Headlines 

Flesh-eating ulcer spreading rapidly in Australia

Buruli ulcer cases surging and now at epidemic proportions in parts of Victoria, researchers say A severe tissue-destroying ulcer once rare in Australia is rapidly spreading and is now at epidemic proportions in regions of Victoria, prompting infectious diseases experts to call for urgent research into how it is contracted and spread. In an article published in the Medical Journal of Australia (MJA) on Monday, authors led by associate professor Daniel OBrien from Barwon Health said incidents of Buruli ulcer were on the rise but researchers were baffled as to…

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Nerve implant ‘restores consciousness’ to man in persistant vegetative state

Stimulation of the vagus nerve allows patient who has been in a vegetative state for 15 years to track objects with his eyes and respond to simple requests A 35-year-old man who had been in a persistant vegetative state (PVS) for 15 years has shown signs of consciousness after receiving a pioneering therapy involving nerve stimulation. The treatment challenges a widely-accepted view that there is no prospect of a patient recovering consciousness if they have been in PVS for longer than 12 months. Since sustaining severe brain injuries in a…

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Rule that patients must finish antibiotics course is wrong, study says

Experts suggest patients should stop taking the drugs when they feel better rather than completing their prescription Telling patients to stop taking antibiotics when they feel better may be preferable to instructing them to finish the course, according to a group of experts who argue that the rule long embedded in the minds of doctors and the public is wrong and should be overturned. Patients have traditionally been told that they must complete courses of antibiotics, the theory being that taking too few tablets will allow the bacteria causing their…

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Meningitis vaccine may also cut risk of ‘untreatable’ gonorrhoea, study says

Bacteria causing two different illnesses belong to the same family and share much of the same genetic code providing unexpected cross protection Hopes to fight untreatable strains of gonorrhoea have risen after it emerged that a new vaccine against meningitis unexpectedly reduced the risk of people getting the sexually transmitted infection. Some strains of gonorrhoea are resistant to all available drugs, making vaccine development an The Lancet, a vaccine has offered protection against the sexually transmitted disease for the first time. Gonorrhoea spreads through unprotected vaginal, oral or anal sex…

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Odds and Ends 

Mendel.ai nabs $2 million to match cancer patients with the latest clinical trials

Dr. Karim Galil was tired. He was tired of losing patients to cancer. He was tired of messy medical records. And he was tired of trying to stay on top of the avalanche of clinical trials touting one solution or another. Losing both patience and too many patients, Galil decided to create an organized and artificially intelligent system to match those under his care with thebest diagnostic and treatment methods available. He called his new system Mendel.ai after Gregor Mendel, the father of modern genetics science, and has just raised…

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Headlines 

Drinking coffee may help prevent liver cancer, study suggests

People who drink more coffee even decaffeinated are less likely to develop liver cancer, an analysis of data from 26 studies has found Increasing coffee consumption may help to stave off liver cancer, a new study has suggested. Researchers have found that people who drink more coffee are less likely to develop hepatocellular cancer (HCC), the most common form of primary liver cancer and the effect was even found in decaffeinated coffee. Experts from the University of Southampton and the University of Edinburgh examined data from 26 studies involving more…

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Gluten-free diet carries increased obesity risk, warn experts

Food adapted for those with coeliac disease often has more fat and less protein, and no benefits to non-sufferers, finds research Substituting everyday staples with gluten-free foods could increase the risk of obesity, experts have warned, after finding that such products often contain higher levels of fats than the food they aim to replace. A gluten-free diet is essential to those with coeliac disease an auto-immune condition that is thought to affect 1% of Europeans while the regime is also proving coeliacs, it is not intrinsically healthy or unhealthy, he…

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Health report links antibiotics to risk of miscarriage

Canadian study finds taking the drugs raises chances of having a miscarriage by between 60% and 100% Many common antibiotics may double the risk of miscarriage in early pregnancy, research has shown. A Canadian study has found that taking the drugs raised the chances of having a miscarriage by between 60% and 100%. The link was seen with several classes of antibiotic including macrolides, quinolones, tetracyclines, sulphonamides and metronidazole. However, nitrofurantoin, often used to treat urinary tract infections in pregnant women, had no effect on miscarriage risk. Nor did the…

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