Practical Prevention of Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease caused by gradual wear and tear of joints. Though the exact cause of osteoarthritis is not determined but many factors may contribute to the development of this disease. They include age, sex, hereditary, nerve injury, muscle weakness, obesity or occupation. But there is something which you can do to diminish your risk of getting osteoarthritis.

Practical Prevention of Osteoarthritis:

Keep your weight down: Research suggests that obese people are at risk of osteoarthritis and that weight loss prevents or delays osteoarthritis from occurring. Obese people posses a significant risk of developing osteoarthritis by putting unnecessary strain on the joints. Study shows that people who loose 11 pounds cut their risk of osteoarthritis to half.

Get enough calcium and vitamins C and D: One of the best ways to avoid bone osteoarthritis is the proper intake of vitamins especially calcium and vitamin D. Calcium is the major component of bone, and is therefore crucial to maintain bone density whereas vitamin D helps in absorption of calcium.

Intake of sufficient amount of calcium in diet: Adult should have a daily intake of 1,000-1,500 mg per day through diet and this will reduce the chances of getting osteoarthritis.

Take precautions at work: Researchers have linked osteoarthritis with repetitive tasks and with jobs that involve kneeling or squatting, especially when lifting heavy objects.

Strengthen muscle and joints through exercise: Exercise can help reduce joint pain and stiffness. Light to moderate-intensity physical activity may prevent or delay the process of bone degeneration.

Avoids sports injury: Avoid sport injury by taking proper precaution while playing or doing exercise. Precautions that you should take while exercising include using proper equipment and protective gear; cross training or varying your activities; taking a break if something hurts or you feel tired; and getting prompt care for injuries.

An Appreciation of Louisa Lust – Teaching Naturopathy

Many times in a business it is a married couple who work together to produce stellar results. This was the case with Louisa Lust (1869-1925). The wife of celebrated naturopathy Benedict Lust she worked with him to open the American School of Naturopathy in New York.

Before the partnership Louisa already had a name in the nature cure world and used time honored traditions as:
o Hydrotherapy
o Vegetarian diet
o Air and light baths
o Rational life style

German born Louisa studied the nature cure methods of Rikli and Kuhne in London prior to moving to the United States. She established a practice in the USA but continued her studies at Columbia Institute, then in 1901 married Benedict Lust. Their 25 year partnership established Naturopathy as a medical force with lasting impact in the United States. As a cook she prepared tasty meals and wrote: Practical Naturopathic Vegetarian Cookbook in 1907. She tells us:
o A large part of food among Americans is composed of white flour, sugar, and butter. People who try to live on such stuff gradually starve to death
o We lengthen our life with a frugal diet
o We shorten our life by eating too much
o Feed the sick little so little digestive work is needed

Louisa was dedicated to bring out the attributes of a healthy home where light, air, cleanliness, and a good diet would keep a person healthy. She believed in a common sense approach to health that trusted “The Life Force Within”. That what people needed was:
o Freedom from fear
o Mastery of hygiene

Louisa made sure she knew the individual and correspond treatments to their circumstance and experience. Louisa believed there was no better treatment than hydrotherapy and the use of water. If an acute disease struck to use a steam bath, and every day take a cool bath. She believed that fever was the vital force trying to get rid of toxic materials and poison and not to stop it. She advised no solid food and the organs will cure the issue naturally. Louisa Lust spent her life in the pursuit of helping others help themselves. Her lessons are still valid today.

An Appreciation of Henry Lindlair, Early 20th Century Naturopath

In my search for answers to use alternative medicine in place of modern drugs and pharmacy I ran across the story of colorful naturopath Henry Lindlair (1862-1924). As a young man Lindlair accumulated a fortune. Although rich he was sick at 35. Diagnosed with diabetes and given just a few months to live he changed his lifestyle to nature cure. Ten years later he owned a successful drug free nature cure clinic in Chicago. Over the next 20 years became the leading scientific naturopath in America.

Lindlair’s story is common in the annals of nature cure. His cure was not found in drugs, but located in nature. His first touch was reading Louis Kuhne’s The New Science of Healing which introduced him to the concept that disease is caused by violating nature’s laws. After applying the Kuhns suggestion he eventually became cured of diabetes. The experience gave him the drive to embark on a lifelong journey into natural cures.

Before that Lindlair had believed that life, death, and disease were largely a matter of being in the wrong place and disease was caught by chance. He felt betrayed by a medical community that should have explained that as simple a thing as diet and that he was cured by what medical doctors called a “Quack.”

Lindlair believed that if he became a medical doctor he could correct the wrong thinking conveyed by the medical profession. He learned osteopathy and nutrition, then later received his medical license and started his Chicago practice. He consistently railed against the rich American diet and felt good blood did not need large quantities of fats, proteins, meats, and dairy products. He felt that vegetable salts were taxed with heavy foods that nutritional deficiencies would occur. He never became a fanatic about food but was careful about quantity, making vegetables the biggest portions on his plate.

Four core solutions were used in his sanatorium
o Rest and Relaxation
o Water, air, light, electricity
o Hydrotherapy of all sorts, cold, warm, hot
o Controlled diet

Besides those he used homeopathy and occasional herbs. Lindlair was an accomplished naturopath whose light went out too early when he paid no attention to himself. An infection in his toe led to blood poisoning killed him.

Medical Tourism Tips For Pleasant Health Care Abroad

Medical tourism is a booming industry and every year more and more medical tourists are visiting various destinations for receiving top quality treatment at affordable prices. As a medical tourist you need to do some research while selecting the country, hospital and doctor for your treatment. Also you need to make sure everything is planned well before you go abroad so at you have a pleasant medical trip and don’t have to face any complications in an unknown destination.

Below are some tips that can be helpful for your medical trip:

  1. Research – All experts would recommend you to research a lot before you travel abroad. Researching will help you in understanding the procedure, risks involved, time for stay, recovery time etc and at the same time also help you from getting victim of any scams etc.
  2. Always seek information about hospital accreditation, success rates, patient’s testimonials etc.
  3. Check for doctor’s information like education, experience and boar certifications.
  4. Consult if the treatment or procedure is safe.
  5. Get information about the climate and weather conditions at the medical tourism destination.
  6. Keep necessary contact information with you like relatives, friends, embassy, doctor etc.
  7. Take necessary vaccines if needed before leaving the country.
  8. Check is traveling abroad will be cost effective and also if it is safe to travel to the country.
  9. Better seek the services of a medical tourism company, they specialize in medical travel thing and can arrange quotes for you very quickly. Also as they work with various hospitals you can have multiple options to choose from and select the one that best suits you.

Electronic Medical Record (EMR) Pros and Cons

Within the last few years there as been an aggressive push on the part of government, professional organizations, and other authorities to institute a uniform EMR system. This includes generous subsidies allocated by recent legislation and mandatory legal requirements to occur in the next few years. As a practicing and academic physician with a masters degree in public health, I would like to briefly note some observations.

Intuitively, a uniform, easily accessible EMR seems like a very good idea. In fact, one of my major difficulties in practice occurs when a new patient arrives without copies of previous diagnostic studies or lists of medications. This is compounded in an incapacitated or elderly individual with many medical conditions and medications, and when there is a language barrier. Such patients may have great difficulty, or be incapable of, relaying this information to the new physician. To go online and immediately retrieve it would be very helpful indeed.

However, in these days of lower reimbursement and higher practice volumes, time spent imputing information may be time spent away from patient care. You may have experienced a visit where your doctor, using an EMR, has his eyes and hands on the computer much more than on you. I personally have accompanied relatives to physicians and emergency rooms where the doctor spent almost no time talking to, or examining the patient but instead sat in front of the computer, recording or retrieving information.

Also, these electronic records include templates where “check off” of existing information, rather than recording of original information is involved. This helps improve physician reimbursement by conforming with insurance company guidelines for level of service. It does little, however, to record the doctor’s thought processes or enhance the necessary medical information provided by this specific physician.

Don’t get me wrong. Good information is a good thing. But, it must be good for the patient and not just there to satisfy an insurance company. Also, it must contribute to, not detract from, the overall quality of care.

Medicine from Recommended Pharmacies

With prescription medicines, there are so many choices to choose from and it is not easy finding cheaper and effective alternatives. Does your Government pay for all your health cost, or are you uninsured and you have the burden of 100% of the cost for your family’s health care. If you have health care coverage, what percentage do you have to pay?

Once you decide what category you fall under, you need to decide which medicine is right for you. Trying to save money on your prescriptions may not be for you but for the vast majority of us who are not well off, we have to shop around for a cheaper source of quality prescriptions.

This brings us to the internet with even more questions. A recent Google search for the word “pharmacy” came up with over 29 million possibilities. So out of the 29 million WebPages. Which pharmacies have good quality prescriptions, which ones are fly-by night and which ones have good customer service? That is where an online pharmacy review site comes in.

A good pharmacy review site will first find quality online pharmacies. Do background checks on the medical pharmacies and contact them to see if they respond in a timely matter. Some good websites will go to the extent of ordering prescriptions from pharmacies to see if the right prescriptions arrive on time and as prescribed.

There are thousands of online pharmacies to choose from and an online pharmacy review site can help users to start choosing their prescriptions from recommended pharmacies. This makes it easier for online users and starts them in the right path. Not only can they find good pharmacies from such a review site, they can also find medicine that are competitively priced and within their budget range. How often do people take their friends’ recommendations in trying out Lose Weight programs and medicine anyway?

Don’t Be Afraid To Ask Questions About Your Health

If we fail to ask questions when we have an appointment with a medical professional, we may not be getting the full value from the visit. Asking direct, relevant questions of a doctor is not an imposition. It is our right and is also in the best interests of the doctor to provide all of the information we need.

Forgetting to ask questions during an office visit is a common occurrence. This can be a stressful and hectic time and being distracted is normal, especially if we are not feeling well. It is helpful to write down any questions that you may have before your appointment so that you do not forget to ask. You may also want to discuss these questions with a friend or family member. Another person may be able to add insight by seeing things more clearly than we can at the time.

Don’t assume that you are causing a problem by asking questions. Most doctors appreciate patients who ask good questions. Feelings of fear, embarrassment or inadequacy are not good reasons for failing to ask the about things you really want to know. If you don’t ask, your doctor may assume that you understand, or that you do not care to know more. He or she cannot guess what your concerns are.

As you know, television and magazines are saturated with advertising for various medications. Such conditions as high blood pressure, depression, arthritis, high cholesterol and even erectile dysfunction are being targeted by pharmaceutical companies with new medications. The information supporting these products encourages viewers and readers to “ask your doctor about (name of product).”

Essentially, these companies are putting pressure on doctors to prescribe their medications. But, in a way, the pharmaceutical companies have made it much easier to initiate a dialogue with your doctor. It is no longer unusual for patients to ask doctors about something they have read or heard about. Consequently, the dynamic between patient and doctor is changing. Doctors are becoming conditioned to hearing questions from patients and they are obliged to respond.

Finally, if you forget to ask a question or think of one later, call back and ask! Your doctor should prefer, if you do have health questions, that you get the proper answer rather that guess. Guessing could be hazardous to your health.

Getting Our Priorities in Order

He had bought one of those high-priced, high-performance European models – it was sleek and sexy – he loved it.

And boy did he take care of it.

– he washed the outside.

– he vacuumed the insides.

– he serviced it regularly;

– changed the air filter to assist in breathing.

– changed the oil filter.

– used nothing but top grade oil.

– filled it up at the pumps with high octane fuel.

He checked all the little things;

– air pressure to reduce rolling friction

– lubrication of all moving parts

– levels of all fluids – including the windshield washer fluid – he
really wanted to see where he was going at all times.

He was very proud of this, his most prized possession.

He knew he had a winner – especially when he received all those
envious glances while driving through the check-out lane at the
fast-food outlet.

She, had bought a cute, cuddly little designer dog – one that
would fit into the ultra modern apartment complex she had purchased.

Nothing was too good for it –

– it had it’s own bed, it’s own blankets – but it still slept in her bed.

– she groomed, clipped and pampered her pet.

– it ate only the best and choicest of dog foods.

It was;

– vaccinated,

– de-wormed,

– de-fleaed,

– de-ticked

– and if there wasn’t enough for weekly groceries, it wasn’t the dog
that went short.

And all her friends commented on how smart the pet was.

Yes, it’s sad but true – we take better care of ‘things’ than we do
ourselves.

Sterility in Medicine

We are lucky to live in this century, one where medicines have been developed to combat most ailments, where we can be sure that the medicines we have are safe and sterile when needed and if we need a surgery, that the tools and equipment needed is all safe, clean and germ free.

Throughout history, they didn’t give much thought to keeping things clean and sterile, but luckily today we know that it is used to promote health and to eliminate the risk of contamination. What does being sterile mean though? Well, sterility is defined as the complete absence of any viable microorganism whether on a surgical tool, on equipment or in medicines themselves.

There are a few different ways that sterility is achieved in the medical and pharmaceutical fields. The first is using steam. This technique was actually invented back in the 1880’s by a man called Charles Chamberland. He came up with the autoclave, a steam sterilizer that used water to create steam to clean surgical tools and kill bacteria between patients. Today we still use this technique to clean glassware and surgical instruments.

What about things that can’t withstand high temperatures? In the case of sensitive electronic components, plastics and cardboard that need to be sterilized, the technique is EtO or EO, and it uses Ethylene Oxide gas as the sanitizing agent.

Another way to sanitize things is by the use of dry heat. This is used for things like needles and metal instruments that can get very hot with no worry that they will disintegrate.

But what about medicines themselves? They can’t be steamed, but they can go through the process known as aseptic processing. This takes a sterile medicine and packages it in a sterile container using flash heating. It is a task that also requires the use of clean rooms, bacteria retaining filters and dry heat. By using this technique however, drugs can be imported and exported anywhere in the world without the need for refrigeration and will be sterile when they arrive at the patient.

Sterile medicines, equipment and tools all help to provide the best care possible to us when we are sick. We don’t have to worry about contamination as the risks for it is low if all temperatures, gases, humidity and pressure levels have been accurately monitored throughout the sterilization process to ensure validity and effectiveness. Medicine has come a long way and the results are safer and more reliable than ever before.

Aseptic Processing

If you go back in time, hygienic practices weren’t even heard of let alone carried out. Medicines were made primarily of plants and whatever else was on hand and even, during the Victorian period when pharmaceuticals became more main stream, they weren’t very worried about how sterile the compounds were.

Today of course, pharmaceuticals are big business and having a product delivered to a patient sterile and ready to go is the norm. We’re talking eye drops, ear drops, inject, infusion products and the like, all things that have to remain sterile until ready to use.

By definition, something that is sterile has the absence of any viable microorganism, and the specification is unchanging and independent of the manufacturing process of the drug in the first place. To make a sterile product then, means filling and sealing the product containers under high quality environmental conditions, with care and with the same practices in place day after day.

When you are talking foods, beverages and medicines, keeping them sterile is a process called aseptic processing. This means that the sterile product is packaged in such a way as to keep its sterile rating. It is accomplished by flash heating which uses less energy than other techniques while (in the case of food) retains more nutrients. When you are talking pharmaceuticals, the ante is upped and the procedure also includes the use of clean rooms, bacteria retaining filters, and either dry or steam heat.

Some examples of food and drinks being in a sterile container include tetra juice boxes and drink pouches, but for medicines, they are stored in plastic or glass containers as these materials form a tight seal against microbiological organisms, contaminants, and degradation of the substance being carried. Using aseptic processing means you no longer need refrigeration and it makes worldwide import and export safe and economical.

Aseptic containers range in size from tiny ones that hold just a few ounces of medicine to ones that can hold eight million gallons in a tank on an ocean liner. Companies that package these medicines and the like can then send their product all over the world, knowing that once it reaches its destination, it is still a viable, sterilized product and will remain that way until it is used for a patient.

The next time you have a prescription for eye drops or have medicines administered by injection or drip, you can be sure those medicines are sterile, all thanks for aseptic processing.