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Sexually transmitted diseases

In Health, Healthcare, Medicine on January 4, 2013 at 10:13 am

std

Sexually transmitted diseases are infections that are acquired and transmitted by sexual contact. Although virtually any infection may be transmitted during intimate contact, the term sexually transmitted disease is restricted to conditions that are largely dependent on sexual contact for their transmission and propagation in a population. The term venereal disease is literally synonymous with sexually transmitted disease but traditionally is associated with only five long-recognized diseases . Sexually transmitted diseases occasionally are acquired nonsexually, but in adults they are virtually never acquired by contact with contaminated intermediaries such as towels, toilet seats, or bathing facilities. However, some sexually transmitted infections are transmitted primarily by sexual contact in some settings and by nonsexual means in others

Sexually transmitted disease (STD) is a term used to describe more than 20 different infections that are transmitted through exchange of semen, blood, and other body fluids; or by direct contact with the affected body areas of people with STDs. Sexually transmitted diseases are also called venereal diseases.

Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are viral and bacterial infections passed from one person to another through sexual contact.

Adolescence is a time of opportunities and risk when many health behaviors are established. Although many of these behaviors are health-promoting, some are health-compromising, resulting in increasingly high rates of adolescent morbidity and mortality. For example, initiation of sexual intercourse and experimentation with alcohol and drugs are normative adolescent behaviors. However, these behaviors often result in negative health outcomes such as the acquisition of STDs. As a consequence of STDs, many adolescents experience serious health problems that often alter the course of their adult lives, including infertility, difficult pregnancy, genital and cervical cancer, neonatal transmission of infections, and AIDS (acquired immunodeficiency syndrome).

Some symptoms of STDs affect the genitals and reproductive organs:

  • A woman who has an STD may bleed when she is not menstruating or has abnormal vaginal discharge. Vaginal burning, itching, and odor are common, and she may experience pain in her pelvic area while having sex.
  • A discharge from the tip of the penis may be a sign that a man has an STD. Males may also have painful or burning sensations when they urinate.
  • There may be swelling of the lymph nodes near the groin area.
  • Both men and women may develop skin rashes, sores, bumps, or blisters near the mouth or genitals. Homosexual men frequently develop these symptoms in the area around the anus.

Prevention

Prevention of STDs involves primary and secondary approaches. Primary prevention aims to educate individuals about the advantages of discriminate and safe sex (prevention by the use of condoms), about the symptoms of the common sexually transmitted diseases, and about how to seek care for them. It is also important to point out that some conditions may cause no symptoms, so that regular check-ups are advised for those who often change their partners.

Secondary prevention aims to encourage people to seek care without delay once the symptoms of a disease are recognized, to stop sexual intercourse until medical advice has been sought, and to adhere to the advice and treatment given. The final aspect of control is the tracing of the sexual contacts of the infected patient, who may have infection without being aware of it.

STD

 

 

 

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Understanding Heartburn: Day 4

In Health, Healthcare, Medicine on September 2, 2012 at 8:00 am

 

What if GERD symptoms persist?
If your symptoms do not improve with lifestyle changes or medications, you may need additional tests.

• Barium swallow radiograph uses x rays to help spot abnormalities such as a hiatal hernia and other structural or anatomical problems of the esopha­gus. With this test, you drink a solu­tion and then x rays are taken. The test will not detect mild irritation, although strictures—narrowing of the esophagus—and ulcers can be observed.

• Upper endoscopy is more accurate than a barium swallow radiograph and may be performed in a hospital or a
doctor’s office. The doctor may spray your throat to numb it and then, after lightly sedating you, will slide a thin,
flexible plastic tube with a light and lens on the end called an endoscope down your throat. Acting as a tiny
camera, the endoscope allows the doc­tor to see the surface of the esophagus and search for abnormalities. If you
have had moderate to severe symp­toms and this procedure reveals injury to the esophagus, usually no other
tests are needed to confirm GERD. The doctor also may perform a biopsy. Tiny tweezers, called forceps, are
passed through the endoscope and allow the doctor to remove small pieces of tissue from your esophagus.
The tissue is then viewed with a micro­scope to look for damage caused by acid reflux and to rule out other prob­
lems if infection or abnormal growths are not found.

• pH monitoring examination involves the doctor either inserting a small tube into the esophagus or clipping a tiny
device to the esophagus that will stay there for 24 to 48 hours. While you go about your normal activities, the device measures when and how much acid comes up into your esophagus. This test can be useful if combined with a carefully completed diary— recording when, what, and amounts the person eats—which allows the doctor to see correlations between symptoms and reflux episodes. The procedure is sometimes helpful in detecting whether respiratory symp­
toms, including wheezing and cough­ing, are triggered by reflux.

A completely accurate diagnostic test for GERD does not exist, and tests have not consistently shown that acid exposure to the lower esophagus directly correlates with damage to the lining.

Surgery
Surgery is an option when medicine and lifestyle changes do not help to manage GERD symptoms. Surgery may also be
a reasonable alternative to a lifetime of drugs and discomfort.

 

Understanding Heartburn: Day 2

In Health, Healthcare, Medicine on August 31, 2012 at 8:00 am

What are the symptoms of GERD?
The main symptom of GERD in adults is frequent heartburn, also called acid indigestion—burning-type pain in the lower part of the mid-chest, behind the breast bone, and in the mid-abdomen. Most children under 12 years with GERD,
and some adults, have GERD without heartburn. Instead, they may experience a dry cough, asthma symptoms, or trouble swallowing.

What causes GERD?
The reason some people develop GERD is still unclear. However, research shows that in people with GERD, the LES relaxes while the rest of the esophagus is working. Anatomical abnormalities such as a hiatal hernia occurs when the upper part of the stomach and the LES move above the diaphragm, the muscle wall that separates the stomach from the chest. Normally, the people of any age and is most often a normal finding in otherwise healthy people diaphragm helps the LES keep acid from rising up into the esophagus. When a hiaover age 50. Most of the time, a hiatal hernia produces no symptoms.tal hernia is present, acid reflux can occur more easily. A hiatal hernia can occur in people of any age and is most often a normal finding in otherwise healthy people diaphragm helps the LES keep acid from rising up into the esophagus. When a hiaover age 50. Most of the time, a hiatal hernia produces no symptoms.

Other factors that may contribute to GERD include
• obesity
• pregnancy
• smoking
Common foods that can worsen reflux symptoms include
• citrus fruits
• chocolate
• drinks with caffeine or alcohol
• fatty and fried foods
• garlic and onions
• mint flavorings
• spicy foods
• tomato-based foods, like spaghetti sauce, salsa, chili, and pizza

Irritable Bowel Syndrome: A Nightmare which can be fixed by changing Lifestyle

In Health, Healthcare, Medicine on August 21, 2012 at 8:00 am

 

Did you know that if you often have stomach cramps, bloating, gas, diarrhea, or constipation, you could have irritable bowel syndrome?

What is irritable bowel syndrome?

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a functional disorder of the large bowel, meaning the bowel doesn’t work, or function, correctly. IBS is not a disease, but a group of symptoms.

What are the symptoms of IBS?

The main symptoms of IBS are

  • pain or discomfort in the abdomen, often relieved by a bowel movement
  • chronic diarrhea, constipation, or both

Other symptoms include

  • whitish mucus in the stool
  • a swollen or bloated abdomen
  • the feeling that you have not finished a bowel movement

Women with IBS often have more symptoms during their menstrual periods.

How will I know if I have IBS?

Your doctor may diagnose IBS based on your symptoms. No specific test for IBS exists, but your doctor may do some

What can I do about IBS?

IBS has no cure but you can take some steps to relieve symptoms. You might have to try a few different things to see what works best for you. Your doctor can help you find the right treatment plan, which may include

  • avoiding foods that can trigger symptoms, such as fatty foods, milk products, and carbonated drinks
  • eating foods with fiber
  • eating four or five small meals instead of three big meals
  • taking medicines that help relieve symptoms
  • reducing emotional stress

 

Lactose intolerance: A common suffering

In Health, Healthcare, Medicine on August 20, 2012 at 8:00 am

Did you know that if you don’t feel well after drinking milk or eating milk products, you may have lactose intolerance?

What is lactose intolerance?

Lactose intolerance means your body has trouble digesting, or breaking down, lactose. Lactose is the sugar found in milk and milk products. The small intestine—an organ in the digestive tract—needs lactase enzyme to break down lactose. With lactose intolerance, your body doesn’t make enough lactase enzyme to properly digest lactose.

How will I feel if I have lactose intolerance?

If you have lactose intolerance, you may not feel well after you have milk or milk products. You may also have stomach cramps, bloating, gas, diarrhea, or nausea.

Other illnesses can cause these same symptoms. Your health care provider will ask about your symptoms and perform tests to see if your problems are caused by lactose intolerance.

Who gets lactose intolerance?

Many people have lactose intolerance. Some people become lactose intolerant as children. In others, the problem starts when they are teenagers or adults. Asian Americans, African Americans, American Indians, Hispanics/Latinos, and people with southern European heritage are more likely to be lactose intolerant than people of northern European descent.

Eating, Diet, and Nutrition

You can change your diet to manage the symptoms of lactose intolerance. People differ as to how much milk and milk products they can eat or drink without having symptoms. Most people with lactose intolerance do not have to give up milk or milk products. You may be able to eat or drink small amounts—4 ounces or less—of milk or milk products without symptoms. Yogurt and hard cheeses, like cheddar and Swiss, are easier for some people with lactose intolerance to digest.

Over-the-counter products, such as tablets or liquid drops that contain lactase enzyme, can help you digest milk and milk products. You can also buy lactose-free and lactose-reduced milk and milk products.

Milk and milk products are the most common sources of calcium. Calcium is a mineral the body needs for strong bones and teeth. To absorb calcium, your body needs vitamin D. It’s hard to get enough calcium and vitamin D even if you eat and drink milk and milk products. Talk with your health care provider about how to get calcium and vitamin D in your diet and ask if you should also take calcium or vitamin D supplements.

How will I know if a food has lactose?

Learn to read food labels carefully. Look for milk and lactose in the list of ingredients. Also look for words such as whey, curds, milk by-products, dried milk, milk solids, and powdered milk. If any of these words are listed on a label, the product contains lactose.

Lactose is found in milk and milk products, such as

  • ice cream
  • cream
  • butter
  • cheese
  • cottage cheese
  • yogurt

Rarely, people with lactose intolerance are bothered by even small amounts of lactose. Lactose may be added to boxed, canned, frozen, packaged, and prepared foods such as

  • breads and other baked goods
  • cereals
  • breakfast and lunch meats
  • salad dressings
  • mixes for cakes, cookies, pancakes, and biscuits
  • frozen dinners and breakfast foods
  • instant potatoes and soups
  • snacks such as potato chips and corn chips
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