What Causes Typhoid? Enteric Fever Symptoms, Treatment and Food Habits.

Typhoid fever is a condition occurring because of bacterial infection. The bacteria spread through contaminated food and water. Medical science has grown to be able to treat the disorder without complications.

What causes typhoid?

What causes typhoid

Salmonella Enterica serotype Typhi bacteria cause typhoid. We also know it as enteric fever after the bacteria. Salmonella Paratyphi bacteria, but the repercussions are comparatively less.
Typhoid causing bacteria survives in water or food. The primary means of transmission is through the consumption of contaminated food and water.

Other causes of typhoid are:

  • Coming in direct contact with the infected person
  • Coming in contact with “carriers”, carriers are people who have recovered from typhoid but still carry the Salmonella Typhi bacteria in them.

Signs and symptoms of typhoid

Signs and symptoms of typhoid From the time coming into contact with the bacteria, the typhoid fever symptoms might take one or two weeks to appear.

The symptoms of typhoid fever include:

  • High fever reading 104 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Weakness
  • Stomach pain
  • Mild or intense headaches
  • Loss of appetite
  • Blemish
  • exhaustion
  • Constipation or diarrhoea
  • Generalized body aches
  • Lethargy

Chest congestion, abdominal discomfort, and vomiting are other indications of enteric fever. Patients with advanced stages of typhoid show intestinal bleeding and intestinal perforations.

Other traits of typhoid complications are:

  • Pneumonia
  • Kidney or bladder infection
  • Pancreatitis
  • Myocarditis
  • Endocarditis
  • Meningitis
  • Paranoid psychosis

Diagnosis of Enteric fever

Once the S Typhi bacteria enter the body, it enters the bloodstream via the intestine. The bacteria invade the liver, spleen, and bone marrow and multiply, causing weakness. The subject might also develop a high fever as the immune system fights back the infection.

The presence of the bacteria is confirmed by blood tests that look for S. Typhi bacteria. If the results are inconclusive, they do culture tests to assess the presence of the bacteria in the body.

For generating the cultures, stool, urine, or bone marrow sample are collected from the patient. The samples are then placed in a medium that encourages the growth of the bacteria. After this, the cultivation is then placed under the microscope to check the presence of the S. Typhi Bacteria to confirm Typhoid fever.

Enteric fever treatment

Typhoid can be treated if detected early. The chief cure for typhoid fever is antibiotics. Antibiotic therapy kills the Salmonella Typhi bacteria.
With typhoid fever treatment and proper food intake, most people show improvements in 2-3 days. One can expect full recovery with a continuation of the treatment.
The most commonly prescribed antibiotics are:

  • Azithromycin (Zithromax). One of the most commonly prescribed antibiotics is effective against Salmonella Typhi as well.
  • Ceftriaxone. Ceftriaxone is commonly prescribed to children suffering from typhoid.
  • Ciprofloxacin (Cipro). For people showing mild symptoms and women who are not pregnant, doctors prescribe this antibiotic. This medicine is not adequate for bacteria strains found in South Africa.

Long-term use of these drugs is harmful to the body. It should be taken under the supervision of doctors. Unsupervised consumption might lead to making the bacteria resistant to antibiotics, causing severe implications. Not just this, one should not consume medication without a doctor’s advice.

Along with the antibiotics, other treatments include:

  • Having plenty of fluids prevents dehydration resulting from fever. If the patient is severely dehydrated, a doctor might prescribe taking IV fluids.
  • In extreme cases, if the intestine is damaged, it might need surgery.

Prevention of Typhoid

It is easy to prevent typhoid – watch what you eat and drink.

  • Don’t drink tap water or well-water directly.
  • Always drink pasteurized milk.
  • Avoid consuming ice cubes and popsicles made outside.
  • Do not consume raw meats and vegetables.
  • Avoid fresh produce salads if not cleaned well.
  • Avoid direct contact with infected people
  • Frequently wash your hands, especially before eating.

One way to boost up your immune system is through vaccination. Having vaccinations can avoid infection by 50%-80%. So make sure to take your vaccinations on time.

Typhoid is currently one of the treatable diseases. In case you suspect an infection, contact us immediately and get the best treatment at Vydehi. Do not self-medicate but reach out to professionals for a complete cure.

Disclaimer: The Knowledge included here is only for information sharing purposes, and the blog is not intended to be a substitute for diagnosis, medical advice or treatment by a healthcare professional. Because of individual needs appropriate advice, the reader should consult their doctor to determine the appropriate disease depending on their situation.

Corona Virus (Covid-19) Symptoms, Treatment & Precautions at Home

Corona Virus has caused a pandemic in the world. What started as a plain infection has turned out to be more than that by affecting health and the economy worldwide. The virus has morphed itself into many variants and is adapting itself to the climate and region. It poses an unprecedented challenge to the best of the human brain.
CoronaVirus leads to an acute respiratory syndrome, also threatening the lives of people with comorbid conditions. The virus is part of the group that causes SARS and MERS.

Corona Virus (Covid-19)

Corona Virus (Covid-19) Symptoms, Treatment & Precautions

Origins

China’s Wuhan province was the first region to report the outbreak of this virus. From there, this community-acquired disease has spread worldwide. Corona gets its name from the Latin word meaning hat since the virus exhibits a crown-like structure.

Coronaviruses Causes

COVID is a respiratory condition caused by a SARS-CoV-2 virus, or in simple terms, coronavirus. The conditions exhibit flu-like symptoms, but the impact is much harder on the human body.
The virus is present in large respiratory droplets to small aerosols.
There are two critical ways of how the virus spreads –
●The condition causing virus spreads from one person to another in small liquid particles when the infected person coughs, sneezes, breathes, sings, or speaks.
●Touching the infected surface and rubbing eyes or picking nose without washing your hands properly.

Coronaviruses Symptoms

Corona Virus does not affect everyone the same way. Some people who test positive for the virus are asymptomatic and act as carriers. For others, especially people with comorbid conditions like diabetes, the virus can wreak havoc with their health.
The symptoms of COVID-19 are across the spectrum. COVID symptoms range from loss of smell to more severe symptoms like swollen glands or chest pain.
The first sign of the infection can be a loss of smell, following which other symptoms may develop. A few of the common COVID-19 symptoms are:

  • Fever
  • Cold
  • Caugh
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Tiredness
  • Diarrhoea
  • Body pain
  • Sore throat
  • Frequent headaches
  • Congested or runny nose

Emergency symptoms include:

  • Rash
  • Blue lips
  • Conjunctivitis
  • Sudden confusion
  • Breathing problems
  • Constricted chest or chest pains

COVID Treatment Guidelines

There is no specific treatment plan for COVID. Doctors form a treatment plan according to the symptoms displayed by the individual since it may vary from person to person.
Antibiotics are not effective against the coronavirus. The WHO and the local medicine approval boards have suggested using the following medicines for the covid treatment.

  • Antiviral drug Remdesivir
  • Baricitinib to reduce inflammations and viral activity.
  • Monoclonal antibody medications like Casirivimab and Imdevimab is prescribed for people with mild to medium infection risk.
  • They gave people with severe COVID infection who are on ventilators or supplemental oxygen corticosteroids such as hydrocortisone, prednisone or methylprednisolone.
  • Convalescent Plasma Therapy: Medical practitioners suggest this method of COVID-19 treatment to people with a weak immune system or in the early stages of the infection. It is the process where plasma from people who have recovered from COVID is infused into patients who need it.
    Though there is no specific treatment, scientists have been able to develop Corona Vaccinations. The vaccines have been successful up to an extent to bring down the mortality rates and reduce the severity of the infection.

Precautions for COVID-19 (1)

Precautions for COVID-19

One has to follow simple precautions to avoid getting infected. The most common pre and post covid precautions include:

  • Standing approximately six feet from others when in a queue, while using public transport, or in public spaces.
  • Wash your hand as frequently as you can for a minimum of 20 seconds. Only if you do not have access to the hand-wash, use personal hand sanitizers.
  • Avoid shaking hands as a measure of greeting.
  • Applying self-quarantine or isolation for individuals who feel sick.
  • Avoid mass gatherings during functions or events.
  • Avoid eating and drinking at bars, restaurants, and food courts.
  • Do not travel unless necessary.
  • Do not panic and take drastic measures as it can cause adverse health effects.

COVID Precautions and Treatment at Home

In the event of a person showing asymptomatic conditions for COVID, follow the below precautions at home.

  • Avoid eating together with the family. Adding to it, do not share plates and glasses to consume food and liquids, and wash utensils thoroughly after every use.
  • Wear a mask at home when using common spaces.
  • Isolate self for a minimum of 14 days to avoid passing the infection to the family members.
  • Consume easy-to-digest foods. Have food rich in Vitamin C like citrus fruits to decrease the rigour of the infection.
  • Wash hands frequently.
  • Regularly sanitise commonly used surfaces like doorknobs or handles.
  • Get a minimum sleep of 7 hours.
  • Perform 150 minutes of physical activity that will increase your heart rate per week.

Hospitals and healthcare facilities can also contribute to the spread of the virus. So, in case of COVID-19 infection, consult a family doctor online. Based on their suggestion, one can decide if one should go to the hospital or follow home quarantine. In case of doubt, get a video consultation with our specialists at Vydehi today and clarify your doubts and queries.

Disclaimer

The Knowledge included here is only for information sharing purposes, and the blog is not intended to be a substitute for diagnosis, medical advice or treatment by a healthcare professional. Because of individual needs appropriate advice, the reader should consult their doctor to determine the appropriate disease depending on their situation.

Health Benefits of Donating Blood and Eligibility Criteria for Donor

Blood, the sustainer of human life, is a tissue made of red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets, and other substances suspended in a heterogeneous mixture with straw-yellow fluid called plasma. Blood is the liquid of life and is equally precious.

On average blood constitutes approximately 7-8% of an adult human’s weight. About 5ltr-6 liters of blood circulates through the body of an adult person. This nectar of life carries a wide range of functions in the human body including but not limited to the transportation of nutrients, hormones, oxygen, carbon dioxide, and other waste products. It plays a vital role in the immunological function of the body along with the maintenance of homeostasis by regulating temperature, pH, etc.

According to a survey in India, every two seconds there is a requirement for blood transfusion. The nation faces an acute shortage of donated blood as only 2.5crore units of blood is available where the demand is that of a staggering 5 crore units of blood every year. Due to various medical conditions including road traffic accidents, medical procedures like surgery, diseases like thalassemia, labor (delivery), and other serious and life-threatening conditions, about 38,000 donations are required every day.

Benefits of blood donation

Benefits of blood donation

Blood donation not only helps the recipient but also has numerous advantages to the donor. The benefits of regular blood donation are multi-folded;

  • It improves the emotional and physical health of the donor.
  • Since every blood donated is screened, it acts as a major health screening and health checkup for the donor.
  • Donors can know the status of their HIV, Hepatitis B C, Malaria, syphilis along TTI pre-donation.
  • A Mini health check-up is known with the pulse, temperature, Haemoglobin, Blood pressure, etc
    Decrease the risk of cardiac diseases.
  • Improves liver health
  • Boosts immune system.
  • Decreases the risk of iron overload.
  • Lowered risk of cancer and replenishment of blood cells.

Eligibility criteria for blood donation

According to the guidelines by the National Blood transfusion council, National Aids control organization, and ministry of health and family welfare, the Govt of India released in October 2017, the following are the eligibility criteria for blood donation.

  1. Well-being – The donor has to be in good health, mentally alert, and physically fit.
  2. Age limit- Minimum age of 18 years to a maximum age of 65 years.
    For apheresis donation, it is 18-60 years. Apheresis donation- where only one of the blood components is donated through the process of cell separation for example plasma donation, platelet donation, etc.
  3. Volume of collected blood and weight of donor – 350mL for 45kg 450mL for more than 55kg. Apheresis donor – minimum 50kg
  4. Donation interval- Whole blood donation once in 3 months for males and once in 4 months for females.
    Apheresis: At least 48 hours after platelet/plasma -apheresis is to be kept. Maximum 24 donations can be accepted in one year with not more than 2 donations in a week.
  5. Blood pressure- 100-140mmhg systolic and 60-90mmhg diastolic with or without medications.
  6. Pulse – 60-100, Regular
  7. Temperature- Afebrile, 37° Celsius
  8.  Haemoglobin –  > or = 12.5g/dL
  9. Risk behavior- Donors must be free from any disease transmissible by blood.

Some other important points to be considered on blood donation.

  • The first-time donor cannot be over 60 years of age.
  • After whole blood donation, plateletpheresis donation cannot be accepted before 28 days.
  • An apheresis platelet donor cannot do whole blood donation before 28 days from past apheresis donation if reinfusion of RBCs was complete.
  • If RBC reinfusion was not complete, the donor cant be accepted within 90 days.
  • Donation is not accepted for 12 months after bone marrow harvest. In 6 months after a peripheral stem cell harvest, the donation is not accepted.
  • Findings suggestive of end-organ damage or secondary complication ( cardiac, renal, eye, or vascular) are to be excluded.
  • A person with a history of feeling giddiness, fainting during the examination, and history is not accepted for donation.
  • If the person is on medication for blood pressure the drug or dosage should not have been altered in the last 28 days.
  • The donor has to be free from acute respiratory disorders.
    Regular heavy alcohol intakers cannot be donors.
  • Aircrew members, long-distance vehicle drivers, workers above or below sea level, emergency service providers, strenuous workers can’t donate blood at least 24 hours prior to their next duty shift.
  • Night shift worker without adequate sleep cannot be a donor.
  • A person considered ‘at risk’ for HIV, hep B, or C infections is excluded determined by the medical officer
  • A person with a history of travel or residence from an endemic disease area that is transmittable by blood and for which screening is not mandated or there is no guidance in India can’t donate blood.
  • The donor has to be free from any skin diseases at the site of phlebotomy.
  • Blood donation is deferred till subsidization of all minor nonspecific symptoms like general malaise, pain, headache, etc.
  • Donors who have had an unexplained delayed faint or delayed faint with injury or two consecutive faints following blood donations cannot donate blood further.

The donation cannot be accepted from people with;

Asthmatic attacks, asthmatics on steroids, open heart surgery including bypass surgery, cancer surgery, active symptom of chest pain, shortness of breath, swelling of feet, myocardial infarction, on cardiac medications like digitalis/nitroglycerine, hypertensive heart disease, coronary heart disease, angina pectoris, rheumatic heart disease with residual damage, epilepsy and convulsions, schizophrenia, insulin dependent diabetes, complications of diabetes with multi organ involvement, thyrotoxicosis due to graves disease, history of malignant thyroid tumors, hyper/hypo thyroid, other endocrine disorders, hepatitis B, C or unknown hepatitis, chronic liver disease or liver failure, known HIV positive person or partner/spouse of PLHA, lymphadenopathy, repeated/prolonged fever, repeated/prolonged diarrhoea, syphilis, gonorrhoea, leishmaniasis, leprosy, chronic infection of kidney/kidney disease/renal failure, stomach ulcer with symptoms or recurrent bleeding, SLE, scleroderma, dermatomyositis, ankylosing spondylitis or severe rheumatoid arthritis, polycythemia vera, unexplained bleeding tendency or bleeding disorders, malignancy, severe allergic disorders, haemoglobinopathies and red cell enzyme deficiencies with known history of haemolysis, patients on anti-arrhythmic, anticonvulsants, anti coagulant, anti thyroid, cytotoxic drugs, recipients of organ, stem cell and tissue transplants.

Blood donation is deferred for 12 months in case of; 

After recovery from major surgery, received a blood transfusion, known case of  Hepatitis A or E, close contact of individual suffering with hepatitis, at risk of hepatitis by tattoos, acupuncture, body piercing, scarification and any other invasive cosmetic procedure by self or spouse/partner, spouse/partner of individual receiving a blood transfusion, recovery from typhoid, GI endoscopy.

Blood donation is deferred for 6 months in case of;

Minor surgery, tooth extraction, dental surgery under anesthesia, dengue/chikungunya following recovery, pyelonephritis ( complete recovery and last dose of medication), dutasteride medication in BPH.

Blood donation is deferred for;

2 weeks following full recovery from measles, mumps, chickenpox.
3 months following full recovery from malaria.
4 weeks after return from a dengue-endemic area if no febrile illness.
4 months following recovery or history of travel to the Zika virus outbreak zone or West Nile virus endemic area.
2 years following confirmation of cure of TB.
2 years following cure and completion of treatment of osteomyelitis.
2 weeks after the last dose of medication for UTI/ acute cystitis.

For donors with anxiety and mood disorder, chronic sinusitis, migraine, conjunctivitis, diarrhea, or had vaccinations ( 28 days deferment), antirabies, hep B immunoglobulin, immunoglobulins (1-year deferment) only after medical considerations donation is accepted.

People on Medications like;

Aspirin, NSAIDs, ketoconazole, Anthelmintic drugs, antibiotics, ticlopidine, clopidogrel, piroxicam, dipyridamole, etretinate, acitretin, Isotretinoin, finasteride, radiocontrast material, oral anti-diabetic drugs can donate blood with a certain period of deferment.

Accepted medications for donors:

oral contraceptive, analgesics, vitamins, mild sedatives or tranquilizers, allopurinol, a cholesterol-lowering medication.

Special considerations for women donors.

Blood donation has to be deferred ;
12 months after delivery
6 months after abortion
During the total period of lactation
period of menstruation

With increased awareness in recent times about the need for blood donation, there is a lot of confusion and myths surrounding the topic. A lot of potential donors are unaware or misinformed. The correct information can make them a major reservoir of our healthcare system. So do your bit today and donate blood if you are a potential donor and save lives.

FAQ’s

Can differently-abled donate blood?
Yes, provided that clear and confidential communication can be established where the donor fully understands the donation process and gives valid consent.

Can a person with the thalassemia trait donate blood?
Thalassemia trait may be accepted if hemoglobin is acceptable.

Can people with tattoos donate blood?
Yes, after 12 months of getting a tattoo the person can donate blood.

Can people with diabetes mellitus donate blood?
Yes, only if it’s under control by diet or oral hypoglycemic medication with no history of orthostatic hypotension, no evidence of infection, neuropathy, or vascular disease. the medication or dosage shouldn’t have been altered in the last 4 weeks.

Can a person with benign thyroid disorder donate blood?
Yes.

I had jaundice, can I donate blood?
Yes, but with exceptions. One can donate blood only if jaundice was due to gallstones, Rh disease, mononucleosis, or neonatal period.

Who can or cannot donate blood?
Please refer to the eligibility criteria in the article.

What are Dos and Don’ts of blood donation?
Dos
The last meal should have been taken at least 4 hours before donation.
Take iron-rich and healthy food.
Take extra fluids and be well-rested with a good night’s sleep.
Wear comfortable clothes that can easily roll up above elbows.
Keep the bandage strip for the next several hours after donation.

Don’ts
Donors can’t be fasting before donation or observing fats during the period of blood donation.
The donor should not consume alcohol and have signs of intoxication before blood donation.
Avoid fatty food.
Don’t do any heavy lifting or vigorous exercise for the rest of the day.

Ruptured Spleen : Symptoms,Treatment and Recovery Time

The spleen is a fist-sized organ next to the stomach and is under the left ribcage. Though the average size of the spleen is 4 inches, it varies from person-person.

It performs vital functions in the body.

  • The spleen filters blood to remove damaged RBC or Red Blood Cells.
  • It helps fight infections since it carries white blood cells or WBC
  • Spleen stores and releases immune cells to reduce tissue inflammation.
  • Speen regulates the RBC, WBC, and platelets levels in the blood.

What is a Ruptured Spleen?

A ruptured spleen is a medical condition caused by the bursting of the surface of the spleen. Damaging the spleen is difficult since the rib cage plays a crucial role in protecting it.
Though the spleen plays a vital role in the body’s defense, a person can survive without it in case of extensive damages. A ruptured spleen can be life-threatening if left untreated.

ruptured spleen  treatment

Ruptured Spleen Symptoms, Treatment and Recovery Time

Causes of Ruptured Spleen

The two prominent causes for ruptured spleen are injuries and enlarged spleen.

  1. Injuries to the spleen by vehicular accidents, sports accidents, or assault are the leading cause of the ruptured spleen.
  2. Enlarged spleen: When the spleen is not functioning well, it will store blood, leading to an enlarged spleen. An enlarged spleen is more susceptible to damage. A slight injury might then cause a ruptured spleen.

Other causes leading to rupturing of the spleen are:

  • Infections
  • Cancer
  • Liver diseases
  • Metabolic disorders

And Also Read more about Liver diseases.

Ruptured Spleen Symptoms

The occurrence of signs of a ruptured spleen varies in duration depending on the intensity of the injury. The key symptoms are intense pain in the left abdomen region and the left shoulder.
Variations in blood pressure cause other symptoms of the spleen injury, including the delayed symptoms because of the rupturing.

  • Nausea
  • Blurred Vision
  • Confusion
  • Anxiety
  • Paleness
  • Fainting
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Tenderness in the area

Diagnosis of Ruptured Spleen

Various means to determine a ruptured spleen are:

  • Physical exam: The doctor performs a physical exam to determine the size of the spleen by gently pressing in the area. This method identifies an enlarged spleen almost immediately.
  • Blood tests: To measure the performance of the spleen, doctors advise blood tests. Platelet counts and the clotting factor evaluates how well the spleen is functioning
  • Abdominal Cavity Scan: A clear sign of the ruptured spleen is blood in the abdomen cavity. An ultrasound scan is a sure means of determining the same. In case of emergency, the doctor might insert a needle into the abdomen and draw fluid samples. The presence of blood in the fluid sample shows a ruptured spleen.

Ruptured Spleen Treatment

The treatment for the ruptured spleen varies according to the severity. The human body can heal itself from minor injuries given enough time. Even then, the patient is under constant monitoring since they might require blood transfusions until the organ heals completely.
If the injury is critical and the doctor feels the damage is irreversible, they perform emergency ruptured spleen surgery to either repair or remove the spleen.

Surgical options to treat the ruptured spleen include:

  • Repairing of Spleen: The procedure involves mending the tear by applying pressure on the spleen or blood vessels until blood clots. If doctors can identify the condition immediately when the rupture occurs, doctors perform arterial embolization to hasten the blood clotting process.
  • Removing a Part of Spleen: Doctors identify the damaged areas in the spleen and perform partial splenectomy. The laparoscopic procedure reduces the risks of infection.
  • Splenectomy: Removal of the entire spleen in a case of extensive damage is splenectomy. Since the spleen fights infections, removal of the organ will make the person susceptible to infections. Hence, doctors strongly advise the patients to take vaccines to help the body cope with this loss. Children are usually at higher risk of infection than adults because of obvious reasons.

Recovery time from Ruptured Spleen Treatment

The recovery time from the ruptured spleen depends on the intensity of the treatment. In case of no surgery, the patient is under constant monitoring and has to make lifestyle changes.
If an operation is performed, doctors prescribe pain relief medications and antibiotics to prevent pain and infections.

Complete recovery usually takes weeks, and often months, based on the age of the patient as well. If the condition is identified early, then the survival rate of patients with the ruptured spleen is high. In case of late diagnosis, there are complications associated with the treatment.

Take extra precautions and monitor your health closely in the recovery phase. Reach out to your doctor for more details on post-operative care and the necessary changes to alter your lifestyle to suit the current body conditions.

Esophageal Varices: Causes, Risk factors and Prevention Tips

The oesophagus (or esophagus) is the tube that carries food from the throat to the stomach. In an adult human being, the muscular duct measures up to eight inches long. The oesophagus runs parallel behind the windpipe, heart, and in front of the spine. Before connecting to the stomach, it passes through the diaphragm.

The muscles in the esophagus play a significant role in passing the food to the stomach and holding the food inside before it turns into energy.

Esophageal Varices

Among several, one of the principal complications that arise in the esophagus is the Esophageal Varices. In this condition, abnormal veins develop at the lower end of the tube. The veins are swollen or enlarged along the wall of the esophagus.

The condition usually goes undetected unless the veins bleed. Esophageal varices – a chronic disease, is manageable with proper medical support and guidance.

Esophageal varices Causes Risk factors Prevention

Esophageal varices Causes

The primary cause for esophageal varices is the malfunctioning of the liver. People who have liver cirrhosis are under constant threat to develop this condition.
The liver cleanses toxins from the body. When the blood flow to this crucial organ is restricted, it flows into the nearby vessels, increasing the supply. Because of this esophagus is one of the several organs that receive excess blood. The blood vessels in the esophagus are small and incapable of carrying surplus blood, leading to swelling up and resulting in varices.

Other contributing factors leading to varices are:

  • Thrombosis or blood clot in the portal vein.
  • Blockage of veins in the liver also known as Budd-Chiari syndrome
  • Schistosomiasis, also known as bilharzia – a disease caused by parasitic worms.

Symptoms

Bleeding is the leading symptom that indicates the oesophageal varices. The rupturing of the veins results in one of the following conditions:

  • vomiting of the blood – hematemesis
  • tarry or black stools
  • blood in the stools

The other symptoms might include:

  • intense bouts of stomach pain
  • pale or yellow skin
  • irregular breathing
  • easy bruising
  • fluid building up in the abdomen region

The symptoms in extreme cases where the bleeding is severe include:

  • loss of consciousness,
  • a person entering the state of shock

Also, Read : Stomach Cancer – Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment

Risk factors

The risk factor depends on the progression of the condition. Not everyone will start bleeding immediately after developing varices. The Esophageal varices bleed under the following conditions:

  • If the patient has large esophageal varices
  • If red marks are present on the esophageal varices.
  • The patient develops high portal hypertension because of continuous pressure applied to the veins.
  • Severe scarring of the liver or cirrhosis is the primary risk factor. As the severity increases, so do the chances of bleeding.
  • Another reason for bleeding can be a bacterial infection. As the bacterial infection increases, it increases the chances of vessels rupture.
  • On detection of cirrhosis and varices, if the patient continues to consume excessive alcohol use, it also increases the chances of bleeding.
  • Esophageal varices can cause excessive vomiting or constipation since processing food becomes difficult.
  • violent coughing spells can trigger the rupture of the veins

Prevention

Correcting the underlying cause is the best way to prevent esophageal varices. A healthy diet and lifestyle to keep the body and the liver healthy is the way to avoid this chronic condition. Failing to accomplish that will cause complications and might lead to the replacement of the liver.

The following healthy measures should be part of daily lives to avoid this and any other health issue.

  • Eat low sodium and high fibre diet.
  • Include a lot of fruits and vegetables in your diet.
  • Maintain a healthy weight
    Avoid drinking alcohol as it can lead to liver damages.
  • Practise safe hygiene protocols.
  • Get periodic health check-ups as per your physician’s advice to avoid serious health blocks.

Esophageal varices treatment

  1. Treating the esophageal varices is very crucial. Without treatment, the condition can prove fatal. Regular follow-up with the doctor is a must as long as this is a chronic condition.
  2. Esophageal varices pathophysiology suggests that there are two ways to treat this disease.
    A. Prevention from bleeding
  3. Once the condition is detected either via endoscopy or imaging, the primary aim is to prevent bleeding of the veins.
  4. If it is small esophageal varices, they control it via medications such as beta-blockers to reduce the pressure in the portal veins.
  5. Esophageal varices banding: If the doctors find you are prone to bleeding, they will suggest variceal banding. Esophageal banding involves pulling the varices into a chamber with the help of an endoscope and tying them off with elastic bands to avoid bleeding.

Endoscopic sclerotherapy is the process of shrinking the swollen veins using medications administered via endoscope.

B. Treating the bleeding

There is over one way to treat bleeding varices. All the preventive measures specified above can be used to stop or minimize the blood supply. In case the bleeding is severe, then the patient needs the following action:

  1. Trans-jugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt (TIPS): It involves adding a shut between the portal vein and the hepatic vein to carry blood from the liver to the heart. The process relives the built-up stress on the portal veins, thus controlling the bleeding.
  2. Distal splenorenal shunt procedure (DSRS): The procedure involves connecting the primary vein from the spleen to the vein of the left kidney. This procedure is more invasive but controls bleeding up to 90%.
  3. Injecting clotting factors via blood transfusion serves the dual purpose of replenishing the lost blood and avoiding further bleeding.
  4. In very severe cases, replacing the liver is the only and the last option.

Read More about the Signs of Ruptured Spleen

It is crucial to know the details of the condition and follow the doctors’ advice. Do not ignore the esophageal varices and self medicate, as it might cause complications. If you are in doubt, contact our doctors at Vydehi for more guidance and help. We are always around to facilitate, to get your health back in shape.

Dermatographia: Symptoms, Causes and Ayurvedic Treatment

Dermatographia or dermatographism is a skin condition. It’s one of the most common types of inducible urticaria occurring in 2-5% of the population. Categorized under physical urticaria, the term Dermatographism means ‘Skin writing’ or ‘to write on skin’. An urticarial eruption is formed on the application of even mild downward pressure in the form of a linear wheal in the shape of whichever external force is applied. A wheal is a circumscribed dermal edema also known as welt or a hive.

Urticaria dermatographia or dermatographism urticaria can be broadly categorized as symptomatic and asymptomatic.
Symptomatic dermatographism is often associated with pruritus, stinging, prickling sensation, and erythematous wheals which is the rarer but more troublesome type of dermatographism. It is idiopathic in nature but often severe at night and aggravated by heat, minor pressure, exercise, stress and emotion, helicobacter pylori, bites, scabies, systemic mastocytosis.
An asymptomatic dermatographism is only presented with the formation of wheal in the shape of trauma-induced.

Dermatographia

 

Dermatographia causes

Although the exact cause for dermatographia disease is unknown, its pathogenesis involves the release of histamine from mast cells.

Although not conclusive the exaggerated biological response called, ‘ the triple response of lewis’, triggered by the mechanical trauma which releases some antigens that react with the bound IgE on mast cells. This leads to the release of histamine and other inflammatory mediators.

  1. The dilated capillaries produce a superficial erythematous phase
  2. Axon-reflex flare and sensory nerve fiber communication causes broadening erythema from arteriolar dilation
  3. Formation of linear wheal from fluid transudation

This is the triple response of lewis. The entire response takes about 5-10 minutes after an external stimulus.

It is known to be seen in diabetic, hyper/hypothyroidism, menopausal(onset), pregnant(mostly second trimester), or medication-related (penicillin) people. Other known risk factors associated with this condition are;

  • Age: mostly in young adults, peak in the second and third decade.
  • Hypereosinophilic syndrome in atopic children
  • Traumatic life events and psychological co-morbidities.
  • Behcet disease
  • Systemic mastocytosis (Congenital symptomatic dermatographism)

Dermatographia Signs and symptoms

  • Formation of erythematous wheals in the form of mechanical trauma induced on the skin even by mild stroking within 5-10 minutes. Except for a very rare type of delayed dermographism where tender urticarial lesion reappears 3 to 8 hours after the initial injury that persists up to forty-eight (48) hours
  • It May or may not be associated with pruritus.
  • Wheals can persist anywhere between 15-30 minutes unlike the normal triple response of lewis that subsides within 10 minutes. Deeper edemas into the dermis form larger wheals.
  • Mostly seen on trunks and extremities. Very rarely on the scalp and genital area(except for dyspareunia and vulvodynia)
  • Histopathologically, dermal edema with few perivascular mononuclear cells is seen.

Also, Read All You Need To Know About Lipomas

Rare subtypes of Dermatographism

  • Red dermatographism (small punctate wheals on repeated friction, predominantly on the trunk, possible association with seborrheic dermatitis)
  • Cholinergic dermographism (large erythematous line with by smaller punctate wheals surrounded by macular erythema with purpura in severe cases)
  • Follicular dermographism (transitory discrete follicular urticarial papules against the bright erythematous background)
  • Cold-precipitated
  • Exercise-induced
  • Familial (probably autosomal dominant inheritance)

Differential Diagnosis

  • False dermographism- Presents with similar symptoms but different mechanisms are involved. They are white, black, and yellow dermatographism. White dermatographism is caused by a blanching response from capillary vasoconstriction secondary to allergic contact dermatitis and is prevalent in atopic individuals. Black dermatographism is a greenish or blackish discoloration of the skin that occurs after contact with metallic objects. Yellow dermatographism is due to the deposition of bile pigments on the skin.
  • Latex allergy mimicking symptomatic dermographia is mostly seen on hands and genital region due to physical contact of latex in gloves, contraceptives, toys, etc.
  • Mastocytosis.

Dermatographia Diagnosis

Primarily, dermographism urticaria is a clinical diagnosis. It is usually made by observing the response in the subject after using moderate pressure to scratch or stroke the skin gently. A tongue depressor is used for this purpose. The site of pressure application is of importance because of the reactiveness of areas the dorsal area or back which is protected from the external environmental influences and pressure than that of more exposed parts like buttocks or limbs. The exaggerated triple response of Lewis points to the diagnosis.
A spring-loaded stylus called a dermographometer is used to apply graded pressure and record skin responses. Its use is mostly limited to the research settings due to its reproducibility.
Hematological and biochemical screening tests are usually normal, except for few cases where increased blood histamine is recorded after experimental scratching.

Dermatographia Treatment

Dermatographia, a benign condition, seldom governs treatment until it is symptomatic. Mostly seen in young adults this condition resolves itself after approximately five years to ten years in the majority of the cases.
Symptomatic dermatographia requires medical attention due to its presentations. It is mostly treated with antihistamines. H1 antihistamines like cetirizine, loratadine are the drugs of choice, and H2 antihistamines like diphenhydramine, hydroxyzine are combined in required cases. Omalizumab has also been considered for treatment and is under research for its efficacy. Phototherapy with Narrowband ultraviolet (UV)-B and oral psoralen plus UV-A therapy has also been advised in a few cases. Adjunctive treatment with vitamin C is also used as a dermatographia cure.
Antihistamines are to be taken under strict medical supervision only as certain activities like driving, operating heavy machinery have to be avoided.
Apart from major pharmacological therapy, prevention and avoidance of aggravating factors such as physical stimuli play a major role in controlling this condition. Good skincare and use of emollients can reduce dry skin thereby aggravating dermographia due to scratching. Wearing soft clothes, reducing stress and anxiety, and practicing yoga all play a key role in controlling this.

Dermatographia Ayurvedic Treatment

Ayurveda, the ancient medicine system of India under the broad heading of twak vikara encompasses many dermatological conditions. Udarda, a Kapha dominant condition, is mainly treated with shodhana ( bio purification procedures) and shamana aushadha ( pacificatory medicines) based on the patient. The internal medications mainly will have the quality of ushna, teekshna, Vata anulomana, and pachana. They subside both Kapha and Vata along with vimargagami pitta. Along with pathya and apathya, dietary and lifestyle modification suitable to patient and disease, Ayurveda has a potential holistic approach to dermatographia. Medicines like Haridra khanda, ardraka khanda, amrita satva, arogyavardhini vati, gandhaka rasayana, aragwadha amrutadi kashaya, dashamoola haritaki,, varanadi kashayam, ayaskriti, abhyanga with katu taila, vardhamana pippali rasayana, etc.

Although not life-threatening, dermatographism is a distressing condition. Asymptomatic dermographism requires no treatment but symptomatic dermographism should be treated till the condition is controlled or resolved. Reach out to our experts at VIMS today, for proper guidance. Our expert team of doctors from ayurvedic and modern fields of medicine is always within your reach.

Also, Read Ayurvedic herbs for skin

Leukoderma Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

Leukoderma, also spelled as Leucoderma, is a disease that causes loss of pigmentation on the skin. The condition causes white patches to appear on the skin and is more distinguishable in people with dark skin.
 
Also termed vitiligo, the condition is termed severe when the spots cover the entire body, including the scalp, eyes, and genitals. It is a long-term skin ailment that at times is incurable. With the help of proper medical diagnosis and a combination of various treatments, patients can manage the disease. All patients do not respond in the same way to the treatments due to different underlying causes; hence the results of the treatment will differ from one to another. 

Types of Vitiligo

Vitiligo or Leukoderma is classified into two main categories -
 
  1. Non-segmental vitiligo
  2. Segmental Vitiligo
Non-segmental Vitiligo
 
Non-segmental Vitiligo (NSV) is the most commonly occurring disease. It is characterized by patches appearing in both halves of the body and often symmetrical in the region in which they appear. According to research, 90% of the people affected with Leukoderma fall under this category. The NSV is further grouped into the following categories
 
  • Generalized or Universal Leukoderma is the condition where the white patches can occur anywhere on the body.
  • Focal vitiligo occurs mostly in children and is restrained in one area of the body.
  • Acrofacial vitiligo is the condition that causes depigmentation around fingers, vitiligo on lips, and the periorificial regions [meaning inside of the mouth, chin, eyelids, nostrils, and upper lips].
  • Mucosal Leucoderma occurs only in the mucous membranes.
Segmental Vitiligo
 
Segmental Vitiligo [SV] is restricted to one segment or one half of the body. The depigmentation occurs most commonly in the areas of the skin associated with the dorsal roots emerging from the spinal cord. SV occurs only in 10% of the patients affected with Lekoderma and is a stable version of the two. The treatment and causes vary from that of NSV, and the appearance is also different.
Leukoderma Causes, Symptoms & Vitiligo Treatment

Symptoms of Leukoderma

To know if a person is affected by vitiligo, one can observe the occurrence of the following symptoms.
  • Depigmentation of the skin areas exposed to the sun
  • Spreading of the white pigmentation in case of an injury while white patches already exist in a different area of the skin
  • If the white patches that are generally harmless start to itch on exposure to the sun, or excessive heat, or when sweating
  • If the depigmentation starts becoming prominent on the face, hands, and other areas of the body
  • Premature greying of hairs
  • Change in the retina color
 The process of depigmentation is usually painless. They can start occurring as harmless small patches and grow in size, as in the case of NSV.

Causes of Leukoderma

Though the exact cause for vitiligo is unknown, some theories try to explain what causes leukoderma. Even after extensive research, what triggers Luekoderma is unknown, but the following reasons are attributed as a combination of one or more factors causing the condition.

  • Autoimmune disorder: It is the condition in which the immune system attacks healthy cells of the body thereby destroying the basic mechanism of the body itself. One of the effects of the condition is the destruction of the melanocytes causing depigmentation on the skin leading to vitiligo.
  • Genetics: According to a study, 30% of the cases are attributed to hereditary reasons. The studies also reveal that stress triggers the genes causing vitiligo causing the condition in the individuals.
  • Infections: One of the most common causes for vitiligo is either viral or bacterial infections like leprosy, syphilis, lichen planus, and other diseases.
  • Occupation: Staying in a job that demands continuous exposure to some chemicals, or sun causing sunburns, also causes Leucoderma.
  • Neurogenic factors – a condition where substances toxic to the melanocytes are released from the nerve ending on the skin, can cause vitiligo.

Leucoderma Treatment

Vitiligo is not a life-threatening disease and does not spread by coming in contact with the person who has it. According to current research trends, there is no cure for vitiligo, but the condition is manageable with various vitiligo treatment options available to patients. Few among them are:

  • Medication – Doctors advise topical creams or ora pills to help repigment the skin, and control inflammation or other effects arising due to depigmentation.
  • Light Therapy – Light therapy sessions involving Narrow-band ultraviolet – B (311) phototherapy and oral psoralen and UVA – PUVA therapy are the two prominent types of light therapy used in treating vitiligo. Of the two, PUVA is more effective in treating the leukoderma occurring in the upper body.
  • Surgery – Skin grafts where the normal skin is removed from one part of the body and is used to cover the affected area is a common treating method for vitiligo. Another similar technique used is Blister grafting.

The main goal among all the treatment methods is to darken the lightened skin patches to avoid further spread of these patches. If the condition is still in its early phases, the application of cosmetics like skin tanners or makeup on the affected area remains the safest option instead of the above-mentioned methods.

Certain individuals also resort to getting tattoos to cover up the affected areas, however, this method is not very popular since the chances of triggering another patch due to allergic reactions are always on the higher side.

Also, Read Best Ayurvedic Herbs for Skin

Leukoderma treatment at home

Several home remedies help in managing leukoderma at home, however, they do not provide a complete cure. Few methods one can try at home to manage vitiligo are –

  • Dietary changes: Consuming food rich in vitamin C, zinc, and copper is said to stimulate the healing process.
  • Apply a mixture of basil leaves and lime juice to the affected area to increase melanin production.
  • Applying a mixture of turmeric and mustard oil twice a day on the affected part is another way of increasing melanin production.

If you are diagnosed with Leukoderma, few things to always remember are-

  • Make sure to apply sunscreen while stepping out into the sun to avoid sunburn and rashes.
  • Keeping yourself well hydrated also helps in avoiding rashes.
  • Most importantly, do not fall prey to scams that claim to cure vitiligo in 30 or 40 or any number of days.
  • Reach out to counselors to deal with the social stigma attached to this skin condition, and do not take drastic or uninformed measures in the heat of the moment.

Always consult your dermatologist or reach out to our doctors at VIMS for more details on how to manage Leucoderma. We are always around the corner to help you fight the social stigma attached to this skin condition. Remember, this is just a condition of the body and not the end of the world.

Also, Read How to Get Rid of a Boil

Menopause: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatments

Menopause is an irreversible part of the overall aging process involving a female’s reproductive system. It is diagnosed retrospectively after twelve consecutive months of no periods (amenorrhea) without any pathology. The final menstrual period is a normal physiological process that marks the end of a woman’s reproductive cycle resulting from loss of ovarian follicular activity.

Premenopause

There are three stages to the transition from reproductive to the non-reproductive cycle of the uterus, which include

  1. Perimenopause
  2. Menopause
  3. Postmenopause

Premenopause refers to the period before menopause. Postmenopause is the period after menopause; generally, 24 to 36 months after the last period, where symptoms and signs of menopause subside, and perimenopause is the period around menopause, usually around 40–55 years. Perimenopause is the part of the climacteric when the menstrual cycle is typically irregular. Climacteric is the time during which a woman passes from the reproductive to the non-reproductive stage.

Age of Menopause

age of menopause

age of menopause

The age of menopause ranges between 45–55 years, the average being 50 years. The age of menopause is genetically predetermined apart from being influenced by certain factors like severe malnutrition and smoking.

Early Menopause

If menopause occurs at or below 40 years, it is said to be premature or early menopause. Menopause that occurs before this age, whether natural or induced, is known as early menopause. Along with hot flashes, mood swings, and other symptoms which usually accompany menopause, early menopausal women also have to cope with additional physical and emotional concerns.
Reasons for early menopause include genetics, lifestyle factors, chromosome defects, autoimmune diseases, and epilepsy.
Signs and symptoms of early menopause include irregular periods, noticeably longer or shorter periods than usual, heavy bleeding, spotting, mood swings, change in libido, vaginal dryness, hot flashes, night sweats, loss of bladder control.
Complications of early menopause apart from the most common infertility include increased risk of cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, depression, and dementia.

Menopause Symptoms

menopause symptoms
One can observe any of the following menstruation patterns before menopause;

  • Abrupt cessation of menstruation (rare)
  • A noticeable decrease in both amount and duration of the menstrual cycle due to spotting or delayed and ultimately lead to cessation
  • Irregular menstruation with or without excessive bleeding is one more typical pattern. One should exclude genital malignancy before declaring it as the usual premenopausal pattern.

Related Menstrual Hygiene – The Present Scenario and Adverse Effects

The significant symptoms and the health concerns of menopause are:
Vasomotor symptoms: The characteristic symptom of menopause is hot flush. A hot flush is characterized by the sudden feeling of heat followed by profuse sweating. It may also include symptoms of palpitation, fatigue, and weakness. The physiologic changes with hot flushes are perspiration and cutaneous vasodilatation. It may last for 1–10 minutes and maybe at times unbearable. Another aspect is sleep depravity due to night sweats.
Urogenital atrophy: Low estrogen levels may cause dyspareunia and dysuria. Along with these vaginal infections, dryness, pruritus, and leucorrhea are also common. The urinary symptoms are urgency, dysuria, recurrent urinary tract infection, and stress incontinence.
Osteoporosis and fracture: Following menopause, there will be osteoporotic changes due to a decline in the collagenous bone matrix. During menopause, bone loss increases to 5% per year. Primary (type 1) osteoporosis is due to estrogen loss, age, deficient nutrition (calcium, vitamin D), or hereditary. Osteoporosis may lead to back pain, loss of height, and kyphosis. Fracture of bones is a significant health problem. The fracture may involve the vertebral body, femoral neck, or distal forearm (Colles’ fracture). Morbidity and mortality in older women following the fracture are high.
Cardiovascular disease and Cerebrovascular disease: Oxidation of LDL and foam cell formation cause vascular endothelial injury, cell death, and smooth muscle proliferation. All these lead to vascular atherosclerotic changes, vasoconstriction, and thrombus formation. Risks of ischemic heart disease, coronary artery disease, and strokes are increased.
Psychological changes: An increased frequency of anxiety, headache, insomnia, irritability, dysphasia, and depression. They may also have dementia, mood swing, and an inability to concentrate.
Skin and Hair: There is thinning, loss of elasticity, and wrinkling of the skin. After menopause, there is some loss of pubic and axillary hair and slightly balding, which may be due to low estrogen levels with a normal level of testosterone.
Sexual dysfunction: Estrogen deficiency is often seen with decreased sexual desire. This may be due to psychological changes (depression anxiety) and atrophic changes of the genitourinary system.

When to see a doctor?

  1. Cessation of menstruation for consecutive 12 months during climacteric.
  2. The appearance of menopausal symptoms ‘hot flush’ and ‘night sweats’.
  3. Vaginal cytology – showing maturation index of at least 10/85/5 (Features of low estrogen).
  4. Serum estradiol : < 20 pg/mL.
  5. Serum FSH and LH: >40 mlU/mL (three values at weeks interval required).
    Only a few women seek medical attention for perimenopausal symptoms; others either tolerate the changes or don’t have symptoms severe enough to require medical attention. The signs may be subtle and develop gradually. If the symptoms interfere with day-to-day life or well-being, such as hot flashes, mood swings, excessive bleeding, or changes in sexual function, it is advised to consult a doctor.

Treatments for Menopause

Normal menopause rarely requires anything else except for symptomatic treatment; however, doctors should adequately counsel every woman with postmenopausal symptoms about the physiologic events to remove her fears and minimize or dispel anxiety symptoms, depression, and insomnia. Reassurance is essential.
Lifestyle modification includes – increased physical activity, reducing high coffee intake, smoking, and excessive alcohol. Must have adequate calcium intake (300 mL of milk) and reduce medications that cause bone loss like corticosteroids.
A nutritious diet – balanced with calcium and protein is helpful.
Supplementary calcium – daily intake of 1–1.5 g can reduce osteoporosis and fracture based on physicians’ advice.
Vitamin D supplementation of vitamin D3 (1500–2000 IU/day) and calcium can reduce osteoporosis and fractures. Exposure to sunlight enhances the synthesis of vitamin D3 in the skin.
Based on symptoms and requirement, the physician may prescribe bisphosphonates, fluoride, calcitonins, SERMs, clonidine, thiazides, gabapentin, phytoestrogens, soy protein.
After careful evaluation and necessity, HRT ( hormonal replacement therapy) might also be suggested, which comes with its own benefits and risks.

Menopause is an unavoidable natural phenomenon that brings about changes in women. It’s best to be prepared knowing the symptoms and consult your doctors on the onset of menopause. Equip yourself with knowledge about menopause if you are around 45 years of age so that panic is the least of your concerns when it sets in. Our experts are always within your reach if you have any problems or in need of help. We are always with you, for – your health is our priority.

Left Ventricular Hypertrophy (LVH) – Symptoms, Causes and Treatment

Left Ventricular Hypertrophy or LVH is a heart condition that causes mortal danger to one’s life if left untreated. LVH, as it is popularly known, is the thickening and enlargement of the heart wall in the heart’s left ventricle, a prominent blood-pumping chamber.
The thickening causes the heart muscles to lose their elasticity and become rigid. The condition adds extra pressure to the heart to fill up the chamber and pump the blood. In the long run, LVH declines the heart capacity to produce enough pressure to pump blood to the body.
The condition develops gradually, and at times goes unnoticed until it reaches critical stages. Regular heart health checks, hence, make a huge difference in keeping up with the heart-wellness.

Left Ventricular Hypertrophy

LVH

Concentric LVH

Concentric LVH is one of the sub-types and results from the heart adapting to hypertension or other heart-related diseases. It affects men and women alike. The symptoms of concentric hypertrophy found in ECG/EKG include

  • Increased heart wall thickness
  • Normal Left ventricles cavity
  • Increased Relative wall thickness
  • Increased Left Ventricular mass

Left Ventricular Hypertrophy (LVH) Symptoms

Left ventricular hypertrophy occurs commonly in people with a history of high uncontrolled blood pressure. Hence, having blood pressure in control is one of the main ways to avoid LVH. LVH leads to a higher risk of congestive heart failure and irregular heart rhythms, which are life-threatening heart conditions.
Some of the general traits experienced by people with LVH are:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Fatigue, Dizziness, or fainting
  • Chest pain after exercising or performing a strenuous activity
  • Heart palpitations or fluttering of the heart

Causes of LVH

The most common cause of LVH is uncontrolled high blood pressure. Other causes might include

  • Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is a genetic condition that causes the heart wall to b slightly thicker than the average heart walls.
  • The heart valve regulates the blood flow direction in the heart. Irregular or malfunctioning of these heart valves exerts extra pressure in the heart chambers, leading to thickening muscles.
  • Congenital heart diseases that form during pregnancy do not allow the heart to develop as it should. If the cases are mild most of the times, it does not require rectification. In severe cases, the defect may be corrected via medications or surgery.
  • Aortic valve stenosis is when the aortic valve that supplies blood to the body and is present between the lower left chamber of the heart is narrow. This condition can occur as congenital heart disease or in people over 65 due to calcium deposits in the valve.
  • Athletic Training is one more reason that causes more stress exertion on the heart. In most cases, it is not fatal until another condition exists along since heart enlargement is common among athletes.
  • Similar to calcium deposits mentioned, there are chances that protein deposition can also cause Left Ventricular Hypertrophy. This process or condition is called Amyloidosis.

When to see a doctor?

LVH goes undetected in the early stages since the heart is trying to adjust to the changes in the best possible way without realizing it’s an abnormality. The symptoms often manifest in the later stages. Experiencing a combination of at least two of the following problems indicates that one should consult a doctor as soon as possible.

  • Frequent chest pain that lasts longer than minutes each.
  • Difficulty in breathing after exercising or after mild activities
  • Sudden headaches, difficulty in speaking, weakness in a particular part of the body for no reason
  • Nausea, constant lightheadedness, or loss of consciousness frequently

Left Ventricular Hypertrophy (LVH ) Diagnosis

A combination of the following tests diagnoses LVH as it does not have a standalone test.

  • Electrocardiogram: This is the first step in determining if LVH exists. The electric signal is sent through the heart to observe the pattern. Any deviation from the regular pattern is an indication of an underlying problem in the heart.
  • Echocardiogram: If the doctor has a reason to suspect LVH, the second step they recommend is for the patient to undergo Echocardiogram. It is the process of producing live-action images of the heart and revealing the structure of the heart using sound waves.
  • MRI: Until the cardiologist has second doubts regarding the diagnosis, MRI is not suggested to determine LVH. It is the process of heart imaging to diagnose abnormalities in the heart.

Left Ventricular Hypertrophy (LVH) Treatment

Getting blood pressure under control should ease the LVH condition. In most cases, the medications are taken to maintain regular blood pressure help prevent further enlargement of the heart and help reverse LVH. In various instances, like calcium or protein deposits found in the valves or heart, the medications might slightly differ.
The medications widen the blood vessels, lowers pressure on the heart, and decrease the pressure on the heart by improving the blood flow. The examples of these medications are:

  • Calcium channel blockers are the medications that prevent calcium from entering the heart and also widen the valves.
  • Angiotensin Receptor Blockers (ARB)
  • Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors
  • Diuretics
  • Beta-blockers are not usually recommended as the first medication. Only when other drugs fail to produce the expected results, doctors prescribe beta-blocker since they cause variations in the hormones.

The final option is surgery to repair the valves or the vessels, restricting the blood’s proper entry to the heart.

What can you do at home?

One of the best ways to avoid LVH is to follow a healthy lifestyle at home. Following a disciplined routine can help one avoid not only heart complications but other health problems as well.

  • Quitting Smoking is the easiest way to avoid blockages in hearts and lungs since the residue from the smoke causes them.
  • Losing weight can decrease the risk of LVH in obese people since they tend to have a slightly larger heart than ordinary weighing people. Studies have shown that losing weight can also help in reversing the condition in some cases.
  • Following a heart-healthy diet that involves fiber-rich food like fruits, green leafy vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy products, and good fats like olive oil and ghee can help avoid calcium and protein depositing in the heart.
  • Avoiding extra salt intake helps maintain the proper blood pressure, thus enabling the heart’s efficient working.
  • Quitting or avoiding alcohol consumption helps decrease blood pressure since alcohol is said to increase the same.
  • Following a regular exercise routine for at least 30 minutes daily is a sure-shot way of avoiding health complications.
  • Effective stress management is the primary way to decrease the pressure on the heart. Stress varies the levels of the hormones, thus affecting the heart and body’s efficient performance.
  • Follow medications routine prescribed by the cardiologist if you are diagnosed with LVH. Do not change the dosage of the medicines without consulting the doctor.

Also, Read Seven Simple Tips to Strengthen your Heart

How to Get Rid of a Boil: Causes, Symptoms & Home Remedies

Boils or furuncles are skin infections and occur due to the clogging of the oil glands, hair follicles, or skin pores. The area surrounding the boils is usually reddish when they appear on the skin. Gradually as the day passes, pus forms under the patch and can be painful.

Often the boils can be treated at home and do not need medical attention unless it grows big and starts paining immensely.

how to get rid of a boil

how to get rid of a boil

Types of Boils

Large boils are medically known as skin abscesses. They usually occur on the back, chest, face, or buttocks. Other areas they can occur are the underarms or groin. Most of the skin abscesses will go away without treatment or with the usage of available Over-the-Counter drugs. They rarely become challenging to treat and may require consultation with a dermatologist, who will drain the boil and advise proper medications by studying the underlying cause.

Carbuncles are another type of boils. Carbuncles usually occur in a group and are more frequent in middle-aged men. They are a result of more widespread infection compared to boils and are severe as well. It is safe to consult a medical practitioner in such cases as improper handling can lead to disastrous results.

Another type of boils is the one that occurs on the eyelids and is called Sty(Stye). An infection in the sebaceous glands of the eyelids causes Sty. Since eyes are delicate organs, it is better to consult an Ophthalmologist instead of treating them at home.

Causes of Boils

Boils commonly occur in areas that come in frequent contact with the clothes. The constant rubbing often irritates the skin and can cause minor cuts or bruises. Germs or bacteria entering through these cuts are the primary reason why boils occur.

The leading causes of boils are

  1. The bacteria staphylococci that are present on the skin enter the skin via minor cuts or burns and causes boils
  2. Having close contact with people who have boils and sharing the products used by them
  3. Weak immune system due to conditions such as HIV or chronic disease like diabetes
  4. Existing skin disease such as eczema, psoriasis, or oily skin prone to acne outbreaks
  5. Allergy to medications or medications that can weaken the immune system
  6. Ingrown hair that cannot come out
  7. Splinters or small foreign particles logged in the skin
  8. Poor nutrition and personal hygiene

Symptoms of Boils

The first symptoms of boils are the appearance of reddish spots on the surface of the skin. After a few days, the spots not only turn painful, but pus starts accumulating beneath the skin.

The symptoms of severe infection are:

  • The skin around the boils turns red, painful, warm, and swollen.
  • Increase in the size of the boil
  • Several boils may form around the original boil forming a cluster and severe infection.
  • Developing a fever or chills after a few days of the occurrence of the boil
  • Swelling of the Lymph nodes

Though boils appear similar to acne, they are much more severe and painful. The treatment also varies for both skin conditions.

Also Read Leukoderma Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

Treatment for Curing a Boil

Often when they appear, the main question will be how to get rid of a boil since they look ugly and are painful.

Sometimes the boils need not be treated; they disappear on their own. Only when it grows painful and does not go away after a week of appearing will it have to be treated by medical practitioners.

We have a few home remedies to treat boils when they are at the initial stages. They are

home remedies for boils

home remedies for boils

  • Keep warm towels against the boils for 10 mins at least four times a day. This enhances blood circulation around the area, and thus, the WBC’s present in the blood will be able to fight off the infection faster.
  • Put indirect pressure on the boil and take care not to burst them since it increases the risks of expanding the contamination to the nearby skin surfaces.
  • Clean the infection if pus starts oozing out of the boil with anti-bacterial soap. Then dress the wound appropriately with gauze. Clean the wound area at least three times a day till it heals completely.

Do’s and Don’ts for boil treatment at home.

The home remedies for boils help in avoiding complications are later stages. However, one has to follow specific protocols for proper healing of the boils.

  • If boils have developed on the face, do not repeatedly touch them or squeeze them.
  • If the boils have developed due to shaving, avoid shaving the area until the boil has ruptured and healed to avoid the infection’s spread.
  • Do not use sharp objects for popping the boils, as they increase the chances of infections. Usually, the boils rupture on their own with heat compress within a week to ten days.
  • Do not share the towels or clothes with others to minimize the chances the spreading the infection.
  • Do not use swimming pools.
  • Wash the hands frequently to avoid infecting the area with cuts and burns.
  • If there are nicks and cuts, ensure sterilizing the area immediately with alcohol-based solution, and do not touch the area with unclean hands until the wound is healed.
  • Regularly wash commonly used towels and bedsheets.

Boils usually can be tended at home and do not require a medical practitioner’s attention. However, when one develops high fever and chills or more boils making the condition severe, consult a physician or a dermatologist to help treat the boil. Another scenario to consult a medical practitioner is when boils appear on the face. They will drain the pus carefully and prescribe antibiotics to heal the wound. In case the boils are really large, the pus sample may be sent to the lab to determine the type of infection, and antibiotics will be prescribed based on the results.

Despite taking all the precautions, one cannot avoid developing boils. Once they appear, one cannot get rid of a boil immediately or overnight since it is an infection. Treating it right is the only way to cure the boils, but one has to make efforts to stay healthy and follow personal hygiene to avoid complications.

Also, Read