Why is pain important?

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By , November 19, 2012 11:44 am

Steve has never felt pain, he’s never had a headache or hurt himself falling over or stubbing his toe. He has congenital analgesia, a lack of the neural pathways that register the important feeling of pain.

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Pain is an important signal sent by the brain to act as warning and sign that the body is at risk of injury. Without these signals, extensive and prolonged damage to tissue can occur which may result in significant damage or even death.

Meet The Superhumans

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By , July 18, 2012 8:34 am

As the buzz about the Olympics continues to grow, it’s great to see that the Paralympics is getting a promotional push too. In many ways, these athletes are more impressive than their Olympic counterparts and this video goes a long way to show how. Fantastic stuff.

A Doctor’s Touch – TED.com

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By , June 5, 2012 11:45 am

Modern medicine is in danger of losing a powerful, old-fashioned tool: human touch. Physician and writer Abraham Verghese describes our strange new world where patients are merely data points, and calls for a return to the traditional one-on-one physical exam.

“White coat effect” worse than first thought

By , May 8, 2010 10:12 am

The ‘white-coat’ effect – where blood pressure rises during a check by a doctor – is even worse in someone whose level is already high, researchers say.

Writing in the British Medical Journal, an Australian team say giving people a cuff to wear for 24 hours is a better way of checking blood pressure, as it heps to reduce the stress and anxiety of the examination.

The researchers monitored over 8,500 patients who were being assessed at 11 blood pressure clinics around Australia. They compared ambulatory blood pressure measurements with those taken by doctors and nurses and found that there can be a difference of as much as 29 units if a doctor checked it, compared with a rise of 17 units if a nurse took the measurement.

The differences also varied depending on the sex and age of the patient.

However, the study also found that the closer the patient’s blood pressure to normal levels, the less of a difference between measurements taken by ambulatory monitoring and those taken by a nurse or doctor.

Professor Graham MacGregor, chairman of the Blood Pressure Association, said: “This is interesting research which clearly illustrates how external factors such as environment and who is checking blood pressure can have a significant impact on blood pressure readings.

“Many people feel slightly anxious when going to see a doctor, which is why we have always encouraged blood pressure measuring at home as well as in the clinic, and promotes the use of home blood pressure monitors and ambulatory testing where indicated.

Read the full article at http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/8667638.stm

Bowel Cancer Awareness Week 2010

By , April 19, 2010 4:45 pm

Bowel cancer affects 1 in 18 people and kills 50 people every single day. The typical age of onset is over 50 but you can still suffer from bowel cancer if you are younger. But with early diagnosis it can be beaten…check out Miles’s story of how he beat bowel cancer and help us spread the word.

To find out more about the signs and symptoms of bowel cancer, visit the NHS Choices website.

National Self Harm Networking needs volunteers

By , March 29, 2010 10:17 am

National Self Harm Network Logo

We’ve recently been contacted by The National Self Harm Network who are looking for Nottingham-based volunteers to help man their new national freephone helpline for those who self harm, their friends, family and carers.

It is initially operating between the hours of 7pm and 11pm seven days a week. They require volunteers to commit to one shift per week. Volunteers will receive extensive training from both NSHN and external partners. The helpline is well supervised. All travel expenses within the Nottingham area will be refunded.

Volunteers will be asked to attend an informal interview and recruitment day prior to being offered a place. All volunteers will be required to provide an enhanced Criminal Records Bureau check which will be paid for by NSHN. As well as listening volunteers they’re also looking to recruit several volunteer supervisors who will be required to have undergone previous relevant training.

If you think you have what it takes to offer a supportive and empathetic listening ear to individuals who may be in crisis and can commit some of your time then they’d like to hear from you.

For further information and an application form for all posts please contact the NSHN on info@nshn.co.uk or phone 01158 524027 and leave your name, number and email address.

Change4Life ‘Alfie’ TV ad

By , March 19, 2010 8:45 pm

Great new ad for the Department of Health’s Change4Life campaign.

Find out more at the Change4Life website.

Osteopathic care may ease late-pregnancy back pain

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By , February 11, 2010 1:57 pm

A study published in the January 2010 American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology suggests that osteopathy can help relieve back pain in the latter stages of pregnancy.

Osteopathic manipulation may particularly benefit pregnant women seeking medication-free back pain relief, note Dr. John C. Licciardone and colleagues at University of Texas Health Science Center in Fort Worth.

The study  included 144 otherwise healthy pregnant women, about 24 years old on average, with moderate levels of back pain and related movement difficulties during late pregnancy. The women were randomly assigned to one of three groups: usual obstetric care only, usual obstetric care plus weekly 30-minute osteopathic manipulation treatments from the 30th week of pregnancy through delivery, or usual obstetric care plus sham ultrasound skin stimulation sessions.

Over the course of the study, women in the osteopathic group reported improved back pain and related symptoms, Licciardone noted. The sham ultrasound group reported no pain improvement and those in the standard care group reported increased pain. However, none of these differences were statistically significant.

Late pregnancy back-related movement problems generally worsened until delivery, but did so to a lesser degree in the osteopathic manipulation group.

Overall, these results suggest osteopathic manipulation may compliment conventional obstetric care, Licciardone and colleagues conclude. They call for further, larger investigations to assess the benefits and costs of this form of combined care.

Source:  http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20100210/hl_nm/us_osteopathic_care

Embarrassing Bodies – 3rd February 2010

By , February 4, 2010 10:05 am

So the Channel 4 program Embarrassing Bodies‘ is back for a new series and it kicked off last night with the usual collection of cringe-worthy conditions and demonstrations of questionable personal healthcare!

Some highlights of last night’s programme included a rather unfortunate chap suffering from Peyronie’s Disease, a young lady with tubular breasts and a look at flatulence.

Peyronie’s Disease is a condition which causes the penis to bend on erection. It can be very painful and affect a man’s performance in bed which brings with it all kinds of psychological problems. It typically first appears around age 55 and is said to affect approximately 1 – 3 out of 100 men. First appearing as a lump on the shaft of the penis, this can develop into an area of hardened tissue which causes the bend. Treatment is by medication or surgery which remove the immediate ‘plaque’ but may not offer a long-term solution. Find out more about Peyronie’s Disease at http://www.peyronies.org/.

Tubular breast syndrome is a congenital deformity of the breast that manifests at the onset of puberty, caused by the incomplete development of the breast’s mammary gland. The breasts have a characteristic tubular shape and are often asymmetrical. Here’s a clip from the show:

Contraception: Worth Talking About

By , January 24, 2010 8:10 pm

The NHS have recently launched a new range of TV ads aimed at 16-24 year olds, discussing issues from contraception to sexually transmitted diseases. The ads themselves are really well put together, with an original style that works really well.

Here the contraception ad:

The accompanying Worth Talking About website can be found here.

The information provided on this website is for use as information purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical care by a qualified doctor or other qualified healthcare professional. We do not warrant that any information included within this site will meet your health or medical requirements. This Health Network website does not provide any medical or diagnostic services so you should always check with a health professional if you have any concerns about your health.

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