Tuesday, October 21, 2014

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There are three kinds of tachycardia:

  • sinus tachycardia
  • atrial or supraventricular tachycardia
  • ventricular tachycardia

Supraventricular tachycardia (SVT) is also known as atrial tachycardia, as the upper chambers of the heart are called “atriums”. It is more common in women, smokers, alcohol drinkers, and caffeine consumers. SVT can cause symptoms such as shortness of breath, dizziness, palpitations, or chest pain.

SVT can lead to cardiac arrest, although it is less likely to due to compared to ventricular tachycardia.

Common therapies for SVT include simple things like a carotid massage and the Valsalva maneuver, as well as medications. If necessary, electrocardioversion may also be used to shock the patient back to a sinus rhythm.

You can learn more here:
American Heart Association
John Hopkins Medicine

Monday, October 20, 2014

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There are three kinds of tachycardia:

  • sinus tachycardia
  • atrial or supraventricular tachycardia
  • ventricular tachycardia

Out of these, sinus tachycardia is the most benign and is typically a normal physiological response to things like exercise, anxiety, fear, and fever. It is a result of quickened firing of the sinoatrial node, the heart’s “pacemaker”, in a regular rhythm. Symptoms include dizziness, lightheadedness, shortness of breath, palpitations, and more.

Sinus tachycardia can also be a symptom of a more serious condition, such as anemia, thyroid problems, or a heart attack. As such, the presence of sinus tachycardia, while not concerning by itself, may warrant further investigation.

You can learn more here:
MayoClinic
American Heart Association

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Like dengue fever, dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF) is spread by mosquitoes.

DHF is characterized by a fever that lasts about a week. Following the fever, the patient may also develop nausea, vomiting, shortness of breath, and abdominal pain.

A dangerous period of DHF is when the patient’s capillaries become excessively permeable. This allows extra fluid to leak out of the blood vessels and into other areas of the body, causing complications such as ascites and pleural effusions. Ultimately, this may lead to organ failure, shock, and death.

You can learn more here:
World Health Organization
MedlinePlus
Center for Disease Control and Prevention

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Dengue fever is theorized to have originated in monkeys, transferring to humans between 100 to 800 years ago. Before the 1970s, dengue fever was found primarily in 9 countries with little geographical spread. Since then, dengue fever has spread to over 100 countries and is now affecting an estimated 50-100 million people per year.

As dengue fever is mosquito-borne, it is endemic, returning every year with the rise of the mosquito population in affected areas. The WHO estimates that approximately 40% of the world population is at risk for dengue fever.

You can learn more here:
World Health Organization
MedlinePlus
Center for Disease Control and Prevention

Friday, October 17, 2014

While the origins of the ebola virus disease (EVD) remain unclear, current evidence points to fruit bats being the natural virus host. It is thought that the virus then spread to human hosts through contact with fruit bat carcasses or other human-animal contacts.

There are five known strains of EVD: Zaire, Bundibugyo, Sudan, Reston and Taï Forest. The current 2014 outbreak that was declared an international emergency by the WHO is caused by the Zaire strain.

You can learn more here:
World Health Organization
Center for Disease Control and Prevention

Thursday, October 16, 2014

I am happy to answer questions to the best of my ability. Please remember that if I receive an anonymous question, I am unable to respond without publishing it publicly to the blog. To allow private responses, please do not send anonymous asks. I promise the utmost confidentiality.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013
Aspirin works to prevent the formation of clots in your vascular system. Clots tend to form on ruptured atherosclerotic plaques that build up along the lining of your blood vessels over the years. Plaque can build up in response to injury caused by a variety of mechanisms: high blood pressure, abnormal blood sugar, toxins inhaled through smoking, and a number of other possible factors.
These clots can become dislodged from the vessel they originate from and cause even more serious conditions like a pulmonary embolism or a stroke.
You can learn more about aspirin here:
Medline PlusAmerican Heart Association

Aspirin works to prevent the formation of clots in your vascular system. Clots tend to form on ruptured atherosclerotic plaques that build up along the lining of your blood vessels over the years. Plaque can build up in response to injury caused by a variety of mechanisms: high blood pressure, abnormal blood sugar, toxins inhaled through smoking, and a number of other possible factors.

These clots can become dislodged from the vessel they originate from and cause even more serious conditions like a pulmonary embolism or a stroke.

You can learn more about aspirin here:

Medline Plus
American Heart Association

Friday, July 20, 2012
Blood clots occur when blood thickens in an area and clumps together. When clots start moving around the bloodstream, they may get caught in various areas of the body, leading to severe damage. DVTs are most common in adults over the age of 60. They’re more likely to occur with people who have a family history of blood clots, have fractures in the pelvis or legs, have given birth in the last six months, are obese, have recently had surgery, have cancer, and more. The clots form when you are inactive, so long periods of inactivity, be it on a long flight or when you are bedridden, can increase risks of DVTs. You can learn more here: WebMD MedlinePlus Nat’l Heart Lung and Blood Institute
Blood clots occur when blood thickens in an area and clumps together. When clots start moving around the bloodstream, they may get caught in various areas of the body, leading to severe damage.

DVTs are most common in adults over the age of 60. They’re more likely to occur with people who have a family history of blood clots, have fractures in the pelvis or legs, have given birth in the last six months, are obese, have recently had surgery, have cancer, and more. The clots form when you are inactive, so long periods of inactivity, be it on a long flight or when you are bedridden, can increase risks of DVTs.

You can learn more here:
WebMD
MedlinePlus
Nat’l Heart Lung and Blood Institute
Monday, July 16, 2012
ADH works by signaling the collecting ducts of the kidney to promote increased reabsorption of water into your system. ADH is produced by the hypothalamus and released by the posterior lobe of your pituitary gland. ADH can be blocked by a number of drugs, including alcohol. This is why the need to urinate increases with alcohol consumption as well as explains the need to stay hydrated while drinking, as the alcohol blocks ADH from working properly. You can learn more here: ColoState Medline Plus
ADH works by signaling the collecting ducts of the kidney to promote increased reabsorption of water into your system. ADH is produced by the hypothalamus and released by the posterior lobe of your pituitary gland.

ADH can be blocked by a number of drugs, including alcohol. This is why the need to urinate increases with alcohol consumption as well as explains the need to stay hydrated while drinking, as the alcohol blocks ADH from working properly.

You can learn more here:
ColoState
Medline Plus
Sunday, July 15, 2012
Bradycardia is not necessarily bad. In young fit adults and athletes or when you are in a deep sleep, a low heart rate is actually very common. However, it can also be indicative of an underlying problem with the heart’s electrical impulses - be it that the sinoatrial node, the heart’s natural pacemaker, is malfunctioning, or the electrical pathways have been disrupted. If the bradycardia is severe, the heart may not be pumping enough blood for bodily circulation, which can be life threatening. Bradycardia is most often developed by adults over 65 years old. As you age, your cardiovascular system may start failing, leading to problems like bradycardia. You can learn more here: WebMD American Heart Association
Bradycardia is not necessarily bad. In young fit adults and athletes or when you are in a deep sleep, a low heart rate is actually very common.

However, it can also be indicative of an underlying problem with the heart’s electrical impulses - be it that the sinoatrial node, the heart’s natural pacemaker, is malfunctioning, or the electrical pathways have been disrupted. If the bradycardia is severe, the heart may not be pumping enough blood for bodily circulation, which can be life threatening.

Bradycardia is most often developed by adults over 65 years old. As you age, your cardiovascular system may start failing, leading to problems like bradycardia.

You can learn more here:
WebMD
American Heart Association
Saturday, July 14, 2012
This state allows a patient to under surgeries and procedures that would otherwise cause them to undergo severe amounts of pain and possibly traumatize them. There are four parts of general anesthesia: - analgesics (painkillers) makes the patient unresponsive to pain - amnesiacs so the patient will have no memory of any unpleasantness of the procedure - prevention of spontaneous ventilation due to muscle paralysis - sedatives keep heart rate down and body calm through procedure You can learn more here: MedScape MedlinePlus
This state allows a patient to under surgeries and procedures that would otherwise cause them to undergo severe amounts of pain and possibly traumatize them.

There are four parts of general anesthesia:
- analgesics (painkillers) makes the patient unresponsive to pain
- amnesiacs so the patient will have no memory of any unpleasantness of the procedure
- prevention of spontaneous ventilation due to muscle paralysis
- sedatives keep heart rate down and body calm through procedure

You can learn more here:
MedScape

MedlinePlus
Friday, July 13, 2012
Sputum is mucus coughed up from your respiratory tract. Similar to chronic bronchitis, acute bronchitis can be treated symptomatically. As long as the patient is getting enough oxygen, the body will recover on its own. Cough suppressants such as codeine and dextromethorphan might be prescribed. NSAIDs can help with pain relief. Antibiotics have not been proven to have any huge effect. Senior citizens, young children, people with heart or lung disease, as well as smokers are at risk for bronchitis.
You can learn more here: MedScape MayoClinic PubMed
Sputum is mucus coughed up from your respiratory tract.

Similar to chronic bronchitis, acute bronchitis can be treated symptomatically. As long as the patient is getting enough oxygen, the body will recover on its own. Cough suppressants such as codeine and dextromethorphan might be prescribed. NSAIDs can help with pain relief. Antibiotics have not been proven to have any huge effect.

Senior citizens, young children, people with heart or lung disease, as well as smokers are at risk for bronchitis.

You can learn more here:
MedScape
MayoClinic
PubMed
Thursday, July 12, 2012
The more smart sounding way: Chronic bronchitis is when your mucus-producing glands in cartilaginous airways undergo hypertrophy and progressively limits airflow more and more. It can also be called chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Bronchitis is extremely common, and occurs when your bronchial tubes have been inflamed. Bronchi are the air passages that go from your trachea to alveoli in the lungs. You can learn more here: MedScape MayoClinic PubMed
The more smart sounding way: Chronic bronchitis is when your mucus-producing glands in cartilaginous airways undergo hypertrophy and progressively limits airflow more and more. It can also be called chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Bronchitis is extremely common, and occurs when your bronchial tubes have been inflamed. Bronchi are the air passages that go from your trachea to alveoli in the lungs.

You can learn more here:
MedScape
MayoClinic
PubMed
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
The eruption usually occurs a few hours after bathing in seawater. About 98% of patients suffer from pruritus (translation: itchiness) which usually lasts about 1 to 2 weeks. It can also cause fever, nausea, diarrhea, and abdominal pain, although more rarely and usually in children as opposed to adults. Seabather’s eruption is basically an allergic reaction and will generally not require hospitalization. The specific larvae the reaction is to can vary by area. Long Island waters contain the larvae of sea anemone, while Florida waters contain thimble jellyfish larvae. You can learn more here: MedScape NYC Dept of Health
The eruption usually occurs a few hours after bathing in seawater. About 98% of patients suffer from pruritus (translation: itchiness) which usually lasts about 1 to 2 weeks. It can also cause fever, nausea, diarrhea, and abdominal pain, although more rarely and usually in children as opposed to adults.

Seabather’s eruption is basically an allergic reaction and will generally not require hospitalization. The specific larvae the reaction is to can vary by area. Long Island waters contain the larvae of sea anemone, while Florida waters contain thimble jellyfish larvae.

You can learn more here:
MedScape
NYC Dept of Health
Usually, skin cells grow deep in the skin and rise to the surface about once a month. In people with psoriasis, the immune system sends out faulty signals that causes the cycle to speed up too much. Dead skin cells build up on the skin’s surface. The most common form of psoriasis is called plaque psoriasis and appears as red patches covered with a white sheet of dead cells that have built up. Other types of psoriasis include guttate, inverse, pustular, and erythrodermic psoriasis. You can learn more here:PubMedNational Psoriasis FoundationWebMD
Usually, skin cells grow deep in the skin and rise to the surface about once a month. In people with psoriasis, the immune system sends out faulty signals that causes the cycle to speed up too much. Dead skin cells build up on the skin’s surface. The most common form of psoriasis is called plaque psoriasis and appears as red patches covered with a white sheet of dead cells that have built up. Other types of psoriasis include guttate, inverse, pustular, and erythrodermic psoriasis.

You can learn more here:
PubMed
National Psoriasis Foundation
WebMD