Category Archives: Health & Fitness

Woman’s skin melts off due to medications

It is not easy to share your story. Especially when it is a tragic one. People will judge you, and they will look at you differently. But that is exactly what Khaliah Shaw did. She did not want anyone else to fall victim to a troublesome medication that left her scarred for life. She was studying at Georgia when the doctors prescribed her an anti-seizure medication. She was suffering from bipolar disorder and needed the FDA-approved medication known as Lamotrigine. Just weeks after using the medications, 90% of her skin melted and fall off. Her life changed, and she was left with a scar to remind her of her tragedy.

How did everything start?

Khaliah was a public health graduate student at Georgia College. She was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, and the doctors prescribed her the medication. One month after taking the drugs, she developed a rash on her face. Her lips started to peel off. She went to visit the doctor, and she was diagnosed with the flu. However, only two days later, she woke up in excruciating pain. She had skin melting off her body on her neck, on her chest, and on her back. Her mouth was covered in blisters.

She returned to the ER, and she was put into a medically-induced coma. They tried to manage her pain. However, what followed was her skin melted off, she began losing her sight, and her hair fell out. She was diagnosed with Stevens-Johnson Syndrome. That is a rare and potentially fatal disorder. The Stevens-Johnson syndrome is caused by a reaction to a medication. She was given a wrong dosage, so the syndrome hit her. It was a life-changing error that nobody caught. Neither her pharmacist, neither her doctor were able to anticipate what could have happened.

Five weeks later, she woke up from the coma and found out she was breathing from a tracheotomy. She could not see. She lost her hair and her fingernails.

What she does now?

Khaliah was a victim of a drug. The drug that put her in the hospital is the generic form of the drug Lamictal. The drug is approved in the USA by the FDA for a treatment of bipolar disorder and seizures.

Khaliah decided to get her justice at court, suing GlaxoSmithKline for promoting the product without warning about the possible and dangerous side effects. Five years ago, the company had to pay $3 billion in a lawsuit for failure to report side effects and risks of the drug. Khaliah is confident “that did not have to happen”. She believes her tragedy is a result of somebody’s error. She uses her tragic story to share awareness about the Stevens-Johnson syndrome on her blog.

Dangerous Sunscreen Ingredients to Watch For

The summer is here, and that means one thing: sunscreen. But when it comes to sunscreen, there are a lot of hidden challenges. Not all sunscreen products are good for you. While you have to take care of your skin, it is important that you pay attention to the ingredients in sunscreen products. Many of them contain toxic ingredients that can do more harm than good for your skin. And since knowledge is power, let’s take a look at six ingredients that you should watch for.

Oxybenzone

This is the chemical that helps other chemicals penetrate the skin. When exposed to UV rays, oxybenzone can cause an eczema-like reaction to your skin. There have been several studies on oxybenzone, and almost all of them suggest this chemical is harmful.

Octinoxate

This is one of the most commonly found ingredients in sunscreen products. And that is the bad news. This chemical protects the skin from sun-induced again. However, some studies suggest  that the compound actually causes premature aging. The chemical produces free radicals, and we all know how harmful they are to our skin. In addition, octinoxate disrupts the endocrine system.

Retinyl Palmitate

Retinyl palmitate is a form of vitamin A. But the problem is that this compound can speed up the development of skin tumors. The ingredient is used in sunscreen products to improve the performance against UV exposure. However, the compounds break down when exposed to the sun, and the reaction produces free radicals. All of them damage our DNA and speed up the development of malignant cells.

Octocrylene

Another ingredient that was put in sunscreen products for good intentions, but produces bad results. The purpose of octocrylene is to absorb UV rays. However, the problem is that this compound can be absorbed and accumulated in high amounts in the body. As a result, the ingredient produces oxygen radicals that damage the cells, and cause cell mutations.

Paraben Preservatives

Parabens are commonly used in the beauty industry. The problem with parabens is that they can cause allergic reactions. Whether you use a lotion, a cleanser, foundation, or even mascara, you can find some parabens in it. And they make their way into sunscreens as well. Be careful to check the ingredients list for harmful parabens. They can cause hormone disruption and reproductive toxicity.

4 Foot Exercises to Relieve Back Pain

You might think how can my feet be connected with my back? How can you relieve back, knee, and hip pain with just foot exercises? Well, everything in our body is connected, and weak muscles in the feet can cause pain in different areas of our body. Our feet are under enormous pressure each and every single day. They are the ones that help u move around, and hold and carry our body weight. If you are experiencing pain in your knee, lower back, or even your hip, your feet might be the reason why.

Opting for a foot massage every now and then will help you improve the health of your feet. But the most important aspect of taking care of your feet is exercise. Today’s exercises will help your improve the balance of your body, and strengthen your feet so that they can carry your body.

Resisted plantar flexion

We start off with a simple, yet very effective exercise. The resisted plantar flexion targets all muscles in your feet. You’ll need a resistance/exercise band and a chair to perform the exercise. Here is a step by step guide.

  • Sit straight on a chair
  • Extend your left leg in front of you
  • Wrap the resistance band around the foot. Make sure the band covers the toes, and hold it firmly with your hand
  • Point your toes forward, and then press the ball of your foot onto the band. Hold it steady with your hands
  • Flex for five seconds, and then return to the starting position
  • Repeat 10 times, and then switch leg

Ankle Circles

People often forget the ankles are a crucial part of our body. If nothing, just look at athletes. A simple ankle injury can take you away from the court for weeks. Ankles are a crucial part of preventing back and joint pain. Week ankles result in stress throughout your body. For the ankle circles, you do not need any equipment.

  • Lay on your back, and bring your left leg up and over your head
  • Circle your ankle around clockwise. Count to 10
  • Switch directions and then rotate counterclockwise. Count to 10
  • Switch to your right leg and repeat the process

Toe Presses

We had exercises for the base of your feet, for the ankle, and now for the toes. Working out the toes warms up the muscles in your feet, improving blood flow and flexibility. You will need a small ball for this exercise.

  • Start by standing up, and then bend slightly at the knees
  • Place the small ball in front of you
  • Flex your toes, and then use them to grip the ball
  • Hold the ball with your toes for five seconds, and then release
  • Repeat 10 times

Toe Walking

Another exercise for your toes. Ballerinas often perform this exercise to improve their balance. The exercise helps you work out the entire foot, not just the toes.

  • Stand on the tips of your toes. Walk for 10 to 20 seconds
  • Come down, and then rest your toes for 10 seconds
  • Repeat 10 times.