Foot and ankle health IQ

Feet are vulnerable to a number of common problems. The toes may suffer from a Morton’s neuroma, a bunion, or hammertoe. Two problems dog the toenails: ingrown toenails and toenail fungus. The biggest cause of heel pain is a condition called plantar fasciitis. Pain that strikes behind the ankle may be caused by a tight Achilles’ tendon, resulting in tendinitis. A fallen arch is also painful. This occurs when the main tendon in the foot loses its elasticity. Metatarsal bones in the middle of the feet are prone to fractures in people with osteoporosis. (Locked) More »

Is that mood change a sign of something more serious?

Mood-related symptoms can come and go in response to everyday stresses. If they occur for long periods, cause significant distress, or interfere with daily functioning, it’s an indication to seek help. Mood changes may be the result of a psychiatric disorder, a sleep disorder, a medication’s side effect, or changes in brain structures or chemical neurotransmitter systems. A significant mood change that lasts for more than a few weeks should be evaluated by a health care professional.   More »

Do you know the symptoms of a stroke?

Stroke symptoms come on suddenly, are a new experience, and have no explained cause. They can include dizziness, loss of balance, and trouble walking; vision problems, difficulty speaking or understanding others. (Locked) More »

Can you avoid carpal tunnel syndrome?

Sometimes the tissue around the tendons can swell and press against the median nerve in the forearm, in an area called the carpal tunnel. It results in tingling and numbness in the thumb and the middle, index, and ring fingers. The condition, called carpal tunnel syndrome, is often linked to aging. Carpal tunnel syndrome can be treated with surgery and also nonsurgical treatments, such as splinting, steroid injections, stretching and exercising the wrist and hand, and possibly vitamin B6 and acupuncture. More »

Can drinking wine really promote longevity?

Research on resveratrol may someday lead to improved health and extended life. However, it appears that there is no link between dietary resveratrol levels and the rates of heart disease, cancer, and death in humans. Taking resveratrol supplements comes with some risks. The safe, effective dose for humans is unknown. It is also unknown how long-term use will affect people for better or for worse. People taking a resveratrol supplement, or those who plan to, should let their doctor know.  (Locked) More »

A word about dietary supplements

The FDA does not approve dietary supplements the way it approves medications. The FDA monitors whether drug manufacturing processes are adequate. However, with dietary supplements, the FDA does not have to certify that they are safe or effective.   (Locked) More »

Do older adults need colorectal cancer screenings?

Whether older adults should get routine colorectal cancer (CRC) screenings is debated. Some guidelines suggest that people should not get screenings past age 75 or 80. Some evidence shows the screenings are effective well into the 80s in previously unscreened patients with no other chronic conditions. For people older than 75, it’s best to weigh the risks and benefits of screening. A family history of CRC or precancerous polyps increase the risk for CRC and may be cause for a screening.  (Locked) More »

Be proactive about sun protection

It appears that physicians rarely counsel people about sunscreen use—even people with a history of skin cancer. However, people should wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen before heading outdoors, even in fall or winter. (Locked) More »

Another benefit of brisk walking

Brisk walking may improve the symptoms of Parkinson's disease. Some evidence shows that it may improve motor function, mood, tiredness, fitness, and some aspects of thinking abilities. (Locked) More »