Live Support
When Should You Turn Off Your Internal Defibrillator?
When Should You Turn Off Your Internal Defibrillator?
Article Rating :
0 votes
Article Author : edebruin (289 days ago)

If you have suffered from a heart attack, heart disease or any other similar cardio or heart health related problem, you may have been fitted with an internal defibrillator. These tiny devices are around the size of a matchbox and are implanted into the chest. When the heart stops beating, this is detected by the clever device, which fires a jolt of electricity into the heart in order to kickstart it again.

Designed to save lives, these tiny devices can greatly increase the wellness and wellbeing of cardio patients, and can help to save lives, as they jolt the body back into life instantly, rather than requiring others to get the patient to hospital in time.

There are instances, however, when such a device can be a curse rather than a blessing, such as when someone has reached old age and a natural point of death. If they are still fitted with one of these devices, it can actually lead to a long, drawn-out and extremely distressing death, as every time the body reaches a natural point of death, the device will then shock it back into existence again. There have been instances where distressed patients have received up to 30 shocks in the moments before their death.

Patients are now being advised to think carefully about when would be the right time to have their devices switched off, in order to avoid this kind of scenario. Hospices don’t have the ability to switch these off at the time of death as it requires specialist equipment that is only available in a number of hospitals.

With these devices being implanted under the collarbone of around 9,000 people every year, the implications of their effect in later life is one that needs to be seriously considered.

Allergies And Asthma

Could Colds During Pregnancy Lead To Child As...
Studies suggest that mothers who catch a cold during pregnancy could be more likely to have children who develop asthma, as the bacteria and viruses affect the in-utero environment. Babies who are exposed to the allergens are more likely to become sensitive to them and this could affect them later in life, according to researchers. The new study, which examined the risk of the common cold to unborn children, shows that women who are pregnant should take extra precautions around people who have colds and are sneezing, as it could lead to problems for their children later in life. The mothers infections and bacterial exposure during the pregnancy leads to the environment in the womb being altered. Allergist Dr Mitch Grayson stated that in addition to this, the same children in the study who had early exposure to allergens, including house dust and pet hair, also had increased odds of becoming sensitive by the age of five. When dust mites from the mother and the child’s mattresses were analysed, children with high dust mite exposure yet low bacteria exposure were more likely to develop allergies to dust mites than those with low dust mite exposure and high bacteria exposure.   Researchers looked at 513 pregnant women in Germany, and their 526 children. The women completed questionnaires during the pregnancy, when the children were 3 and 12 months old, and then every year up until the children reached five years old. Of the families, 61 per cent of them had a parent with asthma, hay fever or atopic dermatitis. According to the ACAAI, asthma and allergies can be hereditary; if both parents have allergies, the child is as much as 75 per cent more likely to be allergic. If just one parent is allergic, or if a close relative has allergies, then the child has a 30 to 40 per cent chance of developing some form of allergy. This drops to just 10 to 15 per cent if neither parent has an allergy. Researchers claim that they now know for certain that allergies and asthma can develop in the womb, as genetics play an important factor in both diseases. However, this study sheds light on how the environment a mother creates during pregnancy can begin to affect the child before it’s even been born. Asthma is the most common potentially serious medical condition to complicate pregnancy, according to the ACAAI.   Asthma affects around 1 in 12 women during their childbearing years, and when women with asthma become pregnant, one third of the patients improve, one third get worse, and one third remain unchanged. Asthma is a serious condition which affects a number of people and has numerous triggers, including house mites, dust, pollen and pollution. As pollution and toxins in the air have increased over the years, the risk of developing respiratory diseases has also increased. There are ways to treat asthma and, depending on the severity of the condition, your child may require medication to maintain it. If you're concerned about the risk colds and asthma have to your baby, or think your child is developing symptoms of asthma, you should seek advice from your GP as soon as possible. As with any pregnancy, it's important to stay as healthy as possible, maintain a balanced diet which includes all the nutrients both you and your baby need, and get enough exercise; you should also avoid alcohol and smoking, to maintain good health for both you and your baby.
Could Second-Hand Smoke Be Damaging Your Chil...
A new study has found that the health concerns associated with the wellness and wellbeing of children who live with smokers could be more serious than previously thought. A shocking report shows that children who are exposed to cigarette smoke at home do not respond as well to asthma treatment as those who live with non-smoking parents in a non-smoking household.   Children who are regularly exposed to cigarette smoke had lower levels of an enzyme that helps them to respond to the main asthma treatments. This report was published in a journal called Chest recently.   This is bad news, as the number of children in the UK who have asthma is on the increase. Over a million children in this country are believed to be suffering from asthma, and they are most commonly treated by steroids and inhalers. For some patients, however, these treatments are not totally effective, leaving them unprotected from harm in the event of an attack.   It is now known that passive smoke can not only worsen the symptoms of asthma in children, but can actually impair their response to treatments in the form of inhaled steroids. It is not yet known how or why this effect occurs.   Researchers into the subject have found that children who have severe asthma, and parents who smoke at home, have a lower level of an enzyme called HDAC2, especially when compared like for like with children who do not have smoking parents.   This enzyme – HDAC2 – is required in the human body to help it benefit from steroids, and to allow them to exert their anti-inflammatory type effects over the symptoms of asthma.   To come to this conclusion, researchers looked at a group of 19 children who were suffering from severe asthma. Nine of the children in the group had a parent who smoked whilst ten of the children had parents who were non smokers.


Death rates from pancreatic cancer predicted ...
    Pancreatic cancer is the only cancer for which deaths are predicted to increase in men and women rather than decrease in 2014 and beyond, according to a comprehensive study published in the leading cancer journal Annals of Oncology [1] today.   The study by researchers in Italy and Switzerland shows that the proportion of deaths due to any sort of cancer is expected to fall overall in Europe in 2014. There are some variations between sexes and countries, however, is the only one where increased death rates are predicted for both men and this year.   "Our predictions for 2014 confirm that pancreatic death rates are continuing to increase overall," said Professor Carlo La Vecchia (MD), professor at the Faculty of Medicine, University of Milan (Italy). "This year we predict that 41,300 men and 41,000 women will die from pancreatic cancer – an age standardised rate of 8.0 and 5.6 deaths respectively per 100,000 of the population. This represents a small but steady increase since the beginning of this century; between 2000-2004 death rates from the disease were 7.6 per 100,000 men and 5.0 per 100,000 women.   "The increased death rate is cause for concern, because the prognosis for this tumour is bleak, with less than five percent of pancreatic cancer patients surviving for five years after diagnosis. As so few patients survive, the increase in deaths is very closely related to the increase in incidence of this disease. This makes pancreatic cancer a priority for finding better ways to prevent and control it and better treatments."   Tobacco, obesity, diabetes, high alcohol intake and a family history of pancreatic cancer are all recognised risk factors for the disease. "To date, we have no promising treatment for pancreatic cancer. Prevention remains, therefore, the only possibility, with smoking cessation first, plus control of overweight and diabetes. However, tobacco accounts for less than a third of all cases of pancreatic cancer, and all the other causes together account for another ten percent. More work needs to be done to discover other possible causes," said Prof La Vecchia.   The Annals of Oncology study predicts that 742,500 men and 581,100 women will die from cancer in 2014 in the 27 countries of the European Union (EU) [2]. Although the actual absolute numbers have increased when compared with 2009 (the year for which there are World Health Organization mortality data for most EU countries) due to the growing numbers of elderly people, the rate (age-standardised per 100,000 of the population) of people who die from the disease has declined from 148.3 male and 89.1 female deaths per 100,000 in 2009 to 138.1 deaths and 84.7 per 100,000 predicted for 2014. Therefore, since 2009 there has been 7% fall among men and 5% fall among women. [3] "Our predictions for 2014 confirm the overall favourable trends for cancer mortality in the EU. They translate to an overall fall of 26% in men since the peak in cancer deaths in 1988 and a 20% fall in women. When we compare the rates for 2014, when there are more elderly people now than there were in 1988, we have avoided a major rise in mortality rates, with over 250,000 deaths avoided this year," said Prof La Vecchia.   The study looked at cancer rates in the whole of the EU (27 member states as at 2007) and also in the six largest countries – France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain and the UK – for all cancers, and, individually, for stomach, intestines, pancreas, lung, prostate, breast, uterus (including cervix) and leukaemias. This is the fourth consecutive year the researchers have published predicted EU cancer deaths. This year the researchers focused specifically on pancreatic cancer due to its unfavourable trends.   In men, predicted rates for the three major cancers (lung, colorectal and prostate cancer) have fallen by 8%, 4% and 10% respectively since 2009. In women, breast and colorectal cancer death rates will fall by 9% and 7% respectively, but lung cancer death rates will rise by 8%.   "Deaths among men are 63% higher than in women, but they are falling faster, due mainly to the history of different smoking patterns in the two sexes. Lung cancer in men peaked in the late 1980s and has been falling since, while rates of lung cancer continue to rise in women. The generations of women who started smoking in the 1960s and 1970s are now starting to develop . Lung cancer will become the first cause of in European women in the next few years, overtaking breast cancer," said Prof La Vecchia.   "The fall in colorectal cancer in both men and women is largely due to screening, early diagnosis and removal of adenomas at colonoscopy. Improved treatment has also had a role. For prostate cancer, the key reason for the fall in is improved management and treatment, with a possible role played by screening and early diagnosis. For breast cancer, it is largely due to better management and treatment, but screening and early diagnosis have also had an impact."   Co-author Professor Fabio Levi (MD), Head of the Cancer Epidemiology Unit at the Institute of Social and Preventive Medicine, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois and University of Lausanne, (Switzerland), said: "Besides enforcing tobacco control – essentially by increasing taxation – national governments and EU policy makers must ensure that all EU citizens have access to the best screening, diagnosis and treatment, including those from central and eastern Europe where major delays are still observed and where cancer mortality rates tend to be higher as a result."   Professor Paolo Boffetta (MD), the Annals of Oncology associate editor for epidemiology and Director of the Institute of Translational Epidemiology at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York (USA), commented: "These results are extremely important in showing that reducing cancer mortality can be achieved: priority should be given to research in cancers with unfavourable trends, such as pancreatic cancer, and in reducing mortality disparities, both between countries (Central/Eastern versus Western Europe), and within countries, for example, between socioeconomic groups."
Quest win 'a shock'...
By Jessica Aquilina     Carlingford resident Yolandi Franken was crowned Mrs Australia at the Mrs Australia Quest in the Hunter Valley on Saturday.
  The actor, producer and model beat 10 others after scoring highly in a number of categories including health and fitness, swimwear and a Q & A to take the crown in the pageant which raises awareness and funds for ovarian cancer.   The local beauty queen said she was in complete shock when she was named as this year's winner.   "It feels weird," Mrs Franken said.   "We were doing rehearsals the day before and we were learning about how to accept the crown. I wasn't really listening and I was distracted by other things because I didn't think I was going to win.   "When my name was called as the winner, I stood there for a few seconds before it actually clicked that I had won."   But winning the crown was never the top priority for Mrs Franken.   For past three months of the competition, the 32-year-old has been on a mission to promote early diagnosis and screening of cancers.   Mrs Franken knows what it's like when a check-up at becomes life-changing — her own cervical cancer diagnosis has made sure of that.   She has made a video which promotes early detection of cancers.   "I want people to listen to their bodies and if they have any concerns to get checked out," she said.   She will compete in Mrs Multiverse in the Dominican Republic later this year.


Can Yoghurt Be Connected To Lower Diabetes Ri...
The media is always claiming that certain ingredients can help us to maintain a healthy lifestyle and improve our wellbeing. The latest headlines state that yoghurt is key to beating diabetes; a claim based on a study which associates dairy with the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. The study found that the risk of diabetes was significantly lowered by as much as 28 per cent in people who ate large amounts of low-fat yoghurt, compared to people who ate none at all. The results were similar in people who ate more of all low-fat fermented products, including cottage cheese and fromage frais. The study was based on people using food diaries to report their dairy intake around the time of eating, which is one of the best ways to gauge the success of a trial rather than asking people to recall what they’ve eaten throughout the day - it tends to be more accurate. The diaries were only used over a seven-day period (which isn’t a long enough to provide an accurate assessment of whether yoghurt can help with diabetes risks). It’s not currently clear whether fermented low-fat dairy products can help to prevent diabetes, but it is a theory researchers are keen to investigate. There are a number of steps you can take to lower your risk of developing diabetes though, such as regular exercise, eating a balanced healthy diet, quitting smoking and lowering your alcohol intake. It’s also important to note the sugar levels in the foods you eat, as these can contribute towards developing not just diabetes but also obesity. If you're concerned about your diet or weight, it's important to seek advice as this can contribute to a number of health concerns, in addition to diabetes, such as heart problems and certain cancers.   The study was carried out by the University of Cambridge, as part of a larger study funded by the Medical Research Council and Cancer Research UK. Researchers discovered that people who ate the most low-fat fermented products were 24 per cent less likely to develop type 2 diabetes than those who ate the least. The total dairy, high fat dairy, milk and cheese were not associated to the development of diabetes, nor was low-fat dairy. There are several limitations to this study which have led researchers to question whether or not yoghurt can actually help lower the risk of diabetes. Firstly, people’s reported dairy intake was only collected once, at baseline, over a seven-day period, so it’s possible that people’s diets didn’t stay the same during the 11 year follow-up period. Furthermore, the information was self-reported which could affect the reliability. Lastly, researchers didn’t take into account the dairy products included in cooking composite dishes. While there were attempts to take account of other factors, it is always possible that measured and unmeasured factors had an influence on the results. Further studies need to take place in order to know for certain whether fermented products can help to lower the risk of diabetes. The results do suggest that switching sugary snacks and meals for low-fat dairy products could help your overall health, as well as improving your diabetes prospects. Just be sure to choose low sugar varieties and to balance your diet with plenty of fruit and vegetables, grains and lean protein to ensure your body is getting all the nutrients it needs to stay healthy.
The Foot Problems Associated With Diabetes...
Diabetes is a well-known health concern. It’s growing too – type 2 diabetes is one of the fastest growing conditions in the western world, and that’s thought to be due to increasingly bad diets that people have. The increased levels of fat and sugar are very bad for our blood and diabetes is the end result of this. Diabetes famously causes a number of serious health problems and many people worry a lot about it. It is common knowledge that diabetes puts you at risk of having other serious problems, but you may not know that it can be a real burden for your feet. Here is a breakdown of why diabetes can be bad for your feet.   One of the major problems with your feet when you have diabetes is called diabetic neuropathy. What happens when you have this is that you’ll begin to feel a lack of sensation in your feet and your legs. This is often accompanied by a tingling or burning sensation as well as pain and completely numbness in the affected area. The cause of this problem is actually nerve damage that has come about due to the effects of uncontrolled diabetes. The problem is that it leads to a whole range of other issues with your feet such as the inability to move it properly and this can clearly lead to problems walking or doing anything that involves your feet.   There is also another serious condition of the feet that manifests itself due to diabetes. It is called peripheral vascular disease, and it causes poor blood flow that affects the ability of sores or cuts on your feet to heal themselves. Your feet are actually very prone to this kind of problem due to the general wear and tear that daily life places upon them – and unfortunately the lack of ability to heal puts you at very serious risk of gangrene and ulcers.   Apart from these very serious issues with your feet, it’s true that diabetes can be a tertiary cause of other problems with your feet. While these will not be a very dangerous problem on their own, with the threats of diabetes that can develop, these less serious issues become something that could potentially cause you to require surgery or even amputation.   One major issue that you may not think to worry about is athlete’s foot. Athlete’s foot is a fungal infection that can cause itchiness and the break of skin, as we have already seen that diabetic neuropathy is a huge problem with regards to broken skin, it’s easy to see how athlete’s foot can become a very problematic condition.   Aside from conditions like athlete’s foot there are many other smaller problems that we usually wouldn’t worry about that can be a serious issue if you have diabetes and the foot conditions associated with it. Even things as seemingly meaningless as corns, hard skin, dry skin, bunions and blisters can develop into quite horrible concerns for your health.   So how can you avoid these problems and retain a healthy and happy lifestyle despite your diabetes? The first point is that you should always remember to take care of your healthy generally and stay in control of your diabetes. Problems associated with diabetes can only become a concern when you neglect your health. It’s also important that you take care of your feet and check them every day for any potential problems. If you find any then it is essential that you visit your doctor as soon as possible so that you can be prescribed a treatment that will be effective.