Measles has been in the news in the USA recently and with cases in Christchurch, a scare in Sumner in March 2015 and outbreaks occurring regularly in New Zealand, it is time to review the immunisation status of your children.
Measles is not a minor childhood illness - it is very infectious so spreads quickly and can kill - 1 in 1000 children will be harmed permanently by measles and half of those will die.
The good news is that with immunisation it is possible to prevent both infection initially and the spread of the disease.
In the search for the perfect figure without having to starve, we are often tempted to turn to one or more of the many slimming supplements on the market at the moment. We are often asked about Garcinia cambogia (GC) so we have picked apart the existing evidence for this supplement. If you are thinking of taking any product containing GC or HydroxyCitricAcid (HCA), read on..
A new study has shown that glucosamine and chondroitin can be as effective as the prescription only painkiller Celecoxib in moderate to severe knee arthritis, so is there something in this old favourite supplement?
A new study published in the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine casts doubts over the safety of some uses of e-Cigarettes, including those that do not contain nicotine.
Milk is heavily promoted by the Dairy industry as a source of Calcium and being good for bones but a new paper published in the British Medical Journal has found that higher intake of milk in women is not associated with a reduced fracture risk and may also be linked to increased risk of early death. As with all medical studies though, caution is needed in making changes on the basis of this new information.
A study published in JAMA pediatrics on 29/09/2014 has found further evidence for an association between the use of antibiotics in infancy and early childhood obesity.
The study, conducted in North America showed that children who received broad-spectrum antibiotics (these kill a very wide range of bacteria) were 1.11 times more likely to be obese than those who had not been exposed to antibiotics.
A recent article in the Daily Mail Newspaper (26/09/2014) suggested that 'Eating a Curry a Day Helps Beat Dementia' which was too good a claim not to be investigated further.
Turmeric is an interesting herb. A member of the Ginger family, it is widely used in Indian cooking and Ayurvedic medicine and is used in many supplements. It contains a number of compounds that are known to be bio-active and are currently under intense investigation in the hope that they will be found to be useful for health.
A new study from Auckland has suggested a possible link between taking paracetamol in pregnancy and the later development of ADHD.
This is consistent with findings in an earlier study in Denmark and has triggered a review of the status of Paracetamol in pregnancy by Medsafe, the government agency that licences medication for use in New Zealand.
The study was published in the PLOS One journal and is available free for public perusal.
Though mildly worrying, neither the study published this week, nor the previous study have sufficient power to determine whether this is a real effect or simply co-incidence.
A patient recently asked if Cannabis oil might be used to cure a small skin cancer.
Never having been asked this before, a thorough review of the available literature was carried out, but sadly there have been absolutely no published clinical trials to date so it is impossible to recommend this treatment.