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lizatorborg (@lizatorborg)

Activity by lizatorborg

lizatorborg (@lizatorborg) posted · Sat, Mar 28 10:00am · View  

Mayo Clinic Q & A: Presbyopia normal in aging, but regular eye exams are recommended

DEAR MAYO CLINIC: I am 43 and have started having trouble with my vision while reading. I know this is common for someone my age, and I do have “readers” that I sometimes use, but am hoping to put off regular glasses as long as possible. Am I doing harm by waiting? How often should I have my eyes checked?woman with glasses reading a book, vision

ANSWER: It is true that the vision changes you are noticing are very common in people in their 40s. But you are not harming your eyes by waiting to get reading glasses. You may find it useful to get an eye exam now, though, to see if glasses could be helpful and to check for other eye problems. Regular eye exams are recommended for adults beginning at age 40.

As we age, our eyes gradually lose their ability to focus on objects nearby. The medical term for this process is presbyopia. It typically becomes noticeable in the early to mid-40s and continues to get worse through the mid-60s. Many people become aware of presbyopia when vision seems blurry at a normal reading distance, and they have to hold reading material farther away to see it clearly. [...]

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lizatorborg (@lizatorborg) posted · Tue, Mar 24 1:00am · View  

Mayo Clinic Q and A: Genetic, environmental factors appear to play a role in risk for RA

DEAR MAYO CLINIC: My daughter, 31, was recently diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. Do doctors know what causes the disease, especially at a young age? Will she need to be on medication for the rest of her life?close up of hands with rheumatoid arthritis

ANSWER: The precise cause of rheumatoid arthritis, or RA, remains unclear. However, both genetic and environmental factors appear to play a role in raising a person’s RA risk. Because we do not know the exact cause, we do not have a cure for RA. Most people with this disease do need long-term treatment.

Rheumatoid arthritis is a kind of disease known as an autoimmune disorder. These disorders happen when your immune system mistakenly attacks your body’s own tissues. In RA, the immune system attacks the lining of the membranes that surround your joints, called the synovium. That causes inflammation. The inflammation, in turn, thickens the synovium, which can eventually destroy the cartilage and bone within the joint. The tendons and ligaments that hold the joint together weaken and stretch. Gradually, the joint loses its shape and alignment. [...]

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lizatorborg (@lizatorborg) posted · Sat, Mar 21 10:00am · View  

Mayo Clinic Q & A: Effects of corticosteroid injection dependent on health, symptoms

illustration of spine injection, corticosteroid injection DEAR MAYO CLINIC: I have osteoarthritis in my spine. About a month ago, I got a steroid shot in my lower back because my doctor said it might help with stiffness and pain in my back and legs. It worked wonderfully, and my symptoms are gone now. How does this medicine work? If the pain comes back, could another one of these shots take care of it again? Or is my arthritis gone?

ANSWER: The injection you received likely contained a corticosteroid medication. These powerful drugs can be very useful in treating many conditions that cause joint pain, including osteoarthritis.

How long the effects of a corticosteroid injection last can vary quite a bit, depending on your health and the severity of your symptoms. If your pain returns, you may be able to get another injection. Because of the possibility of serious side effects, though, the number of injections and how often you can receive them is limited. Unfortunately your arthritis is not gone, even if you are not currently having any symptoms. [...]

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lizatorborg (@lizatorborg) posted · Thu, Mar 19 10:35am · View  

Mayo Clinic Q and A: Childhood vaccination schedule highly effective preventing diseases

DEAR MAYO CLINIC: Why do children need so many vaccines in their first two years of life? Isn’t it okay and even safer to wait until they are a bit older to give them the recommended vaccinations?

ANSWER: The current childhood vaccination schedule has been studied extensively. It is safe. It is also highly effective at preventing a variety of serious diseases. To offer the best protection against those diseases, I strongly urge you to have your child vaccinated on time, according to the recommended schedule.little girl getting flu mist vaccine

Babies need multiple vaccines because infectious diseases can cause serious health problems in infants. For a short time after they are born, antibodies from their mothers help protect newborns from many diseases. But that immunity begins to fade quickly, with some immunity lasting only about one month after birth.

The vaccination schedule that is recommended now has been studied and found safe and effective against the diseases babies face at the time they are getting the vaccines. A delayed schedule is a delay in protection against some diseases that are very serious, and in many cases life-threatening. [...]

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Jill Himli (@jillhimli) responded:

Dr. Jacobson is an excellent pediatrician. When my oldest son was diagnosed with pertussis last year he was amazing with both of my boys. My youngest had an ear infection at the time of the visit and Dr. Jacobson observed him in ways that I hadn't seen anyone do before. He checked my sons ears while his head was on my husband's shoulder and checked his nose & throat while he was lying on a [...]

Posted Thu, Mar 19 at 10:35am EDT · View
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lizatorborg (@lizatorborg) posted · Sat, Mar 14 10:00am · View  

Mayo Clinic Q and A: Herniated disk symptoms often effectively treated without surgery

illustration of herniated disk and a normal disk in the spineDEAR MAYO CLINIC: What is the typical treatment and recovery time for a herniated disk? At what point should surgery be considered?

ANSWER: In many cases, pain and other symptoms caused by a herniated disk resolve with time and self-care measures. When medical treatment is required, therapy that doesn’t involve surgery often is all that’s needed to effectively treat herniated disk symptoms. However, if your symptoms significantly limit your day-to-day activities, if you have nerve damage due to a herniated disk, or if your symptoms cannot be controlled with other treatment, then spine surgery may be necessary.

Your spinal disks are the cushions between the individual bones, called vertebrae, that make up your spine. The disks have a soft center within a tougher exterior. A herniated disk happens when some of the center pushes out through a crack in the outer portion of the disk. A herniated disk may irritate or compress a nearby spinal nerve root. The result can be back pain, along with pain, numbness or weakness in an arm or leg. [...]

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lizatorborg (@lizatorborg) posted · Tue, Mar 10 4:00am · View  

Mayo Clinic Q and A: For adults with scoliosis, treatment based on severity of symptoms

scoliosis of the adult spine - illustrationDEAR MAYO CLINIC: How effective is surgery to treat scoliosis in adults? What does the surgery involve?

ANSWER: Fortunately for most adults who have scoliosis, the condition can be successfully managed without surgery. For some who suffer from an overly tilted or arthritic spine, though, surgery can be very effective at relieving symptoms. The surgery is a complex procedure and can include removing some spinal joints and connecting two or more of the bones in the spine together to properly balance the spine and improve quality of life.

Scoliosis is a three-dimensional change in the normal shape of the spine that leads to excessive sideways or forward curves. It most often develops in children during the growth spurt just before puberty. But some adults can suffer from scoliosis, too. [...]

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lizatorborg (@lizatorborg) posted · Sat, Mar 7 2:01pm · View  

Mayo Clinic Q & A: Regular monitoring can help manage symptoms of PSC

DEAR MAYO CLINIC: My husband, 48, was diagnosed last month with primary sclerosing cholangitis. Does this mean he will eventually need a liver transplant, or do some people with the disease never get to that point? He has had irritable bowel syndrome for years; are the two conditions related?

Graphic Illustration of PSC

Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis

ANSWER: Primary sclerosing cholangitis, or PSC, is not associated with irritable bowel syndrome. But it can be related to another condition broadly termed inflammatory bowel disease, or more specifically, ulcerative colitis. Your husband should be tested for ulcerative colitis if that has not already been done. Many people who have PSC do eventually need a liver transplant. That is not the case for everyone, though. Regular monitoring and follow-up care can help manage symptoms and catch complications of PSC early.

PSC affects the ducts that carry the digestive liquid bile from your liver to your small intestine. In people who have PSC, inflammation causes scars within the bile ducts. The scars make the ducts hard and narrow. Over time, this can cause serious liver damage.

PSC often progresses slowly. As it advances, the disease may result in repeated infections and can lead to bile duct tumors or liver tumors. Eventually, PSC may cause the liver to fail. On average it takes about 10 years until most people with PSC need a liver transplant. However, the rate at which PSC progresses varies widely. Some people with this disease live a normal lifespan without every progressing to liver failure or needing a transplant. [...]

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lizatorborg (@lizatorborg) posted · Tue, Mar 3 6:00am · View  

Mayo Clinic Q & A: Chronic sinusitis symptoms resemble a cold, but last months

DEAR MAYO CLINIC: I’ve had an awful cold for months. My doctor recommends that I be tested for chronic sinusitis. What would that involve? How is chronic sinusitis treated?illustration of person's face with sinus infection and inflammation

ANSWER: Sinusitis is inflammation of the sinuses, which are the air-containing pockets in the skull and facial bones around your nose. Chronic sinusitis develops when inflammation lasts for more than 12 weeks. Testing involves a visit to an ear, nose and throat, or ENT, doctor who will examine your sinuses. Most chronic sinusitis can be managed with medical therapy. However, if your symptoms or the inflammation do not respond to medical therapy, surgery may be necessary. The goal of treatment is to restore sinus health and function.

Symptoms of chronic sinusitis often resemble a cold. A cold is usually caused by a viral infection and is often accompanied by a runny or stuffed-up nose, sneezing, sore throat, watery eyes and a fever. This kind of acute viral sinusitis usually lasts seven to 10 days.

In rare instances, you may get a bacterial infection as a result of a cold, resulting in acute bacterial sinusitis. If that happens, cold symptoms get worse after seven to 10 days. You also may have yellow or green nasal drainage, pain in your face or teeth, and a fever. Acute sinusitis lasts up to four weeks. When symptoms persist for more than 12 weeks, you may have chronic sinusitis. But some cases of chronic sinusitis can develop subtly, without a preceding viral infection. [...]

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