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Testicles are held in a loose bag of skin and the enlargement of veins in the area is called varicocele. It appears similar to the varicose vein present in the leg. If you are suffering from varicocele, there will be an impact on the production of sperm. The reduction in sperm production and quality will have an impact on the reproduction. It can interfere with the normal development of the testicles and in some cases, it leads to the shrinkage of testicles.
In some cases, Varicocele may lead to complications. You should be aware of the symptoms so that you will get medical attention at the earliest. When you get the medical attention, you can prevent serious issues. You should be aware of the causes of Varicocele as well. If you are aware of the causes, you can take preventive steps so that further progression of the condition will be arrested.
The development of varicocele will take over a period of time. Hence, you may not witness the symptoms immediately. Pain, swelling and difference in size of testicles are the predominant testicular symptoms. The medical professional can check these symptoms very easily.
- Some patients suffer from pain. The pain will be either sharp or moderate.
- The pain will increase with physical exertion (over a long period of time)
- Will become worse during the day
- There will be relief from pain when you lie down on the back
- It will impact your fertility
- The enlargement of varicoceles will take place over time. If the enlargement is abnormal, it will appear like a bag of worms.
- The testicle will swell and the swelling will be prominent on the left side.
- The testicle is made up of the sperm-producing tubules. If the testicle is damaged, it will become soft and small.
In the male reproductive system, the passage of blood will take place to and from the testicles and it takes place through the spermatic cord.
- As per the opinion of experts, the formation of varicocele will take place due to the obstruction of blood flow by the valves in the cord. The veins will widen in this process. It might lead to the damage of the testicle and it will affect the reproduction system.
- The formation of varicocele will take place in puberty. The varicocele will occur on the left (in most of the cases) due to the presence of the left testicular vein.
- It will lead to grade I varicocele when the spermatic vein fills with the blood.
- There will be damage to the spermatic vein and other veins when you suffer from a shunt type of Varicocele. It is considered as Grade II or III Varicocele.
- If a patient suffers from Varicocele on one side, it will affect the sperm production on both sides.
In most of the cases, the varicocele can be diagnosed very easily.
- Physical examination is sufficient to diagnose the condition and it will be done by your doctor.
- You will not find or feel varicocele when you are in lying condition. The examination of the condition will take place while you are standing up or lying down.
- For some patients, a scrotal ultrasound test will be recommended by the doctor. The procedure will help to figure out the spermatic veins and the doctor will get a detailed picture of the condition.
- There are three clinical grades in the varicocele. They are grade 1, grade 2 and grade 3. You should understand that the grade 1 is the smallest and the grade 3 is the largest.
- The treatment is not based on the size but on the degree of comfort and the inconvenience caused due to infertility.
- Sound waves of certain high frequency will be used to figure out the root issue associated with varicocele. The object identification and measurement of distances will be done very efficiently with ultrasound imaging technology.
The following preventive measures can be taken to overcome the Varicocele.
- Avoid hot temperatures – The symptoms of Varicocele will worsen by being exposed to hot temperatures as it will lead to dilation of veins. Hence, you should avoid hot bath and exposure to hot temperatures. It will help you contain the pain in a very efficient manner.
- Lifestyle – Healthy eating and fitness practices will enhance the fertility chances. If the patient is suffering from reduced sperm production, varicocelectomy or embolization will be performed.
- Avoid lifting heavyweights – You should avoid lifting of heavyweights as there will be great pressure on the abdomen. Bodybuilding and weightlifting exercises should be avoided.
There are no significant risk factors for the development of varicocele. If you are going through the assisted reproductive methods, you should undergo the treatment.
- Varicocele does not require treatment in many cases.
- If there are symptoms in the patient, the condition can be corrected surgically.
The following conditions warrant the treatment of varicocele:
- Causes pain
- Leads to infertility
- Leads to testicular atrophy
- Varicocele will alter the functioning of testicles. Hence, you will want to go for the most appropriate treatment. The sperm production will improve if you take the treatment at the earliest.
- To overcome the pain, you might want to wear tight underwear or a jock strap. With the firm support offered by the underwear, there will be a great comfort.
- The other forms of treatment include varicocelectomy and varicocele embolization. These procedures are chosen when the suffering of the patient is severe.
- Varicocelectomy procedure can be performed on out-patient mode. The abnormal veins will be tied by entering through the abdomen or pelvis. In this process, the blood flow will take place to the normal veins. You should want to talk to your doctor about the procedure so that the precautions, as well as aftercare measures, can be followed.
- Varicocele embolization is a procedure which is performed on the same day. The less-invasive procedure will be done by inserting a small catheter through the groin or nerve vein. A coil will be placed in the catheter and into the varicocele. Thus, the blood that oozes out to the abnormal veins will be blocked.
- After the surgery, you can attend the work in one or two days. However, you should not do exercise for at least 2 weeks.
- If you undergo the embolization, the recovery will be quick.
- If there is a change in size, shape and appearance of testes, you should consult the physician.
Management of varicoceles through non-surgical methods-
The non-surgical treatment of Varicocele is an effective means to manage the condition. There will be a great relief from discomfort and pain with the non-surgical treatment.
- Anti-inflammatory non-steroidal treatment – There will be symptomatic relief from pain by using non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication. However, you will treat the symptoms and it is not considered a specific treatment. If there is severe pain, the surgical repair of a varicocele will be the only option.
- If the patients wait for the surgery, painkilling medication can be used. If you are using painkillers such as aspirin, you should want to inform the doctor about the same. The painkillers will bear a risk of prevention of blood clotting ability.
- There will be relief from pain by lying down on the bed. However, there will be temporary relief from pain. If there is severe pain, the surgery is the highly recommended option.
You should visit the doctor in the following circumstances:
- Pain or swelling in the scrotum
- Presence of mass on the scrotum
- The testicles are of different sizes
- The development of varicocele during the youth
- Having issues with the fertility
- The shrinkage of the affected testicle is called atrophy. The testicle is made up of sperm-producing tubules. The testicle will shrink and damage due to the formation of a varicocele.
- The exact reason for the shrinkage of the testicle is not yet ascertained by doctors. However, due to the malfunction of the valve, the blood will pool in the veins. It will lead to enhanced pressure in the veins and with enhanced exposure to toxins from the blood, the testicles will be damaged.
- The local temperature around the testicles will be high when you are affected by varicocele. It will have a direct influence on the sperm formation, motility and function.
- It may lead to primary infertility in 35% to 44% of men if the couple fails to produce the child after one year of trying.
- It may lead to secondary infertility in 45% to 81% of men if the couple manages to produce the child at least once but not later.
- If you fail to treat the varicocele, there will be a decrease in the sperm quality and quantity. It will lead to infertility and the prolongation of the issue on a long-term basis will lead to testicular injury which cannot be reversed.
- The low level of testosterone will lead to many issues such as the inability to get a firm erection, low sex drive, fatigue, depression, lack of focus, hot flashes, decreased muscle mass, difficulty sleeping.
- Varicocele may lead to hormone imbalance. The cells will react if there is an increase in pressure and it can lead to a change in hormones. Luteinizing hormone (LH) is present in both men and women. However, it may increase is men due to Varicocele. The testosterone levels will be normal to sub-normal.
- Bleeding into tissues which is also called as hematoma is one of the common complications associated with Varicocele.
- Some men will suffer from the accumulation of fluid around the testicle which is affected by Varicocele.
- The possible other kinds of complications are infection and injury to scrotal tissues or structures. If there is an injury to the testicle, it will lead to loss of testicle as well.
Myth #1: It is difficult to live with varicocele
Varicocele is a common complication in males. You can consult your doctor to get an appointment with the specialist. The reproductive specialist will help you and your partner in getting the children.
Myth #2: Surgery cannot be performed to obtain children
Surgery is the option to get children. If you are suffering from severe pain, the doctor will suggest the most appropriate surgery so that you will overcome the pain and there will be a great scope to produce children as well.
Myth #3: Varicocele is similar to varicose veins
Even though varicocele is similar to varicose veins, it occurs around the legs. Even though there are no serious issues with the varicocele, it will affect the reproductive system.
Myth #4: Varicocele affects both sides
Varicocele generally affects the left side
Myth #5: Tests are not mandatory for Varicocele treatment
Urologists will conduct various tests to figure out the Varicocele’s impact on fertility. By conducting ultrasound tests, blood tests and semen analysis, it is possible to diagnose the case.
Myth #6: Most of the men who are infertile suffer from Varicocele
It is only reported in around 15% of men. It was also observed that 35% of the men who were tested for infertility suffer from Varicocele. Hence, 80% of men have issues which are not related to the Varicocele.
Myth #7 Varicocele surgery will improve male fertility
It is not proven whether varicocele surgery can improve the male fertility due to lack of clinical data.
Varicocele is similar to varicose veins. However, it will affect the testicular area in men and it may have a negative impact on the reproduction system. About 15% of men between the age of 15 and 25 years suffer from Varicocele. Even though the exact cause for Varicocele is not known, it will be similar to varicose veins. You will not want to suffer from varicose veins as it is not a serious issue. However, you should undergo the treatment to overcome the fertility issues. If there are severe complications, you should undergo the surgery.
Nasal polyps are soft and painless benign growths on the lining of the sinuses and nasal passages. Nasal polyps hang down as grapes or teardrops. Polyps can occur in one or both nostrils at a time. They can occur due to allergies, chronic infection, drug sensitivity, some immune disorders, or chronic inflammation because of asthma. You may not experience symptoms if you have small nasal polyps. People with many nasal polyps or larger growths may experience blockage in the nasal passages, breathing problems, frequent infections and loss of sense of smell. Nasal polyps are more prone to adults and males but they can affect any person. Your doctor may prescribe you certain medicines in order to eliminate or shrink nasal polyps. In some cases, surgery is required in order to remove nasal polyps. There is a possibility that nasal polyps can return even after proper treatment.
It is not necessary that you will experience symptoms if you have nasal polyps. Due to polyps, there can be a blockage in the nasal passages leading to chronic congestion. Check out various signs or symptoms of nasal polyps:
- People with nasal polyps may have a sensation that their nose is blocked.
- Due to nasal polyps, people may not sense the smell properly.
- People with nasal polyps may feel a pressure in the face or forehead.
- Nasal polyps can make you breathe through the mouth.
- Running nose, nasal stuffiness, and nasal congestion are all the possible signs of nasal polyps.
- You may suffer from sleep apnea due to nasal polyps. Postnasal drip is a situation in which excess mucus collects in the back of the nose or throat.
- Snoring can be a symptom of nasal polyps.
The causes of polyps are still not known. There is no clarification on the part that why people get chronic inflammation or why inflammation leads to the formation of nasal polyps in some people and not in other people. The chronic inflammation happens in the mucous membrane of the sinuses and nose. As per some evidence, it is clear that people who get nasal polyps have different chemical makers in the fluid-producing lining and a different response of immune system than people who do not get nasal polyps. Nasal polyps can occur to any person at any age. But it has been noticed that they are more prone to middle-aged and young adults. There is a possibility that people can get nasal polyps with no nasal problems in the past. As per scientists, there can be some possible triggers including:
- Churg-Strauss syndrome
- Cystic fibrosis
- Allergic rhinitis or hay fever
- Recurring or chronic sinus infections
- Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug sensitivity including aspirin or ibuprofen
How is it diagnosed?
As soon as you discover that you have nasal polyps, you should see a doctor as polyps can lead to various complications. Your doctor conducts a general physical examination and also an exam of your nose. Your doctor will check the polyps with the help of a lighted instrument. Your doctor will do a diagnosis depending on your various answers to queries about the symptoms that you are experiencing. Your doctor may ask you to get various diagnostic tests done in order to confirm the diagnosis:
- Nasal endoscopy: Your doctor conducts a detailed examination of the sinuses and nose with the help of a narrow tube with an illuminated magnifying lens or small camera, known as a nasal endoscope. The doctor inserts the nasal endoscope into your nostril and then guides it into your nasal passage or nasal cavity.
- Imaging studies: Your doctor obtains the images with the help of computerized tomography which helps your doctor to point to the location and size of polyps in deeper regions of the sinuses. It also helps the doctor to find out the range of the inflammation. Other obstructions in the nasal cavity including abnormalities in the structure or different type of noncancerous or cancerous growth can be found out by the doctors with the help of these studies.
- Allergy tests: Your doctor may ask you to get the epidermis test done in order to find out if allergies are developing due to chronic inflammation. A skin prick test can be conducted in which a few drops of allergens, substances that might be causing an allergy are pricked into the epidermis of your upper back or forearm. The drops of allergens are left on your epidermis for some minutes. Then your doctor observes your epidermis to check the signs or symptoms of allergic reactions. If it not possible to conduct a skin test then your doctor may ask you to get a blood test done that find out specific antibodies to allergens.
- Test for cystic fibrosis: If it is diagnosed that your child has nasal polyps then your doctor may order you to get the tests done for cystic fibrosis. Cystic fibrosis is an inherited disorder in which the lungs and digestive system damage and it can threaten the life of the affected person. The diagnostic test for cystic fibrosis is a sweat test which is noninvasive that determines if the perspiration of your child is saltier as compared to the sweat of most people.
Check out various ways that will help you to get prevention from nasal polyps:
- If you feel the dry air in your home then you should use a humidifier.
- You should wash your hands frequently especially after coming from outside or before starting a meal. This helps to reduce the chances of catching a viral or bacterial infection which can lead to a case of inflammation of the nasal passages and sinuses.
- You should avoid those substances that can create an irritation including chemicals, airborne pollutants, and some allergens. This may help you to reduce the chances of developing nasal polyps.
- You should manage your allergies and asthma properly. It is important to follow whatever is recommended by your doctor related to allergy and asthma treatment as it will reduce the risk of developing polyps.
- You should rinse the nasal passages with a saline spray or nasal lavage as it will help you to remove allergens and irritants and make better the flow of mucus.
It is a challenge to clear polyps completely. Your doctor will suggest you the best treatment option as per your condition in order to manage your symptoms and treat the factors that can lead to chronic inflammation. The treatment is given so that the size of polyps can be reduced or polyps can be eliminated. Initially, medicines are given to treat the affected person. In certain situations, the doctor may prescribe to go for a surgery. There is a possibility that polyps can recur that is why surgery is not a permanent treatment option.
In the treatment of nasal polyps, the doctor generally prescribes medicines in the starting. The medicines help to shrink and remove the polyps even the larger ones. Check out various medicines for the treatment of polyps:
- Nasal corticosteroids: Your doctor may prescribe nasal corticosteroid spray that will help you to minimize inflammation. By this treatment, polyps can eliminate or shrink. Budesonide (Rhinocort), fluticasone (Veramyst, Flonase), mometasone (Nasonex), flunisolide, ciclesonide (Omnaris), beclomethasone (Beconase AQ), and triamcinolone (Nasacort Allergy 24HR) are some of the nasal corticosteroids.
- Oral and injectable corticosteroids: Your doctor may recommend you an oral corticosteroid including prednisone if a nasal corticosteroid does not work for you. You can take it alone or in combination with a spray related to the nose. There are some side effects of oral corticosteroids that is why they are taken for a short period. If you have severe nasal polyps then your doctor may recommend injectable corticosteroids.
- Other medications: To treat the conditions which may contribute to inflammation (chronic) in the sinuses and nasal passages, a doctor may prescribe medication to curb the same. In order to treat allergies, antihistamines are used and to treat a recurring chronic infection, antibiotics are used. Patients with aspirin sensitivity and nasal polyps may get benefit from the treatment of aspirin desensitization.
If medications are not effective in eliminating or shrinking polyps then the doctor may ask you to go for endoscopic surgery. This will help in solving the problems related to sinuses and removing nasal polyps. In the surgery, the surgeon inserts a tiny tube with a camera or magnifying lens into the nostrils and guides the tube into the sinus cavities. Some instruments are used to eliminate nasal polyps and other obstacles that block the fluids from the sinuses. The affected person can be discharged on the same day of the surgery. Your doctor may recommend the patient to use the nasal spray after the surgery in order to prevent polyps from recurring. Saltwater (saline) rinse may also be prescribed by the doctor to catalyze the process of healing after the surgery.
Complications occur due to nasal polyps because it restricts the normal airflow, fluid drainage and also because of the degenerative inflammation that underlies their development. The major complications of nasal polyps generally include the following:
- Obstructive sleep apnea: In this chronic condition you usually stop and begin to breathe frequently during the time you sleep.
- Asthma flare-ups: The serious and chronic rhinosinusitis can cause and even worsen the condition of asthma.
- Sinus infections: It has been observed that you are more likely to get sinus infections if you suffer from the disease nasal polyps. These sinus infections occur very frequently and sometimes, they can also become serious or chronic.
- Disfigured structure of the face: Nasal polyps can alter the shape or structure of the face which consequently causes the condition of double vision. Often if the patient has cystic fibrosis, he or she can have eyes which are set wider apart than they are normally.
- Complications due to surgery: When nasal polyps are treated, especially by surgery, they can cause severe nosebleeds. Along with that, surgery in case of nasal polyps can also cause infections. If the treatment with nasal steroids sprays or oral corticosteroids is continued, it can reduce your ability to fight off and counteract sinus infections.
Noncancerous, soft, painless growths which may form on one’s sinuses or nasal passages are known as nasal polyps. They may look like teardrops or hanging grapes. Due to allergies, asthma, drug sensitivity, recurring infection or some immune disorders may result from chronic inflammation.
People generally do not experience symptoms when they have small nasal polyps. Nasal polyps may lead to breathing problems, frequent infections blockage in the nasal passages, and loss of sense of smell. Men are more prone to nasal polyps than women. Polyps can happen to a person of any age.
The word "asthma" originates from the Greek word, ásthma that means, "panting.” Asthma is a medical condition in which the airways swells and produces extra mucus that can make breathing difficult. Because of the inflammation and the extra mucus, it can trigger shortness of breath and wheeze or coughing.
Documented as early as Ancient Egypt, Asthma can be either a minor nuisance or life-threatening. In asthma, the inside walls of the airways get inflamed so that lesser air can pass through them from and to the lungs making breathing a difficult exercise. This swelling can also make the airways really sensitive and increase a person’s susceptibility to allergic reactions.
Asthma has been on the rise significantly since the 1960s and now according to WHO estimate, around 300 million people suffer from asthma worldwide. In fact Asthma is one of the most common chronic childhood illness.
Symptoms of Asthma-
The symptoms of asthma vary. But what most people with asthma have in common is the extreme airway sensitivity because of triggered airway inflammation. Some people have frequent asthma attacks, some people experience asthma only during certain times, some people have it all the time and some people only experience it infrequently.
Common asthma signs and symptoms include:
- Wheezing or coughing
- Shallow breathing
- Throat infection
- Faster heart rate
- Trouble in sleeping
- Difficulty in speaking
Types of Asthma-
Normally people suffering from an asthma attack tend to have a whistling or wheezing sound when exhaling. There are different types of asthma. Some of the most common types of asthma are:
1. Exercise-induced asthma
Also called exercise-induced bronchoconstriction, this type of asthma is induced by strenuous exercises and can cause symptoms like coughing, wheezing, shortness or breath and other symptoms. These symptoms may worsen when the air is dry and cold and usually get triggered during or after an exercise.
2. Occupational asthma
As the name suggests, occupational asthma is triggered by breathing in certain chemical fumes, dust, gases, or other kinds of exposure to allergens at the workplace.
3. Allergy-induced asthma
Allergy-induced asthma is the most common type of asthma, which is triggered by common airborne allergens like pollen, mold spores, dust mites, or particles of skin.
What Are Causes of Asthma?
Although the causes are not particularly clear and anyone can get asthma at any age, it is more common childhood ailment. The studies are still underway to prove a clear asthma cause but according to the researches this disease is believed to be caused by a blend of genetic and environmental factors. Genomics, which is the study of how a person’s genes interrelate with environmental factors, may be the key to understanding why certain people are more prone to asthma than others.
Asthma triggers can differ from person to person and the key is to know what irritants trigger your asthma to ensure minimized exposure to it. Some generic asthma signs and symptoms can include:
- Cold air
- Exercise and other physical activities
- Common cold and other respiratory infections
- Airborne substances like pollen, mold spores, pet dander, cockroach waste, dust mites, etc.
- Airborne substances, such as pollen, dust mites, mold spores, pet dander
- Certain chemicals and air pollutants (smoke)
- Certain preservatives (added to food and beverages)
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
- Certain medicines like aspirin, ibuprofen, etc.
There are several risk factors that can increase your chances of developing asthma including:
- Genetics. Having a family especially a blood relative suffering from asthma
- Having other allergic condition (hay fever)
- Exposure to secondary smoking
- Obesity (people who are overweight are at a greater risk of developing asthma)
- Exposure to increasing amount of smoke or other pollutants
- Occupational triggers
- Stress and anxiety
Diagnosis of Asthma-
Even though it is a common childhood disease, it doesn’t mean, as an adult one cannot develop it. If a person is feeling any of the symptoms whether a child or an adult, it is always a good idea to get checked to know for sure if you have asthma. Asthma symptoms can come and go since it is a ‘variable’ disease.
It is also important to not do self-diagnosis, as some symptoms, which may look like asthma triggers, may not be actually asthma-like persistent cough caused by other diseases like certain heart diseases and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Effective diagnosis of Asthma depends upon its classification. There are four different classifications of Asthma:
Classification of Asthma
- Mild intermittent – It is a mild case of asthma if the symptoms last only for up to two days a week, symptoms flaring up mainly at night and asthma lasting not more than two nights in a month.
- Mild persistent – Mild persistent asthma is when the symptoms can occur twice in a week but not more than one episode per day.
- Moderate persistent – This happens when a person experiences symptoms once a day and in excess of one night a week.
- Severe persistent - Symptoms can last throughout the day and frequently at night on most days.
Diagnosis of Asthma
1. Physical test
The doctor would want to rule out other possible condition through a physical exam to get to know the signs and symptoms.
Some lung function tests can help in determining how the lung in functioning in a person.
One of the most common pulmonary function tests, spirometry measures lung function by checking the amount of air a person can inhale and exhale after deep breaths.
3. Peak flow
The peak expiratory flow is a pulmonary device that can measure the maximum speed one can breathe out. If the readings are low, it may be a sign that the person’s lungs are not working properly and could be a potential sign of asthma.
These tests can be done with a medicine called as bronchodilator (albuterol) to check if the lung functions better with the medication. If the test gets better after the use of bronchodilator, then it is highly likely for a person to suffer from asthma
Additional tests and Diagnosis For Asthma
Other tests that may be required to diagnose asthma include:
1. Methacholine challenge-
Methacholine is considered an asthma trigger and so when it is inhaled it can cause mild constriction of the airways. Most people who have asthma are likely to react to methacholine. Doctor could use this test to determine whether you have asthma.
2. Imaging tests-
Certain imaging tests like x-rays and CT scan can help in identifying certain abnormalities that might be causing breathing issues.
3. Allergy testing-
Most allergy tests can help in identifying allergy to triggers like pollen, dust, etc.
4. Sputum eosinophils-
This test can help in identifying the while blood cells in the mucus to see if asthma is present or not.
5. Nitric oxide test-
For people whose airways are inflamed, they may have higher nitric oxide level than normal which may be able to help in identifying whether the person is suffering from asthma or not.
7. Provocative testing for exercise and cold-induced asthma-
As the name suggests, in this a person is made to perform vigorous physical activities in a controlled environment to check for the triggers.
Treatment of Asthma-
Although there is no known cure available for asthma and it is generally a life-long condition, treatment can control asthma symptoms so a person can lead a normal life. Also when it comes to asthma, there is no one-size fit all treatment methodology. The idea is to understand the triggers that worsen your symptoms, taking steps to avoid them and taking the medication on time to keep asthma in check.
Inhalers are medical devices, which are used for supplying medication into the body through the lungs. There are three types of inhalers. These are:
- Reliever Inhalers: These inhalers are used for the purpose of relieving symptoms at the time of asthma attack. Normally reliever inhalers don’t have many side effects, in some people they may increase heart beat and induce shaking.
- Preventive Inhalers: True to their name, this types of inhalers are used to stop the symptoms from developing.
- Combination Inhalers: If either of these kinds of inhalers doesn’t work for a person, they would need an inhaler that would both relieve the attack and prevent it from happening again.
2. Tablets -
If inhalers don’t work to control the symptoms, one may also use tablets.
Leukotriene receptor antagonists (LTRAs)
LTRAs are the oral tablets prescribed for asthma and are also available in syrup and powder forms. It can be taken every day without many side effects. However, some people may experience some side effects including headaches and stomach pain.
If LTRAs tablets cannot be prescribed for some reasons or is not working, doctors may also prescribe Theophylline. It should be taken every day.
- Steroid tablets-
Steroid tablets are given to give relief from an asthma attack. Long-term usage of steroid tablets for is not recommended unless a person is suffering from severe asthma and if inhalers aren’t handy controlling the symptoms. Some possible side effects of using steroid tablets for long-term are mood swings, fragile bones, high blood pressure, etc.
Other treatments for Asthma
Other treatments like surgery or injections may be required in case other treatments don’t work for a person.
For certain people with severe asthma, some injections like omalizumab, mepolizumab, or reslizumab may be able control the symptoms. For some severe asthma patients, injections are prescribed every few weeks in order to control the symptoms. However, these injections should be taken only under the prescription from an asthma specialist, as these injections may are not advisable for every asthma patient.
For some people for whom treatments like inhalers, tablets, and injections don’t work or in certain cases cannot be administered, a surgical procedure called bronchial thermoplasty can be used. In this treatment, a flexible thin tube is passed down the throat into the lungs and heat is used to warm up muscles surrounding the air controlling nerves to stop causing asthma-like symptoms.
However, this process is fairly new and so much research has not been done on its long-term relief.
There are many complementary therapies that can help ease the symptoms, prevent asthma from happening, and help strengthen the lungs and the airway muscles. However, before incorporating any of these therapies in your lifestyle, it is always best to check with your asthma specialist first. These therapies include
Certain breathing exercises including yoga
- Alternative medicines like homeopathy, chiropractic, and Ayurveda
- Dietary supplements
- Certain traditional Chinese medicine
Common Myths About Asthma
Myth #1: Asthma is a psychological disease
One of the biggest beliefs that many people have is that asthma is psychological and thus they don’t believe in getting medical help. Since asthma affects the airways it is to be noted that is not psychological as it causes the immune system and the lungs to behave erratically when it comes to certain triggers.
Myth #2: Asthma medications lose their effectiveness over time
Asthma meds don’t lose their effectiveness over time and can be used for long-term if the right doses are taken as directed.
Myth #3: People with asthma should avoid physical activity
Although strenuous exercises can sometimes induce asthma, simple exercises can keep a person fit and healthy and help them lead a normal life.
Myth #4: You can outgrow asthma
Some asthma symptoms may improve over time. People also learn how to deal with asthma better as they age since they know what triggers it and what doesn’t. However, there is no outgrowing asthma because it is a lifelong condition.
Myth #5: Asthma Is Easy to Control
Asthma can be easy or difficult to control depends on the kind of asthma a person is suffering from and the triggers. Although even in mild form of asthma, the treatment is required to give the necessary relief to a person to reduce flares and maintain proper lung functions.
Tinnitus (tin-ih-tus) is the perception of noise or ringing in the ears. A common problem, tinnitus affects about 1 in 5 people. Tinnitus isn't a condition itself — it's a symptom of an underlying condition, such as age-related hearing loss, ear injury or a circulatory system disorder.
Although bothersome, tinnitus usually isn't a sign ofv something serious. Although it can worsen with age, for many people, tinnitus can improve with treatment. Treating an identified underlying cause sometimes helps. Other treatments reduce or mask the noise, making tinnitus less noticeable.
Tinnitus involves the annoying sensation of hearing sound when no external sound is present. Tinnitus symptoms include these types of phantom noises in your ears:
The phantom noise may vary in pitch from a low roar to a high squeal, and you may hear it in one or both ears. In some cases, the sound can be so loud it can interfere with your ability to concentrate or hear actual sound. Tinnitus may be present all the time, or it may come and go.
There are two kinds of tinnitus.
1. Subjective tinnitus is tinnitus only you can hear. This is the most common type of tinnitus. It can be caused by ear problems in your outer, middle or inner ear. It also can be caused by problems with the hearing (auditory) nerves or the part of your brain that interprets nerve signals as sound (auditory pathways).
2. Objective tinnitus is tinnitus your doctor can hear when he or she does an examination. This rare type of tinnitus may be caused by a blood vessel problem, a middle ear bone condition or muscle contractions.
You develop tinnitus after an upper respiratory infection, such as a cold, and your tinnitus doesn't improve within a week.
See your doctor as soon as possible if:
A number of health conditions can cause or worsen tinnitus. In many cases, an exact cause is never found.
A common cause of tinnitus is inner ear cell damage. Tiny, delicate hairs in your inner ear move in relation to the pressure of sound waves. This triggers ear cells to release an electrical signal through a nerve from your ear (auditory nerve) to your brain. Your brain interprets these signals as sound. If the hairs inside your inner ear are bent or broken, they can" leak" random electrical impulses to your brain, causing tinnitus.Other causes of tinnitus include other ear problems, chronic health conditions, and injuries or conditions that affect the nerves in your ear or the hearing center in your brain.
Common causes of tinnitus
In many people, tinnitus is caused by one of these conditions:
- Age-related hearing loss. For many people, hearing worsens with age, usually starting around age 60. Hearing loss can cause tinnitus. The medical term for this type of hearing loss is presbycusis.
- Exposure to loud noise. Loud noises, such as those from heavy equipment, chain saws and firearms, are common sources of noise-related hearing loss. Portable music devices, such as mp3 players or ipods, also can cause noise-related hearing loss if played loudly for long periods. Tinnitus caused by short-term exposure, such as attending a loud concert, usually goes away; long-term exposure to loud sound can cause permanent damage.
- Earwax blockage. Earwax protects your ear canal by trapping dirt and slowing the growth of bacteria. When too much earwax accumulates, it becomes too hard to wash away naturally, causing hearing loss or irritation of the eardrum, which can lead to tinnitus.
- Ear bone changes. Stiffening of the bones in your middle ear (otosclerosis) may affect your hearing and cause tinnitus. This condition, caused by abnormal bone growth, tends to run in families.
Other causes of tinnitus
Some causes of tinnitus are less common, including:
- Meniere's disease- Tinnitus can be an early indicator of meniere's disease, an inner ear disorder that may be caused by abnormal inner ear fluid pressure.
- Tmj disorders- Problems with the temporomandibular joint, the joint on each side of your head in front of your ears, where your lower jawbone meets your skull, can cause tinnitus.
- Head injuries or neck injuries- Head or neck trauma can affect the inner ear, hearing nerves or brain function linked to hearing. Such injuries generally cause tinnitus in only one ear.
- Acoustic neuroma- This noncancerous (benign) tumor develops on the cranial nerve that runs from your brain to your inner ear and controls balance and hearing. Also called vestibular schwannoma, this condition generally causes tinnitus in only one ear.
- Blood vessel disorders linked to tinnitus- In rare cases, tinnitus is caused by a blood vessel disorder. This type of tinnitus is called pulsatile tinnitus. Causes include:
- Atherosclerosis- With age and buildup of cholesterol and other deposits, major blood vessels close to your middle and inner ear lose some of their elasticity — the ability to flex or expand slightly with each heartbeat. That causes blood flow to become more forceful, making it easier for your ear to detect the beats. You can generally hear this type of tinnitus in both ears.
- Head and neck tumors- A tumor that presses on blood vessels in your head or neck (vascular neoplasm) can cause tinnitus and other symptoms.
- High blood pressure- Hypertension and factors that increase blood pressure, such as stress, alcohol and caffeine, can make tinnitus more noticeable.
- Turbulent blood flow- Narrowing or kinking in a neck artery (carotid artery) or vein in your neck (jugular vein) can cause turbulent, irregular blood flow, leading to tinnitus.
- Malformation of capillaries- A condition called arteriovenous malformation (avm), abnormal connections between arteries and veins, can result in tinnitus. This type of tinnitus generally occurs in only one ear.
Medications that can cause tinnitus
A number of medications may cause or worsen tinnitus. Generally, the higher the dose of these medications, the worse tinnitus becomes. Often the unwanted noise disappears when you stop using these drugs. Medications known to cause or worsen tinnitus include:
- Cancer medications,
- Water pills (diuretics),
- Quinine medications used for malaria or other health conditions
- Certain antidepressants may worsen tinnitus
- Aspirin taken in uncommonly high doses (usually 12 or more a day)
Anyone can experience tinnitus, but these factors may increase your risk:
- Loud noise exposure- Prolonged exposure to loud noise can damage the tiny sensory hair cells in your ear that transmit sound to your brain. People who work in noisy environments — such as factory and construction workers, musicians, and soldiers — are particularly at risk.
- Age- As you age, the number of functioning nerve fibers in your ears declines, possibly causing hearing problems often associated with tinnitus.
- Gender- Men are more likely to experience tinnitus.
- Smoking- Smokers have a higher risk of developing tinnitus.
- Cardiovascular problems- Conditions that affect your blood flow, such as high blood pressure or narrowed arteries (atherosclerosis), can increase your risk of tinnitus.
Tinnitus can significantly affect quality of life. Although it affects people differently, if you have tinnitus, you also may experience:
- Sleep problems
- Trouble concentrating
- Memory problems
- Anxiety and irritability
Treating these linked conditions may not affect tinnitus directly, but it can help you feel better.
In many cases, tinnitus is the result of something that can't be prevented. However, some precautions can help prevent certain kinds of tinnitus.
Use hearing protection. Over time, exposure to loud noise can damage the nerves in the ears, causing hearing loss and tinnitus. If you use chain saws, are a musician, work in an industry that uses loud machinery or use firearms (especially pistols or shotguns), always wear over-the-ear hearing protection.
Turn down the volume. Long-term exposure to amplified music with no ear protection or listening to music at very high volume through headphones can cause hearing loss and tinnitus.
Take care of your cardiovascular health. Regular exercise, eating right and taking other steps to keep your blood vessels healthy can help prevent tinnitus linked to blood vessel disorders.
1. Calcarea carbonica- When this remedy is indicated, tinnitus may be experienced alone or with vertigo. The person may have hearing problems, or cracking and pulsing sensations in the ears. People who need this remedy are usually chilly, easily fatigued, crave sweets, and feel overwhelmed and anxious when unwell.
2.Chininum sulphuricum- Buzzing, ringing, and roaring sounds that are loud enough to impair the person's hearing suggest a need for this remedy. The person may also have a tendency toward chills and vertigo, during which the tinnitus is often worse.
3. Graphites- This remedy may be beneficial to a person who has tinnitus with associated deafness. Hissing and clicking sounds are often heard in the ears (or even louder sounds like gunshots). People who need this remedy may also have a tendency toward constipation, poor concentration, and cracking skin eruptions.
4. Lycopodium- A humming and roaring in the ears, along with impairment of hearing, suggest the use of this remedy. Sounds may also seem to echo in the ears. People needing lycopodium often have a tendency toward ear infections with discharge, as well as chronic digestive problems or urinary tract complaints.
5. Carbo vegetabilis- This remedy may be useful if ringing in the ears occurs during flu or other conditions involving vertigo and nausea. The symptoms may be worst in the evening and at night. The person may feel cold and faint, but usually has a craving for fresh and moving air. Carbo vegetabilis is also helpful when an illness has been prolonged or recovery is slow.
6. China (also called cinchona officinalis)- This remedy is often helpful to people who feel touchy, weak, and nervous with sensitivity to noise and tinnitus. It is often indicated after fluids have been lost through vomiting, diarrhea, heavy sweating, and surgery or other conditions involving blood loss.
7. Cimicifuga- People likely to respond to this remedy are very sensitive to noise, along with tinnitus, and often have pain and muscle tension in the neck and back. They are usually energetic, nervous, and talkative, but become depressed or fearful when not feeling well. Headaches and problems during menstrual periods are often seen in people who need this remedy.
8. Coffea cruda- This remedy may be helpful to an excitable, nervous person with tinnitus accompanied by extremely sensitive hearing and a buzzing feeling in the back of the head. People who need this remedy often have insomnia from mental overstimulation.
9. Kali carbonicum- Tinnitus with ringing or roaring, accompanied by cracking noises and itching in the ears, may be relieved with this remedy. Vertigo experienced on turning is another indication. People who need this remedy are often quite conservative, with a rigid code of ethics. They tend to feel anxiety in the region of the stomach.
10. Natrum salicylicum- This remedy may be beneficial if ringing in the ears is like a low, dull hum. Loss of hearing related to bone conduction, as well as nerve interference and vertigo, may be involved. Natrum salicylicum is a useful remedy when tinnitus and tiredness occur after influenza or along with meniere's disease.
11. Salicylicum acidum- This remedy is indicated for tinnitus with very loud roaring or ringing sounds, which may be accompanied by deafness or vertigo. The problem may have begun with flu, or occur in a person with meniere's disease. Salicylicum acidum may also be helpful if tinnitus has been caused by too much aspirin.
"Don’t use any homeopathic remedies without any prescription."