Archive | May 2021

QUOTE FOR THE WEEKEND:

“The good news is that if skin cancer is caught early, your dermatologist can treat it with little or no scarring and high odds of eliminating it entirely. Often, the doctor may even detect the growth at a precancerous stage, before it has become a full-blown skin cancer or penetrated below the surface of the skin.’

Skin Cancer Foundation

Part III Skin Cancer Awareness – Akinetic Keratosis & Keratoacanthoma.

Continuation of Types of skin cancer:

 

5-Akinetic Keratosis:

Actinic keratosis (AK) is a skin disorder that causes rough, scaly patches of skin. Another name for AK is solar keratosis. AK is a type of precancer, which means that if you don’t treat the condition, it could turn into cancer. Without treatment, AK can lead to a type of skin cancer called squamous cell carcinoma.

A condition which causes scaly patches on the skin from exposure to the sun over the years. It is commonly found on face, lips, ears, neck, back of the hand and forearms.  Very common (More than 3 million cases per year in US)
Rarely requires lab test or imaging.  Treatable by a medical professional.  Can last several months or years.
Knowing the causes, risk factors and warning signs can help you detect them early, when they are easiest to treat and cure.

The risk factors of Akinetic Keratosis are:

UV exposure from the sun or indoor tanning.

-History of skin cancer in particular history of actinic keratosis.

– Age over 40.

-Fair skin: People with fair skin including lighter color hair or eyes have an increased risk.

Warning Signs can help with early detection and treatment this can be successfully removed without complications. Look out for any new, changing or unusual skin growths, so you can spot skin cancers like BCC when they are easiest to treat and cure.

 

6-Keratoacanthoma (KA)

This is a slow growing cancer of the skin that looks like a dome or crater.  This is common; more than 200,000 cases per year in US.  Regarding treatment from medical professional is advised.  This condition often requires lab test or imaging.  Keratoacanthoma last several months.  It is common for ages 60 and older and is more common in males.
KA is benign despite its similarities to squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), or the abnormal growth of cancerous cells on the skin’s most outer layer. KA originates in the skin’s hair follicles and rarely spreads to other cells.  Commonly found in face, neck, hands, arm, and legs.
The risk factors of Keratocanthoma (KA):

UV exposure from the sun or indoor tanning.

-contact with chemical carcinogens, or cancer-causing chemicals

 -trauma 

-Infection with some strains of a wart virus, such as papillomavirus

-History of skin cancer in particular history of Keratoacanthoma.

Age over 60.

-People with fair skin.

Warning Signs can help with early detection and treatment, this can be successfully removed without complications if caught early. Look out for any new, changing or unusual skin growths, so you can spot skin cancers like BCC when they are easiest to treat and cure.

 

QUOTE FOR FRIDAY:

“Skin cancer is by far the most common type of cancer. If you have skin cancer, it is important to know which type you have because it affects your treatment options and your outlook (prognosis). If you aren’t sure which type of skin cancer you have, ask your doctor so you can get the right information.”

American Cancer Society

Part II Skin Cancer Awareness – Squamous Cell Carcinoma & Merkel Cell Carcinoma

Continuation of Types of Skin Cancer:

 

3-Squamous cell carcinoma – SCC

Squamous cell carcinoma is the second most common form of skin cancer in the United States. It accounts for about 15 percent of all skin cancers.  It is caused due to over production of skin cells. Squamous cell carcinoma of the skin is caused by DNA damage that leads to abnormal changes (mutations) in the squamous cells in the outermost layer of skin. This cancer is common (More than 200,000 cases per year in US).  The majority of squamous cell skin cancers are easily and successfully treated with current therapies.

Knowing the causes, risk factors and warning signs can help you detect them early, when they are easiest to treat and cure.

The risk factors of Squamous Cell Carcinoma are:

UV exposure from the sun or indoor tanning.

-History of skin cancer, including squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) or melanoma

– Age over 50: Most BCCs appear in people over age 50.

-Fair skin: People with fair skin have an increased risk.

Warning Signs can help with early detection and treatment this can be successfully removed without complications. Look out for any new, changing or unusual skin growths, so you can spot skin cancers like BCC when they are easiest to treat and cure.

IT’S A FACT, Squamous cell carcinoma is considered more aggressive than basal cell carcinoma.  If squamous cell carcinoma does spread to internal organs it can be life threatening. The quicker the treatment when SCC is in the one layer of skin only the better the results.  The primary symptom to look out for with SCC is a growing bump or lesion on the skin which has a rough scaly surface or flat red patches.

 

 

4-Merkel Cell Carcinoma

This is a type of skin cancer characterized by flesh-colored nodule that occurs on the face, head or neck. It begins in the cells at the base of the uppermost layer of the skin (epidermis).  A normal Merkel cell is a cross between a nerve cell and an endocrine (or hormone-producing) cell located on or just below the skin in the underlying tissue, and functions predominantly as a touch receptor. Merkel cell carcinoma occurs when these cells begin to grow uncontrollably.

Merkel cell tumors typically arise on, but are not limited to, sun-exposed parts of the body such as the face and neck. Their shape and color are less distinctive than other skin cancers, and they can often appear as an innocent pink pearly nodule. As a result, it is usually only the speed with which they grow that attracts the attention of patients and their doctors.

With early detection and treatment, Merkel cell carcinoma can be well contained and even cured. Treatment becomes more difficult as the tumor grows and spreads, but aggressive therapy can still lead to high rates of survival.

Again, Warning Signs can help with early detection and treatment this can be successfully removed without complications. Look out for any new, changing or unusual skin growths, so you can spot skin cancers like BCC when they are easiest to treat and cure.

Risk Factors of Merkel Cell Carcinoma:

UV exposure from the sun or indoor tanning.

-History of skin cancer, including squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) or melanoma

– Age over 50: Most BCCs appear in people over age 50.

-Fair skin: People with fair skin have an increased risk.

-Male gender: Men are more likely to develop BCC.

-Chronic infections and skin inflammation from burns, scars and other conditions-weakens the immune system.

-Merkel Cell Virus.  Recently, researchers have linked a virus to many cases of Merkel cell carcinoma. However, it remains to be determined if the Merkel cell polyomarvirus causes the disease, and if it might help guide future treatment. If so, the virus could offer promising new targets for immunotherapy.

IT’S A FACT, Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital in NYC states  “Merkel cell carcinoma, also called neuroendocrine cancer of the skin, is an aggressive type of skin cancer that affects only about 400 people in the United States each year. But like other skin cancers, that number is growing.”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1.Basal Cell Carcinoma

Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is the most common form of skin cancer and the most frequently occurring form of all cancers. In the U.S. alone, an estimated 3.6 million cases are diagnosed each year. BCCs arise from abnormal, uncontrolled growth of basal cells.  Basal Cell Carcinoma grows slowly, most are curable and cause minimal damage when caught and treated early.

Knowing the causes, risk factors and warning signs can help you detect them early, when they are easiest to treat and cure.

The risk factors of BCC are:

UV exposure from the sun or indoor tanning.

-History of skin cancer, including squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) or melanoma

– Age over 50: Most BCCs appear in people over age 50.

-Fair skin: People with fair skin have an increased risk.

-Male gender: Men are more likely to develop BCC.

-Chronic infections and skin inflammation from burns, scars and other conditions.

Warning Signs can help with early detection and treatment, almost all basal cell carcinomas (BCCs) can be successfully removed without complications. Look out for any new, changing or unusual skin growths, so you can spot skin cancers like BCC when they are easiest to treat and cure.

IT’S A FACT 90% of nonmelanoma skin cancers (mainly BCCs and SCCs) are associated with exposure to UV radiation from the sun.

QUOTE FOR THURSDAY:

“Skin cancer — the abnormal growth of skin cells — most often develops on skin exposed to the sun. But this common form of cancer can also occur on areas of your skin not ordinarily exposed to sunlight.

There are three major types of skin cancer — basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma.”

MAYO CLINIC

Part I Skin Cancer Awareness

  BASAL CELL CARCINONA

 

 

Skin cancer — the abnormal growth of skin cells — most often develops on skin exposed to the sun. But this common form of cancer can also occur on areas of your skin not ordinarily exposed to sunlight.

There are three major types of skin cancer — basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma.

You can reduce your risk of skin cancer by limiting or avoiding exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation. Checking your skin for suspicious changes can help detect skin cancer at its earliest stages. Early detection of skin cancer gives you the greatest chance for successful skin cancer treatment.

There are different types of skin cancer, which are:

1.Basal Cell Carcinoma

Basal cell carcinoma (BCC) is the most common form of skin cancer and the most frequently occurring form of all cancers. In the U.S. alone, an estimated 3.6 million cases are diagnosed each year. BCCs arise from abnormal, uncontrolled growth of basal cells.  Basal Cell Carcinoma grows slowly, most are curable and cause minimal damage when caught and treated early.

Knowing the causes, risk factors and warning signs can help you detect them early, when they are easiest to treat and cure.

The risk factors of BCC are:

UV exposure from the sun or indoor tanning.

-History of skin cancer, including squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) or melanoma

– Age over 50: Most BCCs appear in people over age 50.

-Fair skin: People with fair skin have an increased risk.

-Male gender: Men are more likely to develop BCC.

-Chronic infections and skin inflammation from burns, scars and other conditions.

Warning Signs can help with early detection and treatment, almost all basal cell carcinomas (BCCs) can be successfully removed without complications. Look out for any new, changing or unusual skin growths, so you can spot skin cancers like BCC when they are easiest to treat and cure.

IT’S A FACT 90% of nonmelanoma skin cancers (mainly BCCs and SCCs) are associated with exposure to UV radiation from the sun.

2. Melanoma

Melanoma is a type of cancer that usually begins in the skin. Specifically, it begins in cells called melanocytes. These are cells that produce melanin. Melanin is the pigment that gives skin, hair, and eyes their color.

Melanoma is among the most serious forms of skin cancer. 

Melanoma is the deadliest type of skin cancer. It can be “in situ” which means that the cancer is confined to the top layer of skin, thus being highly curable. It can also be “malignant” which means that the cancer can spread to other parts of the body which significantly decreases the survivability rate. Melanoma in situ can grow to be malignant melanoma if not treated. The key to surviving melanoma is early detection, and especially before it becomes malignant. Melanoma caught in the early stages of its development is highly curable with a 97% survival rate.

Risk Factors of Melanoma are:

-Ultraviolet light exposure

-Moles

-Fair skin, freckling, light hair

-Family history of melanoma

-Personal history of melanoma or skin cancers

-Having a weakened immune response

-Being older

-Being male

-Xeroderma pigmentosum (XP): This is a rare, inherited condition that affects skin cells’ ability to repair damage to their DNA. People with XP have a high risk of developing melanoma and other skin cancers when they are young, especially on sun-exposed areas of their skin.

Again warning signs can count help with early detection and treatment this can be successfully removed without complications. Look out for any new, changing or unusual skin growths, so you can spot skin cancers like BCC when they are easiest to treat and cure.

IT’S A FACT Only 20-30% of melanomas are found in existing moles.  While 70-80% arise on normal-looking skin.

 

 

 

 

 

 

QUOTE FOR WEDNESDAY:

“In 2018, 1 in every 6 deaths from cardiovascular disease was due to stroke.  Someone in the United States has a stroke every 40 seconds. Every 4 minutes, someone dies of stroke.  Every year, more than 795,000 people in the United States have a stroke. About 610,000 of these are first or new strokes.”

Center for Disease Control and Prevention

Part III Stroke Awareness – Rx and how to prevent one!

Part III stroke   stroke III

Part III stroke  Part III stroke

A.) TREATMENT OF STROKES

If you’re having a stroke, it’s critical that you get medical attention right away. Immediate treatment may minimize the long-term effects of a stroke and prevent death.

Ischemic Stroke Treatment

1.)tPA, the Gold Standard

The only FDA approved treatment for ischemic strokes is tissue plasminogen activator (tPA, also known as IV rtPA, given through an IV in the arm). tPA works by dissolving the clot and improving blood flow to the part of the brain being deprived of blood flow. If administered within 3 hours(and up to 4.5 hours in certain eligible patients), tPA may improve the chances of recovering from a stroke. A significant number of stroke victims don’t get to the hospital in time for tPA treatment; this is why it’s so important to identify a stroke immediately.

2.)Endovascular Procedures

Another treatment option is an endovascular procedure* called mechanical thrombectomy, strongly recommended, in which  trained doctors try  removing a large blood clot by  sending a wired-caged device called a stent retriever, to the site of the blocked blood vessel in the brain. To remove the brain clot, doctors thread a catheter through an artery in the groin up to the blocked artery in the brain. The stent opens and grabs the clot, allowing doctors to remove the stent with the trapped clot. Special suction tubes may also be used. The procedure should be done within six hours of acute stroke symptoms, and only after a patient receives tPA.   *Note: Patients must meet certain criteria to be eligible for this procedure. Image courtesy of Medtronic

Hemorrhagic Stroke Treatment

1.)Endovascular Procedures Endovascular procedures may be used to treat certain hemorrhagic strokes similar to the way the procedure is used for treating an ischemic stroke. These procedures are less invasive than surgical treatments, and involve the use of a catheter introduced through a major artery in the leg or arm, then guided to the aneurysm or AVM; it then deposits a mechanical agent, such as a coil, to prevent rupture.

2.)Surgical Treatment For strokes caused by a bleed within the brain (hemorrhagic stroke), or by an abnormal tangle of blood vessels (AVM), surgical treatment may be done to stop the bleeding. If the bleed is caused by a ruptured aneurysm (swelling of the vessel that breaks), a metal clip may be placed surgically at the base of the aneurysm to secure it.

B.) How to prevent a stroke!

Treatment is also aimed at other factors that put you at risk, including high blood pressure, diabetes, and high cholesterol. But it takes more than just your doctor’s efforts. You also have an important role to play in preventing stroke. It’s up to you to make lifestyle changes that can lower your risk.

What you can do to prevent a stroke:

1-Control your blood pressure.

2-Lose Weight to the point that your in a healthy weight for your height. If you’re overweight, losing as little as 10 pounds can have a real impact on your stroke risk.      Try to eat no more than 1,500 to 2,000 calories a day (depending on your activity level and your current body mass index). Increase the amount of exercise you do with such activities as walking, golfing, or playing tennis, and by making activity part of every single day.

3-Exercise More-Exercise contributes to losing weight and lowering blood pressure, but it also stands on its own as an independent stroke reducer. Exercise at a moderate intensity 5x/wk and if you can’t do ½ hr as day spread it out into 2 15minute exercise moments for the day.

4- Drink-in moderation What you’ve heard is true. Drinking can make you less likely to have a stroke—up to a point. “Studies show that if you have about one drink per day, your risk may be lower. I am not saying drink one glass of liquor a day but if you have to limit it to one glass a day. Red wine your first choice, because it contains resveratrol, which is thought to protect the heart and brain.

5-Atrial Fibrillation-Atrial fibrillation is a form of irregular heartbeat that causes clots to form in the heart. Those clots can then travel to the brain, producing a stroke. “Atrial fibrillation carries almost a fivefold risk of stroke, and should be taken seriously; take your anticoagulant medication the MD orders to keep the blood thin to prevent clotting.

6-Treat diabetes –Having high blood sugar over time damages blood vessels, making clots more likely to form inside them putting the person at higher risk for a stroke. So simply keep your sugar under control.

7-QUIT Smoking-Along with a healthy diet and regular exercise, smoking cessation is one of the most powerful lifestyle changes that will help you reduce your stroke risk

 

 

QUOTE FOR TUESDAY:

“A stroke occurs when blood flow to the brain is blocked. Blood brings oxygen and nutrients to the cells. Without blood, brain cells die. This means that a section of the brain starts breaking down and brain function is altered. The quicker a stroke is addressed, the less brain damage there will be and the better the recovery. Strokes are usually painless, but there are signs.”

HealthPrep

Part II Stroke awareness – Symptoms of a Stroke and Dx!

stroke part II  stroke part IIb

Signs and Symptoms of a stroke happening:

Symptoms of stroke include trouble walking, speaking, and understanding, as well as paralysis or numbness of the face, arm, or leg.

People may experience the following:                                                                      

Muscular: difficulty walking, paralysis with weak muscles, problems with coordination, stiff muscles, overactive reflexes, or paralysis of one side of the body

Visual: blurred vision, double vision, sudden visual loss, or temporary loss of vision in one eye

Whole body: balance disorder, fatigue, or lightheadedness

Speech: difficulty speaking, slurred speech, or speech loss

Sensory: pins and needles or reduced sensation of touch

Facial: muscle weakness or numbness

Limbs: numbness or weakness

Also common: difficulty swallowing, headache, inability to understand, mental confusion, numbness, or rapid involuntary eye movement

What is done for a stroke regarding diagnostic tooling:

 To determine the most appropriate treatment for your stroke, your emergency team needs to evaluate the type of stroke you’re having and the areas of your brain affected by the stroke. They also need to rule out other possible causes of your symptoms, such as a brain tumor or a drug reaction. Your doctor may use several tests to determine your risk of stroke, including:

CT scan of brain tissue damaged by stroke

Cerebral angiogram A cerebral angiogram showing a carotid aneurysm due to a stroke.

Physical examination. Your doctor will ask you or a family member what symptoms you’ve been having, when they started and what you were doing when they began. Your doctor then will evaluate whether these symptoms are still present.

Your doctor will want to know what medications you take and whether you have experienced any head injuries. You’ll be asked about your personal and family history of heart disease, transient ischemic attack or stroke.

Your doctor will check your blood pressure and use a stethoscope to listen to your heart and to listen for a whooshing sound (bruit) over your neck (carotid) arteries, which may indicate atherosclerosis. Your doctor may also use an ophthalmoscope to check for signs of tiny cholesterol crystals or clots in the blood vessels at the back of your eyes.

Blood tests. You may have several blood tests, which tell your care team how fast your blood clots, whether your blood sugar is abnormally high or low, whether critical blood chemicals are out of balance, or whether you may have an infection. Managing your blood’s clotting time and levels of sugar and other key chemicals will be part of your stroke care.

Computerized tomography (CT) scan. A CT scan uses a series of X-rays to create a detailed image of your brain. A CT scan can show a hemorrhage, tumor, stroke and other conditions. Doctors may inject a dye into your bloodstream to view your blood vessels in your neck and brain in greater detail (computerized tomography angiography).  The goal is if the CT scan determined the stroke to be a ischemic stroke start rtpa a drug IV if the symptoms of the stroke started in the past 3 hrs if not treat it another way OR if the stroke is determined to be hemorrhagic than its the OR.  Will go into treatment in more detail in Part III tomorrow.

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). An MRI uses powerful radio waves and magnets to create a detailed view of your brain. An MRI can detect brain tissue damaged by an ischemic stroke and brain hemorrhages. Your doctor may inject a dye into a blood vessel to view the arteries and veins and highlight blood flow (magnetic resonance angiography, or magnetic resonance venography).

Carotid ultrasound. In this test, sound waves create detailed images of the inside of the carotid arteries in your neck. This test shows buildup of fatty deposits (plaques) and blood flow in your carotid arteries.

Cerebral angiogram. In this test, your doctor inserts a thin, flexible tube (catheter) through a small incision, usually in your groin, and guides it through your major arteries and into your carotid or vertebral artery. Then your doctor injects a dye into your blood vessels to make them visible under X-ray imaging. This procedure gives a detailed view of arteries in your brain and neck.

Echocardiogram. An echocardiogram uses sound waves to create detailed images of your heart. An echocardiogram can find a source of clots in your heart that may have traveled from your heart to your brain and caused your stroke.

You may have a transesophageal echocardiogram. In this test, your doctor inserts a flexible tube with a small device (transducer) attached into your throat and down into the tube that connects the back of your mouth to your stomach (esophagus). Because your esophagus is directly behind your heart, a transesophageal echocardiogram can create clear, detailed ultrasound images of your heart and any blood clots.

In reality going to an ER room if the pt comes suspected of a stroke and has symptoms or not than nationally in America the hospitals are to do the following:

-A neuro assessment should be done in 10 minutes  by the doctor.

-A CT SCAN ordered and pt sent off for the CT SCAN test and done within 25 minutes.

-The CT SCAN read and interpreted by the radiologist / neuro doctor within 45 minutes.                        At this point it tells the MD if the pt has a blockage or a hemmorage in the brain that caused the stroke. Remember a ischemic stroke and hemmoragic stroke are treated differently.

We’ll get into treatment tomorrow in Part III Treatment of a stroke.