FAQ - Common Medical and Disability Questions and Answers

A list of frequently asked questions pertaining to medical terms and conditions listed on the Disabled World website.

What is the Difference between paraplegic and quadriplegic?

Paraplegia is a condition in which the lower part of a person's body is paralyzed and cannot willfully function. It is usually the result of spinal cord injury or a congenital condition such as spina bifida, but polyneuropathy may also result in paraplegia. If the arms are also paralyzed, quadriplegia is a more appropriate diagnosis.

Quadriplegia, also known as tetraplegia, is a symptom in which a human experiences paralysis of all four limbs, although not necessarily total paralysis.

What is SCI?

SCI is an abbreviation for Spinal Cord Injury. Spinal cord injury causes myelopathy or damage to white matter or myelinated fiber tracts that carry sensation and motor signals to and from the brain. It also damages gray matter in the central part of the spinal, causing segmental losses of interneurons and motoneurons. Spinal cord injury can occur from many causes. Visit our SCI Back pain and Sciatica articles for more information.

What is Asthma?

Asthma is a chronic illness involving the respiratory system in which the airway occasionally constricts, becomes inflamed, and is lined with excessive amounts of mucus, often in response to one or more triggers. Disabled World has a number of informative articles relating to Asthma Allergies and Bronchial Infections

What are human embryonic stem cells and stem cell research?

Stem cells are cells that have the remarkable potential to develop into many different cell types in the body. Serving as a sort of repair system for the body, they can theoretically divide without limit to replenish other cells for as long as the person or animal is still alive. When a stem cell divides, each "daughter" cell has the potential to either remain a stem cell or become another type of cell with a more specialized function, such as a muscle cell, a red blood cell, or a brain cell.

Why do scientists want to use stem cell lines?

Once a stem cell line is established from a cell in the body, it is essentially immortal, no matter how it was derived. That is, the researcher using the line will not have to go through the rigorous procedure necessary to isolate stem cells again. Once established, a cell line can be grown in the laboratory indefinitely and cells may be frozen for storage or distribution to other researchers. Scientists might also be able to replace damaged genes or add new genes to stem cells in order to give them characteristics that can ultimately treat diseases. See our stem cell articles for more information.

What is the difference between Type 1 diabetes and Type 2 diabetes?

Type 1 diabetes is usually due to autoimmune destruction of the pancreatic beta cells. Type 2 diabetes is characterized by insulin resistance in target tissues, this causes a need for abnormally high amounts of insulin and diabetes develops when the beta cells cannot meet this demand. See our article Diabetes Information Type 1 and Type 2 for more information.

What is the difference between ADD and ADHD?

ADD - is Attention Deficit Disorder Inattentive Type without hyperactivity. ADHD - is Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity. Adults are usually classified as ADD due to symptoms of hyperactivity diminishing with age. There are two main types of ADHD - Inattentive and Hyperactive. Visit Autism, ADHD and ADD Information and Facts for more information.

What is the difference between Arthritis, Rheumatism, and Osteoarthritis?

Arthritis - The most common form of arthritis, osteoarthritis occurs following trauma to the joint, following an infection of the joint or as a result of aging.

Osteoarthritis - is usually worse at night or following rest. Rheumatoid arthritis is generally worse in the morning.

Rheumatism - The term rheumatism is no longer frequently used in medical or technical literature. The term covers a range of different problems. See our articles on Arthritis Rheumatism and Osteoarthritis for more information.

What is Hypertension?

High blood pressure is also known as hypertension. Your heart pumps blood around your body through your arteries and into the smaller blood vessels that are called capillaries. The force that your heart pumps blood in your arteries is called your blood pressure. High blood pressure is a risk factor for stroke, kidney disease, heart disease, and dementia. See our articles on High Blood Pressure and Cholesterol for more information.

What is the recommended calories a person should consume a day?

If you're at a desirable body weight and have plenty of energy, your calories in food intake is probaly ok. However if you're gaining weight and feel tired a lot of the time, you may want to consider counting your intake of calories in food and changing your daily diet, because as you ingest extra calories your body will convert the excess energy to body fat. More info on How to Count and Calculate Calories and a handy calorie caculator.

How much should you weigh according to your height?

Even a small weight loss of 10 to 20 pounds can improve your overall general health by lowering your blood pressure and cholesterol levels. You can see an approximate ideal height to weight ratio using our Height to Weight Ratio Chart

Is the Appendix on the right or the left side?

What are the symptoms of Acute Appendicitis? What are the Signs of Appendicitis? What does the appendix look like? These and many other questions regarding the human appendix and appendicitis can be found in our article What is Appendicitis?

Where can I find a list of Neurological Conditions?

Neurology is a branch of medicine dealing with disorders of the nervous system including the brain and spinal cord.

What is the Difference between Vegans and Vegetarians

Vegans are 100% Pure Vegetarians eat only foods that come from plants, like grains, fruits, vegetables, and nuts and they exclude all animal by products from their lifestyle (e.g. meat, eggs, dairy, wool, leather, items that contain animal fats, products tested on animals etc.).

Vegetarianism on the other hand is the practice of living on products of the plant kingdom, with or without the use of eggs and dairy products, but excluding entirely the consumption of any part of the body of an animal as food (including chicken, fish and seafood). More information on vegans and vegetarians

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