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Isabel Healthcare Blog

Mandy Tomlinson

Recent Posts

1 Minute Read -  Aplastic Anemia Differential Diagnosis

Posted by Mandy Tomlinson on Thu, Aug 15, 2019 @ 11:30 AM

Aplastic anemia is a rare life-threatening disorder with hypocellular bone marrow, where the bone marrow cannot make enough new blood cells. This hypocellular bone marrow results in pancytopenia, which is low reticulocyte, granulocyte and platelet counts. We’ve written about pancytopenia before if you’d like to know more about that. Each year between 2-5 people per 1 million are affected by aplastic anemia.  Aplastic anemia occurs most frequently in young adults between 10-25 years old, as well as patients older than 60 years.

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Could I have myeloma? Myeloma and blood cancer symptoms

Posted by Mandy Tomlinson on Thu, Aug 01, 2019 @ 11:39 AM

This blogpost is another instalment of our in-depth look at specific blood cancers. We’ve written an overview of blood cancers, touching on the 3 main types. We have written posts about Hodgkin’s and non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, and leukemia. This week, we’re going into more detail with myeloma, a type of blood cancer inside the bone marrow. We’ll go over the definitions, types, and symptoms of myeloma, as well as helping you know what treatments are available and how to get help if you are concerned.

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1 Minute Read - Disparities in Gynecologic Cancers

Posted by Mandy Tomlinson on Thu, Jul 18, 2019 @ 11:30 AM

The National Cancer Institute defines healthcare disparities as ‘differences in the incidence, prevalence, and mortality of a disease and the related adverse health conditions that exist among specific population groups.’  It has been noted that disparities often exist for gynecologic cancers when considering and diagnosing these conditions. Gynecologic cancer is any cancer that originates in a female’s reproductive organs.  The five types of gynecologic cancers are:

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Women with alopecia month - Could I have alopecia?

Posted by Mandy Tomlinson on Thu, Jul 04, 2019 @ 12:06 PM

Every month we try to highlight a monthly observance and raise awareness for a cause in the medical field. July is women with alopecia month in the US, and we’re giving you the ins and outs of this condition, covering what is known about the types and causes of alopecia.

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1 Minute Read - Dysphagia - Difficulty Swallowing

Posted by Mandy Tomlinson on Thu, Jun 20, 2019 @ 11:30 AM

Dysphagia is the medical term used to describe patients who have difficulty swallowing and is common, especially in the older generation, although it can occur at any age. Each year 1 in 25 adults will experience a swallowing problem in the United States. 

The normal mechanical process of deglutition, or the act of swallowing, transfers a food or liquid bolus which has been ingested and transports it from the mouth to the stomach via the esophagus.  If this process is interrupted via disease or motility issues, then two types of dysphagia can occur.

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Could I have Leukemia? Types, symptoms and treatment of leukemia

Posted by Mandy Tomlinson on Thu, May 30, 2019 @ 12:18 PM

Cancer is the second leading cause of death globally, surpassed only by cardiovascular diseases. What’s more, around 80% of the people who get heart disease are over 65, whereas with cancer overall, that number is reduced to around 50%. This means cancer has probably affected everyone at some point, be that with a diagnosis yourself, or when someone in your life has had cancer. This is why we write about cancer quite a lot on the blog, most recently having done a crash course series on the types of cancer, and the treatments that may be offered to you should you be diagnosed. We aim to demystify and help make sense of as many types of cancer as we can, and today’s blogpost is no different. We’ve written about blood cancer as a whole before, and we have a post on Hodgkin and non-Hodgkin lymphoma, but we have never gone into detail about leukemia, with which around 60,000 people are diagnosed each year in the US alone. In this blogpost we’ll go over the main types of leukemia, the signs and symptoms to look out for, and how the disease is treated.

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Body Image - #bebodykind – Mental Health Awareness Week

Posted by Mandy Tomlinson on Thu, May 16, 2019 @ 11:50 AM

Mental Health Awareness Week in the UK takes place this week and is organized by the Mental Health Foundation. Each year an issue is selected and focused on to raise awareness of how that issue is linked to Mental Health, and to open up conversations around the topic.  This year’s topic is “Body Image – How we think and feel about our bodies.” Body image has a big impact on all our lives and a UK poll released this week by the Mental Health Foundation found that out of 4,500 UK adults:

  • One in 5 adults (20%) felt shame about their body image
  • One in 3 (34%) felt down or low
  • 19% felt disgusted because of their body image in the past year

1,118 UK teenagers (age 13-19) reported that 37% felt upset and 31% felt ashamed with their body image.

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Decoding cancer - treatment options and types of therapy

Posted by Mandy Tomlinson on Thu, May 02, 2019 @ 11:44 AM

This blogpost is part of a 2 week series, helping demystify the world of cancer diagnosis and treatment. We all know cancer is a serious, often life-threatening disease, and that it takes many forms. We’ve also probably heard words like ‘grade II’ and ‘radiotherapy’ when talking about it, but do we really know what these terms mean, and if we were told we had cancer, would we know what was to come? It can be hard to go there and think about the unthinkable, but equipping yourself with this knowledge now could help save your life when discussing your diagnosis and treatment options should you get cancer. Likewise, if you have already had a cancer diagnosis, you may be overwhelmed and unsure of the process from this point, so we’ve created a quick overview of cancer terms. The first blogpost last week discussed the diagnostic process and the grades and stages of cancer that medical professionals use. This week, we’re focussing on the treatment of cancer. As different cancers have different treatment plans, it can get confusing very quickly. However, there is some information that can help in understanding the options being presented to you by your doctor or specialist.

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Decoding cancer - types, stages, and grades

Posted by Mandy Tomlinson on Thu, Apr 25, 2019 @ 11:30 AM

The world of cancer can be extremely scary and hard to think about for many, whether you or a loved one have had cancer or not. There are over 100 cancers and they all have different grading systems and sub-types, meaning that if you do have cancer, you end up with a very long diagnosis that you may not fully understand. Following this there is a long and complicated ongoing process to choose and assess treatment options, some of which you may never have heard of before being diagnosed with cancer. We’ve written about the different types of specific cancers before, from breast cancer to pancreatic cancer and everything in between. Within this, we have touched on the subjects of cancer grades and some treatments. However, we’ve never done a post on the types, treatments, and terminology behind cancer overall, and feel this could be a very helpful resource if you are in the early stages of diagnosis and are not sure what the terms mean, and what is to come in terms of treatment options. This will be a 2-part blogpost series, with today’s post focussing on diagnosis of cancer, and next week’s on treatment. If you don’t have cancer, we still urge you to educate yourself with these quick summarizing blogposts, as you never know when the information may come in useful for you or a loved one, and with our own health, knowledge is power.

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Symptom Information: brain fog - what is brain fog?

Posted by Mandy Tomlinson on Thu, Apr 18, 2019 @ 11:30 AM

Brain fog, also known as mental fatigue, refers to transient periods of cognitive mental dysfunction that affects memory and concentration.  It can be a symptom of a medical condition and can also be related to lifestyle conditions including stress and diet.

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