Black Enterprise magazine

Recent Articles

What is psoriasis and why should I care about it?

 

Psoriasis is an itchy skin condition that appears as patches and plaques of dry, scaly skin located most commonly on the elbows, knees and scalp. Psoriasis, however, can occur anywhere. Sometimes it can be very mild with just a couple of spots, and in other cases it can be quite severe and widespread. Psoriasis can also make your fingernails and toenails rough and discolored with small pits.  

Why  should I care  about 

psoriasis? Psoriasis is extremely common, and approximately five percent of all people have this skin disease. Continue Reading →

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What is Alzheimer’s disease and why should I care about it?

Alzheimer’s disease — the most common cause of dementia — is a group of brain disorders that cause a loss of intellectual and social skills. “Dementia” is an umbrella term describing multiple diseases and conditions that develop when nerve cells (neurons) in the brain die or are unable to function normally. Continue Reading →

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What is rosacea and why should I care?

Rosacea is a common skin disease that affects 15-25 percent of all people to some degree. It often begins with a tendency to blush or flush more easily than other people. This flushing can develop into a constant redness, or “rosy” complexion. It can also produce an acne-like bumpy, pustular eruption on the face, neck, ears, chest and back. Some term rosacea with bumps “acne rosacea.” The term “rosacea” is not optimal, because in persons of color it appears more copper or violet rather than pink in color. All people can develop rosacea.  

Why should I care about rosacea? Continue Reading →

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Why should I care about heart failure?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By Charles E. Crutchfield III, MD

and Monica Colvin-Adams, MD, MS, FAHA

 

Heart failure is one of the few cardiovascular diseases that continue to increase. Heart failure is a leading cause of death and is strongly linked to high blood pressure.  

 

What is “congestive” heart failure? When your heart is too weak or too stiff to pump blood efficiently, fluid can back up in the lungs and tissues causing congestion. This is often referred to as “congestive heart failure.” This does not always happen during heart failure, and as a result the term “heart failure” is preferred over “congestive heart failure.”

 

What causes heart failure? Heart failure is the syndrome that is created by a heart that is too weak to pump or too stiff to eject blood efficiently. Continue Reading →

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From picky eaters to overeating: childhood nutrition in a nutshell

By Charles E. Crutchfield III, MD and Tamiko Morgan, M.D., FAAP
 

Childhood nutrition has taken the spotlight recently, especially due to the fact that childhood obesity has at least tripled in the past three decades. Many parents are seeking answers to the questions “What should my child eat? How much? Why?”

Although we are currently living in the “information age,” information overload has caused some parents to be confused, making it challenging for them to understand good nutritional recommendations. In this column, we will attempt to summarize some basic recommendations regarding childhood nutrition. Continue Reading →

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Should I take vitamins and other supplements?

Physician recommendations on taking vitamins seem to be constantly changing. Over the past few years, researchers have found that some vitamins thought to be helpful might not be as beneficial as originally believed. In fact, some may even be harmful. In the Iowa Women’s  Health Study, which tracked supplementation habits in women 55 years of age and older for nearly 20 years, research found that taking a multivitamin may increase the risk of premature death. Commonly, people take vitamins for general health or as a way to prevent disease, and on the surface this seems to make a lot of sense. Continue Reading →

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Why should I care about high blood pressure?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By Charles E. Crutchfield III, MD and

J. Michael Gonzalez-Campoy, MD, PhD, FACE

 

High blood pressure may cause damage to vital organs over time. Brain damage causes a stroke. Heart damage causes a heart attack. And kidney damage causes kidney failure. High blood pressure may also damage the eyes and blood vessels, causing weakening of the blood vessel walls. If a blood vessel wall balloons out, this is called an aneurysm.  Aneurysms may break and bleeding can happen.  

What causes high blood pressure? The blood pressure is determined by the amount of squeeze created by the circular smooth muscle of the blood vessels, by the speed at which the heart beats, and by the volume inside the blood vessels made up by the blood. The blood pressure will go up if there is too much squeeze from the blood vessels. It will also go up if there is excess volume in the circulation. And it will go up if the heart is stimulated to beat faster or stronger. Adrenaline, the “fight or flight” hormone, causes the heart to beat faster and the blood vessels to squeeze tighter. Therefore, too much adrenaline, as is the case with stress, can cause the blood pressure to go up. Table salt has sodium. Sodium holds on to water. So, the sodium inside blood vessels will hold on to water. Continue Reading →

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Recognizing and treating Molluscum Contagiosum

What is Molluscum Contagiosum? 

Molluscum Contagiosum is a viral infection that produces small, flesh-colored, dome shaped bumps that can often become irritated or painful. They may appear to have a shiny surface in a small central indentation, or white core.  

Why should I care about Molluscum Contagiosum? Molluscum Contagiosum is a benign condition that will spread through direct skin contact. This contact can be in the patient’s own skin spreading to other areas, or from direct skin-to-skin contact, especially in children. Molluscum Contagiosum can also be transmitted through swimming pools and shower room floors. Continue Reading →

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Why should I care about nail health?

 

 

Nail problems are very common and troubling. Nails often reflect our general state of health and can often be the first sign of serious general health issues.  

Nail facts

Fingernails grow out in four to six months. Toenails grow out in nine to 12 months. Individual rates depend on age, time of the year, activity levels and heredity. Continue Reading →

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Doctor’s Advice for Your Good Health

 

By Charles E. Crutchfield III, M.D.

 

Dr. Crutchfield, what can I do improve the quality of my skin, especially in these dry winter months?  

Great question. Walk into the skin care/cosmetic area of any major department store, and it is dizzying to see the hundreds, if not thousands, of choices for skin care. To complicate matters, there are sales people wearing white coats, looking like either mad scientists or doctors, who are all too eager to recommend their company’s multi-step skin care program. Even in our homes, we are flooded with late-night infomercials touting the latest products that promise to solve your skin-care woes. The good news is, smart skin care can be a simple four-step process: cleansing, hydration, protection and correction.  

1.  Cleansing

Cleansers with either no detergent or a very low detergent value help preserve the natural oils in your skin. You don’t need harsh cleansers or exfoliants; just use a cotton washcloth. Your skin will naturally exfoliate itself. Several good over-the-counter cleansers include Vanicream Cleansing Bar, Cetaphil, and Dove Unscented Cleansing Bar. Everyone’s skin chemistry is different, so experiment until you find a product that works best for your skin type. Continue Reading →

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