21 8 / 2014

allheartcare:

Your pericardium is a thin double-layered sac which encloses the heart, and the large blood vessels that enter and leave the heart. The pericardium keeps the heart contained and protected within the chest cavity. Fluid within the pericardium surrounds the heart and lubricates its surface. This makes it possible for the heart to move (beat) within this small space.

What it is:

Pericardial Effusion

When more than a little fluid accumulates around the heart it is called a pericardial effusion. If it happens over a long period of time the pericardium can stretch, but if it happens abruptly, such as after an injury, there is not enough room for more fluid and the heart at the same time. Under such circumstances the heart gets compressed, which prevents blood from returning into the heart. Less in, means less out and the result is poor heart function and a drop in blood pressure. If left untreated, pericardial effusion can cause heart failure or death. This condition is called Cardiac Tamponade. Tamponade is a life-threatening condition if left untreated.

Pericardial effusion symptoms may include:

  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing (dyspnea)
  • Shortness of breath when lying down (orthopnea)
  • Chest pain, usually behind the breastbone or on the left side of the chest
  • Cough
  • Painful breathing, especially when inhaling or lying down
  • Fainting or dizziness
  • Low-grade fever
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Overall sense of fatigue or weakness

You can have significant pericardial effusion and experience no signs or symptoms, particularly if the fluid has increased slowly. This is more common when the cause of pericardial effusion is cancer or a chronic inflammatory disorder, such as rheumatoid arthritis.

Pericarditis

Pericarditis is inflammation of the pericardium. The pericardium has an inner and outer layer with a small amount of lubricating fluid between them. When the pericardium becomes inflamed, the amount of fluid between the two layers increases. This squeezes the heart and restricts its action.

Causes of pericarditis

Pericarditis can result from one or more of these:

  • a viral, bacterial or fungal infection
  • heart attack
  • cancer spreading from a nearby tumor in the lung, breast or the blood
  • radiation treatment
  • injury or surgery

Sometimes it accompanies other diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and kidney failure.

Symptoms of pericarditis

Chest pain is common, especially pain behind the breastbone. Sometimes this pain spreads to the neck and left shoulder. Pain from pericarditis often is a sharp, piercing pain over the center or left side of the chest. The pain may get worse with a deep breath. Less often the pain is dull. A fever is also common. Patients with pericarditis feel sick as opposed to angina type pains.

Treatment of pericarditis

Analgesics or anti-inflammatory drugs are given to relieve pain. Antibiotics are also prescribed if the pericarditis is due to a bacterial infection. If excess fluid is seriously affecting the heart’s action, a needle may be used to draw it off. In some cases surgery may be required.

Acute inflammatory pericarditis usually lasts one to three weeks and doesn’t lead to further problems. About 20% of pericarditis patients have a recurrence within months or, rarely, within years.

Sometimes a chronic form of pericarditis can develop into intense scarring (“constrictive pericarditis”) that prevents the heart from pumping, a condition in which a diseased and stiffened pericardium is impairing normal cardiac function, not unlike from what happens with cardiac tamponade

Since blood has trouble returning to the heart (impaired filling), the heart function becomes progressively limited with symptoms of heart failure that include

  • Edema,
  • Shortness of breath
  • Pain

When that occurs, the only treatment is a “pericardiectomy”, the surgical removal of part or most of the pericardium from the surface of the heart, a difficult and sometimes dangerous operation. If the underlying heart function is adequate, significant improvements are possible.

- See more at:

http://www.cardiachealth.org/your-pericardium#sthash.dGDmZa1N.dpuf

(via nursingisinmyblood)

21 8 / 2014

nprglobalhealth:

Experimental Vaccine For Chikungunya Passes First Test
Scientists have taken the first steps to developing a vaccine for chikungunya — an emerging mosquito-borne virus that has infected more than a half million people in the Western Hemisphere this year. About 600 Americans have brought the virus to 43 states.
The study was small. Only 25 people were given the experimental vaccine. But the findings are promising. They demonstrate that the vaccine is safe and that it triggers a strong response from the immune system, scientists reported Friday in the Lancet journal.
Until last year, chikungunya was found only in parts of Africa and Asia. Then in December, the virus started circulating on the island of St. Martin in the Caribbean.
From there, chikungunya spread like wildfire. It hopped from island to island in the Caribbean and spilled over into Central America and parts of South America. By July, chikungunya had found its way to Florida. At least four people have caught the virus in Florida. And the state has recorded 138 imported cases. New York state has the second largest number of imported cases, 96.
Chikungunya usually isn’t fatal. But it causes a high fever, headache, nausea and extreme joint pain — which can linger for months. And there’s no cure or vaccine.
Continue reading.
Photo: Residents walk amid fumes as workers spray chemicals to exterminate mosquitoes in a neighborhood of Petion Ville in Port-au-Prince on May 21. The virus swept through Haiti this spring, infecting more than 40,000 people. (Hector Retamala/AFP/Getty Images)

nprglobalhealth:

Experimental Vaccine For Chikungunya Passes First Test

Scientists have taken the first steps to developing a vaccine for chikungunya — an emerging mosquito-borne virus that has infected more than a half million people in the Western Hemisphere this year. About 600 Americans have brought the virus to 43 states.

The study was small. Only 25 people were given the experimental vaccine. But the findings are promising. They demonstrate that the vaccine is safe and that it triggers a strong response from the immune system, scientists reported Friday in the Lancet journal.

Until last year, chikungunya was found only in parts of Africa and Asia. Then in December, the virus started circulating on the island of St. Martin in the Caribbean.

From there, chikungunya spread like wildfire. It hopped from island to island in the Caribbean and spilled over into Central America and parts of South America. By July, chikungunya had found its way to Florida. At least four people have caught the virus in Florida. And the state has recorded 138 imported cases. New York state has the second largest number of imported cases, 96.

Chikungunya usually isn’t fatal. But it causes a high fever, headache, nausea and extreme joint pain — which can linger for months. And there’s no cure or vaccine.

Continue reading.

Photo: Residents walk amid fumes as workers spray chemicals to exterminate mosquitoes in a neighborhood of Petion Ville in Port-au-Prince on May 21. The virus swept through Haiti this spring, infecting more than 40,000 people. (Hector Retamala/AFP/Getty Images)

(via nursingisinmyblood)

21 8 / 2014

thenotquitedoctor:

Dr. Kevin Ahern (premed advisor at Oregon State) has a series of videos on YouTube that are absolutely excellent for banishing pre-interview jitters. He has some wonderful advice about how to prepare for an interview, how to dress, body language, how to handle tough questions, etc.—you name the scenario and he has covered it. 

I watched his videos before my interviews and felt much more confident. I would say his videos are the next best thing to a personal coach (seriously who can afford that?) and mock interviews. It’s a 2-3 hour time investment, but I was glad I watched them. Hope they might be helpful for those of you who are still anxiously awaiting interviews or who are preparing to apply next cycle. 

Here’s part 2 of the video as well!

(via md-admissions)

21 8 / 2014

childishfigure:

sixpenceee:

JOINTS IN MOTION

As said by IFL science

Cameron Drake of San Francisco has created a collection of magnificent images showing joints in motion. He was aided by orthopedic physician Dr. Noah Weiss and the finished product is completely amazing. If you’d like to know more about the project, please check out Drake’s blog.

We are the joints in motion.

We give you our devotion.

Because without motion you’d be a paralyzed sack.

(via not-in-my-ambulance)

20 8 / 2014

beinggigantic:

this is the best post on this website

beinggigantic:

this is the best post on this website

(Source: choriflaiweb, via theschoolgirlsnotebook)

20 8 / 2014

medicalstate:

A yawn is a silent scream for coffee.

medicalstate:

A yawn is a silent scream for coffee.

(Source: bouncyteabag)

20 8 / 2014

the-misadventures-of-lele:

psychogemini:

deathtasteslikechicken:

abs-gabs:

SOMEONE FINALLY SAID IT

So if a teenager is at school for roughly 8 hours, and they are doing homework for 6+ hours, and they need AT LEAST 9 HOURS OF SLEEP FOR THEIR DEVELOPING BRAINS, then they may have 0-1 hours for other activities like eating, bathing, exercise, socializing (which is actually incredibly important for emotional, mental, and physical health, as well as the development of skills vital to their future career and having healthy romantic relationships among other things), religious activities, hobbies, extra curriculars, medical care of any kind, chores (also a skill/habit development thing and required by many parents), relaxation, and family time?  Not to mention that your parents may or may not pressure you to get a job, or you might need to get one for economic reasons.

I will never not reblog this

"…but teenagers have no reason to be stressed."

(via distraction)

20 8 / 2014

fastcompany:

image

Wow people on the first impression with tricks as simple as including your middle initial in your signature, or throwing on a pair of glasses.

For more ways to look like a smarty-pants without cracking a book, check out the video above.

(Source: Fast Company)

20 8 / 2014

ermedicine:

It’s been an exceptionally long time since I’ve shared one of my “vignettes” from the emergency department. Over the summer, I have had many exciting moments in the ED, but this is by far the most memorable.

One particularly busy night, we get a call from EMS that they’re bringing us a pt in his…

20 8 / 2014

okaywork:

when teachers actually start teaching on the first day of class

image

(Source: okaywork, via the-absolute-best-gifs)