are the abdominal area, upper thigh, groin and belly button. In most cases, a surgery is required to treat this condition.
There are 4 common types of hernias. These are:
- Inguinal hernia: This is the most common type of hernia and affects more men than women. It occurs when the intestines push through the lower abdominal wall into the inguinal canal.
- Hiatal hernia: This commonly affects elderly people and occurs when the stomach pushes upwards through the diaphragm. It may also affect children if they are born with a congenital birth defect.
- Umbilical hernia: This affects children and occurs when the intestine pushes through abdominal wall near the bellybutton.
- Incisional hernia: This occurs after an abdominal surgery when the intestine pushes through the scar or other weak tissues.
A hernia can develop overnight or over a period of time. It can be triggered by many factors that cause weakening of muscles and strain the body.
Some of these are:
- Congenital defects such as the abdominal wall failing to close properly
- Persistent coughing
- Surgical errors or injuries
- Pressure on the abdomen caused by pregnancy
- Straining as a result of constipation
- Collection of fluid in the abdomen
- Heavy weight lifting
- Excess weight gain
If anyone in your family has a hernia, you are at a high risk of suffering from one as well. Being obese and smoking can also increase your risk. Cystic fibrosis can also indirectly trigger a hernia by causing a persistent cough. Sometimes a hernia has no symptoms. A bulge in the affected area is the most common symptom of a hernia.
Some other symptoms that you may notice are:
- Pain in the affected area
- Weakness or pressure in the abdomen
- A burning or aching sensation in the affected area
- Acid reflux
- Chest pain
- Difficulty swallowing
If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a doctor and ask a free question.
It has been observed that roughly 3 out of 4 antibacterial bars and soaps contain triclosan which is a certain type of drug previously used in hospital premises. The usage of triclosan in other products like hand wash and gels is yet to be verified and proven safe. Due to lack of proper evaluation there have been a number of instances where antibacterial soap has done more harm than good. Here are a few reasons why you must reconsider using antibacterial soap:
1. It creates bacterial resistance
Triclosan is closely associated with a number of health issues, bacterial resistance being the chief among them. Repeated usage of antibacterial soap can promote the growth of antibiotic resistant bacteria. It might effectively terminate regular bacteria but it is basically useless against the resistant bacteria. The bacteria resistant formula present in these hand washes might cause complications in the long run.
2. It can potentially disrupt endocrine functions
Triclosan has a close resemblance to the thyroid hormone and hence can tip off its receptor sites. This occurrence can lead to major complications like artificially induced early puberty, fertility issues, obesity and sometimes even cancer. Hence it can be said that antibacterial soaps should be avoided in order to prevent such far reaching side effects.
3. It can cause serious health problems in children
Triclosan present in certain hand wash can adversely affect the development of the immune system in children. At a growing age, children develop natural resistance to certain diseases. Prolonged use of antibacterial hand wash and soap can diminish their exposure to bacteria and obstruct the proper development of their immune system. Therefore it is safer to use normal soaps instead which are as effective and do not contain triclosan.
4. It is extremely harmful for the environment
Prolonged and regular usage of hand wash containing triclosan would in turn increase the amount of this drug that gets flushed through the drainage. Triclosan is generally left untreated in the sewage treatment plants which later enters the water bodies and disrupts the food chain since it primarily affects the growth of algae. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a general physician.
Laughter is the best medicine, they say. Apart from making you happy and thawing a potentially anxiety ridden atmosphere, laughter can also promote good health. A deep rooted laughter session once in a while can actually rejuvenate you and give you a dose of health.
If this surprises you, then you need to read the rest of this article to find out how a bout of stress free laughter can help you in the health department. Read on to know more!
- Blood Pressure: Laughing can helping in keeping your blood pressure low, as per various medical studies. This can potentially reduce the risk of falling prey to heart attacks and strokes. The blood pressure will genuinely come down when you laugh heartily, which is especially helpful in situations for patients of hypertension so as to bring down the stress levels.
- Immunity: Did you know that the immune system of the body can get affected by the stress hormone levels? When your brain brings on signals that hint at stress and anxiety, laughter can also help in bringing down the stress levels simply by sharing a joke and laughing about a funny episode with someone close to you. This also gives a boost to the body's immune system. Also, when you laugh really hard, the T cells of the body get activated, which is how the immunity gets a boost so that the next time you are about to catch a cold or flu, the immunity takes over naturally.
- Cardiac Health: Laughter is great for the cardiac health because it helps the heart pump and burns the same number of calories that one would during a long walk. It is a great cardio workout that is ideal for people who are bed ridden due to illness or injury.
- Abs: A long and heartfelt laughter session can actually work your abs as it helps the inactive muscles of the area in contracting and relaxing. This is similar to a moderate work out for the abs. So getting a toned tummy can actually be as easy as having a good laugh.
- Endorphins: The body's natural pain killers reside in the Endorphin hormone. So have a good laugh and release these hormones as a natural side effect of laughing hard. This can help in reliving chronic pain as well.
The best part about laughter is that it generally increases the feel good factor inside you and helps you achieve a more relaxed mind and body where the immunity, heart health and general wellbeing are taken care of. So laugh your way to good health and get a well-functioning immune system with a well-toned body as well.
Everyone can suffer from pain in the stomach, at one time or the other and we usually ignore it. But when the pain is sudden and severe abdominal pain then it is termed as acute pain and this should not be ignored.
Often the following can be expected with acute pain:
- Acute abdomen pain is usually synonymous with rapid onset of the symptoms which might indicate life threatening intra-abdominal pathology.
- Pain is just a feature and not necessary that it is present at all times. An acute abdomen which is pain free usually occurs in children and women who are in their third trimester of pregnancy.
- The differential diagnosis is difficult and wide especially in primary care. This is because the different organs within their peritoneal cavity might have different areas of referred pains.
- Abdominal pain usually happens to be in the top three symptoms when patients present their state in the emergency and accident departments. But only few of these have acute abdominal pain.
- Management of the abdominal pain should be the primary focus and an assessment should be done to reach the differential diagnosis so that care can be given accordingly.
- The clinical evaluation regarding abdomen pain can change quickly. Any diagnosis which had been made can change and both doctor and patient should not be hesitant and seek other treatment.
Conditions which might cause acute abdomen pain are:
- Meckel's diverticulitis or Acute appendicitis
- Acute cholecystitis
- Ectopic pregnancy
- Acute pancreatitis.
- Peptic ulcer disease
- Intestinal obstruction, including paralytic ileus (adynamic obstruction)
- Pelvic inflammatory disease.
- Gastrointestinal (GI) haemorrhage
- Acute intestinal ischaemia/infarction or vasculitis.
- Acute urinary retention
- Renal colic or renal tract pain
- Testicular torsion
- Abdominal aortic aneurysm
- Non surgical diseases like pericarditis, sickle cell crisis, acute intermittent porphyria, HIV-associated lymphadenopathy, bowel disease, typhoid, opiate withdrawal, enteritis, pneumonia, myocardial infarction and hepatitis.
- Rare causes might include thromboemboli, phytobezoar, and phytobezoar
Diagnosis of abdominal pains:
- Patients can be ordered to get their blood tests done. Also if need be then imaging can also be referred to them.
- Following tests can be done to rule out the condition causing the abdominal pain:
- Blood Tests: these include FBC, LFTs, glucose, amylase, clotting, calcium and arterial blood gas for pancreatitis
- Crossmatch or group and save
- Pregnancy test in women of childbearing age
- Blood cultures
- Peritoneal lavage in case of an abdominal trauma
- Urine analysis
- X ray of the abdomen, ultrasound, CT scan
- ECG and cardiac enzymes
- Laparoscopy should be a routine procedure