you want to feel healthier, less stressed,
less tired and more in control of your weight and even
your appearance there is something you can do about it! Furthermore
it doesn't come from your Pharmacist or on prescription from your
Well it is regular physical exercise that
can help you to achieve all of this! The more you have good physical
exercise the healthier you will be. Exercise can come from every thing
you do, like working around the garden, or around the house. Walking
up stairs, playing with the children or even planned exercise workouts
and various sports. Good exercise will help your body to function
properly and help it to work the way it was intended.
Research shows that physical activity is one of the most effective
age reducing factors known to man. So if you would like to live longer,
simply by controlling your lifestyle and your approach to life you
can enjoy a markedly improved quality
We often think of people as in shape or out of shape. Fit or not fit.
However the question "are you fit?" cannot really be answered
with a simple "yes" or "no." Every one of us has
some level of fitness. On the other hand many people could feel healthier
if they increased their level of fitness even by just a modest amount.
Doing so also helps protect us in many cases from long-term diseases.
It is not necessary for exercise to be hard or rigorous for us to
improve our fitness and quality of health. Reports tell us that even
moderate activity is enough. Exercise performed at a low and moderate
intensity will help us to stay fit and healthy. That being so it appears
we can forget that old line, "no pain-no gain." Research
has shown at the Harvard and Stanford Universities that mental, social,
physical and intellectual activity can keep people vital and alert
as they age. Sound too easy? We suggest you put on those walking shoes
and head out the door as often as you can. At least once a day!
Let that be your goal!
When you first commence exercising remember to do
it regularly and build up slowly. And if you do it
with regularity, you will find that is more significant than exercising
hard and then doing nothing for a few days. Remember, what ever we
do above what we are currently doing is better than nothing! There
are many ways we can become active and improve our health. For example
we can increase our physical activity even more, by taking up dancing
or some other physical activity to help that cardiovascular system
of ours. How often during the day do you take a deep breath? Think
about it! When you do you may then come to realise that you do need
that exercise. Consider playing a sport, joining a health club or
gym or even join an aerobics class.
For those mature age persons you will find regular walks are an extremely
good way to help you with your level of fitness. Lawn bowls as a sport
is enjoyed by all ages. Dancing is excellent for the mature age person
because apart from the physical exercise it is good for socialising
and also good for the memory.
Research has also shown that even older people who may have some serious
health problems can benefit from an exrecise program even to the extent
of reducing the mortality rate.This may be because exercise has been
shown to improve cardiovascular and musculoskeletal health, as well
as general well being and quality of life.
This is good news for older people with health problems because it
shows anyone can benefit from exercise and that it's never too late
to begin exercising.
Doctors-4U suggests if you are contemplating
an exercise routine - and especially if you have any
serious medical conditions you should first
get a clearance from your Doctor. He or She may be
able to recommend a supervised course or program in your area.
This article is intended to help people
of all ages and all levels of fitness. If you are not
exercising as you should we hope this article has provided enough
information and suggestions to motivate you to become more active
and healthier! Remember, plan the changes that will lead to a more
healthier and active lifestyle for you, and then do something about
It is your choice!
Good luck, good health and good enjoyable exercising!
Please remember before commencing any
exercise program consult your Doctor and be guided by her/his advice!
back to top
dangers of boiling water in a microwave oven
feel people who use microwave ovens should be made aware of what
can happen if one is not careful. These
ovens can be dangerous and we all need to be conscious
of this when using one. When
used properly they can be very handy accessory in the home. However,
because these ovens can be dangerous we felt it appropriate to
place this article here for everyone to see. By doing so hopefully
it may prevent any serious accidents
in the future.This article was e - mailed to us
from a concerned person in America and we
thank that person sincerely for the article. It
reads as follows:-
"My 26-year old son decided to have a cup of coffee. He took
a cup of water and put it in the microwave to heat it up (something
that he had done numerous times before).
I am not sure how long he set the timer for, but he told me he
wanted to bring the water to a boil. When the timer shut the oven
off, he removed the cup from the oven. As he looked into the cup,
he noted that the water was not boiling, but instantly the water
in the cup "blew up" into his face. The cup remained
intact until he threw it out of his hand. However all the water
had blown out of the cup and into his face due to the build up
of energy. His whole face is blistered and he has 1st and 2nd
degree burns to his face which may leave scarring. He
also may have lost partial sight in his left eye.
While at the hospital, the doctor who was attending to him stated
that this is a fairly common occurrence,
and water (alone) should never be
heated in a microwave oven. If water is heated
in this manner, something should be placed in the cup to diffuse
the energy such as a wooden stir stick, tea bag, etc. It is however
a much safer choice to boil the water
in a jug or kettle."
Microwave suppliers response:
Microwaved water and other liquids do not always bubble when they
reach boiling point. They can actually get superheated and not
bubble at all. The superheated liquid will bubble up out of the
cup when it is moved or when something like a spoon or tea bag
is put into it. To prevent this from happening and causing injury,
do not heat any liquid for more than two minutes per cup.
After heating, let the cup stand in the microwave for thirty seconds
before moving it or adding anything into it. I hope this helps.
Should you need any further assistance, please contact us.
This maybe so however we urge everyone to place something in the
cup first and be sure never to heat the contents of a cup for more
than 2 minutes!
is a response from a Scientist:
for the microwave warning. I have seen this happen before. It is caused
by a phenomenon known as super heating. It can occur anytime water
is heated and will particularly occur if the vessel that the water
is heated in is new, or when heating a small amount of water (less
than half a cup), What happens is that the water heats faster than
the vapor bubbles can form. If the cup is very new then it is unlikely
to have small surface scratches inside it that provide a place for
the bubbles to form. As the bubbles cannot form and release some of
the heat that has built up, the liquid does not boil, and the liquid
continues to heat up well past its boiling point. What then usually
happens is that the liquid is bumped or jarred, which is just enough
of a shock to cause the bubbles to rapidly form and expel the hot
liquid. The rapid formation of bubbles is also why a carbonated beverage
over flows when opened or after having been shaken"
back to top
following article is brought to you with our compliments and the
compliments of the National Heart Foundation. Our sincere thanks
to the heart foundation for this information on a very important
remember, the National Heart Foundation is grateful for donations
and you can be sure they go to a worthy cause. You can contact the
National Heart Foundation by telephone or by e-mail from their Web
You can also make a donation on line if you wish!
and Hypertension (High Blood Pressure)
What is 'salt'?
The chemical name for salt is sodium chloride'. Salt provides
our bodies with the minerals 'sodium' and 'chloride', which are both
needed for us to function normally.
Which foods contain salt?
Salt is found in almost every food we eat, but the amount present
in different foods varies a great deal. Most of the salt we eat (about
75%) comes from processed foods. High salt processed foods include
soy sauce, processed meats, canned soups, canned anchovies, and stock
cubes. About 15% of the salt we eat comes from the salt we add at
the table or in cooking.
Most fresh foods (vegetables, fruit, nuts and unprocessed meats) are
naturally low in salt and contribute little to the salt we eat.
How much salt do I need?
We do need to eat some salt. The amount of salt in our food is measured
in millimoles (mmol) or milligrams (mg) of sodium. The current recommendation
is that we eat no more than 100mmol (or 2300mg) of sodium per day.
You can easily get your requirements from the natural salt in fresh
foods, so there is no need to add salt to a healthy eating plan.
What's wrong with eating too much salt?
Most of us eat more salt than we need. Eating too much salt can lead
to high blood pressure (also called hypertension). High blood pressure
increases your risk of heart disease and stroke. If you already have
high blood pressure, eating too much salt may make it worse.
High blood pressure affects almost a third of people who are over
50 years of age. Almost one half of Australians have high blood pressure
before they reach the age of 70.
Enjoying a healthy eating pattern that is low in salt is one way to
help control your blood pressure, or avoid high blood pressure altogether.
The effect salt has on blood pressure varies from person to person.
Elderly persons are usually more sensitive to changes in salt intake.
How can I eat less salt?
high salt foods
processed foods such as processed meats, commercial sauces, soups,
packet seasoning and stock cubes (other than those that are labelled'no
added salt ' low salt', or salt reduced).
potato chips/crisps, high salt take away foods and salted nuts.
plenty of fresh vegetables and fruit.
foods normally processed without salt and foods labelled'no added
salt', 'low salt' or 'salt reduced'.
low salt breads and cereals.
packaged foods with a sodium content of no more than 120 milligrams
per 100 grams (note: some 'salt reduced' foods don't meet these recommendations).
Low salt and low sodium foods are defined as foods with a sodium content
of no more than 120mg/100g (or 120mg/100ml for liquid foods). Look
at the Nutrition Information panel on the package and
read the sodium content in the per 100g or per 100ml
per can: 1 Serving Size: 220g
the sodium content is given in grams instead of milligrams per
100g, convert to milligrams by multiplying by 1000 (e.g. 1.2g/100g
Salt reduced foods
It is ideal for people with hypertension to choose 'no added salt'
and 'low salt' foods. If these are not available the 'reduced
salt' version of the food, although not ideal, is still a better
choice than the regular product.
However, foods that are labelled 'salt reduced' are not necessarily
low salt foods. It is a good idea to read the nutrition information
panel to check the actual amount of salt in the 'reduced salt'
For a food to be called 'salt reduced', its sodium content must
be reduced from that of the standard product by at least 90mg/100g
and must not exceed a total of 600mg/100g. In other words, it
is possible for a salt reduced food to contain as much as five
times more salt than the maximum allowed for a low salt food (120mg/100g).
Avoid adding salt at the table
flavour food use freshly ground pepper, fresh or dried herbs, vinegar
or balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, fresh mustard (made from powdered
mustard), and fresh garlic or garlic powder.
commercial no-added-salt sauces.
making your own sauces, pickles and chutneys without adding salt.
salt, rock salt, sea salt, garlic salt and celery salt are no different
to ordinary salt and should be avoided.
chloride is another product often used as a salt alternative. You
should check with your doctor before using it.
using salt in cooking
includes cooking salt, onion salt, celery salt, garlic salt, MSG,
beef and chicken stock cubes, stock powder, soup cubes, gravy powder
and soy sauce. Instead, use:
(tart) flavours such as vinegars, and fruit juices such as lemon,
lime, plum, tamarind and pineapple juice;
spices such as cumin, cardamon, cinnamon, ginger, turmeric, chilli,
clove, coriander, pepper and mustard;
flavours such as fresh herbs, garlic, onion, chives, spring onion,
horseradish, table wine, sherry;
no added salt', 'low salt', or 'reduced salt' varieties of stock powders
and stock cubes (available in most supermarkets).
How long does it take to get used to a low salt eating pattern?
It will take time to adjust to a low salt eating pattern, but be patient!
Although food may at first taste bland, after a month or so it will
taste quite acceptable. If you're having trouble, try reducing your
salt intake gradually, in a stepwise fashion, until your taste buds
get used to the other flavours in foods.
Some people may no longer need medication for their blood pressure,
or may require less medication, if they eat less salt, if they make
changes to their eating habits like eating more vegetables and fruit,
and if they become more physically active.
Is there ever a problem with reducing salt intake?
People with kidney disease, or those taking certain medications (such
as lithium or diuretics) should check with their doctor before changing
the amount of salt they eat. Women who are pregnant should also talk
to their doctor before making any changes.
Do we ever need to take extra salt?
After heavy sweating, for example in hot weather or when exercising,
you may need to drink more water but you won't need more salt. Your
body automatically adjusts by making sweat less salty and passing
less salt into the urine. It is very unlikely you will ever need extra
salt unless advised by your doctor.
What else can I do to help lower blood pressure?
To help lower blood pressure, apart from limiting salt intake, it
is important to:
and maintain a healthy weight - Reducing excess weight can lower blood
pressure in most people. Being overweight, particularly excess weight
carried in the abdominal area, are risk factors for coronary heart
disease and diabetes. Being physically active, limiting alcohol intake
and healthy eating (see below) can assist with weight loss.
physically active - The Heart Foundation recommends that people include
30 minutes or more of moderate intensity physical activity (such as
brisk walking) on most, if not all days of the week, for health benefits.
The amount of activity can be accumulated in shorter bouts, such as
three 10-minute walks.
healthy eating to help lower blood cholesterol levels by choosing
mainly plant-based foods such as bread, cereals, rice, pasta, vegetables,
fruits and legumes (dried peas, beans and lentils), and moderate amounts
of lean meats, poultry, eggs, fish, reduced-fat dairy products and
polyunsaturated and monounsaturated margarine and oils.
For more information contact the Heart Foundation's telephone information
service Heartline on 1300 36 27 87 (cost of local call).
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is a disease?
disease is a condition that impairs the proper function of the body
or of one of its parts. Every living thing, both plants and animals,
can succumb to disease. People, for example, are often infected by
tiny bacteria, but bacteria, in turn, can be infected by even more
Hundreds of different diseases exist. Each has its own particular
set of symptoms and signs, clues that enable your Doctor to diagnose
A symptom is something a patient can detect, such as fever, bleeding,
or pain. A sign is something a doctor can detect, such as a swollen
blood vessel or an enlarged internal body organ.
Every disease has a cause, although the causes of some remain to be
discovered. Every disease also displays a cycle of onset, or beginning,
course, or time span of affliction, and end.
An epidemic disease is one that strikes many persons in a community.
When it strikes the same region year after year it is an endemic disease.
An acute disease has a quick onset and runs a short course. An acute
heart attack, for example, often hits without warning and can be quickly
fatal. A chronic disease has a slow onset and runs a sometimes years-long
course. The gradual onset and long course of rheumatic fever makes
it a chronic ailment.
Germs Invade the Body
Humans live in a world where many other living things compete for
food and places to breed. The pathogenic organisms, or pathogens,
often broadly called germs, that cause many diseases are able to invade
the human body and use its cells and fluids for their own needs.
Ordinarily, the body's defense system can ward off these invaders.
Pathogenic organisms can enter the body in various ways. Some, such
as those that cause the common cold, pneumonia, and tuberculosis are
breathed in. Others, such as those that cause venereal diseases enter
through sexual contact of human bodies. Still others, such as those
that cause bacillary dysentery, cholera, and typhoid fever get in
the body through contaminated food, water, or utensils.
Insects can spread disease by acting as vectors, or carriers. Flies
can carry germs from human waste or other tainted materials to food
and beverages. Germs may also enter the body through the bite of a
mosquito, louse, or other insect vector.
Kinds of Disease
or communicable, diseases are those that can be passed between persons
such as by means of airborne droplets from a cough or sneeze. Tiny
organisms such as bacteria and fungi can produce infectious diseases.
So can viruses. So can tiny worms. Whatever the causative agent might
be, it survives in the person it infects and is passed on to another.
Or, its eggs are passed on. Sometimes, a disease-producing organism
gets into a person who shows no symptoms of the disease. The asymptomatic
carrier can then pass the disease on to someone else without even
knowing he has it.
Noninfectious, or noncommunicable, diseases are caused by malfunctions
of the body. These include organ or tissue degeneration, erratic cell
growth, and faulty blood formation and flow. Also included are disturbances
of the stomach and intestine, the endocrine system, and the urinary
and reproductive systems. Some diseases can be caused by diet deficiencies,
lapses in the body's defense system, or a poorly operating nervous
Disability and illnesses can also be provoked by psychological and
social factors. These ailments include drug addiction, obesity, malnutrition,
and pollution-caused health problems.
is a Psychosomatic Disorder?
thought to be caused, at least in part, by emotional factors are known
as psychosomatic disorders. The term comes from the Greek psyche, meaning
"spirit" or "soul," and soma, meaning "body"
and refers to the effect of the mind on the body's health. Other terms
used to describe psychosomatic disorders are psychophysiologic disorders,
psychogenic diseases, and organ neuroses.
In psychosomatic disorders, repeated emotional stress can cause dysfunction
or structural damage in the body's tissues, organs, and organ systems
by chronically stimulating the involuntary nervous system and the glands
of internal secretion. This process is in contrast to disorders caused
by bacterial or viral infections. A headache, for example, can stem
from a common cold or from muscle tension caused by stress. The headache
of a cold disappears when the infection is gone, but headaches from
continued emotional stress may be self-perpetuating. Tightened muscles
in the neck, shoulders, and back increase the person's stress, which
in turn increases tension in the muscles, which increases stress--setting
up a vicious cycle. Chronic tension headaches often progress to chronic
back pain, which can become disabling.
The theory of psychosomatic disorders was proposed in the 1950s and
1960s by Franz Alexander and his colleagues at the Chicago Institute
for Psychoanalysis. They suggested that specific personality traits
and specific conflict situations created particular psychosomatic disorders.
For example, asthma was thought to result from a conflict between the
need for dependency (wheezing was a symbolic cry for mother) and the
fear of dependency. If the condition persisted over several years, it
could result in damage to the respiratory system. Patients with peptic
ulcers were thought to equate the need for love with the need for food,
much like an infant. As a result, the stomach continuously secreted
digestive enzymes that eventually damaged the stomach lining.
Most scientists believe Alexander's theory is too rigid, but as yet
there is little agreement on the exact causes of psychosomatic disorders.
Although many people often develop these disorders during periods of
high stress in their lives, no one knows why some people develop one
ailment and some another. Some investigators have tried to determine
whether patients with the same disorder share a common personality trait.
One theory holds that a particular emotional trauma, especially one
occurring in childhood, causes illness in later life.
On the other hand, researchers have been able to identify two types
of emotional stress that contribute to the development of psychosomatic
disorders. Stress that originates in childhood can remain as an unconscious,
unresolved conflict that adversely affects the body. For example, children
whose parents punish them whenever they show anger may grow up learning
to repress their angry feelings. As a result, they may develop chronic
stomach pain, back pain, or headaches. The second type of emotional
stress arises from such life situations as the death of a loved one,
divorce, job loss, or illness. Although this type of stress may be of
shorter duration, it can be more severe and cause greater physical damage.
The body's reaction to stress can result in a variety of ailments: high
blood pressure (hypertension), peptic ulcers, bronchial asthma, migraine
headaches, ulcerative colitis, insomnia, skin diseases, and allergies.
As in the case of all psychosomatic disorders, patients are usually
unaware of the emotional conflicts underlying their conditions. This
fact can make it difficult for a Doctor to diagnose the true cause of
a psychosomatic disorder. A hypertensive patient, for example, may not
know that he is repressing his anger and may believe instead that he
is cooperative and mild-mannered.
Although the causes of psychosomatic disorders begin in the mind, the
physical symptoms are real and may even be life threatening. These disorders
are treated first through traditional medical therapy. Drugs can be
used to lower blood pressure, decrease the production of digestive enzymes,
and relax respiratory passages.
Psychotherapeutic approaches then are used to help patients express
emotions more constructively and to resolve long-term emotional conflicts.
Likewise, private or group counseling can enable people to cope with
stressful situations. Techniques such as self-hypnosis, conscious relaxation,
and biofeedback have helped many people retrain their physical responses
vertebral fractures - with cement!
of ACA Channel 9
19 August 2003
Reporter: Jane Hansen
fractures are common among severe osteoporosis sufferers but up until
recently there have been few alternatives to manage the pain. Now, as
ACA reports, a procedure known as vertebroplasty - which involves an
injection of concrete into the fracture - is giving patients new hope
of an improved quality of life.
to believe but just 24 hours ago, Marie Englund could barely move after
a fall fractured her spine and she says the pain was agonising.
couldn't even talk, it crossed under my chest, it was agony," she
says. "It's the most terrible pain and I can't describe it."
hours, Marie's fracture was pinpointed and treated with an injection
of cement by specialist Dr William Clark, which he says stops the movement
in the broken bone and abolishes the pain almost immediately.
Professor Terry Diamond says the treatment is a remarkable improvement
on traditional therapies, which have largely been ineffective for many
of the spine is very difficult to do so treatment has centred on heat
and cold packs and analgesia with rehabilitation," he says. "Six
to six months is the natural history for how long spinal fractures take
McGuiness, who fractured her spine just a few days ago, undergoing vertebroplasty
seems a little daunting but she fears the alternative.
no alternative really," she says. "Only sitting in a chair
to Dr Clark, Margaret's spine actually looks as though there is a fracture
right through the middle of the vertebral body and these types of injury
tends to be very painful. That's why this procedure - which involves
the same cement orthopaedic surgeons have been using for many years
to glue hip joints - is so appealing.
mix up the cement by adding some liquid to some powder and we have a
working time of about three to four minutes to inject the cement,"
explains Dr Clark.
later, the local anaesthetic has worn off and Margaret is resting more
is by no means a cure for osteoporosis but it's an effective treatment
that returns the quality of life to the elderly and in some cases saves
lives. Without the procedure, 90-year-old World War II veteran Gordon
McIlvene may not have survived after fracturing his back two years ago.
Diamond says Gordon's severe back pain began when he got off the bus
he'd caught into town. The pain ended up getting much worse.
was eventually wheelchair-bound and started to get secondary infection
in his lungs because of the pain," says Professor Diamond. "He's
the classic patient who is at risk of pneumonia, ending up in hospital,
getting clots in the legs and dying from a pulmonary event - in this
group, the therapy is amazing."
he's back to his cheeky self, ready and looking forward to marching
at next year's ANZAC Day parade.
[surgeons] do things behind your back, you know?" he jokes. "I
still don't know what they actually did but I've been alright ever since!"
A Special thank you to ACA Channel 9 for this article..
www.ninemsn.com/aca 19th August 2003..
Percutaneous vertebroplasty: what is it?
of ACA Channel 9
19 August 2003
in the following fact sheet has been provided by Associate Professor
of Medicine, Terry Diamond.
a vertebral fracture?
column comprises a number of vertebral bodies (cervical, thoracic and
lumbar). With severe osteoporosis, a vertebral body can fracture either
spontaneously following a cough, sneeze or with minimal trauma such
as lifting a small shopping bag.
is associated with severe, excruciating back pain, requiring narcotic
analgesia and hospitalisation. Patients are usually elderly and may
develop significant complications following fracture, such as pneumonia,
blood clots and even death (increased by as much as eight-fold).
recently, analgesia, bracing, heat packs and physiotherapy offered some
or cementoplasty is a technique whereby liquid cement is injected through
a fine needle into a vertebrae body under careful X-ray screening.
is injected in liquid form and rapidly undergoes a thermal reaction
and solidifies. When the liquid substance is injected, it first dissipates
throughout the fine fractured trabecular network of the vertebral body
and then solidifies, acting as a solid support for the pain-sensitive
vertebral endplates and the spinal column above. This process results
in dramatic pain relief.
benefit from this treatment?
was first developed in 1987 for the treatment of spinal tumours. It
is now recognised as a very effective modality for treating acute painful
vertebral fractures in elderly osteoporotic patients. This procedure
is predominantly of benefit in individuals who have MRI evidence of
acute vertebral fractures.
results in prompt pain relief and allows for the rapid rehabilitation
of patients, thereby preventing hospital admission and fracture-related
is performed on a day-only outpatient service. The overall reduction
in costs and bed days associated with acute vertebral fractures treated
by successful vertebroplasty may have significant savings on the ailing
· Not all patients are suitable for vertebroplasty. This technique
is indicated for treating patients with acute severe osteoporotic vertebral
fractures. It is not a technique for treating chronic vertebral deformities.
· Vertebroplasty is contraindicated in individuals who are on
blood thinners (anti-coagulants) and those in whom the fracture deformity
impinges on the spinal cord.
· It is not without risk. Complications may be related to cement
allergy, bleeding from the procedure and leakage of cement into surrounding
structures and blood vessels.
· Vertebroplasty should currently be reserved for the elderly
patient (60+), since the long-term risks of increased spinal stiffness
associated with recurrent fractures remains unknown.
any other treatment required after vertebroplasty?
important to note that vertebroplasty only treats the symptoms. Most
patients have severe underlying osteoporosis placing them at high risk
of recurrent fractures. Treatment with appropriate anti-osteoporotic
drug therapies is indicated. Moreover, an optimal rehabilitation program
with hydrotherapy is indicated after the procedure, so as to allow the
individual to return to his/her pre-fracture lifestyle.
are very rare but can be significant. Vertebroplasty is very much operator-dependent.
It is imperative that vertebroplasty only be undertaken in tertiary
care referral centres with highly trained and skilled radiologists with
optimal radiological imaging equipment.
research (Diamond et al, American Journal of Medicine 2003) indicates
when compared to conservative therapy, vertebroplasty results in prompt
pain relief and rapid rehabilitation. In experienced hands, it is considered
a safe and effective procedure for treating acute osteoporotic vertebral
thank you to ACA Channel 9 for this article..
Minister denies plans for ID card scheme
Saturday August 30.
Federal Health Minister Senator Kay Patterson has denied the Commonwealth
is considering an all-in-one health identification card.
There have been claims the Federal Government plans to issue every Australian
with an ID card to track their health record from birth.
In Perth in Western Australia, Senator Kay Patterson said the Federal
Government was conducting trials with volunteers so information can be
coordinated between state and federal health providers.
But she says reports of a health ID card are wrong because they would
compromise privacy issues.
"Health information is very, very important information to individuals,"
"It's important that if people are involved in a trial what's involved
they are all volunteers and the privacy commissioner has been consulted
at every point in these trials."
thank you to ACA Channel 9 for this article..
1 Sep 2003
green light sparks concern
debate is underway in the medical community over a decision to extend
the range of painkillers being sold in supermarkets and corner stores.
Some experts claim the drugs can have dangerous side-effects and say
they should be sold only in pharmacies.
The National Drugs and Poisonings Scheduling Committee (NDPSC) has recommended
that ibuprofen, a drug also known as Nurofen, Act 3 and several other
brands, be rescheduled for sale in supermarkets and corner stores from
January 1 next year.
But across the medical spectrum, experts are concerned the green light
has been given. "In this particular case it's a wrong decision,"
said John Bell of the Pharmaceutical Society. "Ibuprofen drugs
are commonly taken for pain relief. They are actually anti-inflammatory
drugs for muscle and arthritic conditions but also have pain relief
benefits. But it can have serious risks like kidney damage and stomach
The problem is, according to gastro entomologist Dr Danny Stiel, that
supermarket accessibility could lull people into thinking it's harmless.
"Hundreds of people of people in Australia die from ulcers each
year of bleeding and other complications and that can only increase
if we allow them to be more widely available," he said. But the
dangers increase if they're already taking - as millions of Australians
do - other prescription anti-inflammatory medication.
"Like Voltaren, like Celebrex, Vioxx, Feldene - all of these have
the potential to interact or exacerbate the side-effects of these products,"
said Mr Bell.
Pharmacists say the more they know about ibuprofen, the more people
take it and the more concerns they have. It's already known to trigger
asthma attacks and now there's a new finding raising alarm for women
trying to get pregnant.
"The new study shows that ibuprofen, like aspirin, which used to
be taken to try and avoid miscarriage actually, doubles the risk of
miscarriage," said Professor Robert Jansen from Sydney IVF.
Specialists say the public should be warned:
"There should at least be prominent marking to that effect if they're
not sold in the circumstance where a pharmacist can explain the use
of the drugs," said Professor Jansen. According to John Bell, the
recent data has confirmed the belief of many that there is no place
on the supermarket shelf for ibuprofen - in their view it is not a grocery-shelf
Source: National Nine News
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