Saturday, September 21, 2013

Endocrine Bone Disease

Exploring the Mystery of Endocrine Disorders

Disorders involving the endocrine system can result in a number of other diseases and physical conditions. One such problem is endocrine bone disease such as Osteitis Fibrosa Cystica.

This is a condition where a person's calcified bone is reabsorbed and then replaced by fibrous tissues. Underlying conditions such as hyperparathyroidism are often the catalyst for this type of bone disease. This type of endocrine problem might also be referred to as Von Recklinghausen's disease.

Von Recklinghausen's disease of bone results when a person suffers from the condition of hyperparathyroidism and is additionally found to have elevated levels of serum calcium, decreased phosphorus levels, and elevated levels of alkaline phosphatase.


This is a serious health issue that is generally the result of an adenoma being present in the parathyroid glands. Hyperparathyroidism can also occur in instances of renal failure.

The bones will lose calcium, become thin and brittle and multiple cystic areas (osteitis fibrosa cystica) will be present.

The cystic areas are the result of calcium loss in the bones. The leached calcium salts are excreted through the kidneys and urinary system. This type of condition will often lead to fatigue, weakness, kidney stones and pathological bone fractures.

Radiology scans will clearly show the many cystic areas that are located within the long bones of the body. There may even be some cortical erosion noted in the phalanges and within the area of the skull you can find more of the cysts as well as granular mottling.

The amount of urine being excreted by the affected individual will sharply increase as the body attempts to rid itself of the excess minerals and salts. The blood serum is also noted to have increased levels of calcium and decreased levels of phosphates.
Treatment of choice is for the tumor to be surgically removed.

More about Endocrine Disorders

Cushing's syndrome is an endocrine disorder that results from excessive amounts of glucocorticosteroids being produced in the body. Although an underlying disorder of the endocrine system is the most common cause of this health problem there is another trigger that may be responsible.

Long term use of steroids can also result in Cushing's syndrome. Patients who are using steroid medication as part of a post-transplant regimen or those individuals who are taking steroids for chronic ailments such as RA (rheumatoid arthritis) and asthma are also at a higher risk for developing this syndrome.

There are certain physical characteristics that help a physician zero in on this diagnosis. For instance the patient may exhibit obesity and display a flushed, plump face. Rarefaction of the bones and pathological fractures are frequently noted. Females may also complain of physical concerns such as excessive body and facial hair. These women may also be suffering from an abnormal cessation of their normal menstrual cycles.

A vascular Changes in Body Joints

Knees, hips and other major joints will often be affected by avascular changes. Although these circulatory problems can often be helped by a simple lowering of the amount of steroids being prescribed many patients will still require surgery to replace the damaged joints.

An excessive amount of adrenocortical hormones is frequently the trigger for primary Cushing's syndrome. This condition can also result from adrenal gland tumors. In some instances adrenal gland hyperplasia is the causative factor and some patients develop Cushing's disease as a secondary effect related to a pituitary basophil adenoma. These latter two conditions are generally treated with total ablation of the adrenal glands.

Cretinism or Congenital Hypothyroidism

A deficiency in the level of certain thyroid hormones can result in both mental retardation and dwarfism. The possibility of a patient having this endocrine disorder is an avenue that should be explored immediately so that early diagnosis and treatment can be accomplished.

Clinical symptoms include retarded mental and physical development; a dull facial expression, excessive fatty tissues and significantly altered eyebrows. Patients who suffer from congenital hypothyroidism only have the inner aspect of their eyebrows present. The middle arch and outer eyebrow is missing.

A simple test will show that there is a lack of thyroid hormone present. This is all that is required to make a clinical diagnosis, but the supporting symptoms listed above are certainly factors to take into consideration. Treatment with thyroxine will create a dramatic improvement for these patients.


This endocrine disorder is due to the lack of anterior pituitary hormones. The failure to secrete these important chemical compounds can result in obesity, or dwarfism accompanied by a delay in mental and sexual development. In either instance there may be additional orthopedic problems related to slippage of the femoral epiphysis.


This medical condition results from the production of excess growth hormones. The usual cause is an acidophilic adenoma. Extremely large amounts of growth hormones are able to trigger 'gigantism' in a person with epiphyses that have not fused together. In cases of gigantism the patient could suffer impairment and delays regarding their sexual and mental development.


Another disorder of the endocrine system is known as acromegaly. This type of condition is the result of too many growth hormones being secreted once fusion of the epiphyses has taken place.

In these situations the individual will display thick, coarse skin and complain of generalized fatigue and weakness.

The skull, hands, feet, facial bones and mandible may be grossly enlarged in relation to other areas of the body. Once radiological scans are completed the X-rays are used to positively diagnose the problems with any enlarged bones. An actively growing adenoma could even result in an expansion of the sella turrica area in the skull.

Natural and Organic Arthritis Pain Relief

Arthritis is a joint disorder featuring inflammation. A joint is an area of the body where two different bones meet. A joint functions to move the body parts connected by its bones. Arthritis literally means inflammation of one or more joints. Arthritis is frequently accompanied by joint pain. Joint pain is referred to as arthralgia and that is when pain relief formulas.

An arthritis or joint pain is caused mainly due to suppression of digestive fire. This results in poor digestion,which leads to accumulation of undigested wastes in the body resulting in buildup of waste matter. The toxins reach different parts of body and get accumulated at joints. The disease term arthritis is looks like the singular in number but the disease is comprised of more than 100 distinct conditions and can affect people at any stage of the life.

The two most common form of arthritis pain are Osteoarthritis and Rheumatoid Arthritis with the symptoms like back or hip pain, knee pain, arm pain, wrist pain and pain or inflammation of other areas as well. This is when one looks to get relief from low back pain or over painful joint problems.

Arthritis suffers include man, woman, children and adults. The statistics shows that there are more than 350 million people have been victimized by the disease arthritis world wide. Among the US population there the figure reaches to 40 million people are affected by this disease and the ¼ of them is children. Depending on the disease they the have more than 21 million people suffer from Osteoarthritis and 2.1 million people have the symptom and advance stage of the disease Rheumatoid arthritis. The women are struggling a lot with more than 60% of mark.

There are many different types that affect different parts of the body. Some of those are:

Tendinitis – targets tendons

Sclerodermal – thickening of the skin and connective tissue

Fibromyalgia – muscles will be sore and tender to the touch

Articular or joint types of arthritis – gout and lupus, tend to be the most painful

Osteoarthritis- Osteoarthritis is mainly caused by the break down and the eventual loss of the cartilages. The cartilage is the protein substance that provides the cushion for the bones to avoid the friction of rubbing while working. Work related repetitive injury and the physical trauma are the main cause for getting affected by Osteoarthritis.

This type of arthritis mainly affects hand, wrist, knee and spine. One of the main and unique reasons of developing Osteoarthritis is the age.

Rheumatoid Arthritis- Rheumatoid Arthritis is an autoimmune disease that causes the chronic inflammation of the joints. Patients with autoimmune diseases have the antibodies in their blood and target their own tissues and this will be associated with inflammation. Rheumatoid arthritis can cause inflammation in the tissue around the joints and can affect other organs like hearts, blood.

Omega-3 fatty acid, Gamma-linolenic Acid, Boswellia and Devil’s claw are the renowned natural and organic arthritis products [] along with the other most effective chemical based medication.

Magic Pain Reliever For RA Joint Pain

So that joint pain is back in action again and you have run out of choices on what to do. But fellow rheumatoid arthritis sufferers seem to trust calendula oil to do miracles. So what would you do?

Calendula is an ordinary plant that grows in any soil. However, it is widely found in Europe, USA and in Western parts of Asia. Known from its botanical name Calendula Officinalis, the plant belongs to the same family of daisies and ragweed.

As per its medicinal value, the yellow-gold petals of calendula are known to perform miracles. If you haven't heard about Calendula, you would have probably heard of Garden marigold, pot marigold or poet's marigold. All these names are used to refer to the same plant.

Rheumatoid arthritis and Calendula goes hand in hand because it acts as a perfect companion that relieves joint pain. Known from the early Persian and Greek societies, marigold carries an impeccable reputation for relieving swellings and pains. Thanks to its anti-inflammatory nature and anti septic qualities, it is also used for healing wounds.

Although Calendula does not provide any cure or long term relief for rheumatoid arthritis, many people who use calendula infusions believe that it has magical properties to relieve joint pain. On a scientific level, using marigold as herb activates carotenes, polyphenols and phytosterols together with EFAs that act as a penetration formula that could drastically improve the blood and oxygen flow in the affected areas of your body.

Although there are many novel means and methods of pain relief for rheumatoid arthritis joint pain, natural remedies based on topical ointments are known to be best for they carry little or no side effects. Another plus side of herbal remedies is that they usually provide a galore of healthy remedies as opposed to western medicine which tries to eliminate a single symptom.

Furthermore, marigold can be used if you suffer from other painful conditions such as gastritis, burns or eczema. It is also used as a home remedy in some parts of the world to treat minor issues such as headaches, toothaches, ulcers, varicose veins and colitis.

Marigold may be one in thousand natural products that work well for joint pain relief. So read up on the subject, as much as you can, before making a decision on using it. You should also beware of allergies that can be caused by natural products.

While you search for products that include the essence of Calendula goodness, be cautious about so called herbal remedies that promise you a world full of relief. As you know through experience, joint pain associated with rheumatoid arthritis is not something that will easily go away or ameliorate. Therefore, don't let fake products and false promises put your hopes up only to leave you disappointed at the end. Speak to someone who has already experienced the magic of marigold before opting in for any products that claim to contain its goodness. First hand information always speaks much more genuinely than sales pages you find online.

Determining the Factors That Cause Hip Arthritis

Arthritis is a disease that affects the movement of the body that causes pain and loss of movements of the joints. It is usually chronic that can last on and off of a person's lifetime. There are over a hundred known kinds of arthritis that affect many areas of the body. In some forms of arthritis, there are associated diseases which affect tissues and other organs of the body. Determining the cause of your hip arthritis can be a little difficult. There are several factors that contribute to arthritis.

Some of these factors of what causes arthritis are:

Heredity or Genetics - This cause is not well understood. There is no exact explanation how heredity or genetics contributes to the formation of arthritis. Nonetheless, there are genetic variations that point to what causes your arthritis.

Age- As we age, cartilage becomes brittle and has lesser capacity to heal and repair itself.

Weight - Excessive weight can contribute to your hip arthritis because the joint has to support the load or the weight of a person.

Hazards at work- there are specific work load that have a higher risk of developing arthritis like heavy construction and jobs that are very physical.

Previous injury- Previous major injuries can be considered as causes to hip arthritis.

Illness and infection - a joint infection, multiply recurrence of gout and other medical conditions can contribute to the development of arthritis.

There is no known cure for arthritis. However, with early detection, it can help start the appropriate treatment as soon as the person begins to notice symptoms of arthritis. It is a fact that people cannot avoid old age or change genetics. But people can take control of their weight, the freedom to choose a job with varying activities, a healthy diet rich in omega 3, 6, and 9 oils to maintain a healthy joint and not get overweight.

In addition, before taking any medicines or alternative treatments, it is recommended to seek medical advice that can help plan daily routines and give advices that can help relieve arthritis.

The causes of hip arthritis can be managed effectively. Knowledge and understanding are the keys to deal with the discomfort. People with arthritis should never allow this disease to cripple them and make this a huge barrier to live a happy life. With right medication, change of lifestyle and proper exercise for arthritis can aid people with arthritis to bring down pain and the inflammation of joints under control.

5 Powerful Juice Recipes for Arthritis Sufferers

Juicing can be a powerful way to combat the inflammation and pain caused by arthritic conditions. A variety of delicious juice recipes are available to help you manage your arthritis pain.

Arthritis is a painful, inflammatory condition of the joints that afflicts men and women of all ages. It involves the breakdown of cartilage, which normally acts as a cushion for your joints. In the absence of cushioning cartilage, bones rub together in a way they were not intended to, which can cause pain.

There are as many as one hundred types of arthritis, ranging from autoimmune conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis to the more common osteoarthritis which affects most people as they age. Some forms of arthritis can even affect children. Most arthritis is associated with stiff joints that may also be swollen, creaky, and painful.

Joints affected by arthritis may have limited movement and in severe cases may become deformed in appearance. In rheumatoid arthritis joints may be red and warm to the touch and are typically equally affected on both sides of the body. All forms of arthritis can range from very mild to quite debilitating.

Many plants contain powerful anti-inflammatory compounds that can help dramatically reduce symptoms. The standard "Western" diet, which includes a lot of pro-inflammatory foods such as red meat, dairy, refined and processed grains, and refined sugar, is believed to promote conditions such as arthritis. A diet built around fruits and vegetables helps to prevent chronic disease, including certain arthritic conditions.

Fruits and vegetables believed to be effective for those with arthritis pain include:

  • ginger

  • pineapple

  • papaya

  • blueberries

  • grapefruit

  • spinach

  • grapes

  • plums

  • collard greens

  • kale

  • pears

  • bok choy

  • sour cherries

  • pomegranate

  • cauliflower

  • raspberries

  • strawberries

  • onions

  • apples

  • carrots

  • beets

  • garlic

  • lettuce

Juicing concentrates the healthful compounds in these plants, allowing you to benefit from them more effectively than by eating small amounts of the whole fruit or vegetable. By harnessing the powerful antioxidants and enzymes of raw fruits and vegetables, using these juice recipes for arthritis may increase your joint mobility and comfort and reduce swelling.

You can also increase the anti-inflammatory effectiveness of your juice recipe by mixing it with green tea, raw cold-pressed flax seed oil or liquid fish oil. These all have additional properties that make them healthful elements in an anti-inflammatory diet.

Green tea contains epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) which has been shown to be helpful in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.

Flax and fish oils contain omega 3 fatty acids which are useful for a variety of conditions including various forms of arthritis. These can also be mixed with fresh juices.

The following juice recipes for arthritis can all be easily made using most electric juicers.

Pineapple, Carrot & Celery Juice

5 carrots

2 stalks of celery

4 oz pineapple

1 tsp lemon juice

Papaya Orange Juice

翹 papaya, peeled

1 large orange, peeled

Papaya Blueberry Juice

2 cups blueberries

翹 papaya, peeled

Broccoli Carrot Juice

1/2 cup fresh broccoli, cut in pieces

3 medium carrots, roots only

1 apple, core removed

1/2 lemon, peeled

Sour Cherry-Pomegranate Juice

2 cups sour cherries

1 pomegranate, skin removed

1 apples, core removed

For each recipe, simply juice the listed ingredients in an electric juicer.

You can find other juicing remedies for arthritis on the internet or in books about juicing. However, many of the most successful recipes come from experimentation, so don't be afraid to use the list of fruits and vegetables above to come up with ideas for new juice combinations. You just might invent a juice that tastes fantastic while providing great relief for your achy, stiff joints!

Friday, September 20, 2013

How to Treat Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis

Believe it or not you can in fact be born with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), where in the U.S approximately 300,000 babies a year are diagnosed with some form of arthritis with RA being the most common.

Known as juvenile rheumatoid arthritis or JRA, this is often detected when your toddler or young child will complain of stiffness, joint pain and swelling.

JRA Cause

The cause is still not fully understood. Genetic traits may play a part but why your own body mistakenly attacks its healthy cells at such a young age - known as auto-immune disorder - causing the joints to swell is unclear, however what triggers this action is thought to stem from an environmental toxin.

JRA Symptoms

Like many forms of JRA, it can either go undetected for years or the symptoms will become noticeable shortly after birth.

As mentioned, swelling, joint pain and stiffness, especially before your child gets up in the morning can be worse before the day pans out and occasionally the lymph nodes will swell up, where a fever might develop along with a rash.

Internal organs can also become affected but this is rare.

Diagnosing JRA

If you feel your child has some form of arthritis or you are simply concerned over the joint pain they're experiencing, visit a pediatric rheumatologist.

They will carry out the standard tests such as a blood test, a physical, ask about the symptoms and maybe take some xrays.

This diagnosis won't confirm JRA but once all alternative ailments have been ruled out and if the symptoms still persist after 6 weeks, then JRA is often confirmed.

There are 3 types of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis.

1. Systemic JRA

This is the least likely form of JRA and includes all the symptoms listed above and it also affects the internal organs.

This is the most serious form of JRA and accounts for 20% of all JRA cases. It also increases your childs chances of JRA not disappearing but developing into RA in their teens and twenties.

2. Pauciarticular JRA

This affects roughly 50% of JRA cases where most children grow out of it, but you have to be careful with one of the symptoms which is swelling of the eyes that can lead to a loss of vision down the years, so be sure to consult an ophthalmologist.

It will only affect a few joints, those being the major ones like the arm and knee joint.

3. Polyarticular JRA

This is quite serious as 30% of polyarticular sufferers are unable to shake off this form of JRA in childhood.

It frequently affects a handful of both big and small joints and is predictable in its nature by targeting the same joints on each side of the body.

Anemia is also a risk so plenty of physical therapy is advised to keep the child active and fit.

JRA Treatment

Fortunately modern medicine and natural supplements today will help prevent JRA from flaring up, where a worst case scenario would affect the child's bone development.

This quite severe case though is now treated through physical therapy and medication, restricting any potential growth defects.

However, what's disturbing in the West is that like adults who are prescribed NSAIDs, so are children.

This is worrying because NSAIDs can deliver dangerous side effects and can also affect the health of the liver, kidney and heart.

VIOXX and Celebrex were recently withdrawn from the market for posing exactly these dangers, so if you want to avoid these pharmaceutical anti-inflammatory supplements, and not place your child in harms way, the following natural anti-inflammatory ingredients will help reduce the swelling safely, numb the pain and increase bone density.

  • Glucosamine Complex

  • Reishi

  • Chondroitin Sulfate

  • MSM

  • Magnezium and Calcium Suplements

  • Vitamin C and D

  • Ginger

  • Tongkat Ali

  • Capsaicin

  • White Willow Bark

Arthritis Flare-Ups: Don't Ignore Them!

Once you have been diagnosed with arthritis and you have chosen, with your doctor or naturopath, a course of action, you will probably enter a 'remission' phase (I did, thanks to my homeopath), after which, you may face a 'flare-up'. In fact, most forms of inflammatory arthritis, including ankylosing spondylitis, are made of these periods when the disease is either manageable or completely absent from your body.

What is a flare-up?

Simply put, it is a phase when your arthritis symptoms get significantly worse; if you have symptoms all the time then these may become unbearable during this phase; if you don't have symptoms most of the time, those phases are when you actually have symptoms. In severe cases, your joint stiffness and pain can be so bad that daily activities become unbearable; the affected joints may also become swollen and red and, to make matters worse, you may be 'hit' by severe fatigue. These flare-ups can appear suddenly and they can be very distressful. I remember I was on holiday in Las Vegas when once night I had such sudden, severe pain in my right knee that, the following days, it was practically impossible for me to walk: I was young and I was extremely distressed by the whole situation. When my knee became swollen like a balloon (it almost felt as if it was full of liquid), I took matters in my own hands and 'resolved' my rheumatoid arthritis.

What are the causes of a flare up?

Many 'specialists' maintain that the causes are still unclear or not fully understood. What we do know, is that it can be caused by 'triggers': the main trigger is stress, of course, and this can be almost undetected by you if it's some form of mild anxiety due to factors you may be overlooking: in my case my worst flare up was caused by my mother's visiting me for a long period (it was challenging at times). I had completely overlooked it but, when my homeopath persuaded me to write a chart of my 'worst phases', including the onset of the disease, it was clear that they were all linked to my mother and my relationship with her (and various events within this relationship). This helped my homeopath find the right course of action and now, I am delighted to say, my flare ups consist only of extremely mild sensations (I cannot call it 'pain', since it's far from painful) in my knee and, equally delightfully, they last only hours and disappear for weeks. I can still link those extremely mild events to stressful events or challenging times. For other people who may not suffer from stress at all, physical traumas (falling, illnesses or even pregnancies) can be the triggers.

Emergency home measures during these phases. What works for some may not work for others, of course, but many resort to a temporary use of painkillers and anti-inflammatory medication (the latter is probably even more important); they are not going to cure the disease nor even tackle the 'root' of the problem, but these two measures may make many sufferers feel better in the short-term. Eating food which has anti-inflammatory properties is also essential. Do not ignore these phases, though, because untreated inflammatory conditions of your joints will weaken them further, some times irreversibly. Although it may be tempting to avoid movement, lack of physical activity is always worse in the long run: low-impact exercises and activities are best for those severely hit by arthritis, such as swimming. At the same time, don't exert yourself doing things which bring no benefit to your body if you find them hard to do: if house keeping has become a struggle, delegate or get a cleaner a few times a week instead.

During these phases it is always important to see your rheumatologist and check if further deterioration of the affected area has taken place. Even if you are being treated by a naturopath or homeopath for your arthritis, checking your joints during a flare up is beneficial and a great way to monitor the progress and efficacy of the treatment received.

Top 7 Ways To Treat Arthritis

Arthritis is a term used to describe more than 100 different conditions that affect and cause pain to your joints. However, along with medication and exercise therapy, here are some other helpful ways you can try when treating arthritis:

1. Physical therapy

This form of therapy restores or keeps the range of motion in your joints and strengthens the surrounding muscles. A physical therapist can help you learn how to use supportive devices, such as crutches, canes, and braces, and also teach you to do everyday tasks with as little pain as possible.

2. Heat and cold therapy

Apply heat to your joints to increase blood flow and loosen the joints. Apply cold to your joints to relieve pain.

3. Hydrotherapy

Not only is soaking in a whirlpool or hot tub pleasurable, but it may also help to loosen tight joints and reduce some of the pressure on your aching joints by providing heat and buoyancy.

4. Diet therapy

Certain foods are linked to arthritis symptoms. Milk and cheese were found to cause symptoms. Other research shows foods in the nightshade family (chilli and bell peppers, eggplants, tomatoes, and potatoes) trigger arthritis flare-ups.

Other studies show that foods containing omega-6 fatty acids (vegetable oils such as safflower, soy, sesame, and sunflower) can produce inflammatory chemicals in the body. On the other hand, foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids (salmon, sardines, and mackerel) may have an anti-inflammatory effect.

5. Antioxidants

Not having enough antioxidants (molecules that help fight against free radicals - destructive molecules made in the body by a chemical process called oxidation), such as vitamins E and A, and beta-carotene, could be a precursor to rheumatoid arthritis. People with rheumatoid arthritis had lower levels of several types of antioxidants, including the beta-carotene and vitamins A and D. Additional studies have found that vitamin E may help ease swelling, pain, and morning stiffness associated with osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

6. Dietary supplements

Supplements such as chondroitin and glucosamine, two compounds found in healthy joints, have shown promise in relieving pain and improving mobility. They are taken separately or in combination - either in a pill or as a powder that can be mixed with a liquid. Because these are sold as dietary supplements in your local health food store, they are not monitored or tested for safety and efficacy by the FDA.

7. Herbal therapy

Some herbs that may help to relieve arthritis pain include arnica, feverfew, meadowsweet, and stinging nettles. However, because not all herbal therapies are effective or safe for everyone, you should speak with your doctor.

Tips For People Living With Rheumatoid Arthritis

Living with Rheumatoid Arthritis can be daunting at times especially in the workplace, driving your car, and doing household chores.

In the office there are several things you can do to make life at work more comfortable for you. Following are some suggestions for rearranging your office.

In the office

-Keep all supplies within easy reach
-Have an adjustable chair
-Use a lateral filing cabinet beside your desk to avoid reaching
-Install a glare-proof screen on your computer monitor; causing less eye strain
-Use a footrest to keep feet elevated
-Install wrist rests on your keyboard to make typing easier.

With these things in place your office should be more comfortable for you.

In the car

Driving a car can also present problems for the patient with rheumatoid arthritis. Here are some suggestions that should make driving easier.

-Installing grab bars on the roof to help you get in and out of the car
-Power steering, power seats, power windows all benefit the person with rheumatoid arthritis
-Adjustable head rests, power steering, cruise control and a tilt steering wheel
-Use a wide-angle mirror to avoid straining your neck
-Install lever type handles for opening the car doors
-A key holder will make turning the key easier and prevent pain in the fingers
-When taking a long trip, stop the car and get out to stretch your body from time to time.

In the Kitchen

Preparing meals ahead of time can prevent a lot of pressure at meal time. Of course, that is not always possible, so you should allow yourself plenty of time to prepare a meal.

-Use disposable aluminum pans; or you can use the same pans for cooking and serving to make cleanup easier
-Use foil to line pans for easier cleaning
-Store heavy appliances within easy reach
-A microwave oven, electric can openers, dishwasher, blenders, food processors, all make life easier
-Store most often used dishes on shelves where you won't have to reach
-Sit on a stool while preparing food at the counter, or sit at the table to chop vegetables
-If you have to transport items to another room, use a wheeled cart.

Doing the household chores

Trying to clean the whole house in one day is not a good idea. Make the heavy traffic areas a priority. Designate the heavy chores which need to be done to someone else. Break up the workload; do some vacuuming today, and leave cleaning the bathrooms for tomorrow. Doing only one major task per day is enough. This way you will not be expending all of your energy in one day.

Here are a few helpful tips that you might try when doing your household chores.

-When sorting clean laundry, sit rather than stand
-Purchase a rolling laundry cart on wheels. This is much easier than carrying a full load of laundry
-Separate light and dark loads of laundry into two different baskets
-Store cleaning supplies both upstairs and downstairs for convenience if you live in a two- story house
-When cleaning tiles in the bathroom, use a mildew remover, eliminating the need to scrub
-Use a mop with a long handle to clean the floors. This will save you from bending to get the job done
-Letting your dishes air dry saves time. If you own a dishwasher, this is done for you.

With some of these helpful solutions in place you should find that your environment in your office and home is somewhat improved and is a place where you enjoy spending your time.

Lupus, An Autoimmune Disease With Arthritic Symptoms

Lupus, an autoimmune disease strikes about one in two thousand people. Women are eight to ten times more likely to have lupus than men. Many of its symptoms mimic other diseases so it usually takes more than a year to make a definite diagnosis. Most often women from age twenty to forty are diagnosed with the disease although it can occur in either gender and after age fifty it is equally common to both men and women.

The person with lupus may look perfectly normal to family and friends or even Doctors. The disease can cause nausea, weight loss, and muscle weakness, as well as chronic inflammation in many different parts of the body, including the skin, muscles, and the joints, lymph nodes, and spleen.

The majority of people with lupus usually live full and normal lives. Although lupus is not a true form of arthritis; it is a connective-tissue disease and is classified as a rheumatic disease as the symptoms usually include swelling and joint pain.

Some people with lupus do develop symptoms of arthritis though only a few will suffer the deformities associated with more severe forms of that disease.

To date, there are no known cures for the disease. The causes of lupus are still a mystery; although it is thought that there could be an inherited predisposition to the disease. Some external trigger, perhaps a virus, could be responsible for starting the disease process in genetically predisposed people. Environmental factors, such as an injury, or an infection could contribute to the disease.

The biggest problem comes when trying to diagnose the disease. No two people present the same symptoms. The symptoms can include weight and hair loss, sores in the mouth, and some will get throat and facial swelling.

If the patient has a history of rheumatoid arthritis in their immediate family or a history of some other autoimmune disease, that could be a clue to determining if lupus is actually present. Joint inflammation for instance, would suggest arthritis; but if the inflammation is accompanied with a rash on the body consistent with lupus, the diagnosis is clearer. If there is inflammation around the lungs and the heart, that could be a further clue that lupus could be present.

The range of joints affected in lupus is almost the same ones that are affected in rheumatoid arthritis. While any joint in the body can be affected; it is usually the wrists, the large knuckles at the base of the fingers, and the middle finger joints. Knees fall victim to lupus more often than the hips. As a general rule, lupus patients seldom suffer any joint deformity.

Your diet, exercise and the proper amount of rest all play a significant role in the management of the disease. If you tire easily when going about your daily tasks; stop, take a break and don't overdo it. If you get over tired, that could cause a flare-up. Try to keep your stress levels at a minimum.

Exercise is important to maintain overall body health. It not only gives you more joint flexibility, makes you feel good, look better and live longer.

Last, but not least, your diet is very important, as it is with any arthritic condition. Best thing to do is consult with your Doctor and let him recommend a diet suitable for you.

Seronegative Rheumatoid Arthiritis

What do you mean by seronegative rheumatoid arthritis? It occurs when a patient is declared by the doctor to have this arthritis but in the blood tests, he never tested positive for rheumatoid factor. What is this rheumatoid factor? It is basically an immunoglobulin antibody found in the body comprising around eighty percent of the sufferers of this arthritis. The disease is commonly diagnosed with the use of rheumatoid factor as the tool. However, there are some patients who do not have such rheumatoid factor but still experience the symptoms of the arthritis.

Approximately one to two percent of perfectly healthy people can have this antibody. More cases of this rheumatoid factor involve those adults aging above 65. More of the sufferers of seronegative rheumatoid arthritis are the ones who had the juvenile form of such disease probably acquired during childhood. The longer the time the patient suffers from the disease, the more they become susceptible to rheumatoid factor. Hence, the antibody may not appear to other people. Through a series of medical tests, it has been found out that there is a significant difference between people who have the disease and those who have the antibody. Seronegative arthritis sufferers are less likely to have their joints eroded and damaged. On the other hand, those who test positive for the antibody are more likely to develop nodules under their skin.

Symptoms and progress associated with seronegative arthritis are the same in both groups. Testing positive or negative for the rheumatoid factor does not matter at all when it comes to going through symptoms like swelling, stiffness and damage of joints. Hence, all those symptoms are more intense in patients who test positive. Therefore, if you belong to the negative group, you should be grateful for the fact that you are still able to retain the functions of your joint. To diagnose rheumatoid arthritis, it is important to go through a series of laboratory tests. Based on Arthritis foundation, 70 to 80 percent of patient who have the antibody are likely to have rheumatoid arthritis. When the diagnosis declares that you are positive for the rheumatoid factor and you have rheumatoid arthritis, it means that you are a seropositive rheumatoid arthritis patient or sufferer. On the other hand, if you test negative for the antibody and you have rheumatoid arthritis, it means that you have seronegative rheumatoid arthritis.

Seronegative rheumatoid arthritis badly affects the body of the patient. It makes them always feel weak, fatigued and completely stiff body. The onset of the ailment is typically experienced during rest time or in the morning when the sufferer wakes up after a long sleep. Pain is felt in wrists, ankles and back. The attack can also be characterized by a slightly swollen tissue under the skin. If you suffer from this disease, you need to expect to live a poor quality life. The progress of the disease can hardly be monitored because the antibody is not present in the blood. The treatment of this disease is concentrated on easing the pain, lessening the inflammation and reducing damage to joints. A number of medications available for this ailment include non- steroidal inflammatory drug (NSAIDs), analgesic drugs, disease modifying anti-rheumatic drugs and biologic response modifiers. If all these medications do not work effectively for the patient due to the severity of the condition, the last option for the treatment is a surgery.

Who Else Wants General Information on Arthritis?

Today there are about 70 million Americans with arthritis...that's one person out of every four who suffer both pain and the expense of this crippling disease. In one year alone, arthritis will be responsible for over half a billion dollars in lost wages. The economic consequences of arthritis are important to review because each year, arthritis takes a devastating financial toll on our society.

Over the course of ten years, arthritis related work loss has been associated with a 37% drop in income for arthritics - all those without arthritis had a 90% rise in income over the same period of time!

If you...a friend...or a relative has arthritis, it's important to know that early treatment can help sufferers continue with their normal daily lives and remain productive members of the community.

The term "arthritis" is derived from the Greek: "arthron" meaning "joint" and "itis" meaning inflammation. Arthritis is a word that describes over 100 different conditions, some involving inflammation and others not.

Arthritis is not a single disease. It encompasses about 100 different conditions, that affect joints and that pose unique problems for diagnosis and treatment.

Some common types of arthritis include osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, gout, pseudo-gout, ankylosing spondylitis, polymyalgia rheumatica, psoriatic arthritis, Reiter's disease, systemic lupus erythematosus, and fibromyalgia.

Most types of arthritis involve joint inflammation. Inflammation is the body's natural response to injury or infection.

For an example of inflammation, take a simple scratch...your body automatically releases chemicals that cause fluids to accumulate and white blood cells to gather around the area of the scratch. As your body fights foreign substances and bacteria, inflammation...redness...heat...swelling...and pain occur at the sight of the injury.

In arthritis, unfortunately, this natural defense mechanism goes awry. Elements from the blood designed to fight infection and repair injury attack the body instead.

And, unless this inflammatory process is halted, it will continue to attack the body and cause joint destruction.

So you can begin to see how treatments that just relieve the pain associated with arthritis - but that do not reduce inflammation - may not adequately treat this disease.

Getting proper treatment early on is important...because proper care can help arthritis sufferers lead more active and comfortable lives.

Yet many people with arthritis delay going to a physician. Either they have fear about going to a doctor or they feel that nothing can be done for arthritis. Other reasons include the notion that all arthritis medicines are harmful or arthritis is just a normal part of aging.

Some people try unproven remedies which also delay proper diagnosis and treatment.

Since arthritis may evolve gradually, people often ignore its early warning symptoms or signs. These include persistent pain, tenderness, or swelling in one or more joints...symptoms that should not be dismissed as signs of age.

Other warning symptoms are joint pain and stiffness...especially when they appear in the morning.

Low back pain is one of the earliest symptoms of arthritis. For people over the age of 60, arthritis is the most frequent cause of low back pain.

The activity of arthritis varies unpredictably. Symptoms are cyclic in nature and seem to come and go.

Therefore, it is important to remember that any symptoms or signs of arthritis that last for more than six weeks - no matter how mild - should be checked by a physician. And, if symptoms are severe, then even waiting six weeks might be too long.

The two most common types of arthritis are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Joint inflammation is involved in both.

But, these types of arthritis differ in terms of...age of patients who are affected...the joints involved...the pattern of stiffness...and the potential for disability.

Close to 16 million Americans have osteoarthritis - the most common type of arthritis. Although osteoarthritis can occur at any age, it most often begins in people in their 50's and 60's.

Osteoarthritis or degenerative disc disease is a disorder of cartilage - the gristle that covers the ends of long bones. Cartilage is made of cell called chondrocytes which sit inside a framework made up of collagen and proteoglyens. Under normal conditions, chondrocytes make collagen and proteoglycens - in other works - they make the framework they sit inside. With osteoarthritis, chondrocytes behave abnormally and begin to make destructive enzymes such as collagenasese, stromelysin and others. These enzymes degrade cartilage...these enzymes also attract inflammatory cells which secrete substances called cytokines which cause further inflammation and damage to cartilage, underlying bone, and the joint lining.

This process results in progressive pain, stiffness, and loss of function.

Joint pain and stiffness are the most noticeable symptoms of osteoarthritis. Morning stiffness is usually brief lasting less than 15 minutes. Osteoarthritis usually affects weight bearing areas particularly the neck, low back, hips and knees.

It may also affect the fingers and hands and bony knobs may appear at the finger joints. The base of the thumb may also be affected. The typical pattern of osteoarthritis in the hands involves the distal and proximal interphalangeal (DIP and PIP) joints of the fingers, and the carpometacarpal (CMC) joint of the thumb.

Osteoarthritis is considered to be a degenerative joint disease. Along with inflammation, there is wear and tear on the inside of the joint.

This causes damage to the cartilage (the substance that forms the surface of the joints and works as a shock absorber). As the cartilage wears thin, the underlying bone is damaged. This process results in progressive pain, stiffness, and loss of function.

Osteoarthritis does not need to be disabling and with the proper medical care can be managed easily.

Rheumatoid arthritis is the other most common type of arthritis. It is more common in women and affects 7 million Americans...or one out of every five arthritis patients. It may affect any age group, although onset is most common in middle age.

Rheumatoid arthritis is usually characterized by heat, swelling, and pain in multiple joints in both the right and left sides of the body, including the hands, wrists, elbows, hips, knees, ankles, and feet. Spinal involvement also occurs on occasion.

The typical pattern of rheumatoid arthritis in the hands involves the proximal interphalangeal (PIP) joints, the metacarpal phalangeal (MCP) joints, the wrists, and the elbows.

Unlike osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis can affect the entire body. People with this disease may feel sick all over...tire easily...lose their appetite...and lose weight.

In rheumatoid arthritis, the tissue that surrounds and nourishes the joints is attacked by the body's immune system. The body mistakenly perceives its own tissue as foreign, and it reacts by sending special white blood cells and toxic chemicals called cytokines to destroy the foreign material. (The cytokine abnormalities that cause the damage in rheumatoid arthritis are different from the abnormalities seen in osteoarthritis.) This process of white cell migration and cytokine release damages the joint.

Although we do not know the cause of rheumatoid arthritis, researchers are investigating several possibilities.

Another interesting point about rheumatoid arthritis is that this disease can affect the internal organs including the lungs, skin, blood vessels, spleen, heart, and muscles.

If rheumatoid arthritis is not well controlled it can damage the joints irreversibly and cause serious disability.

To diagnose rheumatoid arthritis, the rheumatologist establishes the presence of joint pain and inflammation lasting at least six weeks and then looks for signs of the course of the disease that are characteristic for rheumatoid arthritis.

There are also blood tests that aid in the diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis.

Patients with rheumatoid arthritis have a series of flare-ups followed by a period where there are mild or no symptoms. Usually, the pain and disability of rheumatoid arthritis progresses gradually.

Morning stiffness generally lasts longer than half an hour and may last several hours depending on the severity of the condition.

Most forms of arthritis persist for the patient's lifetime. Medication cannot usually reverse the bone and soft tissue damage caused by arthritis.

However, new methods of measuring inflammation and its response to medication and other treatments offer valuable information to physicians...and can help to evaluate the arthritis sufferer's discomfort.

Magnetic resonance imaging is one such technique. This method using the effects that strong magnets have on water molecules to provide exquisite images of the interior of the body. MRI has been used to diagnose and also assess the degree of damage within joints of patients suffering from arthritis. It is also helpful for evaluating the effect of new drugs.

Although there is no cure for arthritis, proper treatment can help tremendously. The goal of arthritis treatment is to relieve the pain and stiffness due to the progressive destruction caused by inflammation, and to maintain or increase freedom of movement.

Among the advancements that have taken place in the medical treatment of arthritis are various disease-modifying medications that not only relieve symptoms but also help slow down the progression of disease.

Other advances include various cartilage sparing drugs, cartilage growing drugs, and also biologic remedies. These drugs act by blocking the destructive effects of enzymes such as metalloproteases in osteoarthritis and cytokines in rheumatoid arthritis. By targeting specific processes, relief of symptoms and healing of damage can take place with presumably fewer side effects.

What can you do if you think you have arthritis?

First, you can consult your doctor. This is important because medical issues are complicated and your doctor, who understands your health needs, can prescribe the best treatment for you.

The type of doctor who can best evaluate arthritis is called a rheumatologist. These are physicians who have completed four years of medical school, three years of internal medicine residency, and three years of rheumatology fellowship.

While arthritis can be a serious disease that can progress and cause disability, science has come up with some new answers for arthritis sufferers. It is now up to the arthritis sufferer to recognize early warning signs and symptoms and to see a rheumatologist. With proper medical care, the course of this crippling disease may change and people can help to be returned to fully active lives - without pain and crippling disability.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Arthritis Treatment: A Primer on Rheumatoid Arthritis Treatments

Of the inflammatory forms of arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is the most common. It affects about 2 million Americans, about 60% of whom are women. It is no respecter of age since it can occur in children as well as in adults.

RA is a chronic autoimmune disorder characterized by chronic inflammation in the joints which causes pain, swelling, and stiffness. What is not generally appreciated is that it affects not only joints but internal organs as well.

RA can cause permanent joint damage leading to deformities and loss of joint movement. As a result, many people with RA experience limitations on their ability to perform daily activities which has a major impact on quality of life.

Data has indicated that early aggressive treatment of RA can limit joint damage. RA is a major contributor to morbidity and mortality. Mortality rates among people with RA are twice that of the general population and disease severity is an independent risk factor of mortality regardless of comorbid conditions.

People with RA are twice as likely to develop congestive heart failure is compared to those without RA.

RA is the most common cause of disability in the United States and the third leading cause of work limitations. Medical and indirect costs due to lost wages are estimated at $3 billion annually and fewer than 50% of working age adults with RA are still employed 10 years after onset of the disease.

The cause of RA is unknown, but multiple genetic and environmental factors (infectious agents, reproductive status, and smoking) are thought to be involved. What is also known is that the immune system plays an important role.

When it comes to treatment, the primary goals are to relieve pain, swelling, and fatigue; improve joint function; slow down or stop joint damage; and prevent disability and disease-related morbidity. RA is a complex disease. There are many cells, molecules, and processes involved in the genesis of RA.

CD4+ T cells mediate joint damage both directly and indirectly by driving non-T effector cells to release inflammatory cytokines. Also, B cells play a role in RA pathology by producing autoantibodies and triggering cytokine secretion by T cells as well as by acting as antigen-presenting cells (APCs) to trigger T-cell activation. This entire machinery is driven by multiple cytokines.

In the past the traditional treatment pyramid for rheumatoid arthritis was to start with anti-inflammatory drugs, move onto mild disease-modifying drugs (DMARDS), step up to more aggressive disease-modifying drugs if they didn't work, and finally use powerful immunosuppressive drugs as a last resort. The treatment approach now is to stand the pyramid on its head and use more aggressive therapies in concert with methotrexate to effect remission as soon as possible.

A newer approach is to "treat to target." This means that a specific goal of remission is aimed for and adjustments in medications are made regularly in order to achieve it.

Anti-inflammatory drugs- either non-steroidal drugs or low dose corticosteroids are an adjunctive therapy but are not considered as important as remission-inducing drugs. These drugs are initiated at the start of treatment to give the patient some relief. Full therapeutic doses of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) or prednisone in doses ranging from 5-10mgs/day are helpful for symptoms. Side effects related to an increase in cardiovascular events as well as gastrointestinal issues must be balanced against benefit.

Remission-inducing agents (DMARDS) are started at the same time or shortly thereafter. Besides methotrexate, other DMARD drugs include hydroxychloroquine (Plaquenil), azathioprine (Imuran), sulfasalazine (Azulfidine), cyclosporine (Sandimmune), and leflunomide (Arava).

By far, the most commonly used DMARD is methotrexate.

Treatment options including biologic response modifiers, disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs, and combinations of disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs have been used as our knowledge of the different pathways involved in the RA process has deepened.

Therapeutic agents including TNF antagonists and IL-6 inhibitors were developed to block cytokine-mediated processes. Other anti-cytokine drugs are also being developed to target specific "bad guys."

Co-stimulatory pathway T-cell drugs were developed to inhibit T-cell mediated processes. Elucidation of the role of B cells in the inflammation cascade has provided the rationale for the institution of B-cell targeted therapies.

Biologic drugs have revolutionized the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and have permitted rheumatologists to achieve remission in many patients with RA.

Examples of biologics include the following: TNF inhibitors consist of Enbrel, Humira, Remicade, Cimzia, and Simponi. Anti-interleukin 6 drugs are represented by Actemra. The primary T-cell drug is Orencia and the B-cell drug is Rituxan. Many other drugs are in the pipeline.

In addition to the existing biologics, new oral kinase inhibitors (JAK and SYK) are exciting new drugs.

While complementary therapies such as dietary fish oil, flax seed, etc. may help, they are usually not effective by themselves. The role of diet also is not well understood.

Objective measurement of remission include reduction in joint swelling and pain scores, improvement in health assessment and activities of daily living, reduction in blood measures of inflammation, and cessation of disease activity by magnetic resonance imaging.

Newer measurement criteria that will ensure uniformity of definition of remission are also being created.

What Therapeutic Treatments Help Neuropathy

Neuropathy is a general term denoting disturbances in the normal functioning of the peripheral nerves. The causes of neuropathy are varied and so is the treatment. Many a times, the neuropathy is almost irreversible and the treatment is mainly focused on preventing further progression of the nerve damage and other supportive measures to prevent any complications due to neuropathy.

Neuropathies due to nutritional deficiencies are mainly treated with the replenishment of the deficient nutrient. Neuropathies due to deficiency of vitamins like cobalamin, thiamine, pyridoxine, niacin are treated by giving the vitamin supplementation orally or by intramuscular injection of the vitamin if deficiency is due to defective absorption of vitamins from the diet. Treatment may or may not completely reverse the neuropathy and alleviate the symptoms and in many cases there is some permanent damage to nerves and persistent symptoms despite therapy. Recently neuropathy due to copper deficiency has also been discovered. It too is treated with oral copper salts or intravenous injection of copper salts. Again the response is variable and may take many months.

Entrapment neuropathies like carpal tunnel syndrome, radial neuropathy, meralgia paraesthetica, etc are treated based on specific cause and the nerve involved. Carpal tunnel syndrome treatment varies from medical approaches like NSAID (like Ibuprofen), local injection of steroids in wrist, and avoiding aggravating factors like typing in wrong positions, use of hand tools etc. If symptoms not alleviated by this approach, then surgery is also an option and is most often curative if no permanent damage to nerve has already occurred. Again, each neuropathy is unique and treatment is variable.

The treatment of neuropathies secondary to other diseases is the treatment of the primary disease causing the neuropathy. If neuropathy is due to Myxedema, caused by lack of thyroid hormone, then treatment is replacing the thyroid hormone. Treatment of Diabetic Neuropathy is mainly supportive. In diabetic neuropathies, some forms like Mononeuropathies are reversible but most are irreversible. Strict control of blood glucose levels to slow the further progression is of paramount importance. Other treatment is based on the symptoms, like pain is managed with NSAID and many other drugs. Similarly the neuropathy associated with Rheumatoid Arthritis often responds to the treatment of Rheumatoid arthritis (with immunomodulators).

Treatment of neuropathy due to food allergy is avoiding the allergen food item causing neuropathy. Neuropathy may also be due to toxic effect of certain drugs like Chloroquine, Phenytoin, anti-Cancer drugs and numerous others. Treatment in this case is mainly discontinuation of the drug or dose reduction. There may be some specific treatment in certain cases, like neuropathy due to isoniazid can usually be prevented by giving pyridoxine along with it.

Rheumatoid Arthritis - Its Signs, Symptoms and Pathophysiology

Rheumatoid arthritis presents with signs and symptoms that are distinguishable from other forms of arthritis. The classical signs it presents make its diagnosis easier and also enables the medical personnel to prescribe the right drugs for its treatment.

The signs and symptoms of this disease therefore include the following:

1. The onset is gradual
2. Stiffness of joints
3. Transient muscular pain
4. Numbness and coldness of extremities
5. Redness, soreness and swelling of some joints
6. Malaise and fatigue
7. Weight loss
8. Subcutaneous nodules over bony prominences
9. Joints of the fingers and toes are first affected. Joints of the elbow, wrist and shoulder later become affected
10. Fingers may become spindle shape with patient unable to make a firm grip
11. Muscular atrophy as a result of lack of use of the muscles
12. Anaemia (aplastic anaemia)
13. Patient appears undernourished and chronically ill
14. There are periods of remissions and relapses

Pathophysiology of Rheumatoid arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis passes through four stages. The first noticeable stage is the inflammation of the synovial membrane (synovitis), causing congestion and oedema.

The next stage is the formation of pannus. A layer of inflammatory tissue forms in the joint capsule. Fibroblasts, leucocytes, lymphocytes, plasma cells and other materials multiply from the synovial membrane leading to a pannus tissue which invades the cartilage and slowly replace it with tough fibrous tissue.

The disease progresses to the next stage otherwise known as fibrous ankylosis. This involves the conversion of the articular cartilage of the joint into fibrous tissue thereby inhibiting motion of the joint. The final stage is the bony ankylosis. In this stage, the bones of the joint fuse together thereby making mobility impossible.

Natural Cures For Rheumatoid Arthritis That You Can Try Easily

Rheumatoid arthritis is something that causes severe pain and swelling causing the joints to feel extremely tender and painful. There are various medications a doctor can give you to help relieve the pain and to bring down the swelling. The most common type of drug for rheumatoid arthritis are anti inflammatory drugs. Although these drugs can be effective in the general treatment of this painful condition, there are also some very effective, safe natural cures for rheumatoid arthritis. Here are a few of those natural remedies that anyone suffering with this condition should consider trying.

Cod Liver Oil

Taking one or two spoonfuls of cod liver oil can greatly relieve the pain of rheumatoid arthritis, due to the fact that one of the single most painful factors when it comes to this condition, is cartilage damage. Cod liver oil actually slows down the process of cartilage damage and helps lubricate the joints. Therefore helping the sufferer to feel less pain than they normally would.


Cinnamon has got many healing properties, if you have never tried it as a natural remedy then now would be the time to start. In terms of natural cures for arthritis this is a very well known and somewhat effective one. Take one teaspoon in the morning and one teaspoon at night. Once you get into the routine of doing this, within 2 or 3 weeks you should see some good results from this. Overall you will feel healthier, more energetic and the pain will not be so intense.

Epsom Salt

Epsom salt is used a lot in the treatment of any kind of muscle or joint pain, it is known to be a natural pain soother, and has been used for generations to relieve pain. The minerals in Epsom salt can help to renew the bones as well as strengthen them. Therefore soaking in a warm bath of Epsom salt every night before you go to bed could have a great effect on your overall feeling of well being. As well as relieving the crippling pain of rheumatoid arthritis

Drink Plenty of Water

Drinking plenty of water is vital in the process of cell renewal, as well as in the process of bone renewal. If you drink enough water to keep your body fully hydrated, this well help greatly in making your body work more efficiently and effectively. Therefore it gives some relief to rheumatoid arthritis sufferers.

Lemon and Lime juice

Drinking lemon and lime juice in hot water has been known to help relieve or even cure rheumatoid arthritis. There are so many natural cures for rheumatoid arthritis and lemon and lime juice have been amongst the most talked about cures. As they have some powerful antioxidant properties, which apparently help with pain relief.

When it comes to natural cures for rheumatoid arthritis, although there are a few to choose from, it is best to find and use a couple of them at first and see what works for you. Not everyone is the same and what work for someone else may not work for you.

Six Ways to Fix Chronic Pain Symptoms

How to get relief from back pain symptoms with a combination of therapy, diet and back pain exercises. Here are six handy tips to remember for the chronic backache patient.

Different Backaches Call For Different Measures

Back pain can arise from a variety of causes. If you have chronic pain symptoms that keep recurring, you need to do more than just concentrate on pain relief. Acute backache can be caused by sudden injury from lifting heavy objects, prolonged period of sitting in a particular position or even from a marathon tennis session. In such cases, some painkillers and an ice pack may just do the trick. But, if your pain is not relieved by medication and keeps coming back, you should consult a doctor or a chiropractor.

The Importance Of Early Diagnosis For Chronic Pain

Chronic back pain can be a debilitating condition. If left untreated, it can become a major health problem that will prevent you from enjoying a normal life. Taking care of a bad back can become a lifelong burden if you do not take care at an early stage. Correct and timely diagnosis is very important. Especially in case of chronic back pain, detailed tests may have to be conducted to rule out underlying problems like a herniated disc or spondylysis. In extreme cases, surgery may be considered. However, most forms of back pain can be alleviated with a combination of diet, exercise and various kinds of pain-relief therapy.

Six Tips To Help You Heal A Bad Back

Here are some ways to alleviate chronic pain symptoms:

1. Make exercise a part of your daily regimen. There are specific exercises for the back that can strengthen back muscles and prevent further pain and injury.
2. Take care of your diet. Putting on weight, especially around the middle, takes its toll on the back. Staying trim will not only make you feel healthier, it is better for your back too.
3. Alternative therapy like acupuncture and magnetic therapy can go a long way in providing you relief from backpain. Try them out to see if they work for you.
4. Join yoga classes and learn different back strengthening postures and meditation techniques. Besides making you more flexible, yoga also has back-specific postures to relieve backache. Related breathing and meditation skills can help reduce stress, which is usually linked to back ache.
5. Bad posture not only causes but also aggravates backache. Learn to sit and stand properly without slouching.
6. Make sure your workspace is back-friendly. The work surface should be at a comfortable height and the chair should have good lumbar support.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Controlling Arthritis Symptoms With Chiropractic Care

Not too long ago, arthritis was deemed to be just another facet of the aging process - something someone would have to suffer through. Once arthritis reared its rickety head, patients were advised to slow down, rest and take drugs to alleviate the symptoms. Thankfully, this is no longer the case. Recent findings have added a wealth of new evidence to question the treatment of arthritis.

Arthritis is defined as an inflammation of the joints, and is commonly used to refer to rheumatic diseases. Diseases of a rheumatic nature consist of more than 100 conditions. Among them are psoriasis arthritis, osteoarthritis, and gout. One of these conditions is rheumatoid arthritis, which affects about 2 million people in the US. Even though rheumatoid arthritis typically starts either in one's middle age or, more frequently, in one's later years, some patients experience symptoms much earlier.

Those afflicted with rheumatoid arthritis experience joint swelling, pain, stiffness, and, in more severe cases, loss of function. The following symptoms categorize rheumatoid arthritis:
Joints that is swollen, warm, and tender
Prolonged joint stiffness and pain that lasts more than 30 minutes
A general sense of illness, tiredness, or fever
Symmetrical symptoms; both joints are affected (both wrists, for example)
Most often the wrist and finger joints that are closest to the hand are affected as well as the shoulder, hip, knee, elbow, ankle, neck, and feet
Symptoms can progressively spread to other parts of the body, not just the joints, and can last for years

The way in which rheumatoid arthritis manifests itself is highly individualized. There are those patients who experience only mild symptoms for a few months or a number of years, and then see their symptoms disappear. Others have moderate symptoms with occasional flares (when the symptoms worsen), and periods where the symptoms also either gets milder or disappears for a time. Those patients who have severe forms of rheumatoid arthritis, on the other hand, experience constant pain. Their pain persists for years, and may lead to serious joint damage and/or disability.

Arthritis and Exercise
In order to ameliorate symptoms, arthritis patients can greatly benefit from regular exercise. In fact, exercise is considered key to arthritis management. Exercise promotes the maintenance of healthy, strong muscles, flexibility, endurance, and joint mobility. However, rest helps to lessen active joint inflammation, fatigue, and pain.

To achieve optimum results, one needs to strike a balance between the rest and exercise - resting more during active phases of arthritis and exercising more during the times when symptoms decrease. In those times when symptoms systematically or locally flare up, patients can gently exercise their joints. A health care provider should be consulted in order to determine how much rest is best during these periods.

Exercises known as "range of motion," such as dance, stretching, and tai chi, help maintain regular joint movement and stimulates overall joint flexibility. They can be done on a daily basis, or at least three or four times a week. Strengthening exercises such as mild weight lifting helps increase muscle strength, which plays a role in supporting and protecting affected joints. Unless the pain and swelling is severe, these exercises should be done three or four times a week. Other aerobic exercises, such as walking and swimming, aids the cardiovascular system, muscle tone, and weight control. Swimming, in particular, provides a low risk of stress injuries and has little impact on the body, making it an ideal option for many patients. Swimming can be practiced for 20 or 30 minutes every other day if the symptoms are not aggravated.

The Role of a Chiropractor in Managing Arthritis
Your chiropractic doctor can help your body move with more ease and comfort. The need for pain medications is reduced once the body is aligned and can move more freely. Chiropractic care can significantly help avoid arthritis' more damaging effects. Chiropractic care addresses lifestyle, diet, exercise, and other factors that influence a person's health as a whole. A healthy weight and immune system are also relevant factors in preventing the more harmful effects of rheumatoid arthritis.

Chiropractic care focuses on physical manipulation and alignment, so that joints can benefit from adjustments aimed at reducing pain and stiffness. Many additional approaches of chiropractic care address the needs of arthritic patients. The incorporation of massage in chiropractic care can play a role in reducing stiffness, helping the arthritic patient move more freely. Heat and cold compresses helps relieve arthritic pain. In addition, electrical stimulation is linked with encouraging the release of endorphins, also countering pain receptors. Chiropractic care offers a non-invasive, holistic way to promote overall health and manage conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, reducing the reliance on strong medications.

As well as addressing joint inflammation through physical manipulation, chiropractic care can tailor the right exercise program, and offer comprehensive nutrition and supplement advice for your needs.

Reduce Arthritis Pain With Super Foods

Arthritis affects about one in every five people in the United States according to the National Institutes of Health, That's a lot of people... and as the population ages it will be even more people.

Actually, Arthritis is not one single disease but a category that includes many conditions and disorders that involve your joints. Osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis are the most common of these diseases.

Most of us don't realize how much good nutrition may improve the way we feel. Many doctors don't support nutrition as part of the treatment for arthritis because they feel the clinical evidence is not strong enough for them to suggest it to patients. Even so there are a few studies that show there are foods that can irritate arthritis (saturated fat, trans fat) and make it worse and there are some foods that can help ease the pain.

Here are a few of the foods that can improve the way you feel with arthritis:

Foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids

Omega-3s help decrease inflammation by suppressing the production of cytokines (Cytokines are small secreted proteins which help regulate immunity and inflammation.) and other enzymes that erode cartilage. Several studies report that omega-3 fish oils can reduce the painful symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis. There is not much evidence whether fish oil can affect osteoarthritis, but most physicians recommend a omega-3 rich diet because it has such positive effects. Foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids are salmon, herring, sardines, flaxseed, trout and walnuts.

Foods that contain extra-virgin olive oil and canola oil

Cooking with olive oil instead of vegetable oil or butter is good for you because olive oil is the good, monounsaturated fat. It protects your body against inflammation because it contains antioxidants called polyphenols ( Polyphenols act as antioxidants. They protect cells and body chemicals against damage caused by free radicals and reactive atoms that contribute to tissue damage in the body.) Be careful, however, not to pour it on. It is an oil and has calories.

Antioxidants - vitamin C, selenium, carotenes, bioflavonoid

Free radicals develop from inflammation in response to your body's natural processes. Antioxidants protect the body from the effects of free radicals and are an important part of an anti-inflammation diet. Some of the important free radicals are:

Vitamin C:

Vitamin C is important for the production of collagen which is a major component of cartilage. People who eat a low vitamin C diet are at a higher risk of developing arthritis. On the other hand, long-term high-dose vitamin C supplements may make osteoarthritis worse. That's one of the reasons why many doctors recommend that their patients get their vitamin C from food sources rather than from supplements. Foods which are a good source of vitamin C include: guava, sweet peppers, organs, grapefruits, broccoli, kale, kiwi, brussel sprouts and mustard greens.


Patients with low levels of selenium are more at risk for severe arthritis
compared with those who ate a selenium-rich diet. Good foods containing selenium are: tuna, crab, lean beef, shrimp, whole grains, turkey and wheat germ.


Many fruits and vegetables contain carotenoids, a group of powerful antioxidants. Carotene is the best known among them . Some of the best foods for beta carotene include: sweet potato, carrots, kale, spinach, sweet red pepper, apricots and cantaloupe. Research in the U.K. found that people who ate diets high in carotenes were half as likely to develop inflammatory arthritis.

Bioflavonoids - quercetin and anthocyanidins:

These are both antioxidants. The anti-inflammatory effects of quercetin are similar to medications such as aspirin and ibuprofen. Good sources for quercetin are: onions, leeks, cherry tomatoes, broccoli, and apricots, The anti-inflammatory anthocyanidins seem to inhibit the production of certain inflammatory chemicals. Good food sources for this antioxidant are blueberries, eggplant, cherries, strawberries and plums.

Spices - ginger and turmeric

Spices, like salt, are a part of nutrition. They are derived from plant sources and they can have positive effects on your health. Some spices, like ginger and turmeric, have anti-inflammatory effects and can reduce arthritic discomfort. However, ginger can also act as a blood thinner so those taking a blood-thinning medication should discuss adding ginger to their diet with their physician before they do anything.

To incorporate more ginger into your diet, grate fresh ginger into stir fries, or enjoy ginger tea and low-fat ginger muffins.

Always eliminate the possibility of a food allergy if you're trying something new. To reduce your pain from arthritis, avoid meet, eat lots of foods with fish oils and include ginger in your diet.

There are dozens of foods that can ease the symptoms of arthritis and probably help prevent it in the first place. Hopefully, these suggestions will give you some relief.

Hip Resurfacing - An Alternative to Total Hip Replacement

Total hip replacement is a very successful operation for hip arthritis. The purpose is to remove the two damaged and worn parts of the hip joint- the "ball and socket" and replace them with smooth artificial implants.

However for younger patients, there is a high chance that a traditional hip replacement will wear out during their lifetime and need to be replaced. A second replacement is more difficult and tends not to last as long. in addition high impact activities are not generally recommended after total hip replacement.

Hip resurfacing is a procedure which replaces the two surfaces of the hip joint. This conserves bone as the femoral head is retained. Instead of removing the femoral head, it is reshaped to accept an anatomically shaped metal sphere. This results in lower risk of dislocation compared to traditional total hip replacement and the potential for higher activity level.

Who is a candidate for resurfacing?

Generally people who require a hip replacement under age 55 yrs are candidates unless they have certain types of arthritis which has deformed the femoral head. Hip resurfacing is rarely considered for people over the age of 65yrs.

Results of Hip Resurfacing

Long term results are not known as this procedure has only been in clinical use for just over 10 years- however the results to date have been very good with success rate better than conventional total hip replacement over the first 5-10years.

4 common conditions that may indicate the need for hip resurfacing:


This is a disease which wears away the cartilage between the femoral head and the acetabulum ( the ball and socket) causing the 2 bones to scrape against each other. This results in pain, stiffness and instability. Some patients even develop bone spurs.

Symptoms include pain in the hip or groin area during weight bearing resulting in limping. As it worsens the pain may be present all the time even at night.

Rheumatoid arthritis

RA is a chronic inflammatory disease that results in pain, stiffness and swelling. It is commonly thought to be an autoimmune disease perhaps triggered by virus or bacteria in those with a genetic predisposition.

Developmental Dysplasia

One in 10,000 people are born with this altered hip anatomy leading to early wear and tear. There is often a family history.

Avascular necrosis

This occurs when poor blood circulation starve the bones that form the hip joint. Over time the starved bone dies and the hip collapses.

Alcoholism and corticosteroids are by far the leading causes of this.

Post op recovery

Most patients walk the day after surgery usually with crutches or walking sticks. You will then commence an intensive physiotherapy programme. This is critical to strengthen the muscles around the hip correctly to protect the new hip and give it the best chance of lasting as long as possible. Also many patients had months of pain and were limping before the operation so the hip muscles were often very weak prior to the operation.

Your surgeon will tell you how much weight you are allowed to take initially. For many patients full weight bearing is allowed within the first week and normal walking is usually achieved by 4-6 weeks.

During the first 6 months post op impact activities should be avoided as the bone initially remodels to "grip" the new implant.

In the weeks after surgery it is important to gradually build up your activity under the guidance of a physiotherapist to strengthen the hip muscles and ensure normal walking gait.

It is normal to feel more tired than normal after surgery so allow yourself enough rest during your recovery period.

Further precautions:

* No heavy lifting

* Do not twist while lying or standing

* Avoid extreme movements of the new hip

* Do not cross your legs

* Do not lift your knee higher than your hip on the operated side

How to Understand Rheumatoid Arthritis & Osteoarthritis - Chronic Pain and Treatment Strategies

The previous two articles in this series analyzed and discussed rheumatoid arthritis (RA) in some detail. The link between chronic pain and RA was analyzed and the progression of the RA chronic pain complex was revealed. Particular attention was paid to small joint pain, usually involving the neck, hands, and feet in the early stages of the disorder, then spreading as the disease takes hold and progresses. The progression of chronic, often acute pain affecting the larger joints, to include the upper, middle, and lower back, hip and knee pain, and even leg pain, usually expressed as sciatica, was discussed. As discussed in "Understanding Rheumatoid Arthritis - Dealing With Chronic Pain Associated With RA Part I & II," RA is a chronic and systemic disorder, widespread throughout the body, and without cure. In this article we will discuss the differences between rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and an often misdiagnosed, misunderstood "cousin," osteoarthritis (OA). We will discuss diagnostic features distinguishing the two disorders, the symptoms of RA versus OA, and some treatment variations and similarities. The very different outcomes, or prognoses, as well as certain strategies for confronting the two conditions head on will also be explored. Finally, strategies for alleviating, and in some cases eliminating, the chronic pain associated with rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis will be offered. Chronic pain treatment strategies, to include treatment for neck pain, back pain, hip and knee pain, and sciatica, will be compared and analyzed.

As noted above, rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic, systemic disorder. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease occurring when the individual's immune system doesn't work properly or malfunctions. Rheumatoid arthritis causes chronic, often acute pain, stiffness and swelling, and progresses from small joint involvement, to large joint involvement, and ultimately to multiple organ consequences. Chronic pain associated with RA is usually the result of an inflammation of the synovial membrane, synovitis. The inflammation of the synovial membrane leads to friction, the friction leads to joint degeneration, which leads to more inflammation, which leads to more friction and joint degeneration. As the disease progresses, and begins to affect other organ systems, the result is usually total disability. The exact cause of rheumatoid arthritis has not been established. Many experts believe that RA may be the result of genetics, environment, and/or a number of other factors to include hormones and the body's reaction or response to stress. Onset of RA typically occurs in women between the ages of 30 and 50 years of age. However, rheumatoid arthritis has been known to strike the very young, men, and certain ethnic groups, to include a disproportionately high number of Native Americans. RA is also seen in higher numbers among smokers. Rheumatoid arthritis is generally not attributed to such things as aging, trauma and injury or obesity. Beginning with small joint pain and stiffness, the disorder culminates in deformity and chronic, often acute, back pain, hip and knee pain, and sciatica.

Osteoarthritis (OA) is generally considered an age-progressive phenomenon. Sometimes called the "wear and tear" disorder, OA may also be attributed to injury, trauma, stress, and/or obesity. Osteoarthritis typically expresses with joint pain, stiffness, and loss of function and did decrease in the range of motion. Unlike rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis generally affects weight bearing joints, particularly the spine, the pelvis or hips, and the knees. Chronic back pain, particularly of the lower back, and leg pain (sciatica) are quite common. However, OA may also be present in the neck, the hands, particularly the finger joints, and even the big toe. Osteoarthritis generally worsens later in the day or after considerable activity. Alternately, rheumatoid arthritis is generally known for morning stiffness or stiffness occurring as the result of a lack of activity or after periods of prolonged inactivity.

Significantly, while as many as 1.5 million individuals in the United States have been diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, over 20 million people have been diagnosed with osteoarthritis. While diagnosis for osteoarthritis is usually established with the use of x-rays, in some cases CAT scans, rheumatoid arthritis usually takes a more comprehensive battery of diagnostic tests to properly diagnose. RA sufferers may require extensive blood tests, x-rays, CAT scans, and in some cases even an MRI to properly diagnose the disorder. The very different symptoms of the two disorders, one systemic and the other a "wear and tear" disorder, are evident in the laboratory and radiographically (x-rays).

Treatment strategies for RA and OA are often remarkably similar. Although RA requires pharmacological intervention, generally in the form of disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs or DMARDs, to reduce stiffness and chronic pain, as well to inhibit joint damage, this should not be the only treatment strategy employed. DMARDs often take weeks, even months to build up in the bloodstream and fully take effect, so NSAIDs are often used synergistically, and as a stop-gap until DMARDs are effective. Osteoarthritis, on the other hand, may also be treated by NSAIDs. However, ibuprofen and acetaminophen are routinely prescribed for pain associated with osteoarthritis.

In addition to medication, both rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis are responsive to physical therapy and ice to reduce inflammation and swelling. Individuals suffering from RA or OA typically respond well to exercise. Exercise is particularly effective for RA sufferers in order to offset periods of inactivity and the stiffness associated with a sedentary lifestyle or simply the stiffness related to characteristic morning stiffness. Osteoarthritis, on the other hand, responds well to exercise for different reasons. Individuals affected by OA, a typically age-progressive, trauma, and stress related phenomenon, respond quite well to strengthening of the musculoskeletal system, particularly the core muscles responsible for posture and overall strength. As muscles atrophy, deterioration of the bones, particularly the vertebrae and weight-bearing joints, is quite common, leading to "wear and tear" and an exacerbation of the overall condition and subsequent degeneration. The degeneration leads to a constellation of chronic pain symptoms, to include neck pain, back pain, and sciatica.

Ultimately, while etiology or cause of rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis are quite different, symptoms, such as swelling, inflammation, stiffness, and chronic pain are characteristic of both conditions. Individuals suffering from RA and OA are affected by a progressive disorder, both leading to total disability if not properly treated. Individuals diagnosed with osteoarthritis, because of the very nature of the disorder, have a much better chance of alleviating and even eliminating the long-term effects. RA is, by its very nature, more problematic. That being said, individuals suffering from rheumatoid arthritis may take control of the outcome, their prognosis, by engaging in an aggressive, holistic treatment strategy, one typically designed to treat the symptoms, since etiology is still unclear. In both instances, medication, ice for inflammation, swelling, and to reduce pain, and a medically approved, individualized program of stretching and exercise should be commenced as soon as possible. Chronic pain associated with both conditions should be taken as a warning to do something, rather than to do nothing. To do nothing will exacerbate either condition, leading to further degeneration and the progression of both disorders and their symptoms, to include chronic pain in the form of joint pain, neck pain, back pain, and/or sciatica.

Thyroid - The Difference Between an Overactive and Underactive Thyroid

The thyroid gland is a butterfly shaped gland that is situated in the neck, right below the Adam's apple. It is responsible for regulating the body's metabolic processes. Thyroid hormones help regulate how tissues in our bodies function. Abnormally high or low thyroid hormone levels can manifest in different ways. Problems can arise from an overactive thyroid or and underactive thyroid.

Overactive thyroid also known as hyperthyroidism is most common in women ages 20-40. Some people think thyroid problems only affect women. But in truth they can affect both sexes. Symptoms of overactive thyroid will be similar in most of the people who suspect that may have this thyroid condition.

Symptoms include: weakness and fatigue, infertility, increased perspiration, changes to menstrual cycles, eye irritation, anxiety, frequent and looser bowel movements, sensitivity to heat, shaky hands, weight loss, increased heart rate, to name a few.

Underactive thyroid or hypothyroidism is often referred to as low thyroid. This thyroid condition produces another set of symptoms. Symptoms of low thyroid are a result of a declining hormone levels. The symptoms of an underactive thyroid are: sluggishness and fatigue, weight gain, dry hair and skin, brittle nails, menstrual irregularities, sensitivity to cold, constipation, depression or irritability, headaches, muscle and joint pain, among other things.

Those who have family members with thyroid issues are more at risk genetically. If you know that your family has a history of thyroid problems it is very important to watch for these symptoms. One or more of these symptoms may indicate a thyroid problem. If you suspect some of your symptoms might be attributed to thyroid dysfunction it would be advisable to seek help. Figuring out your thyroid function is something best left for people who specialize in providing thyroid support.

It's easy to see that experiencing any of these symptoms can be frustrating. These symptoms can be dealt with on a daily basis. Because they cause irritation but are not necessarily disabling, patients might feel as if they can just "live with them". It's important to remember that ignoring these symptoms, whether from overactive to underactive thyroid, might have long-term consequences.

If these symptoms are ignored your condition may worsen. Problems can steamroll into bigger problems such as rheumatoid arthritis, anemia or neurological disorders. If you continue to suffer from symptoms of thyroid problems for weeks, months or even years your condition may become more complicated. It is never a good idea to risk one's health. In this case procrastinating would not be in your best interest. You don't have to find the answers on your own. You can learn more simply by seeking help from someone well versed in thyroid function.

Any person is suffering from any of these thyroid symptoms should know that there is hope. By finding an expert in thyroid support a patient can well be on their way to finding answers to their thyroid questions. Finding direction and assistance in unlocking some of the mysteries surrounding your symptoms may help set you on the road to a happier healthier you.

The Importance of Disease Diagnosis

The etiological concept of diseases and the methodology of treatment varies among the different systems of medicine. However, the mode of disease diagnosis (Nosological diagnosis) is common for all systems. It is a fact that the close association between disease diagnosis and remedial diagnosis prevailed in Modern medicine may not be seen in other holistic systems, however, diagnosis is having its own importance even in other systems. The mode of treatment may be either holistic treatment, specific treatment, symptomatic treatment and general life support to the patient. Modern medicine gives more importance to the specific treatment, whereas, systems like Ayurveda, Homoeopathy, Siddha, Unani, Chinese medicine, Naturopathy etc. give more importance to the holistic concept of treatment, i. e. remedy section by considering the physical, mental and emotional characters and life situation of the sick individual.

However, in these systems also, disease diagnosis is equally important, because, under certain situations, the functioning of the affected organ or the system of the body has to be backed up. The patient also may require some specific type of support, for which the organ remedies are to be deployed. Apart from that, disease diagnosis is important for planning the disease control measures, prognosis, special precautions, to know the life threatening situations, prevention of spreading of disease to others. Diagnosis is very essential for statistics, research and also to fulfill the academic interests. Above all, due to some medico-legal reasons, the doctor should know the detailed health status of his patient. Due to all these reasons, disease diagnosis is a must, irrespective of the system of treatment given to the patient.

Disease diagnosis and remedial diagnosis can be considered as the two sides of the same coin, hence, both are having equal importance. Disease diagnosis is done by correlating the signs and symptoms of the patients (clinical features) with the information given by the bystanders and the lab investigation reports. On certain situations, there may be some difficulty in making a diagnosis, because, a number of diseases are having almost similar clinical features. Moreover, rarely occurring diseases or a newly emerged disease may not be identified easily, especially by a general practitioner. Under such circumstances, a specialist's opinion may be needed. Very rarely, a team of doctors are involved in the process of diagnosis.

It is not possible to name each and every disease we come across in our day to day practice. As per the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-10), a notable percentage of diseases can't be named. In such cases, a diagnosis is possible in spite of having several health related symptoms in the patient. Since the patient is suffering, he has to be treated symptomatically. Some symptoms or conditions are wrongly understood as diseases by the laymen. For example, clinical manifestations like jaundice, fever, vomiting, headache, malaise etc are not diseases; but clinical manifestations of some diseases. The naming of diseases is done on several basis. Most of the diseases are named after the person who invented that particular disease (Buerger's disease, Alzheimer's disease, Weil's disease), some diseases on the basis of area where the disease is common or identified for the first time (African sleeping sickness, Madhura foot, Japanese encephalitis), on the basis of some peculiarity of the symptoms (Chikungunya), or on the basis of the organism responsible for the infection (Falsiparum malaria, Amoebic dysentery, Bacillary dysentery), or on the basis of the affected organ (Myocarditis, Nephritis, Appendicitis), on the basis of cause(Alcoholic hepatitis, Wool-sorter's disease), on the basis of age (Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, Senile dementia), on the basis of pathology(Mixed connective tissue disease, Mucopolyscaccharidosis)etc.

If a group of specific signs and symptoms are found in an individual, it is called syndrome (Edward syndrome, Down syndrome, Laurence-moon syndrome). Nowadays, we hardly come across a patient having a single disease, whereas most of patients are having a list of diseases such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, idiopathic hypertension, acid peptic disease, senile dementia, degenerative joint disease etc. Many diseases are classified under certain group of disorders. For example: Degenerative joint disorders, Inflammatory bowel disorders, Psychosomatic diseases, Life style disorders etc. Here, each group includes several diseases, but are grouped together due to some common features such as pathological or etiological features.

When a person comes to the doctor for the first time, immediate disease diagnosis may not be possible due to various reasons. However, considering the presenting clinical features and history given by the patient, the doctor can come to a provisional disease diagnosis. After doing the laboratory investigations, the final diagnosis is done by correlating the clinical findings with investigation reports. However the treatment is not kept in pending till the final diagnosis, especially in case of life threatening diseases such as diphtheria, wherein the treatment has to be started immediately when the disease is suspected, because, if we wait for the lab reports to come, the patient may be critical. Some recent laboratory tests help in early diagnosis, but unavailability of sophisticated labs doing such tests is a major deficiency faced by many countries.

The development of science and technology has made a revolution in medical science. Now the concept of disease diagnosis done only on the basis of clinical examination is outdated. It is now under the custody of some sophisticated machines and laboratory techniques, a few out of them pose more risk to the health. But, the noteworthy point is, under all lab reports, a disclaimer is written as "correlate with clinical findings", which emphasizes the importance of case taking and clinical examination done by the doctor. In this era, wherein doctor-patient relationship is disrupted, we come across many patients saying that the doctor has abruptly prescribed the medicine or referred for lab test without asking much questions and doing any sort of clinical examination.

The recent studies conducted at Mc Master university on the disease diagnosis is remarkable. They found that the name of the disease creates more panic among the patients. For example, a person having sour eructation may not feel bad when the doctor says that he has acidity, on the other hand, he may get embarrassed if the doctor tells him that he has Gastro-esophageal reflex disease, which is the medical terminology for recurrent burning eructations. The same thing happens in most of the cancer patients; once the disease is diagnosed as cancer, the patients mental and emotional status starts deteriorating. But, the doctor cant hide the disease from the patient due to several medical and legal issues. The better alternative is to secretly tell the diagnosis to the bystanders of the patient.

For an accurate disease diagnosis, the cooperation from the patient and his family members is very essential. Each and every problem felt by the patient should be told to the doctor. Some silly matter for the patient may be a vital point for a diagnosis and treatment. Similarly, symptoms of long duration may be ignored by some patients. Purposeful hiding of symptoms can be dangerous. Some patients do not tell the doctor about the treatment he had taken previously. Frequent change of doctor (doctor shopping) can also cause difficulties. During consultation, patients habits, life situations, characters, food and bowel habits, relationship with others etc should be told. The reports of previous treatment and investigations should be told, which may save the time needed for a diagnosis. Hence always ask for a discharge summary while getting discharged from any hospitals. While consulting a doctor, always take one person who knows about the patient. The patient can also note down his symptoms before going for a consultation, so that he will not forget to tell his symptoms completely. In this busy life, there is a trend that instead of patient going to the doctor, he sends somebody to the doctor for a "consultation". Also there is an increase of people preferring over-the-counter purchase of drugs without a prescription.

When a patient dies or becomes serious during the course of treatment, the next step is to file a suit against the doctor or by attacking the doctors and hospitals, as a result of an emotional outbreak and a preconceived idea that it was due to medical negligence. Nowadays this is a common story in most of the news papers. By promoting the doctor-patient relation ship (which is deteriorating nowadays), and also by going back to the "outdated" family doctor concept, we can solve most of the health related issues.