Archive for November, 2007

Classifications of Pneumonia According to Causes

Wednesday, November 28th, 2007

Pneumonia is sometimes classified according to the cause of pneumonia:
 
Community-acquired pneumonia : This takes place in the course of your daily life while carrying out daily life activities.

Hospital-acquired (nosocomial) pneumonia : This kind of pneumonia is common with people who are hospitalized. The chances increases if the patient is on a mechanical ventilator. This type of pneumonia can be extremely serious, especially for old people, young children and people with chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases (COPD) or HIV/AIDS.
 
Aspiration pneumonia : This kind of pneumonia occurs when foreign substance is inhaled (aspirated) into your lungs — most often when the contents of your stomach enter lungs after vomiting. This commonly happens when a brain injury or other condition affects your normal gag reflex.
 
Pneumonia caused by opportunistic organisms : This type of pneumonia strikes people with compromised immune systems.Organisms that aren’t harmful for healthy people can be extremely dangerous for people with AIDS, organ transplantation and other conditions that impair the immune system. For example, P. carinii pneumonia almost never occurs in otherwise healthy people.
 
Emerging pathogens : Outbreaks of the H5N1 influenza (bird flu) virus and severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) can also cause pneumonia infection.

Symptoms of Pneumonia

Tuesday, November 27th, 2007

pneumonia.jpg

Pneumonia symptoms vary depending upon the age factor and causes. Some common symptoms of the disease can be summed up below :-

  • Fever 
  • Cough and cold
  • Unusual rapid breathing
  • Breathing associated with grunting or wheezing sounds
  • Hard breathing in which child’s rib muscles retract.
  • Vomiting
  • Chest pain
  • Abdominal pain
  • Inactiveness
  • Loss of appetite

In some extreme cases,lips and fingernails turns bluish.Sometimes when the pneumonia takes place in the lower part of the lungs near abdomen,breathing problems may be substituted by mild fever and abdominal pain or vomiting.
When pneumonia is caused by bacteria, patient suffers from high fever and unusually rapid breathing. When pneumonia is caused by viruses, symptoms appears more gradually. Wheezing may becomes common in viral pneumonia.

In infants, pneumonia due to chlamydia may cause conjunctivitis (pinkeye) with only mild illness and no fever. When pneumonia is due to whooping cough (pertussis), the child may have long coughing spells, turn blue from lack of air, or make a classic “whoop” sound when trying to take a breath.

Image Courtesy : Medicalbook.com

Pneumonia Overview

Wednesday, November 21st, 2007

Pneumonia can be better described as inflammatory illness of the lung. It is also known as lung parenchyma/alveolar inflammation and (abnormal) alveolar filling. Alveole is a microscopic air-filled sacs of the lung responsible for absorbing oxygen from the atmosphere. Pneumonia is a common illness which occurs in all age groups, and is a leading cause of death among the elderly and people who are chronically and terminally ill. Pneumonia can occur due to various reasons including infection with bacteria, viruses, fungi, or parasites, and chemical or physical injury to the lungs. The causes can be termed as Idiopathic.

Treatment Options for Hemorrhoids

Thursday, November 15th, 2007

Some people successfully apply natural procedures for treatment or reversal of chronic conditions. These procedures largely echo the prevention measures. However, you should always inform your doctor of any self-care measures you have taken, including herbal or “natural” remedies, to avoid possible drug interactions. Although unorthodox, olive oil has been known to bring relief.If a blood clot has formed within an external hemorrhoid, your doctor can easily remove the clot with a simple incision, which may provide prompt relief.

Some people require the following medical treatments for chronic or severe hemorrhoids:
 
Rubber band ligation are elastic bands which are applied onto an internal hemorrhoid to cut off its blood supply. Within several days, the withered hemorrhoid is sloughed off during normal bowel movement.
 
Hemorrhoidolysis/Galvanic Electrotherapy which involves desiccation of the hemorrhoid by electrical current.

In sclerotherapy (injection therapy) sclerosant or hardening agent is injected into hemorrhoids. This causes the vein walls to collapse and the hemorrhoids to shrivel up.
 
Cryosurgery helps in destroying hemorrhoidal tissues by using frozen tip of a cryoprobe. Rarely used anymore because of side effects.
 
Surgical procedures

The vast majority of patients with symptom-causing hemorrhoids are able to be managed with non-surgical techniques. In the practice of a surgeon adept at managing hemorrhoids non-operatively, it is estimated that less than 10% of patients require surgery if the hemorrhoids are treated early.
 
Medications

If hemorrhoids are producing only mild discomfort, doctor may suggest over-the-counter creams, ointments or pads containing witch hazel or a topical anti-inflammatory agent containing hydrocortisone. This local treatment, in combination with daily warm baths, may relieve symptoms.

Symptoms of Hemorrhoids

Sunday, November 11th, 2007

Hemorrhoids symptoms are first observed in rectum and the rectal region.The anal bleeding is regarded as main symptom. However bleeding takes place only at the advanced stage.The common symptoms of the disease are as follows:-

  • Formation of blood clots inside the anus.
  • Irritation or itching in the rectal region.
  • Swelling in the anal region. 
  • Obstruction in passing stool.
  • Lumps hanging from the anus.

hemorrhoid.jpgInternal Hemorrhoids : In these hemorrhoids, straining or irritation from passing stool can injure a hemorrhoid’s delicate surface and cause it to bleed. Few drops of blood on your toilet tissue or in the toilet bowl water can be observed. Occasionally, straining can push an internal hemorrhoid through the anal opening. If a hemorrhoid remains displaced (prolapsed), it can cause pain and irritation.

External hemorrhoids : These hemorrhoids tend to be painful. Sometimes blood may pool in an external hemorrhoid and form a clot (thrombus), causing severe pain, swelling and inflammation. When irritated, external hemorrhoids can itch or bleed.

Causes of Hemorrhoids

Tuesday, November 6th, 2007

The causes of hemorrhoids relates to genetic predisposition (weak rectal vein walls and/or valves), straining during bowel movements, and too much pressure on the rectal veins. Due to such pressure blood gets blocked in the veins and causes them to swell.Similarly, sitting for prolonged periods of time can cause hemorrhoids. Hemorrhoids can also cause by hypertension, particularly in the portal vein due to the connections between the portal vein and the vena cava which occur in the rectal wall – known as portocaval anastomoses.

Poor toilet habits are responsible for the damage to the rectal veins and thus causes Hemorrhoids. Although some of our toilet habits are temporary, they can create serious bowel related problems.

Insufficient time for Bowel Movement is one of the toilet habits that can be responsible for the occurrence of Hemroids.

Increased straining during bowel movements, (e.g. constipation, diarrhea) may lead to hemorrhoids.

Pregnancy causes hypertension and increases strain during bowel movements, and thus hemorrhoids are often associated with pregnancy.

Not taking enough fluids may result in dry and hard stool, and that can facilitate the development of Hemorrhoids.

Consumption of alcohol in excess can also lead to hemorrhoids.

Hemorrhoids : What is it ?

Thursday, November 1st, 2007

The term hemorrhoids refers to a condition in which the veins around the anus or lower rectum are swollen and inflamed.Hemorrhoids are commonly known as piles.About 60% of people across the world are suffering from the symptoms of Hemorrhoids.Although Hemorrhoids do not cause serious health problems, ignorance towards its existence can produce severe health complications.