I SEEM to get a bloated stomach, including cramps and pains after I drink milk. Could I be allergic?

LACTOSE intolerance is a common digestive problem where the body is unable to digest lactose, a type of sugar mainly found in milk and dairy products.

Symptoms of lactose intolerance usually develop within a few hours of consuming food or drink that contains lactose.

The severity of your symptoms and when they appear depends on the amount of lactose you've consumed.

Some people may still be able to drink a small glass of milk without triggering any symptoms, while others may not even be able to have milk in their tea or coffee.

Depending on what dairy products you're able to eat, you may also require additional calcium and vitamin D supplements to keep your bones strong and healthy.

In some cases, your GP may refer you to a dietician for further advice. For further information on allergies check: www.nhsinform.scot

I'M climbing Mount Kilimanjaro as part of a fundraiser – should I be concerned about altitude sickness?

ALTITUDE sickness is a common condition that can occur when you climb to a high altitude too quickly.

The decrease in atmospheric pressure makes breathing difficult because you aren't able to take in as much oxygen. Most cases are mild, with symptoms that can include headache, nausea, dizziness and exhaustion.

In rare cases, altitude sickness can cause fluid to build up either on the lungs or the brain.

These are very serious conditions and require immediate medical attention. If you have mild symptoms of altitude sickness, you shouldn't go any higher for at least 24 to 48 hours.

You can continue to climb if your symptoms improve after this. Proper acclimatisation to altitudes of about 2,500m (just over 8,200 feet) or more is the best way to prevent altitude sickness.

It usually takes a few days for the body to get used to a change in altitude. Ascending slowly will give your body time to adapt to the change in altitude.

For example, once you're above 3,000m (10,000 feet) try not to increase the altitude at which you sleep by more than 300-500m a night. Keeping hydrated is also important, but make sure you avoid alcohol.

WHAT is Impetigo?

IMPETIGO is a common and highly contagious skin infection that causes sores and blisters, and it commonly occurs in two forms, non-bullous impetigo, which typically affects the skin around the nose and mouth and bullous impetigo, which typically affects the central part of the body between the waist and neck.

Symptoms of impetigo begin to occur four to 10 days after you become infected, meaning the infection can easily be passed on without realising it. The symptoms of each strain of impetigo include non-bullous impetigo symptoms begin with the appearance of red sores – typically around the nose and mouth. These sores burst before leaving crusts that take anything between a few days and a few weeks to heal. Other symptoms include high temperature and swollen glands.

Bullous impetigo symptoms normally begin with fluid-filled blisters appearing on the central part of the body. These blisters are usually painful to the touch and spread before bursting a few days later. Symptoms of fever and swollen glands are more common in cases of bullous impetigo

Most cases of impetigo can be diagnosed upon physical examination by your GP.

Impetigo is not usually serious, and tends to clear up on it's own within a few weeks. However, treatment can help speed up the recovery process and lower the risk of the disease being passed on to others. In milder cases, antibiotic cream is recommended to apply to the affected areas. In more severe or widespread cases, antibiotic tablets can be prescribed to help clear up the condition, these are taken two to four times a day for seven days.