Physical medicine and rehabilitation (also referred as Physiatry) is related to evaluation, treatment, and medical management and rehabilitation of individuals of all ages and both sexes with neuro-musculoskeletal disorders and associated conditions. The aim of physiatry is to increase and restore lost functional ability and quality of life of those who have been disabled as a result of disease, disorder, or injury.
It helps every individual maximize functional performance and achieve independence and community integration. Various health care specialists work in physical medicine and rehabilitation. A physician who is expert in physical medicine and rehabilitation can be called as a physiatrist. The Physiatrist work with multidisciplinary team including physical therapists, speech language pathologists, neuropsychologists, occupational therapists, dieticians, social workers, and rehabilitation nurses. Rehabilitation engineers, prosthetists, therapeutic recreation therapists, case coordinators, and orthotics are also important team members. The team works together to:
- Increase function
- Decrease pain and disability
- Maximize performance at work, school, office, during recreation and in all other areas of life.
Disorders treated by physical and rehabilitation physicians
- Cerebral palsy
- Multiple sclerosis
- Neck and back pain or injury
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Failed back surgeries/syndrome
- Head injuries
- Pinched nerves
- Diabetic/peripheral neuropathy
- Myofascial pain
- Stroke rehabilitation
- Shoulder pain
- Work-related injuries
- Spine pain
- Sports-related injuries
- Reflex sympathetic dystrophy
- Neurological disability such as stroke, spinal cord injury
- Other musculoskeletal disorders
Physiatrist treats disabilities and injuries by nonsurgical means such as:
- Therapeutic exercise
- Spinal stimulation
- Injection procedures
- Pharmaceutical pain control
Using a multidisciplinary approach, physiatry covers everything from cardiac rehabilitation to pain management. Physiatrists treat the whole patient, not just the symptoms. They help patients understand their condition by sharing their medical knowledge. A variety of treatment methods can be used to eliminate your symptoms. These health care specialists improve the life of millions of people every year.
Psychiatrists evaluate patients within hours of a major disease or injury; they have the satisfaction of coordinating not only their patient’s rehabilitative care but also over time, their community reintegration and back to work. After evaluating a patient’s medical history and obtaining physical examination findings, physiatrists are able to determine the extent of physical and cognitive deficits and also assess the functional implications of a patient’s impairment. Laboratory studies, radiographic imaging, and electrodiagnostic evaluations can be considered to assess the extent of the patient’s impairment.
Specialists in the field of physical medicine and rehabilitation are well trained in the assessment and prescription of prosthetic limbs or braces, as well as in the prescription of physical agents such as ice application, massage, superficial and deep heat, etc. Moreover, they are well trained to manage medical complications resulting from abnormalities such as autonomic hyperreflexia, spasticity, and neurogenic bladder. These experts in physical medicine and rehabilitation perform intravenous injections and peripheral nerve blockade in addition to nerve conduction studies and electromyography.
Alzheimer’s disease is a type of dementia that causes several body problems including memory problems, thinking problems and behavioural problems. It is one of the most common causes of dementia. Alzheimer’s disease is named after a doctor who first described the disease and called it. The Doctor’s name was Alois Alzheimer.
The condition is different from normal forgetfulness in which a person forgets about a particular place or person’s name, but if the individual forgets his name and forgets the places well known to him, then this is different from normal forgetfulness.
Symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease
The typical symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease may vary from mild to worse. It is critical to know that the patients with Alzheimer’s disease may show different Alzheimer’s symptoms. The major difficulty that arises with this illness is the memory loss. The memory loss interferes with the daily life.
The early and later symptoms may vary in the severity. The first signs are:
- Difficulty in remembering ordinary things
- Losing things like keys and glasses in the house
- Quickly being lost in well-known places
- Confusion of time and location of being
- Pressure to perform straightforward mathematical calculations
The signs of later stages of Alzheimer’s:
- Inability to remember the way to brush the teeth or comb hairs
- Inability to remember their house location
- Difficult to remember the names of simple things
- Confusion about time and place
- Changes in mood and behaviour
- Poor judgmental qualities etc.
Changes in brain during Alzheimer’s disease:
According to various scientists, there are about 100 million nerve cells in our brain, and they work together to make the brain functioning perfect. The brain nerve cells work to send the signals from the brain to different parts of the body. Alzheimer’s disease is known to interfere with the functioning of the brain nerve cells or the nervous system.
During the ageing process and Alzheimer’s disease, two abnormal structures called plaques and tangles are formed that damage the nerve cells.
- Plaques are formed up of beta-amyloidal protein
- Tangles are made up of another protein called tau protein
The destruction and death of the nerve cells with the build up of these proteins causes the Alzheimer’s disease and other symptoms dementia.
Who is at the risk of getting Alzheimer’s disease?
There are a few common risk factors that can initiate the beginning of Alzheimer’s illness and they are:
- Age problem: it is one of the biggest risk factors. In the people above the age of 65 years are at a danger of getting AD, and the risk keep on increasing every five years. More than 17% of people above the age of 80 years.
- Gender: it is not clearly known the reason behind the cause of the disease in women, still at least twice number of women suffers AD in comparison to men who reaches the age of 65. Women live longer than men, and this fact confuses with the maximum cases of women who suffer from AD. Research is being done on whether oestrogen hormone lack post menopause is the primary reason for the cause of AD in ageing women.
- Family history or heredity: Yet another risk factor. People who have close ones or relatives with AD are more likely to get the disease.
- Genetic makeup: two genes are related to developing Alzheimer’s disease.
The risk genes, APOE-e gene, APOE-e4 or APOE-e 2or APOE-e3, are known to cause a risk to develop the Alzheimer’s disease, in case, two copies of this gene are inherited.
The deterministic genes are very rare and found only in the few extended families of the world.
Some other risk factors are:
There are a few other causes of memory problem that arises with Alzheimer’s disease:
- Medicinal side effect
- Consuming too much alcohol
- Blood clot or tumor
- Unwholesome Diet
- Head injury
- Liver problem
- Kidney problem etc.
No such test can examine the presence of Alzheimer’s disease. The patient’s condition is usually diagnosed with the help of a few common tests including the analysis of the symptoms, some neurological tests and a few physical tests such as:
- Blood pressure check
- Weight check
- Urine test
- Blood test
- Pulse rate check etc.
Treatments for Alzheimer’s disease:
There is no cure for Alzheimer’s disease up to this date. The scientist is still working on finding the ways to prevent the damage of nerve cells in the brain. A few drugs are available to control the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease, and they are FDA approved also. The Alzheimer’s medication list is as follows:
These Alzheimer drugs are available online also, in case you find difficulty in finding the drugs in your locality. Although Alzheimer’s is an incurable problem, still there are a lot of things that can be done to improve the condition of the patient. The Alzheimer reviews show that drugs, support and more physical and mental activeness of the patient can improve the status of the patient to several folds.
About the Disease
Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a condition which damages brain cells resulting in memory loss, thinking and language skills, and behavioral changes. It was first described by Alios Alzheimer a German pathologist. It is a sixth leading cause of death in America. Unfortunately there is no way to stop its growth and it keeps on rising with time.
SIGNS & SYMPTOMS
Memory loss is the first sign of disease condition. With advancement in disease there is increase in memory loss and along with that a person will experience mood swings, increased sleeping, seizures, anger, anxiety and overall personality changes.
Exact reason is still unclear but abnormal amount of protein present in brain reduces the activity of nerve cells makes them weak and eventually leads to its destruction. Aged persons are more susceptible to this condition along with that genetic tendency; lifestyle and environmental factors such as heart disorders, stroke, diabetes and obesity are one of the causes of Alzheimer’s disease.
In early stages, it can be diagnosed by simple memory test, personality and behavior changes are observed. For advanced stages Computed topography (CT) or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) are generally done which clearly shows the degenerated status of brain.
There is no effective way to prevent the disease but one can reduce the risk by lowering heart related diseases, regular exercise, eating right and staying mentally and socially active. High intake of supplements pep up the Brain cells and its activity such as
- Omega fatty acids (Fishes like Tuna, mackerel and Solomon)
- Eat more vegetables and fruits like Berries
- Folic acid improves learning and thinking ability
- Purple grape protects brain cells
This disease is incurable. The basic approach of the treatment is to prevent or delay the signs and symptoms. There are four USFDA approved drugs which improves the thinking, memory and speaking skills.
Along with these drugs, proper care is a key factor which can make living little easier. A caregiver should try to maintain a healthy lifestyle of a patient by keeping positive environment all around, a proper nutritious diet and making him socially and physically active.
MYTHS AND FACTS
MYTH : Alzheimer’s disease cannot be prevented
FACT: Exact cause of AD is still unknown it could be due to genetic bent or hypertension. There are certain ways which prevents the brain function impairment such as change in lifestyle, proper diet, mental and physical exercise, positive thinking, and stress free life.
MYTH:An x-ray of the brain can diagnose Alzheimer’s disease.
FACT: An x ray cannot diagnose the brain changes. General mental tests, physical examination and techniques like MRI and CT scan can rule out the condition.
Alzheimer’s disease is a brain disease that affects the memory and reasoning ability of a person. The patients suffering from Alzheimer’s often show symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease and it is important that we recognize these symptoms. The 10 Early signs of Alzheimer’s are the following. Continue Reading…