Doctors often misdiagnose zinc deficiency, unaware of impact of excess zinc

Doctors often misdiagnose zinc deficiency, and seem to be unaware of the impact of excess zinc on the body, shows a small audit of clinical practice. Zinc is an essential trace element that is required in daily quantities of 5.5 to 9.5 mg for men, and 4 to 7 mg for women. But zinc supplements are usually only available in formulations of 45 or 50 mg. Too much zinc, taken in the form of dietary supplements, may disrupt copper uptake, leading to neurological problems and anemia, the evidence indicates.

While there is no evidence to suggest that taking zinc supplements in the short term is harmful, this may not be the case for longer term use, say the researchers. They analysed the case notes of patients prescribed zinc supplements at hospitals between 2000 and 2010. In particular, they looked at the reasons for advising this treatment, whether the patients’ family doctors (GPs) had been warned about the potential impact of high doses of zinc, the duration of treatment, and the development of anemia or neurological symptoms.

The data included lab test results, where available, for levels of zinc, copper, and albumin — one of the main proteins found in blood — plus C reactive protein (CRP). Low levels of albumin (below 25 mg/l) are linked to low zinc levels as are high (above 20 mg/l) levels of CRP.

Zinc supplementation was prescribed for skin healing of conditions, such as pressure sores or leg ulcers in a further 19 cases (38 %), for poor nutrition in 4 cases (8 %), to support alcohol withdrawal in one, and for hair loss (alopecia) in another. Zinc levels were measured before prescribing in over half of all 70 cases (43; 61%). This was low in 37 patients, and thought to have been caused by low albumin or high CRP in 28 (76 %).

In most case notes (94 %) no further information on zinc was recorded, so it was hard to assess how long the supplement had been prescribed for. Thirteen patients developed anemia, a low white cell count (neutropenia), and/or neurological symptoms, all of which are typically associated with zinc induced copper deficiency, say the researchers. In six, these diagnoses pre-dated zinc prescription. Of the remaining nine, five patients variously had peripheral nerve pain (neuropathy), tingling in their fingers (paraesthesia), difficulties with balance and coordination (ataxia), and leg nerve pain.

‘These findings underline the lack of awareness of zinc induced copper deficiency,’ write the researchers, who caution: ‘zinc is an essential trace element, and so clinicians may consider it a safe nutrient rather than a drug carrying potential risk.’

Scientists to thrash out rules on genetically modified humans

Scientists to thrash out rules on genetically modified humans

Scientists in America will collaborate to draw up a set of ethical guidelines around the rights and wrongs of editing the human genome.

The move comes after the shock discovery in April that researchers in China had successfully edited genes within human embryos.

Despite the fact that these embryos were reportedly ‘non-viable’, the work has spurred the US National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Medicine to create a rulebook of what the scientific community considers to be acceptable use of the gene-editing system called CRISPR-Cas9 which allows mutated sequences of DNA to be removed from a fertilized ovum.

Of course, whether or not the world at large agrees to stick by those guidelines is another issue and the intention of the summit is to be open to all in the international community.

DNA editing of human embryos is currently illegal in the UK

No date has been set for the moment, but an important suggestion from Marcy Darnovsky, director of the Center for Genetics and Society in Berkeley, California, is to take the conversation beyond just those with the technical and specific knowledge of genetics.

Politicians, religious groups and human rights organisations have just as an important role to play in what is a fast-approaching field of possibilities set to, very literally, shape the face of humanity, Darnovsky told Nature.

With a greater international and broad-ranging consensus, the tricky issues of when, what and whose DNA we should be allowed to ‘play god’ with are more likely to respected.

It’s currently illegal to genetically modify human embryos in the UK but it can be done in most US States if done without government funding.

The Toxic Truth About Tattoos .

What is your take on tattoos, do you have any? Well, if you don’t and are thinking about getting one maybe you should read this.


People in Europe and America have been obsessed with tattoos for many many years now. I can definitely see why, I have around thirty-three tattoos, and I love them. They make me feel so much better about myself, and every one of them means something to me. A lot of parents are against their children getting them (here lately people are getting their first one quite early in life, I was merely sixteen when I got my first tattoo.) they are concerned that it will be something they won’t like later in life or something that will make it harder for the child to get a job, and in some cases which I’ve noticed is quite often parents just don’t like them and aren’t going to allow it. First off if your child is young maybe even younger than sixteen, he/she might not need to get one because yes they may pick something out that they won’t like later on in life. Secondly, tattoos as long as they’re not disrespectful to a race, religion, gender, etc. they should not be able to keep someone from getting a job. Society today is becoming more open to the idea of tattoos, and it is gradually becoming easier for the tattooed individuals to get jobs. But, either way one tattoo usually won’t make a difference just think about placement. Third, just because you don’t like something doesn’t make it wrong. Your children and the people around you are their own persons. You will have no control over your kids when they get to the legal age of adulthood. If you deny them their right to be themselves now, they might just go out and get four tattoos on their eighteenth or nineteenth birthday and never speak to you again.

Besides as parents you are worrying about the wrong thing altogether! Instead of worrying about whether they will want it later or not, be able to get jobs, or disappoint you; maybe you should try to worry about the health hazards that can come with getting a tattoo. Oh and I think you’d feel a whole lot safer taking your child to a shop and being there while he/she gets their tattoo rather than them ‘spend the night with a friend’ and come home with a tattoo that looks like shit that they got done in some creepy guys garage for cheap, right?

Not all tattoo shops are safe, some of them just aren’t as sanitary as they need to be. You need to talk to the people there and find out if they take all the safety precautions necessary prepackaged sanitary needles, never reuse ink caps, wear gloves, of course, things like that. Some tattoo inks can also contain things like mercury, and that is not good because the ink is definitely permanent. Mercury poisoning is not a fun thing to go through. Any inks obtained overseas are likely to have metals and stuff in them that should not be used in our skin, like the inks on amazon that come with a tattoo gun kit someone is out there likely using, but it states in tiny print that the inks included are only for use on the practice skin they send with the kit. The FDA doesn’t generally regulate the color additives or pigments used for tattoo ink. The regulation is usually done by local jurisdictions. That is unless something bad has happened like an outbreak of some sort in which they have to issue a recall. While most color additives are approved for cosmetic use none of them are FDA approved for injection into the skin at all.

This lack of regulation might make some people uncomfortable since almost forty percent of the people ranging from age 18-25 have tattoos. As well as forty percent of people ages 26-40. Meaning that about forty-five million Americans have tattoos. The FDA’s website also says that some of the pigments used in tattoo inks are not even approved for skin contact at all, Being rather suitable for printers’ and automobile paint though. Tattoo inks can be used on one person and look fantastic, heal great, generally have no adverse effect but the same ink used on a different person could cause infection, allergic reactions, keloids (scar formations), inflammation, and even complications when getting an MRI done.

It all depends on the person and how their body reacts to the ink, and, of course, the sanitation of the place and artist you are going to. If you go into a tattoo shop that uses Unsterile tattooing equipment and needles, you could come out with a whole lot more than just a tattoo. You might end up with staph (Staphylococcus aureus), HIV, Hepatitis, and the list goes on. A study done at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in Dallas has brought about that tattoos might be the number one distributor of hepatitis C. They found that it might account for twice the amount of hepatitis C infections obtained from injection-drug use.

Now I’m sure you’re thinking that tattoos are bad and after reading this you’re never going to get one or allow your children to get them but if you believe that this is bad you have no idea what you’re eating every day or what you’re letting your kids around outside. You think that tattoos are bad because of the things listed above yet you allow your yards to be sprayed with RoundUp and use bug sprays made from DEET which is much worse than anything that could come from getting a tattoo! You eat things that are highly processed and tearing your body apart from the inside out yet you think it is okay to judge people with tattoos? Maybe you should take a step back and hop off of your high horse. Yes, there are bad things that can happen when you get a tattoo, that’s why you sign those papers before you get it done. I wish we could be so lucky as to have to sign papers when purchasing GMO fruit and veggies from the supermarket because there is nothing good about GMO fruit and vegetables.

A 17-year-old invented an ingenious way to stop bleeding instantly .

vetigel gif

Imagine this: you’re gushing blood. Nothing seems to make it stop. Then you apply a gel to your wound, and within seconds, the bleed stops. In minutes, you’re healed.

This is the premise of VetiGel, an algae-based polymer created by Joe Landolina – a 22 year-old who invented the product when he was just 17.

Landolina is now the co-founder and CEO of Suneris, a biotech company that manufactures the gel. Last week, Suneris announced that it will begin shipping VetiGel to veterinarians later this summer. Humans won’t be far behind.

When injected into a wound site, the gel can form a clot within 12 seconds and permanently heal the wound within minutes, says Landolina.

“The fastest piece of equipment we have measures every 12 seconds,”Landolina tells Business Insider. “So we know that it happens in less than 12 seconds.”

The science that makes this all possible is surprisingly basic.

Each batch of gel begins as algae, which is made up of tiny individual polymers. If you break those polymers down into even tinier pieces, “kind of like LEGO blocks,” Landolina says, you can put them into the gel and inject that gel into a wound site.

Once it hits the damaged tissue, whether it’s open skin or a biopsied soft organ – livers, kidneys, spleens – the gel instantly forms a mesh-like structure.

“What that means, on the one hand, is that the gel will make a very strong adhesive that holds the wound together,” Landolina says. “But on the other hand, that mesh acts as a scaffold to help the body produce fibrin at the wound’s surface.”

Vetigel Product Shot


Fibrin helps repair tissue over the long term. It’s what allows VetiGel not only to work fast in sealing leaks, but to actually heal the skin. Within a few minutes of application, the gel can be safely removed.

From classroom to company

For as fast-acting as VetiGel is, its inventor may be faster.

Landolina invented an early version of the gel out of his grandfather’s lab. He was still in high school.

As a freshman at New York University, he and a junior entered the gel in a business competition. Up against graduate students and university professors, they were they only undergraduates that entered. They took second place.

Over the next four and a half years, Landolina turned the prototype into a business. His project partner, Isaac Miller, became his co-founder and CFO. VetiGel started taking shape.

Today, Suneris is bringing VetiGel to the (four-legged) masses. The company is currently taking pre-orders from veterinarian offices and will begin shipment from its Brooklyn offices later this summer.

Vetigel Application


The first product in the rollout is a five-pack of five-milliliter syringes that costs $150. Landolina says Suneris has its sights set on a US rollout first, followed by a release in Europe in Asia sometime early next year. The company has partnered with VetPlus, a British company focused on animal medicine, to expand its manufacturing across the pond.

A few years down the line, Landolina says, the goal will be to expand out of vet offices to help treat members of our own species.

He forecasts receiving FDA approval within the year for testing on human wounds. If all goes according to plan, VetiGel will first help military personnel and EMTs treat traumatic injuries. Then it will enter operating rooms and, finally, individual homes.

Landolina says Suneris has yet to observe any negative side effects of VetiGel. The company holds weekly meetings with veterinarians to ensure the product meets their needs.

VetiGel isn’t the only wound-healing invention of its kind. Another product, named – oddly enough – Vitagel, also helps the body stop bleeding quickly using similar methods.

What’s New in Liposarcoma?

Close-up of medical oncologist Mark Dickson attending a presentation.Medical oncologist Mark Dickson is one of the MSK specialists who treats sarcomas, a rare family of cancers.


In this Q&A, medical oncologist Mark Dickson discusses how people with liposarcoma are cared for at Memorial Sloan Kettering, what’s new in diagnosis and treatment, and the research he and his colleagues are conducting to improve patients’ treatment options.

  • Liposarcoma is a rare cancer of the fat tissue.
  • MSK doctors have a lot of experience diagnosing and treating it.
  • They are conducting several clinical trials of new treatments.
  • Genomic testing is now making personalized treatment possible.

Liposarcomas are tumors that arise in the body’s fat tissue. They are relatively rare, affecting only about 2,000 people each year in the United States. But it’s not an unusual disease at Memorial Sloan Kettering: Our doctors and researchers specialize in this and about 50 other types of soft tissue sarcoma.

Mark Dickson is a medical oncologist who specializes in liposarcoma as well as other sarcomas of the soft tissue and bone and Kaposi sarcoma. In a recent interview, Dr. Dickson discussed the challenges of treating liposarcoma and the research he is doing to improve the lives of people living with the disease by finding treatments that are more effective and less toxic.

How are liposarcomas detected and diagnosed?

Symptoms vary depending on the location of the tumor.  For patient with a tumor in the abdomen, a common symptom is weight gain. A patient can gain ten to 20 pounds because some tumors can be very large [between 30 and 50 centimeters in diameter]. Patients who have tumors on their thighs or arms usually notice them right away. But a tumor in the abdomen might not be diagnosed as quickly since people often think their bellies have grown bigger due to normal weight gain.

Doctors use imaging tests, typically MRIs, to determine how far the disease has spread and to aid in assessing the stage of the tumor. The next step is a biopsy. Since sarcomas are rare, it is important that a surgeon or radiologist who is highly experienced with sarcomas does the biopsy.

Why are liposarcomas so difficult to treat?

Sarcomas are rare, and liposarcomas even rarer. The average oncologist might see one sarcoma in a year. That’s why patients are best off coming to a center such as MSK, where sarcomas are routine, not exceptional.

There are four types of liposarcoma. The most common is well-differentiated liposarcoma, low-grade tumors whose cells look like normal fat cells and grow slowly. Myxoid/round cell liposarcomasare intermediate to high-grade tumors, with the round cell being the high-grade form. Pleomorphic liposarcoma is the rarest but sometimes is a very aggressive disease type. And a dedifferentiated liposarcoma is a high-grade tumor that occurs when a lower-grade tumor changes and creates new high-grade cells.

Patients with well-differentiated liposarcoma can survive for decades, but recurrence is a problem. Simple well-differentiated tumors can be removed surgically and the prognosis is often good, but recurrent tumors are more challenging because the cancer can spread to other parts of the body and surgery may not be an option. Radiation has to be used sparingly to avoid side effects, and chemotherapy does not work well for many liposarcomas.

The five-year survival rate for patients with a high-grade liposarcoma is less than 50 percent. That’s why we’re seeking better treatments.

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What follow-up do patients need after they’re done with active treatment?

Because recurrence can occur from months to decades after the initial diagnosis, people who have been treated for liposarcoma need to be monitored for the rest of their lives. Patients will have follow-up testing — which typically consists of a physical exam and imaging tests to detect metastasis — on a schedule determined by their physician.

Patients are best off coming to a center such as MSK, where sarcomas are routine.
Mark A. Dickson
Mark A. Dickson,Medical oncologist

Are there any clinical trials for liposarcoma drugs taking place?

There are several clinical trials being conducted at MSK that are centered on well-differentiated and dedifferentiated liposarcomas.

We are testing drugs that will turn off certain genes that become overexpressed in liposarcomas, including the genes CDK4 and MDM2. Ideally we will find a drug as effective as imatinib (Gleevec™), which was developed to target the cancer cells that cause chronic myelogenous leukemia and blocks the production of the abnormal protein that causes cancer. Gleevec is also very effective against somegastrointestinal stromal tumors.

We are seeing particularly promising results with the CDK4-targeting drug PD0332991 (palbociclib). To date, 90 patients have taken part in a phase II trial that looks at the drug’s efficacy. In 2013, wepublished a preliminary study in the Journal of Clinical Oncology that found that 70 percent of the 30 patients given PD0332991 for 12 weeks did not have their disease progress during that time. This was a higher percentage than expected. In addition, some patients had significant shrinking of their tumors.

Trials for drugs that can inhibit the overexpression of MDM2 are just under way. We are doing phase I trials with the goal of seeing whether a drug is safe to use — and hopefully showing some efficacy. One of the trials involves SAR405838, an investigational anticancer drug. The purpose of this study is to find the highest dose of SAR405838 that can be given safely in patients with liposarcoma and other advanced cancers that have either continued to grow despite standard therapy or for which no standard treatments exist.

What other research efforts aimed at liposarcoma are happening at MSK?

Among the challenges of treating sarcomas is that they are not one disease but have different subtypes, so there is a lot of variety between different people’s tumors. For comparison, in melanoma, you’ll find a common type of mutations in the gene BRAF that can be targeted with a drug in approximately 60 percent of patients. We will not find these high percentages in sarcomas. However, even finding a clinically relevant mutation present in a smaller number of patients is helpful. I believe that genomic research will be key in helping patients with liposarcomas.

We are utilizing a test known as MSK-IMPACT™, a targeted tumor-sequencing test that can detect gene mutations and other critical genetic aberrations in both rare and common cancers. The goal is to find aberrations that make cancers vulnerable to particular drugs and to match individual patients with available therapies or clinical trials that will most benefit them. To date, we have done sequencing on about 300 soft tissue sarcomas.

Researchers power machines without electricity, using already existing radio waves | Minds

By using radio waves that are already present, the researchers from the University of Washington have enabled devices to talk to eachother by reflection.  They harvest what is known as “ambient backscatter,” radio waves from tv towers and cell phones, enabling routers to send out a consant RF signal and speak to eachother with a type of binary.  When the signal hits an object, it’s treated like a 1 and can be converted into DC power with a ‘rectifier.’  A DC-DC converter can increase the voltage to produce usable electricity.

“We have a huge Wi-Fi infrastructure already in place,” said Vamsi Talla, a PhD candidate at the University of Washington. “If we can repurpose existing infrastructure for power delivery as well, then we can actually enable wireless power delivery in homes and offices.”

This is a dream come true, and is not surprising that it hasn’t been plastered all over the nightly television news.  Many of the corporations that run central media organizations also have strong ties with the copper industry and want to keep people wired (as well as buying electricity).  Regardless, the technology exists and people will soon be using items powered by wi-fi.

Here are two cards; one that changes the data of the other without any external electricity .

watch the video. URL:

Severely intriguing, this technology allows things to connect to eachother and can give the power of data to every day items (like keys, hats, and really anything else you can think of).  By harnessing the already prevalent radio waves bounding around the Earth, they can ping eachother and deliver information, as well as power.  You can read the paper, in which they describe how we will power “the next billion devices with wi-fi.”

Tesla is amped.

Mothers With Big Buts Give Birth To Smarter Kids: Fat in Bottom And Thighs are Essential For The Brains Of The Newborn .

Women are genetically predisposed to carry more fat than men; a fact that frustrates millions of women across the globe. As reported by The Sunday Times, researchers have discovered that the development of babies’ brains depends on fat supplies that are located in their moms’  and thighs, and the amount stored there might directly impact a kid’s intelligence.


According to the study, “Upper-body fat has negative effects and lower-body fat has positive effects on the supply of long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids that are essential for neurodevelopment. Thus, waist-hip ratio (WHR), a useful proxy for the ratio of upper-body fat to lower-body fat, should predict cognitive ability in women and their offspring.

These findings may shed new light on exactly why men are hard-wired to prefer curvier women. According to Cambridge University’s reproductive biologist, David Bainbridge “Because curves are so important in women’s health, over the millennia men have evolved to be hard-wired to desire them. They ‘know’ that a curvy woman is most likely to provide them with healthy children – curvy daughters and curve-loving sons.
Women around the world have yet another reason to embrace those curves, especially those reflected as a lower waist to hip ratio.

Nine negative emotions that you must master for a great life .

Every negative or disempowering emotion is a signal towards a problem which needs to be rectified. Emotions are our friends if we learn how to interpret them correctly.


Our ability to handle your emotions can make or break our life.

When you feel good, you feel God”


Our ability to handle emotions can make or break our life. Unfortunately, there is no school or college that teaches us how to handle emotions. We use a trial and error method to learn emotions and more often than not we fail miserably in our attempts. Most of the people unconsciously developed their emotional reactions based on how their parents, family members and friends reacted to particular emotions.

We all must live in a state of awareness about the disempowering emotions we experience on a regular basis. Here is a list of emotions and the signals these emotions give to us. We must indulge more in empowering emotions and minimize our exposure to the disempowering ones. However, you overpower the disempowering emotions by acknowledging them and taking massive action to cure the problem areas they are directing you towards.

10 disempowering emotions and the signal they give you

Every negative or disempowering emotion is a signal towards a problem which needs to be rectified. Emotions are our friends if we learn how to interpret them correctly.

Fear: Fear signals that you need to develop some skills to breakthrough to the next level. You live in your comfort zone and are afraid to lose what you possess.

fearFear signals that you need to develop some skills to breakthrough to the next level. Doubt: You need to use your reasoning and intuition to take the right step. Doubt is a signal that you need to learn and research more about the issue.

doubtDoubt is a signal that you need to learn and research more about the issue. Guilt: Guilt alludes to the promises you are breaking. We all make some promises to ourselves and to others. When we break our own promises or the trust of people in our lives, we experience guilt.

guiltWhen we break our own promises or the trust of people in our lives, we experience guilt. Anger: We experience anger when someone disappoints us and fails to meet our expectations. We also experience this emotion when we feel hurt or when we are being held responsible for something we did not do.

angerWe experience anger when someone disappoints us and fails to meet our expectations. Gloom: Depression is experienced when we see our problems as permanent. Some people explore depression unconsciously to get sympathy and attention from people around them. Depression is a signal to get out of your helpless state and to find some meaning in your life.



Jealousy: Jealousy is experienced when you think other people are luckier, happier, richer, smarter or better than you. You only see their success but fail to see their struggle. The world only sees the glory but never explores the story behind the glory. Jealousy is a signal to focus and improve your own life rather than wasting time on other people.

jealousyJealousy is experienced when you think other people are luckier, happier, richer, smarter or better than you. (Source: Thinkstock Images)

Insecurity: Insecurity reflects your lack of self-belief and poor self-worth. You think you do not deserve what you have and hence you fear it will be taken away from you. It is a signal for working hard and improving self-concept.

insecurityInsecurity reflects your lack of self-belief and poor self-worth. (Source: Thinkstock Images)

Sadness: Sadness is a signal that you need to take your life to the next level. You are not satisfied with the results you are producing in your life. It is a call for change.

sadnessSadness is a signal that you need to take your life to the next level. (Source: Thinkstock Images)

Shame: Shame is a signal to strengthen your self-esteem and to meet your expectations. You need to evaluate how much importance you will give to the opinion of others.

If you have ever indulged in emotions called anger, self-pity, fear, self-doubt, crying and worrying, you know that after sometime you will surely regret wasting time and energy on those emotions. This is a clear sign that the life-force wants you to be calm, confident and fearless.

Best way to take charge of your emotions
Every time you find yourself caught in a storm of negative emotions take 10 deep breathes and access the emotion of gratitude. Think about the things and people in your life that you are grateful for. Sometimes, you have to force yourself to be positive but it is worth the effort. There is nothing that you will gain by being depressed and worried.

It is very important to experience as many positive and empowering emotions as you can on a daily basis. Try it to believe it. You can never know how much you can change until you make a sincere and honest attempt to change. A good life is full of satisfaction that comes from action, happiness, gratitude and service.


Older Teens, Asians at Highest Risk of Self-Harm

Older teenagers, Asians, females, and those with existing mental disorders had the highest risk among adolescents of incurring a self-inflicted injury (SII), according to a population-based longitudinal study of emergency department data.

Increased risk of SII was found among adolescents ages 15-18 (OR 2.73, 95% CI 2.38-3.14), Asian race (OR 1.67, 95% CI 1.35-2.08), adolescents with comorbid conditions (OR 1.64, 95% CI 1.49-1.80), and females (OR 1.41, 95% CI 1.13-1.77), reported Gretchen J. Cutler, PhD, of Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota, and colleagues.

However, African American adolescents had a lower risk of SII (OR 0.78, 95% CI 0.70-0.87) compared with white and Asian adolescents, they wrote in Pediatrics.

But any adolescent with a SII had a much higher risk of death than adolescents with other injuries (OR 12.9, 95% CI 6.78-24.6). The highest risk was found among males, teenagers 15-18, white race, and those who self-paid for treatment.

Trends varied by demographic group. Cut/pierce was the most common injury in both adolescents ages 10-14 and 15-18, but the younger group was more likely to be associated with suffocation than the older group (15.1% vs. 7.6%, P ≤0.001). While female adolescents were more likely to be seen for cut/pierce injuries, males were more likely to be seen for firearm injuries (P ≤ 0.001).

Adolescents with public or self-pay insurance (OR 1.44, 95% CI 1.27-1.64) had a greater risk of SII compared to those with private insurance (OR 1.15, 95% CI 1.01-1.31). Both alcoholism (OR 2.00, 95% CI 1.64-2.45) and obesity (OR 1.54, 95% CI 1.18-2.00) were also had linked to an increased risk of SII.

Cutler told MedPage Today in a separate interview that she hopes identifying the subgroups of kids at the highest risk for self-harm can aid clinicians in their screening process for suicidal behavior.

“I think knowing some subgroups that are more at risk can help in primary prevention,” she said. “We should increase the use of screening tools in primary care for suicidal thoughts and make sure when these kids come into the ED, they’re getting good care and they’re getting connected to resources once they leave so that we can reduce the likelihood they’re going to come back.”

From 2009 to 2012, there was an overall increase in adolescent visits due to SII (1.1% to 1.6%, P for trend ≤ 0.001). The most common types of SII were cut/pierce and firearm. However, the percentage of firearm injuries from SII declined over this time (27.3% to 21.8%, P for trend=0.02).

Those adolescents with an SII were more likely to have high injury severity (23.8% vs. 17.7% with Injury Severity Score ≥ 16, P<0.0001), less likely to be discharged from the ED (5.3% vs. 15.3%, P<0.001), and more likely to die in the ED (4.3% vs. 0.8%, P<0.001) than their non-SII counterparts. A greater portion of adolescents with SII were associated with alcoholism (3.9% vs. 1.5%) and obesity (1.7% vs. 0.9%, P<0.001 for both).

Researchers examined data from the National Trauma Data Bank (NTDB) for patients 10 to 18 years of age who were treated in the ED for a SII (n=3,664). Of those, 71.6% were male, 58.8% were white, 60.3% were ages 15-18, 85.8% had no comorbidities, and 17.8% were not severely injured (ISS ≥ 16). In addition, 4.9% of these adolescents were diagnosed with any mental disorder, with 47.2% of those diagnoses being depressive disorders.

This is a marked contrast to previous studies suggesting over 50% of SII cases were associated with depression. While not affiliated with the study, Kristin A. Perret, PhD, staff psychologist, Child Outpatient Psychiatry Department at Montefiore Health System in New York City, called it “informative and comprehensive,” but still found the small portion of adolescents with mental health disorders to be significant.

 “Based on the finding that fewer than previously documented individuals visiting the Emergency Department were diagnosed with mental health disorders, this study highlights the importance of a tertiary prevention method within the ED and a need for improved primary and secondary prevention within communities,” said Perret.

Other limitations noted by the authors include an inability to determine if some SIIs were repeat visits or to determine the difference between suicidal and non-suicidal behavior, as well as the fact that while all level I and level II trauma centers are required to report data to the NTDB, it is not a representative sample.

Cutler spoke about the need for continuous outpatient care for kids who leave the ED after incurring a SII. She is currently applying for a grant for a text message-based program to follow up with kids after their ED visit to make sure they’re getting appropriate outpatient care.

“The mental health system currently is underresourced and the emergency department is really bearing the burden of a broken mental health system, so I think there needs to be more attempts to increase inpatient and outpatient care for children and adolescents,” Cutler concluded. “It’s an important area that needs more resources and more research, and it really is an opportunity for primary and secondary prevention to help these kids.”

Fashionistas, beware: Hazards of skinny jeans revealed in new study

APphoto_Dangers of Skinny Jeans

Doctors in Australia report that a 35-year-old woman was hospitalized for four days after experiencing muscle damage, swelling and nerve blockages in her legs after squatting for several hours while wearing skinny jeans.

Doctors explain why squatting in skinny jeans can lead to nerve damage in the lower legs.
The dangers of squatting in skinny jeans, revealed at last.
Head’s up, hipsters: A new case study suggests that wearing skinny jeans can lead to serious nerve damage in your lower legs — if you spend the day in a squatting position.

In a report in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry, a team of doctors relay the cautionary tale of a 35-year-old woman who wound up lying prone on the pavement, unable to get up, after spending the day in skinny jeans while helping a relative move.

Why conservatives might be better at dieting than liberals
Why conservatives might be better at dieting than liberals
The anonymous woman recalled that her jeans seemed a bit snug when she pulled them on in the morning, said Thomas Kinder, of the Neurology Unit at the Royal Adelaide Hospital in Australia who lead the study. However, it was only after she spent hours squatting while emptying cupboards that she noticed her legs were feeling increasingly tight and uncomfortable.

When she was walking home later that evening the woman found that she could no longer move her feet properly, causing her to trip and fall. She spent several hours on the ground before she was discovered and brought to the hospital, according to the report.

By the time the doctors saw the patient, both her legs were so swollen below the knee that the medical team had to cut the jeans off her. She also had severe weakness in her feet and ankles and was not able to walk. Kinder said she was treated with intravenous fluids, but it still took four days for her to use her legs normally again.

“We believe it was the combination of the squatting and tight jeans that caused the problem,” he said.

Kinder explained that prolonged squatting has been known to lead to compression of the peroneal nerves, a set of nerves near the knee joint. Squatting has also been shown to reduce blood supply to the calf muscles.

In this case, the woman’s calf muscles responded to the lack of blood by swelling, but because she was wearing skinny jeans, the muscles swelled “inwards”, compressing another set of nerves called the tibial nerves and further cutting off blood supply to the muscles.
“If the woman had been wearing loose trousers, the calf muscles could have swollen ‘outwards’ rather than ‘inwards,’ thus avoiding pressure on the nerves and blood vessels,” Kinder said.

He added that there are no previous reports of squatting alone causing either tibial nerve damage, or such severe calf muscle swelling and damage.

The woman received IV fluids because the muscle damage had caused the severe breakdown of muscle fibers, which could have led to kidney damage if it had not been treated with IV hydration.

Kinder said that the takeaway from the study is that people should not squat for long periods of time, especially while wearing skinny jeans.

“If they experience leg discomfort or tingling while squatting they should stand up and walk around,” he said.

In addition — if you are doing a job that requires a lot of squatting, take the skinny jeans off and put on loose or stretchy pants instead.