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Calcification is the result of calcium deposits on the tissues of the breast. This can occur as a single and large accumulation called 'micro- calcification 'or smaller sized dots at many places called 'macro-calcification'. The former is not malignant but the later can become cancerous.
When calcium phosphate crystals and collagen join together, they develop into calcium deposits. They are also formed when the nipple or the mammary itself gets blocked with milk or tissues of cysts. Sometimes stitches or implants in breasts could also lead to such deposits.
When the hormonal levels lower during menopause, fibro adenomas grow in the breast and calcium can get deposited on them. Cysts, which are sacs filled with fluid develop in the breast during the 30s or 40s, and tend to disappear after menopause. If they persist, calcium can get deposited on them and turn cancerous.
It is not possible to detect calcium deposits by physical examination. Mammography is done to study the pattern, size and shapes of the deposits which appear as white spots. The malignancy is confirmed by biopsy. Samples are collected for tests using either needles or by insertion of a wire in the affected area.
Calcium deposits on fibroadenomas disappear on their own in due course of time. If a cyst becomes painful, one can have the fluid extracted for relief. Blocks in the nipples or mammary duct would need surgery. If the biopsy of cysts or lumps declares them malignant, treatment using radiation, chemotherapy and medication would have to be undertaken. Mammography every 6 months or yearly should be done to monitor the status of such deposits.
2. Causes for Lactation without Pregnancy
Lactation is usually associated with pregnancy or child-birth. However there have been cases of women lactating while not being in either of these conditions. Most of them were found to be in the age group of 16 to 40 yrs, well suited for bearing children. Some of the reasons for such occurrences are:
Hormonal change: hormonal levels undergo fluctuation at different stages in a woman's life. When the levels of a hormone called 'prolactin' rises above the normal, the breasts begin lactation.
Miscarriage: when the conception does not continue, it causes miscarriage. This generally results in hormonal imbalance in the body which can begin lactation. Sometimes a miscarriage goes unnoticed and gets tagged as heavy bleeding during a particular cycle. Such cases also have to be reported to avoid other complications.
Stimulation of nipples: sucking of the nipples causes the brain to send a signal to the breast to start lactation. Mothers of adopted children yearning for the bonding with the infant opt for breast feeding using such stimulation. This can be done with hands or help from a person already nursing which will exactly imitate the suckling of the infant. Suckling for 20 minutes, eight to ten times a day for three weeks stimulates lactation.
Drugs: sometimes when the lactation is found to be insufficient, certain drugs like domperidone, sulpiride or raglan are prescribed. They increase the prolactin levels in the body causing more lactation.
Herbs: fennel, anise seeds, fenugreek, goat's rue, cumin seeds and hops are found to have the ability to start lactation even without pregnancy. It is advisable to consume them in limited amounts.
3. Treatment for Blocked Fallopian Tubes
Fallopian tubes are on either sides of the uterus. They connect the uterus and ovaries. They are the path that the eggs take to travel from the ovaries where they are formed to reach the uterus where they are lodged after fertilization. Blocked tubes would lead to infertility called 'tubular factor infertility' .This can also lead to problems in the female reproductive system.
Blockage can be detected by various techniques like, hyaterosalpingogram, exploratory laparoscopic surgery or ultrasound. Some of the options for treating such blocked fallopian tubes and increase the chances of conception include:
Salpingostomy: this is done if the ends of the tubes are blocked. A new opening in the tube lying closest to the ovaries is made to increase chances of conceiving.
Tubal reanastomosis: this treatment is done if a part of the tube is damaged as a result of some other disease in the body. Here, the defective part of the tube is cut and the healthy ends stitched back.
Frimbioplasty: if the end of the tube closest to the ovaries is scarred, the tubes will get blocked. This treatment involves rebuilding these ends and opening up the blockage.
Salpingectomy: this procedure is adopted when the tubes are infected by hydrosalphinx. Here, the tubes are removed. This increases the conception chances by IVF procedure.
Selective tubal cannulaton: this treatment is adopted when part of the tube close to the uterus is blocked. Here a catheter or cannula is inserted into the tube through the cervix.
From the many option available, one must choose a particular treatment procedure only on consultation with a specialist.
4. How to Lower Heart Rate Naturally
Heart is a vital organ which pumps blood to ensure that every cell of the body functions well. If the heart works more to pump the same amount of blood, this condition is called high blood pressure or heart-rate. Treating this with medication has side effects. One can choose from the following natural methods instead:
Exercise: regular exercising will build a strong heart which will pump at a much slower pace to supply the required amount of blood. Cardiovascular exercise like swimming, brisk walking, jogging and cycling are ideal.
Diet: a balanced diet rich in protein, low in sodium and having sufficient amounts of magnesium, potassium, folic acid and calcium is ideal. Food items like fig, spinach, fresh fruit, raisin and whole grain are natural agents that reduce heart rates.
Avoid obesity: an over-weight person should avoid food rich in fats. This must be accompanied by regular exercising.
Lower caffeine intake: caffeine is a stimulant that increases heart rate. One must avoid caffeine containing items like coffee, sodas, pain-killers, diet-tablet and some teas.
Quit smoking: smokers induce toxic materials in to the body which lessen the stamina. A weak body will work harder to complete the same task causing the heart to beat at a higher rate. quitting this habit will ensure a healthy heart.
Avoid stress: high stress levels will cause the heart rate to increase. Keep stress away by meditation, yoga, music or just relaxing the body by lying down without any activity.
Eat dark chocolate: consuming moderate levels of cocoa rich items like chocolate drink, chocolates, and confectionaries can keep the heart rate in control.
5. Heart Transplant Life Expectancy
Heart transplant is a surgical procedure wherein a diseased heart is replaced by a healthy heart. Blood circulation is controlled by an external pump while the donor heart is connected to the major blood vessels.
Heart transplant improves the expectancy and quality of life. Only those who suffer from terminal heart disease may opt for it.
Some issues related to this procedure are:
Life expectancy: from the studies conducted, life expectancy is seen to vary from over a year to almost 24 years. Factors influencing this include; age, and compliance of recipient and match of immunology between recipient and donor.
Success rates: health problems already existing in the patient directly affect the success of a transplant. Factors that may reduce success rate include; being above 60 yrs, having high blood pressure in pulmonary vessel, being on ventilator, having undergone a transplant previously or having high antibody levels for panels. Despite these conditions, the success rate for the procedure is almost 90%. The patient will have a fair chance to survive for at least a year if the first 30 days post surgery goes without complications.
Risk: it is natural for the body to reject ant foreign material by fighting it with the immune system. It is the case with a donor's heart also. Hence, suppressor drugs are prescribed which prevent rejection. Regular tests of the transplanted heart's tissues along with routine ECG, EKG AND blood tests are done once every 3 to 4 months. While suppressors are a boon for donated heart's acceptance, it is a bane considering the associated side effects like; susceptibility to infections, cancer and ulcers.
6. Natural Blood Thinners That You Can Take In Lieu Of Medication
Blood thinners are medication prescribed for avoiding clot formation in the blood. This is a daily medication for patients who might have undergone angioplasty for removal of blocks in blood vessels or veins or have suffered a heart attack.
The 2 types of blood thinners are 'anti-platelet' (like aspirin) and anti-coagulant' (like heparin). The former prevents platelets in blood from clumping while the later assists chemical reaction in the body which delays clot formation.
'salicylate' is a substance found in some natural foods which helps in keeping the blood thin. Essentially it blocks the vitamin-K and thins the blood. Some of the naturally available sources of salicylate are; ginger, paprika, thyme, turmeric, oregano, dill, cinnamon, peppermint, licorice and cayenne pepper. They have the ability of reducing inflammation in the blood.
Fish oil has gained popularity for its ability to increase the good cholesterol levels, improve immunity, improve functioning of the brain, and relieve pain in rheumatoid arthritis patients. Two fatty acids namely, EPA and DHA available in fish oil are easily absorbed by the blood. They help in reduction of inflammation in blood.
Fish oil is easily available across the counter in capsule form for keeping general good health.
These foods are already known for their medicinal value. Their effectiveness as blood thinners have made it convenient for people to consume some of them in moderate levels to keep major heart related problems at bay for a long time. Although they are easily available, one must be sure to consume these natural products after consulting their doctor especially if they are already under medication for some heart ailment.
7. Causes of Poor Blood Circulation in the Legs
The heart is a vital organ which pumps blood to different parts of our body. Circulation of blood involves a continuous process of supplying good or oxygenated blood to different parts of the body through the arteries and return of bad or deoxygenated blood from these parts back to the heart.
Any malfunction in this circulation results in affecting the particular part or the whole body adversely. Body tissues and nerves get severely affected.
Poor circulation affects the normal functioning of legs especially in the older people. 'Peripheral Vascular Disease' (PVD) is the main cause for poor blood circulation in the legs. This includes arteries and veins located close to the periphery of our heart. When fatty substance gets deposited on the walls of blood vessels and hardens them, it becomes difficult for the blood to flow through them. If this occurs on the blood vessel connected to the legs, it results in poor circulation.
People indulging in smoking, imbalanced diet, or incorrect postures are prone to develop this medical condition.
Some of the other reasons are; high blood pressure, hyper-tension, high cholesterol, over-weight, varicose vein, diabetes, heart diseases, stroke, kidney disease, aneurysms, phlebitis or pregnancy.
The earliest symptoms include, cramps in the legs, occasional numb feeling, and a continuous feeling of fatigue in the feet and leg. Sometimes, excorticating pain can be experienced while running, walking, or even without any activity. Appearance of blue or black colored spots or swelling of either the feet or even the entire leg may occur. Some people even complain of cold feet or hands.
Such condition would need quick medical treatment.
8. What is a Heart Murmur?
The human heart beat is considered to occur in two parts, 'lub' followed by 'dub'. The former occurs when the tricuspid valve and mitral valve close at the commencement of systolic stroke. The later occurs when the aortic valve and pulmonary valve close at the commencement of diastolic stroke.
Any other sound along with the lub-dub sound is regarded unusual. A whistling or swish sound coming along with lub-dub sound is called 'murmur'.
An innocent murmur occurs when there is any change in the heart due to age, pregnancy or surgery, but not a disease. In this condition, either extra blood flows through the heart or the rate of flow of blood through the heart is above normal.
An abnormal murmur occurs when there is a defect in the heart like; its structure, walls and valves, or veins and arteries. Mostly children suffer from such conditions at birth. This is manifested as congenital heart defects, holes in the heart, damage in valves or infections.
Diagnosis of a patient starts with physical examination and checking the family and medical history. The murmur is evaluated for its pitch; high, medium or low and length for different physical activities. Routine tests like, ECG, X-ray, cardiac catheterization and echo-cardiograph are taken.
Heart murmur is a warning for checking the health of our heart.
No treatment is required for innocent murmurs in children or patients suffering from hyperthyroidism or anemia. Such condition disappears in due course of time. But regular check-up is necessary.
Abnormal murmurs need treatment once diagnosed. This could be simple medication or even a surgery.
9. Normal Calorie Intake for Females
Energy is required by our body for performing various functions. This is derived from the nutrients present in the food-intake. The amount of energy present in different foods is measured with the unit called 'calorie'.
Nutrients like carbohydrates, proteins, minerals and fatty acids are present in different quantities in different foods. A balanced diet will comprise an ideal combination of these nutrients. These are broken down by the digestive juices in to simpler forms that can be easily absorbed by the blood and supplied to all parts of the body.
The ideal calorie intake by women is between 1500 to 2000 calories per day. This could differ from one person to another depending on factors like, weight, height, general health and lifestyles. Depending on the requirement, calorie intake can be prescribed for maintaining, gaining or losing weight.
BMR (basal metabolic rate) determines the least amount of calories required for basic body functioning. This calculation caters for internal body functions only.
One pound of body weight is equivalent to 3500 calories. In order to gain weight, one must increase the calorie intake above the average and lessen physical activity to burn lesser energy.
For losing weight, one must consume foods with lesser calorific level, and include more work outs for burning more energy of the body.
Women must have nutrition with sufficient calorie for good health owing to the many hormonal changes their body undergoes. Exercise should be a part of daily routine. While this can burn energy at faster rate, it also works well to increase appetite. The changes in calorie intake to gain or loose weight should be gradual.
10. How to Tighten Your Vagina After Childbirth
Some women silently suffer from an embarrassing situation of having a loose vagina. Although this is a delicate issue for discussion, a lady should try to resolve the condition by consultation rather than suffering it silently.
Generally women suffer from this condition after child birth. It can have serious health repercussions like involuntary urge to urinate when she has some other involuntary action like cough. This can also become a cause for unsatisfactory relation with the spouse. On consultation with a doctor, one can find solutions from the following options:
Kegel exercises: post child birth, this exercise routine makes the pelvic floor muscle stronger. Moreover the muscle gets better elasticity and enhances pleasure during inter-courses. This controls bladder movement thus preventing urine leakage.
Neocontrol therapy: specially designed chair having magnetic field is used for this purpose. The magnetism stimulates the muscles of the pelvic region. Regular sittings for 20 to 30 minutes each for at least 8 weeks will be required.
Vaginal cones: cones of different weights, starting first with the lightest are used. Here the cone is inserted in to the vagina and held there by tightening the pelvic muscle. This is done for 15 minutes twice a day.
Electric stimulation: an electric probe is inserted in to the vagina and electric current is passed. This alternately contracts and relaxes the muscle which tightens in due course of time. Sittings once every day or once every four days for 20 minutes each can be undertaken.
One can opt for one or a combination of the above mentioned therapies for effective results.