Bed Sores Pictures

Jun 29 2011 Published by admin under Uncategorized

What are Bed sores?

Bed sores, also identified as pressure ulcers or decubitus ulcers, are confined area of tissue death that are likely to progress when soft tissue is compressed between a bony prominence and an outside surface for an extended period of time. This kind of skin ulceration is mostly observed in patients who are bedridden and those who are improperly positioned in bed.

Because of the compression, blood flow to that area is radically reduced which causes blanching. The common compensatory response of the body when there is absent or reduced blood flow is vasodilation, so if the pressure is removed, the skin area takes on a brighter color or what we call reactive hyperemia. If the area blanches with fingertip pressure or if redness on the area fades away within 1 hour, tissue damage is negative. But if after one hour and there is still redness, then tissue damage exists. Other warning signs are discolored and swollen skin especially above the bony prominences and signs of infection.

In combination with pressure, there are few other forces which contribute to the formation of decubitus ulcers, such as shearing and friction. Shearing, which accounts for a high frequency of sacral bed sores, is the force applied against the skin surface when a patient is moved or repositioned in bed, by log rolling, pulling, pushing in bed. This action results in the straightening and tearing of small blood vessels, leading to a reduction of blood flow and later, necrosis. The second factor is friction. When two objects move across one another, for instance, when a client is pulled up in bed, the skin is rubbed against the bed sheet. This factor can eliminate the superficial layers of the skin, making it at risk to ulceration.

To prevent skin breakdown, it is essential to maintain proper skin care. The skin should be assessed once a day, paying particular attention to surfaces of bony prominences. The area must be kept clean and dry and free from irritation by urine, sweat, feces and others. The sacral area can be applied with a moisture-barrier cream. Massaging the bony prominences must be avoided since it will cause further deep tissue damage. If the tissue is already necrotic, it is an absolute must to get rid of it by debridement since necrotic or dead tissue is an perfect region for bacterial growth and has the capacity to seriously compromise healing of wound.

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Lipoma Pictures

Jun 23 2011 Published by admin under Uncategorized

What is Lipoma?

A lipoma is a benign tumor of the fat cells in a slim, fibrous capsule positioned just beneath the skin. It is acknowledged as the most common type of noncancerous soft tissue tumor. Lipomas can arise at any age, but these growths are most common in adult individuals aged 40 to 60 years old and very rare to occur in children.

The primary etiology is not yet established. A genetic involvement is possible which involves a gene rearrangement of chromosome 12. Assumption exists concerning a feasible association between blunt blow trauma and subsequent growth of lipoma.

Most of the lipomas are small, usually about 1 cm to 3 cm in diameter but can increase to sizes over and above 6 cm. But in most of the cases, the growth remains the same size over years or grows gradually. They are usually painless and have a soft, rubbery texture. A lipoma is easy to recognize as it moves promptly with minor finger pressure. They could emerge almost anywhere but these dome-shaped growths are most frequent to appear on the trunk, neck, shoulder, armpits, upper thigh and arms.

Generally, lipomas need not to be removed. Treatment is not necessary as lipomas are not cancerous. If in case the growth becomes painful and sore, cyclically gets to be infected or inflamed, empties an offensive-smelling discharge, expands in dimension or becomes cosmetically unappealing, a surgical removal is considered necessary. Treatment selections aside from surgical removal include the use of steroid injections to shrink the tumor and liposuction to remove fatty lumps.

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Acne Pictures

Jun 22 2011 Published by admin under Uncategorized

What is Acne?

Acne is a skin condition characterized by minor, although infrequently serious, skin eruptions due to inflammation around the sebaceous glands. It is most prominent on the face, chest, arms and back. Roughly about 85% of all people have acne outbreaks in some point in their lives.

Normally, the sebaceous glands produce a fatty, oily substance known as sebum, to protect and lubricate the skin. Acne results when the sebum flow is obstructed by dead skin cells, dried sebum or by bacteria. When there is a complete blockage, whitehead is produced. When the blockage is incomplete, blackhead results. In time, the clogged hair follicle enlarges, producing a bump. The follicles continue to enlarge until the walls rupture, permitting the normal skin bacteria to enter into the deeper layer of the skin. This will result to an inflammation. If the inflammation is close to the surface, this is termed as pustule, pimple for deeper inflammation and much deeper is called cyst.

Remove excess oil by regular gentle washing of the face with non-irritating unscented soaps. However, avoid vigorous washing and scrubbing as these may irritate the skin, making the acne worse. The use of over-the-counter preparations and topical solutions with benzoyl peroxide improves acne. If the acne is severe, dermatologists may prescribe topical and oral antibiotics. If the patient has drug-resistance to antibiotics, Accutane may be used as a substitute. If acne is fully managed, scars can be dealt with resurfacing derma procedure called dermabrasion. Except in severe cases where the skin eruption is widespread, normally acne is undisruptive and responds well to treatment.

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Squamous Cell Carcinoma Pictures

Jun 22 2011 Published by admin under Uncategorized

What is Squamous Cell Carcinoma?

Squamous cell carcinoma is a common, yet histologically-distinct skin cancer that starts when there is an uninhibited multiplication of malignant squamous cells, which normally are fine, flat cells that look like scales under magnification. These cells are located in the tissue that forms the skin surface, the respiratory and digestive tracts and lining of hollow organs. The incidence increases with age with an average peak incidence at 66 years old.

Chronic exposure to ultraviolet radiation from the sun and from tanning beds is the primary reason for the majority of the cases of this cancer. Other factors that can play a role to the development of squamous cell carcinoma are old age, family history, weak immunity, xeroderma pigmentosum, smoking and skin injury.

In this type of cancer, there is a relatively slow-growing bump that possesses a rough and scaly red patches located commonly on the face, neck, arms and hands and other sun-exposed areas. The lesion may appear as a hard plaque with small blood vessels. In addition, there is an irregular bleeding from the tumor, particularly on the lips.

The treatment is dependent on the tumor’s size and anatomical location, the number and the surgeon’s preference. Usually, the treatment is curative. In fact, if this is correctly treated, the cure percentage is about 95%. Squamous cell carcinomas are usually removed surgically via simple excision. Freezing with liquid nitrogen is a successful option for very small squamous cell carcinomas. If the carcinoma is larger than 2 centimeters, the most effective treatment is the Mohs surgery. If the patient has larger tumors, or is situated in a more challenging location, diagnostic tests such as ultrasound, computed tomography, or MRI to determine the degree of involvement and metastasis. If it is metastatic, radiotherapy might be the choice of treatment.

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Sebaceous Cyst Pictures

Jun 20 2011 Published by admin under Uncategorized

What is Sebaceous cyst?

Every so often labeled as an epidermal cyst, a sebaceous cyst is a sac below the skin which is filled with a fatty, cheesy-like, greasy substance.

Different factors predispose the person to develop sebaceous cyst. It could be a hereditary factor, high levels of testosterone, skin trauma or plugged sebaceous glands. Most often, it crops up from swollen hair follicles.

The major clinical manifestation is typically a minor, slow-growing, non-painful, freely movable nodule underneath the skin. Sebaceous cysts are most common to appear on the face, neck, chest and back. Yet, when infected, inflammation of the skin over the area occurs. The cyst may drain a cheesy, grayish-white and offensive smelling matter. These mobile bumps contain fibrous tissues, viscous, serosanguinous fluid, and a keratinous substance which gives off the characteristic foot odor smell.

It is best to ignore them because most often, sebaceous cysts disappear over time and are not dangerous. However these cysts may become inflamed and painful when attempted to squeeze. They may grow large enough and when this occurs, surgery may be compulsory for it to be excised. If they remain small, they can be treated with a steroid injection to reduce swelling. Another familiar and effective approach to help the cyst drain and heal is the placement of a warm compress directly over the area for about 15 minutes, two times a day for a duration of 10 days.

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Shingles Pictures

Jun 20 2011 Published by admin under Uncategorized

What is Shingles?

Herpes zoster, also known as shingles is a highly contagious disease attributable to the reactivation of the dormant human herpes virus type 3 virus situated in the dorsal nerve root ganglion of the spinal nerves. The virus can migrate along the path of a nerve to the skin surface causing a rash of painful blisters. This disorder affects only those who once have had chicken pox and commonly hits over age 50. In a client with a history of chickenpox, shingles can occur at some immunocompromised situations. Prognosis is good except when the virus extends to central nervous system.

It is still undefined how and why reactivation happens. It is assumed that the virus reactivates when, as a result of old age, illness, cancer, stress or immunosuppressant medications, the immune system turns out to be too vulnerable to keep the virus in a state of dormancy. After viral reactivation, the chicken pox virus travels down the sensory nerve into the skin to cause shingles.

In early stages, there is a tingling, itching, lightning bolt sensation followed by pain on one side of the body. One to three days after the pain starts, a rash with raised, red lumps and blisters erupts on the skin surface following a dermatomal outline or a ray-like distribution as blisters follow the pathway of individual nerves. They start to become pustules, and then scabs form by 10 days.

Separate the infected person from others because exudates from the lesions hold the virus. Maintain standard precautions. Use an air mattress on the bed and keep the atmosphere cool. Never scratch the skin where the rash is located to avoid the risk of secondary infections and scarring. To soothe the blisters, render cool water compress to suppurating blisters for 20 minutes many times a day. In the early stage of the disease, antiviral drugs may be combined with a strong corticosteroid to speed up healing and diminish the extent of pain. In the most critical situations, blocking agents are given via injection to stop pain signals from reaching the brain.

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Pityriasis Rosea Pictures

Jun 20 2011 Published by admin under Uncategorized

What is Pityriasis Rosea?

Pityriasis rosea is a non-dangerous skin rash but inflicts considerable distress on some people. It typically starts with a solitary mother patch lesion, and then after 1 to 2 weeks, a generalized body rash lasting about six weeks follows.

The cause is undefined but it suggests a viral infection as the culprit based on its clinical presentation and immunologic reactions. As evidence shows, there is viral reactivation of human herpes virus-6 and HHV-7 but this is not consistent to some other cases because no antibodies were identified. Adding to the controversy is the fact that HHV-7 is commonly found in healthy people.

In most of the reported cases, an upper respiratory tract infection comes first. Then, a single elliptical, red herald patches around 2 to 10 cm. emerges characteristically on the abdomen. On occasions, the mother patch may come out on hidden areas like in the armpit for instance. 7 to 14 days after the herald patch appeared, large daughter patches of red, egg-shaped rash come out on the upper body and can also appear in the mouth. On rare cases, an inverse distribution of the rash occurs mostly on the extremities. Generally, the red patches stretches broadly across the chest going by the rib-line in a Christmas-tree distribution. Several days later, small circular patches appear on the back, neck and on the cheeks. The prognosis is good, with patients recovering completely for only a matter of weeks or in some cases up to six months.

There is no definitive prevention as the cause is still undetermined. Similar with common viral infections, preventive measures include proper hygiene, frequent hand washing, avoiding crowded places and contact to people who cough and sneeze.

This skin condition usually goes away without treatment Antihistamines and topical corticosteroids provide relief from itching and improve the appearance of the rash. Steroids however may cause the new skin to take longer to tone with the surrounding skin color. Use only soap with moisturizer. Exposure to direct sunlight for about 10 to 15 minutes a day can help the lesions resolve quickly.

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Basal Cell Carcinoma Pictures

Jun 20 2011 Published by admin under Uncategorized

What is Basal Cell Carcinoma?

The most common type of skin cancer is the basal cell carcinoma. It is a type of non-melanocytic skin cancer that takes place from basal cells and accounts for approximately 75% of all skin cancer cases. Metastasis and mortality are rare, yet, it can bring considerable damage and disfigurement by invading proximate tissues of the eyes, ears or nose. Fair-skinned people with a family history of thus cancer are mainly affected.

Two thirds of the cases involves sunlight exposure as a significant factor, which confirms why tumors develop typically on sun-exposed areas such as the face, scalp, neck, torso, back, and legs. Exposure to sunlight leads to the formation of thymine dimmers which is DNA damage. Another risk factor is exposure to ultraviolet waves in tanning booths.

A basal cell carcinoma may appear at first as a little, shiny, semi-transparent dome-shaped tumor with rolled margins frequently covered by small, superficial blood vessels termed as telangiectases. Some basal cell carcinomas include melanin pigment causing a brown pigmentation. The open sore may bleed and heal again and again.

To make an accurate diagnosis, a shave biopsy is performed. A sample of the affected skin is taken out and is viewed under magnification to verify presence of cancer cells.

The modes of treatment adjust conditional on the size, level of penetration, and location of the basal cell tumor. Excision takes the cancer out. In curettage and electrodessication, the tumor is scraped away and electricity destroys any remaining cancerous cells. If the cancer has metastasized to organs or lymph nodes or in such cases when surgery cannot treat the cancer, radiation is desirable. If the basal cell carcinoma is under the superficial type, then topical creams with Imiquimod or 5-fluorouracil may be prescribed by the physician.

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Herpes Pictures

Jun 20 2011 Published by admin under Uncategorized

What is Herpes?

Herpes simplex is a sexually transmitted viral disease caused either by Herpes simplex virus type and type 2. The categorization into various distinct disorders is based on the site of viral infection.

The virus rotates between episodes of active disease where blisters holding the infectious virus particles appear persisting for about 2 to 21 days. The first period of this disease is typically worse than recurrences that appear in a while. The principal clinical manifestation of herpes is an attack of painful, irritating lesions on and around the reproductive organs or on or by the lips.

This is followed by a remission phase. Subsequent to the preliminary infection, the herpes viruses move all along the path to the ganglion where they become dormant and exist there for lifetime. Individuals can expect an outbreak if a tingling sensation is felt. During this time, they are acutely contagious even if the skin looks natural. Classically, the sores entirely heal but resurface at some time in the future when least anticipated. The reasons as to why the infection recurs are indefinite while a few possible triggers have been recognized together with the use of immunosuppressant medications, excessive sunlight exposure, hyperthermia, stress, acute illness, and weakened immune system.

The virus is easily transmitted by skin-to-skin contact with an active lesion or even with visibly normal skin but is shedding virus, kissing, or body secretions of an infected person. When the blisters have dried up and crusted over, the danger of infectivity is drastically lessened. To infect an individual, the virus penetrates through small breaks or even microscopic injury in the skin or mucous membrane sufficient enough to allow viral entry.

The most dependable technique to avoid the risk of herpes spread is by means of barrier protection. Limiting the number of sexual partners into one is another move toward prevention knowing that the chances of getting infected rises with the number of sexual partners an individual has.

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