Winter Diseases

Winter Diseases

Nov 24th, 2016

Archive for 2016

Winter Diseases

Thursday, November 24th, 2016

As we welcome the weather of foggy mornings and chilly evenings we are happy to get a break from the otherwise hot Mumbai climate. Winter is almost there in India and it’s the time to rejoice! It’s the season of endless cups of “Adrak chai” and strong coffee. It is also that time of the year filled the approaching holidays and the wedding season. However for many the winter season brings a lot of diseases with the onset of low temperatures.

During winters, the body heat usually experiences a drop as the environment cools. At the same time, the body is adjusting to the new climate. As a result, the change in the process is demonstrated through a number of diseases. While some people are more susceptible to catching these common diseases most can be avoided by just a few precautions:

Some common winter diseases in India:

Colds and Flu: Contrary to popular belief, cold and flu symptoms are not a direct result of falling temperatures. Many individuals suffer from bacterial or viral induced cold and flu symptoms resulting from a compromised immune system. In the winter, when temperatures begin to fall, the body naturally begins to work in overdrive to regulate the normal body temperature. Try to offset this by layering the body in a variety of warm clothes which will help your body in regulating the body temperature. Flu generally gets transmitted through the air in the environment. Yet, keeping yourself shielded from chilling winds is always helpful.

Coughs: The dust, dryness and cold winds in the winter all add to cough symptoms. Having beverages of extreme temperatures also triggers a throat infection. Always wear a helmet or use scarves to protect yourself from the dust while rising two wheelers.

Itchy skin: A lot of people with sensitive skin develop itchy during winter. The best way to take care of this is by applying coconut, olive or almond oil every night. Cold temperature with low humidity results in this.

Headache: Cold winds sometimes play havoc on your head. Hence, shield yourself with a warm muffler or scarf. If you drive a two-wheeler in India, invest in a good helmet and a muffler if you want to stay away with persistent headaches during winter.

Respiratory ailments: In the winter season, the air molecules become thinner and more restricted. As a result, individuals suffering from respiratory conditions, such as asthma or COPD, may find it increasingly difficult to breathe during extreme cold temperatures. To negate this effect, when venturing into the outdoors, layering the face and chest in warm clothing and scarves will help. For some individuals, however, the winter season brings about a change in activity requiring a limitation to only indoor events. The cold and dry air leads to tightening of airways and makes it even worse while breathing. Making some changes can surely be helpful. Keep your homes smoke free as smoke can travel even through closed doors.

Heart Attacks: Most of us are unaware of the fact that winters is one of the prime seasons for heart attacks. As the temperature falls, the arteries become constricted making it difficult for the heart to pump the blood. Experts suggest, people over the age of 30 should avoid exhausting themselves in winter season. Also, do not overeat food during winters and preferably eat in small quantities.

Joint Pain: There is no scientific evidence to joint pains in winter season but there are many people who do suffer from the pain in winter. One of the most common remedies to get relief from joint pains is keeping yourselves and your feet warm. Also, wear two or three pairs of thin clothing instead of one pair of heavy warm clothes. Exercising is another way to get rid of all joint and muscle stiffness during winter time without overdoing it. Basking in the sun is also a great way to get rid of the joint aches.

Sinusitis: Congestion, headaches, coughing, running nose as well as post nasal drip symptoms make people feel miserable during winters. Sinus problems occur when homes are closed and there is no proper ventilation. To stay clear of sinusitis this season, make sure you get enough rest, eat healthy, drink plenty of fluids and avoid dust.

Winter is the season of fun and celebration. Don’t let yourself down with one of the diseases that keeps you away from experiencing these joys. Some precautions can keep these diseases at bay to get most out of this season.

World Diabetes Day

Monday, November 14th, 2016

Diabetes is a chronic, devastating and sometimes fatal disease, in which the body either cannot produce insulin or cannot properly use the insulin it produces. Insulin is a hormone that controls the amount of glucose (sugar) in the blood. Diabetes leads to high blood sugar levels, which can damage organs, blood vessels and nerves. The body needs insulin to use sugar as an energy source.

14th November was chosen as “World Diabetes Day” as it coincides with Frederick Banting’s birthday, the man who, along with Charles Best and John James Rickard Macleod, conceived the idea that led to the discovery of insulin in 1922. This was a remarkable achievement in the treatment of diabetes.

Types of Diabetes:

Type 1 diabetes

Type 1 diabetes occurs when the immune system mistakenly attacks and kills the beta cells of the pancreas. No, or very little, insulin is released into the body. As a result, sugar builds up in the blood instead of being used as energy. About 5 per cent of people with diabetes have type 1 diabetes. It generally develops in childhood or adolescence, but can develop in adulthood. Type 1 diabetes is always treated with insulin. Meal planning also helps with keeping blood sugar at the right levels.

Type 2 diabetes

Type 2 diabetes occurs when the body can’t properly use the insulin that is released or does not make enough insulin. As a result, sugar builds up in the blood instead of being used as energy. About 95 per cent of the people with diabetes have type 2 diabetes. It often develops in adults, but children can be affected.

Depending on the severity of type 2 diabetes, it may be managed through physical activity and meal planning, or may also require medications and/or insulin to control blood sugar more effectively.

Gestational diabetes

A third type of diabetes, gestational diabetes, is a temporary condition that occurs during pregnancy. It affects approximately two to four per cent of all pregnancies and involves an increased risk of developing diabetes for both mother and child.

Diabetes and some complications

Having high blood sugar can cause diabetes-related complications, like chronic kidney disease, foot problems, non-traumatic lower limb (leg, foot, toe, etc.) amputation, eye disease (retinopathy) that can lead to blindness, heart attack, stroke, anxiety, nerve damage, and erectile dysfunction (men).

Diabetes-related complications can be very serious and even life-threatening. The earlier a person is diagnosed with diabetes the better it is. Properly managing blood sugar levels reduces the risk of developing them.

Did you know?

Nearly one in two, 46 per cent of the 415 million adults living with diabetes are unaware of their condition. Most of these cases are type 2 diabetes. World Diabetes Day aims to highlight the need to screen, diagnose and provide appropriate treatment to people with diabetes across countries. “Eyes on Diabetes” is the theme of World Diabetes Day this year. It is a call for action to screen people at the risk of type 2 diabetes.

Risk factors for developing diabetes:
  • Excess weight
  • Family history
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Unhealthy diet
  • Poor nutrition during pregnancy
  • High Blood pressure
  • Ethnicity

Early lifestyle intervention can protect your future health and reduce health costs required to treat complications.Up to 70% of type 2 diabetes cases can be prevented or delayed by adopting healthier lifestyles.

Diabetes, some facts you need to know:
  • Type 2 diabetes often does not have any symptoms.
  • Only about five percent of all people with diabetes have type 1 diabetes.
  • If you are at risk, type 2 diabetes can be prevented with moderate weight loss and 30 minutes of moderate physical activity (such as brisk walking) each day.
  • Diabetes is the leading cause of blindness in working-age adults.
  • People with diabetes are twice as likely to develop heart disease than someone without diabetes.
  • Bariatric surgery can reduce the symptoms of diabetes in obese people.
Diabetes and India

The number of people with diabetes in India has nearly quadrupled since 1980.There strong evidence that Indians have a greater degree of insulin resistance and a stronger genetic predisposition to diabetes. There were 69.1 million cases of diabetes in India reported in 2015.

Get yourself checked this World Diabetes Day. As a nation we must be more aware about the risks of developing Type 2 diabetes and take measures to prevent it. Visit Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital for a check up of your blood sugar levels. Our centre of Diabetes and Obesity is well equipped to take care of all diabetes patients. Please check the below link for further details:

Cancer Awareness Day

Friday, November 11th, 2016

Cancer is a malignant growth or tumour resulting from an uncontrolled division of cells. It can start at any place in the body. It starts when cells grow out of control and crowd out normal cells. This makes it hard for the body to work the way it should.

Cancer can affect all living cells in the body, at all ages and in both genders. The causation is multi factorial and the disease process differs at different sites.

It is known that over one-third of cancers are preventable, and one-third potentially curable provided they are diagnosed early in their course. The control of cancer requires the effective implementation of knowledge with awareness.

Some facts, risks and preventions about cancer:
  • There are 2-2.5 million cases of Cancer Prevalent in India at any point in time.
  • 7-9 lac cancers are detected each year in India- on an average 8-10 cancers are detected daily.
  • Cancers are the 2nd leading cause of death in India that is likely to double by 2015 and triple by 2030.
  • More than 2/3rd of cancer cases are related to life style factors, hence preventable.
  • More than 1/3rd cancers (2 out of every 5) are tobacco related and other due to faulty diet habits and social habits.
  • The unhealthy lifestyle that increases the risk of cancer is tobacco consumption (cigarette smoking, chewing tobacco etc.) increased consumption of animal fats & oils, sedentary life style, obesity, alcohol consumption and exposure to toxic chemicals.
  • The early the cancer is detected the better is the cure rate and prognosis.
  • Most of the cancers are silent for long time and give no initial warning.
  • Once cancer produces evident symptoms and signs, it is already in advanced stage and usually difficult to treat.

Being aware about Cancer is the need of the hour. In majority of the cases, cancer is detected in the advanced stage. Treatment of any cancer in advanced stage is difficult, prolonged and expensive. Treatment results in India are about 20% less than what is observed for similar conditions in more developed countries, mostly due to late diagnosis and inappropriate treatment. Sadly, 2/3rds of the cancers are detected in the advanced stage.

Get yourself checked by a doctor if you have any of these symptoms:
  • Change in bowel or bladder habits
  • A wound that doesn’t heal
  • Unusual bleeding or discharge from any natural orifice or weight loss
  • Thickening or lump in breast or elsewhere
  • Ingestion difficulty in swallowing
  • Obvious change in wart or mole
  • Nagging cough or hoarseness of the voice
How can we help raise awareness about Cancer?
  • Make healthy food choices.Cancer risk can be reduced by following a fresh healthy plant based diet of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes. Consumption of salty, fatty and processed food items.
  • Say No to Tobacco. Tobacco chewing or consumption of cigarettes drastically increases your chance of developing cancer. While chewing tobacco causes oral and pancreatic cancer,smoking causes cancer of the lungs, bladder, cervix and kidneys.
  • Make a conscious effort to reduce your sugar intake. Experts believe that sugar is a major cancer fuel Cancer cellsderive their power from sugar hence the risk of this deadly disease can be minimized drastically by cutting down your sugar intake.
  • Always safeguard yourself before stepping out in the sun. Exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet rays can damage your skin and eyes. Always wear a sunscreen and sunglasses to protect yourself.
  • Research suggests that approximately 30 minutes of physical activity on a daily basis can decrease your cancer risk.
  • Water is the true elixir. Always keep yourself hydrated as it helps to flush out toxins through urine.
  • Try to limit your use of Mobile phones as excessive radiations damage the nerves in your brain.

Meet our team of doctors at Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital for any cancer related queries. Our Centre for Cancer is equipped to handle all kinds of cases at various stages. The centre has sub-specialists proficient in dealing with different types of cancers. For further details please visit below link:

Happy Diwali!

Saturday, October 29th, 2016

Over the years as societies become more urbanised the needs of the masses changes, and so must the ways we celebrate our festivals. Diwali has become bigger, noisier and brighter with the ever increasing firecrackers. Over the years the health problems have also magnified. We must work towards a more eco-friendly celebration and wherein we are sensitive to our environment and society.

Bursting fireworks is a strange way to display our happiness. We must refrain from it and discourage our children too. Let us celebrate the festival of lights retaining it as a festival of joy without converting it into a public health problem.

Aftermath of Fireworks:

Air Pollution

Fireworks may seem exciting however they come with a host of illness triggers. During Diwali partially combusted low volatile organic compounds remain suspended in the atmosphere for several days. This is deadly for not just asthmatics, but causes breathing difficulties in anyone. Several crackers have multiple toxic chemicals like sulphur nitrates, magnesium, nitrogen dioxide increase, which are injurious to our respiratory passages.

Noise Pollution

‘Bombs’ are a favourite amongst many however they lead to immense noise pollution. A prolonged exposure to such high levels of noise can lead to permanent damage of the eardrums. Doctors get many cases wherein people who suffer holes in the eardrums not due to a direct injury, but the intense sound pressure of crackers.

Pet Care

Pets get very frightened with the loud noise of fireworks. It is advisable to keep your pets indoors and close all the curtains to make things calmer.

Child Exploitation

As most of you must be aware numerous children are employed by the firecracker industry. They work long hours and are exposed to harmful chemicals and acids. Their skin comes in constant contact with the acids and they also breathe harmful fumes.

Medical Injuries

Unfortunately injuries from fireworks spoil the fun for many families. Each year Diwali brings a fresh number of cases involving loss of eyesight and serious burns and injuries caused by fireworks. The most common reason is wrong handling of fireworks.

If you are one of those who will still continue to burst crackers this Diwali,then here are some precautions to follow:

  • Keep a first aid box and a bucket of water or sand nearby to handle emergencies.
  • While igniting Diwali aerial fireworks like rockets, ensure that they are not facing any opening like a window, door or an open building gate.
  • Don’t burn crackers in crowded, congested places and narrow lanes.
  • We must not let children burst crackers unaccompanied by an adult. Keep an eye on them constantly.
  • Don’t try to examine un-burst crackers.. leave it!
  • Avoid long loose clothes while bursting crackers, as they are fast in catching fire.
  • Strictly avoid using matches and lighters for bursting crackers for Diwali as they have open flames that can be dangerous.
  • Don’t keep your face close to the cracker while trying to light it
  • In case of burns, pour large quantity of water on the burnt area.
  • The patient should be taken to a burns specialist or a major hospital.
  • In case of eye burns, wash the eye with tap water for 10 minutes and take the victim to a hospital.
Other safety precautions:
  • The earthen lamps that we light on Diwali night are generally placed on balcony and window panes. Always ensure that these are not near any flammable material like wood, cloth or paper.
  • Make sure the decorative lights should never be tied to any metal poles as any current leak can energize the pole and give a shock to anyone who touches the pole.
Diwali and Food

It is difficult to stay away from sweet temptations in the festive season. Let us try to adapt some small changes in our diet this Diwali .Use natural sweeteners like dates, jaggery, honey or figs in sweets instead of sugar or artificial sweeteners. The best time to eat sweets is either on an empty stomach or when the body is low on calories.

Stay away from packaged savouries as they contain trans-fats which can be very dangerous for our cholesterol levels. Make your savouries at home, you can also bake them instead of frying them to cut down on fat.

Wishing you all a very Happy and Safe Diwali! Stay healthy and Eat healthy this festive season. This Diwali in case of any medical emergencies please contact our team of doctors at Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital. Our Full Time Specialist System ensures availability and access to the best medical talent 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Certain incidents of eye injuries and burns occur during Diwali for which people need immediate medical relief. Please visit our website for more details:

World Osteoporosis Day

Thursday, October 20th, 2016

Osteoporosis, literally means ‘porous bone’, is a disease in which the bone mass and bone strength are reduced. As we get older, we are unable to replace the bone tissue as quickly as we lose it. Osteoporosis occurs when new bone formation does not match the bone loss. Osteoporosis is a common disease that makes the bones thinner and thus more likely to break.

Symptoms and signs

Osteoporosis can be present without any symptoms for decades as it doesn’t show any symptoms until a bone breaks (fractures). Surprisingly, some osteoporotic fractures may escape detection for years if they do not cause symptoms. Therefore, patients may not be aware of their osteoporosis until they suffer a painful fracture.

What Causes Osteoporosis?

Some risk factors which make you more susceptible to osteoporosis:

  • Gender: Women get osteoporosis more often than men.
  • Age: The older you are, the greater your risk of osteoporosis.
  • Body size:. Small, thin women are at greater risk.
  • Family history: If osteoporosis runs in the family you are more likely to get it.
  • Sex hormones: Low estrogen levels due to missing menstrual periods or to menopause can cause osteoporosis in women. Low testosterone levels can bring on osteoporosis in men.
  • Anorexia nervosa: This eating disorder can lead to osteoporosis.
  • Calcium and vitamin D intake: A diet low in calcium and vitamin D makes you more prone to bone loss.
  • Medication use: Some medicines increase the risk of osteoporosis.
  • Activity level: Lack of exercise or long-term bed rest can cause weak bones.
  • Smoking: Cigarettes are bad for bones, and the heart, and lungs, too.
  • Drinking alcohol: Too much alcohol can cause bone loss and broken bones.

How Do I Know if I Have Osteoporosis?

If your are suffering any back ache, neck pain or muscle pain you must consult a doctor to see if a bone density test is needed. These scans use very small amounts of radiation to see how strong your bones are.

Treatments for Osteoporosis

Many osteoporosis treatments stop bone loss and lower your chances of fractures. Small changes in your diet and lifestyle along with medications help slow down bone loss or build new bone.

Tips to prevent Osteoporosis

Some healthy habits can help prevent osteoporosis and fractures:

  • Healthy Lifestyle: Smoking is bad for bones as well as for the heart and lungs. Avoid excessive consumption of alcohol as it makes you more prone to bone loss.
  • Exercise: It makes your bones and muscles stronger. Weight-bearing exercises, such as walking jogging, playing tennis, and dancing, are best for preventing osteoporosis when done regularly.
  • Add calciumto your diet: Experts recommend 1,000 milligrams each day for women before menopause and 1,200 milligrams a day for those who’ve been through it. Milk and dairy products, fish,dark green, leafy vegetables, such as kale and broccoli are good sources of calcium.
  • Supplement your diet: ;Its best to get calcium through the food you eat. But if you don’t get enough, ask your doctor if you need any calcium supplements.
  • Vitamin D: Your body needs it to absorb calcium. You can get some of what you need by spending time in the sun, which prompts your body to make vitamin D.

Some facts of Osteoporosis

  • Osteoporosis is a condition of fragile bone with an increased susceptibility to fracture.
  • The diagnosis of osteoporosis can be suggested by X-rays and confirmed by tests to measure bone density.
  • Osteoporosis is common in India, and high prevalence of vitamin D deficiency among Indians is one of the major reasons for this condition.
  • It is important to encourage children to drink milk and play in the sun so as to ensure adequate calcium intake and vitamin D synthesis.
  • Peak bone density is reached at approximately 25 years of age. Therefore, it is important to build strong bones by this age so that the bones will remain strong later in life

Our specialised Osteoporosis Clinic at Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital aims to prevent and treat osteoporosis through education, nutrition, physical therapy and medication. The primary goal is to prevent fractures by stopping or slowing the bone loss, maintaining bone strength and eliminating factors that contribute to falls. The clinic is managed by our team of specialists. We use our advanced technology and the latest DEXA machine to treat our osteoporosis patients.