INNOVATION IN REHABILITATION AFTER SPINAL CORD INJURY: ORTHOTICS

Another area of importance to spinal cord injury is orthotics, the design and making of braces and splints. Many people with spinal cord injury can benefit from appropriate bracing and splinting of the limbs and trunk. Bracing is very important for preserving stability of the spine after it is injured, keeping it in the proper alignment. For individuals with paraplegia, lower extremity bracing often allows walking with crutches. Upper extremity splinting can greatly enhance hand function in people with quadriplegia. Of particular note is the wrist-driven flexor hinge splint (also called a tenodesis splint), which uses wrist extensor muscles to give power for gripping objects between the thumb and fingers (with a pinch-type grip). {Extensor muscles contract to straighten a limb; flexor muscles contract to bend it.) New materials for braces and splints are under development. As these materials improve, braces become lighter and sturdier, making them more durable and more efficient.
Powered orthotics – motorized braces and splints – are also being developed, which are particularly important in combination with FES. As we noted above, FES is sometimes impractical because of the great number of muscles involved in controlling the movement of a particular joint. Some laboratories are working on systems that combine FES and powered braces. For example, one approach to restoring the ability to walk in people with paraplegia is the use of FES to provide control of the knees and ankles, a rigid spinal brace to control the trunk, and a powered joint to control the hip.
Bracing of the hip is a major challenge in orthotics. The human hip has enormous flexibility, with freedom of motion in many directions. It also undergoes a great deal of physical stress during normal daily activities. The design of an external, mechanical joint that can support the hip of individuals with paraplegia is therefore a challenge. The standard approach has been to use a metal joint on the side of each hip (the lateral sides), with motion in at least one axis of rotation. However, this device takes up too much space and makes sitting in a normal chair or in a typical wheelchair difficult, and the use of this brace is therefore impractical. Most individuals with paraplegia need to be able to switch easily and quickly between walking (with crutches and braces) and using a wheelchair. A promising approach to this problem is the development of a joint that sits medially (between the thighs) instead of laterally (at the side of the hip). A single midline metal joint positioned below the groin can substitute for both hip joints, providing a tremendous advantage for stability in the upright position and making walking much easier.
*155/156/5*
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Posted in Healthy bones Osteoporosis Rheumatic | Comments Off

FOODS PROMOTING CANCER: EXCESSIVE SALT AND SUGAR

Excessive Salt
Many nutritionists believe that salt is too freely used in the ordinary diet and, could be one of the main causes of cancer. Most cancer patient are therefore, prescribed salt-free diets. It is claimed that salt is often responsible for excessive hydrochloric acid in the stomach. This burns and injures the tissues and leads to stomach ulcers, which may even develop into cancer. The Crile clinic in Cleveland insists on salt-free diets for patients suffering from stomach ulcers. The liberal intake of salt often nullifies the beneficial effects of foods such as celery, cucumbers, greens and spinach.
World Health Organization (WHO) reported from Japan that it has been statistically demonstrated that the frequency of cancer of the stomach in Japan, is definitely related to the quantity of salt consumed by the natives. The more salt in the diet, the more stomach cancer.
Sugar
Sugar is also considered harmful and its excessive consumption can lead to the development of cancer. Recently, a Nobel Prize winner of the University of Pennsylvania Medical School, Dr. Otto Meyerhoff, spoke of the evidence connecting the excessive consumption of sugar with cancer by calling attention to “the appetite of tumours for sugar.” He suggested that the growth of cancerous tissue might possibly be stopped if biochemists could find a way of curing this appetite.
*42/355/5*
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Posted in Cancer | Comments Off

REDUCING YOUR RISK OF CORONARY ARTERY DISEASE: IMPROVING YOUR ACTIVITY LEVEL – A FITNESS PLAN FOR YOUR HEART

A cardiovascular fitness program has three parts: warm-up, conditioning aerobic exercise, and cool-down. The exercise should be frequent enough, intense enough, of sufficient duration, and of the appropriate type to induce a training effect.
In general, try to set up your program so that you expend about 1,000 to 2,000 calories a week with exercise. Walking 10 to 20 miles per week accomplishes that goal for the average person. (See the chart on page 1 73 to compare other activities.) There is no evidence of a further reduction in cardiovascular risk by exercising to burn off more than 2,000 calories per week, unless you are trying to lose weight.
A warm-up phase develops and maintains muscle and joint flexibility and prepares the body for the conditioning phase of the program. The essential parts of the warm-up are stretching and low-intensity  endurance exercises, which gradually increase your heart rate, body temperature, and blood flow to the muscles.
You may include muscle strengthening and toning exercises to improve your total fitness level. The warm-up phase should last 5 to 10 minutes.
The conditioning aerobic phase of your program may include any aerobic activity that requires continuous rhythmic muscle contraction of the legs and perhaps the arms. Walking, biking, swimming, jogging, cross-country skiing, rowing, rope skipping, dancing, and racket sports are good examples of aerobic exercises. Choose something that you enjoy and will want to continue.
Adjust the frequency, intensity, time, and type (FITT) of your exercise program so you expend the desired amount of energy to achieve your fitness goals. For example, you might walk 4 miles 5 times in 1 week, and 5 miles 4 times in another week. You may spend an hour walking 4 miles on 1 day, but jog 4 miles in 40 minutes on another day.
*312\252\8*
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Posted in Cardio & Blood-Сholesterol | Comments Off

EAT YOUR WAY TO HEALTHY BONES: GRACE’S STORY

race smoked her last cigarette just weeks before her first bone
scan. The smoking, a history of heavy drinking (though it
ended thirty years ago), chronic digestive problems requiring various medications, and an extremely stressful job from which she recently retired had taken their toll: she had osteoporosis in both her hip and spine, falling more than three standard deviations below normal bone density. Grace had never taken hormones and wasn’t about to start now, nor did she want any prescription medications, despite the severity of her loss.
Instead, she began exercising—walking and doing yoga on alternate days—started taking supplements of calcium, vitamin D, and trace minerals, and changed her diet to lower simple carbohydrate intake, increase protein, and generally improve the nutritional quality of the food she ate. On top of that solid foundation she added a regimen of herbs to help her balance her hormones and handle stress, including red clover, black current seed oil, omega-3 oils, and amino acids. She also used natural digestive enzymes to control her troublesome digestive symptoms and improve her absorption of nutrients.
Although I usually recommend waiting at least a year for a follow-up to allow plenty of time for improvements to take full effect, Grace had a second bone scan six months later and her progress was already apparent. While her spine showed very minor increases in density, her hip went from -3.62 SD to -2.94. She obviously still had a way to go to eliminate her risk of fractures, but felt confident that her “all natural” approach was serving her well.
*39\228\2*
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Posted in Healthy bones Osteoporosis Rheumatic | Comments Off

COPING WITH SEIZURES AND EPILEPSY: THE FIRST “BIG” SEIZURE WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW – WILL MY CHILD BE RETARDED?

No! A single tonic-clonic seizure does not cause mental retardation or brain damage! Nor do recurrent seizures cause mental retardation or brain damage. It is true that tonic-clonic and other seizures occur more often among children who already have brain damage, learning problems, or mental retardation, but there is no evidence that seizures make these conditions worse. Most children with such problems do not have seizures, and most children who have seizures do not have these problems.
Of course you are afraid that seizures will recur. But don’t let this anxiety control your life or your child’s life. Don’t allow it to make you so overprotective that your child can’t play or go outside without your constant supervision. If no new seizure comes, think of the single seizure like a fall out of a tree, something frightening at the time but over and not influencing your life or your child’s life forever.
If seizures do recur, most likely they will recur within two to three months after the first seizure. It might be reasonable to be a bit more cautious during this brief period. Maybe your child shouldn’t be climbing trees or be in other potentially dangerous situations during this time. But there’s no reason why he can’t swim, play most sports, go on field trips, and lead an otherwise normal life.
*167\208\8*
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Posted in Epilepsy | Comments Off

GUIDELINES FOR DIABETES CARE: CLINICAL ASSESSMENTS – DILATED EYE EXAMINATION

The presence of diabetic retinopathy is strongly related to the duration of diabetes. After 20 years of diabetes, virtually all type 1 and 60-70% of type 2 diabetics have evidence of retinopathy. In type 2 diabetes, duration may be difficulty to determine accurately, and approximately 20% may have retinopathy at the time of first recognition of diabetes. In the first 5 years of type 1 diabetes, vision-threatening retinopathy is rarely seen. Factors that affect progression or retinopathy are glycemic control, hypertension, and pregnancy. There is an association between plasma lipid levels and hard exudates, which usually a found in the macular region. Regular dilated eye examinations are necessary to diagnose retinal or macular changes that may be amenable laser photocoagulation. The efficacy and safety of this procedure h been scientifically demonstrated in two major National Institutes Health sponsored trials: the Diabetic Retinopathy Study and the Early Treatment Diabetic Retinopathy Study (ETDRS).
*41\357\8*
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SEXUAL ACTIVITY IN GYNECOLOGICAL CANCER: WHAT IS NORMAL?

It is abundantly clear that the type of intimate relationships and sex that we have, and the frequency with which we have it, is as variable as human nature itself. What is enjoyable for one person may not be for the next. The psychological aspects of our sexuality are just as important as the physical and indeed for the woman the physical act is usually the lesser in importance.
The effects of the surgery, radiation and chemotherapy are profound and involve the psyche as well. Both the body and mind need healing. Perhaps in no other area will good communication with your partner be as important. Unless he or she knows how you are . . . physically and mentally . . . then sex will be less satisfactory than before your diagnosis.
Most sexual pleasure stems from the clitoris and in the vast majority of cancers, the clitoris will be unaffected. Orgasm for the woman can easily occur without penetration if oral or digital stimulation or masturbation takes place. Feedback is very important! Your partner will be scared of hurting you and you may feel different to what you did before your diagnosis so keep him or her informed! Touching is a very important part of human relationships too. Touch IS intimate and can occur even if sexual desire is low.
Top tip
Even though it may be difficult for you to discuss your intimate feelings with your partner, the quicker you do, the quicker he or she will have an understanding of how you are reacting and feeling. This will then lead to both of you finding acceptable solutions to satisfying both your needs. Remember – your partner may have the same anxious feelings as you, and feel just as distressed, vulnerable or helpless.
*35/144/5*
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Posted in Cancer | Comments Off

HOW BDD AFFECTS LIVES: ACCIDENTS

BDD can cause accidents. Janet had several of them. “I’m a mirror-driven person,” she said. “I check all the time. The worst part of it is I check in the rearview mirror while I’m driving. A few years ago I had a car accident because I was looking in the mirror instead of the road.” Many others describe near misses. “I check the rearview mirror, trying to reassure myself,” a salesman told me. “I almost hit a tree once, and I almost ran over someone.” Some people, trying to stop this behavior, turn the rearview mirror away from them, or remove it altogether, but then can’t see what’s behind them—another setup for an accident. Others check a pocket mirror while driving instead of looking at the road.
One woman repeatedly hurt her back while bending into pretzel-like positions to obtain a better look in the mirror. She wasn’t satisfied with a standard view—she needed to get an even closer look at a small scar on the side of her neck. Another person fell off a 3-story ladder while examining his reflection in a window.
*140\204\8*
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Posted in Anti Depressants-Sleeping Aid | Comments Off

HIV: MOUTH PROBLEMS-SORES, BLISTERS, OR ULCERS ON THE LIPS OR MOUTH: HERPES SIMPLEX

Sores or blisters on the lips or mouth or in the throat are usually caused by one of two conditions. One is an infection by the virus herpes simplex; the other is a condition called aphthous ulcers, whose cause is unknown.
Herpes simplex-The sores in the mouth called cold sores or fever blisters can be an infection caused by the herpes simplex virus. The sores usually start as an area of irritation or pain that becomes inflamed, then forms a watery blister that breaks and forms an open sore with pus, and finally scabs over and heals. The sores occur on the lips, in the mouth along the cheeks, on the roof of the mouth or palate, or on the back of the mouth. These sores are usually round or oval, measure about a quarter of an inch or less in diameter, and can have a characteristic white raised border. The sores of herpes can be very painful and often interfere with chewing; when in the back of the mouth or esophagus, the sores can interfere with swallowing.
Herpes simplex remains in the nerves serving the area of the mouth for the remainder of the person’s life; it can be reactivated and cause new sores. The interval between outbreaks is unpredictable, but outbreaks are frequently associated with stress, exposure to sunlight, surgery, colds, menstrual periods, fever, and pneumonia. These associations explain the common name of these sores: cold sores or fever blisters.
Infections of the mouth from herpes simplex are extremely common: probably 50 percent of healthy Americans have had this infection at some time. Herpes simplex infections of the mouth are more frequent, more severe, and last for longer periods in people with HIV infection. This is especially true of the later stages of the disease when the CD4 cell count is low and other types of infections are also more common.
Herpes simplex can be spread to others, but many people already have had it, and others who get it develop only trivial problems. When sores are active, it is reasonable to exercise restraint in contact such as kissing and to avoid sharing items that might have saliva on them.
The usual treatment is with acyclovir (Zovirax). Acyclovir is available as an ointment to place on top of sores, as a pill to take by mouth, or as an intravenous preparation. Administration by mouth or by vein is usually preferred, though the choice between options depends largely on the severity of the sores. Because herpes simplex infections tend to recur when treatment is discontinued, long-term treatment with acyclovir by mouth is sometimes advocated once the sores have healed.
*120\191\2*
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TREATING PHOTOAGEING: COSMETIC CREAMS, VITAMIN TABLETS AND BEAUTY THERAPY

Cosmetic creams
Many cosmetic companies claim that their products have anti-wrinkle properties and can even repair the cells. These claims are not based on scientific fact and are confusing and misleading to the general public. Recently, several companies have incorporated sunscreen agents in their night creams in order to ‘legitimately’ claim anti-ageing properties. This is obviously deceptive and inappropriate.
Vitamin tablets
Vitamin tablets have also been promoted as anti-ageing agents. Current research is looking into the benefits of vitamin therapy in the ageing process. Although there is some evidence that vitamins behave as anti-oxidants and can influence the ageing process, it is still too early to draw any definite conclusions.
Beauty therapy
Beauty treatments have been used for many years in an attempt to prevent and treat ageing skin. Although facial treatments and massages are very pleasant and relaxing, they do not prevent or treat ageing. More recently beauty therapists have advertised new treatments for ageing and wrinkles, including the use of cold lasers, regenerating ampoules and skin stimulating techniques. Although these sound very attractive, they have no proven scientific benefit. Nonetheless, the mystique of the beauty industry continues to promise the impossible.
*67/150/5*
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