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Saturday, 22 January 2011

Are Your Kids Abusing Drugs from Your Medicine Cabinet?

A captivated audience of students, parents, and other local citizens assembled at Mount Miguel High School’s gymnasium this week for a forum on the dangers of prescription drug abuse. The presentation, led by San Diego Sheriff's Sgt. David Ross, profiled the rising trend of prescription drug abuse among local youth, and left a sobering impact on attendees.According to the U.S. Office of National Drug Control Policy, prescription drugs are the second most abused illegal drug (behind marijuana) by children ages 12-17 and the most commonly used among children ages 12-13. Drugs like Vicodin, Xanax, Valium and OxyContin are being substituted for “street drugs” because children assume they are safer, since they were prescribed by a doctor. What's more, they're often easily available in the family medicine cabinet.Ross has been working to increase awareness of OxyContin abuse in California, and he also helped establish the OXY Task Force in San Diego. “It runs the gamut of these drugs out there,” Ross said, as he scanned through mug shots of young addicts and dealers. “Oxy users become addicted almost immediately, and stay addicted for life.”When used properly, OxyContin, and similar opiate pills like morphine and codeine, can provide up to 12 hours of pain relief. Oxy abusers smoke melted pills or snort crushed pills, causing the time-released drug to enter the body instantaneously. Abusers say it "feels just like heroin, but you are functional and don’t pass out,” Ross said.Most addicts accidentally get hooked after an injury or simply turn to pills as an easy way to escape from problems. The main reason teens are using? A desire to fit in with the “popular kids” in hopes they will be invited to a “pharming party.” “The more you want to be like them, the more you want to use like them,” said a recovered Oxy addict in a video testimonial. “I didn’t even know Oxy was synthetic heroin until six months after I was already using it.”The home medicine cabinet is not the only place that students find prescription drugs. They obtain them from illegal Internet sites, pharmacy employee theft, and “dirty doctors.” Ross said border smuggling is also popular with kids, because they can easily trade electronics or other valuables for prescription drugs and heroin in Mexico. San Diego County has come a long way since shedding its title of “Meth Capital of America.” However, the alarming new prescription drug epidemic has law enforcement officials facing yet another battle, one that starts within the comfort of home. Parental involvement is key to winning the war, Ross said. Ross, a father of two, warned fellow parents in the audience. “Don’t be your kid’s friend. You need to be their parent, not an enabler,” he said. “You need to dig for answers.”From 2005-09, San Diego County experienced a 74 percent increase in deaths from prescription drugs, reaching a death toll of 621 in 2009. According to the Sheriff’s Department, the problem started in the upper-middle class areas north of La Jolla—affluent areas like Del Mar, Carmel Mountain, Rancho Bernardo and especially the Poway area. “Hot spots” for prescription drug activity in San Diego include everything within a 20-mile radius of where Ted Williams Parkway intersects with the I-15 and I-56.“These kids are paying upwards of $80 a pill and buying them like they are going out of style,” Ross said.Locally, sheriffs' deputies have identified Spring Valley as a problem area as well. Ross said he personally retrieved approximately 1,000 pills over a three-week period from 15 different dealers while staked out in the parking lot of Rally’s Hamburgers on Jamacha Road.Those who attended Wednesday's forum also heard from teens and families whose lives have been affected by prescription drugs.One was Poway High School graduate Aaron Rubin. Once, Rubin had it all. The charismatic teen was vibrant, smart and athletic, had a loving family and hundreds of friends. But, at 23 years old, Rubin made a choice that drastically changed his life forever. On Oct. 9, 2005, Aaron overdosed on OxyContin and other prescription drugs while at a friend’s house, causing him to have a heart attack and two strokes. He narrowly escaped death. Aaron is now a quadriplegic, unable to speak, and completely dependent on others. His parents, Sherrie and Mike Rubin, spoke to the Mount Miguel audience to educate families about the addictive nature of the pills in hopes of preventing further tragedies. “You are getting the opportunity to hear a powerful message about the serious consequences of your choices,” said Mike Rubin. “We never thought this could happen to us. It happens to good families and destroys your lives.”After Aaron’s overdose, the Rubins watched two other Poway families suffer as they lost their sons, Clayton Blackburn and James Joseph Wait, to fatal overdoses of OxyContin. Determined to ignite change, Sherrie Rubin launched a multifaceted outreach program in partnership with local law enforcement and the DEA called Rollin with Rubin in 2010. They are also in the process of forming a new nonprofit organization called H.O.P.E. Inc. (Heroin, Opiates, and Prescription pill Education).“Taking pills and partying helped Aaron be accepted by everyone, but when he overdosed those friends were not there to help him,” Sherrie Rubin said. “If you start down this path, it will have a very tragic ending. No party is worth it, no friend is worth it.”She  then shared a passage from a journal that Aaron kept while in a rehab facility, prior to his overdose. “My life was not a life, but a roller coaster of pain, shame, sadness and depression. I am not me, I am losing myself,” Aaron wrote.  Ross explained that most kids who fall into the deadly cycle of using Oxy and similar pills are just like Aaron—good students, with no prior arrests or behavioral problems. “They fly under the radar, so parents and educators don’t know until it’s too late,” he said.Ross shared the early warning signs of prescription drug abuse. Don’t miss the subtle signs, he said. If your child has become withdrawn from family events, has money issues, is always tired, or is always leaving, start asking questions. If you begin to notice a decline in academic or work performance, items missing from the house, or you catch them in lies, start checking their Facebook, MySpace, or texts for inappropriate conversations, Ross advised. Also, search their rooms for paraphernalia including tinfoil, hollowed-out pens, lighters, hose clamps, syringes and spoons. If your child seems to have a weak immune system, extreme weight loss, watery and sunken eyes, poor complexion, drowsiness and tremors, get help as soon as possible. Ross said it usually takes a minimum of six months in rehab, and a year’s worth of follow up treatment, to beat the addiction.
Courtesy:Kerry Yednak
Source: Poway Patch

Honorary Doctorate Awarded to Mr. Gopinathan Nair, CEO of Santhigram Kerala Ayurveda Inc.

Gopinathan Nair, Founding Chairman and Managing Director of Santhigram Group of Companies, the pioneer of Kerala specific Panchakarma treatment centers in the USA , was awarded “Honorary Doctorate” by the Indian Institute of Complementary Medicine (IICM). This prestigious award was given to him, in recognition of the outstanding contribution he made in promoting Ayurveda nationally and internationally. Indian Institute of Complementary Medicine (IICM) is a premier institute recognized by the Government of India. Dr. Gopinathan is already recipient of awards like “Super Achiever Award” from Bharat Nirman in 2008 and “Pride of the Country” award in the year 2000.

SAARC Telemedicine Center Launched in Nepal

A South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) telemedicine centre has been launched in Nepal and will link with institutes in Lucknow and Chandigarh.
The center is part of the pledge made by Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh during the 13th SAARC Summit in Dhaka in 2005. India has invested Rs 4.8 crore in the center at the Patan Hospital in Lalitpur.Indian Ambassador in Nepal Rakesh Sood was present on the occasion when Nepal's caretaker Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal declared the center open. Mr Sood expressed happiness over the establishment of the center, "The Government of India is happy to establish the SAARC telemedicine centre that extends the geographic reach of medical care and provide people in remote and rural areas access to medical specialists," he said. 
Prime Minister Nepal said the center would provide access to quality healthcare for people living in remote mountainous areas in the country. 



Food Safety Could be Improved by Killer Paper

A new food packaging material that has the ability to preserve food by fighting the bacteria that cause spoilage has been developed by scientists.
The 'killer paper' contains a coating of silver nanoparticles that kills E. coli and S. aureus, two causes of bacterial food poisoning, in just three hours.This suggests its potential application as a food packaging material for longer shelf life. 
Aharon Gedanken and colleagues note that silver already finds wide use as a bacteria fighter in certain medicinal ointments, kitchen and bathroom surfaces, and even odor-resistant socks.
Until now, scientists were unable to deposit the particles of silver - each 1/50,000 the width of a human hair - onto paper. The new method involves the use of ultrasound, or high-frequency sound waves, to deposit the particles on paper.
The 'killer paper' could also provide an alternative to common food preservation methods such as radiation, heat treatment, and low temperature storage, the researchers noted.
The finding has been described in ACS' journal Langmuir.



Friday, 21 January 2011

Baby Yoga: is It Safe?

Baby Yoga is slowly gaining popularity in Russia and neighboring countries even as many parents across the globe are shocked over the procedure and are far from certain that it is safe for the children. Lena Fokina, a 50-year old Russian living in Egypt, is widely regarded as the baby yoga guru and while many believe that the baby in her hand was not real, Fokina begs to differ and went on to claim that such a practice is beneficial for the babies.Baby Yoga involves holding the baby by its legs or arms and tossing it up and down and twisting them side by side. While there is a general perception that such a practice will harm the baby, Fokina said that the babies which have undergone it are some of the early readers, swimmers and are generally more physically developed than other children of the same age group. 



Greece to Enforce Smoking Ban

Greece has pledged to enforce smoking ban enacted last year. The latest after decades of failed effort and continues to be widely flouted in Europe's most nicotine-addicted nation.The health ministry said it would hire additional inspectors to bolster a feeble response by municipal officials as a leading anti-tobacco activist on Wednesday rejected arguments by cafes and restaurants that the ban chases away their patrons in the midst of a bitter recession."We need to protect public health even if it hurts the pockets of some people," Panagiotis Bechrakis, a prominent pulmonary expert, told Flash Radio. A day earlier, Health Minister Andreas Loverdos had warned that the crackdown would be enforced "without exception." "Those who smoked in bars, restaurants and cafes in recent months have smoked enough," he told reporters.As a response to the reluctance of many mayors to aggressively pursue the ban -- a trend largely blamed on local elections in November -- Loverdos said hundreds of state inspectors would be brought in to do the job. "The state can be ridiculed no longer," the minister said, noting that in the last two months there had been 343,000 complaints from non-smokers but only 3,000 fines were imposed.Loverdos had earlier proposed to levy 'smoking licenses' on businesses to fill the state's depleted coffers but Prime Minister George Papandreou, a dedicated non-smoker, quashed the proposal, reports said.Restaurant and cafe owners say that business is already down by 30-50 percent because of the recession gripping Greece, and the smoking restriction has brought a further slump of up to 80 percent in turnover. 




Poor Diet During Early Pregnancy Impacts Fetal Brain Development

Poor nutrition early in pregnancy can cause a lifetime of damage to an unborn baby's brain, leading to lower IQ and behavioral problems, new research suggests.Although the study was carried out on animals, researchers at the University of Texas Health Science Center said the same findings are relevant for humans.They said that non-human primates used in the lab who ate less while pregnant impaired their fetus' brain development."This is a critical time window when many of the neurons as well as the supporting cells in the brain are born," Peter Nathanielsz, one of the researchers, said in a statement. The team compared two groups of baboon mothers at Southwest Foundation for Biomedical Research (SFBR)'s primate research center. One group was allowed to eat as much as they wanted during the first half of pregnancy, while the other group was fed 30 percent less. They found decreased formation of cell-to-cell connections, cell division and amounts of growth factors in the fetuses of mothers fed a reduced diet during the first half of pregnancy. "We found dysregulation of hundreds of genes, many of which are known to be key regulators in cell growth and development, indicating that nutrition plays a major role during fetal development by regulating basic cellular machinery," said Laura Cox, one of the SFBR scientists.Previous studies have shown that marked nutrient restriction, such as in famine conditions, adversely affects fetal brain development. 




Link Between Migraine and Blood Vessels in Brain

In a recent work MRI was used to study the brains of migraine sufferers and has shown that a higher proportion of these patients exhibit lesions of the brain micro-vessels. Researchers further evaluated the impact of migraine on cognitive function. The research affirms the existence of a link between migraine and blood vessels in the brain.
Lesions of the brain micro-vessels, visible on cerebral MRI images, can be of various kinds: white-matter hyperintensities and, more rarely, silent infarcts leading to loss of white-matter tissue.
They result from a deterioration of the small cerebral arteries that supply blood to the brain's white matter, the material which ensures, among other things, the passage of information between different parts of the brain.
These lesions are observed in almost all elderly people. However, their severity varies greatly from one individual to the next. Moreover, it has been shown that they are more severe among hypertension sufferers and diabetics.
A large quantity of hyperintensities leads to many cerebral complications: cognitive deterioration, increased risk of Alzheimer's disease, depression, movement disorders and increased risk of stroke.
Moreover, according to several studies, the presence of a large quantity of this type of brain lesion increases the risk of cognitive deterioration (reasoning, memory, etc.) and of Alzheimer's disease. This is why the research team coordinated by Christophe Tzourio, director of the Inserm-University Pierre et Marie Curie Mixed Research Unit 708 "Neuroepidemiology", advanced the hypothesis that migraines could "damage" the brain.



Thursday, 20 January 2011

Homeopathy as the most common alternative medicine, works in the treatment of diabetic patients.

Homeopathic medicine is based on several principles. The cornerstone principle is the law of similars. Like cures like. Homeopathic remedies are substances which enhance our immune system and respect the wisdom of body for self healing, instead of suppressing valuable symptoms which are of great importance to the diagnosis and self healing processes. 
Unfortunately nearly all conventional medicines suppress these symptoms and deepen them and push them to deeper and more vital organs or systems. For example almost all dermatological symptoms are very precious signs of deeper organ problems. Homeopaths believe these symptoms should be considered along with other mental and physical symptoms of patients to come to an individual and constitutional remedy.As far as the dermatological symptoms are present we should not think complete cure has been achieved. So in chronic conditions like diabetes mellitus which is a syndrome and not just a single disorder, first we do a thorough interview with the patient and then change the symptoms to rubrics. In the next step we repertorize these rubrics(symptoms in homeopathy) by internationally applied softwares. One of them is called “Radar”. After repertorizing (selected rubrics lead us to appropriate remedy), proper remedy is chosen, prescribed and taken by patient. In the following paragraphs you may read one of the articles , published in a popular homeopathic web site called””. INTRODUCTION: Type 1 (formerly Insulin Dependent Diabetes Mellitus), usually juvenile onset but may occur at any age. Cause: Insulin deficiency due to selective destruction of secreting pancreatic beta cells. Patients need Insulin and are prone to ketoacidosis and weight loss. It is associated with other auto immune diseases (> 90% carry HLADR 3 and/or DR4). Analysis of the patient: A 13 yr old school girl suffering from this disease for 8 years was referred to me. Her parents were both nurses and very worried about their daughter’s condition. She looked very alert though uncooperative. Spells of nightly hypoglycemia, her disappointment of improvement had led her to disregarding her diabetic diet and testing her FBS regularly. The high HA1c of 10 and FBS of 230 mg/dl revealed the family’s poor control. She used to reproach her brothers before other people and was aggressive towards them, when she got angry. A cramped state especially during sleep was another symptom. After taking the case, Nux vomica was found to be the most similar remedy. So 20 drops of Nux-v. 30c in liquid form, was prescribed for the patient and taken by her. Report of course of treatment: After prescribing the remedy, her Insulin was continued and not tapered, until her FBS decreased from 230 mg/dl to the normal range of 110 mg/dl after 60 days of taking the remedy. Of course she had experienced an aggravation ( a good sign of proper choice of remedy) of her blood sugar which had risen to 290 mg/dl after 3 days of taking the first dose of Nux-v. Thereafter it began to decrease, coming close to the normal range of 110mg/dl after about 2 months on the 13th of December 2008. Her remedy was repeated every other day after potentizing(vigorous shaking of remedy increases its power ). I started to decrease her Insulin gradually, along with strictly monitoring her FBS and evening BS for about 3 more months. Of course I talked to her and suggested her to try to follow her diabetic and homeopathic diets, too. Her second remedy was Sulph according to her new situation after taking Nux-v (Homeopathic remedies are produced on the basis of dilution instead of highly concentrated drugs in conventional medicine which can cause serious unwanted symptoms and disorders). Fortunately she helped me by following her diets. She had become more energetic and more hopeful so she showed good cooperation. After one year of treatment, I followed up the case and asked about her condition and her feelings. She was happy and content with her treatment. She had not experienced hypoglycemic spells after taking Sulph, which used to be one of her main problems during sleep. Her last tests results have been: FBS of 135mg/dl, HA1c of 8 and blood pressure of 110/70 mmHg. They were all happy about her significant healing and cure. She is taking 10 units of NPH Insulin in mornings and 4 in the afternoon. i.e. 4 units have been tapered during the last year and a decrease of 95 mg/dl has been earned. 
CONCLUSION: The results of this case report, as an observational study, reveal multi- potential characteristics and capabilities of the prescribed homeopathic remedies, Nux-vomica. and Sulphur. They not only decreased the patient’s FBS and HbA1c but also improved her mental situation especially her disappointment altered to being hopeful, as well as some physical symptoms like cramped state.

Rave Integrating Medicine: Health Care For Everyone

Have you ever visited the doctor with a complaint that you couldn't put your finger on? Maybe you feel tired more than usual, or you have a persistent, irritating pain in your side, but the doctor can't find any cause. That kind of experience can be really frustrating, because that's the point that you realize the holes that exist in the American medical system.

I don't have a problem with American medicine: I appreciate it for what it is. In the past few years, however, I've come to appreciate other ways of thinking about health, wellness and medicine, and how they can be used in conjunction with modern medical science.I did my masters capstone on the differences in the Western and Eastern medical models, and when I began to read into the history of each, I was fascinated by the ways people have developed completely opposing medical systems, and amazed with the idea that combining these very different ideologies could give us more complete health care now.Chinese Universities and hospitals have been integrating Western and Chinese medicine for over fifty years, with amazing results. A friend of mine has a degree in Integrative Medicine from the Beijing University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, which is a 6 year degree that combines undergraduate, Chinese medicine, and Western medical degrees for the best outcome in every case. For example, my friend was head of a stroke wing at a hospital in YiWu, China. They incorporated not only the life-saving emergency measures used by Western hospitals everywhere, but they used acupuncture and Chinese herbs to help their patients recover more brain power, motor skills and ability to do daily tasks. For some people, that was the difference between ending up paralyzed in a home and walking out of the hospital to get on with their lives.For emergency situations and infectious disease, there is nothing like Western medicine. If I am in a car accident or I'm poisoned by E.Coli, I'm heading straight to the emergency room, because there's a good chance the people and technology there can save my life. But for smaller problems: back pain, carpal tunnel, declining health, fatigue, insomnia, addiction, and chronic health problems, there isn't much a western M.D. can do for you. He may prescribe pain medication or give you a cortizone shot, but there is no mechanism for him to get at the reason for your problem.Chinese medicine, however, has a completely different world-view on health, symptoms, causes of illness, and diagnosis, and if explained well, it often makes a lot of sense. They take a more holistic approach to healing, with more emphasis on prevention and catching problems early before they become dire.So next time the doctor runs some tests and comes up empty, think about taking a whole new perspective on your health. Whether through Chinese Medicine, acupuncture, Ayurveda or some other holistic ideology, you may just find what you're looking for, and it might even change your life.
Courtesy:Leah Healthnet
San Jose CA

Revolution in Cardiology- Absorbable Stents to Replace the Metallic Stents

Cardiologists at Apollo Hospital, Chennai have successfully used a drug-coated absorbable stent in two patients, aged 68 and 70years, 15days ago. Both the patients are medically fit. These surgeries are part of the last phase of clinical trials being conducted across the world.Cardiologists are looking forward to replace the metallic stent used for clearing blockages in an artery with a drug-coated absorbable stent. This drug coated stent can be absorbed in the body within 2years of restoring the blood flow. One advantage of using absorbable stents over metallic stents is that, patients with absorbable stents can be taken off the blood thinning medicines, unlike patients with metallic stents who have to continue with these medicines lifelong. The material used to make this stent is the same that is used for making absorbable sutures and implants. The stent is then coated with an anti-cancer drug which prevents the clotting up of the artery. Within 2years this stent degrades into carbon dioxide and water.Consultant cardiologist at Apollo Hospital, Dr. Sai Satish said, "This is another revolution in cardiology. If the trial succeeds, this stent is likely to replace all the existing ones." Director and head of interventional cardiology, Dr. Mathew Samuel Kalarickal said, "Drug-eluting stents have been proven safe, but the presence of a metal in the body makes doctors anxious. It is good to have a device that can be absorbed after it does its job." This product has been approved for marketing in Europe and will be available there from next year, while it is expected to be available in India by 2013. As part of clinical trials this stent will be implanted free of cost across 100 centers in the world, including 6 from India- Apollo Hospitals and Madras Medical Mission from Chennai, Escorts Heart Research Institute in Delhi, SGPGI in Lucknow, Care Hospital in Hyderabad and SAL Hospital in Ahmedabad.


Travel Websites Must Incorporate Malaria Warnings for Safety of Travelers

Travel websites will do good to educate people about the risks of malaria, with special emphasis on informing those who book for holidays in the last minute. This advisory follows the recent cases of imported malaria in U.K travelers, who were on the way back from Gambia, a malaria endemic region and a much sought-after holiday destination..Nowadays, travelers make use of websites to book for holidays, more-so in the last minute. This means travelers are not getting time to get a prescription for anti-malarial drugs. The three tourists who came down with malaria had made use of the same travel website for booking good deals and had failed to take the preventative drugs. They all got severe Malaria within 2 weeks of returning home. Doctors said , "Many travel websites and holiday brochures, including the website used by our patients, make no specific reference to the risk of contracting malaria.Travel websites need to include explicit messages about taking medical advice and effective chemoprophylaxis before travelling to malaria-endemic areas. Advice on allowing sufficient time to organize this might reduce the particular risk to people making late bookings.



Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Antioxidant Supplements May Help Boost Male Fertility

A review by University of Auckland has found that couples who struggle to have a baby may benefit from antioxidant supplements. The review provides evidence from a small number of trials that suggest the partners of men who take antioxidants are more likely to become pregnant.Male subfertility affects one in 20 men. Chemicals called reactive oxygen species (ROS) are said to cause damage to cells, and in particular sperm cells, which may result in lowered sperm counts and interfere with their ability to fertilise eggs. Antioxidants include natural and synthetic chemicals, including certain vitamins and minerals, which help to reduce the damage caused by ROS. The review focused on 34 trials involving 2,876 couples undergoing assisted reproductive techniques such as in vitro fertilisation and sperm injections. Most men in the trials had low sperm counts or low sperm motility. The trials explored the use of many different types of oral antioxidants, including vitamin E L-carnitine, zinc and magnesium.Compared to controls, a couple was more likely to have a pregnancy or live birth if the man took antioxidants. However, these results are based on just 964 of the couples in the review for pregnancies and 214 couples for live births. Other trials tested the effects of antioxidants on sperm motility and concentration and showed mostly positive effects, although study group sizes were small. "When trying to conceive as part of an assisted reproductive program, it may be advisable to encourage men to take oral antioxidant supplements to improve their partners' chances of becoming pregnant" said lead researcher Marian Showell, who works in Obstetrics and Gynaecology at the University of Auckland in Auckland, New Zealand. "However, these conclusions are currently based on limited evidence." There were not enough data comparing different antioxidants to reach any conclusions about the relative effectiveness of supplements. "We need more head-to-comparisons to understand whether any one antioxidant is performing better than any other," said Showell. 






The high value potential of India’s meditourism has remained a distant dream for many years until a handful of dynamic promoters came forward to make it viable and successful. One among those handful was the Chennai based Wellspring India Meditour. Wellspring India Meditour is the product of years of planning and building relationships and a synergy of various people whose core competencies range from hospital management, healthcare professionals, hospital promotions communication, media planning, events management, public relations, operations, travel planning, administration, hospitality and customer care.Wellspring Meditour has already tied up with entities in overseas locations in the Middle East, Africa and Asian countries where teams of dedicated for this service. Wellspring India Meditour adopted a strategy of studying the local conditions, the healthcare services available, the healthcare In Bahrain Wellspring enlisted Al Hilal Hospital and launched its service which was attended by the members from various Insurance Companies, Corporates and doctors practicing in various medical centers and clinic. 
practitioners, the mandatory and compliance needs, the patient care practices obtained in each country and the like. Branded as International Patient Programme Al Hilal hospital announced its participation with Wellspring India Meditour to facilitate the sick and needy to avail of the best medical services in various Indian Hospitals.Wellspring saw to it that the local authorities and the Indian embassy personnel were involved in these seminars which were attended avidly by the local doctors.H.E. Dr. George Joseph, Ambassador of India to the Kingdom of Bahrain launched the programme at the hospital. Speaking at the event he said “when I say I am happy, I really mean it because the concept of this extended service will benefit many expatriatess as well as Bahraini patients.”Participating in the function John Iype, Chairman, Indian Community Relief Fund said that the programme will benefit the local Indian community in a big way. Under the programme, even poor patients can get the facility of choosing the right kind of hospital, estimates for the treatment, and admission and consultation arrangements in India. Wellspring India Meditour will facilitate these in India without any service charges.
The government of Kingdom of Bahrain has initiated the launch of an exhibition called “Global Health & Wellness Bahrain Expo 2011” between 12th and 14th January 2011 in Bahrain that coincides with our efforts there. The Indian Embassy in Bahrain has decided to host an exclusive “India Pavilion” to showcase “Medical Facilities in India for Critical Ailments” and Wellspring India Meditour has been officially authorized by the Embassy to suitably market and to facilitate the participation of eminent healthcare institutions in India.Several Indian healthcare institutions have expressed their desire to participate in the ‘India Pavilion’ in the healthcare expo and promote their brand and capabilities.On the one hand Wellspring India Meditour provided a platform for eminent healthcare professionals and doctors from India to evangelize the concept of meditourism and the practicality of getting treated in Indian hospitals.On the other Wellspring in collaboration with the local hospitals conducted health camps where patients had consultations with the doctor from India.To make the local doctor community as part of the whole process, wellspring planned to hold Continuing Medical Education programme frequently disseminated by eminent Indian doctors in various disciplines. In Muscat Well Spring India in collaboration with Fortis India group arranged CME programme anchored by Dr. Usman Shabbir Ahmed on gastrointestinal issues which was attended by over a 100 local doctors.Besides CMEs, Wellspring India in collaboration with local hospitals organized health camps where patients were provided consultation.The present network of wellspring includes well known internationally approved hospitals in India like Apollo Hospitals, Fortis Hospitals, Sri Ramachandra Medical Centre, Narayana Hrudayalaya, Global Hospitals and Lakeshore Hospital. Many more are being enlisted. Wellspring is also networked with some of the best Ayurvedic institutions like Kadavu Ayurveda Resort, Vaidhyaratnam Oushadhasala, Sreedhareeyam Ayurvedic Eye Hospital, Somatheeram Ayurvedic Health Resort.Wellspring India Meditour provides point to point co ordination and service to the patient. The services do not carry any additional costs to the patient. “There is total transparency in our operations and the patient will know the total cost of the package well before undertaking the treatment.”All other services like hotels, local travel, translators and so on are provided at the cost price. The treatment cost itself is at a price normally applicable to everyone without discrimination.Wellspring helps patients decide on the doctor, the hospital and the cost of the whole process of travel and treatment right where they are.The reason behind the rush in getting treated in India is not difficult to guess. It is a combination of brains and technology.And Wellspring India Meditour is the best facilitator to get the best of these brains and technology,

Sidhha: Good carrier opportunity in Traditional Medicine

Siddha Vidya means medicine that is eternally perfect. Even though this form of medicine lost currency after the allopathic strain was introduced, it has now started gaining popularity again. TEAM AVENUES gives you the details of this medical profession, based on 18 principal siddhars, which is now being practised widely all over and is, thus, a good career opportunity in alternative medicine.The Siddha system of medicine also known as Siddha Vidya, is the oldest among the ancient Indian medical systems. Around 10,000 years old, Siddha Vidya is considered to be of Dravidian origin and has all its literature in Tamil. The word siddha comes from siddhi which means an object to be attained or perfection of heavenly bliss.Siddha can be termed a scientific art founded by siddhars or evolved souls (numbering 18). Of these 18 Siddhars, Agasthiyar is the foremost and his work is considered outstanding in Siddha Medicine. More than just a medical system, Siddha is a method dealing with intense spirituality and possibility for the betterment of human beings. In short, Siddha medicine means Medicine that is eternally perfect. Like Ayurveda, Siddha is also a traditional medicinal system of India. Siddha originated and flourished in Tamil Nadu, South India while Ayurveda is prevalent both in south as well as north India. The basic concepts of Siddha medicine are the same as those of Ayurveda. In both systems, the basis of treatment is the three-element theory or tridosha (three humours). The three humours are Vatha (air), Pitta (bile) and Kapha (phlegm). It is believed that without these humours an individual cannot exist and imbalance of these may cause diseases. The major factors that affect or disturb the equilibrium state of these three humors (tridhoshas) in our body are diet, physical activities, environmental factors and stress.
The basic concept of the Siddhars, 'food is medicine and medicine is food' very appropriately captures the holistic approach adopted by Indian systems of Medicine. According to Siddha medicine, there are seven elements viz. saram (plasma), cheneer (blood), ooun (muscle), kozhuppu (fat), elumbu (bone), moolai (nerve) and inthiriyam (semen) that are responsible for physical, physiological and psychological functions of the human body. These seven elements are activated by three components or humors viz. vatha (air), pitha fire or heat or energy) and kapha (water).Siddha medicine system has a vast wealth of drug knowledge. In Siddha, medicines are based mostly on herbs and metallurgy. Preparations are made mainly out of the parts of the plants and trees such as leaves, bark, stem, root etc., but also include mineral and some animal substances. Powdered gold, silver and other metals extracts from pearls and corals, and juices of herbs are mainly used for the manufacture of Siddha medicines. The use of metals like gold, silver and iron powders in some preparations is a special feature of siddha medicine, which claims it can detoxify metals to enable them to be used for stubborn diseases. The treatment of Siddha medicine is aimed at keeping the three humors at equilibrium state in the body thereby keeping the seven elements in normal condition to have a healthy body and mind. The Siddha system include not only medicine and alchemy but also yoga and philosophy.

Educational Qualification To become a siddha practitioner one should have bachelors degree in Siddha (BSMS). There are Siddha medical colleges which offer undergraduate and post-graduate degree courses. The duration of undergraduate course Bachelor of Siddha Medicine and Surgery (BSMS) is 5 1/2 years and post-graduate course MD (Siddha) is three years.
Like other forms of medicine, the minimum qualification for a bachelor course in Siddha is 10+2 with PCB (Physics, Chemistry & Biology). However, arts and humanities students can also apply. Additionally, for pursuing a course in Siddha system, you need knowledge of Tamil language. Admission/selection to this course is made based on a Common Entrance Examination.
Skills required
To be successful in this field, practitioners should have good memory and recollection ability, service mentality, patience, self confidence, logical and analytical mind, decision making ability, communication and counselling skills. Apart from all the above they must possess a strong sense of responsibility as the patient's life depends on him.
Job Prospects
Siddha medicine is gaining popularity both within the country and abroad because of its wider acceptance as an alternative system of medicine and due to the least side effects as compared to modern medicine. Employment opportunities are available for those who opt for a career in Siddha medicine depending upon one’s qualification and experience. Private Hospitals, Clinics, Nursing homes, Health Departments, Medical colleges etc. located in different parts of the country. Drug and pharmaceutical companies and research institutions also hire consultants and research scientists to work in their respective fields. With several recognised institutions offering full-fledged courses of study, there is considerable opportunity in the teaching and academic sector as well. Private practice is a popular choice for those specialising in this system. 
Tambaram Sanatorium, Chennai
Akila Thiruvithamcore Siddha Vaidya Sangam Siddha Maruthuva Kalloory and Hospital, KanyakumariAnandasramam, Munchirai , Kanyakumari
Palayamkottai , Tirunelveli, Tamil Nadu
Government Siddha Medical College, Tamil Nadu
National Institute of Siddha, Chennai
RVS Siddha Medical College, Coimbatore
Kumaran Kottam Campus, Kannampalayam, Coimbatore
Santhigiri Siddha Medical College Hospital, Thiruvananthapuram
Courtesy:The Pioneer

Indian govt offers 20 scholarships on traditional medicine

The Indian Government is offering 20 scholarships to Malaysians who want to pursue traditional medicine.This follows the visit of Indian Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh in October last year.“The High Commission welcomes applications from interested Malaysians who wish to pursue courses on traditional system of medicine,” the Indian High Commission said in a statement yesterday.“The High Commission welcomes applications from interested Malaysians who wish to pursue courses on traditional system of medicine,” the Indian High Commission said in a statement yesterday.The scholarships will be offered for studies in selected colleges.Application forms are available at the Education Section of the Indian High Commission here.Candidates should check their eligibility for the course they wish to pursue, should be proficient in English and should not have any serious health problems.The scholarships do not include air travel but provides tuition fees, living allowances, contingency grants, house rental allowance and medical benefits.The closing date is Feb 21.
For enquiries call             03-2093 3510       ext 410, fax 03-2092 2339 or email

Research Finds Few Surgeons Seek Help for Suicidal Thoughts

A report in the January issue of Archives of Surgery, one of the JAMA/Archives journals says that as many as one in 16 surgeons reported having suicidal thoughts in the previous year, but few sought help from a mental health clinician.Death from suicide is more common among physicians than among the general population or among other professionals, according to background information in the article. "Although suicide is strongly linked to depression, the lifetime risk of depression among physicians is similar to that of the general U.S. population," the authors write. "This observation suggests that other factors may contribute to the increased risk of suicide among physicians. Access to lethal medications and knowledge of how to use them has been suggested as one factor; however, the influence of professional characteristics and forms of distress other than depression (e.g., burnout) are largely unexplored." Tait D. Shanafelt, M.D., of Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn., and colleagues surveyed members of the American College of Surgeons in 2008. The anonymous survey included questions regarding suicidal ideation (thoughts or plans of suicide) and the use of mental health resources, a depression screening tool and assessments of burnout and quality of life.Of 7,905 participating surgeons (a response rate of 31.7 percent), 501 (6.3 percent) reported thoughts of suicide during the previous year. Older surgeons were more likely to report suicidal thoughts—surgeons age 45 and older had 1.5 to three times the rate of suicidal ideation of the general population. Being married and having children were associated with a lower likelihood of suicidal thoughts, and the risk was higher among those who had been divorced. 




Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Biofeedback Treatment for Anxiety, Migraine and Blood Pressure

Biofeedback is a feedback system where changes in physiology are detected and controlled. It is very helpful in treatment of many disorders, especially anxiety, migraine & blood pressure.

Biofeedback refers to a number of clinical techniques which provide feedback concerning the changes in a particular physiological response that the patient is unaware of, so as to enable the patient to modify the physiological response and to deal with it. 
The aim of biofeedback is to make a person who is in an anxious state to become aware of the physiological changes and seld manipulate to be in a relaxed state. The term is derived by combining ‘bio’ with ‘feedback’ where bio refers to physiology of the body and feedback refers to messages or information sent back to the source by becoming aware of these messages. Therefore, biofeedback means to become aware of the messages coming from the body, so that they can be altered.
The first step is to understand which muscle groups in the body becomes tense when the person is in a in a state of anxiety Once this realizations sets in the next step is to use this finding, along with the help of any relaxation technique, to relax these muscle groups consciously. This mechanism helps the patient to consciously try and reduce or alter the physiological changes that occur frequently under stressful conditions.
Researchers have developed biofeedback systems and equipments to accomplish the feedback mechanism. There are three steps in the biofeedback process:
 The first step includes creating awareness about the physiological changes taking place within the body in a particular state.
 The second step involves transforming this awareness into signals, usually with the help of a biofeedback machine.

 The third step includes utilizing these signals to control the physiological state and alter it to normal or relaxed physiological state. 
However, all this requires concentrated training. The patient is trained in relaxation techniques, usually deep breathing and/or PMR (Progressive Muscle Relaxation), to aid in altering the physiological changes. Feedback is usually provided using sensory - either visual or auditory - modes of presentation. In some cases both sensory modes are used simultaneously.





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