Archive for September, 2022

Alzheimer’s disease and Caregiving

Tuesday, September 20th, 2022

Alzheimer’s disease is a brain disorder that slowly destroys memory and thinking skills as well as the ability to carry out the simplest tasks. Symptoms of this condition typically begin to show in the majority of patients in their mid-60s. Early-onset Alzheimer’s occurs between a person’s 30s and mid-60s and is very rare. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia among older adults.

A research from the Alzheimer’s and Related Disorders Society of India (ARDSI) from 2020 estimates that over 50 lakh Indians over 60 have dementia. India’s burden would be much higher due to unawareness about the condition, under reporting and lack of diagnosis. Early diagnosis and treatment allows patients suffering from Alzheimer’s disease to maintain the highest levels of cognitive and functional ability possible.

Signs of Alzheimer’s disease

As Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive illness, the signs and symptoms appear gradually over a long period of time and then worsen. Multiple brain functions are impacted due to this condition. In most cases, mild memory issues are the initial indication of Alzheimer’s disease which get severe as the illness worsens. The additional symptoms include:

  • Confusion, disorientation and getting lost in familiar places
  • Difficulty making decisions
  • Problems with speech and language
  • Personality changes, such as becoming aggressive, demanding or suspicious
  • Problems moving around without assistance
  • Hallucinations and delusions
  • Low mood or anxiety

Caring for someone with Alzheimer’s disease

People with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias are usually cared for by family members, friends or trained medical assistants. Here are some expert recommended tips to assist caregivers:

  • Help make communication easier
    How you talk to the patient can make a great difference to his/ her response towards your care and your overall rapport. Good communication skills can give the patient a chance to participate in conversations and activities easily. Here are some strategies to make communication easier:
    • Maintain eye contact and smile
    • Address the patient by name
    • Use a relaxed body language
    • Speak with a soft, calming voice
  • Help them eat a nutritious diet
    Eat a variety of foods, especially fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, and low-fat dairy. Limit intake of salt, sugar, processed and junk foods.
  • Boost their self-esteem
    Looking and feeling good can help alleviate some of the anxiety Alzheimer’s causes in patients. Make sure your patient has all the assistance they need to look their best.
  • Ensure the patient’s safety
    Is your house safe for your patient? Many everyday situations can make a person with Alzheimer’s feel unsafe or put them in actual danger. Follow these safety tips:
    • Place carpet or grip strips on stairs
    • Place covers over electrical outlets
    • Remove small rugs
    • Remove loose wires
    • Place handrails and mats in the shower
  • Plan right
    Schedule social gatherings and visitors for when your loved one is most capable of handling them. Too much stimulation or activity at the wrong time of day can be overwhelming for the patient.
  • Set a daily routine
    A daily routine and Alzheimer’s care go hand in hand, benefiting patients and caregivers alike. Whether it is going for a midday walk, solving puzzles, talking to loved ones or pursuing a hobby  provide patients with a sense of comfort and control over their lives and help them stay mentally and physically active.
  • Be patient
    Over time, a person with dementia will become more dependent. It is essential for the caregiver to be very patient and flexible and adapt your patient’s routine and expectations as needed.

Alzheimer’s care at Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital

Concerned about a loved one who has recently been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease? Consult highly trained and experienced neurologists and therapists at our Centre for Neurosciences. We undertake diagnostic tests, evaluation, neurology consultation, physical and cognitive rehabilitation, and psychotherapy to help manage this condition better. We are committed to provide world-class Alzheimer’s care and help make a positive difference in the patient’s life. Please visit our website for more details: https://www.kokilabenhospital.com/departments/centresofexcellence/centrefor_neurosciences.html

Lymphoma Awareness

Wednesday, September 14th, 2022

Lymphoma is a cancer of the lymphatic system. This condition develops in lymphocytes, a type of white blood cell. These cells are crucial to the body’s immunological defences and aid in the battle against disease. The most frequent blood cancer found in adults is lymphoma, and it is also the third most frequent disease found in children. While the exact cause of lymphoma still remains unknown, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma occurs much more frequently in HIV-infected people than in the general population. Lymphoma cannot be prevented, but survival rates after timely treatment are promising.

Types of Lymphoma

The 2 primary types of lymphoma that are commonly seen include Hodgkin lymphoma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL). They usually occur in both children and adults.

  • Hodgkin lymphoma
    Most people who suffer from Hodgkin lymphoma have the classic form. This form has large, abnormal lymphocytes (white blood cells) in their lymph nodes. This is usually a curable form of lymphoma.
  • Non-Hodgkin lymphoma
    There are many kinds of Non- Hodgkin lymphoma that form from different kinds of white blood cells, such as B cells and T cells. NHL may be slow-growing or aggressive. In this type, the white blood cells called lymphocytes grow abnormally and can form growths (tumors) throughout the body.

Symptoms of Lymphoma

Lymphoma has symptoms that are similar to other viral illnesses, like the common cold. They often go on for a longer duration, though. A painless enlargement of a lymph node in the neck or upper chest is the most typical early indication of lymphoma. You may occasionally feel swollen lymph nodes in your groin, stomach, or armpit. The swelling does not go away when it is lymphoma. The overlap of symptoms can often lead to misdiagnosis of this condition. Watch out for these symptoms of lymphoma and seek urgent medical care:

  • Ongoing fever without infection
  • Night sweats, fever, and chills
  • Weight loss and reduced appetite
  • Unusual itching
  • Persistent fatigue

4.3% of all new cancer cases are lymphomas. Through the lymphatic system, lymphoma can quickly spread from the lymph nodes to other regions of the body. The immune system is less effective in fighting infections as malignant lymphocytes invade other tissues.

How is Lymphoma diagnosed?               

There are no routine screenings for lymphoma. A person should see a doctor if they continue to experience viral symptoms. Additionally, they will perform a physical examination, looking for any potential swellings in the armpits, groin, neck, and abdomen. The doctor will search for indications of infection close to lymph nodes because this is the most common cause of swelling.

Usually, if a doctor suspects lymphoma, a biopsy will be performed. In order to do this, cells from an enlarged lymph node must be removed. To ascertain whether lymphoma cells are present and whether cell type they are, a specialist known as a hematopathologist will study the cells. Using imaging scans like a CT or MRI, it is possible to find new tumours or enlarged lymph nodes. Blood and bone marrow testing, imaging, and a physical examination that may involve a lymph node biopsy are all necessary for the diagnosis of lymphoma.

Lymphoma Treatment at Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital

The treatment advised for each case depends on various factors such as the exact type and stage of the lymphoma, its grade, your age and your general health. The treatment is also determined on the size of the affected nodes and which parts of the body are affected. The treatment is aimed at destroying as many lymphoma cells as possible and to induce a complete remission; that is, to eliminate all evidence of disease.

There are several treatment options, including radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and stem cell transplant. Chemotherapy and blood and marrow transplant are the main modalities used to treat lymphoma. Consult highly trained and experienced oncologists at our Centre for Cancer for a detailed diagnosis and for expert intervention. To know more about our Lymphoma care, visit our website: https://www.kokilabenhospital.com/departments/centresofexcellence/centrefor_cancer/lymphoma.html

Healthy Nutrition tips

Saturday, September 3rd, 2022

What did you eat for lunch today? And what did you have for breakfast? Are your meals a balance of essential food groups, are your meals planned well or are they quick fixes that contain fewer nutrients and comprise mainly of packaged foods. Do your busy schedules leave you little time to eat healthy? Do you often rely on junk food and takeaways for your daily meals? It is time to change this. Eating right is even more important than exercise, and the combination of a balanced diet along with the right amount of exercise can do wonders to your body.  Self-realization is important to make conscious food choices. This National Nutrition Week let us come together and spread awareness about the importance of healthy eating habits and good nutrition to maintain a healthy lifestyle and reduce your risk of lifestyle diseases.

Are you eating right?

A balanced diet provides your body the appropriate number of nutrients. 50–60% of the total calories should ideally come from carbohydrates, followed by 10%–15% from protein, and 20–30% from fat. Vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fibre should also be a part of your diet. Depending on the person’s gender, age, and specific needs, the body has different nutritional needs. Pregnant women and highly active individuals, and young children frequently have increased nutrient needs.

Healthy nutrition tips

A healthy diet is important to support and strengthen your immune system. Nutrients such as proteins, vitamins, carbohydrates, fibres, fats, minerals, and water must be an essential part of your diet to maintain a healthy immune system and strengthen your body. Consistent healthy eating habits can reduce the likelihood of developing health problems such as obesity, heart disease, diabetes and certain types of cancer. Follow these healthy eating tips:

  • Eat local produce
    Increase your intake of locally available and seasonal fruits, vegetables, and whole grains near your region and reduce your intake of processed foods. Eat a rainbow, the more colourful the diet the more antioxidants it includes.
  • Explore traditional foods
    You don’t have to find fancy ingredients to eat healthy. Instead choose simple but nutritious Indian millets that include jowar, bajra, ragi, etc as a part of your daily diet.
  • Eat a variety of food
    You must include a mix of wholegrains like wheat, maize and rice, legumes like lentils and beans, and plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables in your diet. Choose unprocessed foods as much as possible.
  • Limit your salt intake
    Limit your salt intake to 5 grams or a teaspoon a day. Further, when cooking and preparing foods, use salt sparingly and reduce the use of packaged salty sauces and condiments as they are usually high in sodium.
  • Eat moderate healthy fats in moderation
    Replace butter with healthier fats like olive, soy, sunflower or corn oil when cooking. Avoid processed, baked and fried foods that contain trans-fat. Choose steaming, roasting or baking instead of frying food when cooking.
  • Limit sugar intake
    Limit intake of sweets and sugary drinks such as fizzy drinks, fruit juices, energy and sports drinks, flavoured milk drinks. Use jaggery, honey, dates, and raisins to sweeten you desserts instead of refined sugar.
  • Stay hydrated
    Drinking enough water can help improve many of your bodily processes and is essential for optimal health. Drink water whenever thirsty and avoid sipping on juices, fizzy drinks or alcoholic drinks.

Nutrition services at Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital

Get expert personalised advice from our team of doctors at the Department of Nutrition Therapy at Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital for further assistance and care. Please find below the link: https://www.kokilabenhospital.com/departments/clinicaldepartments/nutritiontherapy.html