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January 29, 2009, 6:21 AM CT

Weight loss reduces urinary incontinence

Weight loss reduces urinary incontinence
Reducing urinary incontinence can now be added to the extensive list of health benefits of weight loss, as per a clinical trial funded by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) and the Office of Research on Women's Health (ORWH), both part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The paper reporting the results of the trial would be reported in the January 29 issue of the New England Journal (NEJM)

The Program to Reduce Incontinence by Diet and Exercise (PRIDE), conducted in Birmingham, Alabama, and Providence, Rhode Island, recruited a total of 338 obese and overweight women who leaked urine at least 10 times per week. The women were randomly assigned to either an intensive six-month weight-loss program of diet, exercise and behavior modification or to a group that received information about diet and exercise, but no training to help them change habits.

The researchers report that women in the intensive weight-loss group lost an average 8 percent of their body weight (about 17 pounds) and reduced weekly urinary incontinence episodes by nearly one-half (47 percent). In contrast, women in the information-only group lost an average 1.6 percent of body weight (about 3 pounds) and had 28 percent fewer episodes.

"Clearly, weight loss can have a significant, positive impact on urinary incontinence, a finding that may help motivate weight loss, which has additional health benefits such as preventing type 2 diabetes," said NIDDK Director Griffin P. Rodgers, M.D.........

Posted by: JoAnn      Read more         Source


January 29, 2009, 6:19 AM CT

Our senior citizens living longer but on less

Our senior citizens living longer but on less
"This is a wakeup call for America: Congress must act now to ensure economic stability for today's seniors and future generations".

Waltham, MAOlder Americans have experienced huge, negative financial shifts that now make it more difficult to enter retirement with sustainable economic security, a newly released study finds. Seventy-eight percent of all senior households are financially vulnerable when it comes to their ability to meet essential expenses and cover projected costs over their lifetimes.

This is as per the Senior Economic Security Index (SESI), a new research project developed by The Institute on Assets and Social Policy at Brandeis University and Demos, a national public policy and research organization. Single households, African-American households, and Latino households are the most likely groups of seniors to be financially vulnerable.

These sobering stats serve as a wakeup call for younger and middle-aged Americans. Though they are financially vulnerable, today's seniors represent a best-case scenario of having reached retirement under stronger Social Security, better employer-based benefits, and greater opportunities to avoid debt and build assets than future generations will experience.

Particular areas of vulnerability include:........

Posted by: Janet      Read more         Source


January 28, 2009, 6:11 AM CT

Poultry disease and its risks to human health

Poultry disease and its risks to human health
When bacteria contain the DNA plasmid pAPEC-1, they produce a powerful toxin that kills other bacteria. The top spot and bottom spot both contain pAPEC-1, creating a lysis zone where no other bacteria can grow within the area. The spot in the middle of the plate contains no pAPEC-1, allowing bacteria to grow and surround the spot.

Credit: The Biodesign Institute, Arizona State University

Biodesign Institute at Arizona State University associate research scientist Melha Mellata, a member of professor Roy Curtiss' team, is leading a USDA funded project to develop a vaccine against a leading poultry disease called avian pathogenic E. coli (APEC).

APEC is part of a large, diverse group of microbes called extra-intestinal pathogenic E. coli (ExPEC). They cause many complex brain, lung and urinary tract diseases in human, animals, and birds. There is also considerable concern in the scientific community that APEC strains are becoming an emergent food pathogen. The poultry products are a suspected source of a suite of ExPEC infections, including those causing human disease.

The U.S. is the leading poultry industry in the world at an annual value of more than $50 billion, and E. coli infections are a big threat, causing millions in losses for the industry. As per the USDA, the two most common types of poultry infections are from the bacteria E. coli and Salmonella.

Antibiotics have long been the first line of defense to prevent APEC, but have lost their potency, as the bacteria have grown increasingly resistant to therapy.

How these microbes cause disease is poorly understood. Mellata and his colleagues in the institute's Center for Infectious Diseases and Vaccinology, led by Roy Curtiss, have been hard at work to understand the molecular tricks these bacteria use to evade a host's immune system.........

Posted by: Janet      Read more         Source


January 28, 2009, 6:09 AM CT

Will acupuncture relieve your pain?

Will acupuncture relieve your pain?
The pain relieving effects of acupuncture compared with placebo are small and seem to lack clinical relevance, as per a research studypublished on bmj.com today.

Scientists at the Nordic Cochrane Centre in Copenhagen analysed evidence from thirteen acupuncture pain trials involving over 3,000 patients. The trials compared three arms of therapy (real acupuncture, placebo or 'pretend' acupuncture or no acupuncture) for a broad range of common conditions such as knee osteoarthritis, migraine, low back pain and post-operative pain.

Before the analysis, differences in study design and quality were taken into account to minimise bias.

They found a small analgesic effect of real acupuncture in comparison to placebo acupuncture. This corresponded to a reduction in pain levels of about 4mm on a 100mm pain scoring scale. A 10mm reduction on this scale is classed as 'minimal' or 'little change' so the apparent analgesic effect of acupuncture seems to be below a clinically relevant pain improvement, say the authors.

They found a moderate difference between placebo acupuncture and no acupuncture (10mm on a 100mm pain scoring scale), but the effect of placebo acupuncture varied considerably. Some large trials reported effects of placebo that were of clear clinical relevance (24mm), whereas other large trials found effects that seemed clinically irrelevant (5mm).........

Posted by: Janet      Read more         Source


January 27, 2009, 6:25 AM CT

Differences in thinking styles

Differences in thinking styles
Consumers approach problems, products, and websites differently as per distinct thinking styles, says a newly released study in the Journal of Consumer Research

Authors Thomas P. Novak and Donna L. Hoffman (both University of California, Riverside) say consumers tend to think either rationally or experientially and marketers should design experiences for consumers that allow a good fit between the style and the task.

The authors describe rational thinking as "logical, effortful, and analytic," and experiential thinking as "associative, lower effort, and holistic." Examples of rational activities include work, carefully considered decisions, and goal-directed tasks, while experiential activities include playing, browsing, and impulse buying.

The authors developed a measure called the Situation-Specific-Thinking-Style measure (SSTS), which measured and predicted study participants' performance on many tasks, including vocabulary and geometry problems (rational) or activities such as suggesting ways to improve toys or websites (experiential).

"We observed that people who reported thinking rationally performed better on rational tasks, and people who reported thinking experientially performed better on experiential tasks," explain the authors. "In addition, the 'wrong type' of thinking actually hurt performance. People who approached a vocabulary or an IQ test problem in an experiential, intuitive manner actually had fewer correct answers than those who approached the problem logically."........

Posted by: JoAnn      Read more         Source


January 27, 2009, 6:24 AM CT

Huge burden of diabetes

Huge burden of diabetes
In the United States, nearly 13 percent of adults age 20 and older have diabetes, but 40 percent of them have not been diagnosed, as per epidemiologists from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), whose study includes newly available data from an Oral Glucose Tolerance Test (OGTT). Diabetes is particularly common in the elderly: nearly one-third of those age 65 and older have the disease. An additional 30 percent of adults have pre-diabetes, a condition marked by elevated blood sugar that is still not in the diabetic range. The scientists report these findings in the February 2009 issue of Diabetes Care, which posted a pre-print version of the article online at http://diabetes.org/diabetescare.

The study compared the results of two national surveys that included a fasting blood glucose (FBG) test and 2-hour glucose reading from an OGTT. The OGTT gives more information about blood glucose abnormalities than the FBG test, which measures blood glucose after an overnight fast. The FBG test is easier and less costly than the OGTT, but the 2-hour test is more sensitive in identifying diabetes and pre-diabetes, particularly in older people. Two-hour glucose readings that are high but still not diabetic indicate a greater risk of cardiovascular disease and of developing diabetes than a high, but still not diabetic, fasting glucose level.........

Posted by: JoAnn      Read more         Source


January 26, 2009, 11:28 PM CT

Was it the chicken salad you ate or a bad swim?

Was it the chicken salad you ate or a bad swim?
A newly released study finds swimming, having a private well or septic system, and other factors not involving food consumption were major risk factors for bacterial intestinal infections not occurring in outbreaks.

Outbreaks associated with food, such as the current Salmonella outbreak involving peanut butter that has sickened more than 500 people in 43 states, account for only about 10 percent of intestinal infections, which are medically termed as enteric infections. The newly released study, in the February 15 issue of The Journal of Infectious Diseases, now available online, suggests that methods for controlling bacterial enteric outbreaks may not be completely relevant to controlling the other 90 percent or so that occur sporadically.

In a USDA-sponsored, two-year study of children and adolescents in three Washington state counties, the investigators, led by Donna M. Denno, MD, MPH, of the University of Washington, and Phillip I. Tarr, MD, of Washington University, St. Louis, interviewed 296 patients, aged 19 years or less, who were infected at some point between 2003 and 2005 and who were matched with 580 uninfected controls. Laboratory tests identified the bacteria responsible for infection as Campylobacter in 151 cases, Salmonella in 86 cases, Escherichia coli O157 in 39 cases, and Shigella in 20 cases.........

Posted by: Mark      Read more         Source


January 26, 2009, 11:26 PM CT

School children who receive more recess

School children who receive more recess
School children who receive more recess behave better and are likely to learn more, as per a large study of third-graders conducted by scientists at Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University.

The study, published in Pediatrics, suggests that a daily break of 15 minutes or more in the school day may play a role in improving learning, social development, and health in elementary school children. The study's principal investigator is Romina M. Barros, M.D., assistant clinical professor of pediatrics at Einstein.

Dr. Barros looked at data on approximately 11,000 third-graders enrolled in the national Early Childhood Longitudinal Study. The children, ages 8 to 9, were divided into two categories: those with no or minimal recess (less than 15 minutes a day) and those with more than 15 minutes a day. There were an equal number of boys and girls. The children's classroom behavior was assessed by their teachers using a questionnaire.

As per the American Academy of Pediatrics, free, unstructured play is essential for keeping children healthy, and for helping them reach important social, emotional, and cognitive developmental milestones. Unstructured play also helps kids manage stress and become resilient.

However, some studies indicate that children are getting less and less unstructured playtime, a trend exacerbated by the 2001 No Child Left Behind Act. "A number of schools responded to No Child Left Behind by reducing the time for recess, the creative arts, and physical education in an effort to focus on reading and mathematics," says Dr. Barros.........

Posted by: JoAnn      Read more         Source


January 26, 2009, 11:23 PM CT

Not just cutting that salt

Not just cutting that salt
Most people know that too much sodium from foods can increase blood pressure.

A newly released study suggests that people trying to lower their blood pressure should also boost their intake of potassium, which has the opposite effect to sodium.

Scientists observed that the ratio of sodium-to-potassium in subjects' urine was a much stronger predictor of cardiovascular disease than sodium or potassium alone.

"There isn't as much focus on potassium, but potassium seems to be effective in lowering blood pressure and the combination of a higher intake of potassium and lower consumption of sodium seems to be more effective than either on its own in reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease," said Dr. Paul Whelton, senior author of the study in the January 2009 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine. Whelton is an epidemiologist and president and CEO of Loyola University Health System.

Scientists determined average sodium and potassium intake during two phases of a study known as the Trials of High blood pressure Prevention. They collected 24-hour urine samples intermittently during an 18-month period in one trial and during a 36-month period in a second trial. The 2,974 study participants initially aged 30-to-54 and with blood pressure readings just under levels considered high, were followed for 10-15 years to see if they would develop cardiovascular disease. Whelton was national chair of the Trials of High blood pressure Prevention.........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source


January 26, 2009, 6:10 AM CT

Shoulder injuries in high school athletes

Shoulder injuries in high school athletes
(COLUMBUS, Ohio)Eventhough shoulder injuries accounted for just 8 percent of all injuries sustained by high school athletes, shoulder injuries were relatively common in predominately male sports such as baseball (18 percent of all injuries), wrestling (18 percent) and football (12 percent). Moreover, boys experienced higher shoulder injury rates than girls, especially in soccer and baseball/softball.

Player-to-player contact was linked to nearly 60 percent of high school athletes' shoulder injuries from 2005 through 2007, as per a research studyreported in the online issue of the Journal of Athletic Training and conducted by scientists in the Center for Injury Research and Policy of The Research Institute at Nationwide Children's Hospital. This is the first study to examine shoulder injuries across sports in a nationally representative sample of U.S. high school athletes.

"Shoulder injuries were far more likely to occur in football and wrestling than in any other sport," explained the study's author Ellen Yard, MPH, research associate in the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children's Hospital. "Shoulder injuries were also three times more likely to occur in competition in comparison to practice".

The most common shoulder injuries included sprains and strains (37 percent), dislocations and separations (24 percent), contusions (12 percent) and fractures (7 percent). Surgery was mandatory for 6 percent of shoulder injuries. Dislocations and separations accounted for more than half of all shoulder surgeries.........

Posted by: Janet      Read more         Source



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Did you know?
Adolescents who suffer physical injuries are vulnerable to emotional distress in the months following their hospitalization, yet almost 40 percent of hospitalized adolescents interviewed for a new study had no source for the follow-up medical care that could diagnose and treat symptoms of post-traumatic stress. These young trauma survivors are at risk for high levels of post-traumatic stress and depressive symptoms, as well as high levels of alcohol use, according to research by researchers at the Harborview Injury Prevention and Research Center.

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