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Factitious disorder is a serious mental disorder in which someone deceives others by appearing sick, by purposely getting sick or by self-injury. Factitious disorder also can happen when family members or caregivers falsely present others, such as children, as being ill, injured or impaired.


Factitious disorder symptoms can range from mild (slight exaggeration of symptoms) to severe (previously called Munchausen syndrome). The person may make up symptoms or even tamper with medical tests to convince others that treatment, such as high-risk surgery, is needed.


Factitious disorder is not the same as inventing medical problems for practical benefit, such as getting out of work or winning a lawsuit. Although people with factitious disorder know they are causing their symptoms or illnesses, they may not understand the reasons for their behaviors or recognize themselves as having a problem.


Factitious disorder is challenging to identify and hard to treat. However, medical and psychiatric help are critical for preventing serious injury and even death caused by the self-harm typical of this disorder.

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Farsightedness (hyperopia) is a common vision condition in which you can see distant objects clearly, but objects nearby may be blurry.


The degree of your farsightedness influences your focusing ability. People with severe farsightedness may see clearly only objects a great distance away, while those with mild farsightedness may be able to clearly see objects that are closer.


Farsightedness usually is present at birth and tends to run in families. You can easily correct this condition with eyeglasses or contact lenses. Another treatment option is surgery.

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A febrile seizure is a convulsion in a child that may be caused by a spike in body temperature, often from an infection. Your child's having a febrile seizure can be alarming, and the few minutes it lasts can seem like an eternity.


Febrile seizures represent a unique response of a child's brain to fever, usually the first day of a fever. Fortunately, they're usually harmless and typically don't indicate an ongoing problem. You can help by keeping your child safe during a febrile seizure and by comforting him or her afterward.

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Fecal incontinence is the inability to control bowel movements, causing stool (feces) to leak unexpectedly from the rectum. Also called bowel incontinence, fecal incontinence ranges from an occasional leakage of stool while passing gas to a complete loss of bowel control.


Common causes of fecal incontinence include diarrhea, constipation, and muscle or nerve damage. The muscle or nerve damage may be associated with aging or with giving birth.


Whatever the cause, fecal incontinence can be embarrassing. But don't shy away from talking to your doctor. Treatments are available that can improve fecal incontinence and your quality of life.

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Infertility is defined as trying to get pregnant (with frequent intercourse) for at least a year with no success. Female infertility, male infertility or a combination of the two affects millions of couples in the United States. An estimated 10 to 18 percent of couples have trouble getting pregnant or having a successful delivery.


Infertility results from female factors about one-third of the time and male factors about one-third of the time. The cause is either unknown or a combination of male and female factors in the remaining cases.


Female infertility causes can be difficult to diagnose. There are many available treatments, which will depend on the cause of infertility. Many infertile couples will go on to conceive a child without treatment. After trying to get pregnant for two years, about 95 percent of couples successfully conceive.

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A sexual problem, or sexual dysfunction, refers to a problem during any phase of the sexual response cycle that prevents the individual or couple from experiencing satisfaction from the sexual activity. The sexual response cycle has four phases: excitement, plateau, orgasm, and resolution.


While research suggests that sexual dysfunction is common (43% of women and 31% of men report some degree of difficulty), it is a topic that many people are hesitant or embarrassed to discuss. Fortunately, most cases of sexual dysfunction are treatable, so it is important to share your concerns with your partner and doctor.

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The term "fetal macrosomia" is used to describe a newborn who's significantly larger than average.


A baby diagnosed with fetal macrosomia has a birth weight of more than 8 pounds, 13 ounces (4,000 grams), regardless of his or her gestational age. About 9 percent of babies born worldwide weigh more than 8 pounds, 13 ounces.


However, the risks associated with fetal macrosomia increase greatly when birth weight is more than 9 pounds 15 ounces (4,500 grams).


Fetal macrosomia may complicate vaginal delivery and could put the baby at risk of injury during birth. Fetal macrosomia also puts the baby at increased risk of health problems after birth.

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Fibroadenomas (fy-broe-ad-uh-NO-muhz) are solid, noncancerous breast lumps that occur most often in women between the ages of 15 and 35.


A fibroadenoma might feel firm, smooth, rubbery or hard and has a well-defined shape. Usually painless, it might feel like a marble in your breast, moving easily under your skin when examined. Fibroadenomas vary in size, and they can enlarge or shrink on their own.


Fibroadenomas are among the most common noncancerous (benign) breast lumps in young women. Treatment might include monitoring to detect changes in size or feel, a biopsy to evaluate the lump or surgery to remove it.

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Fibrocystic breasts are composed of tissue that feels lumpy or rope-like in texture. Doctors call this nodular or glandular breast tissue.


It's not at all uncommon to have fibrocystic breasts. More than half of women experience fibrocystic breast changes at some point in their lives. In fact, medical professionals have stopped using the term "fibrocystic breast disease" and now simply refer to "fibrocystic breasts" or "fibrocystic breast changes" because having fibrocystic breasts isn't really a disease. Breast changes categorized as fibrocystic are considered normal.


Although many women with fibrocystic breasts don't have symptoms, some women experience breast pain, tenderness and lumpiness — especially in the upper, outer area of the breasts. Breast symptoms tend to be most bothersome just before menstruation. Simple self-care measures can usually relieve discomfort associated with fibrocystic breasts.

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Fibromuscular dysplasia is a condition that causes narrowing (stenosis) and enlargement (aneurysm) of the medium-sized arteries in your body. Reduced blood flow from narrowed arteries to the organs can affect the function of the organs.


Fibromuscular dysplasia appears most commonly in the arteries leading to the kidneys. Fibromuscular dysplasia can also affect the arteries leading to your brain, heart, abdomen, arms and legs.


Fibromuscular dysplasia can cause a number of complications, such as high blood pressure or tears of the artery (arterial dissection), if left untreated. Arterial dissection, or spontaneous coronary artery dissection (SCAD), can limit blood flow to the organ supplied by the injured artery.

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Fibrous dysplasia is an uncommon bone disorder in which scar-like (fibrous) tissue develops in place of normal bone. This irregular tissue can weaken the affected bone and cause it to deform or fracture.


In most cases, fibrous dysplasia occurs at a single site in one bone, but can occur at multiple sites in multiple bones. Single bone involvement usually occurs in adolescents and young adults. People who have more than one affected bone typically develop symptoms before the age of 10.


Although fibrous dysplasia is a genetic disorder, it's caused by a gene mutation that's not passed from parent to child. There's no cure for the disorder. Treatment, which may include surgery, focuses on relieving pain and repairing or stabilizing bones.

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You have flatfeet when the arches on the inside of your feet are flattened, allowing the entire soles of your feet to touch the floor when you stand up.


A common and usually painless condition, flatfeet can occur when the arches don't develop during childhood. In other cases, flatfeet develop after an injury or from the simple wear-and-tear stresses of age.


Flatfeet can sometimes contribute to problems in your ankles and knees because the condition can alter the alignment of your legs. If you aren't having pain, no treatment is usually necessary for flatfeet.

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Folliculitis is an inflammatory condition affecting hair follicles. It appears as a small red tender bump occasionally surmounted with dot of pus surrounding a hair. Older lesions that have lost the pus appear as red bumps surrounding the opening of the follicle absent the hair. One to hundreds of follicles can be affected anywhere that hair is present. Actually, acne vulgaris, the facial rash that teenagers develop, is a type of folliculitis.


Depending on the cause and severity of folliculitis, it may require no treatment and resolve spontaneously, or it may require treatment with powerful antibiotics or other drugs.

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Foot drop, sometimes called "drop foot," is the inability to lift the front part of the foot. This causes the toes to drag along the ground while walking.


To avoid dragging the toes, people with foot drop may lift their knee higher than normal. Or they may swing their leg in a wide arc.


Foot drop can happen to one foot or both feet at the same time. It can strike at any age.


In general, foot drop stems from weakness or paralysis of the muscles that lift the foot. It can have many different causes. Treatments for foot drop vary according to the cause.



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Frostbite occurs when the skin is exposed to extreme or prolonged cold. The skin freezes, as do tissues beneath the surface of the skin. In extreme cases, muscle, nerves, and blood vessels may also freeze.


Skin may freeze within minutes when exposed to temperatures that fall below freezing. Even if temperatures are above freezing, the skin is likely to freeze if it’s wet or exposed to severe wind chills.


Frostbite also occurs when your skin directly contacts very cold surfaces. This type of exposure may immediately freeze the skin that touches the frozen surface.

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Frozen shoulder is the common name for adhesive capsulitis, which is a shoulder condition that limits your range of motion. When the tissues in your shoulder joint become thicker and tighter, scar tissue develops over time. As a result, your shoulder joint doesn’t have enough space to rotate properly. Common symptoms include swelling, pain, and stiffness. You’re more likely to have the condition if you’re between the ages of 40 and 60.

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The idea behind functional training is that each exercise should be more natural and carry over into daily life. Functional training exercises tend to activate more muscles and therefore consume more energy. These multidimensional exercises also tend to improve your natural movement skills and enhance your general mobility.See how many of the below functional training exercises you can incorporate into your workouts for a more practical and fat burning workout.


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At the foundation of fusion yoga is a community of people coming together to practice yoga as a way to be free of pain, to think more clearly, and to have a better relationship with the world.  Fusion yoga is a supporting, exciting, and empowering experience for yoga practitioners of every level. Whether you're new or highly experienced, you'll find a class offering that meets your needs.  Our yoga classes are meant to challenge you mentally and physically.  All classes ask you to look within- to tap into your own innate needs, potential and expression as you cultivate your own experience.


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A fistulogram is a special x-ray procedure. It uses a form of real-time x-ray called fluoroscopy and a barium-based contrast material to produce images of an abnormal passage within the body called a fistula. It looks at the blood flow in your fistula or graft (dialysis access). This procedure can check to see if it is blocked or if there is any narrowing (stenosis).

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Fluoroscopy is a study of moving body structures. It’s much like an X-ray "movie" and is often done while a contrast dye moves through the part of the body being examined. A continuous X-ray beam is passed through the body part and sent to a video monitor so that the body part and its motion can be seen in detail. Fluoroscopy, as an imaging tool, allows healthcare providers to look at many body systems, including the skeletal, digestive, urinary, cardiovascular, respiratory, and reproductive systems.


Fluoroscopy may be used to evaluate specific areas of the body. These include the bones, bowel, muscles, heart vessels, and joints.

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All women have the occasional "straggler", that hair or patch of hairs that grows in the worst possible place!

You know what I'm talking about--those extra hairs on your chin, along your jawline, above your lip, or on your sideburns.

Those hairs can be a pain in the butt to get rid of.

Every time you think you've dealt with the hair, you discover another growing somewhere else.

Worse still, even after you get rid of the hairs, they just grow back--sometimes thicker, stronger, and more visible!

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Fatigue can be described as the lack of energy and motivation (both physical and mental). This is different than drowsiness, a term that describes the need to sleep. Often a person complains of feeling tired and it is up to the health care professional to distinguish between fatigue and drowsiness, though both can occur at the same time. Aside from drowsiness, other symptoms can be confused with fatigue including shortness of breath with activity and muscle weakness. Again, all these symptoms can occur at the same time. Also, fatigue can be a normal response to physical and mental activity; in most normal individuals it is quickly relieved (usually in hours to about a day, depending on the intensity of the activity) by reducing the activity.

Fatigue is a very common complaint and it is important to remember that it is a symptom and not a disease. Many illnesses can result in the complaint of fatigue and they can be physical, psychological, or a combination of the two.

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 Some fat in your liver is normal. But if it makes up more than 5%-10% of the organ's weight, you may have fatty liver disease. If you're a drinker, stop. That's one of the key causes of the condition.

There are two main types of fatty liver disease:-

Alcoholic liver disease (ALD)
Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)

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Although a fever technically is any body temperature above the normal of 98.6 F (37 C), in practice a person is usually not considered to have a significant fever until the temperature is above 100.4 F (38 C).

Fever is part of the body's own disease-fighting arsenal: rising body temperatures apparently are capable of killing off many disease- producing organisms. For that reason, low fevers should normally go untreated, although you may need to see your doctor to be sure if the fever is accompanied by any other troubling symptoms. As fevers range to 104 F and above, however, there can be unwanted consequences, particularly for children. These can include delirium and convulsions. A fever of this sort demands immediate home treatment and then medical attention. Home treatment possibilities include the use of aspirin or, in children, non-aspirin pain-killers such as acetaminophen, cool baths, or sponging to reduce the fever while seeking medical help. Fever may occur with almost any type of infection of illness. The temperature is measured with a thermometer.

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A small sore situated on the face or in the mouth that causes pain, burning, or itching before bursting and crusting over. The favorite locations are on the lips, chin or cheeks and in the nostrils. Less frequented sites are the gums or roof of the mouth (the palate).

Fever blisters are caused by herpes simplex virus type 1. It lies latent (dormant) in the body and is reawakened (reactivated) by factors such as stress, sunburn, or fever from a wide range of infectious diseases including colds. Recurrences are less common after age 35. Sunscreen (SPF 15 or more) on the lips prevents recurrences of herpes from sunburn.

The virus is highly contagious when fever blisters are present. It is spread by kissing. Children become infected by contact with someone who has a fever blister and then they spread the virus by rubbing their cold sore and touching other children. A person with fever blisters should be careful not to touch the blisters and spread the virus to new sites, such as the eyes or genitals.

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Fibroids are the most frequently seen tumors of the female reproductive system. Fibroids, also known as uterine myomas, leiomyomas, or fibromas, are firm, compact tumors that are made of smooth muscle cells and fibrous connective tissue that develop in the uterus. It is estimated that between 20 to 50 percent of women of reproductive age have fibroids, although not all are diagnosed. Some estimates state that up to 30 to 77 percent of women will develop fibroids sometime during their childbearing years, although only about one-third of these fibroids are large enough to be detected by a health care provider during a physical examination.

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Fibromyalgia: A disease characterized by chronic pain, stiffness, and tenderness of muscles, tendons, and joints, without detectable inflammation. Fibromyalgia does not cause body damage or deformity. However, undue fatigue plagues 90 percent of patients with fibromyalgia. Sleep disorder is also common in patients with fibromyalgia. Fibromyalgia can be associated with other rheumatic conditions, and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) can occur with fibromyalgia. There is no definitive medical test for the diagnosis of fibromyalgia, so diagnosis is made by eliminating other possible causes of the symptoms. The most effective treatment is a combination of education, stress reduction, exercise, and medication. Formerly known as fibrositis.


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A blister is a small pocket of body fluid (lymph, serum, plasma, blood, or pus) within the upper layers of the skin, typically caused by forceful rubbing (friction), burning, freezing, chemical exposure or infection. Most blisters are filled with a clear fluid, either serum or plasma.[1] However, blisters can be filled with blood (known as "blood blisters") or with pus (if they become infected).

The word "blister" entered English in the 14th century. It came from the Middle Dutch "bluyster" and was a modification of the Old French "blostre", which meant a leprous nodule—a rise in the skin due to leprosy. In dermatology today, the words vesicle and bulla refer to blisters of smaller or greater size, respectively.

To heal properly, a blister should not be popped unless medically necessary. If popped, the excess skin should not be removed because the skin underneath needs that top layer to heal properly.

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Reflexology, also known as zone therapy, is an alternative medicine involving application of pressure to the feet and hands with specific thumb, finger, and hand techniques without the use of oil or lotion. It is based on a pseudoscientific[1] system of zones and reflex areas that purportedly reflect an image of the body on the feet and hands, with the premise that such work effects a physical change to the body.


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There's a whiff of something in the air that's distinctly... foot. The Is that me?! panic sets in. Many of us have been in your, ahem, shoes. The odd case of bromodosis—yep, foot odor even has its own very official name—is usually nothing to worry about. Here are a few possible reasons your tootsies stink to high heaven and what to do about the stench.

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Tendinitis is inflammation or irritation of a tendon — any one of the thick fibrous cords that attaches muscle to bone. The condition causes pain and tenderness just outside a joint. While tendinitis can occur in any of your body's tendons, it's most common around your shoulders, elbows, wrists, knees and heels

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Coagulation factors are proteins circulating in the blood that are essential for proper blood clot formation. Coagulation factor tests measure the function of or sometimes the amount of these proteins in the blood.


Blood clotting is a complex process that involves numerous coagulation factors, which are produced by the liver and blood vessels. Each coagulation factor is evaluated with one or more tests. When factor levels are low, it can cause blood clotting to fail, leading to unexplained bleeding episodes. Measuring coagulation factors can help a healthcare practitioner determine the cause of the bleeding and the best treatment.


Coagulation factors are usually tested by measuring the factor's activity level in the blood. Activity assays can detect reduced levels of protein or proteins that don't function properly. Rarely, the amount (antigen level) of a coagulation factor may also be measured. Coagulation factor antigen tests can tell how much of the protein is present, but not whether its function is normal.


When someone bleeds (e.g., with an injury), the coagulation system is activated, plugging the leaking blood vessel with a clot. The coagulation system consists of a series of coagulation factors that activate in a step-by-step process called the coagulation cascade. The end result is the formation of insoluble fibrin threads that link together at the site of injury, along with aggregated cell fragments called platelets, to form a stable blood clot. The clot prevents additional blood loss and remains in place until the injured area has healed.


Blood clotting is dynamic; once a clot is formed, other factors are activated that slow clotting or dissolve the clot in a process called fibrinolysis. The clot is eventually removed after the injury site heals. In normal healthy individuals, this balance between clot formation and removal ensures that bleeding does not become excessive and that clots are removed once they are no longer needed.


For people with bleeding disorders, clotting does not work properly because they lack platelets or coagulation factors, or their platelets or factors don't work properly. There are a variety of bleeding disorders that may be passed through families (inherited) or acquired after birth. If a person has signs and symptoms of one of these disorders, coagulation factor testing may be ordered to help determine the diagnosis and treatment.


There are nine coagulation factor proteins that can be measured clinically (see table below). These factors are referred to by a name or Roman numeral or both in some cases. For example, coagulation factor II is also known as prothrombin. When one or more of these factors are produced in too small a quantity, or are not functioning correctly, they can cause excessive bleeding.

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Fibrin degradation products (FDP) are substances that remain in your bloodstream after your body dissolves a blood clot. Your fibrinolytic (clot-busting) system manages and regulates clot dissolving.


When you cut yourself, the injured blood vessel constricts to stop bleeding and promote healing. This process is called hemostasis. Platelets in your blood gather together and stick to the injury site to form a plug or clot. The formation of the plug or clot is called the clotting cascade.


Fibrin is a protein that aids in clotting. Clotting, also called coagulation, at the wound site produces a mass of fibrin threads called a net. The net remains in place until the cut is healed. As the cut heals, the clotting slows down. Eventually the clot breaks down and dissolves.


When the clot and fibrin net dissolve, fragments of protein are released into the body. These fragments are fibrin degradation products (FDPs). If your body is unable to dissolve a clot, you may have abnormal levels of FDPs.


Blood tests can measure your level of FDPs to see if you have a clotting disorder. The fibrin degradation products test is a specific test that determines the amount of FDPs in your blood. The test is also known as the fibrin split products (FSPs) test, or the fibrin breakdown products test.

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Ferritin is an iron-containing protein and is the primary form of iron stored inside of cells. The small quantity of ferritin that is released into the blood is a reflection of the amount of total iron stored in the body. This test measures the amount of ferritin in the blood.


In healthy people, about 70% of the iron absorbed by the body is incorporated into the hemoglobin of red blood cells. Most of the remaining 30% is stored as ferritin or as hemosiderin, a complex of iron, proteins, and other materials. Ferritin and hemosiderin are present primarily in the liver but also in the bone marrow, spleen, and skeletal muscles.


When available iron is insufficient to meet the body's needs, iron stores are depleted and ferritin levels decrease. This may occur because of insufficient iron intake, inadequate absorption, or increased need for iron such as during pregnancy or due to a condition that causes chronic blood loss. Significant depletion of iron stores may occur before any signs of iron deficiency develop.


Iron storage and ferritin levels increase when more iron is absorbed than the body needs. Chronic absorption of excess iron will lead to the progressive buildup of iron compounds in organs and may eventually cause their dysfunction and failure. This happens in hemochromatosis, a genetic disease in which the body absorbs too much iron, even on a normal diet.

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A fetal hemoglobin test is a blood test that checks the amount of fetal hemoglobin (Hb F) in the blood. Fetal hemoglobin is one of many types of hemoglobin. It is present in high levels in fetuses, but usually drops to trace amounts about six months after birth. If Hb F is at higher than normal levels, it can mean you have thalassemia, myeloid leukemia, or sickle cell anemia.

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Fibrinogen is a protein, a coagulation factor (factor I) that is essential for blood clot formation. Two types of tests are available to evaluate fibrinogen: a fibrinogen activity test evaluates how well fibrinogen functions in helping to form a blood clot while a fibrinogen antigen test measures the amount of fibrinogen in the blood.


Fibrinogen is produced by the liver and released into circulation along with several other coagulation factor proteins. Normally, when a body tissue or blood vessel wall is injured, a process called hemostasis begins to help stop the bleeding by forming a plug at the injury site. Small cell fragments called platelets adhere to and aggregate at the site, a coagulation cascade begins, and clotting factors are activated one after the other.


As the cascade nears completion, soluble fibrinogen is converted into insoluble fibrin threads. These threads crosslink together to form a fibrin net that stabilizes at the injury site. The fibrin net adheres to the site of injury along with the platelets to form a stable blood clot. This barrier prevents additional blood loss and remains in place until the injured area has healed.


For a stable clot to form there must be enough normally functioning platelets and coagulation factors. If there are dysfunctional factors or platelets, or too little or too much of them, it can lead to bleeding episodes and/or to formation of an in appropriate blood clot (thrombosis). Several laboratory tests, including fibrinogen tests, can be used to evaluate hemostasis.

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Lymphatic filariasis (LF) is a parasitic disease caused by nematodes (Wuchereria bancrofti, Brugia malayi and Brugia timori) whose preferred habitats are the lymphatic vessels and lymph nodes which induce the development of disfiguring and debilitating clinical symptoms. The infection, which is transmitted by various genera of mosquitoes (Sasa 1976), is considered to be one of the health problems of greatest social and economic impact in endemic areas (Ottesen et al. 1997).


Until the 1980s, the only direct way to confirm a diagnosis of infection by W. bancrofti was via the identification of microfilariae (MF) in peripheral blood using camera counting, polycarbonate membrane filtration, the thick smear method or Knott's technique (Knott 1939, Denham et al. 1971, Dennis & Kaen 1971, Eberhard & Lammie 1991). Apart from the low sensitivities of these methods arising from the fact that they only identify filarial infection by way of microfilaremia, they are also inconvenient in terms of the time of day the blood must be collected, namely when the MF are at a peak in peripheral blood, a parameter that varies from one endemic area to another. In Brazil, the peak for microfilaremia occurs between 11 pm-1 am (Dreyer et al. 1996).


In the 1990s, significant advances were made in the diagnosis of LF with the emergence of new diagnostic tools: (i) use of recombinant antigens to detect specific antibodies (Chandrasherkar et al. 1994); (ii) a PCR for the detection of filarial DNA (Zhong et al. 1996, Rocha et al. 2002); (iii) the visualisation of live adult worms (AW) using ultrasound (US) and (iv) circulating filarial antigen (CFA) detection (More & Copeman 1990, Weil et al. 1997). At present, the standard diagnostic tools are US (Amaral et al. 1994) and CFA detection, with the latter using the monoclonal antibodies (McAbs) Og4C3 and AD12. The CFA detection techniques are commercially available in the form of kits and have the advantage of allowing for diagnosis to be carried out using blood samples collected at any time of day (More & Copeman 1990, Amaral et al. 1994, Weil et al. 1997, Rocha 2002, 2004)

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For a palpable breast lump, a fine needle is inserted through the skin and directed towards the suspicious area. When this needle reaches the mass, the doctor suctions out a sample with the help of syringe, which is then sent to the laboratory for further analysis.

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The fluorescent treponemal antibody absorption (FTA-ABS) test is a blood test that checks for the presence of antibodies to Treponema pallidum bacteria. These bacteria cause syphilis.


Syphilis s a sexually transmitted infection (STI) that’s spread through direct contact with syphilitic sores. Sores are most often present on the penis, vagina, or rectum. These sores aren’t always noticeable. You may not even know that you’re infected.


The FTA-ABS test doesn’t actually check for the syphilis infection itself. However, it can determine whether you have antibodies to the bacteria that cause it. Antibodies are special proteins produced by the immune system when harmful substances are detected. These harmful substances, known as antigens, include viruses, fungi, and bacteria. This means that people who are infected with syphilis will have the corresponding antibodies.

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Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin) and Folic Acid (Folate) both play key roles in DNA synthesis and creating red blood cells. This test is used to measure vitamin B12 and folic acid levels.


Deficiencies in vitamin B12 can lead to nerve damage and specific cases of anemia in which red blood cells are larger than average and the level of hemoglobin in the blood are deficient, called macrocyotic anemia. Deficiencies in folate can cause neural tube defects to occur to a fetus during pregnancy.


Malnutrition or conditions that can cause an individual to have poor absorption of nutrients like celiac disease, Crohn's disease, alcoholism or intestinal or gastrointestinal disorders may have low levels of B12 and folic acid.

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Freckles, sometimes called ephelides (singular ephelis), are clusters of concentrated melaninized cells which are most easily visible on people with a fair complexion. Freckles do not have an increased number of the melanin-producing cells, or melanocytes, but instead have melanocytes that overproduce melanin granules (melanosomes) changing the coloration of the outer skin cells (keratinocytes). As such, freckles are different from lentigines and moles


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Prostate specific antigen (PSA) is a protein produced primarily by cells in the prostate, a small gland that encircles the urethra in males and produces a fluid that makes up part of semen. Most of the PSA that the prostate produces is released into this fluid, but small amounts of it are also released into the bloodstream. This test measures the amount of PSA in the blood.


The PSA test is used as a tumor marker to screen for and to monitor prostate cancer. It is a good tool but not a perfect one, and most experts agree that screening should be done on asymptomatic men only after thorough discussions with their healthcare providers on the benefits and risks and after informed decisions are made to undergo screening. Elevated levels of PSA are associated with prostate cancer, but they may also be seen with prostatitis and benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). PSA levels tend to increase in all men as they age, and men of African American heritage may have levels that are higher than other men, even at earlier ages.


PSA is not diagnostic of cancer. The gold standard for identifying prostate cancer is the prostate biopsy, collecting small samples of prostate tissue and identifying abnormal cells under the microscope. (Read the article on Anatomic Pathology for more information on biopsies.) The total PSA test and digital rectal exam (DRE) are used together to help determine the need for a prostate biopsy.


The goal of screening is to detect prostate cancer while it is still confined to the prostate. Once the presence of prostate cancer is confirmed by biopsy, another decision must be made with regard to treatment. Prostate cancer is relatively common in men as they age and many, if not most, of the tumors are very slow-growing. While prostate cancer is the number two cause of death in men, the slow-growing type is an uncommon cause of death. A pathologist may be able to help differentiate between slow-growing cases and cancers that are likely to grow aggressively and spread to other parts of the body (metastasize).

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Triiodothyronine (T3) is one of two major hormones produced by the thyroid gland, a small butterfly-shaped organ that lies flat across the windpipe at the base of the throat. The other major thyroid hormone is called thyroxine (T4) and together they help control the rate at which the body uses energy. Almost all of the T3 (and T4) found in the blood is bound to protein. The rest is free (unbound) and is the biologically active form of the hormone. Tests can measure the amount of free T3 or the total T3 (bound plus unbound) in the blood.


T3 and T4 production is regulated by a feedback system. When blood levels of thyroid hormones decline, the hypothalamus releases thyrotropin releasing hormone, which stimulates the pituitary gland to produce and release thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH). TSH then stimulates the thyroid gland to produce and/or release more thyroid hormones. Most of the thyroid hormone produced is T4. This hormone is relatively inactive, but it is converted into the much more active T3 in the liver and other tissues.


If the thyroid gland produces excessive amounts of T4 and T3, then the person affected may have symptoms associated with hyperthyroidism, such as nervousness, tremors of the hands, weight loss, insomnia, and puffiness around dry, irritated eyes. In some cases, the person's eyes cannot move normally and they may appear to be staring. In other cases, the eyes may appear to bulge.


If the thyroid gland produces insufficient amounts of thyroid hormones, then the person may have signs and symptoms associated with hypothyroidism and a slowed metabolism, such as weight gain, dry skin, fatigue, and constipation. The blood levels of thyroid hormones may be low or high due to thyroid dysfunction or rarely due to insufficient or excessive TSH production related to a pituitary disorder.


The most common causes of thyroid dysfunction are related to autoimmune disorders. Graves disease causes hyperthyroidism, but it can also be caused by thyroiditis, thyroid cancer, and excessive production of TSH. The effect of these conditions on thyroid hormone production can be detected and monitored by measuring the free T3 or sometimes total T3.

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Thyroxine (T4) is one of two major hormones produced by the thyroid gland, a small butterfly-shaped organ that lies flat across the windpipe at the base of the throat. The other major thyroid hormone is called triiodothyronine (T3) and together they help control the rate at which the body uses energy. Almost all of the T4 (and T3) found in the blood is bound to protein. The rest is free (unbound) and is the biologically active form of the hormone. This test measures the amount of free T4 in the blood.


T4 production is regulated by a feedback system. When the level of T4 in the bloodstream decreases, the hypothalamus releases thyrotropin releasing hormone, which stimulates the pituitary gland to produce and release thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH). TSH then stimulates the thyroid gland to make and/or release more T4. As the blood concentration of T4 increases, TSH release is inhibited.


T4 makes up about 90% of thyroid hormones. When the body requires thyroid hormone, the thyroid gland releases stored T4 into circulation. In the blood, T4 is either free (not bound) or bound to protein (primarily bound to thyroxine-binding globulin). The concentration of free T4 is only about 0.1% of that of total T4. T4 is converted into T3 in the liver or other tissues. T3, like T4, is also mostly bound to protein, but it is the free forms of T3 and T4 that are biologically active. Free T3 is 4 to 5 times more active than free T4 in circulation.


If the thyroid gland does not produce sufficient T4, due to thyroid dysfunction or to insufficient TSH, then the affected person experiences symptoms of hypothyroidism such as weight gain, dry skin, cold intolerance, irregular menstruation, and fatigue. Severe untreated hypothyroidism, called myxedema, can lead to heart failure, seizures, and coma. In children, hypothyroidism can stunt growth and delay sexual development.

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Testosterone is the main sex hormone (androgen) in men. It is responsible for male physical characteristics. Although it is considered to be a "male" sex hormone, it is present in the blood of both men and women. This test measures the level of testosterone in the blood.


Testosterone is mainly produced by special endocrine tissue (the Leydig cells) in the male testicles. It is also produced by the adrenal glands in both males and females and, in small amounts, by the ovaries in females.


In males, testosterone stimulates development of secondary sex characteristics, including enlargement of the penis, growth of body hair, muscle development, and a deepening voice. It is present in large amounts in males during puberty and in adult males to regulate the sex drive and maintain muscle mass. In women, testosterone is converted to estradiol, the main sex hormone in females.


Testosterone production is stimulated and controlled by luteinizing hormone (LH), which is manufactured by the pituitary gland. Testosterone works within a negative feedback mechanism: as the testosterone level increases, LH production decreases, which slows testosterone production; decreased testosterone causes increased production of LH, which in turn stimulates testosterone production.


Testosterone levels are diurnal, peaking in the early morning hours (about 4:00 to 8:00 am), with the lowest levels in the evening (about 4:00 to 8:00 pm). Levels also increase after exercise and also decrease with age.


About two-thirds of testosterone circulates in the blood bound to sex-hormone binding globulin (SHBG) and slightly less than one-third bound to albumin. A small percent (less than 4%) circulates as free testosterone. The free plus the albumin-bound testosterone is the bioavailable fraction, which can act on target tissues.

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Fructosamine is a glycated serum protein which is formed by the combination of glucose and protein in the blood. Higher the levels of blood glucose, higher will be the concentration of fructosamine. Hence, the blood fructosamine levels reflect the amount of glucose present. Glycation mainly involves albumin which is the principal blood protein. Other protein substance may also combine with glucose. These protein substances have a lifespan of about 2-3 weeks. By measuring the level of fructosamine, you get an idea of the level of blood glucose over the past 2-3 weeks. Fructosamine test is usually performed on a blood sample to measure the level of fructosamine in blood. The test is performed to confirm Diabetes and also useful in estimating the blood sugar trends in the diabetic patient.

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Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) is an important part of the reproductive system. It’s responsible for the growth of ovarian follicles. Follicles produce estrogen and progesterone in the ovaries and help maintain the menstrual cycles in women. In men, FSH is a part of the development of the gonads as well as sperm production.


The FSH test measures the level of FSH found in your blood. Your doctor will order an FSH test to find the underlying cause of symptoms affecting the reproductive system.

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Fungi are microbes that exist in nature as one-celled yeasts or as branching filamentous molds (also may be spelled "moulds"). Only about 20 to 25 species of fungi are common causes of infection. Fungal tests detect infections and sometimes identify the fungus and help guide treatment. 


Fungal infections range from superficial skin infections to serious deep tissue, blood, lung, or systemic diseases.


Superficial fungal infections are very common. They may cause nail infections or itchy, red, scaly skin infections such as those commonly known as athlete's foot, jock itch, and ringworm, or yeast infections that cause white patches in the mouth (thrush) or vaginal itching and discharge. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), almost 75% of women will have at least one yeast infection in their lifetime.

Lung, blood, and systemic infections: less commonly, fungi cause serious lung infections, blood infections (septicemia), or systemic infections that can affect any organ in the body. Fungal lung infections typically start with the accidental inhalation of microscopic fungal spores. While anyone can get a serious lung or systemic fungal infection, most affected people will only experience mild to moderate flu-like symptoms. However, people who are immunocompromised, such as those with HIV/AIDS, organ transplant recipients, and people with an underlying condition such as diabetes or lung disease are at an increased risk of having a severe fungal infection, a systemic infection, and/or recurrent infections.

Fungal tests are used to detect and identify fungi in order to diagnose infections and help guide treatment. Fungal testing typically includes a microscopic examination of the sample on a slide, sometimes using a preparation or stain to aid in detection of fungal elements. This may be sufficient to determine that the infection is due to a fungus and, with superficial infections, no further testing may be required.


However, in cases of persistent, deep, or systemic infections when a more definitive diagnosis is needed, the microscopic exam may be followed by additional tests, such as culture and susceptibility testing, antigen or antibody tests, or molecular tests that detect fungal genetic material.

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Fungal Smear test is performed on a sample of skin to measure the level of Fungal Smear (Skin) in the skin.It is performed to confirm Fungal Infection of Skin and also during the treatment and after the treatment of Fungal Infection of Skin and Immunosuppressive Condition.

No special preparation is needed for Fungal Smear Koh Test Skin. Inform your doctor if you are on any medications or have any underlying medical conditions or allergies before undergoing Fungal Smear Koh Test Skin. Your doctor depending on your condition will give specific instructions.

The normal result for Fungal Smear Koh Test Skin for Fungal Smear (Skin) is A normal KOH test result shows no Fungi. A stained slide fluoresce is observed if positive for fungus. A positive test indicates Fungal infection but it cannot identify the organism. If KOH test is positive then, specimen is inoculated into culture media. for Unisex gender and for All age groups.


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Frequent urination is a condition defined when the need to urinate is felt several times an hour, caused by the false impression of once again having a full bladder. The quantity of urine passed during the day is not, however, larger, as the urinations are very small in volume. Daytime frequent urination is assessed based on the frequency with which the patient has to go to the toilet. This false impression is most of the time due to an irritation in one of the urinary organs. There can be many different underlying causes of this irritation, such as inflammation of the bladder, called cystitis or more commonly urinary infection, or prostatitis, which is an inflammation or benign swelling of the prostate in men.


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There is more than one definition of frizz. Researchers who studied the perception of hair health found that while women around the world perceived the absence of frizz as a sign of healthy hair, how they described "frizz" varied widely according to hair type and desired style. As described by women in the study, the two main types of frizz are:

1. short strands sticking up at the part and throughout the hair length that "project away from the main body of hair"; this type is especially noticeable on women with straight hair who are trying to achieve a smooth style; and

2. strands of wavy or curly hair that do not align with others to form a defined wave or curl.[1]

By this definition, frizz is not exclusively a characteristic of curly hair; straight hair can be frizzy, and tightly curled or afro-textured hair can be frizz-free.[2] "Frizz" sometimes refers to curly hair in general, but that is not what most women understand the term to mean

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Fungal infections of the skin are very common and include athlete's foot, jock itch, ringworm, and yeast infections.

Athlete's Foot:-

Picture of Ringworm of the Foot (Tinea Pedis)Athlete's foot, also called tinea pedis, is a fungal infection of the foot. It causes peeling, redness, itching, burning, and sometimes blisters and sores.

Athlete's foot is a very common infection. The fungus grows best in a warm, moist environment such as shoes, socks, swimming pools, locker rooms, and the floors of public showers. It is most common in the summer and in warm, humid climates. It occurs more often in people who wear tight shoes and who use community baths and pools.
 

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Food allergy is an immune system reaction that occurs soon after eating a certain food. Even a tiny amount of the allergy-causing food can trigger signs and symptoms such as digestive problems, hives or swollen airways. In some people, a food allergy can cause severe symptoms or even a life-threatening reaction known as anaphylaxis.

Food allergy affects an estimated 6 to 8 percent of children under age 3 and up to 3 percent of adults. While there's no cure, some children outgrow their food allergy as they get older.

It's easy to confuse a food allergy with a much more common reaction known as food intolerance. While bothersome, food intolerance is a less serious condition that does not involve the immune system.


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Continuing the theme of transitions from some of my  have you noticed that in times of transition (like when summer turns to fall, or winter turns to spring) you are particularly susceptible to feeling off balance? It seems to me that in months like September and June, when there’s a lot of change going on, I hear the phrase, “There’s just not enough time in the day to do everything I need to do…” even more often than most other times of the year.
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The flawless, blemish and acne-free skin that you've always desired is no more a dream, but reality.Here are brilliant face care tips to get that glow you've always wanted. Browse through our beauty secrets, tackle your skincare issues and follow our tricks regularly to get beautiful skin naturally. Excited, happy or stressed, it’s your face that gives you away. So we’ve rounded up expert tips on daily skin care, keeping blemishes at bay and enhancing your natural beauty. Whether you have time for intensive skin care or not, pamper yourself by acing the basics.

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Flu is a common infectious viral illness spread by coughs and sneezes. It can be very unpleasant, but you'll usually begin to feel better within about a week.

You can catch flu – short for influenza – all year round, but it's especially common in winter, which is why it's also known as "seasonal flu".

It's not the same as the common cold. Flu is caused by a different group of viruses and the symptoms tend to start more suddenly, be more severe and last longer.

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A fecal occult blood test (FOBT) looks at a sample of your stool (feces) to check for blood. Occult blood means that you can't see it with the naked eye. Blood in the stool means there is likely some kind of bleeding in the digestive tract. It may be caused by a variety of conditions, including:

  • Polyps
  • Hemorrhoids
  • Diverticulosis
  • Ulcers
  • Colitis, a type of inflammatory bowel disease

Blood in the stool may also be a sign of colorectal cancer, a type of cancer that starts in the colon or rectum. Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States and the third most common cancer in men and in women. A fecal occult blood test is a screening test that may help find colorectal cancer early, when treatment is most effective.

Other names: FOBT, stool occult blood, occult blood test, Hemoccult test, guaiac smear test, gFOBT, immunochemical FOBT, iFOBT; FIT

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