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Know These Warning Signs Of High Blood Pressure Which Can Be Life-Threatening

The Kashmir Monitor





High blood pressure is an extremely common health condition which does not cause noticeable symptoms. Symptoms of high blood pressure are usually mistaken for less serious health conditions. The symptoms of high blood pressure which do show include the likes of dizziness and stomach pain. These are the primary reasons why you must check your blood pressure daily. It is also important to know signs of hypertensive crisis, a situation when the blood pressure rises quickly and severely, and can lead to further complications such as heart attack, stroke, damage to eyes and loss of kidney function.

Hypertensive crisis can be a life-threatening condition. Common symptoms of hypertensive crisis, according to American Heart Association, include severe anxiety, nosebleeds, severe headaches and shortness of breath. Immediate medical attention is needed in case a person who experiences sudden increase in blood pressure along with hypertensive crisis.

Hypersensitive crisis usually falls under two categories: urgent and emergency. An urgent hypertensive crisis occurs when you have extremely high blood pressure, but the doctor finds no damage to the organs. In case of an emergency hypertensive crisis situation, the blood pressure is extremely high and there is also a damage caused to organs. Emergency hypertensive crisis can be life-threatening.


High blood pressure can be kept under control by some simple yet effective lifestyle modifications. A healthy diet and regular exercise is the key to keeping blood pressure under control. Intake of alcohol should be avoided under all circumstances. Also, people with high blood pressure should add less salt to their food and avoid foods high in sodium such as processed and packaged foods.

Hypertension: Other effective ways to keep blood pressure under control

1. Watch your waist line: For keeping your blood pressure under control, it is important that you lose weight and watch your waistline. Carrying too much weight around your waist line can put you at great risk of high blood pressure. Men who have a waistline of greater than 40 inches are at risk of high blood pressure and women who have waistline greater than 35 inches are also at high risk.

2. Exercise regularly: A minimum of 150 minutes of exercise is important to keep your blood pressure under control. Aerobic exercises like walking, jogging, cycling, swimming and dancing are all good for keeping your blood pressure under control.

3. Eat a healthy diet: Make sure that your diet includes lots of fresh fruits and vegetables. Include more of foods rich in potassium in your diet as it helps in reducing effect of sodium on blood pressure. Foods rich in potassium include bananas, avocados, spinach, mushrooms, peas, cucumbers, broccoli, oranges and sweet potatoes to name a few.

4. Quit smoking: Smoking increases your blood pressure for many minutes after you finish smoking. Quit smoking to enable your body to restore normal levels of blood pressure.

5. Cut back caffeine: Caffeine can increase your blood pressure levels. Limit your caffeine intake to keep your blood pressure levels under control.

6. Take less stress:Stress is a major contributor to high blood pressure levels. Take less stress by indulging in hobbies or by simply changing your attitude towards stress. Yoga and meditation are also good ways of reducing stress.

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Hepatitis A Causes and Symptoms

The Kashmir Monitor



Generally speaking, hepatitis A is more common in parts of the planet that are developing. It’s for the fact that sanitation and food handling practices are by and large poor. However, medical experts say that living in developed countries can also put you at risk of having hepatitis A, but it’s really a rare occurrence.

Just like what’s mentioned earlier, hepatitis A is caused by the hepatitis A virus or HAV. It can be spread around by someone who has hepatitis A because he or she is a carrier of the virus behind it. It is said that a person with hepatitis A is most infectious about 2 weeks before he or she begins to experience signs and symptoms.

Here are some of the ways that hepatitis A is spread around:


Consumption of food that is prepared by a person who has hepatitis A. This is most especially true if he or she has not properly washed his or her hands.

Drinking of water that is contaminated with the hepatitis A virus.

Intake of raw or undercooked seafood obtained from contaminated water.

Close contact with someone who has hepatitis A. This includes having sexual intercourse with an infected person, especially when the rectal or anal area has been touched with the fingers, mouth or tongue.

Using illegal drugs, especially when paraphernalia contaminated with the hepatitis A virus are used.


Medical experts say that it may take a while before the various signs and symptoms associated with hepatitis A show up. They say that someone may experience them about 4 weeks after getting infected. It’s even possible for someone with hepatitis A to not experience any sign and symptom at all.

Some of the initial signs and symptoms of hepatitis A include:

Tiredness and malaise
Achy muscles and joints
Pain in the upper right section of the abdomen
Loss of appetite
Mild fever
Sore throat
Diarrhea or constipation
Hives or raised rash that’s itchy

These initial signs and symptoms associated with hepatitis A can last anywhere from a few days only to a couple of weeks. Afterwards, as the infection of the liver progresses, the following may be experienced by the individual:

Jaundice, which is the yellowing of the skin as well as the whites of the eyes (sclera)

Pale colored stools
Dark colored urine
Skin itching

Tenderness and swelling of the upper right section of the abdomen

Although it rarely happens, hepatitis A can cause liver failure. When such develops, the person who is infected may experience severe vomiting, frequent bruising, bleeding of the nose and gums, drowsiness and confusion.

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Busting myths around blood donation

The Kashmir Monitor



As per the World Health Organisation (WHO) norms, ideally, one per cent of the total population should regularly donate blood to meet the requirements, which is anywhere between 1% and 3% of country’s population that would require blood in a year.

Contrary to the myth about blood donations making a person weak or anaemic, the body replenishes the lost blood in a matter of a few days, say experts.

“A healthy bone marrow makes a constant supply of red cells, plasma and platelets, so there is no question of becoming weak, much less anaemic. It is a myth and should not deter people from donating blood,” says Dr RK Singal, chairman, internal medicine department, BLK super-speciality Hospital.


The donors can give either whole blood or specific blood components, as there is sophisticated equipment available these days that extract relevant components from blood and the rest of the blood can be transfused back to the donor.

As per the World Health Organisation (WHO) norms, ideally, one per cent of the total population should regularly donate blood to meet the requirements, which is anywhere between 1% and 3% of country’s population that would require blood in a year.

About 65% of India’s population is young and if this section donates blood regularly, chances of the country facing blood shortage will be remote. Hence, there is all the more reason for people, especially youngsters, to come forward and be regular blood donors.

How to prepare

Have enough fruit juice and water in the night and morning before you donate

Have a full meal 3 hours before donation; never on an empty stomach

Have some rest for about 10-15 minutes after donation

Have some snacks or a juice with high sugar content after donation

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Erectile dysfunction’s connection with lifestyle

The Kashmir Monitor



By Dr Anjani Kumar Agrawal

healthy-lifestyle-can-reverse-effects-of-hypertensionAll over the world, but perhaps more so in India, men are embarrassed to admit that they may have a problem getting or keeping an erection — a condition known as erectile dysfunction (ED).

All over the world, but perhaps more so in India, men are embarrassed to admit that they may have a problem getting or keeping an erection — a condition known as erectile dysfunction (ED). From my research, I have found a strong link between ED and stress. Other major causes include smoking, drinking, diabetes, hypertension or high blood pressure and cholesterol levels. My advice to these patients is — do not get even more stressed over this situation. Instead, focus on taking the right medication and making some changes to your lifestyle, so you can once again enjoy a satisfactory sexual life.



We normally diagnose ED and its underlying causes by asking the patient a few questions about his medical and sexual history. This is sometimes done by sharing a questionnaire with the patient. The questions that we ask are designed to help us understand the cause of ED in the particular patient.

We also do a physical exam, ask for certain blood tests to rule out other medical conditions responsible for erectile dysfunction, and recommend imaging tests (if required) to determine whether the person is physically able to have an erection or not.


Underlying medical conditions such as diabetes, hypertension and hypercholesterolaemia (high cholesterol levels) can cause ED. In these cases, ED can be reversed once the patient starts treatment.

In my experience, many men suffer from ED because of work stress, family pressure and anxiety. So, changes in lifestyle with regular exercise, yoga, abstaining from alcohol and smoking, and proper counselling help in treating ED. Along with this, medicines for ED are usually prescribed for about 3 to 6 months by which time lifestyle changes start to take effect and the patient is physically and mentally healthier, which helps resolve the problem.

An estimated 16% to 25% of men experience ED at some point in their lives. I would urge them not to be embarrassed about it. Seek medical help from a urologist or andrologist; get the necessary advice/medication; and go on to enjoy a healthy, fulfilling sexual life.

The author of this article is Dr Anjani Kumar Agrawal, head, andrology, department of urology sciences, Max Smart Super Speciality Hospital, Saket

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