Increased Yogurt Consumption Tied to Lower Diabetes Risk

March 26, 2015

Dairy products get a lot of bad press, but yogurt could actually have more than a few health benefits. According to new research, increasing your intake of yogurt could actually lower your risk of developing Type II Diabetes.

Researchers recently called for more clinical trials on the effect of increased intake of yogurt on diabetes prevention. Those calls were linked to findings that seem to suggest a lower risk of Type II Diabetes after increasing consumption of yogurt. The study was published in the journal BMC Medicine and was based on an analysis of data from three different studies.

About 95% of diabetes cases in the United States involve Type II Diabetes. Diabetes is one of the conditions that could qualify you for Social Security disability benefits. However, a diagnosis by itself does not make you eligible to receive disability payments from the government. You must prove that your condition has resulted in symptoms that make it difficult for you to work. For instance, complications from diabetes can include renal failure, kidney damage, kidney function eye problems, and blindness. Additionally, these conditions must have lasted for 12 months, or must be expected to last for at least 12 months for you to be eligible for benefits.

Researchers Look at Stem Cell Transplants for Treatment of Multiple Sclerosis

March 22, 2015
Patients who suffer from the debilitating condition multiple sclerosis (MS) may have new hope for treatment. Researchers have announced findings from a small clinical trial, which indicated significant benefits from the use of a patient's own stem cells. As part of the trial, patients were given a transplant of hematopoietic stem cells from their own bodies. According to researchers, patients experienced disease remission after the transplant. These particular types of stem cells are involved in the formation of blood, and are sourced from bone marrow. As part of the trial, patients were also given high-dose immunosuppressive medications. The study's findings were published recently in JAMA Neurology, and focused on an evaluation of 24 patients who suffered from MS. They suffered from a type of multiple sclerosis called active relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis, in which the patients have certain phases in which the condition is very active, followed by certain phases in which they do not experience any symptoms at all. Researchers found that an overwhelming majority of patients, close to 80%, who underwent stem cell transplants regained complete neurologic function, and continued to retain it for three years after treatment. They also found that patients did not see any aggravation of their symptoms after the stem cell transplant. They also did not see the development of any new lesions after the procedure. In more than 90% of the cases, there was no progression of the disease, and in 86% of the cases, there were no more periods of relapse. The Social Security Administration (SSA) does consider MS to be a disability that qualifies for benefits, but that doesn't automatically qualify you for an approved claim. Speak to an Atlanta Social Security disability attorney about the criteria that your condition must meet for you to be eligible for benefits.

TBI Study Questions Effectiveness of Progesterone

March 17, 2015

Progesterone, long regarded as a reliable treatment for traumatic brain injury (TBI), and regularly administered to patients with such conditions, may not be as effective in treating the injury as earlier believed.

According to the results of a new study that was published recently in The New England Journal of Medicine, when the drug was administered over a period of five days after patients suffered a traumatic brain injury, there was no significant improvement in the clinical outcomes of the patients.

In the trial, researchers monitored 1,195 patients between 16 and 17 years of age. The patients suffered from TBI, and were divided into two groups randomly. One group received progesterone, while the other was placed on a placebo. The patients received the progesterone within eight hours after suffering the injury. The treatment continued over 120 hours.

The researchers found that there was no significant change in the patients' clinical outcomes after being administered progesterone.

The results of progesterone therapy were measured using the Glasgow Outcome scale, and indicated that just over 50% of patients had good recovery or moderate disability after treatment. In comparison, 50% of the patients who were placed on the placebo had similar results.

This only seems to confirm the difficulty in treating a patient with a traumatic brain injury. TBI can be of various types, and can affect different people in different ways. There are long-term consequences of the disease that are only now coming to light.
Therefore, persons who have suffered a traumatic brain injury must immediately begin to work on filing a claim for disability benefits, especially when consequences of the injury prevent them from going to work and earning a living.

Diabetes Linked to Accelerated Cognitive Decline: Will I Qualify for Disability Benefits?

February 28, 2015

According to new research in the Annals of Internal Medicine Journal, people who are unable to control their diabetes are much more likely to experience a faster rate of cognitive decline. This would include the onset of symptoms such as poor memory, poor word recall, and impaired functioning. According to the recent study, approximately 19% of the participants who were analyzed were found to experience such symptoms. In fact, researchers found that these participants experienced cognitive decline five years earlier than people who did not suffer from diabetes.

Cognitive decline can be extremely difficult for an individual, and it is often associated with dementia. A large number of studies now link diabetes to dementia. For example, one study found that people who suffer from Type II diabetes have a higher risk of suffering from Alzheimer's disease.

Controlling diabetes is critical, and studies continue to point to the serious long-term health consequences of failure to control blood sugar levels.

Persons with diabetes who want to apply for Social Security disability benefits must prove that their condition prevents them from performing activities in the work environment. If follows that not everybody who suffers from diabetes automatically qualifies for benefits. If your diabetes is under control and does not impair your ability to live a normal life, it is highly unlikely that you will receive benefits. However, if you have limitations with bending, standing, sitting for long periods of time, you may be entitled to disability payments. In addition, the existence of complications such as renal failure and impaired vision may also help an applicant quality for social security disability benefits.

Does My Bipolar Disorder Make Me Eligible for Disability Benefits?

February 23, 2015

Bipolar disorder , also known as manic-depressive, is a mood disorder, and like other mood disorders, can be difficult to diagnose. In fact, early symptoms of bipolar are often attributed to general moodiness or tiredness. Unfortunately, those issues to tend to lead to more problematic conditions if left undiagnosed and untreated.

Bipolar disorder is characterized by episodes of mania and depression. An individual who suffers from bipolar disorder goes through phases of mania, in which he may completely lose touch with reality, followed immediately by episodes of extreme depression. The person may also find it difficult to complete tasks, and may start several projects, only to leave them incomplete. During the mania phase, a person with bipolar disorder may speak very rapidly, and for long periods of time. They often also jump from topic to topic.

Depression sets in during the low phases of bipolar disorder. The person may suffer from problems that include loss of appetite, sleeplessness, and low energy levels. He or she may also feel very irritable.

Social Security Disability Benefits for Bipolar Disorder

A person who suffers from bipolar disorder may qualify for Social Security benefits, but this depends on the kind symptoms that he or she suffers from during periods of mania and depression.

If your condition impairs your ability to work, you may be entitled to disability benefits. The Social Security Administration will require that you have a history of consistent episodes of mania or depression, or a combination of both. It will also require that your symptoms limit your daily activities, prevent you from interacting with others normally, as well as that you experience recurring episodes of decompensation, lasting for long durations.

Recreational Running May Reduce Osteoarthritis Knee Risk

February 17, 2015

Contrary to popular belief, running could actually be beneficial to knee health. According to a new study, recreational running does not have any link to the development of osteoarthritis, and may actually be beneficial to the knee joint.

Earlier studies which have pointed to an association between running and knee arthritis usually focused on professional male runners. However, according to researchers, their new study focused only on non-elite recreational runners. Based on an analysis of 2,683 participants, researchers found that the prevalence of knee pain was lower among runners as compared to non-runners. Among runners, the knee pain rate was 35%, as compared to 41% for those who did not run.

It may be too early to conclude that running has a direct effect on knee health, and therefore directly contributes to a reduced risk of osteoarthritis. Runners generally tend to be closer to their ideal weight and fitter, and are also likely to follow a healthier lifestyle compared to non-runners. These may also be reasons for the reduced occurrence of osteoarthritis.

Osteoarthritis and Social Security Disability Benefits

Having osteoarthritis does not necessarily mean that you will qualify for disability benefits. You may not qualify for benefits even if you suffer from mild or occasional pain and stiffness in the joints.

To qualify for benefit payments, your symptoms must severely restrict your ability to move around, stand for long periods of time, or get up from a seated position. Additionally, if your symptoms affect your ability to use your hands, or prevent you from performing other essential routine work activities, then you have a better chance of recovering benefits.

If you have questions about whether your osteoarthritis symptoms will qualify for disability benefits, speak with an experienced social security lawyer as soon as possible.

Drug Studies Show Hope for Multiple Sclerosis Patients

February 11, 2015

Researchers working on a treatment for Multiple Sclerosis (MS) have reported progress. According to the teams from New York's Rockefeller University and the University of California-Riverside, they have both used Indazole Chloride to successfully reverse the symptoms of MS. The studies were conducted in mice, and they found that the drug triggered regeneration of the protective coating of the nerve, or myelin sheath, that is typically destroyed when MS sets in.

Multiple Sclerosis is a condition in which a person may suffer from a steady and progressive breakdown of the nervous system, including the senses of hearing and vision, and motor control. As the disease progresses, the person may suffer from problems walking, difficulty with coordination, numb sensations in the arms or legs, muscular weakness, vision problems, hearing loss, loss of balance, and speech problems. Often times, a person with MS may suffer from complete and permanent paralysis.

MS is a disease that affects the body's immune system and it's estimated that, in the United States alone. more than 40,000 people suffer this debilitating disease.

Multiple Sclerosis and Social Security Disability Benefits

The Social Security Administration (SSA) specifically lists Multiple Sclerosis in its listing of impairments that qualify for disability benefits. However, not all patients who suffer from this condition are eligible for benefits. Your multiple sclerosis symptoms must meet certain criteria for you to qualify for Social Security payments. You must suffer from a severe deterioration in your vision, have difficulty walking or using your hands, suffer partial paralysis of your limbs, have severe muscle fatigue or weakness, suffer from memory loss, or battle nerve disturbances that affect your ability to work.

Disability Benefits for Hidradenitis Suppurativa

January 13, 2015

Recent studies found that skin lesions, which are a symptom of Hidradenitis Suppurativa, can very often be contaminated by dangerous bacteria. These pathogens are linked to skin infections and soft tissue infections.

According to research recently published in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Emerging Infectious Diseases Journal, when researchers studied these lesions, and tested for bacterial cultures on some samples, they found bacteria that were specific to skin infections and soft tissue infections. The researchers suggest that antimicrobial therapy for the treatment of Hidradenitis Suppurativa be continued in patients.

Hidradenitis Suppurativa is a skin condition that is characterized by painful abscesses, which can appear all over the body or only in some parts. Typically however, these lesions occur in those parts of the body that produce a lot of sweat and oil glands. Lesions therefore typically appear in the armpits, pubic area, and inner thighs. A person who suffers from this condition may have chronic inflammation of the skin, and lesions that are painful and filled with pus.

A condition like this is undoubtedly traumatic, but does the person qualify for Social Security disability benefits?

The Social Security Administration (SSA) recognizes that this condition can be disabling, and includes it in its listing of impairments that qualify for benefits. However, in order to qualify for the benefits, certain criteria must be met.

Your lesions must qualify as extensive skin lesions, and must appear in your underarms, groin, or a perineum. These lesions must have been present for a minimum of three months. However, even if your symptoms do not match these, you may still qualify for benefits if you're able to show that the lesions are painful or disabling enough to impair your ability to work.

To understand if you qualify for disability benefits for Hidradenitis Suppurativa, speak with an experienced Social Security disability benefits attorney as soon as possible.

Pre-surgery Exercise and Diet Help Ease Recovery After Colon Cancer Surgery

December 10, 2014

According to new studies, exercising, maintaining a healthy diet and practicing relaxation techniques in the weeks before colon cancer surgery could actually help a person recover quicker.

The results came from a study consisting of 38 patients. These patients were put through a "prehabilitation" program for roughly 24 days. During the prehabilitation, they took part in approximately 50 minutes of physical exercise three days a week, and were administered a personalized nutrition program that included whey protein supplementation. They were also given lessons for relaxation techniques to help reduce stress.

After surgery, patients who were put through the prehabilitation program were compared to another group of patients who were only put through the rehabilitation program, and were not given pre-surgery prep. Researchers found that those patients who had been given prehabilitation preparation before the surgery walked approximately 25 meters longer in six minutes, compared to patients in the group that did not undergo prehabilitation. According to the researchers, this clearly indicates that rehabilitation helps a person recover after a surgery, and better prepares them for the stresses of surgery.

If you suffer from cancer, you can apply for disability benefits, provided you meet certain criteria. If your colorectal tumor is inoperable, and cannot be completely removed by surgical procedure, you may qualify for benefits. You can also file a claim if your tumor spreads to the lymph nodes. You must also prove that your inability to work due to your condition is expected to last for one year, or must have lasted for at least one year.

One of the best places on the Internet for information about cancer is the American Cancer Society website.

New Approaches to the Treatment of Schizophrenia Focus on Eliminating Distractions

November 19, 2014

Schizophrenia is a severe and disabling medical disorder that can cause delusions and hallucinations. Persons who suffer from this condition often find it very difficult to have a coherent conversation because of mental distractions. New medical approaches to the treatment of this serious condition are focusing on eliminating distractions in a person's mind that prevent him or her from thinking clearly.

Many persons with schizophrenia find it difficult to stay on topic, because their minds frequently jump from issue to issue. Researchers currently working on treatments for schizophrenia have focused less on eliminating delusions, and more on helping patients think clearly. One of the techniques being implemented is the use of pharmaceutical drugs that improve memory and enhance brain performance. A number of pharmaceutical companies are currently dedicating resources to developing these medications, but success has been slow. Therefore, some clinicians have begun using exercise and fish oil pills that are believed to be good for the brain.

In other clinics, doctors are recommending special computer games that are designed to train schizophrenics to simply tune out distractions in their mind, and focus on performing simple instructions. These doctors believe that antipsychotic drugs can only do so much to help deal with the distractions in the person's mind. They do not believe that video games will completely replace antipsychotic drugs, but they do believe that helping these patients tune out such distractions can help provide them a better quality of life.

If you suffer from schizophrenia, you may be eligible for disability benefits under the Social Security program, but it's important to have a dedicated lawyer working on your behalf.

Regular Exercise Helps Relieve ADHD Symptoms

November 14, 2014

Children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) who participate in regular exercise may see enhanced memory, cognitive skills and mental preparedness as a result.

According to research recently published in The Journal of Pediatrics children who took part in regular physical activity or exercise showed much greater improvements in cognitive performance than children who did not. According to researchers, the findings support a growing movement to increase physical activity among children who suffer from ADHD.

Physical exercise and activities are good for all children and adults, but are often highly recommended for children who suffer from Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. In fact, researchers found that certain activities may help ADHD sufferers resist distraction, and increase memory and cognitive proficiency. In the study, children were able to switch from task to task much more easily after they had engaged in physical exercise.

In fact, physical activity seems to benefit children with ADHD more than children who don't suffer from the condition. Another study found that exercise and physical activity programs helped children improve their math and reading test scores, especially children who suffered from ADHD.

Children who suffer from Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder may be eligible for benefits under the Social Security disability program, but there are complex issues involved in the filing and determination processes. Contact an experienced disability attorney for help with your benefits request.

Brain Injuries May Affect Girls Differently Than Boys

October 27, 2014

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is one of the impairments that is listed in the Social Security Administration (SSA) impairments listing, which categorizes illnesses that are eligible for disability benefits.

A new study, published in the journal PLOS ONE, found that girls may have different responses to traumatic brain injuries, compared to males. According to the study, teenage girls who suffered a concussion, or a mild traumatic brain injury, are much more likely to suffer difficulties such as psychological issues, suicidal thoughts, smoking, and being the victims of bullying.

Those are interesting study results, because traumatic brain injuries typically affect more numbers of boys than girls. Approximately 2.5 million people suffer a traumatic brain injury that is serious enough to require a visit to an emergency room, and those injuries are much more common among males. However, girls are likely to suffer injuries in bicycle accidents, while playing sports, and during cheerleading.

Any type of head injury is very serious, and symptoms and complications can linger or appear long after the initial event which caused the injury. Please seek medical help as soon after an injury to the skull as possible.

Colostomy and Social Security Disability Benefits

October 24, 2014

Colostomy is a surgical procedure that is performed to treat numerous gastrointestinal conditions and injuries, as well as certain types of cancer. During this procedure, one end of the large intestine is brought out through the abdominal wall. Stools are emptied into a bag that is attached to the abdomen.

Sometimes referred to as bowel diversion therapy, colostomies are typically performed when the person is suffering from problems with the lower bowel. Permanent colostomies are very often performed in the case of colon cancer. Colostomy may also be performed when a person suffers from ulcerative colitis, Crohn's disease, colonic polyps, irritable bowel syndrome, and colorectal cancer.

If you have suffered from any of these conditions, and have undergone a colostomy, it's recommended that you discuss a potential claim for disability benefits with a Social Security lawyer in Atlanta. The Social Security Administration will consider whether you are unable to work and earn a living as a result of your condition. For instance, if you are unable to lift heavy objects as a result of the surgery, and this condition is likely to be permanent, the SSA may rule that you are unable to go back to a job which did involve lifting heavy objects.

Generally, disability benefits will depend on how the colostomy and wearing a colostomy bag affects your quality of life and ability to work. Medical records and nature of a person's job will be key factors in any determination of payments.

Accidental Shootings a Common Cause of Disability

September 30, 2014

The United States is home to a peculiar phenomenon of young children and adults being shot accidentally by guns that are not safely stored or properly supervised. According to a new report, as many as 70% of accidental shootings involving children by friends, family and neighbors are entirely preventable.

The statistics were released as part of a report by Everytown for Gun Safety, which has some very grim statistics for children and parents.

According to the report:

• Between 2007 and 2011, an average of 62 children per year below the age of 14 were accidentally shot or killed.
• Between December 2012 and December 2013, at least 100 children died in unintentional shootings like this. That works out to approximately 2 shootings per week.
• About two-thirds of the shootings were unintentional or unintended, accounting for approximately 65% of the fatalities. According to the data, the shootings took place in the home, or a car that belonged to the victim's family.
• In most of the cases, the guns involved in the shootings were owned legally by the owners, but were not safely secured.
• In more than two- thirds of the cases, the shootings could have been avoided if the guns had been stored properly, and kept inaccessible to children.

As many as 84% of Americans and 81% of gun owners favor laws that would result in gun owners being charged with crimes when a child gains access to an irresponsibly stored weapon, and injures or kills himself or someone else. In spite of that fact, there are no such laws in place.

Gun ownership is a right under the U.S. Constitution. But we must do a better job of protecting our citizens from unsafe gun practices, or the selling of weapons to those who are unable to comply with proper safety measures. It may also be worth considering whether a mandate should be implemented that would require gun owners to purchase a personal liability insurance policy, which would help cover the costs of treatment for those accidently shot and injured.

Painkiller Injections May Not Benefit Patients with Spinal Stenosis

September 22, 2014

Spinal stenosis is a condition in which patients suffer severe bilateral pain that shoots through the legs and radiates to the buttocks. Many patients use painkilling steroid injections to help deal with the discomfort. However, recent studies have found that these steroid injections make minimal difference to the intensity of the pain.

In fact, according to a study that was published recently in the New England Journal of Medicine the difference is actually clinically irrelevant. The Journal also raises questions about the advantages of using steroid injections to treat patients with central spinal stenosis. The Journal also recommends that patients who have had injections of steroids to treat the pain avoid having repeat injections if they do not find any benefit from the first injection.

The report also cautions doctors about prescribing these injections for patients who suffer from spinal stenosis. In fact according to the researchers, the injections could actually have side effects. Overall, the injections have been found to be safe, but in some cases, there may be complications that may be serious enough to cause death. In many other countries, governments are actually pulling out funding for spinal injections because it is considered a waste of money.

Spinal stenosis is a condition that is caused by the narrowing of the space around the spinal cord. This narrowing causes excessive pressure on the spinal cord and nerve roots leading to symptoms that include severe pain in the legs and buttocks, weakness in the legs and numbness. Persons who suffer from this condition may find it difficult to stand for long periods of time, walk around, and ultimately go back to work.
If you suffer from severe pain as a result of spinal stenosis, speak with Atlanta Social Security disability attorney Lisa Siegel about claiming benefits.