Thursday, December 27, 2012

Lung Cancer

Lung cancer is cancer that starts in the lungs. The lungs are located in the chest. When we breathe, air goes through our nose, down our windpipe, and into the lungs, where it spreads through tubes called bronchi. Most lung cancer begins in the cells that line these tubes.

There are two main types of lung cancer:
  1. Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is the most common type of lung cancer.
  2. Small cell lung cancer makes up about 20% of all lung cancer cases.
If the lung cancer is made up of both types, it is called mixed small cell/large cell cancer. And if the cancer started somewhere else in the body and spread to the lungs, it is called metastatic cancer to the lung.

Symptoms depend on the type of cancer you have, but may include:
  • Chest pain
  • Cough that doesn't go away
  • Coughing up blood
  • Fatigue
  • Losing weight without trying
  • Loss of appetite
  • Shortness of breath
  • Wheezing

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Health Tip of the Day

Eliminate "White Foods" from Your Diet. White flour, white sugar and other processed foods are not only devoid of vitamins and minerals, but they’ve also been stripped of their natural fiber. As a result, they rapidly drive up blood sugar levels, which contributes to weight gain, diabetes and a host of other health problems. Avoid breads and baked goods made with white flour, sugar-laden sodas and snack foods. Instead, focus on eating fiber rich fruits, vegetables, legumes and whole grains.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Human Body

The human body is divided into various regions or parts. Following are the parts:
  1. Head: Head consists of skull and face. Head houses the brain while the face is specially designed to accommodate the eyes, mouth and nose. Head is covered by a soft tissue known as scalp with the characteristic hairs.
  2. Neck: Neck is the narrow part of the body which connects head to thorax.
  3. Thorax: It is the part of the body which lies between neck and abdomen. It is also known as chest. It houses the two vital organs of human body which are the heart and lungs.
  4. Abdomen and pelvis: This region lies below thorax. It contains organs of digestive system, urinary and genital system. The area present between upper parts of two thighs is known as perineum.
  5. Upper limbs: A pair of upper limbs (Arms) is attached at the upper end of trunk of body, one on each side. Each upper limb consists of shoulder region, scapular region, arm, forearm and hand. Upper limb is meant to manipulate external environment e.g., grasping, moving, throwing, catching, screwing etc.
  6. Lower limbs: A pair of lower limbs (legs) is attached at the lower end of trunk of body, one on each side. Each lower limb consists of hip and buttocks, thigh, leg, ankle, heel, foot and toes. Lower limb is meant for locomotion.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


Telemedicine is a rapidly developing application of clinical medicine where medical information is transferred through the phone or the Internet and sometimes other networks for the purpose of consulting, and sometimes remote medical procedures or examinations. Telemedicine can be simplly defined as two health professionals discussing a case over the telephone, or as complex as using satellite technology and video-conferencing equipment to conduct a real-time consultation between medical specialists in two different countries. Telemedicine generally refers to the use of communications and information technologies for the delivery of clinical care.

Care at a distance is an old practice which was often conducted via post. There has been a long and successful history of in absentia health care which, thanks to modern communication technology, has evolved into what we know as modern telemedicine. In its early manifestations, African villagers used smoke signals to warn people to stay away from the village in case of serious disease. In the early 1900s, people living in remote areas in Australia used two-way radios, powered by a dynamo driven by a set of bicycle pedals, to communicate with the Royal Flying Doctor Service of Australia.

The terms e-health and telehealth are at times wrongly interchanged with telemedicine. Like the terms "medicine" and "health care", telemedicine often refers only to the provision of clinical services while the term telehealth can refer to clinical and non-clinical services such as medical education, administration, and research.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Health tip of the Day

Reduce salt consumption by using less salt in cooking and at the table. Reduce your intake of canned and preserved foods, including pickles. Include a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables in your daily diet. Once you start, it takes only a short while to get used to lower levels of salt.

Without salt food is tasteless, but eating it in excess will make you suffer with lot of ailments. Excessive intake adversely affects the digestive system at first. The digestive juices production is being slowed down by the intake of excessive salt. This leads to the indigestion problem. The excessive amount of the salt in the body increases the blood pressure. Insomnia is another health problem caused by eating salt in excess. The excessive intake of salt can lead to hypertension; this puts a lot of pressure on heart.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Alternate Medicine: Acupuncture

Acupuncture is an alternative medicine methodology originating in ancient China that treats patients by manipulating thin, solid needles that have been inserted into acupuncture points in the skin. According to Traditional Chinese medicine, stimulating these points can correct imbalances in the flow of qi through channels known as meridians.

Current scientific research indicates that traditional forms of acupuncture are more effective than placebos in the relief of certain types of pain and post-operative nausea. Other reviews have concluded that positive results reported for acupuncture are too small to be of clinical relevance and may be the result of inadequate experimental blinding. The invasiveness of acupuncture makes it difficult to design an experiment that adequately controls for placebo effects.

Acupuncture's use for certain conditions has been endorsed by the United States National Institutes of Health, the National Health Service of the United Kingdom, the World Health Organization and the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Some scientists have criticized these endorsements as being unduly credulous and not including objections to or criticisms of the research used to support acupuncture's effectiveness. There is general agreement that acupuncture is safe when administered by well-trained practitioners using sterile needles and carries a very low risk of serious adverse effects.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Helth Tip of the Day

Research  suggests that, if you hydrate yourself it can be a good treatment for an acute migraine. So next time you have headaches try drinking a full glass of water. As research says dehydration can trigger headaches. Even if you need to take a medication for the pain, try wrapping your head with an Ace bandage so that it covers your eyes, then lie down and breathe deeply. This often helps the pain pass more quickly.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Alternate Medicine: ACUPRESSURE

Acupressure is an ancient healing art using the fingers to gradually press key healing points, which stimulate the body's natural self-curative abilities. Acupressure was developed in Asia over 5,000 years ago. Using the power and sensitivity of the hand, Acupressure Therapy is effective in the relief of stress-related ailments, and is ideal for self-treatment and preventive health care for boosting the immune system. Acupressure releases tension, increases circulation, reduces pain, and develops spirituality and vibrant health.

The Applications of Using Acupressure include relieving pain, balancing body energy, and maintaining good health. Acupressure's healing touch reduces muscular tension, increases circulation, and enables deep relaxation. By relieving stress, Acupressure Therapy strengthens resistance to disease and promotes wellness. Anyone can learn self-care applications and pressure point formulas for specific conditions, such as chronic fatigue, chronic muscular pain, mental stress, addiction recovery, learning disorders, trauma, emotional imbalances and more.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Alternate Medicine: Siddha

The Siddha Medicine is one of the oldest medical systems known to mankind. It is originated from Tamil Nadu. It was very popular in ancient India and believed to be more than 2500 years old.

Siddhas belivedd to be developed by the siddhars. Siddhars were spiritual adepts who possessed the ashta siddhis, or the eight supernatural powers. Sage Agathiyar is considered the guru of all Sidhars, and the Siddha system is believed to have been handed over to him by Lord Muruga, son of the Hindu God - Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvathi. So, are the siddhars the followers of Lord Shiva (Shaivaites). Agathiyar is the first Siddhar, and his disciples and other siddhars of other schools contributed thousands of texts on Siddha, including medicine, and form the propounders of the system in this world.

The Central Council for Research in Ayurveda and Siddha (CCRAS), established in 1978, by Department of Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homoeopathy (AYUSH), Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India, coordinates and promotes research in the fields of Ayurveda and Siddha medicine. Also, the Central Council of Indian Medicine (CCIM), a statutory body established in 1971 under AYUSH, monitors higher education in areas of Indian medicine, including Siddha.

Generally the basic concepts of the Siddha medicine are almost similar to Ayurveda. The only difference appears to be that the siddha medicine recognizes predominance of vata, pitta and kapha in childhood, adulthood and old age, respectively, whereas in Ayurveda, it is totally reversed: kapam is dominant in childhood, vata in old age and pitham in adults.

According to the Siddha medicine, various psychological and physiological functions of the body are attributed to the combination of seven elements: first is saram (plasma) responsible for growth, development and nourishment; second is cheneer (blood) responsible for nourishing muscles, imparting colour and improving intellect; the third is ooun (muscle) responsible for shape of the body; fourth is kollzuppu (fatty tissue) responsible for oil balance and lubricating joints; fifth is elumbu (bone) responsible for body structure and posture and movement; sixth is moolai (brain) responsible for strength; and the last is sukila (semen) responsible for reproduction. Like in Ayurveda, in Siddha medicine also, the physiological components of the human beings are classified as vata (air), pitta (fire) and kapha (earth and water).

It is assumed that when the normal equilibrium of the three humors (vata, pitha and kapha) is disturbed, disease is caused. The factors, which assumed to affect this equilibrium are environment, climatic conditions, diet, physical activities, and stress. Under normal conditions, the ratio between these three humors (vata, pitha and kapha)ie:(Vadham, Pittham,Kabam in Tamil) is 4:2:1, respectively.

According to the siddha medicine system, diet and lifestyle play a major role, not only in health but also in curing diseases. This concept of the siddha medicine is termed as pathyam and apathya, which is essentially a list of "do's and dont's".

Monday, September 10, 2012

Alternate Medicine: Unani

Unani medicine originated in Greece or Unan. It was the Greek philosopher-physician Hippocrates (460-377BC) who freed medicine from the realm of superstition and magic and gave the status of science. After Hippocrates, a number of Greek scholars enriched the system and it imbibed the best from contemporary system of medicine in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Persia, India, china and other Middle east and far East countries.

The fundamental principle of the unani system recognizes that disease is a natural process and symptoms of a disease are body's reaction to disease. The chief function of the physician is to aid the natural forces of the body. The unani medicine is based on the Humoral theory-which presupposes the presence of four humors. They are Dum (blood), Balgham (phlegm), Safra (yellow bile) and Sauda ( black bile). The body has the power of self preservation to maintain a correct balance of these humors, which is called as Quwwat-e-Mudabbira (Medicatrix natura). Unani medicines help the body to regain this balance.

The essential constituents and the working principles of the body, according to Unani, can be classified into seven main groups: arkan or elements, comprising earth, water, air and fire as different states of matter and the building blocks of everything in the universe; mizaj (temperament); akhlat (humours); aza (organs); arwah (life, spirits or vital breaths); quva (energy); and af'al (action).

Each of the four elements has its own special qualities: earth is cold and dry; water is cold and moist; fire is hot and dry; air is hot and moist. The resultant quality of the uniform body is called its mizaj. The temperament of a substance may be a mizaj-e-mutadil (balanced one) or a mizaj-e-ghair-mutadil (imbalanced one).

Different types and shades of imbalanced temperaments are described in Unani, which believes that at birth every person is endowed with a unique and healthy humoural constitution determining the temperament of an individual.

The unani Physician-called Hakim diagnoses a disease by feeling the Nabz(pulse) and rhythmic expansion of arteries by fingers. stool and urine examination also help in diagnosis. Four types of treatment lines are available:

  1. Ilaj bil tadbeer (regimental therapy)
  2. Ilaj bil Ghiza (dietotherapy)
  3. Ilaj bil dawa (Pharmacotherapy)
  4. Jarahat (Surgery).

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Alternate Medicine: Naturopathy

Naturopathy, or Naturopathic Medicine, is a type of alternative medicine based on a belief in vital-ism. It posits that a special energy called vital energy or vital force guides bodily processes such as metabolism, reproduction, growth, and adaptation. Naturopathy favors a holistic approach with non-invasive treatment by encouraging minimal use of surgery and drugs.

The term "naturopathy" is derived from Greek and Latin, and literally translates as "nature disease".
Naturopathy comprises many different treatment modalities of varying degrees of acceptance by the conventional medical community; these treatments range from standard evidence-based treatments, to homeopathy and other practices sometimes characterized as pseudoscience.

The ideology and methodological underpinnings of naturopathy are in conflict with the paradigm of evidence-based medicine. Naturopathy focuses on naturally-occurring substances, minimally-invasive methods, and encouragement of natural healing. Naturopaths generally favor an intuitive and vitalistic conception of the body, and complete rejection of biomedicine and modern science is common. Prevention through stress reduction and a healthy diet and lifestyle is emphasized, and pharmaceutical drugs, ionizing radiation, and surgery are generally minimized. The tenet of naturopathic practice is self-described by six core values.
  1. Do no harm; provide the most effective health care available with the least risk to patients at all times.
  2. Recognize, respect and promote the self-healing power of nature inherent in each individual human being.
  3. Identify and remove the causes of illness, rather than eliminate or suppress symptoms.
  4. Educate, inspire rational hope and encourage self-responsibility for health.
  5. Treat each person by considering all individual health factors and influences.
  6. Emphasize the condition of health to promote well-being and to prevent diseases for the individual, each community and our world.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Alternate Medicine: YOGA

Yoga is commonly known as a generic term for a physical, mental, and spiritual discipline originating in ancient India and found in Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism.Yoga is one of the six orthodox schools in Hindu philosophy. It is based on the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali and aims to use meditation to attain spiritual insight and tranquility. The aim of yoga is varied and ranges from improving health to achieving moksha.

There has been an emergence of studies investigating yoga as a complementary intervention for cancer patients. Yoga is used for treatment of cancer patients to decrease depression, insomnia, pain, and fatigue and increase anxiety control. Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) programs include yoga as a mind-body technique to reduce stress. A study found that after seven weeks the group treated with yoga reported significantly less mood disturbance and reduced stress compared to the control group. Another study found that MBSR had showed positive effects on sleep anxiety, quality of life, and spiritual growth.
Yoga has also been studied as a treatment for schizophrenia. Yoga is found to improve cognitive functions and reduce stress in schizophrenia, a condition associated with cognitive deficits and stress-related relapse. In one study, at the end of four months those patients treated with yoga were better in their social and occupational functions and quality of life. The three main focuses of Hatha yoga (exercise, breathing, and meditation) make it beneficial to those suffering from heart disease. Overall, studies of the effects of yoga on heart disease suggest that yoga may reduce high blood pressure, improve symptoms of heart failure, enhance cardiac rehabilitation, and lower cardiovascular risk factors.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Alternative Medicine Systems

1. Ayurveda is that knowledge of life, which deals elaborately and at length with conditions beneficial or otherwise to the humanity. It deals with getting to the root of the issue and treatments involve the usage of natural/ herbal products.

2. Yoga is a science as well an art of healthy living physically, mentally, morally and spiritually. It is not limited by race, age, sex, religion, cast or creed and can be practiced by those who seek fitness and well-being.

3. Naturopathy or Nature Cure treatment primarily stresses on the curing of the body in the most natural manner i.e. give the body time to heal on its own. The five main modalities of treatment are air, water, heat, mud and space.

4. Homeopathy has been practiced in India for more than a century and a half. It is recognised as one of the National Systems of Medicine and plays an important role in providing health care to a large number of people. Its strength lies in its holistic approach towards the sick individual through promotion of inner balance at mental, emotional, spiritual and physical levels.

5. Unani postulates that the body contains a self-preservative power, which strives to restore any disturbance within the limits prescribed by the constitution or State of the individual. The physician merely aims to help and develop rather than supersede or impede the action of this power.

6. Siddha is very similar to Ayurveda. In the Siddha system, chemistry has been well developed into a science auxiliary to medicine and alchemy. The knowledge of plants and mineral are of very high order in this form of treatment.

7. Acupressure is the application of pressure or localized massage to specific sites on the body to control symptoms such as pain or nausea. This therapy is also used to stop bleeding. It is derived from traditional Chinese medicine, which is a form of treatment for pain that involves pressure on particular points in the body knows as "acupressure points".

8. Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese form of medicine, which involves the insertion of pins in certain vital points of the body. It is used for the treatment of chronic pain conditions such as arthritis, bursitis, headache, athletic injuries, and posttraumatic and post surgical pain. It is also used for treating chronic pain associated with immune function dysfunction such as psoriasis (skin disorders), allergies, and asthma. Some modern application of acupuncture is in the treatment of disorders such as alcoholism, addiction, smoking, and eating disorders.

9. Telemedicine refers to the use of communication and information technologies for the delivery of clinical care. It may be as simple as two health professionals discussing a case over the telephone, or as complex as using satellite technology and video-conferencing equipment to conduct a real-time consultation between medical specialists in two different countries. The Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DEIT) - External website that opens in a new window had taken up the initiative for defining the Standards for Telemedicine Systems in India, through the deliberations of the committee on "Standardization of digital information to facilitate implementation of Telemedicine system using IT enabled services (External website that opens in a new window)" under the chairmanship of the Secretary, DIT. Simultaneously, DIT undertook another initiative, in a project mode, for defining "The framework of Information Technology Infrastructure for Health (ITIH)" to efficiently address information needs of different stakeholders in the healthcare sector. The department has issue specific guidelines for practicing telemedicine in India.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Steroid resistant asthma

Asthma is usually a steroid responsive disease. A few patients respond poorly to these drugs, and others need such high doses to control the disease that side-effects become a serious problem. The term steroid resistant asthma is used for both groups. In some patients, factors may be operating to make the asthma worse and, thus, to increase the requirement for steroids.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Occupational Asthma

Occupational asthma is a lung disorder in which substances found in the workplace cause the airways of the lungs to swell and narrow, leading to attacks of wheezing, shortness of breath, chest tightness, and coughing.

Many substances in the workplace can cause occupational asthma. The most common triggers are wood dust, grain dust, animal dander, fungi, or other chemicals (especially diisocyanates).
Though the actual rate of occurrence of occupational asthma is unknown, it is suspected to cause 2 - 20% of all asthma cases in industrialized nations.
The following workers are at higher risk:
  • Bakers
  • Detergent manufacturers
  • Drug manufacturers
  • Farmers
  • Grain elevator workers
  • Laboratory workers
  • Metal workers
  • Millers
  • Plastics workers
  • Woodworkers

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Nocturnal Asthma

Nocturnal asthma is also called as Nighttime Asthma. It has symptoms like chest tightness, shortness of breath, cough, and wheezing at night, can make sleep impossible and leave you feeling tired and irritable during the day. These problems may affect your quality of life overall and make it more difficult to control your daytime asthma symptoms.
Nocturnal or nighttime asthma is very serious. It needs a proper asthma diagnosis and effective asthma treatment.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Exercise-Induced Asthma

Even exercise can induce an asthma attack in people who have no other triggers and do not experience asthma under any other circumstances.People with exercise-induced asthma are believed to be more sensitive to changes in the temperature and humidity of the air.When you are at rest, you breathe through your nose, which serves to warm, humidify, and cleanse the air you inhale to make it more like the air in the lungs.
When you are exercising, you breathe through your mouth, and the air that hits your lungs is colder and drier. The contrast between the warm air in the lungs and the cold inhaled air or the dry inhaled air and moist air in the lungs, can trigger an attack.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Intrinsic asthma

Intrinsic asthma, is a nonseasonal, nonallergic form of asthma, which usually first occurs later in life than allergic asthma and tends to be chronic and persistent rather than episodic. Precipitating factors include inhalation of irritating pollutants, such as dust particles, smoke, aerosols, strong cooking odors, and paint fumes and other volatile substances. Intrinsic asthma may also be triggered by exposure to cold, damp weather; sudden inhalation of cold, dry air; physical exercise; violent coughing or laughing; respiratory infections, such as the common cold; or psychologic factors, such as anxiety.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Allergic Asthma

Most people find several things trigger their asthma. Some of the most common predisposing factors for asthma are allergies to:
  • House dust mites
  • Mould spores
  • Pollen
  • Pets
  • Food or food preservative
Allergic asthma is the most common type of asthma. Inhaling specific substances called allergens (listed above) brings on the asthma symptoms associated with allergic asthma. Nearly everyone with asthma allergic or non-allergic gets worse after exercising in cold air or after inhaling any type of smoke, dust, fumes, and sometimes strong smells.
Because allergens are everywhere, it's important that people with allergic asthma understand their allergy and asthma triggers. And then learn the facts about preventing asthma symptoms. If anyone has allergic asthma, their airways are hypersensitive to the allergens to which they have become sensitized. Once these allergens get into your airways, your immune system overreacts. The muscles around your airways tighten. The airways themselves become inflamed and flooded with thick mucus.
Whether you have allergic asthma or non-allergic asthma, the symptoms of asthma is generally the same and may include any or all of the following:
  • Coughing
  • Wheezing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Rapid breathing
  • Tightening of the chest

Saturday, March 31, 2012


Asthma is a chronic lung disease that inflames and narrows the airways. Symptoms of Asthma are recurring periods of wheezing, chest tightness, shortness of breath and coughing. The coughing often occurs at night or early in the morning. They tend to react strongly to certain substances that are breathed in. As a result muscles around them tighten. This causes the airways to narrow, and less air flows to lungs. The swelling also can worsen, making the airways even narrower. Cells in the airways may make more mucus than normal. Mucus is a sticky, thick liquid that can further narrow airways. About 12 percent of children (< 18 years) and 8 percent of pregnant women have asthma.
Its diagnosis is usually made based on the pattern of symptoms and/or response to therapy over time. In 2009 asthma caused 250,000 deaths globally.

Types of Asthma:

Allergic Asthma
Intrinsic Asthma
Exercise-Induced Asthma
Nocturnal Asthma
Occupational Asthma
Steroid-Resistant Asthma