medfacts

Usually, skin cells grow deep in the skin and rise to the surface about once a month. In people with psoriasis, the immune system sends out faulty signals that causes the cycle to speed up too much. Dead skin cells build up on the skin’s surface. The most common form of psoriasis is called plaque psoriasis and appears as red patches covered with a white sheet of dead cells that have built up. Other types of psoriasis include guttate, inverse, pustular, and erythrodermic psoriasis.

You can learn more here:
PubMed
National Psoriasis Foundation
WebMD

Aspirin works to prevent the formation of clots in your vascular system. Clots tend to form on ruptured atherosclerotic plaques that build up along the lining of your blood vessels over the years. Plaque can build up in response to injury caused by a variety of mechanisms: high blood pressure, abnormal blood sugar, toxins inhaled through smoking, and a number of other possible factors.

These clots can become dislodged from the vessel they originate from and cause even more serious conditions like a pulmonary embolism or a stroke.

You can learn more about aspirin here:

Medline Plus
American Heart Association

MSUD

Maple syrup urine disease

MSUD

Maple syrup urine disease (MSUD) is a metabolism disorder passed down through families in which the body cannot break down certain parts of proteins. Urine in persons with this condition can smell like maple syrup.
Causes, incidence, and risk factors
Maple syrup urine disease (MSUD) is caused by a gene defect. Persons with this condition cannot break down the amino acids leucine, isoleucine, and valine. This leads to a buildup of these chemicals in the blood.
In the most severe form, MSUD can damage the brain during times of physical stress (such as infection, fever, or not eating for a long time).
Some types of MSUD are mild or come and go. Even in the mildest form, repeated periods of physical stress can cause mental retardation and high levels of leucine.

Symptoms

Avoiding food
Coma
Feeding difficulties
Lethargy
Seizures
Urine that smells like maple syrup
Vomiting

Signs and tests

Plasma amino acid test
Urine amino acid test
There will be signs of ketosis and excess acid in blood (acidosis).

Treatment

When the condition is diagnosed, and during episodes, treatment involves eating a protein-free diet. Fluids, sugars, and possibly fats are given through a vein (IV). Peritoneal dialysis or hemodialysis can be used to reduce the level of amino acids.
A special diet free of branched-chain amino acids is started when amino acid levels are normal. The health care provider will follow these levels closely, and will adjust the diet based on amino acid levels.
Long term treatment requires a special diet. The diet includes a man-made infant formula with low levels of the amino acids leucine, isoleucine, and valine. Persons with this condition must remain on this diet permanently.
It is very important to always follow this diet to prevent nervous system (neurological) damage. This requires frequent blood tests and close supervision by a registered dietitian and physician, as well as cooperation by the parents.

Expectations (prognosis)

This disease can be life threatening if untreated.
Even with dietary treatment, stressful situations and illness can still cause high levels of certain amino acids. Death may occur during these episodes. With strict dietary treatment, children have grown into healthy adulthood.

Complications

Coma
Death
Neurological damage
Calling your health care provider
Call your health care provider if you have a family history of MSUD and are planning to start a family. Also call immediately if you have a newborn who has symptoms of maple syrup urine disease.

Prevention

Genetic counseling is suggested for people who want to have children and who have a family history of maple syrup urine disease. Many states now screen all newborns with blood tests for MSUD.
If a screening test shows that your baby may have MSUD, a follow-up blood test for amino acid levels should be done right away to confirm the disease.

References

Wendel U, Ogier de Baulny H. Branched-chain organic acidurias/acidemias. In: Fernandes J, Saudubray J-m, van den Berghe G, Walter JH, eds. Inborn Metabolic Diseases: Diagnosis and Treatment. 4th ed. New York, NY: Springer; 2006:chap 19.
Review Date: 5/15/2011.
Reviewed by: Chad Haldeman-Englert, MD, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, Section on Medical Genetics, Winston-Salem, NC. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.

There are three kinds of tachycardia:

  • sinus tachycardia
  • atrial or supraventricular tachycardia
  • ventricular tachycardia

Out of these, sinus tachycardia is the most benign and is typically a normal physiological response to things like exercise, anxiety, fear, and fever. It is a result of quickened firing of the sinoatrial node, the heart’s “pacemaker”, in a regular rhythm. Symptoms include dizziness, lightheadedness, shortness of breath, palpitations, and more.

Sinus tachycardia can also be a symptom of a more serious condition, such as anemia, thyroid problems, or a heart attack. As such, the presence of sinus tachycardia, while not concerning by itself, may warrant further investigation.

You can learn more here:
MayoClinic
American Heart Association

ADH works by signaling the collecting ducts of the kidney to promote increased reabsorption of water into your system. ADH is produced by the hypothalamus and released by the posterior lobe of your pituitary gland.

ADH can be blocked by a number of drugs, including alcohol. This is why the need to urinate increases with alcohol consumption as well as explains the need to stay hydrated while drinking, as the alcohol blocks ADH from working properly.

You can learn more here:
ColoState
Medline Plus

This first flu vaccine was developed using an egg based manufacturing process. A manufactured vaccine virus is injected into a fertilized hen’s egg. As the egg incubates, the virus multiplies. Eventually, the fluid containing the vaccine is collected from the egg. The viral antigen is purified and developed further into what we use as the flu shot.

Since then, researchers have also developed a cell-based manufacturing method, approved for use in 2012, and recombinant flu vaccines, approved for use in 2013.

You can learn more here:
Center for Disease Control and Prevention
History of Vaccines

A cool timeline can be found here:
Novartis Vaccines

There are three kinds of tachycardia:

  • sinus tachycardia
  • atrial or supraventricular tachycardia
  • ventricular tachycardia

Unlike supraventricular, or atrial, tachycardia which starts in the heart’s upper chambers, or atria, ventricular tachycardia starts in the heart’s lower chambers, called ventricles. The ventricles pump blood into the arteries. When the ventricles pump too fast, they do not get filled with blood properly before each beat. This leads to worsening blood circulation.

Ventricular tachycardia is most often a symptom of an underlying heart condition, such as coronary artery disease, cardiomyopathy, or cardiac valve disease. It can also develop during or after a heart attack due to the formation of scar tissue in the ventricles.

Emergent treatment of ventricular tachycardia may include cardioversion, CPR, or IV medications. Long term control may require medications, radiofrequency catheter ablation, or an implanted pacemaker/defibrillator.

You can learn more here:
American Heart Association
MedlinePlus
Cleveland Clinic

While the origins of the ebola virus disease (EVD) remain unclear, current evidence points to fruit bats being the natural virus host. It is thought that the virus then spread to human hosts through contact with fruit bat carcasses or other human-animal contacts.

There are five known strains of EVD: Zaire, Bundibugyo, Sudan, Reston and Taï Forest. The current 2014 outbreak that was declared an international emergency by the WHO is caused by the Zaire strain.

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World Health Organization
Center for Disease Control and Prevention

The more smart sounding way: Chronic bronchitis is when your mucus-producing glands in cartilaginous airways undergo hypertrophy and progressively limits airflow more and more. It can also be called chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Bronchitis is extremely common, and occurs when your bronchial tubes have been inflamed. Bronchi are the air passages that go from your trachea to alveoli in the lungs.

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MedScape
MayoClinic
PubMed

There are three kinds of tachycardia:

  • sinus tachycardia
  • atrial or supraventricular tachycardia
  • ventricular tachycardia

Supraventricular tachycardia (SVT) is also known as atrial tachycardia, as the upper chambers of the heart are called “atriums”. It is more common in women, smokers, alcohol drinkers, and caffeine consumers. SVT can cause symptoms such as shortness of breath, dizziness, palpitations, or chest pain.

SVT can lead to cardiac arrest, although it is less likely to due to compared to ventricular tachycardia.

Common therapies for SVT include simple things like a carotid massage and the Valsalva maneuver, as well as medications. If necessary, electrocardioversion may also be used to shock the patient back to a sinus rhythm.

You can learn more here:
American Heart Association
John Hopkins Medicine

Like dengue fever, dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF) is spread by mosquitoes.

DHF is characterized by a fever that lasts about a week. Following the fever, the patient may also develop nausea, vomiting, shortness of breath, and abdominal pain.

A dangerous period of DHF is when the patient’s capillaries become excessively permeable. This allows extra fluid to leak out of the blood vessels and into other areas of the body, causing complications such as ascites and pleural effusions. Ultimately, this may lead to organ failure, shock, and death.

You can learn more here:
World Health Organization
MedlinePlus
Center for Disease Control and Prevention

Dengue fever is theorized to have originated in monkeys, transferring to humans between 100 to 800 years ago. Before the 1970s, dengue fever was found primarily in 9 countries with little geographical spread. Since then, dengue fever has spread to over 100 countries and is now affecting an estimated 50-100 million people per year.

As dengue fever is mosquito-borne, it is endemic, returning every year with the rise of the mosquito population in affected areas. The WHO estimates that approximately 40% of the world population is at risk for dengue fever.

You can learn more here:
World Health Organization
MedlinePlus
Center for Disease Control and Prevention

Sputum is mucus coughed up from your respiratory tract.

Similar to chronic bronchitis, acute bronchitis can be treated symptomatically. As long as the patient is getting enough oxygen, the body will recover on its own. Cough suppressants such as codeine and dextromethorphan might be prescribed. NSAIDs can help with pain relief. Antibiotics have not been proven to have any huge effect.

Senior citizens, young children, people with heart or lung disease, as well as smokers are at risk for bronchitis.

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MedScape
MayoClinic
PubMed
The eruption usually occurs a few hours after bathing in seawater. About 98% of patients suffer from pruritus (translation: itchiness) which usually lasts about 1 to 2 weeks. It can also cause fever, nausea, diarrhea, and abdominal pain, although more rarely and usually in children as opposed to adults.

Seabather’s eruption is basically an allergic reaction and will generally not require hospitalization. The specific larvae the reaction is to can vary by area. Long Island waters contain the larvae of sea anemone, while Florida waters contain thimble jellyfish larvae.

You can learn more here:
MedScape
NYC Dept of Health