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InfoMedSearch 2006 Archives
A Surprising Secret to a Long Life: Stay in School "The one social factor that researchers agree is consistently linked to longer lives in every country where it has been studied is education. It is more important than race; it obliterates any effects of income. … And, health economists say, those factors that are popularly believed to be crucial — money and health insurance, for example, pale in comparison. … Instead, Dr. Smith and others say, what may make the biggest difference is keeping young people in school. A few extra years of school is associated with extra years of life and vastly improved health decades later, in old age."
Association of daytime napping and Parkinsonian signs in Alzheimer's disease (Sleep Medicine 2006) "Excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS) is reported in Alzheimer's disease (AD), with unstable sleep–wake rhythms that worsen with advancing disease stage. EDS is also very common in Parkinson's disease (PD), regardless of disease severity. … AD patients with more reported daytime napping had more Parkinsonian motor signs, suggesting that this subgroup may have an increased propensity for sleepiness resembling PD."
Big bellies tied to greater heart disease risk "The more your belly sticks out, the greater your risk of developing heart disease, a new study shows. … In the current study, Iribarren and his team tested whether sagittal abdominal diameter, or SAD, which is the distance from the back to the upper abdomen midway between the top of the pelvis and the bottom of the ribs, would improve the accuracy of BMI in predicting heart disease risk. … The relationship between SAD and heart disease risk was strongest among the youngest men and women, which is not surprising, Iribarren said, given that people who develop central obesity younger in life would likely have more serious problems."
Carotenoids as protection against sarcopenia in older adults. (Arch Biochem Biophys. 2006) " Sarcopenia, or loss of muscle mass and strength, plays a major role in the disablement process in older adults and increases the risk of impaired physical performance, falls, physical disability, frailty, and death. Oxidative stress is a major mechanism implicated in the pathogenesis of sarcopenia; aging muscle shows increased oxidative damage to DNA, protein, and lipids. Carotenoids quench free radicals, reduce damage from reactive oxygen species, and appear to modulate redox-sensitive transcription factors such as NF-kappaB that are involved in the upregulation of IL-6 and other proinflammatory cytokines."
Neurological Symptoms in Type A Aortic Dissections. (Stroke. 2006) " CONCLUSIONS: Aortic dissections might be missed in patients with neurological symptoms but without pain. Neurological findings in elderly hypertensive patients with asymmetrical pulses or cardiac murmur suggest dissection. Especially in patients considered for thrombolytic therapy in acute stroke further diagnostics is essential. Neurological symptoms are not necessarily associated with increased mortality."
Parkinson's Disease: Diagnosis and Treatment (Am Fam Physician 2006) "The cardinal physical signs of the disease are distal resting tremor, rigidity, bradykinesia, and asymmetric onset. Levodopa is the primary treatment for Parkinson's disease; however, its long-term use is limited by motor complications and drug-induced dyskinesia. Dopamine agonists are options for initial treatment and have been shown to delay the onset of motor complications. However, dopamine agonists are inferior to levodopa in controlling motor symptoms. After levodopa-related motor complications develop in advanced Parkinson's disease, it is beneficial to initiate adjuvant therapy with dopamine agonists, catechol O-methyltransferase inhibitors, or monoamine oxidase-B inhibitors. Deep brain stimulation of the subthalamic nucleus has been shown to ameliorate symptoms in patients with advanced disease."
[Pregnancy in obese patients: which risks is it necessary to fear?] (Gynecol Obstet Fertil. 2006) " DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSION: Our study confirms that obesity is responsible for major obstetrical complications, for what should no doubt be considered as high risk pregnancies. Our practices must take these complications into account by ensuring an adapted and early management in order to improve maternal and neonatal issues."
Psychological Approach Helps Back Pain "Most people suffer from low back painback pain at some point in their lives, but people with long-lasting pain often get little relief from the most widely recommended treatments. Now a new research review shows that focusing on the mind may be the best approach to treating the back for many people with chronic low back pain. … Biofeedback allows people to learn to control body functions such as heart rate and muscle tension. Cognitive behavioral therapy teaches people ways to think and act to help cope with pain."
Study Shows Patients with Herniated Disks Improve Over Time – Even without Surgery "National Institutes of Health, gives doctors and patients reason to reconsider surgery when planning treatment for herniated disks. In the 13-center study of candidates for lumbar diskectomy, researchers found that those who forwent surgery for nonoperative care fared similarly to those who had the surgery. In general, surgery patients experienced slightly more improvement over the study period, and particularly in the first 3 months, than those who opted for other treatments."
Inflammation and Oxidative Stress
How your diet can help fight inflammation "A mostly plant-based diet with plenty of vegetables, fruits, whole grains and beans also seems to decrease inflammation. Studies link a Mediterranean-style diet with lower levels of CRP. Antioxidant vitamins like vitamin C in these foods could interact with a whole range of protective plant compounds to provide protection. A Mediterranean-style diet also tends to be higher than the typical American diet in omega-3 fat, which is found especially in fish. A healthy balance of omega-3 fat with other fats reduces production of hormone-like substances that stimulate inflammation. Studies also show lower levels of markers of inflammation in those who exercise regularly or don’t smoke. Good dental care that prevents the gum inflammation known as gingivitis may even help to reduce overall body inflammation."
Inflammation and cancer: How hot is the link? (Biochem Pharmacol. 2006) "Although inflammation has long been known as a localized protective reaction of tissue to irritation, injury, or infection, characterized by pain, redness, swelling, and sometimes loss of function, there has been a new realization about its role in a wide variety of diseases, including cancer. While acute inflammation is a part of the defense response, chronic inflammation can lead to cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular, pulmonary, and neurological diseases. Several pro-inflammatory gene products have been identified that mediate a critical role in suppression of apoptosis, proliferation, angiogenesis, invasion, and metastasis. … The current review describes in detail the critical link between inflammation and cancer."
Inflammatory networks in ageing, age-related diseases and longevity. (Mech Ageing Dev. 2006) "Inflammation is considered a response set by the tissues in response to injury elicited by trauma or infection. It is a complex network of molecular and cellular interactions that facilitates a return to physiological homeostasis and tissue repair. The individual response against infection and trauma is also determined by gene variability. Ageing is accompanied by chronic low-grade inflammation state clearly showed by 2-4-fold increase in serum levels of inflammatory mediators. … These findings point to a strong relationship between the genetics of inflammation, successful ageing and the control of cardiovascular disease at least in men, in which these studies were performed."
Low-grade inflammation in chronic infectious diseases: paradigm of periodontal infections. (Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2006) " The importance of periodontal infections to systemic health is further strengthened by pilot intervention trials indicating that periodontal therapy may improve surrogate cardiovascular outcomes, such as endothelial function, and may reduce four- to fivefold the incidence of premature birth. Nevertheless, further research is needed to fully discern the underlying mechanisms by which local chronic infections can have an impact on systemic health, and in this endeavor periodontal disease may serve as an ideal disease model."
New study reignites theory that CRP causes heart disease "A new study has shown associations among C-reactive protein (CRP) gene variants, plasma CRP levels, and cardiovascular risk in older adults, reigniting suggestions that CRP could play a causative role in heart disease ."
Postprandial anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects of extra virgin olive oil (Atherosclerosis 2006) "These data reinforce the notion that the Mediterranean diet reduces the incidence of coronary heart disease partially due to the protective role of its phenolic components, including those of extra virgin olive oil."
Carcinogenic Diagnosis "CT scans use multiple x-rays to create three-dimensional images that are diagnostically useful but expose people to far more radiation than conventional x-rays. In fact, one CT scan exposes a patient to the lower range of radiation received by some Nagasaki bombing survivors. Up to one in a thousand patients will develop cancer from this exposure. Sixty million CT scans a year will thus cause cancer in thousands of people. Yet most consent forms are silent about this."
Hospital Rating May Not Show Death Rate "New research offers this warning to consumers shopping for top-notch hospitals: Many that are highly rated by government regulators only have marginally lower patient death rates."
How long do nosocomial pathogens persist on inanimate surfaces? A systematic review (BMC Infectious Diseases 2006) "Most gram-positive bacteria, such as Enterococcus spp. (including VRE), Staphylococcus aureus (including MRSA), or Streptococcus pyogenes, survive for months on dry surfaces. Many gram-negative species, such as Acinetobacter spp., Escherichia coli, Klebsiella spp., Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Serratia marcescens, or Shigella spp., can also survive for months. … The most common nosocomial pathogens may well survive or persist on surfaces for months and can thereby be a continuous source of transmission if no regular preventive surface disinfection is performed."
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