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January 8th, 2014 | Posted by Ibrar in Muscle Injuries - (Comments Off on PANCREATIC CYSTS)
Pancreatic cysts

Pancreatic cysts

Pancreatic cysts are pockets of fluid resembling sacs that usually occur on or within the pancreas.

The pancreas is large organ located at the back of the stomach that produces hormones and enzymes that assist in digesting food.

Pancreatic cysts Signs and Symptoms

One may not necessarily experience any symptoms from pancreatic cysts including pseudocysts. Pancreatic cysts are usually found when imaging tests of the stomach are done for another reason. Signs and symptoms of this disease commonly entail unrelenting abdominal ache that may be sent out to one’s back, nausea and vomiting, and a mass that can be felt in the upper abdomen.

Several cases of pancreatic cysts are not cancerous and do not cause visible symptoms. For sure, most of these cases are not cysts at all. These pockets of fluids are lined with scratch or inflammatory tissues which are not the type of the cells found in real cysts. However, some pancreatic cysts tend to be cancerous. In such a case, a doctor may take a sample of the pancreatic cysts fluid and determine the presence of cancer cells. However, in some cases, cysts slowly become cancerous thus the doctor may be unable to tell whether a cyst becomes cancerous. He might recommend monitoring of the cyst over a period of time for changes in shape or size.

Notably, if one notices persistent abdominal pain and fever it might mean that cysts have been infected, and the patient should see a doctor immediately. This can be a medical emergency since the fluid released by the pseudocyst can damage nearby blood vessels causing massive bleeding. This can lead to infection of the abdominal cavity. Should you notice severe abdominal pain, fainting, vomiting of blood, reduced consciousness and weak and rapid heartbeat, emergency medical treatment ought to be sought.

Pancreatic cysts Causes

What causes pancreatic cysts still remains unknown though cancerous cysts may be caused by mutation of the genes; it is also worth noting that some cysts are a result of rare illnesses in the body.

Pancreatic cysts Risk factors

Heavy alcohol intake and gallstones are some risk factors for pancreatic cysts whereas the major risk factors for pancreatitis are psseudocysts and abdominal injury.

Pancreatic cysts Treatment

Treatment though, depends on the type of cyst that one has and whether it is causing symptoms and pancreatic cysts should be monitored to determine whether to seek medical attention or not. Basically, stay safe from factors that might trigger pancreatic cysts in the body. If the symptoms persist, one should immediately seek the medical expertise from a general practitioner.

Pancreatic cysts Home remedies

The best way to avoid pseudocysts is to shun pancreatitis which is caused by heavy alcohol intake or gallstones which trigger pancreatitis. If the pancreatitis is as a result of alcohol use, abstain from it to reduce the risk of pancreatic cysts.

All about foot drop

December 4th, 2013 | Posted by Ibrar in Muscle Injuries - (Comments Off on All about foot drop)
foot drop

foot drop

The difficulty in lifting the front part of foot, or pain on lifting the foot upwards is known as the drop foot. The people with the drop foot cannot raise the front portion and drag the foot while walking. It is usually a clinical sign of some serious pathology going inside the body. The nervous system problem causes the drop foot more often. In some cases, the problem is temporary and drop foot gets cured on itself, but in some cases it becomes a permanent disorder and causes much discomfort. Some external support is required to keep the foot in normal position in such cases.

Also known as ‘drop foot’, it can occur at any age and may involve both feet in some cases. The treatment given is usually symptomatic.

Symptoms of foot drop:

The main signs and symptoms of foot drop are:

  • Difficulty in lifting front portion of foot
  • Dragging of foot or feet while walking
  • Raising thigh while walking
  • Steppage gait
  • Numbness of skin on top of foot

What causes foot drop:

Foot drop is not a disease itself; rather it is a sign of some other disease. It may become permanent in some cases. It is manifested in many neurological problems. The main causes may include:

Nerve supply is an essential thing for the maintenance of any body part. If nerve supply gets cut, the body part fails to act and gets destroyed as it is disconnected from brain. The nerve supply to foot comes from peroneal nerve, which is superficial and can be damaged easily and may result in foot drop. Sports injuries, knee surgery, delivery of a child or diabetes can cause the nerve damage. The problems in roots of nerve, that is the spinal cord, can also cause this problem.

The problem of brain like MS (multiple sclerosis), stroke, and cerebral palsy and Charcot-Marie-tooth disease can also result in foot drop.

Muscles are responsible for moving the feet up and down and any change in muscles also results in foot drop as movements are hampered. The weak or destroyed muscles cannot cause the foot to move and paralysis of that specific part occurs. Dystrophy of foot muscles, polio, Lou-Gehrig’s disease and many other problems can precipitate this problem.

Treatment options for Foot drop:

Addressing the underlying cause and removing it usually causes the foot drop problem to vanish. The immediate thing to do when this problem is encountered is to cure the symptoms and provide the relief. Following options might be helpful:

  • Wearing light weight braces keeps the foot at the normal straight position and helps during walking and avoids the foot dragging.
  • Specific shoe inserts are also helpful to provide the support to foot.
  • Taking certain exercises to help foot muscles to attain strength is very useful. A physiotherapist should be consulted for proper guidance in this regard. Some devices are now used to stimulate the muscles and get them back at normal work.
  • If problem persists after conventional methods, the surgery is performed to remove or repair the damaged nerve.

A chest injury refers to an injury that causes damage any structure in the chest. Minor forms of injuries to the chest include small injuries to the skin such as bruises, while severe forms of injuries to the chest may include damage to the internal organs such as the heart or the lungs. Injuries to the soft tissue of the chest may include lacerations, stab wounds, puncture wounds and abrasions.

A person with a chest injury may have bruising along with chest pain, chest swelling and chest wall tenderness.

Treatment for chest injury often depends on how severe the damage to the chest is. General treatment options may include cold compresses, rest, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication or narcotic pain medication for pain. Often rib fractures require narcotic pain medication for short-term use

Chest Injuries

Chest Injuries

only. Your doctor may also advise deep breathing exercises to reduce the risk of incurring pneumonia and atelectasis.

Important Disclaimer: this post on chest injuries, signs, symptoms, causes and treatment is for learning purposes only. When in doubt contact a medical professional or learn more about recognizing and managing these emergencies by enrolling in first aid and CPR courses through St Mark James.


Causes of chest injury may include the following:

  • Motor vehicle or car accidents
  • Altercations
  • Falls
  • Sports injuries – especially contact sports injuries
  • Occupational injuries
  • Industrial injuries
  • Gunshot wounds – puncture wounds
  • Stab or knife wounds – puncture wounds

Types of chest injuries include:

Signs and symptoms

Signs and symptoms of chest injury may include:

  • Mild chest pain
  • Chest pain while breathing
  • Chest pain while coughing
  • Worsening pain with movement
  • Sharp chest pain
  • Tenderness of the chest – breast tenderness or tenderness of the chest wall
  • Chest contusions – bruising to the chest wall
  • Mild breathing difficulties
  • Swelling of the chest wall
  • Back pain

Severe chest injury may cause the following symptoms:

  • Fainting
  • Deformed chest
  • Abdominal pain
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Difficulty breathing – severe – use of accessory muscles to support breathing
  • Nasal flaring
  • Rib retractions


General treatment for chest injury includes cold compresses, rest, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication for pain and deep breathing exercises. Many casualties, however, find it difficult to breathe deeply due to the increasing pain while breathing. It is important to note that deep breathing is very important in case you have a chest injury as it reduces the risk of pneumonia and atelectasis. Pain medication can be taken by these patients who are no able to breathe deeply due to the pain.

Severe chest injuries may occur due to rib fractures or damage to the vital internal organs such as the heart and the lungs. Treatment for severe chest injuries may include oxygen therapy and surgical repair of damaged tissues of the chest.

Treatment options for chest injury may include:

  • Cold compresses – apply every 2-3 hours for 20 minutes
  • Rest
  • Deep breathing
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medication for pain
  • Narcotic pain medication for short term use only
  • Oxygen therapy
  • Surgery to repair damaged tissues in the chest

Additional treatment measures include:

  • Stop smoking and avoid passive smoking
  • Perform deep breathing exercises for every 4 hours
  • Avoid lifting heavy objects
  • Take medication as directed by your health car provider and avoid skipping doses

Learn More

To learn more about minor and severe emergencies involving chest pain and injuries sign up for first aid and CPR training courses through workplace approved.

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Managing Back pain

March 18th, 2013 | Posted by vanfirstaid in Muscle Injuries - (0 Comments)

Back pain refers to any form of discomfort or pain in a person’s back. Back pain is usually caused by injuries to the back, inflammation of the bones, ligaments, tendons, muscles, disk or spinal cord in the back. Back pain occurs due to irritation or inflammation of the bones, or any disorder in the organs of the chest or abdomen is rare. The most common cause of back pain is acute lumbar strain.

A person having back pain may experience symptoms depending on the cause of back pain. Generally people may suffer from stiffness of the back, swelling and tenderness on the back muscles along with back pain. More severe symptoms may include back pain that radiates towards the leg, resulting in leg

Back Pain

Back Pain

weakness, leg numbness, urinary incontinence etc. Severe back pain may also cause the person to collapse, faint, experience high fever, excessive sweating, chest pain and abdominal pain.

Disclaimer: the material posted on this page on managing back pain is for learning purposes only. To learn about recognizing and managing skeletal and muscular injuries sign up for first aid and CPR training.


Back pain is caused due to the following:

  • Anxiety
  • Overwork
  • Ankylosing spondylitis
  • Back injury
  • Back strain
  • Back sprain
  • Coccydynia – tailbone pain
  • Depression
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Disk herniation
  • Dysmenorrhea –menstrual cramps
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Gallbladder disease
  • Herpes zoster
  • Pregnancy
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Sciatica
  • Uterine fibroids
  • Urinary tract infection

Rare causes of back pain include:

  • Addison’s disease
  • Abdominal aortic aneurysm
  • Bladder cancer
  • Bone cancer
  • Cervical cancer
  • Conus medullaris syndrome
  • Chordoma
  • Cushing’s syndrome
  • Dissecting thoracic aneurysm
  • Ependymoma
  • Endometriosis
  • Heart attack
  • Hyperparathyroidism
  • Kidney stones
  • Leukemia
  • Lymphoma
  • Multiple myeloma
  • Osteomyelitis
  • Ovarian cancer
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Polymyalgia rheumatica
  • Paget’s disease
  • Polymyositis
  • Prostate cancer
  • Rickets
  • Pyelonephritis
  • Scoliosis
  • Renal cell carcinoma
  • Scoliosis
  • Sickle cell crisis
  • Spinal stenosis
  • Spinal cord tumor
  • Uterine caner
  • Spondylolisthesis
  • Vertebral compression fracture

Signs and symptoms

Signs and symptoms of back pain include:

  • Back pain that worsens with movement
  • Muscle pain around the spine
  • Back stiffness
  • Back pain that resolves with rest
  • Back pain does not interfere with daily activities
  • Back tenderness

Signs and symptoms of severe back pain include:

  • Back pain in children
  • Back pain in elderly people with chronic diseases such as high blood pressure and diabetes and elderly with a history of abdominal aortic aneurysm
  • Fever
  • Fainting
  • Difficulty walking
  •  Difficulty urinating
  • Inability to walk
  • Numbness in the buttock or groin
  • Leg numbness – unilateral
  • Pain that radiates to the legs
  • Unusual urine color – red or pink urine
  • Severe flank pain
  • Severe back pain
  • Weakness of the leg


Treatment may depend on the underlying cause of the back pain. Mild pain caused by back sprain or strain may involve treatment options such as rest, keeping in mind that prolonged bed rest may worsen the condition. The patient may also take anti-inflammatory drugs to control pain. As the back pain improves, physical therapy should be initiated promptly. Consider stretching and strengthening exercises to resolve symptoms of back pain for speedy recovery. While most mild back pains improve within 1-2 weeks, severe back pain may take several months. Sometimes surgery may be required to repair the damage causing severe back pain.

Follow the treatment steps given below for quick recovery from back pain:

1. Rest

  • Avoid physical activities that may trigger back pain or worsen it
  • Avoid prolonged bed rest
  • Avoid lifting heavy objects
  • Resume walking once back pain begins to resolve

2. Cold compress

  • Apply cold compresses on the back for 20-30 minutes. This should be done every 1-2 hours

3. Warm compress

  • Apply warm compresses for back pain without physical injury
  • Apply warm compress for 20-30 minutes. this should be repeated every 1-2 hours after the first 3 days of onset

4. Exercise

  • After the first 3 days begin exercising
  • Perform back stretching exercises
  • Perform back range of motion exercises

5. Take pain medication

  • Take over-the-counter pain medication such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen to control pain

Other treatment options may include maintaining good posture, losing weight if you are overweight and taking medication as directed by your health care provider.

Learn More

To learn more about how to prevent, recognize and manage back injuries sign up for first aid and CPR training with a credible workplace approved provider.

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