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Diseases & Conditions Archive

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Poor sleep heightens risk of COPD flare ups

Published October 1, 2022

A 2022 study found that people with COPD who reported poor sleep had significantly higher risks of experiencing flare-ups of worsened breathing. Poor sleep may more accurately predict COPD flare-ups than a person’s smoking history, researchers said.

Could I have lactose intolerance?

Published October 1, 2022

Lactose intolerance can develop at any age, prompting gas, bloating, nausea, or diarrhea after people eat or drink dairy products. Secondary lactose intolerance can happen after the small intestine is jolted by surgery, illness, or injury.

More fallout from COVID-19

Published October 1, 2022

Hair loss is common in the months after recovering from COVID-19 infection. It can also happen in people with long COVID or because of mental stress from the pandemic. COVID-related hair loss is a form of telogen effluvium, a condition in which normal hair shedding ramps up after intense physical or mental trauma. Hair regrowth usually takes six to 12 months. People can speed and support hair regrowth by avoiding harsh hair habits, checking nutrient levels, and applying minoxidil (Rogaine) to the scalp.

Enhanced flu vaccine suggested for older adults

Published October 1, 2022

Influenza vaccines that contain higher doses and extra ingredients (adjuvants) to boost their effectiveness can provide better protection than the standard flu vaccine for adults ages 65 and older, according to the CDC, and are recommended for the upcoming flu season.

The rundown on diarrhea

Published October 1, 2022

Everyone experiences acute (short-term) diarrhea at some time. The unpleasant experience often resolves on its own in a few days, but there are situations that require medical attention. Examples include bloody diarrhea, severe abdominal pain, a high fever, and episodes that continue for a week or longer. A medical consultation can help determine if diarrhea is related to a specific bacterium or parasite, a medication side effect, a food intolerance, or an inflammatory bowel disease.

Why do I feel so cold all the time?

Published October 1, 2022

Several conditions can cause people to feel cold when others are warm. These include low body weight, skipping meals, feeling fatigued, and having a thyroid condition or a low red blood cell count (anemia).

Research upholds use of supplements to slow macular degeneration

Published October 1, 2022

Ten years of data suggest that AREDS2 supplements are associated with a reduced risk of macular degeneration progression without any increase in lung cancer risk, according to a follow-up study published online June 2, 2022, by JAMA Ophthalmology.

New thinking on glaucoma treatment

Published October 1, 2022

Some people with newly diagnosed mild to moderate open-angle glaucoma have another option for first-line treatment. Instead of using prescription eye drops initially, they can have a laser procedure called selective laser trabeculoplasty (SLT). SLT uses light pulses to help clean up debris clogging the eye’s natural drains. Clogged drains lead to elevated eye pressure that damages the optic nerve. SLT's effects wane after three to five years, at which point it may be necessary to have the procedure again, or to begin using eye drops to treat glaucoma.

3 common mouth problems and how to cope with them

Published October 1, 2022

Mouth conditions unrelated to the teeth can cause discomfort and affect mouth function. Examples include canker sores, dry mouth, and thrush. Canker sores are painful ulcers that develop in the lining of the mouth or gums. Chronic dry mouth is a lack of saliva. Thrush is an overgrowth of the fungus Candida albicans that appears in the mouth as white patches or sores. Treatment for these conditions may involve simple therapies to try at home or prescription treatments.

Who needs treatment for ocular hypertension?

Updated September 22, 2022

High pressure in the eyes puts a person at greater risk of developing glaucoma, but does everyone with higher than normal eye pressure need to be treated? A major long-term study provides some clues.

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