What Is A ‘Minimally Invasive Procedure’?

When it comes to surgical interventions performed on internal organs, joints or blood vessels, the treatment options include both conventional and so-called minimally invasive procedures. While both types of interventions are forms of surgery, conventional surgical treatments and minimally invasive options are different in many ways. Here are some features of minimally invasive interventions that you should know about before choosing the option.

The Most Important Differences between Conventional Surgery and Minimally Invasive Procedures

Minimally invasive procedures, as the name suggests, are interventions that involve surgical incisions that are much smaller than the incisions involved with conventional surgical interventions. Minimally invasive procedures also take shorter to perform than conventional surgery, which also means that the modern version of the intervention is much less demanding on the patient’s body. The incisions being smaller, the recovery time that follows minimally invasive solutions is usually much shorter than in the case of conventional surgery – while minimally invasive procedures usually require only a couple of days of hospital treatment or can be performed as outpatient treatment, the conventional surgeries used for treating the same conditions might involve weeks of hospital treatment and months of recovery. The recovery period with minimally invasive procedures is also easier and less painful for the patient.

vascular specialists near me

Some Examples of Minimally Invasive Surgical Interventions

Modern medical technology today allows for performing minimally invasive interventions to treat a very wide range of conditions. According to vascular specialists near me, here are some examples:

  • Arthroscopic surgery – these interventions are performed with the help of a thin fiber optic video camera through a tiny incision into the joint to be treated with the purpose of examining, diagnosing or even treating the joint;
  • Bronchoscopy – these interventions also involve the insertion of a camera, but this time into the lungs to diagnose lung disease, blockages or to take samples of lung tissue or fluid;
  • Endoscopy – the same method, used to diagnose and examine the digestive tract;
  • Laparoscopy – the method is used for a variety of illnesses that used to be treated with open surgery, such as hysterectomy. The method involves the inserting of a tube with a light and a camera that sends images to a monitor. The camera and various additional tools are used together not only for diagnostic purposes, but also for surgical interventions, such as the removal of a tumor or of an organ, such as uterine fibroids or appendices.

The Benefits of Minimally Invasive Procedures

Besides shorter recovery and shorter intervention duration, minimally invasive procedures have lots of other benefits as well:

  • The interventions do not require deep cuts through muscles and other types of tissue; therefore, they are less traumatic for the patient;
  • Less scarring – many of these procedures involve very small incisions or holes that heal almost completely;
  • Safety – these methods reduce the risk of infections and complications to the minimum and blood loss is also minimal. These qualities also make minimally invasive interventions suitable for patients who are not suitable candidates for conventional interventions due to some underlying physical condition.

How Are Medicare Advantage Plans Able to Provide More Benefits Than Original Medicare?

Medicare Consultants Denver

Medicare Advantage, also known as Medicare Part C, is a great alternative for enrollees in Part A, Part B and some types of Part D plans that allow participants to configure the health insurance plan that best suits their specific requirements and that provide access to high-quality assistance and treatment through the private providers in the network. Here are some of the benefits of Medicare Advantage plans that make the switch from the federally administered Original Medicare worthwhile.

Level of Coverage and Types of Services

Medicare Advantage plans must offer at least the same level of coverage as Original Medicare, but Advantage plans usually go beyond the range of services available through Original Medicare, typically adding important services, such as dental care, vision care, hearing aids, memberships at fitness centers in the network and coverage for prescription drugs.

Your Medicare Advantage Plan Might Cost You Less

The costs related to Medicare Advantage plans are determined by many aspects and they can run quite high, but in some cases, they might cost less than Original plans or they can even be reduced to zero. Medicare Advantage plans also come with limits for the maximum out-of-pocket expense that the beneficiary is allowed to pay, which means that once the beneficiary has spent the entire sum allowed, they will not pay more during the year in course (Original Medicare does not have such limitations, which means that the cost burden to be supported by the beneficiary can be limitless).

A One-Stop Solution

Medicare Advantage plans can be configured to include all the services that the beneficiary needs, including the basic level of care as well as the added benefits. This means that the beneficiary can enjoy the special convenience of having to deal with only one plan administrator.

Local Provider Networks and Requirements Regarding Service Areas

Medicare Advantage plans usually work with local networks of healthcare providers, being an excellent choice for anyone who is happy working with the best local Denver specialists. However, the feature might make people who travel a lot reconsider, as turning to healthcare providers outside the network of the specific policy or abroad might not be covered under Medicare. You should also know that one of the eligibility conditions that Medicare Advantage candidates must fulfill is at least 6 months of continuous residence in the service area – a condition that is easy to meet for some people, impossible for others.

Professional Help Available

Medicare Advantage plans are incredibly varied, which means that you can surely find the best configuration for your particular situation and also that putting together that configuration is not easy. If you feel overwhelmed by the variety of the available plan types, do not despair – there are many independent Medicare Consultants Denver has, such as insurance agents and brokers, who specialize in Medicare Advantage plans. These professionals can provide recommendations as well as practical assistance in choosing the components that should be included into the client’s plan to provide the best, most comprehensive type of coverage that suits the client’s health condition as well as their financial means.

How Does a Person Typically Qualify for Memory Care Assisted Living?

The elderly population is in continuous growth and so is the number of elderly people who need to move to a memory care facility because they are suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, from some other type of dementia or of mental impairment that compromises their ability to live alone safely. There are many types of care homes available for those who have become frail or ill to the extent that living alone is no longer a good option – here are some issues to indicate that Alzheimers Care Facilities would be the best option for your loved one.

What Is, in fact, a Memory Care Facility?

Memory care is a type of intensive, specialized care dedicated to sufferers of Alzheimer’s or of other forms of dementia, available either in stand-alone facilities or in the memory-care units of assisted living facilities. These units only accept people suffering from memory impairment, usually based on the person’s medical records or based on a recent evaluation by a specialist.

Alzheimers Care Facilities

The care that residents benefit from in Alzheimers Care Facilities include the services provided by assisted living facilities, such as meals and help with daily chores, such as dressing, bathing and taking medications as well as care services dedicated especially to dementia sufferers, developed to keep residents happy and independent as much as possible and to keep up their quality of life. The staff working in these facilities are qualified to provide specialized care to these residents with special needs and the environment in these homes is also developed to provide maximum safety to the residents. People suffering from dementia have a tendency to wander and they often get confused about their surroundings and the people around them – the care stuff receive special training to be able to handle such issues and the spaces in memory facilities are all developed in a way to provide the highest level of comfort to frail residents.

How to Determine Whether Your Loved One Needs Memory Care?

Most memory care facilities accept people based on a medical diagnosis, but it is very important for caregivers to be aware of the early signs that their loved one needs a thorough medical check-up and that it is probably a good idea to start searching for a suitable care facility. Here are some signs that indicate your loved one’s mental and cognitive status has started changing:

  • Changes in behavior – many people with dementia start acting differently as their disease progresses. In many cases, those changes include withdrawal from activities previously enjoyed, verbal or even physical aggression towards their caregivers as well as changes at the level of personal hygiene, such as neglecting bathing;
  • Confusion and disorientation – dementia sufferers might forget the rules of the road and they might lose their ability to navigate even familiar areas, such as the neighborhood;
  • Physical changes – deteriorating general health is often another sign of progressing dementia. The problem is sometimes caused by the dementia sufferer forgetting to take their medication as they should or forgetting having taken their meds and taking too much, in other cases, the problem is caused by a loss of appetite and by the progression of comorbidities.

What Are New Treatments for Uterine Fibroids?

Uterine fibroids are growths on the uterus that are not related to cancer. Fibroids range in size from the very small, invisible to the human eye, to large, capable of distorting the uterus. They are not associated with the risk of cervical cancer. However, they may negatively impact fertility and pregnancy; therefore they should not be left untreated.

Who Is More Likely to Develop Uterine Fibroids?

Uterine fibroids have several causes and risk factors. Starting with the risk factors, these are:

  • Race – Black women are more likely to develop uterine fibroids than any other races
  • Heredity – women whose mothers and sisters suffer from uterine fibroids are predisposed to develop this condition, as well
  • Early onset of menstruation
  • Vitamin D deficiency.

As for the causes of uterine fibroids outside these risk factors, doctors believe that genetics and hormones play a key role. They noticed that fibroids tend to shrink after menopause, thus, the lower level of estrogen and progesterone are linked to their involution.

Symptoms of Uterine Fibroids

Women who have uterine fibroids usually experience heavy and painful menstruations, as well as menstrual periods that last more than 7 days. Other frequent symptoms are:

  • Pelvic pain or pressure
  • Frequent urination
  • Inability to empty the bladder completely
  • Backache
  • Constipation.

treatment for uterine fibroids

Types of Treatments of Uterine Fibroids

Traditionally, uterine fibroids were treated with a combination of hormone-based oral medication, including contraceptives. In some cases, an intrauterine device would be inserted to release progestin locally. However, hormonal drugs have many negative side effects, such as hot flashes and reduced bone density. Moreover, some of these drugs treat the symptoms, but do not reduce the size of the uterine fibroids.

In other cases, the patients received nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), which relieve pain, but do not reduce the menstrual blood flow.

Fortunately, new and modern treatment for uterine fibroids exists. Their aim is to eliminate uterine fibroids, not just provide relief for the symptoms. They are categorized in two types:

  1. Non-invasive Procedure

The non-invasive procedure for eliminating uterine fibroids is the MRI-guided focused ultrasound surgery. While the patient is placed inside a MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scanner, the doctor uses an ultrasound transducer, focusing the sound waves directly towards the fibroids. The transducer generates heat that destroys the fibroid tissue.

  1. Minimally Invasive Procedures

The MRI-guided focused ultrasound surgery is a very new technique, and not many doctors master it. However, you will find many healthcare facilities offering effective and well-known minimally invasive procedures, such as:

Uterine artery embolization – small particles are injected into the arteries supplying blood to the uterus. They cut off blood flow to the fibroids and they will shrink and die.

Radiofrequency ablation – this procedure requires laparoscopic surgery (a very small incision). The doctor will use a specialized device to insert several tiny needles into the fibroid. These needles will heat up the fibroid and destroy it.

Endometrial ablation – the doctor introduces a specialized instrument into the uterus which emits heat, microwave energy or electric current (at safe levels for the patient) to destroy the lining of the uterus. This procedure will effectively cancel any possibility of getting pregnant, thus it is recommended only in extreme cases.


Your Overall Health Affects Your Skin Health

Your skin is your first line of defense against the outside world, so taking care of it the right way can have a major impact on your overall health. In other words, your general well-being is strongly related to the good health of your skin.

Your skin’s appearance can offer important clues about your general health. In case you are not drinking enough water, this can show on your skin, which tends to look dryer. At the same time, excessive hand washing can cause your hands to look dehydrated. In order to treat or prevent this, you can use plenty of lotions, creams and other especially designed solutions for your specific situation.

While red rashes which cause itching can indicate the presence of various allergies, dark or uncommon types of moles can be signs of cancer. A so-called “butterfly” rash on your face could be a sign of lupus. At the same time, if your face has a yellowish tint, this may indicate that you have liver problems. In case you notice unusual signs on your skin, or if unexpected changes have appeared recently, the best thing to do is talk to your doctor about it.

The sun can do a lot of damage to one’s skin, as the UV rays can cause it to get wrinkled or even more problems. For those who are sensitive to UV rays, but not only, it is very much recommended that they use hats, special protective clothing, sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) higher than 30 and to avoid spending too much time when the sun is hot, namely in the middle of the day or early afternoon.

The skin’s microbiome, or the bacteria that live on our skin, has been largely studied by researchers. While some of them can be beneficial, others may do harm to our skin and overall health. Their main purpose seems to be that of boosting one’s immune system, helping your body fight diseases and keep dangers at a distance. Experts intend to find out methods to help the beneficial microbes while also reducing the dangerous ones.

dermatologist Castle Rock

Diet can play a huge role in the good health of your skin. Top dermatologist Castle Rock clinicians confirm that a  healthy, balanced diet not only ensures a better-looking skin, but it can also help prevent major diseases such as skin cancer (carcinoma or melanoma).

Drinking enough water is the first rule of a proper diet. By doing that you are providing your skin and your entire body with the necessary supplies of water which are typically lost while sweating or during other kinds of natural processes.

A good diet can also prevent blemishes. In other words, acne can be avoided by saying no to high-fat foods or sugary products – by keeping yourself healthy.

Omega-3 fatty acids are essential ingredients for a healthy, beautiful skin. That is because these substances help increase the production of collagen, which prevents wrinkles and not only. These fatty acids should be in your diet on a regular basis. They can be found in fish, olive oil, nuts, and so on.

Type of Patients Who Benefit from Hormone Replacement Therapy

Hormone replacement therapy has been successfully used to treat menopausal symptoms for years. Then, controversies concerning its link to breast and ovarian cancer made doctors stop prescribing HRT to patients. But that did not last very long, because further studies indicated that hormone replacement therapy is safe under strict medical monitoring.

And, as researchers discovered more benefits for other patient groups, HRT is now used to treat more health issues than simply the negative effects of the onset of menopause.

How Do Doctors Administer Hormone Replacement Therapy?

HRT Highlands Ranch specialists confirm that there are many ways of receiving HRT, depending on the symptoms, type of treatment and duration. Hormone replacement therapy drugs come in many forms, from pills to injections and even dermal patches.

The purpose of these treatments is to restore the normal level of female and male hormones. These are:

  • Estrogen and progesterone in women
  • Testosterone in men.

HRT Highlands Ranch specialist

Is HRT Recommended for Other Patients Except for Women?

The answer is yes, and this is exactly what we will discuss in this article. Hormone therapy is beneficial to other patient groups and helps them live a normal live. They can relieve the symptoms that decrease their quality of life and affect them both physically and at a psychological level.

Here is a breakdown of what kind of people might need HRT:

  1. Perimenopausal and Menopausal Women

Perimenopause is the period while the female body prepares for the onset of menopause. While for some women this is a smooth and natural transition, many experience negative symptoms, such as mood swings and vasomotor symptoms.

The vasomotor symptoms are hot flushes, night sweats and vaginal dryness, and they can vary in intensity from mild to severe. All these problems can be successfully treated with hormone replacement therapy after a complete evaluation and following a personalized course of treatment.

Doctors note that this type of treatment is even more successful if it begins at the very onset of perimenopause and continues for around 3-4 years, until the transition to post-menopause is completed.

  1. Older Men

Hormone replacement therapy with testosterone can help men over 70 improve their quality of life in several ways. HRT prevents muscle loss – a frequent issue for males at this age.

At the same time, physicians noted good results in using hormone replacement therapy for other health issue related to aging, such as:

  • Metabolic syndrome
  • Osteoporosis
  • Decreased sex drive
  • Increasing body fat.

In younger men, HRT is generally used to treat hypogonadism, a condition that causes the body to produce low levels of testosterones. Hypogonadism can cause reduced fertility and feminization (lack or facial hair, breast enlargement, etc.)

  1. People Undergoing Gender Reassigning Treatment

Gender dysphoria is a condition in which the person has a different gender identity from their physical sex organs. In most cases, patients opt for gender reassignment surgery complemented by hormone replacement therapy.

In this case, HRT is used to give the person features corresponding to their chosen gender, such as the disappearance of facial hair for transgender women.

How Is Sleep Apnea Treated and Managed Most Efficiently?

Sleep apnea, along with the risks it involves, can be hard to treat completely and make it go away. However, there are methods to treat and manage the disorder, and oftentimes the side effects and risks that come with sleep apnea will disappear with proper treatment and with the management of problems that would naturally increase the risk of the various complications the disorder involves, such as possible stroke or the development of diabetes.

Treatment methods for sleep apnea can vary greatly, from the use of a CPAP machine to surgery. Below we will take a look at some of the most efficient methods that sleep specialist professionals and patients alike have agreed might offer ideal results in the case of most people suffering from sleep apnea.

The Use and Benefits of A CPAP Machine

A CPAP (continuous positive air pressure) machine can be ideal in managing some forms of sleep apnea. While studies often present conflicting evidence as to the machine’s effectiveness in reducing the risk of cardiovascular events, CPAP machines are known to alleviate the symptoms and problems caused by sleep apnea to a great extent.

sleep specialist will treat sleep apnea

These machines involve the use of continuous air pressure to keep the airways open and help with the breathing process. People suffering from sleep apnea often say that the use of this device has helped them considerably, and that they were actually able to get a good night’s sleep with its help.

Depending on the type of sleep apnea you have, the use of a CPAP machine might be more or less effective. However, some patients have also complained that using more affordable CPAP machines has led them to experience feelings of being trapped and constricted, as well as sore lips and gums, or various forms of skin irritation, after using them.

Yoga, Weight Loss and Lifestyle Changes

Lifestyle changes involving taking up healthy habits such as regular exercise and dieting, as well as yoga and various other forms of oriental practices involving a combination of harmonious physical movement and breathing techniques has also been known to help with sleep apnea in some cases. Although the holistic approach might not always be able to target sleep apnea directly, losing weight as a result of healthy practices has been found to reduce airway obstruction, prevent the onset of sleep apnea episodes during the night, and greatly diminish the risk of having a stroke or a heart attack during sleep.

Surgical Procedures

Finally, it’s also possible to use various forms of surgery and methods such as neurostimulation of the diaphragm and nasal EPAP to help manage the problems caused by sleep apnea both in the short and long term.

Sleep surgery is typically used in the case of people who can’t be helped using any of the previously mentioned techniques and methods. In order for the surgery to be a success, it is very important that the proper diagnosis be made regarding all the anatomical areas of obstruction, and that the surgical procedure be specifically adapted to each individual patient in part.

Wisdom Tooth Extraction – What You Need to Know

what you need to know about wisdom tooth extraction

Wisdom teeth usually erupt between the age of 17 and 25 – hence the name, that period in our life is called the age of wisdom. Most people have four wisdom teeth, one at each end of the lower and the upper rows, but not everyone has them, what’s more, some people don’t get any wisdom teeth at all. However, the major problem with wisdom tooth is not when someone does not have them at all, but when they do develop to a certain extent, but their development or their direction of growth is hindered by external factors.

Why Do Wisdom Teeth Get So Many Problems

Because we do not use them. Our ancestors used their wisdom teeth to grind their food, but the changes in our staple diet have deprived wisdom teeth of their role in food chewing and have transferred that role to the other teeth in the row. The process has also led to a decrease in the size of our jaw and an increase in the size of the other teeth in each row, leaving less space for wisdom teeth to grow. As a result, wisdom teeth struggle to erupt and to grow and they usually develop in the wrong direction, becoming more prone to all sorts of dental problems, including cavities, infections and impaction.

How Are Wisdom Teeth Problems Treated

Wisdom teeth can be treated with fillings and root canal procedures, just like any other tooth, but is the common way to solve wisdom tooth extraction Highland Park area. The problems that require extraction are usually diagnosed by general dentists during routine visits, but the extraction itself usually exceeds the competence of dentists and is usually performed by oral surgeons.

When a patient is referred to an oral surgeon, the surgical specialist will inspect the tooth, then will request an X-ray to see any infection in the deeper layers of the tooth and to be able to follow the exact direction of the root. The extraction is usually performed under local anesthesia, though in some cases, when the tooth is very large or very severely affected, the doctor might recommend general anesthesia. During the extraction, the doctor will use specialized tools to loosen and to remove the tooth or, if the tooth has not erupted, the doctor will make a small incision on the gum to get to the tooth, followed by the actual removal of the tooth. The intervention ends with the closing of the wound, either by dressing the wound or with stitches.

Patients need to be prepared that the wound left after the removal of a wisdom tooth is usually larger and deeper than the gaps left after the removal of other tooth, therefore the extraction site needs to be taken more care of and will probably take longer to heal, too. The final phase of the wisdom teeth removal process is the instruction regarding the wound care – before the patient leaves the doctor’s office, the doctor will provide detailed instructions about what the patient can eat, how cleaning needs to be performed as well as about the activities to avoid during the healing process.

Common Causes of Gum Disease

Those who suffered from it know how bad gum disease is: puffy, swollen and painful gums, occasional bleeding during tooth brushing…However, many people ignore the first signs of it and only start worrying when pain is constant and their teeth start moving. By that time, they may risk losing one or several teeth.

At the same time, there are lots of misconceptions concerning gum disease, as well as unproven cures and treatments for it. The truth is that if herbal teas and essential oil were effective, most dentists would be out of business. This does not mean that proper mouth hygiene can help prevent or mitigate the effects of gum disease. But the final word belongs to the dentists.

So, Is Gum Disease Preventable?

The answer is yes and no. Opting for a healthy diet and brushing, flossing and using mouthwash every day will help a lot. But sometimes, even the most careful person can develop gum disease.

To help understand why it is so, we prepared a list of common causes of gum disease:

  1. Plaque Buildup

Plaque represents the accumulation of food residues in difficult areas around the teeth. It is mainly caused by lack of flossing and using mouthwash after brushing the teeth. As  plaque accumulates, it can attack sensitive and weakened areas of the gums (especially in case of overly vigorous tooth brushing).

dentist Littleton CO

This is why frequent teeth cleaning by the best dental practice is necessary. The over the counter teeth whitening kits do not remove plaque effectively and completely. You need a professional teeth cleaning with specialized devices and substances.

  1. Hormonal Changes

Gum disease can be triggered by hormonal changes women experience during the period and in pregnancy. This is why dental care is an extremely sensitive issue for pregnant women.

Many women experience puffy and red gums during pregnancy. It does not always mean that they suffer from gum disease. However, it is better to be safe than sorry. Check with your dentist regularly.

  1. Smoking or Chewing Tobacco

Tobacco is one of the most detrimental effects to health. We will not refer to the long list of life threatening conditions that are directly linked to tobacco. For the purposes of this article, we will only say that frequent tobacco use can cause gum disease.

At the same time, tobacco stains the teeth, giving them an unappealing and unhealthy yellow aspect.

  1. Unhealthy Diet

Lots of sugars and not enough vitamin C and liquids are bad for your teeth and gums. Sugar attacks the enamel of the teeth and causes cavities. And lack of vitamin C makes the gums frail and prone to disease.

  1. Prescription Medication

Some drugs prescribed for preexisting conditions cause your mouth to feel dry due to reduced production of saliva. This is not only inconvenient, but also dangerous for your health. Dry gums are more vulnerable to bacteria and gum disease.

  1. Genetic Inheritance

In some cases, gum disease is passed from parents to children. It is not fully clear how it happens, and what gene is responsible for this. If you know several family members with gum disease, you should take extra care to prevent its onset.

Where and How Can You Buy CBD Products Safely?

The temptation is high. In many of the states where recreational and medical CBD is allowed by the law, the industry itself might be booming, but it’s not yet regulated. Even though there are a lot of online sellers boasting that their products are the best and safest out there, you’ll find that this isn’t entirely true. In fact, experts have tested some of these so-called CBD products and found the trace amounts of CBD are less than specified in certain brands, while others are even unsafe to use due to the present of harmful substances.

best dispensary near me for quality CBD

The Importance of Buying from the Right Brands

Now, don’t be scared. There are lots of great sources out there, like the best dispensary near me,  where you can buy high quality, high concentration CBD oil and other products that are entirely safe. However, for that you’ll have to do some research and have a little patience before you find the best distributors. Failing to do so can cost you dearly.

The most important reasons for finding the right brands include the following:

  1. You have to be sure that it’s a safe source. Some sellers are just out to get a quick buck, and they won’t care if their buyers get hurt in the process. So they may be willing to sell unsafe CBD products just to lower the cost of preparing them.
  2. While other sellers and manufacturers have a stronger moral code, they might sell products that are virtually useless in terms of the concentration of CBD they contain. This is especially problematic if you need CBD oil for treating a certain ailment that might require a specific dosage.
  3. It can be risky to use a formula that hasn’t been tested. Even with the best intentions coming from the manufacturer and distributor, their customers can still be at risk from new CBD formulas that haven’t been tested in a lab and might entail unknown side effects.

Look for Trustworthy Companies That Provide a COA

The good news is that regulated lab tests exist that can help determine a certain product’s CBD content as well as the presence of other ingredients and their dosages. The sellers who test their CBD products will receive a COA (Certificate of Analysis), which can basically tell you that the product was tested by an independent third party, and that it has passed the test. The result is that you can buy it with peace of mind that you’re getting the quality that you wanted.

A COA is accompanied by a pdf file that provides you with the result of the analysis and the full disclosure of the contents of your newly purchased CBD product. Using the unique batch number that is provided with the COA (since each product is tested in batches), and comparing the results of the tests performed on that particular batch with the claims of the seller, you can determine whether the dosage and refinement of the product is actually the one that’s advertised. You will then know whether or not the brand is safe and that you can purchase it without any real issue.