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Viewing posts from: February 2018


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osteoarthritis Osteoarthritis - Joint issues are one of the top reasons people visit their doctor, including for osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis and is seen especially among an estimated 27 million Americans age 25 and older. It is by far the most common type of arthritis, and the percentage of people who have it grows higher with age.   Sometimes osteoarthritis it is called degenerative joint disease, and mostly affects the cartilage, rather than the bone itself. Healthy cartilage allows bones to glide over one another. It also absorbs energy from the shock of physical movement. In osteoarthritis, the surface layer of cartilage breaks and wears away. This allows bones under the cartilage to rub together, causing pain, swelling, and loss of motion of the joint.   Over time, the joint may lose its normal shape. Also, small deposits of bone, also known as osteophytes or bone spurs, may grow on the edges of the joint. Bits of bone or cartilage can break off and float inside the joint space. This causes more pain and damage.   Those living with osteoarthritis usually have joint pain and stiffness. Unlike some other forms of arthritis, such as rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis affects only joint function, including pain and stiffness. The most commonly affected joints are those at the ends of the fingers (closest to the nail), thumbs, neck, lower back, knees, and hips. It also can occur in a single joint or can affect a joint on one side of the body much more severely.   Osteoarthritis affects different people differently. It may progress quickly, but for most people, joint damage develops gradually over years. In some people, osteoarthritis is relatively mild and interferes little with day-to-day life; in others, it causes significant pain and disability.   Talk to your doctor if you think you have Osteoarthritis. We can provide helpful treatments to help with your symptoms.  

Adult Acne

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  adult acne   Adult Acne. You had it when you were a teenager - acne. It was supposed to go away after adolescence, but why do those pesky pimples keep showing up well into adulthood?   Adult acne can be so frustrating. A treatment that worked so well during our teen years can be useless — or make acne worse. If this happens, you may wonder whether those blemishes really are acne. After all, why do adults get acne?   Some adults continue to get acne well into their 30s, 40s, and even 50s. It is even possible to get acne for the first time as an adult. Dermatologists call this “adult-onset acne.” It is most common among women going through menopause.   Women tend to get adult acne more often than men do. If you’re getting acne as an adult, it is likely due to one or more of the following reasons:  

  • Women often experience fluctuating hormones, that can lead to breakouts:
    • Around their periods
    • During pregnancy, perimenopause, and menopause
    • After discontinuing (or starting) birth control pills
  • Stress: Researchers have found a relationship between stress and acne flare-ups. In response to stress, our bodies produce more androgens (a type of hormone). These hormones stimulate the oil glands and hair follicles in the skin, which can lead to acne. This explains why acne can be an ongoing problem when we find ourselves under constant stress.
  • Family history: Does a close blood relative, such as a parent, brother, or sister have acne? Findings from research studies suggest that some people may have a genetic predisposition for acne. People who have this predisposition seem more likely to get adult acne.
  • Hair and skin care products: If you have adult acne, you should read the labels on your skin care and hair care products. Make sure that you see one of the following terms on every container:
    • Non-comedogenic
    • Non-acnegenic
    • Oil-free
    • Won’t clog pores
You want to make sure your moisturizer, cleanser, sunscreen, and all other products contain one of these terms. These products are least likely to cause acne.   Adult acne can be really frustrating. Talk to your doctor if you need medical treatment or suggestions on how to handle it.  

What is Dialysis? And Why is it Needed?

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What is Dialysis? And Why is it Needed? dialysis Many have heard the term dialysis, but a lot of people don’t actually know what it is or why it’s used.  If you’re in that same boat, keep reading. Let’s first start with the your kidneys. The kidneys are responsible for filtering waste products from the blood. Dialysis is a procedure that is a substitute for many of the normal functions of the kidneys. The kidneys are two organs located on either side in the back of the abdominal cavity. Dialysis can allow individuals to live productive and useful lives, even though their kidneys no longer work adequately. There are over 450,000 patients in the united states receiving dialysis.   What does Dialysis do? Dialysis helps the body by performing the functions of failed kidneys. The kidney has many roles. An essential job of the kidney is to regulate the body's fluid balance. It does this by adjusting the amount of urine that is excreted on a daily basis. On hot days, the body sweats more. Thus, less water needs to be excreted through the kidneys. On cold days, the body sweats less. Thus, urine output needs to be greater in order to maintain the proper balance within the body. It is the kidney's job to regulate fluid balance by adjusting urine output. When the kidneys fail to filter the blood effectively, and fluid and waste products build up in the body to a critical level a person may need to start dialysis. The two main causes of kidney failure and need for dialysis treatment are diabetes and high blood pressure. When a person’s levels of waste products in their body become so high they start to become sick from them, he or she may need dialysis. The level of the waste products usually builds up slowly. To help doctors decide when dialysis is necessary for a patient, they will order tests that measure several blood chemical levels in the patient’s body generally via a urine sample. The doctor also uses other indicators of the patient's status to decide about the need for dialysis. If the patient is experiencing a major inability to rid the body of excess water, or is complaining of problems with the heart, lungs, or stomach, or difficulties with taste or sensation in their legs, dialysis may be indicated even though the creatinine clearance has not fallen to the 10 cc per minute level.   Have more questions about Dialysis or having kidney problems? Ask your doctor.  

Why are Blood Clots Dangerous?

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Why are Blood Clots Dangerous? Blood Clots Your blood clots. It just does. And it generally helps to heal your wounds. But when do blood clots become dangerous? Blood clotting is a normal function that occurs when you have an injury. If you scrape your knee, blood clots at the site of the injury so you don’t lose too much blood. But sometimes blood clotting can cause complications and be very dangerous, even causing death. Sometimes a clot will form inside a blood vessel, which is either an artery or a vein. Clots can happen even when there is no injury. Clots can also fail to dissolve after an injury has healed. This can cause serious complications if not discovered and treated. Some complications could be serious and even life-threatening, especially if a clot forms in a blood vessel. It’s important to understand the symptoms of clots so you can get treatment before complications occur. You may be at risk for a blood clot, if you:

  • are obese
  • are a smoker
  • are over the age of 60
  • take oral contraceptives
  • have a chronic inflammatory disease
  • have atrial flutter or atrial fibrillation
  • have congestive heart failure
  • have cirrhosis
  • have cancer
  • have fractures in your extremities, especially the lower extremities or pelvis
  • are pregnant
  • have a family history of clotting disorders
  • are unable to walk
  • sit for long periods of time
  • travel frequently
A blood clot can form in any blood vessel in your body. It can end up in the lungs, heart, brain, or other areas if it breaks away and travels through the blood. These clot movements can lead to serious complications as the clot disrupts the flow of blood to important organs. This can result in heart attack and stroke. Have more questions about blood clots? Talk to your doctor about your risk of having blood clots.


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Shingles Shingles Have you had the chickenpox? Before the vaccine, Chickenpox was a common virus that children got causing red, sore, itchy pockmarks (or blisters) on their skin. Once the virus cleared, children would start feeling better and the pox would disappear. But little do those that had chickenpox know, that there’s an adult form that you can get.   What are Shingles?  Shingles is an infection caused by the varicella-zoster virus, which is the same virus that causes chickenpox. Even after the chickenpox infection is over, the virus may live in your nervous system for years before reactivating as shingles. Shingles may also be referred to as herpes zoster. This type of viral infection is characterized by a red skin rash that can cause pain and burning. Shingles usually appears as a stripe of blisters on one side of the body, typically on the torso, neck, or face.   When will they be gone? Most cases of shingles clear up within two to three weeks. Shingles rarely occurs more than once in the same person, but approximately 1 in 3 people in the United States will have shingles at some point in their life, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.   Symptoms of Shingles? The first symptoms of shingles are usually pain and burning. The pain is usually on one side of the body and occurs in small patches. A red rash typically follows. Rash characteristics include:

  • red patches
  • fluid-filled blisters that break easily
  • a rash that wraps around from the spine to the torso
  • a rash on the face and ears
  • Itching
  Who can get Shingles? Shingles can occur in anyone who has had chickenpox. However, certain factors put people at risk for developing shingles. Risk factors include:
  • being 60 or older (although there are many cases of shingles in younger ages)
  • having diseases that weaken the immune system, such as HIV, AIDS, or cancer
  • having had chemotherapy or radiation treatment
  • taking drugs that weaken the immune system, such as steroids or medications given after an organ transplant
  There is a shingles vaccination that can help you prevent getting shingles, so if you’ve had chickenpox and have some of these symptoms you may have shingles. Schedule an appointment with your doctor today to get checked out.