VITILIGO

OVERVIEW

Vitiligo is an acquired autoimmune disorder in which there is focal loss of melanocytes which are pigment producing cells in the skin and give tone to our skin. In case of vitiligo; melanocytes are targeted by the immune system of the body and are destroyed resulting in loss of pigment from the area.

Risk factors

  • Family history of vitiligo
  • Family history of autoimmune disorders such as diabetes, thyroid, adrenal disorders etc.
  • Associated autoimmune disorders such as diabetes, thyroid, adrenal disorders etc.
  • Trauma and sunburn

TYPES OF VITILIGO

Vitiligo may be classified into localized vitiligo and generalized vitiligo.

Localized vitiligo may be further classified into:

  • FOCAL: in this type hypo-pigmented spots are confined to one or more area.
  • SEGMENTAL: in this type of vitiligo one or more areas of hypo-pigmentation is seen but spots are confined to one side of the body only. This type is usually seen in children.
  • MUCOSAL: in this type of vitiligo only mucous membrane is affected.

Generalized vitiligo can be classified further into:

  • ACROFACIAL: hypo-pigmentation seen on parts which are away from the centre of the body I.e. face, head, extremities etc.
  • UNIVERSAL: hypo pigmentation covering almost whole body.

Mixed type of vitiligo may also be seen in which various patterns can be seen together.

SYMPTOMS & CAUSES

SYMPTOMS

Hypo pigmented spots on the skin usually starting from the sun exposed areas. Sometimes graying of hair on the affected parts is seen along with graying of eyelashes.

Mucosal linings are also affected in few, causing depigmentation of the mucous membranes.

Itching may also be seen in few cases especially in active stage along with sensitivity on exposure to sun.

CAUSES:

Exact cause of vitiligo is not known but a few possibilities are:

  • Autoimmune cause: pigment producing cells ( melanocytes) are attacked by the immune cells of the body and are destroyed.
  • Stress: stress may also trigger vitiligo
  • Sunburn: excessive and prolonged exposure to sun can also trigger vitiligo.
  • Chemical exposure may also cause vitiligo
  • Family history of vitiligo increases the chances of inheritance of vitiligo
  • Injury: at the place of injury depigmentation may start with the healing process.
  • A hypothesis also states that depigmentation is seen along the pressure areas of the body I.e along the waist line.

DIAGNOSIS & TREATMENT

  • Presence of depigmented spots
  • Antinuclear antibody helps in determination of autoimmune disorder.
  • Thyroid profile for presence of thyroid disorder, thyroid peroxidase antibody for presence of autoimmune thyroid disease.

TREATMENT

  • Phototherapy: exposure to UVA or UVB light can help some individuals with the condition.
  • Homeopathic medicine

MANAGEMENT:

  • Educate the patient and family members about the disease.
  • Clarify the facts about vitiligo that :
  1. It is a non-contagious disorder and can’t spread by contact.
  2. It has no age, sex or ethnic discrimination.
  3. Vitiligo is photosensitive and patients should avoid exposure of skin to direct sunlight for prolonged period.
  • Dietary advices should also be given like:
  1. Cashew nuts aggravates vitiligo
  2. Food with vitamin c aggravates vitiligo

HOMEOPATHY AND VITILIGO

Homeopathy has great scope in treatment of vitiligo as after through case taking and evaluation of the case constitutional best suited medicine is given to the patient which can promptly help in re-pigmentation and can cause complete cure also.

There are various medicines like sulphur, arsenic album, tuberculinum, phosphorus, calcarea carb, psorinum etc which can cure vitiligo depending on the case and personality of the patient.

DO’S AND DON’TS

DO’S

  • Take healthy nutritious diet.
  • Cover the body while going out in sun.

DON’TS

  • Avoid exposure to sun.
  • Avoid sour food items.
  • Avoid cashew nuts.
  • Avoid scratching as it may help in spread of spots.

 

DIET FOR HYPERTENSION

By making certain changes in diet and adding certain food items can help you manage your BP.

  1. Potassium would help the kidneys to excrete more sodium. Sodium as everyone knows causes blood pressure rise so taking potassium would help lowering the blood pressure.
  2. Food items rich in potassium such as banana, lettuce, green leafy vegetables, arugula leaves should be taken.
  3. Canned food items are high in sodium as preservative so should be avoided.
  4. Along with canned food; processed and frozen food items should also be avoided.
  5. Flavonoids help in keeping blood pressure on a lower side. Berries are rich in flavonoids so should be added in diet. Berries like blueberries, strawberries and raspberries are rich in flavonoids.
  6. Beetroots are good in keeping blood pressure under control.
  7. Low fat dairy products should be taken which are good source of calcium but low in fat.
  8. Oatmeal is high in fiber, low in fat and sodium.
  9. Omega-3 fatty acids are helpful in lowering blood pressure. Fish and salmon are rich in omega-3 fatty acids.
  10. Seeds such as sunflower, pumpkin seeds are rich source of minerals like potassium, magnesium which are helpful in lowering blood pressure.
  11. Herbs (thyme, basil, cinnamon, rosemary) and garlic cause vasodilatation thus helping in maintaining low blood pressure.
  12. Replace your normal cooking oil with olive oil as it contains healthy fat.
  13. Pistachios are healthy way to lower blood pressure.
  14. Fruits should be incorporated in the diet especially pomegranate.
  15. Thus in all low sodium, low fat, healthy fats, vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, legumes, lean meat, poultry, fish and whole grains together can help keeping blood pressure under control.

DIET FOR POLYCYSTIC OVARIAN SYNDROME

  1. Insulin resistance is seen in many women with PCOS and thus food items high in refined carbohydrates, starchy, sugary foods would increase insulin resistance and would make weight loss much more difficult.
  2. High fibre diet should be taken which would slow down digestion and would help combat insulin resistance. Food items high in fibre are- broccoli, cauliflower, sprouts, lettuce, bell peppers, pumpkin, sweet potato, almonds and berries.
  3. Lean protein should be taken which are filling and would help in keeping weight under control. Tofu, chicken and fish are good source of proteins.
  4. Tomatoes, spinach, almonds, walnuts, olive oil, strawberries are useful anti-inflammatory food items.
  5. Processed food items and red meat are inflammatory and should not be taken.
  6. Avoid white bread, muffins, refined sugar, maida.
  7. Limit dairy products.
  8. Limit soy products.
  9. Red meat should also be avoided.
  10. Eat wholegrain food items instead of processed or refined food.
  11. Incorporate legumes in the diet.

POLYCYSTIC OVARIAN SYNDROME


OVERVIEW

Polycystic ovarian syndrome has emerged as a major issue affecting more than 10% of the female population between age of 12 to 45 years. It is called as a syndrome as it is a cluster of symptoms caused by hormonal imbalance in the female.

Patient usually presents with the issue with her menses/ periods or inability to conceive as the menstrual cycles are irregular and anovulatory which means there is no egg released by the ovaries for fertilization causing infertility. Normally ovaries produce female sex hormones which help in release of egg and maintain normal functions. But ovaries also produce small amounts of male hormones also known as androgens which go out of balance in PCOD. this imbalance would suppress ovulation, would produce acne and increase hair growth on face and body. This imbalance stop maturation of eggs and take form of cysts on the periphery of ovaries thus called as polycystic ovaries.

The main four features of PCOS are: no ovulation, irregular periods, acne and hirsutism. If the condition is not treated insulin resistant diabetes can occur with high cholesterol and weight gain.

RISK FACTORS

Family history of PCOS would increase the chances of having it as PCOD runs in family.

SYMPTOMS AND CAUSES

CAUSES

Exact cause is not known but the imbalance in the male female hormones produce all the symptoms by suppressing ovulation and forming cysts on the periphery of the ovaries.

SYMPTOMS

  1. Acne
  2. Due to androgens extra facial and body hair.
  3. Androgens also cause thinning of hair of scalp.
  4. Gain of weight which is rigid to get rid of.
  5. Irregular menstrual cycles
  6. Mood swings, depression, low feeling, irritability, sadness, bouts of anger etc.
  7. Difficulty in conceiving due to anovulatory cycles.

DIAGNOSIS AND TREATMENT
INVESTIGATIONS:

  1. Blood sugar- fasting and PP, insulin
  2. Thyroid profile
  3. Ultrasonography of abdomen
  4. Serum testosterone, luteinising hormone, FSH, estrogen.

Tests should be performed on the 3rd or 5th day of the periods.

TREATMENT

Treatment of PCOS include efforts to regularise menses, produce ovulation to restore fertility, maintain glucose levels in case insulin resistance is there, bring hormone balance to reduce acne, hirsutism and help in weight loss.

MANAGEMENT

  1. Take healthy and light diet.
  2. Do regular physical exercise.
  3. Take medication to bring hormonal balance.

HOMEOPATHIC MANAGEMENT OF PCOS

Homeopathic management of PCOS would include proper case taking in terms of full symptoms including the menstrual  history, mental symptoms and physical symptoms to choose best similar medicine for the patient.

The homeopathic medicine would help in bringing the hormones to normal levels thus helping in regularising menses, release of egg, get rid of infertility and all other symptoms of PCOD.

There are many medicines like sepia, pulsatilla, tuberculinum, sulphur, calcarea carb, graphites etc which can be given but only after proper case taking and analysis of the case.

DO’S AND DON’TS FOR PCOS

DO’S

 

  • Do regular physical exercise
  • Eat healthy and nutritious diet.
  • Maintain a menstrual calendar.

 

DON’TS

 

  • Don’t smoke
  • Don’t take alcohol.
  • Don’t eat unhealthy food.
  • Don’t follow unhealthy lifestyle.

 

 

12 TIPS TO MANAGE PCOS

PCOD/PCOS is a combination of symptoms produced by imbalance in the hormones (fall in female hormones and hike in male hormones) in the female. The imbalance of hormone causes irregularity in periods and sometimes even amenorrhoea (absence of menses). Further there is no release of egg (due to increase in levels of male hormone/ androgens) and cysts are formed on the periphery of the ovaries. Due to high male hormones there in thinning of hair of scalp and hairiness on other body parts.

In PCOS insulin resistance may also be seen which does not let insulin act in the body and cause increase in levels of glucose which may further stimulate the body to produce more insulin to combat high levels of glucose in the body. These high levels of insulin would cause ovaries to produce more androgens/ male hormone (testosterone). This would further exaggerate the symptoms in the female.

Few tips and dietary management with change in the lifestyle of the patient can help her fight with the symptoms of PCOS.

  1. Regular physical exercise is essential to get rid of rigid weight gain of PCOS.
  2. Being physically active would also help to fight with insulin resistance thus would help in management of symptoms of PCOS.
  3. Meditation and yoga would help the mind and body to relax as PCOS may cause stress. Thus meditation and yoga would help in keeping the physical and mental stress low.
  4. To fight with the insulin resistance high fibre diet should be taken as it is going to slow down the digestion and thus sugar levels would not rise suddenly. Food items like broccoli, cauliflower, sprouts, lettuce, arugula leaves, bell peppers, beans, berries, zucchini, almonds, sweet potato, pulses etc are rich in fibres and are good for the patient of PCOS.
  5. Another dietary change that one should do is to take light food which is filling and don’t give much calories such as tofu, chicken, fish etc
  6. Food items that have anti inflammatory properties (tomatoes, spinach, strawberries, blueberries, olive oil etc) would also help the patient of PCOS.
  7. Refined carbohydrates should be avoided as they are going to exaggerate the symptoms by aggravating the insulin resistance. Food items like white bread, muffins, potatoes, white flour etc should be avoided.
  8. Refined sugar should be avoided.
  9. Eat large breakfast and cut down your dinner to small amount.
  10. Low carbohydrate diet is advisable as it would help in losing weight and would manage the androgen levels also.
  11. Drink plenty of water.
  12. Keep the intake of dairy products low.