Wednesday's Health News in Snippets

30/NOV/2022

Alzheimer's Drug Lecanemab Hailed As Momentous Breakthrough.jpg

Alzheimer's Drug Lecanemab Hailed As Momentous Breakthrough

It has been hailed as monumental and historic that the first medication to slow Alzheimer's disease brain damage has been developed.

 

The scientific discovery puts an end to decades of futility and demonstrates that new drug development for Alzheimer's, the most prevalent form of dementia, is feasible.

 

Lecanemab, however, has a negligible impact on people's daily lives, and its relevance is up for debate.

 

Without a revolution in disease detection, most people would miss out on the drug's benefits because it only works in the early stages of the disease.

 

Lecanemab targets the beta amyloid, a sticky gunge that accumulates in Alzheimer's patients' brains.

 

Some view the results of this trial as a triumphant turning point in a medical field littered with failures, despair, and disappointment

 

The results, according to Alzheimer's Research UK, were "momentous."

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Student Nurse Performs Life-Saving CPR For First Time On Her Own Dad Having Heart Attack

A student nurse saved her father’s life by performing CPR for the first time when he had a heart attack following a kickabout with his grandson.

 

At his grandson Zac's seventh birthday celebration, Dean Finch, 65, passed out and started foaming at the mouth as he suffered a cardiac arrest.

 

Daughter Lois sprang into action, started CPR, and then used a defibrillator to jolt his heart back to life.

 

She had only ever practised CPR on a medical doll while she was in training.

 

As he participated in the adults versus children five-a-side game, Lois, 31, said he had jokingly told her and her mother Joy, 57, to "get the defib ready for me" minutes before he passed out.

 

He's back at work and fully fit, according to Lois of Brigg, Lincolnshire. She added that at the age of 57, his father passed away from a heart attack. "Dad was able to watch me graduate, which was so lovely,” she enthused.


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Malawi Starts Landmark Malaria Vaccination Drive

Malawi has started immunising kids as part of a massive, first-ever campaign against malaria.

 

Pharmaceutical company GSK created the RTS,S vaccine, which has been in development for more than three decades.

 

Only slightly more than 30% of the 5 to 17-month-olds who received it were protected, early trials indicate.

 

However, Malawi is confident that it will continue to play a significant part in the fight against the illness, which killed about 2,500 infants in the country two years ago.


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China Pushing To Vaccinate Elderly Against COVID-19

Following a recent spike in COVID-19 cases, China announced on Tuesday that it would step up its campaign to vaccinate seniors 60 and older.

 

The declaration follows a weekend of demonstrations calling for an end to the nation's stringent zero-Covid policy, which responds to even minor caseloads with severe lockdowns and quarantine orders.

 

China’s low vaccination rates, particularly among the older population, have long been seen as prolonging Beijing’s no-tolerance approach to Covid.

 

According to Beijing’s National Health Commission (NHC) officials, only 65.8% of people over 80 have received all recommended vaccinations.

 

Additionally, China has not yet authorised the use of mRNA vaccines, which have been shown to be more efficient.

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4,000 EU Doctors Leave Britain, Study Finds

According to a study released on Monday, the number of European doctors working for the National Health Service in England has decreased by more than 4,000 as a result of Britain's exit from the European Union.

 

The Nuffield Trust think-tank's research, however, specifically highlights a lack of anaesthetists, paediatricians, psychiatrists, heart, and lung specialists.

 

In 2021, the study estimates that 37,000 doctors from Europe were employed in the United Kingdom.

 

Recruitment of medical staff had slowed down as a result of Brexit. Without it, there would be nearly 4,300 more European doctors in Britain than there are currently, or about 41,300.

 

Specialists now require work visas because Britain left the EU, which come with high costs and burdensome bureaucracy.


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Mother Loses Peripheral Vision From Apparent Exposure To Mercury In Beauty Creams

According to a case report shared exclusively with CNN, a woman in Minnesota who used beauty products containing high levels of mercury lost some of her vision and unintentionally put her entire family at risk of mercury poisoning.

 

The report, shared by Dr. Erin Batdorff with the Minnesota Poison Control System, details the extensive symptoms experienced by the woman, also a mother, and how home visits conducted by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) found high levels of the toxic chemical in her children's bedrooms, bedding, household towels and laundry area.

 

"People have no idea," Batdorff, a fellow in medical toxicology who examined the woman in her home, told CNN. "No one intentionally wants to hurt themselves or their family members. But it's out there and you can't see it, you can't smell it. There's no way [for consumers] to know whether [mercury] is in the creams or not because it's not on the labels."

 

The patient, whose name has been concealed to protect her identity, was referred to Batdorff's team after visiting several medical professionals about a variety of symptoms, including leg pain, insomnia, weakness in her muscles, and eventually loss of her peripheral vision. Her blood and urine were found to have elevated mercury levels after clinical tests.


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Chinese Health Officials Defend Zero-Covid Policy But Pledge To Rectify Some Measures.jpg

Chinese Health Officials Defend Zero-Covid Policy But Pledge To Rectify Some Measures

In their first press conference since protests against the government's strict zero-Covid policy broke out over the weekend, China's top health officials have vowed to improve Covid-19 control measures to lessen their impact on people's lives while shifting blame for the public's annoyance away from the policy itself.

 

At a press conference held by the National Health Commission on Tuesday in Beijing, health officials defended the nation's overall policy direction, which aims to stop the spread of the virus through strict controls, and stated that lockdowns to stop the spread of the virus should be lifted "as quickly as possible" following outbreaks.

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WHO Renames Monkeypox As 'Mpox'

Monkeypox should now be generally referred to as "mpox," according to the World Health Organization.

 

The organisation stated that "both names will be used concurrently for one year while "monkeypox" is phased out."

 

The US will use the mpox name "from this point forward," according to the Biden administration, who stated that they "welcome the change."

 

More than ten years after the virus that causes the disease was found in captive monkeys, Monkeypox was given its name in 1970, according to the organisation. However, the virus that causes monkeypox can be found in a variety of other animals, suggesting that monkeys were not the original host of the disease.

Since the beginning of the most recent outbreak, scientists and experts have pushed for a name change to prevent stigma and discrimination.


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Slow Cognitive Decline With Flavonols, Study Says

A recent study found that consuming more flavonols, antioxidants present in many fruits, vegetables, tea, and wine, may reduce the rate of memory loss.

 

People in the study who consumed the most flavonols saw a 0.4 unit slower decline in cognitive score over the course of a decade than those who consumed the least. According to a study recently published in Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology, the findings persisted even after controlling for additional variables that may affect memory, such as age, sex, and smoking.

 

According to Dr. David Katz, a specialist in preventive and lifestyle medicine and nutrition who was not involved in the study, flavonols are cytoprotective, which means they protect cells, including neurons, so it is possible there could be a direct impact on cognition.


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Monday's Health News in Snippets

28/NOV/2022

Physical Exercise While Young Could Help Delay Ageing, Experts Say.jpg

Physical Exercise While Young Could Help Delay Ageing, Experts Say

Young people have been urged by health experts to engage in regular physical activity if they want to delay physical ageing as they get older.

 

Experts advise people who are worried about their physical health in old age to exercise regularly while they are still young.

 

Professor Mike Ogirima, one of the experts, told PUNCH HealthWise that people should exercise regularly in order to prevent the onset of bending over as they age.

 

Although bending over is a natural part of getting older, according to Prof. Ogirima, a former president of the Nigeria Medical Association, it can be postponed with exercise even though a person's biological clock can affect when they begin bending over in old age.

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High Vitamin A Intake May Cause Convulsion In Children, Experts Warn

Mothers have been advised not to overdose their children on multivitamins by medical professionals due to potential serious health issues.

 

They claim that giving children too much vitamin A can have an adverse effect on the brain and even cause convulsions.

 

They pointed out that proper and healthy nutrition, rather than dietary supplements, is what kids need to develop and thrive.

 

According to Mayo Clinic, taking excessive amounts of vitamin A supplements may also harm the liver.


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Landslide kills at least 14 at funeral in Cameroon.jpg

Landslide Kills At Least 14 At Funeral In Cameroon

At least 14 people have been reported dead as a result of a landslide in Yaoundé, the capital of Cameroon.

 

Naseri Paul Bea, the regional governor, said those who died had been at a funeral.

 

On Sunday evening, rescue teams were still looking for bodies and survivors.

 

Residents said several families of mourners had gathered under large tents on waste ground at the top of a hill, when part of the ground beneath them gave way.

 

It's the latest weather-related catastrophe in Cameroon this year.

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Emergency Declared After Deadly Landslide On Italian Island

A landslide caused by heavy rain on the Italian vacation island of Ischia on Saturday claimed the lives of at least one person, prompting Italy to declare a state of emergency.

 

According to the Campania Prefecture office, as of Sunday morning, 209 more people had been evacuated from the area where the landslide occurred, eight people had been rescued, and 10 people were still missing.

 

In a statement on Sunday, Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni declared a state of emergency due to "exceptional flood and landslide events."

 

According to the statement, it went into effect on Saturday and provides €2 million ($2.082 million) in aid and assistance to the local population affected by the landslide.


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Protests Erupt Across China In Unprecedented Challenge To Xi Jinping’s Zero-Covid Policy.j

Protests Erupt Across China In Unprecedented Challenge To Xi Jinping’s Zero-Covid Policy

Chinese leader Xi Jinping on Monday encountered unprecedented opposition after thousands of protesters rallied in cities across China over the weekend against his "zero-Covid" strategy , with some daring to openly call for his removal in the streets.

 

“Step down, Xi Jinping! Step down, Communist Party!” some protesters shouted among hundreds who gathered in the financial hub Shanghai, one of several major cities where demonstrations erupted following a fatal fire at an apartment block in the far western region of Xinjiang, last Thursday.

 

The fire appeared to act as a catalyst for swirling public anger over China's stringent zero-Covid regulations after videos appeared that seemed to suggest lockdown measures prevented firefighters from reaching the victims.

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