Browse Conditions A-Z



Sciatica is a fairly common back condition. It manifests as a pain that stems from the lower back and radiates in the buttocks down the back of the leg and occasionally down as far as the toes, through the sciatic nerve system.

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Scoliosis is a disorder that causes an abnormal curve of the spine, which can make the sufferer look distorted in appearance. In most cases, the cause of scoliosis is unknown, but it is often seen in people suffering with cerebral palsy or spina bifida and is a consequence of these conditions. It’s a hereditary condition that tends to run in families.

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Seasonal affective disorder (SAD)

Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a specific type of depression that affects people at the same time each year, predominantly autumn and winter. During spring and summer, people with SAD feel well. It is believed that SAD is related to a lack of daylight exposure, which would explain why people feel well during spring and summer and only start experiencing problems when the days get shorter.

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Selective mutism

Selective mutism is a childhood anxiety disorder in which the child chooses not to, or cannot, speak in certain situations — often social ones.

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Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS)

Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome or SARS is a serious respiratory disease which is caused by a virus, which the World Health Organisation has declared is now contained.

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Sexual problems

Sexual problems, also referred to as sexual dysfunction or sexual malfunction, is an umbrella term that takes in any difficulty experienced by an individual or a couple within their sexual relationship.

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Sinusitis is the inflammation of the sinuses; it's usually caused by an allergic reaction or a sinus infection that stops them from working properly.

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Skin cancer

Skin cancer is generally a malignant tumour that develops on the outside of the skin, and so it is clearly visible.

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Skin disorders

Skin disorder is an umbrella term for any adverse condition of the skin. Given the size and weight of the skin, and how many functions it has to perform, it is hardly surprising that there are many different kinds of conditions that can affect it.

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Smoking addiction

Smoking addiction, also known as nicotine addiction, is an addiction to smoking tobacco, usually in the form of cigarettes.

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Snoring is caused by a vibration in the upper respiratory tract that happens usually during sleeping. The cause of snoring is the obstruction of air during breathing. The obstruction is usually caused by one of the following:

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Spinal cord injury

Spinal cord injuries cause damage to the nerve fibres that carry messages to and from the brain. It can also cause loss of neurons.

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Sports injuries

Sports injuries can occur as the result of any sport, but they mainly tend to happen to athletes who take part in major events. This is because many sports injuries occur because of overuse of a certain part of the body. Sports injuries include:

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Sprains and strains

Sprains and strains are injuries that occur when a part of the body is overstretched.

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Stiff joints

Stiff joints fall into three types, as follows:

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Stiff muscles

Stiff muscles, or delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS), usually occurs up to 72 hours after exercising, and usually disappears within two to three days.

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Stomach ache

Stomach ache refers to an ache or pain in the area of the stomach, or to abdominal pain.

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Stress occurs as a direct result of being unable to respond in an appropriate way to emotional or physical threats, whether actual or imagined. Often this is because the natural flight-or-fight mechanism is exhausted from having been fired up so often.

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Stroke refers to a fast developing loss of brain function that is caused by the blood not being able to flow properly into and within the brain. This can be caused by a thrombosis or embolism (blood clot) blocking the blood supply, or it can be caused by a haemorrhage.

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Stuttering, also known as stammering, is a speech disorder in which the words tend to get stuck and fail to be expressed smoothly and clearly. Sometimes there are long pauses between the words and the sounds that tend to create the most difficulty are those of vowels.

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Substance abuse

Substance abuse generally refers to the use of, or addiction to any substance which leads to physical and mental ill health, or adversely impacts on the welfare of others.

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Syphilis is a sexually transmitted disease caused by bacteria which is usually spread by means of sexual intercourse, although it can also be transmitted by a mother to her child in the womb.

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