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Obstetric Hemorrhage

A medical condition that typically occurs shortly after delivering a baby that is characterized by excessive blood loss in the mother. Although mothers will endure some blood loss during childbirth, this condition results in an abnormal amount of blood lost, with more serious implications.

This condition is called a primary hemorrhage when it occurs within the first 24 hours after childbirth. It is called secondary (or delayed) when it occurs between 24 hours to six weeks after childbirth.

Causes
An obstetric hemorrhage can be caused by a multitude of factors, including giving birth to a large baby, developing a uterine infection, having a bleeding disorder or experiencing some type of birth trauma.

Symptoms
Heavy vaginal bleeding is the primary indicator of this condition, but patients may also have a decreased blood pressure, swelling and pain in the vaginal area and an increased heart rate.

Treatment Procedures
To treat an obstetric hemorrhage, your physician may recommend certain surgical procedures to repair any tears or wounds causing the bleeding, fluids and medication.

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Open Skull Fracture

An open skull fracture is a medical condition where part of the scalp is broken and torn.

Causes
An individual can fracture his or her skull by experiencing direct trauma to the head, such as being in a car accident, enduring a sports injury or by a gunshot.

Symptoms
An open skull fracture is a very serious condition that can result in dangerous and deadly symptoms. An individual may experience increased pressure on the brain, blood in the ears and paralysis of the limbs.

Treatment Procedures
To treat an open skull fracture, emergency help must be called upon immediately. The first step taken by emergency personnel will be to stabilize the neck and spine by strapping the victim to a backboard. Then, he or she will be taken to the hospital where the doctor will decide what surgical procedures are needed, depending on the type and location of the injury. The broken bones may be in need of repair and holes may need to be drilled in the skull to relieve pressure on the brain.

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Operative Wound Dehiscence

A serious medical condition where the layers of a surgical wound begin to open. It can be characterized two different ways: where the surface layers separate or the whole wound splits open.

Causes
A wound can begin to separate after surgery due to numerous factors. Such include developing an infection at the surgical site, the sutures may be too tight, weak muscle tissue at the wound opening or poor closure technique at the time of the surgery.

Symptoms
Victims with operative wound dehiscence may experience an infection at the wound site, bleeding, swelling and broken sutures.

Treatment Procedures
To treat an operative wound dehiscence, a physician may recommend the use of antibiotics and other medications or surgery to remove dead tissue and repair the wound.

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Osteoarthritis

The breakdown of cartilage (the cushion between bones) in the joints. This medical condition is usually followed by chronic inflammation of the joint lining. The joints that are most commonly associated with this condition include the ones in the knee, hip, hands and foot.

Causes
The exact cause of osteoarthritis is unclear to doctors today. However, this condition has been associated with aging in adults.

Symptoms
People with osteoarthritis usually have joint pain, limited movement and rotation of the affected joint as well as weakness of muscles surrounding the affected joint.

Treatment Procedures
Although there is no technique to stop the breakdown of cartilage between bones, there are methods to help reduce the pain resulting from this condition. Such procedures include taking medication, exercising regularly, receiving corticosteroid injections to the inflamed joint and having surgery to re-position bones within a joint.

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Osteoporosis

A condition where bones become weak and brittle, characterized by a decrease in the density of a bone. As a result, the bone becomes porous and compressible.

Causes
Osteoporosis can be caused when more bone is lost more quickly than replaced. This process typically occurs when a person reaches 30 years old, when old bone begins to be lost more rapidly. This condition can also be caused when the mineral content of the bone decreases, causing the bone’s density to weaken. A deficiency in calcium and vitamin D are said to play a part in this degenerative process.

Symptoms
The most common symptom of osteoporosis is a bone fracture, where the bone may crack or collapse under pressure. A bone fracture is typically associated with pain, swelling and numbness to the injured area that may extend to other areas as well. If the fracture is severe, other organs may be injured, characterized by their own set of symptoms.

Treatment Procedures
Although none of the available treatments for osteoporosis can cure the condition completely, certain treatment procedures can help with the prevention of bone fractures by reducing bone loss or by increasing bone density and strength. This is done typically through prescribing an injured person medications that stop bone loss or increase bone formation.

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