Tuesday, April 6, 2010
Have arthritis? Live near the East coast and deal with crappy weather? Do your joints bother you when the weather's cold and rainy? I like you have heard people claim to be able to tell when a hurricane is coming and swear they can tell the weather better than a meteorologist, maybe some people can but most of them are paying attention to the pain more because they are expecting it to get worse. The research says that in most of their studies Tversky and Redelmeier people tended to see a cause effect relationship where there was none. They did say however that it may be plausible that certain people may be able to tell when bad weather is coming. The cause of this belief in most people is very similar to the popular anecdote about ice cream sales rising and the increase in pregnancies. People tend to imply a causal relationship between the two when there is none. Ice cream sales increased because it was summer which also led to people staying inside due to the heat. Staying in the AC and copulating was the cause of the increased pregnancy rate not people eating ice cream.
Thursday, April 1, 2010
As I sit here on this rainy day with my wife of twenty years, our joints and old scars are aching. I again remind my wife of the fact that according to my young college professor, there is no evidence of any real correlation of the weather to increased aches and pains. We both laugh, and vow to visit Mr. Berg when he is about 60 to see if he has changed his mind. Say what you will, evidence or not, on humid rainy days my scars and joints ache like crazy.
You can't expect too much out of me, I believe in God as well!
As a science, human biometeorology studies the relationship between atmospheric conditions and people. There are of course all sorts of indisputable and obvious connections between weather and health, such as the incidence of sunstroke on hot days or frostbite on cold ones, according to Dennis Driscoll, emeritus professor of atmospheric sciences at Texas A&M and a meteorologist who specializes in human biometeorology. There are also significant but less direct connections between weather and health, such as the onset of allergies during pollen season. In such cases, the atmospheric conditions are clearly affecting health, but they are playing more of a supportive role than a primary one.
But some researchers are interested in looking at less direct potential connections between atmospheric conditions -- like temperature, barometric pressure, and humidity -- and painful conditions such as arthritis, fibromyalgia, and sinus or migraine headaches. The difference here is that the connections are not as obvious and the mechanism that would cause the symptom isn't known.
The suspect most often singled out by arthritis sufferers and researchers is a drop in barometric pressure, which is the pressure exerted by the air around us. A drop in barometric pressure often precedes a storm, and the theory goes that a decrease in the air pressure can cause the tissues around the joints to swell, causing arthritic pain. Proponents of the idea use a balloon in a barometric chamber as a simulator. If the pressure outside drops, the air in the balloon expands. If the same happened in the area around an arthritic joint, the expansion or swelling could irritate the nerves, causing pain. There has been some work that showed a possible connection. Believers typically cite a famous study conducted in Philadelphia in the '60s by researcher John Hollander. In the study, Hollander isolated several patients with rheumatoid arthritis in a sealed chamber and gradually adjusted the atmospheric conditions. He found some evidence that swelling and stiffness increased with a rise in humidity and a drop in barometric pressure.
Several studies at Johns Hopkins Research Center looked for a relationship between weather and arthritis pain in 151 people with osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, or fibromyalgia (a rheumatic disorder that causes joint pain) as well as 32 people without arthritis. All participants lived in Cordoba City, Argentina, which has a warm climate. Participants kept a journal for one year recording the presence and features of any pain, and these daily reports were matched with weather conditions such as temperature, barometric pressure, and relative humidity.
Patients in all three groups experienced more pain on days when the temperature was low, while people in the control group were unaffected by any of the weather conditions. In addition, patients with rheumatoid arthritis were affected by high humidity and high pressure; osteoarthritis patients by high humidity; and those with fibromyalgia by high pressure. However, the associations were not strong enough to allow pain to predict weather, or vice versa.
The other study looked at 154 people (average age 72) who lived in Florida and had osteoarthritis of the neck, hand, shoulder, knee, or foot. Participants reported their arthritis pain scores for up to two years, then researchers matched the scores with the daily temperature, barometric pressure, and precipitation status. No significant associations were found between any of the weather conditions and osteoarthritis pain at any site, except for a slight association between rising barometric pressure and hand pain in women.
Despite the disagreements, almost everyone concurs that the effects of weather on chronic pain conditions is mild at worst and nonexistent at best. Either way, it doesn't matter that much.
Even if you have severe pain associated with the weather, experts recommend that you should be very careful before deciding to follow the folk wisdom and move to a climate that is drier and warmer.
Well , there it is Its all in my head!
It still hurts. See you at 60, Mr. Berg!
By, D Beckert
Thursday, March 18, 2010
Q-Ray is an ionized bracelet that was marketed as a cure for arthritis pain. The Q-Ray uses language that sounds scientific but, the language that the makes of the Q-Ray use is not scientific at all. The makers of Q-Ray use pseudoscience language. As the book points out pseudoscience claims do not undergo peer reviews like real science does. The Q-Ray doesn't use testing or peer reviews, no scientific studies were done to back up the claims that the Q-Ray makes. Q-Ray claims it relieves pain, improves performance, restores energy and improves muscle flexibility. The makers of Q-Ray use testimonials from people who are not authorities in the field which can be very misleading for people and lead them to believe something that is not true. The Q-Ray claims to work by using natural holistic pain relief. The bracelet also claims to balance a person's positive and negative ions. This balance of ions will give give people pain relief.
The problem is Q-Ray doesn't do any of the things that it claims it can do. As the book notes there is no such thing as ionic imbalance of the body. The Q-Ray is pseudoscience and not real scientific at all. Scientific at all. Since making false or misleading claims are against the law. Q-Ray no longer puts false claims on its website, but still uses a lot of pseudoscience language on the website. If it's too good to be true it usually is, which is the case with Q-Ray