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Introduction To Beriberi

Beriberi is a disease which is caused due to nutrition deficiency. This disease is caused due to the absence of vitamin B1 in the human body. Humans obtain a vital nutrient named thiamine through their diet. It is also known as Thiamine deficiency disorder. In the body, thiamine does not take long to drain which is one of the reasons which makes BeriBeri a dangerous disease. If this disease is taken lightly and left untreated, then it can be a life-threatening nutritional deficiency disease. Women with intense nausea, pregnant women, and people who are suffering from Aids have a high risk of getting affected due to this disease. 

Types Of Beriberi

There are two types of Beriberi disease.

  • Wet beriberi 

  • Dry beriberi

Wet beriberi- In general, the heart gets affected due to this kind of disorder. It also affects other organs of the circulatory system. If it is taken casually, it can lead to heart attack and also can cause some heart disorders which are considered to be extremely harmful to health. Cardiomegaly and cardiomyopathy are responsible for characterizing this disease as wet beriberi.

Dry beriberi- The function of the nerves of the nervous system is affected due to this disorder. The strength of muscle is also decreased and it can also lead to paralysis. Neuropathy is responsible for characterizing this disease as Dry beriberi. 

Causes Of Beriberi

The deficiency of vitamin-B1 causes rare disease beriberi. Recent research says that this disease is found to be very rare because these days all the various sources of food are found to be enriched with vitamins.

People, who are highly addicted to alcohol, can suffer from poor nutrition. If the body fails to absorb Vitamin B1 then it can also lead to body weakness.

In some cases, it is considered a genetic disorder. It happens if the body of the mother lacks vitamin- B1, then it can be transmitted to the body of the new-born while breastfeeding. Due to this young babies are also to suffer from this disease.

People, who are going through dialysis, may also suffer from this disease.

On the other hand, the risk of this disease is so high for those who are having heavy doses of water pills.  

Symptoms Of Beriberi

The symptoms are different in two different types of beriberi. 

  1. Symptoms of Dry BeriBeri

  • Pain and tingling are felt in this disease. 

  • People can suffer from vomiting. 

  • One can find difficulty in walking as it makes the body weak. 

  • Strange movements of eyes can also be noticed. 

  • People may face difficulty in speaking.

  • People start losing sensation in feet and hands because their muscles stop functioning. This is considered a sign of paralysis.

  1. Symptoms of Wet BeriBeri

  • In this heart rate increases rapidly.

  • Lower legs start swelling in this kind of disease.

  • Weakness increases with activity, it causes breathing problems.

  • Insomnia also can be a symptom of this disease.

Acute or chronic GBS can be mimicked by signs and symptoms of beriberi. Thiamine deficiency should be considered in malnourished patients who have signs and symptoms of GBS as per the clinicians. 

Diagnosis Of Beriberi

There are many ways to determine and detect this disease. The series of medical tests and physical examinations to detect beriberi is stated by various medical professionals.

  • Testing breathing and lungs problem. 

  • To check the levels of thiamine in blood cells

  • Urine and blood tests are also performed to detect this disease.

  • The lower legs are examined to detect if there is any kind of swelling or not.

  • Examination or tests are also conducted for checking variation in a heartbeat and the enlargement of the heart.

  • Differences in walking decreased reflexes and problems of coordination are also checked. 

Treatment Of Beriberi

This disease requires natural treatment. The person, who has a deficiency of Vitamin B1, should consume the food which is rich in this vitamin B1. It will raise the level of vitamin in the blood cells. Patients suffering from this disease should not consume alcohol at all. The level of thiamine should also be normalized.  The administration also accomplishes oral or injectable supplements for the treatment of this disease.

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FAQs on Beriberi

1. What Is The Prevention Of This Disease?

A healthy and balanced diet is the most important thing for the prevention of this disease. Having the foods which are rich in Vitamin- B1 can lower the chances of developing beriberi. There are some vegetables which should be cereals, beans, eggs, a product of milk, fish, meat, seeds, certain vegetables, whole grains, beet, green vegetables, etc. To prevent it one needs to consume food containing thiamine. Limiting alcohol consumption is also included as one of the preventive measures. On the other hand, vitamin tablets can be taken as a supplement. All these preventive measures should be taken to prevent the disease.

2. State A Potential Complication Of Beriberi.

Beriberi can lead to some serious complications if this disease is not treated properly. It is considered as life-threatening in most of the cases. It can be prevented if it is treated in a relevant manner. The symptoms may get worse if the treatment is not performed at the early stage of this disease. If one thinks that he/she is suffering from beriberi then he/she should consult a doctor to decrease the risk of this disease. There are some major complications of beriberi such as losing mobility, failure of heart, chronic pain, psychotic phase, etc.