Health and Health Conditions


How to Recognize and What to Do About Allergic Reactions to Bee and Wasp Stings

If you or someone you know just got stung and you are having any of the following symtpoms:

  • choking
  • trouble breathing
  • feeling faint or dizzy
  • experiencing generalized (other than the sting site) hives, itching, or swelling
  • dilated pupils
  • blueness around lips and mouth (or other blueness of skin other than the sting site)
  • any other generalized reactions other than on the area of the sting itself:

READ NO FURTHER!

ACTIVATE EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICES by calling 911 or the appropriate telephone number for your country. Tell the operator that someone is having a severe reaction to a sting and may be suffering from anaphylaxis (an-a-fi-lak-sis). You are having a systemic reaction to a bee or wasp sting, which should be considered a medical emergency. Otherwise, read on to learn more about systemic allergic reactions to bee or wasp stings.

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Alkalosis

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Acidosis

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Acid-Base Balance

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Metabolically-Healthy Obesity

This is a each part of a 5-part series delving into the fascinating and seemingly paradoxical research on people who despite being obese, remain metabolically-healthy.

Is Metabolically Healthy Obesity an Oxymoron?

To date, countless epidemiological studies have shown that as you move from a normal weight (BMI = 18.5-24.9 kg/m2) towards overweight (BMI = 25-29.9kg/m2) and obesity (BMI ≥ 30 kg/m2) the risk of many diseases increases exponentially.

Does this imply that every individual carrying excess weight is guaranteed to develop diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer, or some other disease?

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Cam Domains (Categories of Complementary and Alternative Medicine)

The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) divides CAM practices into four broad domains; it is recognized that there could be some crossover among the CAM domains. NCCAM also studies CAM systems that cut across all four domains (they are called whole medical system).

The four domains are:

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Can Shingles Cause Pain in the Shoulder Blades?

The term "shingles" refers to a condition caused by the varicella zoster virus, the same virus that causes chicken pox disease. After a person has had the chicken pox, the virus remains dormant, residing in nerve cells. Later on, as a result of many different factors, the virus may reactivate and leave the nerve cell and this is what causes herpes zoster, or shingles.

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How Strength Training Justifies Being Overweight

I was just reading a review of Mark Young's new "How to Read Fitness Research" product. A few questions occurred to me. One, what in the heck is fitness research? There are so many different types of studies and different types of subjects, all of which could fall under the "fitness" umbrella. Many of these have their own specific pitfalls and unique challenges. A person would need to have a more thorough background in the sub-disciplines before simply "learning how to read a study".

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Diet and Acne: What is the Evidence?

Acne sufferers have been reporting an association between specific food intake and acne outbreaks for many years. For instance, many many people have claimed that chocolate consumption either exacerbated or caused acne outbreaks. In fact, that chocolate causes acne was once accepted as fact by the lay public. Fatty foods are also frequently implicated. Milk and dairy products have been long associated with acne as well. However most studies have failed to find a correlation between diet and acne and it was long concluded that genetic predisposition and hormonal factors played the largest role.

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What Are Diuretics and Why are They Used in Sports and Bodybuilding?

A diuretic is any agent that acts to increase urine. Diuretics increase the excretion of water and electrolytes from the body's fluids. They thereby decrease the extracellular fluid volume. They are used to adjust the volume or composition of the body fluids in many different clinical situations such as high blood pressure, heart failure, renal failure and nephrotic syndrome. The common name for diuretic drugs are "water pills."

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Idiopathic (Primary) Achalasia

Idiopathic achalasia is a primary esophageal motor disorder characterized by esophageal aperistalsis and abnormal lower esophageal sphincter (LES) relaxation in response to deglutition. It is a rare disease with an annual incidence of approximately 1/100,000 and a prevalence rate of 1/10,000. The disease can occur at any age, with a similar rate in men and women, but is usually diagnosed between 25 and 60 years. It is characterized predominantly by dysphagia to solids and liquids, bland regurgitation, and chest pain. Weight loss (usually between 5 to 10 kg) is present in most but not in all patients. Heartburn occurs in 27%–42% of achalasia patients. Etiology is unknown. Some familial cases have been reported, but the rarity of familial occurrence does not support the hypothesis that genetic inheritance is a significant etiologic factor. Association of achalasia with viral infections and auto-antibodies against myenteric plexus has been reported, but the causal relationship remains unclear. The diagnosis is based on history of the disease, radiography (barium esophagogram), and esophageal motility testing (esophageal manometry). Endoscopic examination is important to rule out malignancy as the cause of achalasia. Treatment is strictly palliative. Current medical and surgical therapeutic options (pneumatic dilation, surgical myotomy, and pharmacologic agents) aimed at reducing the LES pressure and facilitating esophageal emptying by gravity and hydrostatic pressure of retained food and liquids. Although it cannot be permanently cured, excellent palliation is available in over 90% of patients.

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Dysphagia: Difficulty Swallowing

Dysphagia is a word that refers to having any difficulty with swallowing. People with dysphagia may even have pain while swallowing (odynophagia). They may be unable to swallow at all or have trouble swallowing food, liquids or saliva safely. Eating becomes a great challenge and the difficulty this causes in getting enough calories and fluids for the body can cause serious malnutrition or other medical problems.

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Achalasia: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatments

Achalasia is a disorder of the esophagus, the tube that carries food from the mouth to the stomach. It is characterized by enlargement of the esophagus, impaired ability of the esophagus to push food down toward the stomach (peristalsis), and failure of the ring-shaped muscle at the bottom of the esophagus, the lower esophageal sphincter, to relax.

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