Heart Disease, Stroke and Diabetes (157)
Peripheral artery disease (PAD), occurs when your extremities (often your legs) don’t receive enough blood flow. This causes symptoms such as leg pain when walking (intermittent claudication). PAD is a common circulatory problem in which narrowed arteries reduce blood flow to your limbs. PAD is also likely a sign of a more widespread accumulation of fatty deposits in your arteries (atherosclerosis). This condition may be reducing blood flow to your heart and brain, as well as your legs.
• Pain and cramping of your hip, thigh or calf muscles after activity, such as walking or climbing stairs (intermittent claudication)
• Leg numbness or weakness
• Cold feeling in your lower leg or foot, may be worse on one side
• Non-healing sores on your toes, feet or legs
• Change in the color of your legs
• Hair loss or decreased hair growth on your feet and legs
• Slower growth of your toenails
• Shiny skin on your legs
• Erectile dysfunction in men
If PAD is severe, pain can occur at rest or when you’re lying down. This is also called ischemic rest pain. It may be severe enough to disrupt sleep. Hanging your legs over the edge of your bed or walking around your room may temporarily relieve the pain.
Prevention and Treatment of PAD
Treatment for PAD focuses on reducing symptoms and preventing further progression of the disease. In most cases, lifestyle changes, exercise and claudication medications are enough to slow the progression or even reverse the symptoms of PAD.
Physical Activity. The most effective treatment for PAD is regular physical activity. Your doctor may recommend a program of supervised exercise training for you.
Diet. Many PAD patients have elevated cholesterol levels. A diet low in saturated fat, trans fat and cholesterol can help lower blood cholesterol levels, but cholesterol-lowering medication may be necessary to maintain the proper cholesterol levels.
Smoking Cessation. Tobacco smoke greatly increases your risk for PAD and your risk for heart attack and stroke. Stop smoking. It will help to slow the progression of PAD and other heart-related diseases.
Medication. You may be prescribed high blood pressure medications and/or cholesterol-lowering medications.
Procedures. Minimally invasive procedures consist of angioplasty or stent placement (as is done in the heart for coronary artery disease (CAD) or clot-removal treatment.)They are nonsurgical and are performed by making a small incision through which a catheter is inserted to reach the blocked artery. A tiny balloon is inflated inside the artery to open the clog. A stent — a tiny wire mesh cylinder — may also be implanted at this time to help hold the artery open. Sometimes a medicine can be given through the catheter or a special device can be inserted through it to remove a clot that’s blocking the artery.
If there’s a long portion of artery in your leg that’s completely blocked and you’re having severe symptoms, surgery may be necessary. A vein from another part of the body can be used to “bypass” and reroute blood around the closed artery.
Your healthcare professional will discuss your options and help choose the best procedure for your situation.
Nearly one million Americans will die of heart disease this year; 2,400 will die each day of cardiovascular disease, an average of one death every 36 seconds.
Risk factors include a family history of premature coronary artery disease, tobacco smoking, hypertension, diabetes, obesity, and most famously, elevated cholesterol levels.
What is not generally known is that as many as 50% of first heart attack victims have a normal level of cholesterol. So it is clear that there are factors other than total cholesterol involved.
Important but lesser known risk factors are inflammation, infections, diet, and lifestyle.
An easily obtained blood test called C reactive protein (CRP) is a marker for inflammation in a person’s body and is an important risk factor for heart disease. Inflammation can come from infections, diets rich in saturated fats and sugar, toxins such as lead and mercury, metabolic syndrome and diabetes. The degree of inflammation in your body is at least as important as your cholesterol level.
A typical American diet rich in saturated fats and high sugar foods, as well as tobacco use, obesity, and insulin resistance, can cause the CRP to be elevated.
Chronic hidden infections in the body can also raise the CRP level. Infections which have been linked to cardiovascular disease include periodontal gum disease, respiratory infections, stomach infections (H Pylori) and even urinary tract infections.
Beyond the typical statin drugs offered, there are safe, natural and very effective approaches to lowering cardiovascular risk. These include dietary modification – I favor either the Mediterranean or Paleo diet. Omega 3 fatty acids are great at reducing inflammation and correcting abnormal cholesterol profiles. Other important tools are exercise, treating chronic infections, and aspirin therapy.
Natural agents like Niacin (vitamin B3), Pantethine (vitamin B5), and plant sterols can be used to effectively reduce cholesterol and inflammation. Even pomegranate juice has been shown to lower cholesterol. As well magnesium can be used to reduce blood vessel spasm and blood pressure.
Recent evidence suggests using hormone replacement around onset of menopause may reduce development of coronary artery disease in women. This is important given that heart attack risk for women begins to rise after menopause to meet that of men. Testosterone replacement in men may help reduce cardiovascular risk
For many people, lifestyle and nutritional interventions can substantially reduce cardiovascular risk even without the use of more aggressive pharmacological treatments. Though cholesterol lowering drugs can be life saving there are other safe and effective ways to reduce the risk of heart disease.
For our local athletes and active people, autumn offers excellent weather to stay active outdoors. But what would you do if you were somehow injured? Would you let the injury derail your hopes of staying active or would you find someone to help you get back to doing what you love?
Traditional Chiropractic involves the manipulation of the spine to improve spinal function. Doctors of Chiropractic are highly skilled clinicians trained to detect and correct misalignments and restrictions within the vertebral column. By ensuring proper spinal mechanics, regular Chiropractic visits aid the body in prevention and correction of injury.
One important facet of Chiropractic care is the treatment of the body as a whole. As common sense dictates, not all problems originate in the spine. Sometimes an aberration in the mechanics of an extremity can be the culprit. Chiropractors also identify and treat abnormal mechanics in other regions, such as the shoulders, hips, knees, etc.
Once the joints have been treated for irregular mechanics, the soft tissue surrounding the joints must be addressed. There are various physical therapies utilized to treat injury to soft tissues. Two common therapies used to treat soft tissue components of injury are electric stimulation and ultrasound. These modalities work by stimulating the injured area, soothing irritation, relaxing muscle spasm and increasing circulation.
Another method of soft tissue treatment is Graston Technique. Clinicians trained in Graston use stainless steel instruments to detect abnormalities and scar tissue resultant from injury. Once discovered, these lesions are corrected using the Graston instruments. Simultaneously, a controlled inflammatory response is elicited in the tissue. This response is what triggers and facilitates the healing process, thus restoring the target tissue’s natural mechanics.
Another technique which is becoming more popular is Kinesiotaping. Kinesiotape is a special elastic tape which, when applied to an area, aids in healing by gently pulling the skin away from the underlying tissue thus allowing for greater circulation. Better circulation means faster, more efficient healing. Depending on the taping method, the clinician can either improve the function of a weak muscle group or inhibit the function of an overused muscle group.
As you can see, there are many treatment options for sports injury. A licensed Chiropractor will determine which technique is appropriate for a specific problem. If you or someone else is dealing with a new or chronic injury, don’t hesitate to consult a Doctor of Chiropractic.
i-Lipo™ is the latest in laser lipolysis, offering you a way to achieve inch loss and body contouring with no pain, no needles and no down time. i-Lipo is a possible alternative to liposuction that is affordable and can produce similar results.
How i-Lipo Works
The i-Lipo emits low levels of laser energy, which creates a chemical signal in the fat cells, breaking down the stored triglycerides into free fatty acids and glycerol and releasing them though channels in the cell membranes. The fatty acids and glycerol are then transported around the body to the tissues that will use them during metabolism to create energy.
This process of fatty acid release is a natural response of the body when the body needs to use stored energy reserves, thus i-Lipo is not creating any unnatural reaction in the body nor does it affect or damage any surrounding structures such as skin, blood vessels and peripheral nerves. A period of exercise post treatment will ensure the complete metabolism and thus elimination from the body of the freed fatty acids.
When you consume more calories than you use, the extra calories are stored as fat inside a fat cell. The i-Lipo laser emits low levels of safe laser energy, which passes safely through your skin and onto the fat cells. This affects the fat cell membrane (outside wall of the fat cell) and causes it to release the fat stored within it. This does not affect the neighboring structures such as skin, blood vessels and peripheral nerves.
Fat spills out from the broken cell membranes and are released into the interstitial space where they are slowly transported through the body’s natural lymphatic system, it is strongly advisable to undertake some form of physical exercise to help dispose of the fat more efficiently and ensure it is not reabsorbed.
i-Lipo uses low levels of visible red laser light to create a safe and painless bio-stimulation effect in the targeted fat tissue. This stimulation is of the normal chemical pathways which the body uses to free up energy resources when required, so i-Lipo does not produce any abnormal effects in the body or damage body tissue such as cells, blood vessels or neighboring nerves or vital organs. The treatment can be performed on all skin types and body areas where unwanted fat is stored and you can return to normal activity immediately after treatment.
Independent clinical studies have shown i-Lipo to be, in some cases, comparable to results achieved by liposuction. Ultrasound imagery shows up to 30% reduction in the fat layer depth after just one treatment. Additional treatments improve results further. Results can be seen immediately after each treatment as the fat cell contents are released. Light exercise post treatment can accelerate the removal of the released fat.
Results can be seen immediately after treatment. Typically a 2-4 cm loss in abdomen circumference can be achieved with every treatment. A course of eight treatments is recommended over four weeks with two treatments per week.
Compared with surgical liposuction and other Ultrasound or laser techniques, i-Lipo is much more affordable, infinitely safer, with similar results.
Known as the master gland, the butterfly-shaped thyroid sits in a notch just below your throat. Its hormones affect many systems and functions, including:
• Brain development
• Breathing, heart and nervous system functions
• Blood cells production
• Muscle and bone strength
• Body temperature
• Menstrual cycle
• Weight gain and loss
• Cholesterol levels
• Skin hydration
So it makes sense that thyroid imbalances can make your life seem entirely off-kilter. The most common form of thyroid imbalances is hypothyroidism. It occurs when your thyroid is not producing enough thyroid hormone to support your daily activities.
Women often call us because they are feeling thyroid symptoms, but have been told by their doctors that “everything looks fine”. Thyroid-related issues can arise at any age and may not necessarily show up on routine lab tests. Subclinical hypothyroidism is a term used when someone is experiencing symptoms of hypothyroidism but whose blood test results are still in the “normal range” for thyroid hormone production.
The signs and symptoms of hypothyroidism vary widely, depending on the severity of the hormone deficiency. But in general, any problems you do have tend to develop slowly, often over a number of years. At first, you may barely notice the symptoms, such as fatigue and sluggishness, or you may simply attribute them to getting older. But as your metabolism continues to slow, you may develop more obvious signs and symptoms. They may include:
• Severe fatigue, loss of energy
• Weight gain, difficulty losing weight
• Depression and depressed mood
• Joint and muscle pain, headaches
• Dry skin, brittle nails
• Brittle hair, itchy scalp, hair loss
• Irregular periods, PMS symptoms
• Calcium metabolism difficulties
• Difficulty tolerating cold and lower body temperature
• Sleeping more than average
• Diminished sex drive
• Puffiness in face and extremities
• Bruising/clotting problems
• Allergies that suddenly appear or get worse
• Persistent cold sores, boils or breakouts
• Tingling sensation in wrists and hands that mimics carpal tunnel syndrome
• Memory loss, fuzzy thinking, difficulty following conversation or train of thought
Rosacea is a common skin disease that causes redness, pustules, papules and swelling on the face. Often referred to as “adult acne”, rosacea frequently begins as a tendency to flush or blush easily.
Fain-skinned adults between the ages of 30 and 50 may develop rosacea. It affects men and women of any age and even children. Since it may be associated with menopause, women are more affected than men and may notice an extreme sensitivity to cosmetics. An occasional embarrassment or a tense moment may trigger flushing.
Rosacea may progress to persistent redness in the center of the face that may gradually involve the cheeks, forehead, chin and nose. The eyes, ears, chest and back may also be involved. With time small blood vessels and tiny pimples begin to appear on and around the reddened area.
When rosacea first develops, the redness may come and go. Some people may flush or blush and never form pustules or papules. Small dilated vessels also may be present due to prolonged sun exposure. However, when the skin does not return to its normal color, and when other symptoms such as pimples and enlarged blood vessels become visible, it is best to seek advice from a dermatologist. The condition may last for years, rarely reverse itself, and can become worse without treatment.
Now a new medicine is available for rosacea which has just come out in the last few months. This is a cream which is rubbed on the patient‘s face and stops the redness on their face immediately and lasts for 12 to 24 hours. In order to get this medication you must see your dermatologist. Most insurance companies will pay for this medication.
Other medications which have been used for many years can be used but will take three weeks to two months to improve rosacea. Topical creams, lotions, washes and gels that contain various topical antibiotics, sulfacetonide, benzoyl peroxide and retinoids can be prescribed. Oral antibiotics tend to produce faster results than topical medications.
The persistent redness may be treated with a small electric needle or by laser surgery. Green tinted makeup may mask the redness. The key to successful management of rosacea is early diagnosis and treatment. When left untreated, rosacea will get worse and may be more difficult to treat. Remember a new medicine is available which will immediately stop your redness and flushing so see your dermatologist for more information.
Recent estimates project that as many as one in three American adults will have diabetes in 2050, and an additional 79 million Americans are at high risk for developing type 2 diabetes. The American Diabetes Association estimates that the total national cost of diagnosed diabetes in the United States is $245 billion.
Diabetes is a serious disease. If it isn’t managed, it can damage many parts of the body, leading to heart attacks, strokes, amputation, blindness, kidney failure, and nerve damage. But there is good news: diabetes complications can be prevented or delayed by properly managing your health.
Women are more likely than men to develop chronic diseases, such as diabetes, and to suffer disproportionately from disability compared to men. It is important for women to know their risk for diabetes and take steps to reduce the chances of developing the disease. Evidence shows that if a woman with prediabetes loses 5-7% of her body weight and increases her physical activity she can prevent or delay diabetes. Early interventions and access to preventive care services are also important for women to reduce the risk of developing other diseases, such as cardiovascular disease.
There are many risk factors for diabetes, such as having a family history of diabetes, being obese or overweight, having uncontrolled high blood pressure, and being inactive.
Steps to lower one’s risk for diabetes include eating a more healthy diet with more fruits and vegetables, being more physically active, and keeping your blood pressure under control. It is also recommended to not smoke.
If you have questions or concerns about diabetes it is a good idea to speak to your healthcare provider. In addition, more information about diabetes is available from the American Diabetes Association at diabetes.org.
Cancer treatments can have life-saving benefits in people with cancer. However, they do come with the potential for serious complications that can affect your heart. These complications include high blood pressure, heart failure, heart rhythm disturbances (called arrhythmias), blood clots, stroke, and heart disease.
Thankfully these complications are less common and there is something cancer patients can do. The key to keeping your heart healthy during cancer treatments is to know your body, recognize the warning symptoms of a possible heart problem, and keep an open dialogue with your doctors.
As a first step, be aware of your body. Your body will go through a lot of changes during your cancer treatment. It is important to understand the common side effects of your treatment and recognize the red flag symptoms. Some of these red flag symptoms include: shortness of breath, excessive fatigue, chest discomfort, unexplained sweating.
Some heart complications to keep in mind:
1. Heart Failure. Some chemotherapy agents, including some used for breast cancer treatment, can cause the heart to weaken. People taking these medications undergo frequent heart testing to monitor the heart pumping function before, during, and after treatment. Heart failure is a good example of a complication that has the potential to be reversed with early detection.
2. Heart Disease. People that receive radiation to the chest have a higher chance of developing coronary disease and heart attack. The reason is because as radiation penetrates the chest wall to attack cancer cells (for example in breast cancer or lymphoma), the radiation can also scatter to the heart and cause damage and plaque build-up in the arteries of the heart. The good news is this complication is becoming less common due to more advances and focused ways of delivering radiation treatment.
3. Arrhythmias. Some chemotherapy medications can cause abnormal heart rhythms. This typically is temporary and occurs during administration of the medication. If you feel lightheaded or faint, be sure to tell your chemotherapy nurse or doctor.
4. High blood pressure and medication interactions. Some chemotherapy medications can raise the blood pressure, which is why your blood pressure is monitored during chemotherapy. Additionally, almost every chemotherapy medication can interact with common heart medications, which is why cardiologists are often involved in your healthcare when you start chemotherapy.
The key thing to remember is many of these serious cardiac complications from cancer treatment can either be reversed or treated effectively with early detection.
So be aware of your body, be mindful of the warning signs for your heart, and keep in close communication with your health care team.
Cavities of the teeth, which are known as dental caries to dental professionals, is a bacterial disease of the mouth. The most prevalent bacteria invader is Streptococcus Mutans. Many factors contribute to this bacteria’s ability to thrive in the mouth and cause destruction. This bacteria can also be transferred to others from saliva contact.
The bacteria live off sugar, and the byproduct of this produces an acid that attacks the teeth and dissolves them away. A dentist must treat the teeth. Otherwise, the bacteria will spread and cause rampant destruction. If a person’s mouth is acidic, which happens from drinking soda and eating a processed diet, the tooth destruction is accelerated. A film is formed on the teeth, known as dental plague, within a 24-hour period. This is where the bacteria live. The plaque needs to be removed by brushing 2-3 times per day, and flossing or by using a waterpik.
A person’s diet needs to be as healthy as possible and include lots of vegetables to help maintain a proper pH level. There are many books and information available on balancing the body’s pH levels, which helps our mouth and our total body health.
Foods that stick to the teeth need to be avoided on a continual basis. This includes candy as well as some crackers. Try to brush off any food stuck to our teeth as soon as possible.
There are also other beneficial products available from vitamin companies and your dental professional.
EvoraPro is a probiotic mint that replenishes healthy bacteria in the mouth and causes Streptococcus Mutans to be eliminated. It also freshens breath and whitens teeth.
Theramints or Spry mints are made from xylitol. Xylitol is a sugar alcohol that breaks down differently than sugar and helps maintain a neutral pH of the mouth. Streptococcus Mutans is unable to digest xylitol so their growth is greatly reduced.
MI Paste is another product, which contains Recaldent. Recaldent releases calcium and phosphate and is absorbed by the teeth. These minerals help to protect and rebuild tooth surfaces. This can be very beneficial for white spots on the enamel, sensitivity, dry mouth, and also maintains pH balance.
Please do all you can to promote dental health because our teeth are essential for proper nutrition and optimal health.
Discogenic back pain can occur as the discs between the vertebrae of the spine gradually change over time, becoming less supple and more susceptible to damage and inflammation. Degenerative disc disease is one of the most prevalent causes of acute and chronic low back pain, whether the result of injury or the natural aging process.
Over the years, there have been numerous diagnostic and treatment tools available to assess and treat discogenic back pain. These conservative non-surgical interventions have often provided effective symptom reduction.
However, some patients have failed these conservative treatments and resorted to lumbar fusion surgery. But now there is another promising treatment option for treating chronic discogenic back pain.
New Treatment Offers
Disc regenerative therapy (DRT) is an exciting new approach that provides patients with another effective treatment option. This procedure triggers the body’s natural healing mechanisms, relieving pain and often curing the cause.
DRT treatment promotes the healing of injured discs through the injection of glucosamine and dextrose solution into the center of the disc. These natural substances, already found in the body, stimulate the growth of new collagen fibers and increase the strength of the painful disc.
Glucosamine taken by mouth has proven to be effective in relieving osteoarthritis pain in the knee and slowing degeneration. DRT takes a more direct approach by concentrating the solution in the impaired disc, delivering the solution right where it’s needed. By working in tandem with the body’s ability to heal itself, this disc treatment may potentially lead to complete and permanent improvement.
Clinical trials have been completed, supporting the benefits of DRT and its ability to reduce pain and improve the patient’s activity level. For example, in a pilot study performed by R.G. Klein, et al., DRT demonstrated significant improvement with low back discogenic pain. It is theorized that the reduction in pain and disability are the result of favorable alterations in the intervertebral disc and surrounding joints.
Excellent Results, Lower Costs
While additional research is still being conducted on this therapy, increasingly more pain management specialists around the world are incorporating DRT into treatment plans for patients experiencing chronic discogenic pain. Widespread recognition continues to grow because of the positive results of this cost effective technique. It also has the potential to reduce the need for more costly surgical interventions.
For effective relief from chronic back pain, talk to board certified pain specialists who are knowledgeable in the full range of treatment options, including the latest therapeutic