Monday, December 26, 2011

Port-wine amniotic fluid

Untimely detachment of a normally sited placenta from the uterus before birth of the baby is termed placental abruption or abruptio placenta. This premature placental separation results in decreased supply of nutrients and oxygen to the fetus as well as bleeding at the site of placental separation. Consequently, the fetus may become distressed or if the abruption is severe, fetal death ensues. The mother may develop life threatening shock (decreased oxygen content at the tissue level) because of the bleeding.
The amniotic fluid – bag of waters – can become stained with blood coming from the detached placenta resulting in the amniotic fluid looking like Port-wine – Port-wine amniotic fluid.
Risk factors for placental abruption include using cocaine, alcohol, cigarettes, having hypertension as well as sustaining abdominal trauma during pregnancy.
Norwitz ER, Schorge JO, 2010, Obstetrics and Gynecology at a Glance. 3rd edition. Wiley-Blackwell. page 119. Go to reference


Thursday, December 22, 2011

Omental cake

Ovarian cancer is difficult to discover because victims tend initially to have vague complaints such as feeling bloated, having urinary and bowel troubles.
Invasion of the peritoneum – a double layered membrane - that lines some of the intra-abdominal and pelvic organs by ovarian cancer cells can occur. Widespread peritoneal infiltration by these cancer cells may be seen for example on ultrasound scan and computed tomography images. In appearance, the infiltrated regions look like a cake – omental cake.
The omentum is part of the peritonuem.
Besides ovarian cancer, other cancers and conditions can cause omental cake.
Wang KY, Lee WJ, Lin HJ. Omental cake. Int J Emerg Med, 2010 ;3(4):477-8 Go to reference

Ovarian cancer, peritoneum (red & blue)

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Red currant jelly sputum

Sputum consists of mucus and other material originating from the airways that is expectorated through the mouth.
In pneumonia which is generally defined as lung inflammation, there is a response of the lung(s) to harmful agents such as bacteria, viruses, fungi, parasites and so on.
The non-motile bacterium Klebsiella pneumoniae can result in sputum tinged with blood giving it a look not unlike red currant jelly – red currant jelly sputum.
Underlying conditions such as diabetes mellitus, alcohol misuse, long standing lung disease, etc. predispose to Klebsiella pneumonia.
Clinical manifestations of pneumonia include a cough, feeling lethargic, having a hot body, difficulty breathing, sputum production, chest pain, etc. Treatment for pneumonia usually includes antibiotics.
Johnson AL, Hampson DF, Hampson NB. Sputum color: potential implications for clinical practice. Respir Care, 2008 53(4):450-4. Go to reference

Symptoms of pneumonia, Klebsiella pneumoniae

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Hot potato voice

Tonsils commonly refer to tissues located at the throats’ back that are involved in guarding against infection.
Sometimes, an abscess (which is a collection of pus - composed of dead tissues, foreign material such as bacteria and white blood cells) forms in the space between the tonsil and its capsule resulting in a peritonsillar abscess (quinsy).
In addition to fever, malaise, sore throat, etc patients with a peritonsillar abscess may have a muffled voice which has been said to resemble the voice of someone speaking with a hot potato in their mouth – hot potato voice.
As peritonsillar abscesses are caused by various bacteria (polymicrobial infection) their treatment includes antibiotics and drainage of the abscess.
The hot potato voice can also occur for example with throat tumors and in epiglottitis (inflammation of the epiglottis), which is a tissue flap found in the throat that helps prevent food and drink go into the airways.
Galioto NJ. Peritonsillar abscess. Am Fam Physician. 2008, 15;77(2):199-202.  Go to reference

Tonsils, right quinsy (peritonsillar abscess)