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For people who suffer from various psychiatric and neurological conditions, brain stimulation has become an increasingly important treatment option in the recent decades.

Deep Brain Stimulation

Deep Brain Stimulation

Brain simulation techniques can be divided into two broad categories, invasive and noninvasive. Both of them work by targeting specific sites in the brain to adjust the overall brain activity. Among the most well-known invasive techniques is the deep brain stimulation (DBS) which requires a brain surgery and is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This process is typically used for treated Parkinson's disease and this process requires an electrode to be inserted in the brain. Among the noninvasive techniques is the transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) which can be administered from outside the head. This treatment is currently approved for treating depression.

Brain stimulation has resulted in dramatic benefits to patients with such disorders, which has motivated researchers to test if it can be useful in treated patients suffering from other diseases. The problem is that doctors have been unable to pinpoint which are the ideal sites to administer simulation in a given patient for a given condition.

A new study led by investigators at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) suggest that brain networks which consists of the interconnected pathways that link brain circuits to one another can assist in selection of ideal spot for brain stimulation therapies.

Michael D. Fox, MD, PhD, First author of the study, an investigator in the Berenson-Allen Center for Noninvasive Brain Stimulation and in the Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorders Center at BIDMC remarked that although different types of brain stimulation are currently applied in different locations, it has been found that the targets used to treat the same disease are nodes in the same connected brain network. This can have a direct implication on how brain stimulations are administered to treat diseases.

For example, in order use brain stimulation to treat Parkinson’s disease or tremor an electrode need to be inserted deep in the brain. Getting the same effect with noninvasive stimulation is difficult, as the spot is deep in the brain. However, by looking at the brain’s network connectivity, sites can be identified on the surface of the brain that is connected with the deep spot site. Hence, that deep spot can also be stimulated noninvasively.

For this study Fox's team conducted a large-scale literature search to find out all neurological and psychiatric diseases where brain stimulation via both invasive and non-invasive techniques had shown improvement. The search found 14 such conditions namely addiction, Alzheimer’s disease, anorexia, depression, dystonia, epilepsy, essential tremor, gait dysfunction, Huntington’s disease, minimally conscious state, obsessive compulsive disorder, pain, Parkinson disease and Tourette syndrome. In the next step, they listed the stimulation sites, both deep in the brain or on the surface of the brain that was found to have been effective for the treatment of each of the 14 diseases.

In order to test the hypothesis that the various stimulation sites in the brain are different spots within the same brain network, Fox's team used a data base of functional MRI images and a technique that enabled them to see correlations in spontaneous brain activity. These correlations helped the investigators in creating a map of connections from deep brain stimulation sites to the surface of the brain. When this map was compared to sites for noninvasive brain stimulation on the brain surface, the two matched.

The study suggest that understanding the brain networks can help in understanding why brain stimulation works and how these therapies can be improved by identifying the best place to stimulate the brain for a given patient suffering from a given disease. These findings also suggest that resting-state functional connectivity can be useful for translating therapy between treatment modalities, optimizing treatment and identifying new stimulation targets.

References

http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2014-09/bidm-srn092514.php

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/09/140929153935.htm

Complementary Reading

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In case of mesothelioma cases, eating the right foods at the right amounts is very critical for maintenance of the patient. Since the disease can take away vitality from the patient in such mesothelioma cases, it is important to ensure that he gets the necessary energy from his diet. Mesothelioma diet and nutritional therapy can help mesothelioma patients to recover their normal physical activities and at the same time fight the disease better.

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In case of mesothelioma cases, diet and nutritional therapy becomes more important because some dietary habits can completely eliminate the treatment outcomes. It is also possible to prevent cancer and its re-occurrence with the right foods.

Eating right during treatment

Nutritional therapy has several objectives in case of cancer patients, which include prevention and resolution of nutritional deficiencies, achieving and maintaining a healthy weight, minimizing nutrition related side-effects, preserving lean body mass and maximizing the quality of life of the patients.

In case of mesothelioma cases, the food intake or mesothelioma patients is completely different from other people. In general, people need to limit milk, cheese and egg consumption, but in case of people suffering from mesothelioma, they need to eat more milk, cheese and eggs because they need more protein and calories. On the other hand, general people are advised to eat more high-fibre foods, but it may not be good for people suffering from mesothelioma, because such foods may cause diarrhea, cramping and digestion problems. If mesothelioma patients are vulnerable to food-borne infections, they will need to take more care in the kitchen while preparing the food. They will need to arrange for special food habits- scrubbing the fruits and vegetables thoroughly, cooking meat completely and avoiding unpasteurized foods.

Foods to eat and foods to limit

Mesothelioma patients need a diet that is rich in plant foods and low in processed foods and red meats.

You need at least 2.5 cups of fruits and vegetables every day. You will need to include them in every meal of yours. You can also include them in snacks. Different fruits and vegetables are very important for people suffering from mesothelioma. You need to choose whole-grain and avoid refined grains. Whole grains generally contain lower calorie and they are higher in fibre, vitamins and minerals. You will lead to include more, fish, poultry and high-protein non-meats like beans in your diet so that you can get more proteins, which is very much necessary for your day-to-day life.

You will need to reduce processed meat and red meat in your diet. So, it means you will have to be careful with bacon, sausage, and hot dogs. Beef, pork and lamb are considered red meats. You will lead to reduce alcohol consumption. If possible, you should completely stop it. If you cannot stop it, probably it is a wise idea to reduce the consumption to 2 drinks per day in case of men and one glass in case of women.

When you are suffering from mesothelioma, it is very important for you to choose foods that will help you to maintain a healthy weight. You will need to understand portion sizes and also how to read food labels. Since you need low-fat and low-calorie foods, you will need to know which foods are low-fat and low-calorie foods. Low-fat food may not be a low-calorie food and you will need to know that. You should avoid high calorie foods because they can make you overweight and obese. Such factors may result in cancer or may aggravate the existing cancer condition.

Since in mesothelioma cases, the food and nutrition becomes a very crucial factor, the patient and the support system should be more careful with the food choices.

References
1. Malignant Mesothelioma
2. Mesothelioma

If you see a dry, scaly skin that is characterized by red patches that look like a raised skin that is itchy, it might be a psoriasis. This condition is a result of the overproduction of the skin cells in response to an abnormal immune system response to certain triggers. Because the skin cells are produced more quickly than normal, which is about two to six days instead of 21 to 28 days, the excess skin cell formation appears as scaly patches on the skin surface. Having the condition can subject the affected individual to potential stigma and social discrimination, making its treatment valuable.

Psoriasis Treatment

Psoriasis Treatment

 

 

What cause psoriasis?

Genetic predisposition is known to cause the disease, although which gene can actually be considered the trigger remains unclear. The underlying pathology in psoriasis is the abnormal activity of the immune system in response to the presence of the known triggers of the condition. These triggers may be stress, certain medications, infection and hereditary predisposition. These triggers may directly or indirectly cause the disease, while some may only produce some flare ups of the symptoms. There are different types of psoriasis with difference in its appearance and the area affected. Psoriasis may affect various areas of the body, but the most common body areas involved are the elbow, neck, knees and scalp.

Symptoms of psoriasis

Psoriasis may manifest different appearances in its symptoms. Here are some of the major appearances of the skin patches appearing in different types of psoriasis:

  • Inverse psoriasis “ skin folds along the groin, underarms, buttocks and navel.
  • Psoriasis vulgaris “ plaque formation along the skin
  • Guttate psoriasis “ drop-like patches of skin that are small enough to look like spots
  • Pustular psoriasis “ small blister formation with pus
  • Palmoplantar psoriasis “ patches of dry,scaly skin appear on the palms of the hands and the feet
  • Scalp psoriasis “ looks like a flaky dandruffs accompanied by redness on the scalp.

Diagnosing psoriasis

A physical examination is the initial process that your doctor will perform. Because psoriasis can easily mimic the appearance of an eczema and other types of skin disease, it is crucial to make a differential diagnosis to eliminate other conditions. This is important in identifying the proper treatment for psoriasis that will relieve the symptoms and halt the disease progression. Certain tests are usually requested to be performed to ensure making an accurate diagnosis and to rule out other possible skin diseases present. Among the diagnostic procedure involved are the following:

  • Skin biopsy
  • X-ray
  • Medical history
  • Laboratory testing
  • Physical assessment of symptoms (swollen fingers or toes, reduced range of motion, fatigue, tenderness, swelling, painful tendons, morning stiffness, and red, itchy, scaly patches).

Most of the time, the x-ray is used to rule out arthritis because some of the symptoms of the two diseases may be overlapping, such as tender tendons, inflamed joints and swelling.

Treatment options for psoriasis

There are different types of psoriasis, but the treatment approach is usually similar. The treatment goals of psoriasis vary as it depends upon the patient's needs and according to the extent of the severity of their symptoms. Unfortunately, there is no known cure for psoriasis. Treatment usually focuses on relieving the symptoms and improving the quality of life of those affected. There is a significant progress in terms of the medical research that attempt to identify the major cause of the disease in order to find the most appropriate treatment regimen that will cure psoriasis.

Primary care or treatment for psoriasis is to prevent its progression

Because there is no cure for psoriasis, flare ups may occur and the condition may become recurrent. Immediate treatment focuses on relieving the discomforts arising from its symptoms and to prevent the symptoms from progressing. Controlling the symptoms is more important than trying to cure the condition. Knowing the exacerbating factors that trigger the symptoms of psoriasis to flare up is likewise important.

Providing an immediate treatment for the symptoms of psoriasis is needed. This can help reduce the risks of complications while trying to ease the discomforts it brings to the affected individual. Topical therapy is commonly used in treating localized skin lesions. Common topical treatment includes corticosteroids, tazarotene, calciproteine and coal tar products. Emollients used to be given as a treatment for psoriasis, but are not rarely used because of its known side effects producing inflammation and skin irritation to the affected area. Generalized psoriasis, one affecting a larger part of the body, will often require oral medication to obtain relief. Other alternative forms of treatment include ultraviolet light therapy.

Natural sunlight exposure and UV light treatment

Tanning bed light treatment or a natural sunlight exposure is often considered as a treatment where the affected skin is exposed to the light, while the unaffected areas are covered for protection. The heat is introduced to the affected area as tolerated. Ultraviolet treatment belongs to this form of a therapy that is important in preventing flare ups of symptoms.

Natural home remedies against psoriasis

There are a number of natural ways of treating psoriasis. Keeping the skin against drying is an important step. Applying a moisturizer can help combat the symptoms of a dry, flaky skin and in keeping the skin supple to prevent plaque formation. Avoid scented soaps and personal hygiene products. They can trigger flare ups that can worsen the symptoms. Eat foods which nutritions are known to help combat the disease like nuts, cranberries, chocolates and soy. Applying olive oil along the affected skin surface can help lock in the moisture to relieve dryness and flaking. Give yourself a warm bath with some Epson salt, milk, olive or mineral oil can make a difference in relieving itchiness.

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Nowadays patients with mesothelioma are surviving longer than before. It may be because of several factors, but mesothelioma survival rates are increasing.

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Factors affecting survival rates

Current survival results

The mesothelioma survival rates does not include the current data. They actually show the rates of the past. Doctors use the results of past patients and that data of the past to provide survival rates. That is why, it cannot include the present data and so it may not be accurate.

New treatment options

Along with time, treatment options also improve in different diseases and the same is true in case of mesothelioma. The treatment options that are available today may not be available in the past when the data was collected. When you look at the clinical trials you will find new and innovative treatments for the disease.

Misleading statistics

Mesothelioma survival rates may be misleading because they also include patients who did not receive treatment or who probably did not receive treatments from mesothelioma experts.

Age and gender

It is a very important factor in determining the survival rate of patients suffering from mesothelioma. The rate will vary depending on the age of the patient. Younger patients have higher survival rates. The health of the patient will also be crucial because it will decide how well the patient will respond to treatment.

Gender also impacts the survival rate. The five-year relative survival rate in case of women suffering from mesothelioma is more than double the rate seen in case of man. According to recent research, data, man have 6.5% five-year survival rate and women on the other hand, have 15.4% survival rate. Routine health check-ups can be crucial in earlier diagnosis and that's why women have a higher survival rate because they visit the physician about 20% more than men.

Location

If the survival rate of mesothelioma is based on the location of the tumour, it may be misinterpreted because it can be mistaken for other types of cancer. When a patient is diagnosed correctly before it can reach the later stages, it can be cured. In case of pleural patients the survival rate in the second year after diagnosis reduce considerably (11%). But the survival rate for peritoneal patients at the same time may only show a small reduction (35%). Detection of pleural and peritoneal mesothelioma is very difficult during the early stage for effective treatment of the problem.

Survival rates after surgical treatment

It is seen that patient undergoing surgery to remove the tumour have a higher rate of survival because the surgery can reduce the ability of the tumour to spread. Patients who are in the stage 1 or 2 can generally go for different types of surgeries available for mesothelioma patients.

Cell type and histology

You will find three histological cells types or variations in mesothelioma- epithelioid, biphasic and sarcomatoid. Cell type is important in deciding the survival rates. Patients suffering from epithelioid mesothelioma will have the best survival rate. It is so because this type response better to treatment. On the other hand, sarcomatoid type has the poorest survival rate. It spreads quickly and so it is difficult to treat effectively. Survival rates are not consistent in case of biphasic cell types.

Stage

Survival rates that are calculated based on the stage of mesothelioma are important. There is a relationship between mesothelioma stage and patient lights span. If the disease is diagnosed at the early stages, the patient will have better survival rates. However, mesothelioma is generally diagnosed in the later stages because it does not show any specific symptoms. At a later stage, the survival rates are lower because the disease is more advance and difficult to treat during this stage.

References
1. Malignant Mesothelioma
2. Mesothelioma

11

If you are suffering from cancer due to asbestos exposure, you need to take actions and that can be done through mesothelioma legal suits. You have the right to take such an action. How can you get a litigation matter started? Let's find out how you can start mesothelioma legal suits.

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When you are exposed to asbestos, it can result in a cancer called as mesothelioma. If you have recently found out that you have this problem, you are entitled to mesothelioma legal suits. First of all, you need to find a good mesothelioma attorney who can help you to start and win a litigation against the organisation because of which you have mesothelioma. It is very crucial to find the right attorney and you need to choose someone who has prior experience and specialisation in mesothelioma legal suits.

The attorney will sit down with you and will discuss the relevant details of the case. Your attorney may also help you to find right doctor who can help you to fight mesothelioma. If you find the right attorney, he/she will be able to win your mesothelioma litigation and get you the benefits you deserve.

Starting the litigation

Many of the attorneys who specialise in mesothelioma cases will not ask for any payment until a settlement or judgement is received. So, you don't have to worry about paying them upfront. The attorney will work with you to prepare a strong case against the organisation because of which you are suffering from mesothelioma. He will fight for you in the court to get you justice, compensation, treatment, and other benefits. Do not eliminate the idea of filing a case only because you don't have money to pay the attorney. You can go for a free consultation and then find out what type of arrangement, you can make with the attorney so that you don't have to pay any fees regularly, but all the fees can be paid at a later stage after the settlement or judgement is given.

Sometimes attorneys handle individual cases for people and sometimes they combine a group of mesothelioma patients together in one lawsuit. There are both advantages and disadvantages of this approach. If you have a strong case and your case is clubbed with other sufferers who have weaker cases, the overall case may be weaker. On the other hand, if your case is weak, but if the attorney class your case with other strong cases, the possibility of winning settlement of your mesothelioma litigation will increase.

Before you hire an attorney, you should make enough research to find the right attorney to fight your case. However, simply filing a case will not ensure that you are getting millions of dollars in compensation or settlement. The compensation will depend on several factors such as severity of your diagnosis, your past medical history, proof of negligence etc. A good attorney will go through all such information before starting a litigation against the company you think is responsible for the mesothelioma problem. A good attorney will assemble all the necessary facts and will discuss your situation  thoroughly before starting the litigation. Once the litigation starts, your attorney will guide you step-by-step and will tell you what you need to do. Your attorney will do all the technical things, including filing the litigation, fighting it, discussing and negotiating, putting forward the arguments, finding the necessary documents and other important things, which will help you to get the settlement or benefits from the case , you have decided to fight against the organisation who's responsible for your mesothelioma.

References
1. Malignant Mesothelioma
2. Mesothelioma

Representatives of health care facilities inevitably have many priorities. They usually try to keep costs at a manageable level, market the establishments so people know about what they offer, and may solicit donations, especially if the organizations are not-for-profit entities, such as associated with religious denominations. Those duties are all important, but there is another priority that wasn't mentioned: Patient satisfaction. Healthcare managers can do several things to monitor and improve how happy people are with the services provided.

Patient Shadowing

Patient shadowing involves observing patients and their families as they move through different stages of their health care experiences. Common goals include reducing costs, boosting the overall quality of care, and becoming more aware of the challenges patients and their loved ones face as they spend time at health care facilities. Patient shadowing may also allow health care administrators to spot patterns that reveal shortcomings and then train staff members to overcome them.

 

Surveys

Patient surveys can also be good indicators of how a health care facility is doing. Ideally, surveys should be designed to obtain as much information as possible while striving for efficiency. After all, many people don't like to fill out surveys unless they have had very good or very bad experiences that they deem worth discussing.

To deal with that reality appropriately, some heath care service managers offer incentives to make people more willing to give their feedback. For example, in exchange for filling out a survey, a person may get entered into a drawing for a $500 gift card or be told they have a one in 10 chance of getting a free dinner at a local restaurant.

 

Patient-Oriented Educational Opportunities

Statistics about patient experiences in health care indicate that chronic conditions are some of the most expensive medical concerns for patients and their care teams. With that in mind, some forward-thinking health care leaders organize ways to educate patients about how to get more involved in strategies for managing their ailments.

The topics for such educational events could range from heart-healthy recipes to techniques that people with arthritis can use to stay active and physically fit.

If those initiatives go well, it enables patients to potentially not have to go to as many health care appointments because they're healthier overall. As a result, health care workers are subjected to less strain and stress.

Targeted Campaigns to Boost Efficiency

If you think about the last time you visited the hospital for an evaluation or treatment, there's a good chance it wasn't a quick stop. Almost inevitably, patients have to prepare themselves to spend hours in waiting rooms and may even be subjected to incorrect diagnoses that make them even more delayed.

However, there are several things associated with improving efficiency in health care settings. To get an overview of many of them, check out this IG link. As you'll see from the details of the infographic, continuing education, human resources, communication, and record keeping are all things that help make health care facilities more efficient.

It's also important for senior members of hospital staff to hire well-educated health care administration personnel to keep everything running smoothly. Fortunately for people interested in that career path, it's easy to receive education in a non-traditional way by pursuing a University of Arizona online course. The Master of Public Health internet-based course has several concentrations, including Health Services Administration and Health Promotion.

 

Although it's smart for health care administrators to take a customized approach to making patients more satisfied, the areas and methods discussed above can be good starting points for experts who want to make positive and noticeable differences. It could arguably be said that an essential element is a desire to change for the better.

Sometimes detoxification becomes very much necessary for you. If you’re feeling sluggish or struggling with different types of skin problems or pains, aches or digestive problems earlier constant companion or you are not able to lose weight even after trying very hard, then probably you need detoxification of your body.

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This is not a new thing, it has been practiced for centuries in different cultures. Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine have their own detoxification process.

Detoxification includes resting, cleaning and nourishing the body from inside. The detoxification process eliminates toxins from your body using different methods. Your body is fed with healthy nutrients. Detoxification helps you to eliminate toxins from your body, protect you from diseases and also renew your body’s ability to stay healthy.

How does it work?

Very simple stance, detoxification means cleaning the blood. Cleaning can be done by removing the impurities from the blood and the liver. The elimination of toxins from the human body is possible through the intestine, kidneys, lymph, lungs and skin. If somehow these systems are not working fine or are compromised, then they cannot filter the impurities. In that case, each and every cell in the human body is affected negatively.

A detox program can help you in natural cleansing

  • Resting your organs through fasting
  • Stimulating the liver so that it can remove more toxins from the body
  • Improving circulation of blood in the body
  • Promoting elimination of the toxins through kidneys, intestine and skin
  • Refuting the body using some healthy nutrients

How do you know the need of detoxification

It is great if you can detoxify your body at least once a year. However, children, nursing mothers and patients suffering from chronic degenerative diseases or tuberculosis or cancer should not try it without the advice of their doctor. It is important to consult your doctor before you go for detoxification. Since today, more and more toxins are present in the environment, detoxification is more critical.

If you are seeing any of the following symptoms, then you need detoxification

  • Unexplained fatigue
  • Sluggish elimination
  • Irritated skin
  • Allergies
  • Low-grade infections
  • Puffy eye or bags under the eyes
  • Bloating
  • Menstrual problems
  • Mental confusion

 

How to start a detox

Before you start a detox program, you need to reduce the possible toxin load. That can be done by eliminating coffee, alcohol, refined sugars, cigarettes and saturated fats. They can be obstacles in the healing process since they act as toxins. You also need to reduce the use of household cleaners and personal health items which chemical based. Such personal health items include shampoos, cleaners, toothpaste and deodorants. In place of them, you can use their natural alternatives.

Besides that, you also need to reduce your stress levels. Stress is a barrier to your good health. It also triggers the release of different stress hormones in your body. Too much of them can cause toxins in the body and may also reduce the detoxification enzymes present in the liver. Meditation, yoga, etc. are simple ways to reduce the stress.

Which detox program is good for you?

There are different types of detox programs available along with detox recipes. They follow different approaches and need different duration. You need to find one detox program that is effective and fits the lifestyle you have. It may not be possible for you to go for some of the detox programs because of their complexity, time required or straight ineffectiveness.
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