Archive for " October, 2012 "

What is an overbite?

Overbite or deep bite is a type of malocclusion where there is excessive vertical overlapping of upper dental arch over the lower dental arch. The upper dental arch is larger than the lower dental arch which naturally allows the upper teeth to overlap lower teeth. This overlapping of the lower arch occurs in both horizontal and vertical direction. The term overjet is used for overlapping in the horizontal direction. The vertical overlap is known as overbite. An excessive overbite leads to formation malocclusion termed as deep bite. It is one of the most commonly encountered types of malocclusion with the opposite commonly referred to as an underbite.

What is cellulitis?

Cellulitis is a condition of localized or diffuse skin infection by bacteria that extends into the deeper layers under the skin (subcutaneous tissue). The most common sites of infection include skin of the lower leg and face, although cellulitis can affect any parts of the body. Usually a break in the skin, even a minor abrasion, provides entry of infective bacteria into the body and deeper layers of tissue. Cellulitis can be effectively treated with antibiotics but if left untreated it can lead to life threatening complications like sepsis, shock and gangrene.

Diarrhea is a symptom of some underlying disturbance of the gastrointestinal tract (gut), particularly the intestines. There are many diseases that present with diarrhea and on its own, it is difficult to identify the exact cause of diarrhea. Other symptoms need to be taken into consideration or tests may be necessary to identify the cause of the diarrhea.

Although most of us see diarrhea as very frequent or loose and watery stools, there definition in a bit broader. Sometimes in severe cases, diarrhea may be almost “explosive”. The passing of stool can seem “violent”, erupting with force and at times messing the toilet bowl extensively. Understanding some of the causes of explosive diarrhea is important as sometimes even the most harmless causes can present with violent bowel movements that may be concerning to a person.

What is brucellosis?

Brucellosis (Bang’s disease, Malta fever, Undulant fever, Mediterranean fever) is a highly infective zoonotic disease (disease that spreads from animals to humans) that is usually transmitted through the ingestion of unpasteurized milk, meat of infected animals and contact with body secretion of the animals. Even transmission from human-to-human and mother-to-child is possible although rare. Fever, sweating, body ache, muscle pain are the most common presenting features of brucellosis. Antibiotic therapy (tetracycline, rifampicin, streptomycin) is the mainstay of treatment. Pasteurization of milk and milk products (cheese) and proper handling of animals can prevent brucella infection.

What are benign brain tumors?

Brain tumors arise due to abnormal growth of the cells of the brain. Some are cancerous (malignant) while others are not (benign). In terms of benign tumors of the brain, these growths are usually slow growing, with a clear cut margin and do not spread to the surrounding tissue. Malignant brain tumors (cancer) are fast growing and rapidly spread to other parts of the brain or other organs. Brain cancer is often seen as more dangerous due to its life threatening potential. However, in the brain, even benign tumors are dangerous depending on the location of the brain where it occurs. Usually brain tumors do not recur after surgery and benign tumors rarely become cancerous (malignant).

What is bilharzia?

Bilharzia or snail fever (schistomiasis) is an infective disease caused by different species of trematodes (flukes) belonging to the genus Schistosoma. It is also referred to as bilharziasis. After malaria,  bilharziasis is the most common parasitic infection in humans. The disease spreads through contact with contaminated water. Snails act as the intermediary host between Schistosoma parasite and humans. The infection is not life threatening but when left untreated develops into chronic disease with chances of damaging internal organs and even leading to bladder cancer. The disease is highly prevalent (endemic) in tropical and sub-tropical countries due to poor sanitation.