It is particularly dispiriting that despite mounting evidence as to the deleterious effects of maternal tobacco smoking both pre- and post-natal on the child, mothers continue to smoke. A 2011 publication analyzing data from 1965 to 2008, estimated that anywhere from 22 to 34 percent of American women of reproductive age smoke cigarettes. It is thus a major public health concern due to predictable adverse outcomes and neurodevelopmental deficits in offspring.Read More
Almost every health professional has been told by a patient that standard asthma treatment produces undesirable side effects, and that a better replacement exists in one or more forms of alternative medicine. Yoga is regarded as a form of mind-body practice and is the sixth most commonly form of complementary…Read More
Part I described the properties of Vitamins A, C, D and E and the research based conclusions as to in their use in the treatment of asthma. This installment reviews the other dietary nutrients.Read More
The average North American is exposed each day to food with many different nutrients, preservatives, toxins, colourings, flavouring agents, and numerous miscellaneous other additives. While many of these items are individually designated ‘GRAS’ (generally regarded as safe), no studies have…Read More
Over-the-counter medications are generally regarded as safe. And one of the most effective pain relievers most commonly recommended and used during pregnancy is acetaminophen. Acetaminophen or paracetamol (the generic name for Tylenol or Excedrin) has the fewest risks compared with aspirin or ibuprofen. However, this does not mean that…Read More
The goal of treatment in asthma is to attain control of the disease. This requires a team approach with the patient being an essential member of the team. Control of asthma is beneficial in that it improves the quality of life for the patient and reduces health care costs.
Controlling asthma is not easy for either patients or health care providers. From the patient’s perspective there are the environmental reduction and avoidance measures that are of primary importance. Then there are the medications, different…Read More
Herpes zoster is both painful and dreaded. Initial infection in childhood by the varicella-zoster virus (VZV) causes chicken pox. The virus may then lie dormant for years and reactivate in adults as herpes zoster (also called shingles), an ailment that can be extremely painful. The recurrence of this…Read More
Leukotrienes play a major role in asthma, which is a chronic inflammatory disease. Inflammatory mediators instigate the contraction of airway smooth muscle and cause inflammation and damage to the lining of the airways. Inflammation is also present in migraine where there is both dilation and constriction of blood vessels. Inflammation then may be the common link between…Read More
Is there a link between asthma and autism? A recent study supports this idea. More precisely the link appears to be between the prenatal use of beta-agonists and autism. The beta-agonists include both the short- and long-acting forms.
The use of medication to control asthma during pregnancy is essential. Pregnant women are…Read More
In Chinese philosophy, yin represents the negative and yang represents the positive, and their interaction influences the destiny of individuals. So it is with steroids, the most widely used drugs in the world for the treatment of immune and inflammatory diseases. Unfortunately, steroids are non-specific in their action and…Read More
Anaphylaxis, from the Greek, means ‘without protection’. The World Health Organization defines anaphylaxis as a “serious, life-threatening, generalized or systemic, allergic or hypersensitivity reaction with sudden onset (minutes to a few hours)”. Anaphylaxis has been seen from infants as young as 2 weeks of age to the elderly. Neugut et al investigated the epidemiology of anaphylaxis in the United States and…Read More
The beginning of school or a major holiday is often the time when parents discover that they not only have a child with allergies, but that the allergy is serious enough to cause death. This then is their first contact with anaphylaxis. Derived from the Greek and meaning ‘without protection’, anaphylaxis implies that the body’s natural defence systems are lowered. This can be fatal. Anaphylaxis has been known to occur in infants as young as . . .Read More
The symptomatic response to SHS, and its severity, depends not only on the child but also on the duration of exposure. Prenatal exposure due to maternal smoking has a long-term effect on the child’s respiratory health. The evidence linking asthma with maternal smoking during pregnancy is clearly established, and postnatal exposure to parental smoking is associated with . . .Read More
The quality of sleep is affected even in patients with clinically stable asthma. A study of 74 children, 40 of whom had well-controlled and stable asthma, found that in comparison to their controls, the children with asthma had poorer sleep quality. There was a significant correlation between peak flow readings and…Read More
Sleep is defined medically as a physiologic state of relative unconsciousness and inaction of the voluntary muscles, the need for which occurs periodically. Another definition describes sleep as a "natural and periodic state of rest during which consciousness of the world is suspended." Sleep is no longer considered a passive state but…Read More
For more than a decade, attempts to reduce exposure to house dust mites (HDM) have been made through patient education and research. Sensitization to HDM and exposure has been linked to asthma symptoms; moreover, HDM are a known trigger of asthma. Hence . . .Read More
With the increase in cases of asthma and allergies, manufacturers have marketed air purifiers as an aid to improved health. They come in a variety of guises: industrial or commercial, installed or portable; ozone producers, ion . . .Read More
Ozone, a triatomic molecule, consists of three oxygen atoms. Two of these form the basic oxygen molecule necessary for life, while the third acts like a free agent, combining with other substances that react with organic material to form substances that can endanger health. Ozone is a toxic gas.
Outdoor ground-level ozone, a component of smog, is the result of interaction between . . .Read More
Updated clinical practice guidelines for adult sinusitis have just been published. Since sinusitis is almost always attended by inflammation of the nasal mucosa, the term rhinosinusitis is used through the document.
Rhinosinusitis is classified by duration: acute rhinosinusitis (ARS) lasts for less than four weeks, while chronic rhinosinusitis…Read More
Air quality is determined by measuring five major pollutants:
1. ground level ozone
2. particulate matter (PM)
3. carbon monoxide (CO)
4. sulfur dioxide (SO2)
5. nitrogen dioxide (NO2)
and the result, called . . .Read More