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ARE YOU SURE YOU ARE NOT FRYING YOUR KIDNEYS?

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By Ovundah Nyeche. 

He was referred to my hospital due to a long standing generalized body weakness and they also noticed he was passing coke-coloured urine as well. Indeed he was very weak and pale, a thirthy year old male and a graduate of a Nigerian university.

After interviewing and examining him; He admitted that He usually consumed herbal-based products and he was a habitual drinker. His pulse was racing and his heart was failing.

Over the next few days he had several blood transfusions and our fears were confirmed when our investigations showed that his kidneys had failed and he would require regular sessions of dialysis or have a renal transplant done to improve the quality of his life and increase life expectancy.

He is one of a number of young people with failed kidneys attended to last year, almost all of which was as a result of ingestion of herbal based products and supplements with spurious claims.

For the past few weeks, I have had several encounters with practitioners of Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) ; they seem to be everywhere, even more in number than ants feasting on an open sugar container.

Just last week in Port Harcourt Nigeria, while getting some auto spare parts, they were advertising products which they claim flushes out candidiasis from the system; they even said that every discharge from the breast of a lady not pregnant was caused by the organism ‘candida’ and two sachets of this product will flush this organism out. They blamed candida for causing infertility in men and women. To further stamp on the authenticity of their product they dictated its NAFDAC number

Your’s truly if I did not know better, I would have have rushed to join the queue that had just assembled ; at the boot of their bus hung all kinds of scary pictures and all manner of packaged drug products, while one of the ‘trado guy’ was consulting, another was dispensing their products to their patients.. Sorry customers.

Well, they were thinking out of the box; at least they were giving it to another microorganism, after blaming ‘staphylococcus aureus’, ‘staph’ to death.

Just the other day while waiting to collect a consignment from someone, I was approached by two well-dressed young men who told me they had a wellness product to advertise to me.This product according to them could improve the blood sugar, blood pressure, improve libido, cause a long lasting and sustained erection
and had no side effects . I gave them a stern look after their talk, they were shocked I was not interested, I was more shocked people were bringing out their money to buy this product.

They are everywhere on TV ,radio and even on social media marketing products that at the long run causes more harm than good.

Many people use herbal products for the treatment of a wide range of diseases due to the claims of their efficacies by the manufacturers. However, there is little insight as to how they really work, no clear statement of content or medically related information on the package labels, their side effects and their interactions with food and other drugs.

5 years ago some researchers from the Department of Biochemistry, College of Medicine, University of Lagos while experimenting on the safety of some popular herbal products indicated that herbal remedies such as ‘agyanom mixture’, ‘bolex bitters’ and ‘remedia mixture’ have adverse effects on the kidney and they might not be safe for human consumption.

Robert Heyka, MD, of Cleveland Clinic’s Department of Nephrology & Hypertension notes that certain herbs or nutritional supplements have been associated with kidney injury, even among healthy people. With such a wide variety of supplements available, the best way to get advice about a particular supplement is to ask your doctor to review all the ingredients to be sure it’s safe to use.

The US based National Kidney Foundation recently stated that some herbal supplements have aristolochic acid, which is harmful to kidneys and also that there are few studies to show if herbal supplements have real benefits and even less information in patients with kidney disease.

 

It is important to also know that Herbal supplements may interact with prescription medicines to either decrease or increase how the medicine works.

Most people with kidney disease don’t have any symptoms until they’re very sick, little wonder it is called a silent disease. Don’t be in a hurry to take medications you know nothing about; don’t be so reckless as to commit your life to people that don’t know better; don’t assume a drug is safe because you cited a NAFDAC number inscribed on the packet, don’t convert your body to a teapot of concoction all in the name of over zealous use of supplements.

Your kidneys and indeed your life is at stake.

DISCLAIMER

Any similarity with persons in the above story and any other person living, dead or in between is surely a coincidence.

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28 Comments

28 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Akanimoh

    August 26, 2017 at 6:20 am

    It is very interesting to be contributing to the body of knowledge. God bless you Sir OVD

    • Avatar

      Ovundah

      August 27, 2017 at 5:46 am

      Thank you Akanimoh, the least we can do is to correctly educate our people.

  2. Avatar

    Mama Dee

    August 26, 2017 at 6:23 am

    Great write up. I hope abusers of kidney will see this. Renal failure is indeed a theif of good life and thankfully this particular cause can be prevented.
    Keep up the good work sir.

    • Avatar

      Ovundah

      August 27, 2017 at 5:46 am

      Thank you so much Ma.

  3. Avatar

    Chidi

    August 26, 2017 at 6:32 am

    I really don’t understand how such products could still have NAFDAC numbers without any scientific research done on the herbs. I wonder how this will continue under the watch of the Medical council, Medical association and NAFDAC. Absolutely nothing is being done about it, but trust them to say “they’re on top the issue”, while people’s kidneys keep frying away!
    There should be an inquiry into this, and a taskforce throwing all those hazardous materials into flames, after they must have been scientifically condemned

    • Avatar

      Ovundah

      August 27, 2017 at 5:47 am

      It is sad, hence the need for aggressive public enlightenment.

  4. Avatar

    Lois

    August 26, 2017 at 6:54 am

    When you tell people herbal concoctions fry their kidneys, they tell you how your practice of Medicine does not negate all “our forefathers” took to get better .
    We need to sound it deeper into their ears! Going to the bush to get and drink a few herbs is SOMEHOW even better than the bottled ones peddled commercially. They put in all sought of things(plus almost 100 % alcohol!), to get people hooked to their products. Herbs plus constant alcohol equals quadruple damage.

    • Avatar

      Lois

      August 26, 2017 at 6:58 am

      *all sorts of things*

    • Avatar

      Ovundah

      August 27, 2017 at 5:49 am

      Thank you for your comment Lois, and thank you for being a regular follower and commentator @ ovundahnyeche.com

  5. Avatar

    Kennedy Eze

    August 26, 2017 at 7:27 am

    Very sad.
    The government spend their energy where they are not while allowing these killers to infiltrate all comers of Nigeria.
    Surprisingly even among educated men and women patronises them.
    When they come to hospital they will tell u that “they just came to try…. If them no see quick result that they will dive trado.”

    • Avatar

      Ovundah

      August 27, 2017 at 5:49 am

      Our hospitals now look like places for last resort…

  6. Avatar

    mama tiwa

    August 26, 2017 at 8:07 am

    The doctor is the last measure of resort.I heard of a relative who because of infertility resorted to taking herbal medications for her womb.Apparently,her kidneys got damaged and then she passed.Ignorance is the main reason why people take herbal medications to cure everything.

    • Avatar

      Ovundah

      August 26, 2017 at 8:10 am

      The doctor should actually be the first point of call when anyone has any medical challenge. Ironically it is when options are few that people see last, who they should have seen first.

  7. Avatar

    Graham Elendu

    August 26, 2017 at 8:12 am

    Well written Dr, I hope we learn #useftinkam#

    • Avatar

      Ovundah

      August 27, 2017 at 5:50 am

      Thank you Sir,for reading and commenting.

  8. Avatar

    Darlo

    August 26, 2017 at 8:15 am

    Here comes the regular question again. Where are the different regulatory bodies in this country??
    Just last week I attended to a patient with life threatening complication of dental abcess ( ludwigs Angina) after using a herbal mouthwash for 1month!

    Thanks to Dr OVD and his likes for educating the public. However we need great willingness and commitment from the part of government to curb this menace!

  9. Avatar

    Tonye Obene

    August 26, 2017 at 8:40 am

    Great!

    • Avatar

      Ovundah

      August 27, 2017 at 5:52 am

      Thank you sir

  10. Avatar

    Obinna Ebirim

    August 26, 2017 at 8:55 am

    Nice piece.

    • Avatar

      Ovundah

      August 27, 2017 at 5:53 am

      Thank you Sir, shout it out from the hilltop.

  11. Avatar

    Igbanam N-Jay Oke

    August 26, 2017 at 10:46 am

    Nice read

    Unfortunately they are everywhere (buses, roadside with very loud speakers). And have mastered the Art of Marketing.

    The Government of the day needs to make laws to checkmate this practices.

    • Avatar

      Ovundah

      August 27, 2017 at 5:55 am

      Thank you so much Sir, I don’t think the laws are lacking but the enforcement. We also need to aggressively educate the masses…spread the news.

  12. Avatar

    Fortune

    August 26, 2017 at 1:16 pm

    Truth be told, these people are not ghosts, on major and minor streets in cities you see them either in a cab hawking or in a rented shop with loud speakers selling these herbal products… Have we no enforcement or regulatory agencies anymore to clamp down on them and do the needful..??
    Some of us even with warnings over the media play the IGNORAMUS to these warnings by patronizing them.. We need to do more on educating the public individually and collectively to see that people understand the dangers they expose themselves to in consuming these products. Thanks OVD for taking the time to educate us more with this post, more grace Bro..

    • Avatar

      Ovundah

      August 27, 2017 at 5:57 am

      Wise words Sir, nothing more to add.

  13. Avatar

    Pst. Sam

    August 26, 2017 at 8:01 pm

    Very enlightening as usual.
    So sad dat our government is doing nothing about this. But must importantly the medical Institution needs to come out strongly against this.
    Thanks Doc,.

  14. Avatar

    Ovundah

    August 27, 2017 at 5:57 am

    Thank you so much Sir, we will keep doing our best.

  15. Avatar

    Ij

    August 29, 2017 at 10:16 am

    I completely agree with you @ Kennedy.
    Patronage of these products isn’t limited to the so called “illiterates”.
    I was shocked to my bones when once,while in a salon making my hair,a good looking,educated woman brought our mint notes (thousands of naira)to buy a herbal product that was advertised to her by a lady who just walked into the salon.
    I had to pinch myself several times to stop myself from screaming @ the woman and warning her about the consequences her action…….
    It’s really sad,but with posts like this, the message will go viral!
    Well done boss….?

    • Avatar

      Ovundah

      September 8, 2017 at 10:32 am

      Thank you Ma

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Healthy Living

Living Test Tubes…

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By Ovundah Nyeche.

And so one day I was seated with a patient, who came for a particular complaint…

And boom the  discussion turned to fibroids…

And boom I hear…

I am taking a herbal remedy for my fibroids…

And here was I sweating…

Madam, do you know what the herbal remedy you are taking contains? Nooooooooooo!

Madam, can you explain to me what fibroids are? The look changed to “if I had the chance, I will beat”… You can you explain to me what strength of material is? or explain to me the theory of relativity?…

Okay Madam, please do not be annoyed, “na play I dey play”…

Okay, jokes apart,  how does this herbal remedy work? Erm how am I supposed to know?

Madam, you know you are on other drugs, does this herbal remedy interact with other drugs you are taking?  And there was this “come young man you better behave yourself”… Well you know that look…

Erm Madam lest I forget, what are the side effects of this herbal remedy? “Haba” Doctor… These drugs are organic and have no side effect whatsoever…

Madam is beans you eat not organic? Shebi it has side effects… Which can range from firing, rumbling, peppering to praaaaaaaaa…

You say your medicine does not have any side effects at all? Yes oh…

Ironically, if a real doctor tells this patient anything, the patient will likely Google it… But when a wannabe is playing with the patient’s  life…They will likely look the other way…

Don’t kill yourself for nothing…

#hearword #OvdSpeaks #hearwordseries

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Features

Apologies My Dear Melanin Umbrella.

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By Belema Omuso Abbey.
I need to say I am sorry dear melanin. Can you ever forgive me? Can I ever undo this wrong? Is there a way I can make this better? How come I was never told I despised you with my actions. I was unknowingly telling you to get lost, literally!!! How come my brain never actually registered the counselling and all the caution I heard? Repeatedly heard.
A deep groan escaped Fabby’s lips as she clutched at her head, sobbing quietly. Then, she pressed send, delivering her message. She got up from the toilet seat and stood in front of the bathroom mirror. She looked at her once “glowing, very fair” skin, scattered in patches of red, black and yellow discoloration. Her skin was shriveled, she could see very tiny and large blue-green veins literally making a map all over her skin. It is a map indeed.
Her doctor says it shows the way the superficial blood vessels course through her body. Her left arm had a long scar, a lasting memory of the surgery she had 4 weeks earlier. The wound took 4 weeks to heal. Dr Regina said it was because her skin has lost all its protective, healing and regenerative functions. Fabby listened as her husband opened the door for the team comprising of doctors and nurses. Her husband called out to her, she is needed he said.
You see, she begins chemotherapy today for melanoma, a skin cancer. That was the outcome of the surgery on her left arm. Melanin stood rigidly against Dr Tan’s consulting room walls. Fabby’s message overwhelmed him as her words echoed all around him. He remembered reading Dr Regina’s notes a few months ago. “Mrs Fabby Dema, a 38 year old female, manager at a bank, who presented with an ulcer on the left arm. She was said to have previously developed an itchy black spot (before the ulcer started) that bled occasionally. She had been using over the counter whitening creams and soaps for 10 years, including a whitening cream following which she would pluck and pull out her skin after a few hours, revealing supposedly new skin. She is married, has just gotten to the peak of her career, her 3 kids are in secondary school. She does not smoke nor take alcohol.”
An angry loud thump drew melanin’s attention back to Dr Tan’s consulting room. It was the angry female patient. She is quite furious because Dr Tan is insisting that she has developed an addiction to steroid creams as she refused to stop applying them 5 months ago. He had prescribed it for an acute flare of her eczema but was surprised to see her much lighter in complexion during the clinic visit. She explained that the steroid cream made her skin fairer and more beautiful. She stomped out of the consulting room as the young dermatologist refused to prescribe some more for her. Melanin pitied Dr Tan. He had particularly had a bad day at the dermatology clinic.
He reminisced about his previous patients. He wondered whether he was complicit in 45 year old Mrs Owuna’s addiction to hydroquinone. He had prepped her skin for a chemical peel with 2% hydroquinone after counselling her on the benefits of the controlled procedure. Following sessions of chemical peels with glycolic acid, he withdrew hydroquinone, placing her on sunscreen.
Despite pre procedure counselling, Mrs A has refused to go off hydroquinone. Today, she informed Dr Tan that her 23 year old daughter’s skin is doing very well with a hydroquinone cream. Dr Tan felt some warmth on his shoulders as Melanin wrapped his arm around him. “No” Melanin said, the patient chose to continue the use of hydroquinone, you did not. He thought of Ms A. Ms A’s ebony skinned friend had accompanied her to her follow up clinic visit today. She needed to consult Dr Tan for a cream that could get her fair. Her group of friends had all started using naturally mixed soap and cream that made their skin luminous. She was rightly worried about the contents of those products, so she came to consult Dr Tan for safer options.
Melanin then screamed through the doctor. “Do not be tempted madam”. Do you know what the different shades of “black” you see on different skin do for us? It protects us from the damaging effects of the ultraviolet rays of the sun. It actually forms an umbrella shield around our skin’s DNA preventing damage and leading to skin cancer. It helps us not to photo age as fast as the white race. Ever heard of the phrase “black don’t crack”?
Bleaching agents with toxic contents like mercury and hydroquinone can give you kidney failure, steroids can cause growth retardation in children and cause a disease called Cushing’s disease. In the long run, when compared to your peers, your skin will look older, is prone to rashes, prone to skin infections, looks more wrinkled, does not heal properly and looks transparent. “I am Melanin, I live in your skin, I protect you, please do not hurt me” the doctor heard himself plead loudly. Those words sliced through Fabby as she dropped the cup of cream. 

 

You see, she is now in remission, her skin cancer treatment had resulted in a very good prognosis. Fabby was about applying whitening/bleaching cream because she noticed her ankles and knuckles look really dark she needed to even up the complexion one more time. Just one more week of use she thought, then I am done with toning my skin forever. So she planned, until melanin replied her long forgotten message.

Belema Omuso Abbey is a consultant dermatologist and physician of the West African College of Physicians. She trained at the University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital and The University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital Ituku-Ozalla, Enugu state. She is presently into private practise. She loves to dance, read and allow her imaginations run wild.
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Healthy Living

Ticktock says the breast…

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By Ovundah Nyeche.

In medicine, time is everything…

And many times the difference between life and death is time…and not necessarily money…

Husbands please do a lot of night watch and EFCC on your wife’s breasts…

Ladies be vigilant about your breasts…

Don’t dismiss casually…

Breast pain…

Nipple deviation…

Sunken Nipple…

Dimple on the breast…

Skin changes on the breast…

Swelling on the breast…

Wound on the breasts… ( leave village people, bluetooth and staphylococcus alone)…

Strange Nipple discharge…

Swelling under your armpits…

Please see a doctor urgently… As in immediately with all alacrity…

TIME is EVERYTHING…

And breast cancer is beatable many times, if fought on time…

Many times when caught late… Even your money… may mean nothing…

Do not just play with your breast… Watch and take care of it…

Do not just flaunt it… Inspect it…

And present to a doctor once you notice any foul play…

You are needed…

Your life matter…

Ladies your life matter…

#hearword #OvdSpeaks #hearwordseries #Ovdiasis

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