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Posts Tagged ‘health’

Americans Are Odd – Why Execute A Terminal Cancer Patient?

There are times when it appears that the transatlantic cousins are more than a little odd. Their preoccupation with guns puzzles many this side of the Pond for example, their continuing love affair with executions meets with the approval of the vox populi over here if not with those who rule us. But seriously, who tries to execute a terminal cancer patient?

Part of this they did get right:

An execution in the US was aborted last week after the inmate was left with 10 puncture wounds when medical personnel were unable to find a vein after two and a half hours of trying. The failed attempts left behind a bloodied death chamber, the inmate’s lawyer said.

No, that’s getting it right. The purpose of the death penalty is to put the Fear of God into those who might commit a serious crime. A blood spattered execution chamber aids in doing that so why not? In fact, there’s a good argument that if a death penalty we’re going to have then the more public and gory it is the better. Why go with private and peaceful like a lethal injection in a prison when we could have breaking on the wheel in the public square? Evisceration perhaps? Either would be more of a deterrent.

But then there’s the part that they got wrong:

In court filings in the days before the planned execution, Hamm’s lawyers said he had terminal cancer and a history of intravenous drug use that had severely compromised his veins.

Yes the drug use will have made the injection more difficult. But the terminal cancer would make it unnecessary as well. In fact, why bother with the rigmarole at all?

It’s fairly well known that a death from cancer isn’t a pretty nor enjoyable one. That’s why those who die that way tend to go out on a cloud of morphine – these days perhaps the much stronger fentanyl. A prisoner whose veins can’t be found isn’t going to be getting useful amounts of either of those drugs now, is he? So, why bother with the execution?

Why not just with hold treatment for the cancer, including pain relief, and allow nature to get on with the rest of it? Possibly film it as an example to others?

For if we’re going to have death as a disincentive to crime then let’s make those deaths as awful as possible so as to increase the disincentive, the precautionary effect. And if we’re not doing it so as to dissuade people, as gorily as possible, then why in hell are we doing it in the first place?

Posted: 26th, February 2018 | In: Key Posts, News | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Over-65s health benefits from cannabis: study

The case for use of medical marijuana grows more compelling as the European Journal of Internal Medicine publishes the findings of a study: 93.7% of OAPs benefited from cannabis:

During the study period, 2736 patients above 65 years of age began cannabis treatment and answered the initial questionnaire. The mean age was 74.5 ± 7.5 years. The most common indications for cannabis treatment were pain (66.6%) and cancer (60.8%). After six months of treatment, 93.7% of the respondents reported improvement in their condition and the reported pain level was reduced from a median of 8 on a scale of 0-10 to a median of 4. Most common adverse events were: dizziness (9.7%) and dry mouth (7.1%). After six months, 18.1% stopped using opioid analgesics or reduced their dose.


Our study finds that the therapeutic use of cannabis is safe and efficacious in the elderly population. Cannabis use may decrease the use of other prescription medicines, including opioids. Gathering more evidence-based data, including data from double-blind randomized-controlled trials, in this special population is imperative.

Less reliance on opioids. That’s good, right.

Posted: 16th, February 2018 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Insurance or the NHS: who pays for the rising cost of childbirth?

What does it cost to have a baby on the NHS? The Guardian says: having a baby without complications costs £2,790; having a baby with complications costs £5,000. Those figures are supplied by the Nuffield Trust, an independent charity. The Mirror says it would cost you “tens of thousands of pounds” to have a baby were it not for the NHS.

Would it? Would you all really pay tens of thousands of pounds to have a child?

In the Guardian, another question arises today: “Why does it cost $32,093 just to give birth in America?” The inference, of course, is that the NHS does it much better and much cheaper that any other alternative system.

The answer to the Guardian’s question is simple: there’s insurance that covers it. It’s less about what it costs than it is about who pays the bill and how it’s paid. Indeed, in paragraph five, the paper notes that “insurance typically covers a large chunk of those costs”.

And then this:

Medicaid, a program available to low income households that covers nearly all birth costs….Childbirth Connection put the average out of pocket childbirth costs for mothers with insurance at $3,400 in 2013.

But things do look pricey in the US. The BBC has this graph from 2015:



Prof Gerard Anderson of the Johns Hopkins Centre for Hospital Finance and Management explains the costings:

“If you can make more money as a doctor by ordering more tests, you are going to order them and therefore patients end up getting more tests.

“You also pay a fee for services a la carte in the US so if you are worried about the pain of the childbirth and have an epidural, you’ll have to pay for it. If you ask for a painkiller after giving birth, you’ll have to pay for it. And all those costs rack up.”

Money is the incentive that encourages more expensive care? The piecemeal approach can create a higher final bill. The NYTimes reports:

Recent studies have found that more than 30 percent of American women have Caesarean sections or have labor induced with drugs — far higher numbers than those of other developed countries and far above rates that the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists considers necessary.

And here’s the hook. Anderson explains;

“If you don’t have health insurance in the US, hospitals and doctors will ask you to pay three to four times what someone with insurance will pay for the same service because no-one is negotiating rates on their behalf.”

Andrew Sullivan:

Matt Yglesias drools over the possibility of getting the entire country under the government’s healthcare thumb. Medicare is a particularly revealing program idea in this respect. At a deep level, the left sees all of us as the equivalent of senior citizens, dependent on the benevolence of government for our needs and wants. Of course, they will provide our needs as they see fit – they’re good people, you know. And so much smarter than the rest of us. There will be none of that wasteful drug spending we now have. How dare Americans spend their own money on treatments they actually want? It’s inefficient! This remains the key template for liberals: citizens as permanent supplicants. Those who do manage to look after themselves? Don’t worry. They’ll tax you till you really do need the equivalent of Medicare. And expect you to be grateful for it.

Is the NHS efficient, providing heath care at the points of need? Not always. It spend lots of money on other stuff. In 2014, the NHS’s future was outlined in a policy document:

‘The first argument we make in this Forward View is that the future health of millions of children, the sustainability of the NHS, and the economic prosperity of Britain all now depend on a radical upgrade in prevention and public health… The NHS will therefore now back hard-hitting national action on obesity, smoking, alcohol and other major health risks. We will help develop and support new workplace incentives to promote employee health and cut sickness-related unemployment.’

Does your private quack do that? Would you want them to? Would you pay them to?

And is it fair to take one part of your ‘cradle to grave’ health needs out of context?

The OECD tells us that the UK spends less on health as a share of GDP than the USA:



The message seems to be: if you can afford it, get insurance and read the small print. If you can’t, be poor enough to qualify for help but don’t expect many of the optional extras. And then ask if the NHS – a tax-funded, free at the point of delivery healthcare provider – serves the needs to the patient best, how it compares to foreign alternatives and if we shouldn’t be looking at other solutions, including better funding for community care?

Posted: 16th, January 2018 | In: Money, News | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Billionaire donates £200m to investigate ‘baloney’ and spread bad science

leeches homeopathy Henry Samueli


Mega-rich Henry Samueli, a fan of “integrative medicine” (homeopathy) has donated – get this – 200m to UC Irvine. “The human body is a very complex and highly interconnected system. Therefore our healthcare needs to be looked at through a more holistic lens,” opines Samueli, who owns the Anaheim Ducks. “Our genetics, our surrounding environment, our nutrition, our physical activity and our mental state all play critical roles in our well-being.”

As someone who has been stricken by serious illness, I can says that I’m going with the science and the big machines over the pseudoscience, personal prejudice, propaganda, faith-based medicine guff that denies human progress in chemistry and physics.

Rebecca Watson is scathing:

Now they’ve given millions to UC Irvine, a public university, to set up a school for baloney….I mean “alternative medicine.” It’ll be called the “College of Health Sciences,” misusing at least three words in a four-word name, which is really pretty impressive.

I read about all this in a positively glowing article in the LA Times, which didn’t seek out a single voice to disagree with the idea that a college of baloney is a brilliant idea. The LA Times didn’t even consult the LA Times of six months ago, where they reported on another woman who took aconite as a remedy. That woman was hospitalized for weeks and then she died, because aconite is a poison. Susan’s aconite product must have been real homeopathy, meaning that it was just sugar water and there wasn’t actually any aconite in it at all. Otherwise, instead of getting better naturally from her cold she also would have fucking died, and then nobody would be giving millions of dollars to a public university to spread dangerous baloney.

As they say in Anaheim: Quack!



Spotter: BB

Posted: 27th, September 2017 | In: Money, News | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Medics kill twice as many Americans than strokes

The third biggest killer in the USA is death by medical error.


death medical kills


You go into hospital – but will you come out?

Posted: 18th, July 2017 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Daily Express overdoses on aspirin

The Daily Express has big news on aspirin:


Aspirin Daily Express


A daily dose of aspirin poses a health risk, says the paper.

Or as it told us earlier:


Aspirin Daily Express


Spotter: Liz Gerard 

Posted: 14th, June 2017 | In: Tabloids | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Everything you read about drinking during pregnancy is wrong



Everything you ever read about drinking whilst pregnant is wrong. Prohibition for the pregnant is unfair and unfounded. The Telegraph has news:

Advising women not to drink when pregnant is “sexist” and causes “needless anxiety”, senior academics have said.

Pregnancy charities and researchers have called for a change to the “alarmist” official Government guidelines, which warn expectant mothers to avoid alcohol completely.

They say the policy has no basis in evidence and ends up “stigmatising” women and excluding them from society.

No basis. So the dire warnings are wrong? Like this one which appeared in the Daily Telegraph:


pregnancy drinking daily telegraph


If you want to be truly alarmed you turn to the Daily Mail, which has issued all sorts of dire warnings over drinking and pregnancy.

Just one glass of wine a week while pregnant ‘can harm a baby’s IQ’ – 15 November 2012

Women believe they can drink while pregnant – but one glass of wine could damage your baby for life -19/04/2008

Drinking alcohol while pregnant helps ‘create unruly children’ – 06/11/2007

Women who drink a glass of wine a day during pregnancy affect their child’s growth for nine years – 16/08/2012


daily mail drinking pregnant


daily mail drinking pregnant


daily mail drinking pregnant


daily mail drinking pregnant


And you can always shame someone with a long lens camera shot:


daily mail drinking pregnant


Who else needs a drink?

Posted: 18th, May 2017 | In: Broadsheets, Key Posts, Reviews, Tabloids | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Health shocker: water contains less calories than beer

water beer


Health News sensation. The Press Association has news: “Swapping a daily beer for a glass of water cuts the risk of obesity by a fifth and aids weight loss, research suggests.”

Yep. It’s true. Consuming less calories can stop you becoming fat. Who knew? The newswire story then gets topped and tiled to become a scoop.

“Switching daily beer for water cuts risk of obesity, study finds,” says The Guardian:

Replacing a beer with a glass of water every day could cut people’s chances of becoming obese by 20% on average, according to a study. Researchers from the University of Navarra in Spain found that the same holds true for sugary soft drinks – having a water each day instead cut the risk of obesity among more than 16,000 participants in the study by 15%.

The Telegraph: “Experts at the world’s largest obesity conference said the simple change is an easy way of beating the bulge.”

We’re also told: “Experts suggested that the fact beer is so calorific may be to blame.”

In tomorrow’s shocking news: Katie Price sleeps on her back!

Posted: 18th, May 2017 | In: Broadsheets, Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

The NHS joins the goodly war on sugar

The mantra ‘Sugar is bad’ has been drummed in. It’s a good message, morally right, even. Sugar is linked to all manner of health curses, not least of all fat, which as we’ve been told is a social ill that costs the thin lots of money to treat and blocks our daylight. Fat people are ambulatory sugar turds, composite blends of ready-mealed scum and pig foreskins bloated on day-glow sugary drinks that mean on any given day just ten fat people seep more toxic gas than a stricken BP tanker. Indeed, if fat people would all hurry up and die, crematoria could turned into sources of renewable energy. Like being poor, being fat is your fault, you useless porker.

So the fat are stigmatised. And that’s good because now they can now they are wrong. It wasn’t genes. It was greed and apathy. Fat is not jolly as it was in the 1950s. Fat is weak and needy. And the thin, wealthy and knowing are here to help you to slim. And they will do this by banning sugar.

The NHS has moved to prevent companies operating stores on its premises – WH Smith, Marks & Spencer, Greggs, Subway, Costa and mote – hawking too much sugar. All companies must reduce sales of sales of sugary drinks to 10 per cent of total drink sales. This censoring – or as hipsters terms it, editing – includes cutting out fruit juice, which, as Rob Lyons points out, was once one of our fabled “five a day“. All vendors must agree to the proposal or have all sales of sugared drinks banned.

Lyons says the latest ban reduces “our freedom to choose what we want. It is an attempt to put health above any other consideration – like whether or not drinks actually taste nice, for example.”

The message is that people are too stupid and gullible to work out that sugar and inactivity leads to fat. The stuff must be removed from view lest these mentally-negligible dolts yield to temptation, as surely they must.

Very soon sugared drinks will be sold behind the counter; packing will feature pictures of morbidly obese men with their pendulous moobs trapped in zimmer frames and gargantuan women say side by side the Essex floodplains as a primary Thames Flood Barrier.

Having told you for years that fat is not your fault, but a condition that can be cured on a reality TV make-over show and the therapist’s couch, the knowing now tell you that is is your fault but you’re too thick to help yourself.

The one consistent view is that you are not clever enough to make your own choices in life. And the great news is that there is no end of illiberal know-alls willing and able to help.

Posted: 28th, April 2017 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Blaming fat kids for the NHS ‘crisis’ is absurd

More new on fat people, society’s pariahs. The Telegraph has news:

Fat children, not the elderly, are fuelling the NHS crisis, a leading doctor has said.

Has anyone whose attended an NHS clinic or hospital been confronted by pods of fat children waiting to be treated? No, me neither. But Lord McColl of Dulwich, a  middle-aged non-fat former surgeon, thinks fat kids are to blame.

Th paper has form with fat-blaming. These are just two recent stories it’s featured:

If your child is fat then you are a bad parent

Why you never get over a fat childhood 

The Tele’s not alone in its assault on fat children. The Mail told its readers: “Fat children will ‘collapse the NHS’: Number of 11-year-olds weighing more than 15st DOUBLES in a year.”

The latest barb aimed at young bloaters is rooted in Lord McColl’s words to the Lords:

“It’s not so much the old people getting older – because old people have always been getting older. The difference in the last 30 years is the grotesque increase in young people getting fatter and fatter.”

What can be done? Narrow the hospital doors? Maybe we can wonder why at a time when lo-cal diets are all the rage and  TV news routinely features dire warnings on fat, people are getting fatter?

Lord McColl has repeatedly warned of an obesity epidemic, telling peers last year it was “killing millions, costing billions and the cure is free – just eat fewer calories”.

Eat less and the NHS will be saved billions. No need to invest at all, then. you need to starve them.

Posted: 10th, February 2017 | In: Broadsheets, Money | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Daily Mail scare stories: antibiotics and depression

depression antibiotics


It’s Health Tuesday in the Mail. Scare Story highlights are:

Page 47: “Just one court of antibiotics may raise risk of depression.” The thinking is if you take antibiotics, you cause in imbalance in bugs in your guts which upsets your brain cells’ ability to communicate.

You might have read the same tory in 2015, when it appeared on a website as, “Antibiotic exposure associated with increased risk for depression, anxiety.”

But what of one courts of antibiotics making you depressed?

Exposure to antibiotics was not associated with a change in risk for psychosis. A single course of antifungals was associated with a mild increase in risk for depression and anxiety, however, there was no increased risk with repeated exposures.

In The Gut Microbiome and the Brain, Leo Galland has more:

No, antibiotics do not directly cause panic attacks.

They can, however, exacerbate symptoms in those who already have anxiety disorders.

There has been a wealth of research in the recent years connecting gut bacteria to mental processes. This connection is aptly named the “gut-brain axis.” Antibiotics are prescribed to get rid of bacterial infections. Unfortunately, most antibiotics don’t just kill the bad bacteria, they kill the healthy bacteria living in your gut. This healthy bacteria has a lot of different functions, one being to line the gut and basically reinforce its “walls.” They can also influence neurotransmitters.

When you destroy these bacteria, it makes sense that you may notice a bodily change. This could be intestinal distress or mood changes. In scientific studies “germ-free” mice, or those without gut bacteria, are more reactive to stress than non-germ-free (normal) mice. It’s important to remember this is a mouse study, not a human study. It can give some important clues, but might not be the whole picture.

In short, antibiotics will not induce a panic attack, but may increase reactivity, making it more likely that a person prone to panic attacks will feel anxious. This can possibly turn into a panic attack, but with an established treatment regimen, it can be avoided.

You can read the the research first-hand here.


Posted: 24th, May 2016 | In: Reviews, Tabloids | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Beating back pain over and over in the Daily Express

How dod I beat back pain? Funny you should ask. The Daily Express has news on just how to beat back pain.


daily express back pain


Standing up and moving forward – i.e. walking – can help.

Giles Shedrick has facts:

Seven in ten people have suffered recurring neck or back twinges for more than a decade, research has shown. The pain has forced three in ten to take time off work. Last year almost 10 million sick days were taken.

This augments Giles’s previous reports:

September 2015:

The official figures show seven people in 10 have lived with recurring neck or back pain for more than a decade and three in 10 took time off work last year… The number of sick days caused by the condition rocketed by 29 per cent to almost 10 million in the year to 2014.


Posted: 12th, January 2016 | In: Reviews, Tabloids | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Caffeine-Use Disorder is as real as your hallucinations

coffee men


Scare story of the day is found in the Daily Mail (natch.), wherein we learn of “caffeine-use disorder”.

Sophie Freeman asks:

But how do you know when your love of coffee has gone too far?

When you’re on a coffee drip? The answer is with boffins at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore and the American University in Washington D.C.

Despite being the “most widely used psychoactive drug in the world”, caffeine can make you jittery, anxious and tense. A cup of coffee is the Daily Mail in liquid form.

As for the study behind the news of a new disorder to be treated by a new kind of therapy, the researchers surveyed 67 people. The coffee drinker were put on a “caffeine-fading scheme”, seeing their consumption reduced. They were given a booklet to “use between counsellor sessions”.

They were then locked alone inside their mum’s stuffy downstairs toilet for five days and invited to work through their delusions, nightmares and back copies of Readers’ Digest magazine.


Posted: 2nd, December 2015 | In: Reviews, Tabloids, The Consumer | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Statins makes you age faster and live to 120, say Daily Express and Daily Mail



The Express has news to chill the ill: “Statins Age You Faster.

A GP expert in the field said: “They just make many patients feel years older. Side effects mimic the ageing process.”

He is Professor Reza Izadpanah, a stem cell biologist and lead author of the research published in the American Journal of Physiology. He says:

“Our study shows statins may speed up the ageing process. People who use statins as a preventative medicine for heath should think again as our research shows they may have general unwanted effects on the body which could include muscle pain, nerve problems and joint problems.”




The paper cites another expert:

Dr Malcolm Kendrick, a GP in Macclesfield, Cheshire, who has studied heart health and statins, said: “Statins just make many patients feel years older. This research reinforces what has long been suspected. The side effects of statins mimic the ageing process.

“I observe patients on statins slowing down. Some are not affected, for some it is a relatively subtle process, but for many it is a serious side effect and one which disturbingly helps us confirm what we have long suspected.”

One research paper plus one GP’s opinion… Is that enough?


Screen Shot 2015-09-28 at 09.03.50


The Mail links to a report by The Longevity Panel – “The Panel independently monitors scientific evidence that could potentially explain changes and differences in life expectancy in the UK” . It says:

Research has shown that statins have effects that might directly slow ageing. They reduce inflammation, and slow down the rate by which telomeres shorten.

The Daily Mail has more on how taking statins could make you live longer:

Dr Alex Zhavoronkov, an anti-ageing expert, believes medical advances and knowledge of lifestyles will lead to a far longer life expectancy than has been seen to date…

According to the Office for National Statistics, a boy born in the UK today is expected to live to 78.8 years and a girl to 82.8 years.  Many health experts think most people can exceed that by walking regularly, cutting down on fat, sugar and salt in their diets and using existing drugs such as statins.

The last word is from Professor Reza Izadpanah’s July 2015 study:

In light of our findings it is important to critically balance a possible benefit of statin therapy against the less favorable negative effects of statins. While here we present novel in vitro findings, future in vitro and in vivo studies should aim to better understanding the underlying molecular mechanisms as well as to assess a possible reversibility of long-term statin treatment on stem cell function.

In other words: we on’t know if stains make you age faster, but it’s an interesting idea. The Daily Express really is scaremongering.




Posted: 28th, September 2015 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Woman guilty of growing bladder cancer preventing marijuana to help sick husband

cannabis oil


Good news for all tree lovers. London has a new “forest“. The Sun says a forest was “discovered” in a “remote part of Kingston, south-west London.”  

The doubly good news is that this is a “forest of cannabis”. The less good news is that these days a forest need only be “the size of a football pitch” to qualify.

PC Sarah Henderson says the woodland looked like “a small forest of Christmas trees and was complete with a gazebo”. It sounds a pretty idyllic spot. So the police have destroyed it.

No-one’s been arrested. But if you want a look at the kind of hardcore villain growing weed these day you could do worse than look to Rawtenstall, Lancashire, where Jeanette Hurst, 58, has been arrested for growing marijuana plants.

Mrs Hurst’s husband Roy has cancer. She was using the weed in a bid to alleviate his suffering. At Burnley Crown Court, Mrs Hurst has pleaded guilty to production of a class B drug and also intent to supply to her husband. Her nursing earned her a 18 month community order. She says:

“It’s been 15 months of sheer hell – just hell. I just wanted it over with.  I don’t know how Roy got through it but I have been having to put myself on the back burner because of him. I’ve been so worried about him.”

Mr Hurst has bladder cancer.

In other news:

Cannabis users were 45 percent less likely to contract bladder cancer than their more abstemeous peers, according to the National Cancer Institute (NCI) – a branch of the National Institutes for Health.

Such are the facts.


Posted: 26th, September 2015 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Watch: scientist hasn’t washed for 12 Years uses bacteria to ‘stay’ clean


American scientist Dave Whitlock says:

“No one did clinical trials on people taking showers every day. I have not taken a shower in 12 years.”

(Via Oddity Central):

….In fact, he says that the chemicals in our soaps and shampoos have destroyed all the friendly bacteria that once inhabited our skin and kept us clean.

Whitlock first started thinking about good bacteria when a woman he was dating asked him why horses liked to roll around in the dirt during summer.

No plumbing in the stable?

“The only way that horses could evolve this behavior was if they had substantial evolutionary benefits from it,” Whitlock explained. That’s when he realised that for the horses, this was actually a way of keeping clean.

Until then, no one had considered that skin bacteria was important and could be helpful to the body. “I didn’t have a biology degree – I wasn’t at an institution that was renowned for its biological research,” Whitlock said. “And I was proposing something completely off the wall.” But he went ahead and invented a one-of-a-kind spray – called ‘Mother Dirt AO+ Mist’ – consisting of ‘good’ bacteria.

Whether or not he scored another date is not known.



Posted: 12th, September 2015 | In: Reviews, Strange But True, Technology, The Consumer | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

NHS nurses ordered to wear the right socks or else

socksWhat colour are the wrong socks? That question to readers of the  BExhill-ion-Sea Observer, which reports on East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust’s decree that staff could face disciplinary action because of the colour of their socks.

The Trust’s uniform policy says sock must be plain and muted in colour. But staff at Eastbourne DGH and Conquest Hospital in Hastings are ordered to wear matching black socks.

Is black muted? Black is the colour of death and misery. Why not brightly coloured socks? What does the Trust have against them?

And why can’t female nurses wear black seamed stockings, like in the the Carry On films?

A staff member wonders:

“Coloured socks don’t affect how efficient we work. Most of us wear trousers that mean you can’t even see the socks – has there actually been any complaints from patients or relatives about our socks if they are visible? What happens if we refuse to lift up our trouser leg? They’ll be asking to check the colour of our underwear next. We’re not stupid – we won’t come into work wearing a dress with bright coloured socks pulled up to our knees. When we wear dresses, we wear tights and look professional and approachable to those who come first – our patients.”

Alice Webster, Director of Nursing, responds: “No member of staff has been disciplined for the colour of their socks.”

But if they do wear red ones, well, they’re asking for it.

Posted: 2nd, September 2015 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Cannabis oil: parents and cancer victims crimialzied for using medical marijuana

cannabis oil


What would you do to help your ill child? Would you give her cannabis oil? Louise Bostock, 30, gave the tincture to her three-year-old daughter Jayla. The child suffers from epileptic fits. Mrs Bostock thought the cannabis oil would help. It did.

The Sun reports:

When Louise told nurses [about the oil], she was prevented from removing Jayla from Birmingham Children’s Hospital for five days while they did tests. She and site manager fiancé Charisma Agbonlahor… were told police would be called if they did not comply.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: 25th, June 2015 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

The NHS Atlas of Risk: ‘Low Fruit And Vegetables’ Worse Than Murder And Drugs

THE NHS Atlas of Risk will tell you the chanes of dying from various things:

This atlas will help you to put health risks and death rates into perspective.


Screen shot 2014-10-08 at 12.43.42


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Posted: 8th, October 2014 | In: Reviews | Comment (1) | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Look At The 232 Teeth Medics Pulled From A Teenager’s Mouth



ON the bright side, Ashik Gavai, 17, from Buldhana, India, has no ambition to be a reality TV star or song-contest judge? Had he wanted those showbiz dreams, cosmetic dentists at LA’s Nip ‘n’ Tuck surgeries would have been bleaching each of his 232 extra teeth, not pulling them out.

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Posted: 25th, July 2014 | In: Strange But True | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Beer, Oh Happy Produce Of Our Isle – And Good For Us Too!

Inn Keeper Brown, right, 47-year-old ex-service man of an unidentified English village, used the toy gun he is holding to help capture the crew of a German bomber forced down, July 12, 1940. Brown sold a two-weeks’ supply of beer and all to those who came to listen to the. (AP Photo)

Inn Keeper Brown, right, 47-year-old ex-service man of an unidentified English village, used the toy gun he is holding to help capture the crew of a German bomber forced down, July 12, 1940. Brown sold a two-weeks supply of beer and all to those who came to listen to the. (AP Photo)


THE Mail brings us the glorious news that beer is actually good for us:

Mine’s a pint: Full of vitamins, high in fibre, low on sugar and good for your hair – the benefits of beer
Beer is being hailed for its health benefits and vitamin levels
Research suggests drinking beer might help prevent Alzheimer’s
Hops have ‘aphrodisiac-like qualities’ and could balance hormones
Contains minerals including phosphorus, iodine, magnesium and potassium

Well, yes, aphrodisiac qualities: who has not suffered from beer goggles at one time or another? But those health effects are quite true and some of us have the bellies to prove that we’ve known this for decades.

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Posted: 8th, July 2014 | In: Money | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

New Lungs, iWatch Heart Attack Predictors Are Parts of Human Cyborgization

Surgeons operating on Professor Kevin Warwick at Oxford's Radcliffe Infirmary (Hospital) after his operation to place a mirochip in his arm. Surgeons have carried out a ground-breaking operation on a cybernetics professor so that his nervous system can be wired up to a computer. Professor Kevin Warwick, the world's first cyborg part human, part machine hopes that readings can now be taken from the implant in his arm of electrical impulses coursing through his nerves. These signals, encoding movements like wiggling fingers and feelings like shock and pain, will be transmitted to a computer and recorded for the first time. It is hoped that the procedure could lead to a medical breakthrough for people paralysed by spinal cord damage, like Superman actor Christopher Reeve.

Surgeons operating on Professor Kevin Warwick at Oxford’s Radcliffe Infirmary (Hospital) after his operation to place a mirochip in his arm. Surgeons have carried out a ground-breaking operation on a cybernetics professor so that his nervous system can be wired up to a computer. Professor Kevin Warwick, the world’s first cyborg part human, part machine hopes that readings can now be taken from the implant in his arm of electrical impulses coursing through his nerves. These signals, encoding movements like wiggling fingers and feelings like shock and pain, will be transmitted to a computer and recorded for the first time. March 2002.


THIS all sounds good: Apple Wants The iWatch To Predict Heart Attacks. “What if your wristwatch could tell you that you were about to have a heart attack? You’d be able to chew some aspirin to prevent it. You’d be able to call 911 and get the ambulance on the way. You’d be more likely to survive. Perhaps a large portion of the 600,000 people who die of heart disease every year — would not.”

And “for the first time, scientists have created human lungs in a lab — an exciting step forward in regenerative medicine, but an advance that likely won’t help patients for many years.”

Are human being becoming cyborgs?

The cyborgization of people with health issues, of course, is already under way. Diet computers are already in use. Some even weigh food before you eat it, and calculate its calories, fat content, etc. (I don’t use one of those, but I do use a Polar heart rate monitor when I run, so that I can keep track of my heart rate and make sure I’m not slacking off. As far as I know, nobody’s integrated the exercise computer with the diet computer to keep track of both calories consumed and calories burned in one device, but I may have missed it.) Then, of course, there are computerized insulin pumps that take the place of a pancreas by automatically releasing small amounts of insulin — some according to computerized blood sugar models not too terribly different in concept from the blood-gas models used by dive computers. The most sophisticated personal computerized medical devices today are probably the implantable cardioverter defibrillators that monitor heart rhythms and administer a shock if the owner’s heart stops or goes into fibrillation.

Praise be the engineers…

Posted: 18th, February 2014 | In: Technology | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0

Indonesia Continues To Shackle Mental Health Patients

DON’T be ill in Indonesia. In these picrures, mental health patients are chained to the floor at a mental rehabilitation centre run by an Islamic boarding school in Tulungagung, East Java. Thousands of Indonesians with mental health issues are spending their lives in shackles or chain due to the lack of psychiatric services for the poor.

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Would you shackle cancer patients?

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Posted: 31st, October 2013 | In: Reviews | Comment | Comments RSS feed:RSS 2.0