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Updated 02 July 2020

Featured medical condition centres: June

Each month Health24 will shine the spotlight on a few different medical conditions.

In the spotlight for June:

COPD

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a chronic lung disease characterised by obstruction of airflow that cannot be fully reversed with inhaler medications, called bronchodilators.

The most common symptoms of COPD are breathlessness and persistent cough with sputum production. As the condition worsens, even daily activities such as walking up a short flight of stairs or the exertion of washing or dressing become difficult.

This collection of diseases includes chronic bronchitis, emphysema and chronic obstructive airways disease. The importance of COPD as a global health problem cannot be overstated.

HEART HEALTH

1 in 3 men and 1 in 4 women will develop a heart condition before the age of 60. Lifestyle factors such as lack of exercise, stress, smoking and an unhealthy diet can lead to high blood pressure and cholesterol which subsequently may cause heart disease and heart failure.

It is important to note that heart attack symptoms in men and women can be very different. Whereas the typical heart attack warning sign for men is central chest discomfort or pain which may spread, women can have far subtler symptoms.

INCONTINENCE

Incontinence refers to either urinary incontinence which is the inability to control bladder function or faecal incontinence, the inability to control bowel function. Learn more about the symptoms, treatment options and causes of incontinence here.

SKIN

Your skin protects you from the elements of the environment and has to withstand a lot of wear and tear throughout the course of a lifetime. It is no wonder that there are so many ailments that affect the skin.

Understanding how your skin works can help you protect it from the elements, and consequently help you prevent cancer, premature ageing and dermatitis.

A good skin-care routine can help you to manage dry skin, acne and other skin problems effectively. Learn more about a range of skin conditions here.

SLEEP

For middle-aged adults, sleeping less than six or more than eight hours a night is associated with a decline in brain function. Sleep disorders may include insomnia and other sleeping disorders such as sleep apnoea, narcolepsy, restless leg syndrome, sleep terror disorder, and REM behaviour disorder.

Treatment can be completely different depending on the disorder but often involves a combination of lifestyle changes and medication.

Image credit: Unsplash

 
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2019-11-18 06:57

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