All Stories in Health

Thousands are ‘at risk of alcohol death’

Thousands are ‘at risk of alcohol death’

Poor alcohol regulation could cost up to 250,000 lives in England and Wales over the next 20 years, doctors warn.Writing in The Lancet, leading liver disease specialists say measures including a minimum price of 50p per unit are urgently needed. They also said the coalition …

Protein in brain linked to autism

Protein in brain linked to autism

Scientists have shown how a single protein may trigger autistic spectrum disorders by stopping effective communication between brain cells.The team from Duke University in North Carolina created autistic mice by mutating the gene which controls production of the protein, Shank3.The animals exhibited social problems, and …

Cholesterol drugs could cut clots

Cholesterol drugs could cut clots

Drugs which can regulate levels of cholesterol in the blood may also reduce the risk of dangerous clots, say scientists.Blood clots can result in stroke or heart attack. Researchers, writing in the journal Blood, reduced the size and stability of blood clots in mice and …

‘Apple shape’ heart risk doubts

‘Apple shape’ heart risk doubts

Doubts have been raised over the idea that being overweight and “apple shaped” increases heart attack risk.A study in the Lancet found the risk of heart attack was not increased by fat being concentrated around the waist. It contradicts previous work that found overweight people …

Heart drugs ‘may cut dementia risk’

Heart drugs ‘may cut dementia risk’

  Treating stroke survivors for a heartbeat problem called atrial fibrillation (AF) might prevent many patients from going on to develop dementia, UK experts believe.Research into nearly 50,000 patients’ records found that AF after a stroke more than doubles the risk of dementia. Doctors say …

Laughing ‘helps healing process’

Laughing ‘helps healing process’

A good old belly laugh can help heal leg ulcers, experts say.The Leeds University team said good nursing and the occasional laugh was a better way to get the body healing than using the latest technology. Hospitals and health clinics are increasingly using low-dose ultrasound …

Mothers’ diet link to diabetes

Mothers’ diet link to diabetes

Scientists say they have found a mechanism which may explain why a poor diet during pregnancy can increase the risk of offspring developing diabetes in later life.They say rat studies indicate an imbalanced diet in the mother can lead to the “silencing” of a gene …

Toenails can reveal lung cancer risk

Toenails can reveal lung cancer risk

Scientists say they have found a new way to predict lung cancer – by looking at a person’s toenail clippings.Experts at the University of San Diego in California have found that measuring nicotine levels in clippings can give a fairly accurate idea of future risk. …

Passive smoking ‘raises breast cancer risk’

Passive smoking ‘raises breast cancer risk’

Exposure to second-hand tobacco smoke as a child or adult appears to increase a woman’s risk of breast cancer, experts say. Their study of nearly 80,000 women found breast cancer risk was a third higher among those who had clocked up decades of passive smoking.The …

Cooling ‘cuts baby brain damage’

Cooling ‘cuts baby brain damage’

Babies who are starved of oxygen at birth have a much lower risk of brain damage if they are given mild hypothermia, major research suggests.More than 300 babies were involved in a trial carried out at 33 hospitals in the UK and in five other …

Soft drinks raises the blood pressure risk

Soft drinks raises the blood pressure risk

Drinking too many sugary beverages appears to raise the risk of high blood pressure, experts are warning. Findings suggest blood pressure goes up incrementally for every extra can of sugary drink consumed per day. Drinking more than 355ml a day of sugar-sweetened fruit juice or …

Exercise cuts bowel cancer risk

Exercise cuts bowel cancer risk

People who lead an active lifestyle are up to three times less likely to develop polyps which can develop into bowel cancer, according to a study.The report pulls together 20 previous studies looking at the link between exercise and the development of large polyps.Bowel cancer …

Rise in PSA protein ‘not prostate cancer sign’

Rise in PSA protein ‘not prostate cancer sign’

Further concerns have been raised over the reliability of protein testing as an indicator of prostate cancer.A US study of 5,000 men in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute found even a rapid “doubling time” in prostate specific antigen (PSA) levels was not necessarily …

Education reduces blood pressure

Education reduces blood pressure

Despite exam stress, a long stint in education is good for people’s blood pressure, according to researchers in the US.High blood pressure, or hypertension, is linked to heart attacks, strokes and kidney failure. The study, published in the journal BMC Public Health, shows the link …

Cut red meat to lower cancer risk

Cut red meat to lower cancer risk

People should cut back on red and processed meat to reduce their risk of getting cancer, the government says.New advice recommends eating no more than 70g a day – equivalent to three rashers of bacon or two sausages. Experts say thousands of bowel cancer deaths …