Medicine

The trouble with mucus

A thin, slippery watery substance is produced on the surfaces of various important organs of the body to keep them moist and protected from drying and predominantly keep infections at bay. This is true for lungs, pancreas, liver, intestines, sinuses etc. But there is a certain disease that can hurt this balance leading to excessive production of mucus and that can make life miserable; it is Cystic Fibrosis. Cystic Fibrosis, a genetic disease, shows itself up if both the parents have the gene.

The parents may just be carriers free of the disease ; this is transferred to the child and causes disease. It is known as an incurable condition and with lifestyle changes and increased life-spans the number of patients suffering from the disease has gone up. This gene causes an increased mucus production in the lining of the lung tissues and it comes in the way of the healthy exchange of gases in the level of the alveoli or the functional units. This can gradually lead to respiratory difficulties and what's worse, it can cause failure of the portions of the lung tissue while infective organisms are just waiting for this opportunity to gain and multiply. More often than not, under the given circumstances, it is the stubborn bacteria like Pseudomonas which gain ground.

The empty spaces around the nasal cavity, called the sinuses, get affected and there is an accumulation leading to the condition of sinusitis; the fungal infection that ensues only precipitates the formation of nasal polyps. When it comes to the digestive system, it is the pancreas which is in the line of fire. The pancreatic juices which are so crucial for the digestive mechanism to go through are not allowed to gain through into the ileum and only cause indifference to the process.

The patient does not gain nutrition as it is not properly assimilated, and that makes his immunity that much more susceptible. If the liver is affected, the functional tissue is prone to sluggishness. The fallopian tubes in a woman can get blocked with the mucus collection leading to infertility and so too in men when the vas deferens in men which carries the sperm from the testes is blocked leading to the same issue. Another issue with this condition of Cystic Fibrosis is that it leads to a salty sweat or wherein there is an excessive loss of minerals and salts in the perspiration. This can lead to dehydration over a period of time and thereby fatigue, decreased blood pressure and heat stroke can ensue.

To attempt to remove the excessive accumulation of mucus and balancing the electrolytes with sufficient supplementation would help. Though supposedly an incurable disease it can well be helped with homoeopathic medicine. These remedies can help in loosening and removing the thick mucus from the lungs with Antim tart, Pilocarpus etc. Treating blockage of the intestines can be done with remedies like Chelidonium, Cardus mar, Pulsatilla, Lycopodium etc. Even as sufficient nutrition is being provided there are good remedies which can help in assimilation of salts and minerals like Kali mur, Natrum mur, Kali phos etc. while remedies like Ars alb, Phos, Thuja help in keeping away the infective agents with the help of an agile immune system. There are certain deep acting remedies that can also help in seeing that mucus production is reasonably controlled so that the condition can be kept in check for as a long as possible.

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Printable version | Mar 6, 2021 11:40:21 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/health/medicine-and-research/the-trouble-with-mucus/article2487011.ece

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