Medical Glossary for Diseases and Complications (A-Z)


Hay Fever

Hay fever, also known as allergic rhinitis, is caused by an allergic response to outdoor or indoor allergens such as pollen and dust mites. The symptoms usually start immediately after the person is exposed to a specific allergen that causes allergy and may include: Runny nose or nasal congestion Facial pain and pressure in the sinuses Sneezing Coughing Watering and itching in the eyes Swelling in the eyes Blue discolouration of the skin under the eyes

Heart attack

A heart attack occurs when the flow of blood to the heart is blocked, most often by a build-up of fat, cholesterol and other substances, which form a plaque in the arteries that feed the heart (coronary arteries). The interrupted blood flow can damage or destroy part of the heart muscle. Shortness of breath Pressure, pain or squeezing in your chest that may spread to your arm, neck, jaw or back, sweating or a cold sweat, dizziness are some of the symptoms. Avoid smoking, Check your blood pressure and cholesterol levels, regular exercise, maintain healthy weight and balanced diet are some of the ways to prevent a heart atatck.

Heart Tests That Your Doctor May Recommend

Routine heart check-ups are essential to prevent any risk that may result in heart attack or any major heart problems. Your doctor may recommend tests that may help him or her know what exactly is going on in the blood vessels that carry blood throughout your body. 1) Carotid Ultrasound This test is performed to detect any blockages that may lead to stroke. 2) Coronary Calcium (Ultrafast CT Scan) This test is performed to measure the amount of calcium build up in the plaque in your arteries. 3) Heart CT Scan (Coronary CT Angiogram) This test is performed to detect any blockages in the arteries that supply blood to the heart.

Heat Stroke

Heat stroke is a condition that occurs when the body temperature becomes very high due to excessive exposure to heat. It can result from exposure to hot environment, strenuous activity, wearing excessive clothes, dehydration and alcohol consumption. Heatstroke requires emergency medical help. Children and elderly people are more prone to heatstroke. It's important to treat it immediately as heatstrokes can be very dangerous leading to vital organ damage or even death. While waiting for the emergency team, you can try the following measures: Get to a shady or air-conditioned place Cool off with a wet sheet and a fan Take a cool shower or bath Drink plenty of fluids

Home Remedies for Menstrual Cramps

There are some easy home remedies for menstrual cramps that can help reduce the pain. 1) Water Drinking water helps avoid painful bloating during menstruation. Warm and hot water is better for cramps; hot water helps increase the blood flow in the skin and relaxes the cramped muscles. You can also eat water-based food to increase hydration, like lettuce, cucumbers, watermelon and berries. 2) Calcium Foods high in calcium in your diet can help reduce muscle cramping during menstruation. Foods with high calcium content include: Dairy products including milk, Almonds, Leafy green vegetables, Cinnamon. 3) Ginger Add a small piece of ginger to hot water and drink it; this may help relieve pain. 4) Heat Placing a hot pack on the abdomen and lower back may help relieve pain. Taking a warm bath or placing a hot towel also reduces pain. 5) Exercise Exercise releases endorphins, which act as a natural pain killer and mood lifter. Moderate activity such as walking or yoga also helps prevent or reduce menstrual symptoms.

Home Remedies for Sore Throat

A throat infection caused by bacteria needs to be treated with an antibiotic, whereas those caused by viruses may be relieved by some home remedies. These include: 1) Get adequate rest. 2) Gargle with warm salt water at least once every hour. 3) Consume plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration, especially hot fluids. 4) Humidify your surroundings with cool or warm mist using a vaporiser or a humidifier; ensure that your surroundings are not too damp or cold. 5) Avoid smoking and using other tobacco products; also, avoid exposure to second-hand smoke. 6) Chew lozenges or cough drops. 7) Try drinking chicken soup or warm tea with some honey. 8) Try steam inhalation for 5 to 10 minutes and repeat several times a day; be careful to not burn yourself. 9) Avoid caffeine as it can cause dehydration.

Home Remedies for Urinary Tract Infections

A urinary tract infection (UTI) is an infection in any part of your urinary system — your kidneys, ureters, bladder and urethra. Most infections involve the lower urinary tract — the bladder and the urethra. Women are at greater risk of developing a UTI than men are. Some of the home remedies that can help ease the symptoms of urinary tract infections are: 1) Drink plenty of water. It helps flush out the bacteria, thus reducing the infection. 2) Include unsweetened cranberry juice/tablets in your diet. This keeps the bacteria from sticking to the walls of the bladder, thus flushing them out. 3) Taking vitamin C supplements makes your urine more acidic and helps fight against bacteria. 4) Include curds in your daily diet. Curds contain probiotics, which are good bacteria that help keep off the bad bacteria. 5) Use Warmth to Soothe the Pain. Applying a heating pad at low temperature can help soothe the pain 6) Have healthy foods such as high-fibre carbohydrates and healthy fats such as olive oil that aid in digestion Avoid caffeine, alcohol, spicy food, nicotine, carbonated drinks and artificial sweeteners that can irritate your bladder.

How Diabetes Affects Wound Healing

Diabetes is a condition in which your blood glucose level is high. Foot ulcers are common wounds which affects diabetic patients. Wound healing is delayed in diabetic patients. The factors that influence wound healing in diabetic patients include: 1) Blood glucose level. Elevated blood glucose level stiffens the arteries and cause narrowing of the blood vessels which can adversely affect wound healing. 2) Poor circulation. Narrowed blood vessels lead to decreased blood flow, nutrients and oxygen to a wound. This results in reduced ability of the body to fight infections and delay in wound healing. 3) Reduced immunity. Poorly functioning immune system in diabetic patients puts them at a risk of developing an infection.