More than any other substance, cortisol demonstrates how integral a role the stress response plays in the functioning of our body.
Our main stress hormone, cortisol is best known for the role it plays in jacking up our fight or flight system, but this versatile substance also
- affects our metabolism,
- tamps down inflammation,
- regulates blood pressure,
- affects glucose levels, and even
- impacts our sleep/wake cycle.
Unfit for Work: The startling rise of disability in America | Planet Money – By Chana Joffe-Walt – March 2013
This may seem like a strange article to post for someone who’s on disability themselves. However, I know there are many, many people out there scamming our disability system, sometimes for eye-popping amounts.
- Scammers are the ones that give the impression that helping supposedly disabled people is a pointless waste of money.
- Scammers are the ones that will cause the system to go bankrupt.
- Scammer are the ones who cause our own painful conditions to be doubted and denied (for both disability and opioid treatment).
Yet we are the ones who have to shoulder the blame because we’re accused of being such scammers, both in disability claims and in getting opioids for our chronic pain. Continue reading
What is a cytokine storm? – By Amber Dance – Apr 2020
As Covid-19 cases fill the hospitals, among the sickest and most likely to die are those whose bodies react in a signature, catastrophic way.
- Immune cells flood and attack the lungs they should be protecting.
- Blood vessels leak;
- the blood itself clots.
- Blood pressure plummets and
- organs start to fail.
Such cases, doctors and scientists increasingly believe, are due to an immune system gone overboard — so that it harms instead of helps. Continue reading
Vitamin D can only help if you start with a deficiency. It has little effect if you already have enough of it in your body.
After studying global data from the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, researchers have discovered a strong correlation between severe vitamin D deficiency and mortality rates.
The researchers noted that patients from countries with high COVID-19 mortality rates, such as Italy, Spain and the UK, had lower levels of vitamin D compared to patients in countries that were not as severely affected. Continue reading
It looks like we inherit not only chronic physical pain but also a fourfold increased risk of both anxiety and depression.
Somehow, it makes sense to me that having a body “too loose” and being physically “unstable” would also manifest as being mentally “unstable”, that along with our physical pain, we also suffer from mental pain.
To assess the risk of psychiatric disorders in Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (EDS) and hypermobility syndrome. Continue reading
Why smart people believe coronavirus myths – BBC Future – By David Robson – Apr 2020
This shows that intelligence alone doesn’t provide immunity from hoax messaging, and reminds me not to get lazy and just follow my “hunches”.
The BBC’s Reality Check team is also checking popular coronavirus claims, and the World Health Organization is keeping a myth-busting page regularly updated too.
I find it sad that it’s come to this: a global science-based agency having to use precious time and energy defending its actions against myths that can be dispelled so easily. Continue reading
I’m not usually a fan of “I accepted my pain, so it got better” stories because they so often reach an overly optimistic and, to me, unrealistic, outcome. But this excellent essay paints a far more realistic picture of what acceptance might look like and how it could be nurtured.
…I had discovered that I was no longer trusted by my doctors about my own body or experiences.
I think this distressing experience is common to all people with invisible and externally undetectable illness, especially when reporting chronic pain. Continue reading
Dogs excel at sniffing out human illness – by Christa Trexler – Cardiology, UC San Diego – Jul 2018
This is just something I found interesting and it makes me wonder what else dogs can “know” about us, for instance, how dogs left at home know when we are heading back before we get close to home.
For decades doctors have observed that dogs can detect certain diseases in humans by simply sniffing it out, but scientists still don’t understand how dogs are able to spot cancer or diabetes using only their noses.
However, advancements over the last couple of years have brought researchers closer to solving this puzzle, which could lead to revolutionary treatment options for patients with cancer or diabetes.
Opinion | These Coronavirus Exposures Might Be the Most Dangerous – The New York Times – By Joshua D. Rabinowitz and Caroline R. Bartman – Apr 2020
The importance of viral dose is being overlooked in discussions of the coronavirus.
Our current policies restricting all outdoor activities have been bothering me because it just makes sense that some exposures are far more serious than others. Yet, all the parks and beaches have been closed, and that’s where I’d like to go walk/hike/bike. I don’t understand the reasoning behind these seemingly “safe” places (of course, only if you don’t congregate).
For those of us needing a break from the house, why shouldn’t we be allowed to go to a park and hike with our household unit? Continue reading
When I first read these symptoms, I immediately thought of EDS with POTS and MCAS, which is a common combination.
Scientists at the National Institutes of Health have identified a genetic explanation for a syndrome characterized by multiple frustrating and difficult-to-treat symptoms, including
- dizziness and lightheadedness,
- skin flushing and itching,
- gastrointestinal complaints,
- chronic pain, and
- bone and joint problems. Continue reading