Thursday, April 24, 2014

Diabetes and Peripheral Neuropathy

Many people are not aware that there is any connection between diabetes and peripheral neuropathy. Sometimes, neuropathy is the first signs that you may have diabetes. In the same way if you are a diabetic you may manifest symptoms of neuropathy.
About 60% to 70% of all people with diabetes will eventually develop peripheral neuropathy, although not all suffer pain. Yet this nerve damage is not inevitable. Studies have shown that people with diabetes can reduce their risk of developing nerve damage by keeping their blood sugar levels as close to normal as possible.
Let us take a look at diabetes and peripheral neuropathy
When the sugar levels in your body go up over the normal parameters, you are diagnosed as a diabetic. There are different types of diabetes. There are:
  • Juvenile diabetes
  • Type1 diabetes
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Gestational diabetes
  • Adult diabetes
  • Elderly diabetes
Some of these may overlap one another. For example, juvenile diabetes may disappear after the child reaches a certain age. Gestational diabetes crops up when a woman is pregnant. Adult diabetes can be Type 1 or Type 2. Elderly diabetes can also be either, but is happens as a part of aging.
Peripheral neuropathy
This could be a side effect of diabetes or a precursor to the fact that you are on your way to being a diabetic. The symptoms of neuropathy are:
  1. Numbness of the extremities
  2. Tingling in the extremities
  3. Feeling of pins and needles
  4. A prickly sensation
  5. A burning sensation
  6. Coldness of hands and feet
  7. Buzzing
  8. Sharp pinpoints of pain
  9. Stabbing pains
  10. Cramps
These symptoms are quite often worse at night. If you are a diabetic be on the lookout for these sensations.
      Sensitivity to touch. You will have a heightened sensitivity to touch, heat and cold
       Weakness in the muscles. You find it difficult to carry things, get up and sit down, walk, climb stairs etc.
       Problems with balancing. You may feel giddy headed and have problems with co ordination. This is caused by muscle damage.
         Fatigue. A feeling of always being tired.
If you aren’t a diabetic and you are experiencing these symptoms, you should see a doctor immediately and get our blood sugar tested to check if you have diabetes.
Get yourself checked as soon as possible
The combination of diabetes and neuropathy can be quite serious, and you should make sure that you are getting the best medical attention possible. Chronically high blood sugar levels can damage nerves. It may start in the extremities, but may soon spread to other parts of the body. Once the nerves are damages the messages between the brain and various parts of your body gets disrupted. So you will have unsteadiness, difficulty in co ordination, difficulty in talking etc, because of nerve damage.
You will also not be able to feel heat, cold, wounds, blisters etc. For example, if you get an infection or a wound, you may not feel pain because of nerve damage and when you do finally see a doctor, it may be too late as people with high blood sugar do not heal fast. This could also prove life threatening or may result in the loss of a limb.
The consequences can be life-threatening. An infection that won't heal because of poor blood flow causes risk for developing ulcers and can lead to amputation and even death.
If you have any of the above symptoms or if you are a diabetic, take your health seriously and see a doctor.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Finding a good dentist in the Bay Area

Most people take their teeth for granted. According to dentist and health experts, you should see a dentist every six months, to make sure that there are no problems. Do you know that many illnesses first manifest in the mouth? Ulcers and infections in the mouth could be precursors to some underlying medical problem. So it is important to have a regular dental checkup.
What are the factors that you have to consider when choosing a dentist?
  • Experience- It is always good to pick your dentist depending on how much experience they have. The more experience they have, the more that you can be assured that they will be able to diagnose your problem and give you the correct treatment.
  • Qualification- Make sure that the dentist that you pick is properly qualified. Good dentists will be listed and will have their qualifications available for you to take a look at. Do some research
  • Word of mouth- This sounds simple but actually is a good way to find an experienced dentist. If someone you know has a good dentist, and can recommend them to you, that gives you an assurance of the experience and work of the dentist
  • Location- Many people do not think of location when picking a dentist, as they feel that there is no way that they could have a dental emergency. But if you do have a dental problem at some point, and need to see the dentist often, isn’t it better to have a dentist who is close by.
  • Hours- this is another factor that people don’t consider when choosing a dentist. On a regular day, making an appointment and going for a dental checkup is okay. But if you have a sudden toothache or any other dental problems that may need immediate attention, then it is better to have a dentist who you can call at odd hours. Another reason why you should check the hours of the dentist is to see if it works for you in regard to your job timing or your children’s school timing etc.
  • Cost- When it is an emergency nobody minds paying whatever it takes to find release from the pain. But on a regular basis for ordinary checkups, you need a dentist who will suit your budget.
  • Rapport-You need to find a dentist that you have a good rapport with. Many people gave a big fear of a dental visit. So it is important to have a dentist who makes you feel comfortable and listens to your needs.
  • Emergency- You need to make sure that your dentist is there for you during an emergency. There is no harm in checking what emergency procedures your dentist will follow when you first visit them. Good dentists will have a protocol that should set your mind at ease.
  • Dental License- You can check with your state licensing board on the credentials of your dentist.

As you can see, finding a good dentist needs some time and effort because you are putting your teeth in their care. A dentist is usually for life, so when picking a dentist make sure that you have done your research well. If your dentist is retiring or moving, she/he would be the best person to suggest a new dentist for you to go to.
Take care of your teeth
Healthy teeth mean healthy bodies. By having a regular dental check up, you will ensure that your teeth last long and risk of illnesses and infections is kept at bay.

Thursday, April 10, 2014



Patient-Centered Medical Home (TM) 2011 standards emphasize enhanced care through patient- clinician partnership

WASHINGTON, DC- The National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) today announced that Indian Health Center of Santa Clara Valley has received  Recognition from the Patient-Centered Medical Home 2011 (PCMH 2011) program for using evidence-based, patient-centered processes that focus on highly coordinated care and long term participative relationships.

The patient-centered medical home is a model of care emphasizing care coordination and communication to transform primary care into “what patients want it to be.” Research shows that medical homes can lead to higher and lower costs, and improve patients ‘ and providers’ reported experiences of care. The PCMH identifies practices that promote partnerships between individual patients and their personal clinicians, instead of treating patient care as the sum of several episodic office visits. Each patient’s care is tended to by clinician –led care teams, who provide for all the patient’s health care needs and coordinate treatments across the healthcare system. Medical home clinicians demonstrate the benchmarks of patient- centered care, including open scheduling, expanded hours and appropriate use of proven health information systems.

“The patient-centered medical home raises the bar in defining high-quality care by emphasizing access, health information technology and partnerships between clinicians and patients,  “ said NCQA President Margaret E. Okane. PCMH Recognition shows that Indian Health Center of Santa Clara Valley has the tools, systems and resources to provide their patients with the right care at the right time.”

To receive recognition, which is valid for three years , Indian Health Center of Santa Clara Valley demonstrated the ability to meet the program’s key elements embodying characteristics of the medical home.

The standards are aligned with the joint principles of the Patient-Centered Medical Home established with the American College of Physicians, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Osteopathic Association.

Indian Health Center of Santa Clara Valley met key program components in the following areas:
·       Written standards for patient access and continuity of care
·       Use of patient feedback materials
·       Appropriate use of charting tools to track patients and organize clinical information
·       Responsive care management techniques with an emphasis on preventive care for individual patients and for the entire patient population
·       Adaptation to patient’s cultural and linguistic needs
·       Use of information technology for prescriptions, test and referral tracking and coordination with other health care providers
·       Use of evidence-based guidelines to treat chronic conditions
·       Measurement and reporting of clinical and service performance

To find clinicians and their practices that have been recognized by the Patient-Centered Medical Home 2011 program please visit For further information, contact NCQA Customer Support at (888) 275-7585.

About NCQA

NCQA is a private, non-profit organization dedicated to improving health care quality. NCQA accredits and certifies a wide range of health care organizations. It also recognizes clinicians and practices in key areas of performance. NCQA’s Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set (HEIDS(R) ) is the most widely used performance measurement tool in health care. NCQA is committed to providing health care quality information for consumers, purchasers, health care providers and researchers.