Ask the doc­tor

The Citizen (KZN) - - City -

Dear Doc­tor,

What is the dif­fer­ence be­tween mus­cle swelling and arthri­tis?

Arthri­tis is a joint disease. It can be due ei­ther to in­flam­ma­tion or de­gen­er­a­tion. The com­mon in­flam­ma­tory ones are rheuma­toid arthri­tis, gout, in­fec­tive arthri­tis etc. The de­gen­er­a­tive ones can be due to overuse or joint ab­nor­mal­i­ties caus­ing fric­tion. Mus­cle swelling is just that, swelling of the mus­cles. It might not be re­lated at all to the joint. Please see your doc­tor to make a de­fin­i­tive di­ag­no­sis.

Dear Doc­tor,

Can you cure ten­donitis?

It de­pends on the cause, and whether it is acute or chronic. Im­me­di­ate in­flam­ma­tion of the ten­dons can be man­aged by rest, ic­ing the af­fected area, com­press­ing it and el­e­vat­ing. In some cases anti-in­flam­ma­tory med­i­ca­tion would be in­di­cated. For more long-term cases, there is a big role that phys­io­ther­apy plays to heal and re­ha­bil­i­tate.

Dear Doc­tor,

Can head lice be spread by shar­ing hats?

Yes. Lice are spread by con­tact. Can be from phys­i­cally touch­ing the per­son who has them, or by shar­ing hats, tow­els, sheets etc. If some­one in your house­hold has lice, please make sure to thor­oughly wash and dis­in­fect ev­ery­thing.

SMS ‘HEALTH’ to 32212 with your ques­tion (cost is R1 per SMS) or e-mail ques­tions to [email protected]­i­

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