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Diseases & Conditions

Easy-to-understand answers about diseases and conditions

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  • Factor V Leiden

    Factor V Leiden is a genetic mutation affecting one of the clotting factors in the blood. This mutation may raise the possibility of developing abnormal blood clots, which typically occur in the legs or lungs. However, most individuals with factor V Leiden never experience abnormal clots. Nonetheless, those who do may face long-term health issues or life-threatening situations. Factor V Leiden can affect both men and women. Women who carry this mutation may have a greater chance of developing blood clots during pregnancy or when taking estrogen hormone. If you have this mutation and have experienced blood clots, anticoagulant medications can reduce the risk of developing further blood clots and help prevent serious complications.

  • Familial adenomatous polyposis

    Familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP) is a rare inherited condition resulting from a gene defect in the adenomatous polyposis coli (APC) gene. For most people, the gene is inherited from a parent. However, the genetic mutation occurs spontaneously for 25-30% of individuals. FAP leads to extra tissue (polyps) in the colon and rectum. These polyps can also appear in the upper gastrointestinal tract, particularly in the duodenum. If left untreated, the colon and rectum polyps will likely become cancerous in one’s 40s. Most people with FAP eventually require surgery to remove the large intestine to prevent cancer. Although the duodenum polyps can also develop cancer, regular monitoring and removal of the polyps usually manage them. Attenuated familial adenomatous polyposis (AFAP) is a milder form of FAP. People with AFAP usually have fewer colon polyps (an average of 30) and develop cancer later in life.

  • Factitious disorder

    Factitious disorder is a significant mental condition characterized by deliberate deception, where an individual feigns illness, induces sickness intentionally, or inflicts self-injury. This disorder can also manifest when caregivers or family members falsely portray others, such as children, as being unwell, injured, or impaired. Symptoms of factitious disorder range from mild, involving slight symptom exaggeration, to severe, previously known as Munchausen syndrome. Individuals may fabricate symptoms or manipulate medical tests to convince others of the necessity for intensive interventions, such as high-risk surgeries. It is important to note that factitious disorder differs from feigning medical issues for practical advantages, like evading work or pursuing legal claims. Although those with factitious disorder acknowledge their role in causing symptoms, they might lack insight into their motivations or even realize the existence of their problem. Recognizing factitious disorder proves intricate, and its management is challenging. Nonetheless, both medical and psychiatric intervention are crucial to prevent severe harm and potential fatalities, often stemming from the self-inflicted injuries characteristic of this condition.