Thursday, January 29, 2009

Beware of that nut!

One of our most innocent extra culinary activities is to chew a few pieces of betel nut after meals. But some of us may be overdoing it. Because al lot of young people are falling prey to a most troublesome affliction of the mouth. It is called Oral submucous fibrosis.

We used to see the condition occasionally in India when we were in medical college. But I was surprised by the relatively common occurrence of this disease in Maldives. Simply put, the normal mucosa of the mouth, especially the soft palate area gets fibrosed and loses its elasticity. Many young people come to consult us for a minor complaint of burning sensation in the throat and on examination we are confronted with quite a severe case of oral submucous fibrosis. The problem with this condition is that it is basically incurable, irreversible and it is progressive. As the condition gets worse, the palate gets more and more fibrosed causing less and less mouth opening till some unfortunate souls can open their mouth just enough to get a single finger in! It is probably one of the most distressing conditions that can affect the mouth. Eating and cleaning the mouth will be hampered. Treatment? Well, we are as desperate as the patient. Oral steroid applications and injections and such like measure give very little relief. Maxillofacial surgeons attempt dividing the fibrous bands in severe cases with restricted mouth opening. Once the condition sets in, it follows its insidious course. So next time you put in that piece of areca nut, think twice. Oral submucous fibrosis is certainly one condition where prevention will be better than the ‘cure’ (if there is any!)


Saturday, January 24, 2009

Just calm down, Mr Nasheed!

Dr. Moosa Murad is a quiet, intelligent and extremely decent medical officer who was working in the medical ward of IGMH till he left to pursue his post graduation. He was having dinner the other night, when he was called by the duty nurse. Apparently some VIP wants to talk to him immediately regarding a patient. Dr Murad enquired about the patient and was told that patient was stable and ok. He explained that he was having his dinner and will come shortly, which was an acceptable proposition by any standards. But the nurse called him two or three times as the VIP was letting out steam. Dr Murad finished his meal and went to see who this big shot was, as such puffing up was not uncommon in our practice. To his amusement, it was not just a VIP, but the VVIP. It was Mohammed Nasheed, the then Information Minister and he was fuming.

"Do you think you are god?" Asked Honorable Nasheed. Apparently Nasheed cannot tolerate any competition in this regard and he made clear who was the boss. Being the intelligent and the gentle soul he is, Dr Murad listened quietly to the minister's ranting. Infuriated with Nasheed's behaviour, the Maldivian Medical Association was about to condemn him in a statement. For the next few days, there were some delicious sms doing the rounds among the doctor community. All about Kutti Nasheed.
I recollected this incident beacuse it illustrates the typical Nasheed: all important and arrogant. But there is another facet to this interesting personality. An intense dislike of Islamic scholars, a feature which he shares with people like the late and lamented Abdul Hakeem Hussain Manik, Majid Abdul Wahhab and Thasleema Nasreen. Like them he also cannot resist the compulsive obsession to attack those representing Islam. Like his female counterpart across the Bay of Bengal, Nasheed's voice is also hoarse from hysterically crying Taliban at every turn.
The point is well illustrated by his behavior on the Ministry of Islamic Affairs decision to block the DJs arranged by some misguided youth. DJs may look ok and even holy to the jaundiced eyes of people like Nasheed. But the vast majority of Maldivians, including the desperate parents of the youth who were going to party that night, find the idea of some youth dancing jammed all night long an abhorrent thing. Any child knows that such behavior is not for Muslims and is clearly against the norms of Islam. But Nasheed knows better. Apparently he knows Islam better than Dr Abdul Majeed who holds a doctorate from the university of the City of the Prophet of Islam. Nasheed's outbursts on the issue and his low grade excretions on Dr Abdul Majeed shows that he is determined to harass Dr Abdul Majeed, the most respected Islamic scholar of Maldives, in the same way he harassed Sheikh Rasheed, a man old enough to be his father. Coming days will probably prove this. People with this sickness simply cannot help it. We pity them.
It was also wrong for Shafeeq (Sappe) of Dhivehi Observer to say that the action of Islamic Ministry will cut down President Nasheed's popularity. True that 60% of Maumoonic generation is into drugs. But the youth in question, the DJ type, are usually so high they cannot tell day from night.
The most disturbing allegation thrown against President Nasheed by Maumoon and cronies was about Nasheed’s (Anni’s) lack of commitment to Islam. Firm action from Nasheed's government on Islamic front will go a long way in dispelling peoples fears in this regard. Despite Maumoon's 30 year campaign of mellowing down Islam to his own version where everything goes (incubating "moderates" ala Nasheed), poisoning of our youth with narcotics, the vast majority of Maldivians love Islam. Politicians hoping to keep their chair will ignore this fact only at their own peril.
Nasheed may be very good debator, probably the best in Maldives at present. We were all really impressed by his show during the "Nizaamee" referendum debate. He did a good job in reforming the media during his mentor’s regime. He may be intelligent and his blog may be number 1 in the world. But that doesn't mean that everything is right with him. He certainly needs a little bit of wisdom and a wisp of humility to go along with his overburdened grey matter.
When the Islamic Ministry asked the Imams to make a special dua for the besieged Palestinians who are being slaughtered by the most ruthless military machine in the world, the IDF of the Zionist State, some people opposed it too, just like the DJ fans. One Thuthu Didi, an Imam in one mosque in Fua Mulah refused saying the “Adhaalat beards” don't know anything. Like his more educated colleague Nasheed, Thuththu Didi also went for the beard. Even though both don’t know each other, both these characters have much in common. Both are hardcore DRP fanatics and both arrogantly think they know Islamic law better than the scholars. Thuththu Didi is well known for his hatred and vocal abuse of Adhaalat scholars.
I hear that Honorable Nasheed talked about personal hygiene and refinement in his attack on Dr Abdul Majeed. I am amazed at the impunity of this man. It seems that in the democratic Maldives, we should have our facial hair set upto Kutti Nasheed’s standards!
Adhaalat party will, Insha-Allah, continue its struggle of trying to deliver the message of Islam and save the soul of this nation. The Thuthuthu Didis, Mavota Shareefs and Nasheeds just cannot bear to see the Islamic awakening that is sweeping the Maldives like elsewhere. Seething with fury, they are like the pressure cooker, letting out the steam and blowing the whistle on and off. We have to tolerate their shrill whistles because otherwise these kettles may burst. It is their pressure outlet valve. It gives them the much needed catharsis.


Welcome back dear friends!

Assalam Alaikum!
After a long break, I am starting to update my blog, Insha-Allah.
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