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Comes from the greek word 'Arthron' meaning 'Joint' 'Itis' meaning inflammation Term is used to refer to a host of joint diseases including osteoarthritis, a common condition brought on by the wear and tear of old age


How arthritis works

In certain genetically susceptible people, the immune cells remain hyperactive long after the infectious agent has been cleared from the body. Those revived immune cells continue their blitz, in this case attacking the synovial joints, the hinged connections between many of the body's bones. Eventually causes destruction of the synovial membrane (the lining of the joint), the cartilage the cushions the bone ends and even the bone itself


What provides relief for those with arthritis?

Cortisone, a hormone produced by the adrenal glands


Term used to describe destruction of skeletal muscle



Describe how kidneys work

Kidneys are the first stop in the body's waste elimination system. Blood carrying waste flows into the kidneys via coils of porous capillaries. Wrapped around these capillaries are cells that act as gatekeepers, they keep big items like blood cells and large proteins inside the blood vessels and permit water, smaller proteins, and waster to pass into the kidney tubules, where, with more distilling, urine forms.


When muscle cells are cut off from their blood supply or violently stressed, they leak this type of protein:

Myoglobin, oxygen storing protein of the muscles Brown substance that is 1/4 the size of hemoglobin, which allows it to sneak through the meshwork in the kidney capillaries and clog the urine-forming draining tubules. The piled-up myoglobin is then exposed to increasing amounts of acid, which turns it into its noxious form. If this poisoning goes on, the kidneys stop working and no longer excrete potassium which can cause cardiac arrest.


What happens when a patient's muscle undergoes excessive swelling?

Too much swelling in muscles can squeeze tiny blood vessels shut, since muscles live in tough, inelastic fascia envelopes Muscle deprived of blood flow dies To avoid muscle death, the fascia that surrounds the injured muscle must be split open surgically


Why does inflammation occur when a muscle has been badly overstretched or torn?

Blood flows to the injury site to start repairing the damage by bringing in extra white blood cells and whisking away damaged cells Excessive swelling can put pressure on sensitive nerves and thwart healing by cutting off the delivery of oxygen needed to sustain stressed muscle tissue Experts say it is best to slow this process down with ICE



Rest Ice Compression Elevation This minimized blood flow to the injury site In 24-72 hours if injury is not too serious, some doctors suggest applying heat to restore flexibility and relive muscle cramping


Spina Bifida

a neural tube defect caused by an opening in the spine


the most common and sever form of spina bifida in which the spinal cord bulges outside the spinal column



how is spina bifida treated?

surgeons operate on babies by inserting the spinal cord back into its canal and sealing the opening with sutures If successful, this limits fluid buildup in the brained spinal cord and lessens the cord's pull on the brain


Within 24 hours of treating a patient's mini stroke w%ill cut their chances of having a stoke in the next 3 months by what percentage?



two different types of strokes:

ischemic hemorrhagic


ischemic stoke

a blood clot blocks blood flow to a portion of the brain


hemorrhagic stroke

a section of the artery bursts, bleeding into the brain


Facial nerve paralysis on the left side of the face. Note the drooping left side of the mouth (arrow) and the lack of contraction by the left orbicularis oculi when the woman tries to smile. 


Congenital muscular torticollis (CMT), often known as wryneck, is a condition where a newborn presents with a shortened and tightened sternocleidomastoid muscle. CMT is relatively common with estimates between 0.4% and 2% of births. It is thought to be a result of trauma resulting from either a difficult birth or prenatal position of the fetus 

 Notice the prominence of the sternocleidomastoid on the left (affected) side. 


A patient in an iron lung due to diaphragm paralysis 


rotator cuff inury

result of trauma or disease to any portion of the rotator cuff musculature or tendons.

Extensive use of the rotator cuff muscles can cause tearing of muscle fibers or rupture of tendon attachments.

Injury to the supraspinatus muscle is most common 

Common in baseball players


Another name for 'Tennis Elbow'

Lateral epicondylitis 


What is Lateral epicondylitis (Tennis Elbow)?

painful condition resulting from trauma or overuse of the com- mon extensor tendon of the posterior forearm muscles.

Although the pain is perceived as coming from the elbow joint, it actually arises from the lateral epicondyle of the humerus 

Lateral epicondylitis most often results from the repeated forceful contraction of the forearm extensors. These are the muscles used to extend the hand at the wrist, as when pulling a heavy object from an overhead shelf, shoveling snow, or hitting a backhand shot in tennis 


Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Any compression of either the median nerve or the tendons in the tunnel results in carpal tunnel syndrome.

A common cause is inflammation of any component in the carpal tunnel

 swollen tendons as a result of overuse.

Workers who repeatedly flex either their fingers or wrists, such as typists and computer programmers, experience this condition 



Groin Pull

caused by tearing, stretching, or straining the proximal attachments of the medial muscles of the thigh

the adductor muscles of the leg and/or the iliopsoas muscle.

This type of injury most frequently results from activities that involve rapid accelerations, as are called for in football, baseball, tennis, running, and soccer. 


Strained or Pulled Hamstring

violent muscular exertion sometimes causes the tendinous origins of the hamstrings to be avulsed (torn away) from their attachment on the ischial tuberosity.

The biceps femoris is especially susceptible to this type of stress injury 


shin splints

refers specifically to soreness or pain somewhere along the length of the tibia, usually on the inferior portion.

Causes of the syndrome include one or more of the following: (1) stress fractures of the tibia; (2) tendonitis involv- ing muscles of the anterior compartment muscles of the leg, often the tibialis anterior muscle; and (3) inflammation of the periosteum, called periostitis.

Shin splints often occurs in runners or joggers who are either new to the sport or poorly conditioned. Athletes who run on exceptionally hard surfaces (concrete, asphalt) or wear running shoes that do not properly support the foot are susceptible to shin splints. Some health-care professionals consider shin splints a compartment syndrome of the anterior compartment of the leg. 


Plantar fasciitis

is an inflammation caused by chronic irritation of the plantar aponeurosis (fascia).

Most often, the inflammation is greatest at the origin of the plantar aponeurosis on the calcaneus bone.

This condition is frequently caused by overexertion that stresses the plantar fascia, but it may also be related to age, since loss of elasticity in the aponeurosis, which is known to occur with age, seems to be a factor in developing this condition 


New Neurons in Adults?

For years, prevailing medical wisdom has maintained that the number of neurons you have shortly after birth is your supply for a lifetime 

there now appears to be a population of immature progenitor cells in the hippocampus that are called neural stem cells. These stem cells were once thought to give rise only to new glial cells in adults, but it is now clear that under special circumstances they can mature into neurons. Researchers have learned that the surrounding glial cells provide the chemical signals that direct a stem cell down the path of nerve cell maturation 



Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis 




Amytrophic Lateral Sclerosis

often called Lou Gehrig disease is a motor neuron disease

It affects neurons in both the brain and the spinal cord, leading to progressive degeneration of the somatic motor system. ALS patients generally have weakened and atrophied muscles, especially in the hands and forearms.

they may experience speech impairment, breathing difficulties, and chewing and swallowing prob- lems that result in choking or excessive drooling 

Does not affect sensory abilities like hearing, sight or smell


Multiple Sclerosis

progressive demyelination of neurons in the central nervous system accompanied by the destruction of oligodendrocytes 

the conduction of nerve impulses is disrupted, leading to impaired sensory perception and motor coordination. Repeated inflammatory events at myelinated sites cause scarring (sclerosis), and in time some function is permanently lost 

progresses slowly


Parkinson Desease

is a slowly progres- sive disorder affecting muscle movement and balance. The condition is characterized by stiff posture, tremors, and reduced spontaneity of facial expressions. It results from loss of cells that produce the neurotransmitter dopamine in a specific region of the brainstem 


Guillain-Barré syndrome 

disorder of the peripheral nervous system characterized by muscle weakness that begins in the distal limbs, but rapidly advances to involve proximal muscles as well (a condition known as ascending paralysis) 

inflammation causes loss of myelin from the peripheral nerves and spinal nerve roots.

Most cases of GBS are preceded by an acute, flulike illness 


Multifocal motor neuropathy 

an immune-mediated motor neuropathy that is sim- ilar to GBS but less severe. MMN is a demyelinat- ing condition that progresses slowly and usually presents with asymmetric weakness and variable degrees of muscular atrophy in the forearm and hand 


What are the two basic categories of Neural Tube Defects?


Spina Bifida



the substantial or complete absence of a brain as well as the bones mak- ing up the cranium. Infants with anencephaly rarely live longer than a few hours following birth 




Spina Bifida


Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy 



presents as a syndrome (set of symptoms) of chronic severe pain involving both the muscles and the skeleton, and accompanied by fatigue, morning stiffness, and sometimes psychological depression

 No single cause has been determined, but a number of contributing factors have been identified, including alterations in brain neurotransmitters, stress and anxiety, sleep disturbances, and possibly endocrine abnormalities 


Muscular Dystrophy

collective term for several heredi- tary diseases in which the skeletal muscles degenerate, lose strength, and are gradually replaced by adipose and fibrous connective tissue 


Duchenne Muscular Distrophy

almost exclusively a disease of males

Most common form of Muscular Dystrohpy

Walking is a problem; the child falls frequently and has difficulty standing up again.

The hips are affected first, followed by the lower limbs, and eventually the abdominal and spinal muscles.

Muscular atrophy causes shortening of the muscles, which results in postural abnormalities such as scoliosis 



common disorder usually associated with excessive use of the postural muscles.

Pain results when bands of muscle fibers tighten and then twitch after the overlying skin is stimulated.

This “trigger point” stimulation of the pain is a widely recognized feature of MPS 

As many as 50% of people, between the ages of 30 and 60, may be affected by this disease 


Another name for Bell Palsey

Idiopathic Facial Nerve Paralysis


Idiopathic Facial Nerve Paralysis

(Bell Palsy)

Unilateral paralysis of the muscles of facial expression .

This condition results from either disease or injury to the facial nerve 

also associated with exposure to cold temperatures, and is commonly seen in individuals who sleep with one side of their head facing an open window. Another possible cause of facial nerve paralysis is compres- sion of the facial nerve by an adjacent blood vessel 



When the eyes are improperly aligned, the condition is called strabismus

The misalignment means the eyes are not working synchronously to transmit a stereoscopic view to the brain.

With each eye sending a slightly different image, the brain becomes confused and ignores one of the images.

The ignored eye becomes weaker and weaker over time, resulting in a condition termed “lazy eye.” 



a form of spastic paralysis caused by a toxin produced by the bacterium Clostridium tetani only under anaerobic (lack of oxygen) conditions.

The toxin blocks the release of an inhibitory neurotransmitter called glycine in the spinal cord, resulting in overstimulation of the muscles and excessive muscle contraction 



potentially fatal muscular paralysis caused by a toxin produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. The toxin prevents the release of acetylcholine at neuromuscular junctions and leads to muscular paralysis 


Congenital Muscular Torticollis


often known as wryneck, is a condition where a newborn presents with a shortened and tightened sternocleidomastoid muscle 

It is thought to be a result of trauma resulting from either a difficult birth or prenatal position of the fetus. The trauma causes a hematoma and fibrosing of the muscle tissue 



The condition in which a portion of the viscera protrudes through a weakened point of the muscular wall of the abdominopelvic cavity 

A significant medical problem may develop if the herniated portion of the intestine swells, becoming trapped. Blood flow to the trapped segment may diminish, causing that portion of the intestine to die 



surgical incision made in the perineal skin and soft tissues between the vagina and the anus during childbirth to prevent tearing of the mother’s tissues and to minimize fetal injury 


Paralysis of the Serratus Anterior Muscle

(Winged Scapula)

long thoracic nerve is occasionally damaged or cut during surgical removal of the breast (radical mastectomy). Damage to this nerve causes paralysis of the serratus anterior muscle