A precise diagnosis for appendicitis has a high degree of difficulty, due to the resemblance of appendicitis’s symptoms to those indicating other inflammations. Thus, a frequent method is to keep under observation the patients with appendicitis suspicion for a temporal interval, to see their evolution. The problem may disappear, or develop to classic appendicitis or other disease.
It is the duty of the surgeon to eliminate the suspicion for any other condition similarly to appendicitis or that has similar symptoms. Such conditions are:
* – Meckel’s diverticulitis represents little excrescences of the small intestine which are usually found in the lower right abdomen right next to the appendix. Same as the appendix, the diverticulum can rupture or inflame and it is necessary to take it out by surgical intervention.
* – Pelvic inflammatory disease. Found closely to the appendix, the ovary and the right fallopian tube may be affected by sexually transmitted affections of infectious nature, but in most of the cases medication using antibiotics can successfully replace surgery.
* – Right upper abdomen conditions of inflammatory nature. Diseases like duodenal ulcer, gallbladder disease or affections of the liver may generate fluids drain from upper to lower right abdomen and cause a very similar inflammation to that of the appendix.
* – Right – side diverticulitis. By exception from the common situation of the left sided diverticulitis of the colon, there can also appear on the right side and, when rupturing, have a strong similarity to appendicitis.
* – Affections of the right kidney such as abscess which, due to the close position of the kidney to the appendix may simulate appendicitis.
Because many conditions of the abdomen share the same symptoms, the causes are in more than one case difficult to determine, but the good thing is that only few abdominal affections are so serious to require more than medication at home. So, the nature of pain is more likely to be determined by severity, location or other aspects.
Causes of Bursitis
Bursitis is the inflammation of one or more bursae (small sacs) of synovial fluid in the body. The bursae rest at the points where internal functionaries, such as muscles and tendons, slide across bone. Healthy bursae create a smooth, almost frictionless functional gliding surface making normal movement painless. When bursitis occurs, however, movement relying upon the inflamed bursa becomes difficult and painful. Moreover, movement of tendons and muscles over the inflamed bursa aggravates its inflammation, perpetuating the problem.
The number varies, but most people have about 160 bursae throughout the body. Bursae are lined with special cells called synovial cells, which secrete a fluid rich in collagen and proteins. This synovial fluid acts as a lubricant when parts of the body move. When this fluid becomes infected by bacteria or irritated because of too much movement, the painful condition known as bursitis results.
What causes bursitis?
Bursitis usually results from a repetitive movement or due to prolonged and excessive pressure. Patients who rest on their elbows for long periods or those who bend their elbows frequently and repetitively (for example, a custodian using a vacuum for hours at a time) can develop elbow bursitis, also called olecranon bursitis. Similarly in other parts of the body, repetitive use or frequent pressure can irritate a bursa and cause inflammation.
Predisposing factors include diabetes, alcoholism, steroid therapy, uremia, trauma, and skin disease. A history of noninfectious inflammation of the bursa also increases the risk of septic bursitis.
Shoulder. Bursitis of the shoulder often results from injury to the rotator cuff, the muscles and tendons that connect your upper arm bone to your shoulder blade. Causes of the injury may include falling, lifting and repetitive overhead arm activities. Sometimes it’s hard to distinguish between the pain caused by bursitis and that caused by a rotator cuff injury.
Signs and symptoms
An area that feels swollen or warm to the touch
Occasional skin redness in the area of the inflamed bursa
Pain and tenderness are common symptoms. If the affected joint is close to the skin, as with the shoulder, knee, elbow, or Achilles tendon, swelling and redness are seen and the area may feel warm to the touch. The bursae around the hip joint are deeper, and swelling is not obvious.
How Is Bursitis Treated?
Your doctor can also prescribe medications to reduce the inflammation. Corticosteroids, also known as “steroids,” are often used because they work quickly to decrease the inflammation and pain. Steroids are also one of the safest treatment methods and can be injected directly at the site of injury. Unfortunately, 30% of people may not get complete relief from one injection and 2% of people may even get worse.
Sometimes, your doctor may recommend physical therapy or exercises to strengthen the muscles in the area. Additionally, your doctor may inject a corticosteroid drug into the bursa to relieve inflammation. This treatment generally brings immediate relief and, in many cases, one injection is all you’ll need.Anti-inflammatory medications, such as aspirin or over-the-counter nonsteroidal drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen, naproxen, or indomethacin can often be helpful. If the cause of the bursitis is bacterial, antibiotics will be administered.
Have you ever noticed things about your body that are annoying, weird, smelly, or downright embarrassing? If so, you’re not alone. We all experience the often unsightly and sometimes unseemly signs and signals our bodies send us about our state of health. Ugly growths may pop up on our eyelids, or skin tags under our breasts. Our nails may be yellow or our partners may complain that we smell like ammonia.
Fortunately, many of these “body signs” are harmless and can be ignored or treated cosmetically. But sometimes what may seem like a cosmetic concern is more than meets the eye. The ugly growths on your eyelids may be xantelasmas, tiny deposits of cholesterol forewarning you that you may have high cholesterol and be at risk for heart disease. Unsightly skin tags – a common sign of aging – may signal diabetes. Yellowed nails may be nicotine stains, but they can also be warning signs of a lung or liver disorder. And while the ammonia-like odor you give off may mean you should hire a cleaning service, it can also mean that you’re eating too much protein, or you have Helicobacter pyelori bacteria, the bug that causes stomach ulcers.
Body signs can be seen, heard, tasted, felt, or smelled by you or others. Before modern diagnostic techniques, doctors had to rely on what their own and their patient’s five senses revealed to them. They listened to patients’ hearts, felt their pulses, looked at their tongues, eye-balled their eyes, inspected their hair, skin, and nails, smelled their smells, studied their stools, and sniffed or sometimes even tasted their urine. Doctors today, even though they may use sophisticated diagnostic equipment at their disposal, still apply these sensible techniques ? with the possible exception of tasting urine.
You, too, can learn to use your senses to detect warning signs of serious conditions and get medical help before they become full-blown diseases. You can:
Look at your hair, eyes, tongue, skin and nails.
Listen to your voice and stomach sounds
Smell your body wastes
Taste your mouth and saliva
Touch your hair, skin, nails
Going from head to toe, here are some warning signs you may detect using your five senses. And keep in mind that any change in any of your senses can itself be a warning sign that something is out of kilter.
When your hair feels more dry and brittle than usual, you may be over-processing it. Or, dry hair may signal an under-active thyroid or nutritional deficiency.
If your hair looks like it’s thinning, and you’re a woman, you may have female-pattern baldness, which often runs in families. But it can also be a sign of an over-active thyroid or an early warning sign of diabetes.
Hearing the sound of your heart beating inside your ears is actually normal, especially when lying down. But if you hear your heart beat or a throbbing sound in only one ear, it may be a warning sign of a heart murmur, high blood pressure, or other vascular disorders.
When normal noises sound louder than usual, it may be a drug side effect or a sign that you’ve been drinking too many diet sodas that contain aspartame. Super sensitivity to sound may also be telling you that you have a magnesium deficiency, or an autoimmune or other serious disease.
Seeing floaters, those spots or flecks that appear floating across your field of vision, is pretty common. But if you notice a sudden increase of floaters, you may have a retinal tear or even detachment (especially if you see flashing lights with the floaters), which requires immediate medical attention.
Eyes that feel dry all the time, may be caused by low humidity, or be a drug side effect. Chronic dry eyes can also be a warning sign of some autoimmune diseases including rheumatoid arthritis, hyperthyroidism, and lupus.
While a nose that frequently looks red can be a tell-tale sign of excessive drinking, it can also be a red flag for the skin condition, rosacea. Interestingly, alcohol can trigger or worsen this condition.
If your sense of smell is not as keen as it used to be, it may be due to an injury to your nose, a normal sign of aging, or a sign of any number of disorders including zinc deficiency, nasal polyps, diabetes, hypothyroidism, and multiple sclerosis. It can also be very early warning sign of Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s disease.
A terrible taste in your mouth that won’t wash away with mouthwash can be a side effect of such medications as antibiotics, antidepressants, antihypertensives, as well as some vitamins supplements. It can also be a sign of gum disease, a viral infection, gastrointestinal disorder, Bell’s palsy, or burning mouth syndrome, a rare condition that primarily affects menopausal women.
A healthy tongue is covered with tiny bumps called papillae. If you tongue looks or feels very smooth and glassy, it may be telling you that you’re deficient in certain nutrients such as folic acid, vitamin B12, or iron. A smooth, red tongue may signal pernicious anemia or malabsorption syndrome, a condition in which the body cannot adequately absorb nutrients.
Hearing your stomach rumbling a lot may merely be the result of excess gas from a high-fiber diet or a diet containing too many carbohydrates, carbonated drinks, or artificial sweeteners. But excess gas may also signal lactose intolerance, food or drug allergies, or any number of gastrointestinal disorders.
If your arms or legs frequently feel numb and tingly, it may be the result of a pinched nerve, or an important warning sign of several serious conditions such as adrenal disorder, a circulatory problem (peripheral arterial disease), or a nerve disorder (peripheral neuropathy).
YOUR BODY WASTES
Whatever you eat can affect the odor (and color) of your urine. But urine that often smells sweet can be an important warning sign of undiagnosed or uncontrolled diabetes.
What you eat can also affect the color (and sometimes the odor) of your stools. If your stools look very pale, it may be from eating a lot of rice, potatoes, and other white-colored foods. Medicine containing calcium can also cause pale stools. But persistently pale stools can signal a blockage of the bile ducts, which can be caused by tumors or liver diseases including hepatitis, cirrhosis, or liver cancer.
YOUR SKIN & NAILS
If you feel a single, rough, or scaly patch of skin somewhere on your body -especially on your arm, leg, chest or other sun-exposed area – it may just be a scar. But you may have a pre-cancerous condition called solar (or actinic) keratosis.
If you see dark horizontal streaks that look like (but aren’t) splinters under your finger or toenails, they may be splinter hemorrhages, a sign of trichinosis, a parasitic disease caused by eating undercooked pork or wild game. They can also be warning signs of psoriasis, peptic ulcers, kidney disease, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, blood-clotting diseases, and endocarditis, an infection of the heart.
You can see that checking your body periodically from head to toe can sometimes uncover important and often-missed warning signs of serious diseases. Keeping track of your body signs can be an important preventive health measure. It will also help you to actively participate in your health care and the diagnostic process as a partner with your doctor. And don’t forget to check out those near and dear to you; you may be able to pick up things that they themselves are unaware of.
If you do notice a disturbing body sign on either you or your loved ones – no matter how trivial or embarrassing – mention it to a doctor. Discussing annoying, bizarre, or embarrassing signs with a doctor will make it much easier to get a quick, accurate diagnosis when something is wrong, enabling you to get prompt treatment. It can also help you rule out serious conditions when all is well. Indeed, many of the body signs that may concern you will turn out to be perfectly normal and benign, or of no particular consequences, thus saving you further medical expense, time, and anxiety.
Joan Liebmann-Smith, Ph.D., is a medical sociologist and award-winning medical writer. Her articles have appeared in American Health, Ms., Newsweek, Redbook, Self, and Vogue, and she has appeared on numerous television talk shows, including The Oprah Winfrey Show and The Today Show. She has a daughter, Rebecca, a cat, Fazelnut, and lives with her husband, Richard — also a writer — in New York City.
Jacqueline Nardi Egan is a medical journalist who specializes in developing and writing educational programs with and for physicians, allied health professionals, patients, and consumers. She is also a former medical editor of Family Health magazine. She has a daughter, Elizabeth, two dogs, Coco and Abby, and divides her time between Darien, Connecticut, and Sag Harbor, New York.
Psychosis symptoms involve hallucinations, delusions, paranoia, mania and depression along with others. There are nine all together that combine to form psychosis including changes in behavior and personality; often those suffering are not aware that there have been any changes.
In order to understand the psychosis symptoms you will have to know what each one is. You will want to rule out other causes for the symptoms before jumping to the conclusion that someone is suffering from a form of psychosis since there are other reasons for the majority of the symptoms associated with psychosis.
Hallucinations can come from a severely high fever or an illness that leads to a fever. These are more common in children and the elderly. Hallucinations can affect the vision, hearing and taste. When hallucinations persist and turn to delusion it can indicate schizophrenia or another disorder. They may hear voices that are not real, see things or taste things that are not the way they should be when having hallucinations. You have to make sure these are true hallucinations and not merely nightmares or dementia.
Delusions are different from hallucinations. These are difficult to determine as personal beliefs will vary from one person to the other. Hallucinations and paranoia can cause one to hallucinate.
Another psychosis symptom is paranoia. This is a form of delusions where the beliefs though firm are not realistic. When a person thinks that someone is going to do them harm in some way with no basis for it they are suffering from delusions. Some people have beliefs that are considered to be paranoid as part of normal behavior.
Mania is yet another of the psychosis symptoms and is far more than simply being in a good mood or being euphoric. When one is in the manic state they are often frantic and overly excited. They have a tendency to appear hyperactive. The thoughts and speech of a person in a manic state are often hard to understand as they are running into each other and appear jumbled together to those around them. Mania often cycles to depression.
Depression is another psychosis symptom that would be more complicated. There are various types of depression such as postpartum, and mental that can even have suicidal tendencies that go with them and cause a person to do harm to them. There are a number of things that can cause a person to feel sad and sadness alone is not a reason to assume depression.
Fatigue and an inability to sleep can cause a feeling of sadness from the exaction they cause. If you have a chronic illness you can experience depression as well. If you have true depression then you have a problem and need to seek help with your symptoms.
There are also emotional symptoms involved with psychosis. The causes of the emotional symptoms will vary a great deal and the amount of emotions associated with them will vary from person to person. Anxiety, dementia, depression and schizophrenia can all lead to emotional symptoms associated with psychosis.
Changes in personality are also part of psychosis symptoms. This is when a persons overall behavior and personality changes. There are lots of reasons that personalities change among them stress, anxiety, depression and mood disorders. The sudden increase in stress in a person’s life can cause them to become irritable and anxious.
There are behavioral symptoms as part of the psychosis symptoms as well. The psychosis symptoms that fall under behavioral symptoms fall under a number of types. The changes in personality, becoming confused, and being aggressive are all a part of changes in a person’s behavior. They may also have anxiety that can lead to fear. Obsessions can develop and they may become rather secretive.
Those that are experiencing these symptoms are not even aware that they are experiencing them. While there are individual symptoms of psychosis that can be seen by those around the one that is experiencing them they have to combine in one form or another to be considered as psychosis.
What is Fibromyalgia
Fibromyalgia (FM) is a human disorder classified by the presence of chronic widespread pain and tactile allodynia. While the criteria for such an entity have not yet been thoroughly developed, the recognition that fibromyalgia involves more than just pain has led to the frequent use of the term “fibromyalgia syndrome”. It is not contagious, and recent studies suggest that people with fibromyalgia may be genetically predisposed. The disorder is not directly life-threatening.
Do you have pain from head to toe? Are you tossing and turning throughout the night, unable to sleep? Do you wake up to pain and a foggy brain in the morning? These are common symptoms experienced by fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) and chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) patients.The most common sites of pain include the neck, back, shoulders, pelvic girdle, and hands, but any body part can be affected. Fibromyalgia patients experience a range of symptoms of varying intensities that wax and wane over time.
Signs and symptoms
Widespread pain. Fibromyalgia is characterized by pain in specific areas of your body when pressure is applied, including the back of your head, upper back and neck, upper chest, elbows, hips and knees. The pain generally persists for months at a time and is often accompanied by stiffnessYou may have some degree of constant pain, but the pain may get worse in response to activity, stress, weather changes and other factors. You may have a deep ache or a burning pain. You may have muscle tightening or spasms. Many people have migratory pain (pain that moves around the body).
Risk Factors of Fibromyalgia
One study reported that 28% of the children of mothers with fibromyalgia also develop the disorder. Offspring who developed fibromyalgia were no more likely to have psychological disorders than those who did not.
Primary fibromyalgia is the most common type. Many experts believe that fibromyalgia is not a disease but rather a chronic pain condition brought on by several abnormal body responses to stress. Physical injuries, emotional trauma, or viral infections such as Epstein-Barr may be triggers of the disorder, but none have proven to be a cause of primary fibromyalgia.It is believed that individuals with FM may have low levels of certain chemicals in the brain such as serotonin and norepinephrine. Low levels of these brain chemicals can cause depression and contribute to the pain and fatigue experienced in FM.
How is it treated?
Analgesics or “pain relievers” interact with receptors in the body to stop the sensation of pain from various sources. Analgesic drugs vary in strength and addiction potential from over-the-counter Tylenol to stronger prescription medications such as propoxyphene/acetaminophen (Darvocet) and tramadol (Ultram).
Lyrica: This is the first drug approved by the FDA specifically for the treatment of fibromyalgia. While this is a step forward, it is no cure. Lyrica has been shown to cut pain levels in half, but only in 30% of the people who took it.
Exercise. The emphasis is often on muscle conditioning and programs to improve aerobic fitness (such as swimming, cycling, walking and stationary cross-country ski machines) as well as physical therapy. Patients should be told that exercise is safe and effective. After an initial training period, the exercise regimen chosen should be done daily for 30 to 40 minutes.
Widely used diagnostic criteria published by the American College of Rheumatologists establish that a person has fibromyalgia if he or she has had widespread pain for at –
Black Toenails can be both painful and unsightly, and their causes, symptoms and treatment are often subject to much confusion. Here is some practical advice that will assist you in appropriate management.
Black Toenails (otherwise known as subungual hematoma) are caused by an injury to the toenail. Common examples are stubbing the toe against a hard object or dropping something heavy on it. Athletes, in particular are prone to this sort of injury, especial runners. In particular, this sort of toenail injury can occur if their shoes are too short or by running downhill, thus forcing the toes to repeatedly jam up against the inside of the shoe.
The black colour is actually caused by blood pooling under the injured nail, pressure will subsequently ensue and pain is frequently experienced. However, most times Black toenails are not painful, just unsightly.
So what can be done – well, foot specialists recommend that a procedure that you can perform at home to release the pooled blood and therefore relieve the pressure under the toenail.
The toenail can usually be saved if the blood is drained. First, clean the foot thoroughly, dry and swab the affected toe with alcohol. Next, heat the end of a thoroughly cleaned needle, with a match until it is red hot. Now, gently pierce your toenail. The heat from the sharp object melts the nail and allows the blood to flow out from beneath it. Remember to bath and disinfect the foot afterwards.
Never perform this type of self-treatment if you have circulatory problems or are diabetic. Equally, if squeamish or just unsure, then see a doctor for expert intervention.
In the end prevention is always better than cure so try not to drop things on your toes or run into obstacles! Remember also to buy proper fitting shoes. This should include room to wiggle your toes and allows a half inch of space between your toes and the end of your shoes
Despite the fact that the last decades brought a significant decrease of the mortality rate of lupus, this disease is in its nature a real menace for the patient’s life. This auto immune, chronic disorder severely affects the people that have it. From the about 2 millions Americans with lupus, 90 % are women aging between 18 and 30. The most predisposed to systemic lupus erythematosus seem to be Hispanic, Asian and black American women and the symptoms as well as the risks are much more severe in their cases. This type of lupus is often encountered in old people, small children and even babies.
In absence of a certitude regarding the causes of SLE, modern medicine analyzed the most important categories of factors related to the apparition of lupus: genetic factors, hormonal factors (estrogen is considered to play a role in the apparition of the disease) and the environmental factors (long – term use of antibiotics).
SLE is generated by the abnormal actions of the immune system and may cause temporary or permanent damages to many body areas including internal organs, such as the lungs, the cardiovascular system, the skin, the kidneys, the gastrointestinal tract, the nervous system and the brain and the musculoskeletal system. The auto immune character of the disease is given by the fact that the antibodies produced by the immune system damage both healthy cells and the DNA.
Because SLE often triggers heart, kidney or lung disorders, the treatment for every such consequence should be included in that for lupus. In the treatment for SLE, the attention is directed towards minimizing the casualties generated by the immune system’s malfunction which makes the prescription of immunosuppressive medicines very frequent; despite their side effects, corticosteroids are commonly used to control systemic lupus erythematosus. Azathioprine (imuran) and cyclophosphamide (cytoxan) are only prescribed in extreme situations because they have very dangerous side effects.
SLE is a chronic disease which explains the alternation of flares and remission periods. The difficult to predict nature of this disorder makes extremely necessary the continuous monitoring of the patients – including those in the remission phase – and repeated physical exams; the patients may be affected by the long term use immunosuppressants which makes them vulnerable to possible infections. In case you have SLE, you should be more careful and cautious than a healthy person, because your immune system is out of range and you are vulnerable to all kinds of disorders that your body is not able to fight without treatment.
With auto immune diseases, the body’s cells, which are healthy, are attacked by the immune system’s antibodies. This is also the case of systemic lupus erythematosus, a disease that also exposes the affected people to other severe health problems generated by the malfunction of the immune system. Musculoskeletal disorders, like arthritis or osteoporosis; heart, liver, kidney and lung conditions; affections of the nervous system and those of the skin, such as lupus rash, are much more severe and dangerous for patients with lupus than for healthy people.
Systemic lupus erythematosus has a chameleonic nature, and its gallery of possible symptoms is enormous and difficult to identify, because most of them are not specific. This is what makes this disease so hard to diagnose. The symptoms themselves generate possible errors of diagnosis and the correct one cannot be achieved only by means of the patient’s declarations. It takes more than that and the response leads to the results of laboratory analyses. Once the diagnosis is confirmed, the adequate treatment will be immediately prescribed, according to the patient’s particular case.
It is necessary for the treatment to cover the unpredictable nature of the disease. SLE is a continuous alternation of relapsing and remission periods, and the treatment’s goal is to make the remission periods last for as long as possible. The next step is the improvement of the SLE’s symptoms. This disease doesn’t go away but it may be prevented from causing more damage to the person it affects and this can only be achieved with proper treatment. The fact that lupus is a strongly chronic disorder implies that the medication must be permanently administered.
The early phases of SLE, in which the patients don’t experience severe symptoms, determine the treatment to direct its power to the prevention of the complications that come with this disease. In case of a violent form of lupus, the treatment’s attention turns to the blockage of the immune system’s attacks on the organism.
The usually prescribed treatments for systemic lupus erythematosus are corticosteroids, antimalarials, NSAIDs and cytotoxic medicines. When the blockage of malign antibodies production is necessary, biologic medications are used. Very frequently used are also analgesics and sedatives. In the particularly severe cases, the treatment for lupus may also involve powerful antibiotics.
Antimalarials are used in order to diminish the inflammations and the lesions on the skin generated by the disease and have good results for systemic lupus erythematosus as well as for discoid lupus erythematosus.
Corticosteroids are frequently used to control lupus by controlling the activity of the immune system in order to minimize the damages produced by its malfunction. They are extremely powerful drugs.
Cytotoxic medicines have strong effects and are only given in severe lupus commonly in association with corticosteroids. They are used to block the formation of the nocive antibodies.
NSAIDs have as main goal to decrease the inflammation and the rigidity of the articulations and to relieve the muscular pain.
This form of lupus mostly affects women from 18 to 50 years. The cases of men suffering from discoid lupus erythematosus are very rare. The racial factor seems to be decisive: the majority of patients are black American women and the symptoms are much more severe in their case. We cannot be certain about the real causes of this disease but there are several risk factors like the hormonal factors (such as estrogen excess), genetic factors and environmental factors (antibiotic long term treatment). The genetic factors have a particularly increased influence on the apparition of discoid lupus erythematosus compared to the other lupus forms.
Discoid lupus erythematosus appears under the form of large size lesions with circular aspect. Like all types of lupus, it also has an auto immune character: the immune system doesn’t protect the body from the viruses or bacteria but attacks its healthy tissues, which causes skin lesions. Long term solar exposure significantly worsens discoid lupus. The neck, face, arms and scalp are the most affected areas in which the lesions appear. But it is not compulsory for them to be the only parts: lesions may also appear on the back, legs or chest, which suggests the evolution into systemic lupus erythematosus.
Systemic lupus erythematosus – unlike discoid lupus erythematosus that only affects the skin – can generate a series of severe disorders: tuberculosis, cardiovascular diseases, gastrointestinal problems, pneumonia, musculoskeletal or nervous system problems.
The diagnosis of discoid lupus erythematosus is only given after previous physical exams, analysis performed in laboratory on skin samples and complicated blood tests. The adequate medication will be given once the diagnosis is confirmed by the test results. Contemporary medicine doesn’t have yet a cure for this condition but it may be kept under control and its signs – improved. But in order to have the best possible treatment result and to avoid the worsening of the lesion and a permanent scar formation, a patient with this condition must absolutely stay away from solar light.
The skin lesions that appear in the first phases of discoid lupus erythematosus are circular and reddish, with prominent borders. The next stages cause the scales and crusts on the skin’s surface. In case it affected the scalp, the hair is lost; this may be temporary or permanent. The most at risk category is the black American population because they have more chances to develop skin cancer than others. The proper medication, doubled by the protection against sunlight will keep the disease controlled and an obvious improvement of the symptoms will be noticed.
Lupus represents a real menace for the life of the affected persons. It has chronic and autoimmune character. The body’s healthy cells and the very genetic material are under attack because of the malfunction of the immune system. The consequences are severe and so are the damages produced on the internal organs. Systemic lupus erythematosus is only one disease from the large variety produced by this organic chaos. This type of lupus is very frequent and it affects 2 millions Americans; most of them are dealing with serious forms.
Despite the remarkable progress registered in modern medicine, a treatment to cure lupus completely was not found. But there are medicines able to prevent the evolution of the disorder and to keep symptoms controlled. SLE is a very unpredictable disease with multiple remissions and relapses. Even if there are times in which the symptoms back off, these are usually followed by violent and varied return of the symptoms. These fluctuations are determined by the chronic character of the disease. The alternations of remission and recurrences require permanent treatment and modifications of the doses.
This disease has a different, almost individual character for every case. Both the symptoms and the degree of severity vary widely from one patient to another. In the early phase, lupus presents flu – like symptoms: weakness of the body, muscular and articular pain, loss of appetite, low fever, fatigue or headache. These symptoms, that do not particularly belong to lupus evolve after a few months into oral and nasal lesions, sunlight – amplified skin rashes, inflammation of the articulations, permanent muscular pain, significant weight fluctuation, painful breathing and loss of hair. Additional symptoms are detected by analysis performed in laboratory: the presence of malign anti – DNA antibodies, antinuclear antibodies inside the blood and abnormalities in the number of the blood cells.
In case the nervous system is affected, the following symptoms appear: incapacity to focus, faints, mental confusion, seizures and possible development of mania, paranoia or depression.
In case the cardiovascular system is affected new symptoms indicating lupus show up: high pulse rate, hypertension, hyperactivity of the heart. This can lead to severe heart problems.
Due to the large variety of symptoms and to their unpredictable intensity, which gives the disease an individual character, individualized treatment has also been developed. Each person with lupus receives the medications that suite his/her case’s symptoms. A great influence on the treatment is that of the stage in which it was discovered; the best treatment results are obtained in the cases that are identified in early stages. Untreated and uncontrolled lupus has extremely damaging effects on the patient’s health.