Understanding Adhesive Capsulitis

Frozen shoulder, also known as adhesive capsulitis, is a condition that causes the joints of the shoulder to become stiff. This stiffness often results in pain and discomfort when a person affected with this condition attempts to move the shoulder. Although adhesive capsulitis is a slow progressing condition it also generally improves on its own over time as well. Unfortunately it is not uncommon for this process to take an extensive period of time.

One thing that may increase the risk of being afflicted with this condition is when a person sustains an injury that requires the arm to be still or immobile for a long period of time. This is most common with breaks or dislocations that require immobility of the shoulder. The most common treatment for adhesive capsulitis is generally through the use of injections of corticosteroids into the joint of the shoulder. Surgical intervention may also be used however this is generally a last resort and only used in extreme cases.

There are three specific stages associated with frozen shoulder and each stage continues for several months before advancing to the next. These three stages consist of the painful stage, the frozen stage and the thawing stage.

Painful Stage

During this stage of adhesive capsulitis a person generally feels pain when any attempt is made to move the shoulder. This is when the range of motion first shows signs of becoming limited and the range of motion that is present causes various degrees of pain.

Frozen Stage

When the frozen stage is reached the pain may decrease or diminish somewhat however the range of motion becomes even more limited making movement very difficult if not impossible.

Thawing Stage

When this stage begins it indicates that the shoulder is beginning to loosen up or thaw. This means that the pain previously felt has significantly decreased. This also means that the joints of the shoulder are beginning to loosen up and become unfrozen allowing the shoulder to begin to move freely once again.

It is not uncommon for the pain that accompanies frozen shoulder to be increased at night. This of course may present some problems sleeping for many individuals. There are various stretching exercises that may be done to help alleviate pain and increase the range of motion thus making sleep easier.

The joints of a shoulder are made up of bones, tendons and ligaments. These are surrounded by a capsule of tissue. When adhesive capsulitis develops this capsule becomes thick thus tightening around the joint. This leads to the freezing or loss of motion of the joint.

Although it is unclear exactly what causes some people to develop adhesive capsulitis while others do not there are several treatment options that may be used over the course of this condition. The first treatment that is generally used is various stretching exercise to preserve as much movement of the joint as possible. In some cases this is sufficient treatment however there are times when this is combined with other treatments as well. This is often determined by the severity of the condition as well as the specific person in question.

Understanding the Dangers of Chickenpox

In years past it was quite common for nearly all children to get chickenpox at some point during their children. Today however this occurrence has dramatically decreased due to the introduction of the chickenpox vaccine. Chickenpox is cause by a virus known as varicella zoster and the vaccine for chickenpox is appropriately named the varicella vaccine. This vaccine has prevented huge numbers of children from contracting chickenpox and dealing with the many complications that this virus can cause.

For most children chickenpox is a mild occurrence that presents few if any lasting health concerns. For other children however this condition can become severe and cause serious risks to the health of the child. Unfortunately there is no way to know just which children will face a severe case of chickenpox and which ones will not. It is for this reason the varicella vaccine was created to prevent as many children as possible from developing chickenpox.

There are many symptoms that may accompany chickenpox and indicate that a child has been infected with the varicella zoster virus. The most common signs and symptoms of chickenpox include the following:

Fever

Stomach pain

Loss of appetite

Headache

Irritability

Dry cough

Rash that resembles insect bites usually in the area of the face, neck, back and chest

Blisters that become crusted after rupture

These are the most common symptoms of chickenpox and generally present no serious concerns for most children. If your child experiences an extreme case of chickenpox or complications from this virus you should contact your health care provider for further evaluation of the condition.

Chickenpox is a highly contagious virus and can be spread both by contact with the rash of an infected person or by being in close proximity to the cough or sneeze of an infected person. Some individuals are at a higher risk of contracting chickenpox however others may have little or no risk of this. Those who are at a higher risk of developing chickenpox include the following:

Those who have never had chickenpox

Those who have not been vaccinated against chickenpox

Those who live or work in close proximity with children such as in schools or child care facilities

In general if you have received the varicella vaccine you have developed immunity to the varicella zoster virus. The same is true if you have had chickenpox at some point during your life. There are certain groups of people who are at an increased risk for developing chickenpox. These increased risk individuals include the following people:

Adults

Women who are pregnant

Babies whose mother never had chickenpox or never received the varicella vaccine

People with eczema

Those who take steroids for other health issues

Those who have an impaired immune system

While chickenpox is a generally mild condition it can present problems for anyone in these high risk groups.

Gastric Bypass Surgery – Know the Risks

Many individuals battle issues with their weight for a good portion of their lives. Sometimes this can even get to a point where even diets and other conventional weight loss methods are ineffective. When this happens people like this often consider the option of various types of weight loss or bariatric surgery. One change that may be expected with a surgery such as this is that which occurs to the digestive system. Because of the decrease in how much food the stomach is able to accommodate weight loss becomes much easier.

Although there are several different types of surgeries which may be considered for weight loss purposes gastric bypass is the one which is most often used. One of the biggest reasons for this is the fact that the risks for gastric bypass surgery are much less than for other surgeries.

Any time a person considers the possibility of surgery there is a risk of potential complications. Gastric bypass is no different in that respect. It is essential that a person consider these risks before deciding on this option. By knowing as much about the potential risks of such a procedure a person will be more able to make an educated decision about whether this surgery is the best course of action for them. Some risks that are known to be related to this type of surgery include pneumonia, dumping syndrome, blood clots and in extreme cases even loss of life.

One serious problem which can occur after having gastric bypass surgery is with the staples leaking. Because these staples are located inside the stomach it can cause serious infections. This problem can generally be taken care of with the use of antibiotics however sometimes additional surgery may eventually become necessary to alleviate the problem.

If you are seriously considering the option of gastric bypass surgery there are a few questions you should first ask yourself. The first and probably most important question is, are you willing to put your body through such a major procedure? Second of course is, are you willing to take the necessary steps afterwards to maintain the changes which will occur? These changes often include changing your eating and exercise habits. Another question is, are you willing to accept the risks that are known to be associated with gastric bypass surgery?

For some people these questions are not seriously considered until after the surgery has been performed. The problem with this is that after the fact it is too late to decide the risks are too great. Before taking a step as serious as gastric bypass surgery you should do as much research as possible on the risks and possible outcomes that may be experienced from this surgery. For most people these risks are minimal and their level of obesity is so great that not having this surgery presents even more serious risks to their health. Even so it is still important to know all these risks so that they may be taken into consideration.

Symptoms and Treatments of Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder that can become very dangerous quite quickly. This is especially true if a person is unaware that they have this condition. When a person suffers from sleep apnea they often stop breathing for short periods of time throughout the night as they are sleeping. In some cases this causes the body as well as the brain not to receive adequate oxygen to sustain itself. When left untreated, this condition can easily and quickly become fatal.

Although there are two different categories of sleep apnea, obstructive sleep apnea or OSA is the one which is seen most often. This type of sleep apnea is often caused by the airways in the nose, throat or mouth becoming blocked or too narrow. This blockage or narrowing is often due the muscles of the throat becoming relaxed during sleep or the collapse of the soft tissue at the back of the throat.

A person who suffers from sleep apnea may stop breathing numerous times during their sleep. In the majority of cases a person does not even realize this is happening except by the presence of some of the symptoms of this condition. These symptoms often include excessive sleepiness during the day, waking up with the feeling that you are choking or gasping for air, loud snoring, sore or dry throat, morning headaches and feeling tired even after a full night’s sleep.

Central sleep apnea presents many of the same symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea. The difference between the two is that central sleep apnea is not caused by an obstruction of the airway. This type of sleep apnea is caused by the brain’s failure to send the proper signals to the body telling it to breathe. Central sleep apnea is much less common than obstructive sleep apnea.

Because the symptoms of both types of sleep apnea are the same it is sometimes difficult to determine which specific type of sleep apnea a person may be suffering from. In some cases both types of sleep apnea may be present in a person. This is often referred to as complex sleep apnea.

There are several different treatments which may be used to treat sleep apnea. Often which treatment is used depends on the severity of the condition as well as the person’s general health. One of the first treatments that is usually suggested if the sleep apnea is only a mild case may include changing the position in which you sleep, losing weight, avoiding alcohol or sedatives and quitting smoking. These are considered to be relatively simple and conservative methods of treating sleep apnea.

In some cases sleep apnea is much more severe and may require much more complex treatments. When sleep apnea is extreme and the airways are excessively blocked such as with large tonsils or extremely narrow air passages surgery may be considered. This method however is generally reserved as a last resort and only used in extreme cases.

Detecting and Treating Seasonal Allergies

When it comes to allergies there are many different types that may affect a person. How each person is affected by these allergies may also vary from one person to another. While some allergies may only be a bother during certain seasons others may be present year round. The ones which are triggered by things such as the blooming of certain flowers or trees or various other forms of pollen or mold which are found in the air are typically considered to be seasonal allergies. This is because these allergens are only present during specific seasons. The most commons seasons for dealing with seasonal allergies are spring and fall.

One of the most common triggers of seasonal allergies is pollen. This is produced by various different flowers when blooming and can be spread through the air. When the levels of pollen are high it causes a person to manifest the various symptoms of seasonal allergies. Various different trees may also present problems for allergy sufferers. Some of the most common types of trees that are known to produce allergy symptoms include oak, sycamore, elm, hickory, birch, cypress, walnut and maple. Tree and flower pollens are generally considered to be spring time allergens because this is typically when flowers and trees bloom.

Summer allergies are usually caused by various types of grass pollen. This is because late spring and summer are the times when grass grows the most. There are many different types of grass depending on the area in which you live. Grass allergies can be seasonal or year round especially if you come in direct contact such as when lying in the grass. This can often produce serious itching and in some cases hives.

Fall allergies are generally caused by various types of weeds such as ragweed, sagebrush and tumbleweed. In some areas however trees also produce pollen in the fall as well as in the spring.

In order to determine what specific pollens you may be allergic to it is generally necessary to consult with an allergist. This is a health care provider that specializes in treating and identifying various allergies. An allergist can perform various tests to determine what specific things you may be allergic to.

Once it has been determined what your specific allergies are your doctor will then be better able to determine what will be best to treat these allergies. This is important because in some cases some medications may not be suitable for all types of allergies. While seasonal allergies are often quite bothersome they are generally not life threatening except in very extreme cases. Knowing the correct medications to take to relieve or prevent allergy symptoms can go a long way in keeping you from spending those seasons in misery.

Even if your allergies don’t produce many symptoms it is still recommended to speak to your allergist. This is because over time these allergies may worsen and knowing about them is essential to proper treatment.