Diseases and Conditions Encyclopedia
Tap into this interactive encyclopedia for instant access to information on more than 835 diseases and conditions.
A growing body of research has found that a regular program of moderate exercise—such as walking—may add years to your life.
Walking is easy because you can do it almost anywhere and at any time. It also offers a range of health benefits.
At least 90 days before starting to try to conceive, both men and women should take steps to improve their diet and exercise routines, as well as fine-tune any medications they may be taking.
Microwaves are superb for seafood and vegetables. You can cook shellfish in less than five minutes, using the bowl you'll put on the table. Vegetables keep their color, crispness and water-soluble nutrients because you can microwave them using just the water that remains after rinsing.
Older adults who want to improve their physical health are turning to warm-water exercise.
When your child acts as if she’s carrying the weight of the world on her shoulders, maybe you should check her backpack.
Every year, thousands of Americans are injured or killed in boating and swimming accidents.
As a working parent, do you need some relief from the stress of managing a career and a family?
A proven way to improve your health is finding -- or making -- the time to exercise. But just going through the motions won't give you the health benefits you want.
The most effective way to lower your dental bills is to take care of your teeth, and to make sure your children do the same.
Preventing teen turmoil starts at birth. Parents set examples in the way they interact, express anger, and treat substance abuse.
Excessive drinking can cause potentially fatal conditions, not only high blood pressure, but also damage to the brain, heart or liver; diabetes and stroke.
The reasons for back surgery typically vary with a patient's age.
Most medical weight-loss programs first try to help you make the long-term behavioral changes necessary to achieve and maintain a healthy weight. This includes exercising regularly and eating healthy food. If you still remain seriously overweight, you and your doctor might discuss these options.
The American Academy of Pediatrics and the American College of Sports Medicine now say that strength training is fine for kids, as long as they are supervised and don't try to lift too much weight.
Once children hit puberty, and hormones make it possible to build muscle, weight training can become a part of a healthy exercise program for youths. Research suggests strength training has a lot to offer some teenagers in terms of health, fitness and fun.
Misconceptions about weight training -- often based on unfounded fears of becoming too muscular -- can keep women from pushing their fitness levels.
Starting as early as your 20s and throughout your 30s, you'll naturally start to lose muscle -- and gain fat at a rate of about 2 percent per decade, especially if you have a sedentary job or lifestyle.
The basics of wellness -- eating a balanced diet, exercising regularly and practicing healthful habits -- can help you live a longer, healthier life. Adopting even one of the following components of good health and better self-care can improve your well-being. Embracing all of them will yield significant benefits.
As some schools ban colas from vending machines, ads are hyping a source of even more caffeine: energy drinks.
Although many researchers have believed that vitamin E might help reduce the risk for cancer and heart disease, recent studies suggest that large doses of vitamin E have no proven clinical benefits. They may even be harmful.
Many stones are as small as a grain of sand. Other stones may be pea- or marble-sized and more difficult to pass.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) tracks five major air pollutants that cause significant health effects: ground-level ozone, nitrogen oxides, sulfur oxides, carbon monoxide and microscopic particles called particulate matter.
Today's pharmacists counsel you on how to use your medicine correctly and help protect you against overdoses and dangerous drug interactions.
Often called "mono" for short, mononucleosis is an infection by the Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), one of the herpes viruses.
Prostate cancer and other diseases of the prostate are common.
Where can you as a parent turn to for the facts about vaccine safety? The first place to go is your child's doctor.
A personal health record is a documentation of your medical history and care. Although health care providers routinely keep such medical records, you can create your own record, and records for other family members.
Back pain may be caused by a pinched nerve. If you have pain, burning, or numbness, call your health care provider.
When you feel chest pain from blocked arteries, you might see an interventional cardiologist for treatment.
People with this disease can't tolerate gluten, a protein in wheat, barley and rye.
Diabetes is a chronic disease that involves the regulation of blood sugar and occurs in two different forms, type 1 and type 2.
Exercise-induced bronchospasm (EIB) used to be called exercise-induced asthma. The term bronchospasm means tightening and narrowing of the tubes that bring air in and out of your lungs.
It's a condition in which too much iron is absorbed from food and retained in the body.
Motion sickness occurs when your senses offer your brain conflicting reports about what you're doing.
Periodontal disease refers to more than one disease. It's a large collection of diseases involving your gums and the bones inside your mouth.
Pertussis, also known as whooping cough, is a highly contagious infection of the respiratory tract.
For some people, frightening memories of a terrible event can resurface months or even years after the ordeal. In reliving the event, people become fearful and unable to cope with daily life.
Rotavirus is a viral infection that causes severe diarrhea in children. A vaccine is now available to help protect youngsters against this illness.
Scalp ringworm isn’t caused by a worm. The infection is the result of a fungus, the same one that leads to athlete’s foot.
The gallbladder is a four-inch, olive-shaped muscular sac that lies under the liver in the right side of the abdomen.
Your sense of taste is brought to you by more than 10,000 little taste buds on your tongue that turn eating into a pleasurable experience.
The thyroid gland controls how fast your heart beats, how quickly you digest food, how much you sweat, the speed at which you burn calories, and many other activities.
Just what should kids be drinking? "I think good old H2O,'' says the director of the Nutrition Information Center in New York. But you can add pizzazz: Buy flavored water or make your own with lemon or lime.
You may think your child's first test will come in school, but it will actually happen before leaving the hospital's newborn unit. Early screening tests for babies can find problems before symptoms arise, prompting early treatment.
Doctors usually don't look inside your nose unless they have a specific reason. Usually, they are looking for an infection or allergy. Sometimes, they're looking for other sources of your breathing problem, such as a deviated septum, the term doctors use to describe a misalignment of the cartilage that runs down the center of your nose.
The two blood pressure numbers indicate how much pressure builds up in the arteries as the heart beats and between beats.
Most neck pain is caused by sleeping on a bed that’s too soft, poor posture, stress, neck strains or degenerative joint disease that occurs when the joints of the neck become inflamed or a disc pushes outward from its normal position.
Whether it's a twisted ankle, a shin splint or a strained muscle, when should you see a doctor for a sports injury?
Stroke may cause physical and mental difficulties. But the good news is that you can recoup some or all of your previous abilities.
If you or a family member has been diagnosed with a serious or chronic condition, you likely have a lot of questions regarding treatment and long-term health. Here are some suggestions on how to find accurate information.
Would you know what to do if a friend or acquaintance collapsed while you were there? Knowing how to respond in such a situation is crucial to the person's recovery.
Fight the impulse to rub furiously until the dust or dirt is gone. You might scratch your cornea or otherwise damage your eye.
Consider in advance what kinds of disasters might strike your area. Do you live in an earthquake zone? Is flooding a possibility? Then think about what you’ll do in an emergency.
If having surgery makes you nervous, imagine how it can seem for a child. By helping the youngster anticipate and face those fears, you can ease the trauma and smooth the way for a quicker, easier recovery.
Ultimately, there’s no right or wrong way to proceed. You just have to do the best you can.
There comes a time when even the closest families find themselves too close together.
A mammogram is an X-ray of the breast. It can find changes in the breast when a lump is too small for you or your doctor to feel.
A trip to an emergency room (ER) is something you or a loved one may never have to face. But it's wise to know something about emergency medicine in case the unexpected occurs.
Experts recommend that all herbal supplements be stopped two to three weeks before surgery. That's because these herbs can have side effects that could make surgery more dangerous for you.
Many factors are used to determine the need for joint replacement surgery. Some of the factors that you and your doctor will consider are the extent and nature of the damage to the joint in question.
Always read the label. All OTC medicine labels have detailed usage and warning information to help you choose and use the products.
Dogs are responsible for 85 to 90 percent of all animal bites. But, many incidents can be avoided.
Teething occurs when baby teeth start coming through the child's gums, usually between ages 6 months and 3 years.
Atherosclerosis can be devastating, causing strokes, heart attacks and death. The good news is that you can take steps to protect yourself from this disease.
Child abuse can happen in any family and in any neighborhood. Studies have shown that child abuse crosses all boundaries of income, race, ethnic heritage and religious faith.
Meningitis is an infection and inflammation of the membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord.
In many cases of suicide or attempted suicide, undiagnosed and untreated mental illness—especially depression—is to blame.
Here are answers to questions you may have about bird flu.
Here are suggestions on how to prevent most types of burns.
If your doctor recommends a hearing aid, these suggestions can help you determine which kind will suit you best.
Until recently, heroin was not considered a problem among children of middle-class parents. But lately, it has been showing up in new places.
Hives occur when something prompts cells to release histamine, a chemical found in the skin.
Every year, one in four Americans suffers from a diagnosable mental disorder that interferes with their ability to function at work or school or in their daily lives.
Strep bacteria pass from one person to another through nose and throat fluids when an infected person coughs or sneezes or touches another person or object with a hand contaminated by these fluids.
Although nausea and vomiting can make you feel miserable, it's important to remember that these are not diseases, but rather symptoms of many illnesses.
There are plenty of options to choose from if you want to get fit but don’t have 45 to 60 minutes daily to devote to exercise. But there’s a catch to taking shortcuts.
Here are some foods whose virtues you may be overestimating and foods you can substitute for increased nutrition.
Whether you buy a first aid kit at a drug store or put one together yourself, make sure it has all the items you may need, such as medications and emergency phone numbers.
Most food additives are safe and beneficial, experts say. What's more, they're everywhere.
How you deal with money depends a lot on your upbringing and cultural influences, which may leave you unhappy with the way you handle it.
Millions of Americans are affected by sinusitis every year. Even so, it's often misdiagnosed and misunderstood by people with the condition.
Certain risk factors increase the chance that a person will develop cancer. Many of these factors, such as smoking or eating an unhealthy diet, can be avoided. Others, such as family history and aging, can't, but everyone can benefit by avoiding known cancer risks.
In today's society, there's much confusion over what constitutes a healthy weight. Here are some ways to find out where you stand on the weight issue.
While it doesn't take long -- about 20 to 30 minutes -- for an ear, nose and throat specialist to remove a child's tonsils, a tonsillectomy should be recommended only after careful consideration.
Learning about grief and how it affects your family can help you get through the difficult times together. It may even help your family grow stronger.
The person in recovery may seem to have a different personality—more serious, more careful, more private—and the family may feel uncertain about how to relate.
A reward usually doesn't need to be extra large to modify a child's behavior, says a Vermont professor of psychiatry. An extravagant promise, however, "suggests that there's a struggle between parent and child."
Being a caregiver for a spouse who has cancer may be the toughest job you’ll ever have. It may also be the most vital and the most rewarding. As the spouse, you become part of the cancer treatment team.
When it comes time to eat vegetables, do your children do the Brussels-sprout pout? Well, don't give up. It can take eight to 10 tries before children accept a new food, experts say.
While it's true that stretching won't strengthen your heart or flatten your stomach, it can help you reach those goals more efficiently.
More than 3 million American children currently live with grandparents or other relatives. In nearly one-third of these households, grandparents are the primary caregivers.
Don't argue about cost. Do talk with your children about money management and media messages.
Everyone feels fatigued now and then, but when lifestyle changes don't ease your tiredness, it's time to talk with your health care provider.
If you feel depressed during fall and winter months, you may have a form of depression called seasonal affective disorder (SAD).
Two types of spiders found in the United States can cause illness in people. One type is the widow spider, of which the "black widow" is the best known. The other type is the fiddleback or fiddler spider, of which the brown recluse is the best known.
Doctors divide autoimmune diseases in two categories: Those that attack a specific organ and those that target many organs.
The 911 emergency response system, a hospital emergency room, and your doctor are your choices when you need prompt medical help.
Many childhood illnesses are mild enough to be treated at home. But what about when the symptoms are more severe?
Between regular appointments, what should you do if symptoms flare up, or new ones appear?
All women and men at average risk for colorectal cancer should have a screening test for colorectal cancer beginning at age 50. People who are at higher risk for colorectal cancer may need to begin screening tests at an younger age.
Here are some tips for deciding what to do when a child awakens with a health complaint and you must determine whether the complaint is serious enough to warrant a sick day.
What distinguishes mental illness from problems of daily living is its severity or persistence over time. Mental illness includes mental disorders of thought, mood or behavior. People with a mental illness may have great difficulty with daily routines and tasks, responsibilities of family, work or school, or personal relationships.
Eye allergies usually affect both eyes. The main symptoms of an eye allergy include itchy eyes, increased tearing, red or pink eyes, and mild swelling of the eyelids.
School avoidance syndrome, as described by doctors, is the most common cause of vague, unverifiable symptoms in school-age children and is triggered by stress, says a clinical professor of pediatrics.
These medications are life-giving and powerful. It's important to take them just as your doctor has prescribed.
A chronic, or long-lasting, illness can be difficult for anyone to deal with. But for a young child diagnosed with a chronic health condition, there are challenges for both child and parent.
Most medical professionals agree a fever by itself is not an illness; it is a symptom of an underlying problem. Fevers actually can be a positive sign the body is fighting an infection. However, a fever can cause discomfort for a child.
With knowledge, practice and a supportive health care team, you can take care of your child without diabetes taking over your lives.
Do you keep her home or send her off to school?
Even with some basic knowledge about how to accomplish weight-loss goals, 66 percent of us are still overweight.
It's normal to feel stressed or anxious now and then. But it's time to call for help if emotional issues interfere with your life, your job or your personal relationships.
Often these teeth are troublemakers that decide to turn crooked, refuse to grow in completely, or become misshapen.
It's important to note that it's not just how much extra body fat a person has, but where it is stored on the body that determines how risky the extra pounds are.
Better health for your teen could be as close as your breadbox. The more whole grains teenagers eat, the leaner they are and the less likely they are to develop diabetes.
This list of health care professionals, which excludes doctors, can help you understand the wide array of people called upon to render care.
Many people worry about having their large bowel examined with a colonoscope. While anxiety is normal, the colonoscope is an amazing instrument that gives gastroenterologists like me a very close view of the large bowel, also called the colon.
Calcium is one of the most important minerals in the body, and childhood is the critical period in life when calcium stores are laid down.
Vaccinations not only protect your child from deadly diseases such as polio, tetanus, and diphtheria, but they also keep other children safe by eliminating or greatly decreasing dangerous diseases that used to spread from child to child.
Carsickness isn't really about the car. It's about the brain's ability to interpret a message based on what it senses.
Achoo! Did you know that a sneeze is one of the body's natural defenses? It helps get rid of foreign invaders that sneak into your nose and threaten your lungs and other body parts.
A cataract is a clouding of the eye's lens, a clear, soft structure behind the pupil that works much like a camera lens. The top cause of cataracts is aging. In fact, more people over 70 have cataracts than not.
Fat cells store excess energy in the body. People who tend to become overweight aren't very good at burning up calories; instead they store them as fat.
Your scale may not hold the whole story on your weight. Here are other factors to consider.
How do you know the difference between ordinary cramps and a real medical problem? Take this quiz and learn some distinctions.
Children still need immunization because measles remains a significant threat abroad. Worldwide, more than 800,000 children die each year from measles.
The more sedentary you are, the more likely you are to lose flexibility, endurance, strength, balance and coordination, which in turn will affect every aspect of your life.
Most people are serving-size challenged, thanks to today's large portions: mega-muffins, heaping plates of pasta, behemoth burgers and extra-large bagels.
You know you should quit smoking. But you just haven't gotten around to it yet. Here are some reasons to help you commit to quitting.
Few tests can match the routine urine analysis for telling your doctor what's going on inside your body.
Did you know that electrical currents flow throughout your body? Because the strongest of these travels through your heart, doctors are able to monitor your heart by placing electrical sensors on the surface of your skin. They do this by giving you an electrocardiogram -- abbreviated either ECG or EKG (from the original German spelling of the word).
Did you know that at least 40 medical problems can be detected when your doctor examines your fingernails? Their color, shape and condition can tell your doctor a lot about your health.
When your doctor presses on your abdomen, he or she is feeling to see if any major internal organs are enlarged or tender, making them painful to touch, which could indicate disease.
You probably don't enjoy giving a blood sample, but it's an important part of a physical exam. From a small sample of your blood, your health care provider can order scores of tests.
The movies and television depict snoring as funny, even hilarious. But snoring is no joke: It's a medical problem that can have serious health and social implications.
Your doctor's stethoscope is a simple device that gives him or her crucial information about your heart.
The drops enable ophthalmologists to get a far better look at the tiny, complicated world inside your eyes.
When a family sits down together, it helps them handle the stresses of daily life and the hassles of day-to-day existence.
Did you wash your hands this morning? Bravo! Washing your hands helps prevent the spread of potentially dangerous germs.
About 80 percent of the water you take in comes from the water and other beverages you drink; the remaining 20 percent comes from food.
In adults, a screening blood sugar test is generally used to determine if your blood sugar is too high. For adults, having an elevated blood sugar usually will not give you symptoms and may indicate a pending or current problem with type 2 diabetes.
If you're scheduled for an X-ray or imaging test, here are some things you should know about various procedures, what they're used for and any risks involved.
Anyone who doesn't dress warmly enough or gets overheated then chilled while outside risks developing hypothermia.
Carbohydrates are one of the three main parts of food; fats and proteins are the other two. All three components can affect your blood sugar level, but carbohydrates do so more quickly.
Whether it’s a minor habit like biting your nails or a more serious one, like habitual drinking stopping a troublesome behavior is difficult. With a little hard work and strategy, however, it’s possible to break a bad habit.
A woman’s unique biological, social, and cultural factors may increase her risk for depression.
When a woman has a substance-abuse problem, her whole family is affected because she’s often the key to family stability.
Pregnant women with asthma are just as likely to have healthy, normal babies as women without asthma -- as long as their disease is kept under control.
Cancer survivors know how important a job can be to their psychological and financial well being. Here are tips to improve the ability to continue working, as well as some ways to handle workplace discrimination during treatment.
With a sailboat, canoe, kayak, windsurfing outfit or pair of water skis, you can explore a whole new world of activities. Once you've embraced proper training and safety, you'll get a fine, fun workout.
As people learn the benefits of keeping fit, the decision to join a health club can become easy. Deciding which one to join, though, can be tough.
The office may seem like an odd place to work out, but you spend most of your day there. Even short bursts of movement count.
Cold weather doesn't have to put a freeze on your outdoor exercise program. If you take precautions, you can still work out when the weather turns chilly.
Diabetes affects the body in many complex ways, and having a team to help you stay as healthy and vital as possible, for as long as possible, is key.
Whether you're stuck on an airplane or glued to a computer, staying put for hours can be risky.
Because a person with diabetes has poor blood circulation, wounds of all kinds heal slowly and are easily infected. In addition, high blood glucose leads to high levels of sugar in body tissues, causing bacteria to grow and infections to develop more quickly.
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