Stories about treatment

Beware, antibiotics are not the answer to every disease

A few days back, I called a friend and found out that she was suffering from a sore throat, yet again. Being a pharmacist, people talk to me quite frequently about the medicines they have been taking. This particular friend was tackling her sore throat with Amoxicillin and had disregarded the need for a prescription. Recently, however, she complained to me that Amoxicillin doesn’t work for her anymore. The truth is that she is not the only one. Most people don’t understand the dreadful consequences of misusing antibiotics. A sore throat, runny nose and fever are all inevitable gifts of the winter season ...

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Don’t forget our police jawans, they are the real heroes!

I would like to thank everyone for spreading and sharing the word about Ibtihaj when he visited Karachi for his treatment. He was a little boy who ended up being a victim of terrorism. He smiled through his pain and misery and gave us hope. We rallied up behind him and celebrated him as a hero and rightfully so. However, there is a group of men in Pakistan who, by their very job description, fill in the category of heroes but they don’t get the adoration, love and respect. In these times, when we are at war or at least living in ...

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Borderline Personality Disorder: ‘‘Every time I get angry or sad, I cut myself with a blade’’

‘‘Every time I get angry or sad I cut myself with a blade. The pain and sight of blood helps me to calm down.’’ A 20-year-old patent told me this in a psychiatric emergency room while showing me her forearm which had multiple superficial cuts. “Every time I feel numb from stress or emotional pain, I cut or burn myself. It’s not with the intent to die but it gives me certain pleasure.” She kept explaining it to me without any emotion on her face. “Life is like walking on egg shells for me, I mess up at every level. I have severe ...

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Five effective ways to rid you of your dandruff problem

Our skin constantly sheds dead cells without us even knowing. Usually these cells are not visible to us, as they are very minute. However, there are some dead cells which are annoyingly visible and we see them in the form of dandruff. As you know, dandruff is the shedding of dead skin cells from the scalp at an excessively fast rate. Many of us have faced issues with regards to this natural nuisance. So, how can one effectively eradicate dandruff? Here are a few tips: Getting the right shampoo Just because Kareena Kapoor endorses a particular brand, does not mean that shampoo will ...

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My visit to Aga Khan Hospital’s cancer ward

“The cells found are malignant and you are likely to have cancer.” On a visit to Aga Khan University Hospital (AKUH), a 43-year-old woman suffering from lymphoma cancer, told me that her first thoughts upon hearing these words were about chemotherapy. This was not surprising. Most cancer patients fear chemotherapy more than the disease itself. In fact, cancer patients absolutely dread the days scheduled for their chemo sessions. Chemotherapy and the will to survive The simplest and crudest definition of chemotherapy is poisoning an individual’s body with drugs that wipe out the malignant cancer cells while simultaneously re-producing healthy cells in the procedure. The ...

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Living with terrorism and the five stages of grief

The most dreaded words ever to be uttered by a physician are perhaps, “You have cancer.” These three words often mean the death sentence for many; the beginning of the end. Although every physician tries to make this announcement in the most compassionate way, it is also important not to confuse the patient by giving them false hope. This is because the initial step towards the long and arduous road to recovery is first recognizing the severity and nature of the disease. Only after that can possible treatment options be discussed including their risks, benefits and approximate rates of cure. Although it ...

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Bombs, rape and death: Are we suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder?

Mood and anxiety disorders are prevalent all over the world and they exist in different types and forms. Post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is an anxiety disorder that stems from traumatic or life threatening experiences encountered by an individual. The events experienced may vary, from natural disasters and severe automobile accidents to violent personal assaults, life-threatening situations and wars. The individual initially responds with intense fear, hopelessness and horror and later develops symptoms which are visible when her or she revisits the event through perception or conversation. Patients who suffer from PTSD also have trouble sleeping. These patients have a lot of anxiety, ...

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Soldiers of life

I was at work when my sister broke the news that my aunt had been diagnosed with lung cancer. This news left my entire family in shock. We decided to meet immediately to fast and pray together for her health. That day, we felt the amazing grace of God and His presence in our lives as each and every member of the family bowed down in prayer for my aunt. As the days passed, I visited her regularly and talked to her for hours. These frequent visits have brought us closer and I now realise that I had never given her ...

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Video blog: Are you afraid of dengue?

The dengue virus scare has taken top become priority for many across Punjab. With constant warnings to take precautions  across the media there has been widespread panic and people – even those with a mild fever believe they have contracted the dreaded dengue fever. This video features interviews with doctors, patients and pharmacists to get a few facts on the virus. In the video an expert describes dengue as a Flvivirus, which has six antigens. He states that currently, there are 4 antigens in Pakistan, and  a vaccination is not present yet as this virus has too many types.  He goes on ...

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Yank-bashing over a cup of tea

Our pancakes had just arrived when we heard a loud: “Who do you think you are, you bloody CIA agent?” This was followed by a chuckle in a male voice and an accented: “What makes you think I am CIA? How can you even be sure I’m an American?” What followed was a ten-minute long loud rant, in the first hoarse female voice, complete with expletive ridden language and name calling. My mother instantly guessed it was Dr Shireen Mazari. “Who the f*** do you think you are? How can you treat a Pakistani this way? Get this man out of this restaurant or I ...

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