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Showing posts from January, 2017

The Tsunami Effect of Opioid Dependence

In one of the first studies of its kind, the FAIR Health group released some very interesting information last fall.  This group used claims data from privately insured persons to illustrate some obvious, but very shocking conclusions about privately insured persons who are regular opioid users.
The data from this study looked at (non-identifying) data from insurers who cover upwards of 150 million patients. They noticed the following observations:
From 2007-2014, medical services for people with opioid dependence diagnoses skyrocketed more than 3,000%
Much of the increase in opioid dependence occurred since 2011, even though this period was marked by increased attention to the problem and a growing concern amongst advocates as they called on doctors to reduce the number of opioid prescriptions.
Younger patients (19-35 years) were most likely to be diagnosed as “opioid dependent” relative to other age groups. (Dependence is defined by symptoms such as increased tolerance, withdrawal or un…

Everything You Wanted To Know About Pain But Were Afraid To Ask...

Today I am sharing an article from PhillyVoice. I don't want to paraphrase it because if I did,something would be lost in translation.  All I want to say about it is that we often wonder about these aspects of  the human body and pain...but no one really addresses these things. That is, until now.

You can read this short but informative article by clicking here.




Sources: PhillyVoice; Pixabay

Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS)

Have you ever experienced an uncontrollable urge to move your legs? If you have, one possible cause is restless leg syndrome (RLS).  This uncomfortable condition is very common, particularly in adults. The condition usually comes about after a period of rest--sitting at a desk, sleeping, etc.  Usually moving around a little bit helps to calm things down.  Typically, symptoms tend to be worse in the evening hours.




This condition comes under the auspices of chronic pain syndromes because it tends to be chronic, seeing that at present there is no known cure.  It is not overtly painful, but the restless sensation is described as "unpleasant."Some people describe it as creeping or throbbing. A doctor can diagnose RLS based on patient history, physical exam, and laboratory tests (especially for iron levels).

It's not clear what causes RLS but it's thought to be an imbalance of hormones in the brain.  Heredity may play a role, and sometimes women first notice the issue dur…

Are You A Victim Of Learned Helplessness?

Today's post is a little different..exploring the idea of "learned helplessness." This behavior phenomenon was discovered by two psychologists who conducted a series of experiments in animals a few decades ago. There were three groups of dogs in the study; two of the groups were trained to overcome a painful stimulus by different means, while the third group did not receive any of this training.  In the next phase of the testing, all of the dogs were subject to this stimulus while in a confined environment. The first two groups of dogs used the skills they had learned previously, while the third group did nothing because they believed that there was nothing they could do to prevent this unpleasantry.

This behavior can be observed in humans as well--those who try to quit smoking, lose weight, go back to school, get a new job, etc.  Some people have the skills to overcome the obstacles and succeed in these ventures, while others just sulk in their "learned helplessne…

Rehab For Body And Brain For Leg Injury

A new report out of Ohio State University states that athletes (and others) who suffer a knee injury known as ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) tear require treatment and rehab for the knee, but retraining of the brain as well.  According to the researchers, the way that the brain controls the knee joint changes following the injury.




Typical treatment of this type of injury requires surgery, followed by a period of physical rehabilitation.  This report followed persons who were treated following ACL tear and found that the brain relies more on vision than on instinct following this period. This is most crucial to certain athletes who rely more heavily on instinct during game play.  The team found that the re-training of the brain could be accomplished using strobe-effect glasses during therapy in order to help these persons regain instinct-based performance.

You can read about this in more detail by clicking here.

Sources: WexnerMedical/OSU; Wikimedia

How To Relieve SInusitis...The Drug Free Way!

Attention allergy and rhinitis sufferers!  Before you know it it will be spring, and all those pesky nasal symptoms will return.  If you suffer from frequent sinus pressure and sinus headaches, today's post is just what the doctor ordered!

This method is a beautiful thing because it can be used if you are already on medicine for your symptoms...or not.  Oral decongestants are effective, but they are not a good idea for people with hypertension or heart problems.  They can also cause the sensation of a racing heart (tachycardia) and can interfere with a good night's sleep.

So, without further ado, here is a graphic from Top Ten Remedies that will show you a very effective way to deal with this problem:




Sources: TopTenRemedies.com


New Study Suggests Shoulder Pain Can Be Indicative Of Heart Disease

A recent study released by the University of Utah illustrates that shoulder problems can emanate from injury, but that might not always be the case.  While shoulder problems can stem from repeated physical stressors, heart disease can also be a cause.

The research behind this claim is based on a study of over 1200 laborers.  The team found that those who already had risk factors for heart disease, such as hypertension, high cholesterol, and diabetes also showed risk for shoulder injury.  Some of these had more than one cardiac risk factor, and some of those with prior shoulder injury had subsequent shoulder injuries!

The authors suggest that controlling the risk factors of heart disease may also help prevent this type of injury....that is certainly food for thought!

You can read the original story behind this post by clicking here.

Sources: Science Daily; Wikimedia