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Aspirin and cancer prevention

Published ธันวาคม 21, 2015 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/life/Aspirin-and-cancer-prevention-30274016.html

HEALTH MATTERS

A year ago, I discussed bowel cancer and its various therapeutic approaches, which included its prevention with a simple daily dose of aspirin, one of the most commonly used medications.

A statement from the well-respected US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) in September further reinforced the usefulness of aspirin as a cancer preventive pill for some individuals.

Although still in draft form pending public comments, the new and bold recommendations from the USPSTF state that the taking of a daily dose of aspirin by certain adults in their 50s can not only prevent cardiovascular disease but also colorectal cancer.

Bowel cancer or colorectal cancer (CRC) is the third leading cause of cancer death in men and women in the US. It affects mainly older adults above the age of 50, peaking at 70 years of age. Importantly, colon cancer can be cured if detected early enough and even avoided through regular screening that includes a colonoscopy procedure from the age of 50.

Aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid) has been widely studied for its multiple pharmacological effects. First synthesised in the late 19th century, aspirin possesses an antipyretic effect (reduces fever), acts as a painkiller (for minor pain) and also has anti-inflammatory properties.

In the early ’70s, its blood thinning effect was discovered and its efficacy in preventing blood clots in people who suffered a heart attack was subsequently recognised. Now aspirin is routinely used for lowering the risk of heart attack and stroke. And with a large number of cardiovascular patients taking daily aspirin, its added anti-cancer properties were incidentally observed, especially on tumours in the gastrointestinal tract.

Evidence of aspirin’s anti-tumour effects was later consistently demonstrated in long-term trials involving hundreds of thousands of patients. Aspirin reduces the risk of polyps incidence (the benign growths on the inner lining of the colon that may become pre-cancerous and then advance into full-blown colon cancer), lowers the risk of CRC occurrence by about 20 to 40 per cent depending of the patient’s risk level, and limits the spread of secondary tumours (metastasis) in patients with existing CRC. In hereditary bowel cancer, known as Lynch syndrome, aspirin significantly reduces the frequency of malignant colon tumours and is now considered standard therapy for these high-risk patients.

Many other cancers also appear to be responsive to aspirin’s preventive effects. There is increasing evidence of its help in preventing other malignancies of the gastro-intestinal tract such as oesophagus and stomach cancers as well as lung cancer and, to a lesser extent, prostate cancer.

Inflammation is known to play an important role in cancer development. Aspirin exerts its anti-inflammatory effects in reducing the production of key substances (known as prostaglandins) that promote inflammation. Aspirin’s anti-cancer properties likely result from its sustained anti-inflammatory effects.

Prescribed at a low daily dosage of 80 to 100mg for cardiovascular prevention aspirin, it needs to be used for at least five years to provide significant benefits in cancer prevention.

However, even low-dose aspirin has potentially serious side effects and the medicine is certainly not appropriate for every person between the ages of 50 and 59. Side effects include increased risk of ulcers and stomach bleeding, which can occasionally be serious enough to require blood transfusions. Although a growing number of medical experts believe that in the majority of cases, the benefits of aspirin on CRC prevention outweigh its potential risks, aspirin like any medicine needs to be recommended with regard to its benefits / risk ratio for each concerned individual.

The prevention of bowel cancer also relies on adhering to the proven healthy lifestyle behaviour, that is, no smoking, moderate alcohol consumption, low consumption of red meat, maintenance of healthy body weight and regular exercise. If you are above or approaching 50 years of age, it is definitely worth asking the opinion of your GI specialist when you undergo your next colonoscopy.

DR GERARD LALANDE is managing director of CEO-Health, which provides medical referrals for expatriates and customised executive medical check-ups in Thailand. He can be contacted at gerard.lalande@ceo-health.com.

Health Matters

Published ธันวาคม 21, 2015 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/life/Health-Matters-30273562.html

LIVING/HEALTH

Cirrhosis: the complications

The body’s largest gland, the liver is a vital organ that has many functions, among them the production of bile, the conversion of ammonia to urea, detoxification, and removal of bacteria caused by contamination of the digestive system.

Yet all too many of us seem hell-bent on abusing our livers, whether through imbibing too much alcohol or simply failing to take adequate care of our all-round health.

One of the most serious consequences of that neglect is cirrhosis, a slowly progressing disease in which healthy liver tissue is replaced with scar tissue, eventually preventing it from functioning properly and causing high blood pressure in the liver commonly known as Portal hypertension.

Common complications of cirrhosis include the following.

Oesophageal varices

A consequence of portal hypertension, these are abnormal, enlarged veins in the lower part of the oesophagus – the tube that connects the throat and stomach. Patients with oesophageal varices have a tendency to develop bleeding from ruptured veins, which causes them to vomit blood.

Ascites

Ascites is an excess accumulation of fluid in the abdomen. It is caused by an increased blood pressure of the veins in the liver that leads to the leakage of fluid from the liver. Patients with cirrhosis also tend to have low levels of albumin, a type of protein that helps carry fluid in the blood vessels. Patients will therefore suffer from swelling of the abdomen and legs as well as a bulging belly button. This can be treated by the consumption of diuretics. Infection is a serious complication of ascites. Patients may develop an infection in the abdomen, which may lead to a fever, stomachache and diarrhoea. Diagnosis is made by performing a paracentesis (abdominal tapping) and analysing the fluid for the number of white blood cells or evidence of bacterial growth.

Hepatorenal syndrome

This rare, but serious complication of ascites related to cirrhosis of the liver leads to progressive kidney failure. The cause of this syndrome remains unknown, but it may result from shifts in fluid, impaired blood flow to the kidney, and over use of diuretics.

Hepatic encephalopathy

Hepatic encephalopathy is the occurrence of confusion, altered level of consciousness or coma as a result of liver failure. It is caused by accumulation of toxic substances that are normally removed by the liver. As a result, such toxic substances contaminate the blood circulation, affecting the function of the brain. The patient will experience sleepiness during the day, trembling hands, confused speech or even unconsciousness. The condition can be stimulated by infection or constipation in a cirrhosis patient.

Bleeding tendency

The liver produces the type of protein that forms blood clots. Cirrhosis affects this function causing reduced production of the protein. In addition, a low platelet count caused by portal hypertension and enlarged spleen causes patients with cirrhosis to bleed easier than normal.

Hormonal imbalance

Patients with cirrhosis suffer from a weakened ability to remove some hormones, causing an increase in oestradiol (the female sex hormone). This leads to larger breasts, sexual impotency and infertility.

Treatment of underlying disease includes:

– Finding the cause and treating it to stop the damage of the liver tissue, for example, curing or eliminating hepatitis B and C virus and quitting alcohol.

– Patients with cirrhosis should have an intake of 35-40 kcal/1 kg. Of these, at least 1.2-1.5 grams/day should be of protein because the liver cannot store energy as well as it used to. It is therefore advisable for patients eat 4-6 times a day, including a meal before going to bed. Furthermore, in order to reduce swelling and the accumulation of fluid in the abdomen, patients with cirrhosis should avoid salty food.

– The doctor will order an upper endoscopy to screen for esophageal varices. If found, the doctor may medicate the patient or band the blood vessels of the oesophagus to prevent bleeding.

– Screening for liver cancer is also important. Because patients with cirrhosis are more vulnerable to liver cancer, it is important that they are screened by ultrasound every six months.

PROFESSOR TEERHA PIRATVISUTH AND DR MORAKOD DEESOMSAK are specialists in gastroenterology and hepatology attached to the Liver and Digestive Institute of Samitivej Sukhumvit Hospital. Call (02) 711 8822-4.

LED for the urban lifestyle

Published ธันวาคม 21, 2015 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/life/LED-for-the-urban-lifestyle-30273560.html

LIVING

LED technology allows urbanites to plant vegetables at home without relying on sunlight.

LED technology allows urbanites to plant vegetables at home without relying on sunlight.

he BlueTouch pain relief patch for back pain.

he BlueTouch pain relief patch for back pain.

The wearable BlueControl uses blue light to relieve the pain of psoriasis.

The wearable BlueControl uses blue light to relieve the pain of psoriasis.

 

From urban farming to pain relief, Phillips has an LED gadget for you

ONE OF THE WORLD’S leading producers of everything from lighting and consumer items to medical equipment, Dutch giant Philips spends millions each year on developing new products to match the needs of an increasingly demanding society.

The company recently brought some of its latest innovations to Southeast Asia, staging the Philips Innovation Experience at the Fort Canning Park Hotel in Singapore earlier this month. Ranging from a natty noodle maker to a new LED gizmo that controls pain, it was the first event of this nature organised by Philips Asean and Pacific.

Divided into “Advancing Healthcare,” “Empowering Healthy Living,” and “Smarter Connected Cities” segments, the Philips Innovation Experience also showcased solutions to address the challenges facing the world of today and tomorrow, with much of the emphasis being placed on healthcare services.

Fabian Wong, chief executive of Philips Asean and Pacific, told XP that innovation continues to be the company top priority.

Diederik Zeven, vice president and general manager, added that even though modern medical equipment allows for more effective treatment, the growing grey society means that giving the elderly patients the means to take care of themselves at home will release the burden on over-stretched medical facilities.

While the company declared last year that that it would spin off its lighting operations into a standalone company and combine its healthcare and consumer-lifestyle divisions under the Royal Philips brand, a considerable amount of the research and development continues to rely on the lighting unit.

This was particularly evident in the showcase of healthcare products relying on LED technology using, for example, a certain visible light wavelength called BlueControl to heal psoriasis. The world’s first wearable phototherapy for this skin disease is designed for long-term sufferers of psoriasis with the blue LED light reducing the redness, scaling, thickness and extent of psoriasis vulgaris plaques across the body.

Another the healthcare product suitable for everyday use is the Philips PulseRelief. The app-enabled TENS (Trancutaneous Electronic Nerve Stimulation) device helps users choose and control treatment to relieve pain. PulseRelief offers a drug-free solution to help chronic pain sufferers manage their pain discreetly.

The app, which can be used on both the iOS and Android platforms, allows users to track their pain before and after treatment.

The two TENS units are connected easily with the self-adhesive electrodes by a magnet. The patient simply applies the self-adhesive electrodes to his/her body and snaps on the TENS units via the magnet connection. The TENS units come with a USB adapter and when fully charged can last for up to 8 hours of continuous pain therapy.

While the PulseRelief is suitable for small area, the BlueTouch pain relief patch has wider coverage. According to the Philips.co.uk website, the BlueTouch pain works by sending the blue LED light to the skin, prompting the body’s own supplies of nitric oxide (NO) molecules to be released and transported to the muscle causing pain.

Specially developed for use on the upper and/or lower regions of the back, the use of blue LED light for treating back pain is a world-first in new approaches to therapy. Again, BlueTouch makes pain relief possible without the use of drugs: the blue LED light exclusively supports the body’s own processes for helping with pain relief.

In another showcase of LED technology for the general market, the event demonstrated how the LED system could be applied in shops or supermarkets. Here, the customer downloads an app and then uses the system to check special offers relevant to their location in the store.

Those who live in condominiums will probably benefit the most from a new LED system that allows them to grow vegetables all the year round without the need for sun.

 

Determination and professional help can assist mothers of an adopted baby to breastfeed

Published ธันวาคม 21, 2015 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/life/Determination-and-professional-help-can-assist-mot-30273112.html

LIVING WELL

 

In last week’s “Living Well” column, we examined how breast massage can help the production of breast milk. This week, we talk to an expert on “relactation”

In last week’s “Living Well” column, we examined how breast massage can help the production of breast milk.

This week, we talk to an expert on “relactation” – the process of rebuilding milk supply that has been reduced or dried up after weeks or months of not breastfeeding and “induced lactation”, the process of building a milk supply in a mother who has either never nursed a baby, or who has nursed years before.

“Relactation and induced lactation both take time, patience, dedication, and a lot of work. Proper support is needed for any mother considering either option. A mother can partially or fully relactate but she needs to be trained. Breastfeeding requires a lot of discipline and involves taking medication, especially in the case of an adopted child,” says Dr Sutheera Uerpairojkit, a paediatrician at BNH Hospital.

“Relactation is important especially for those who have problems with breastfeeding. Compelling reasons include a baby who is allergic to powder milk and whose mother has already stopped breastfeeding and a sick infant or newborn with a low birth weight that prevents him/her from sucking and is thus separated from his/her mother.

It is also indicated for a baby who has problems with breastfeeding or a mother who only uses a breast pump causing a decrease in milk production, when either the mother or baby are sick or are in difficult circumstances, for mothers who change their minds about giving powdered milk, and for women who haven’t given birth but want to breastfeed an adopted child,” she continues.

“Research shows the quality of relactation breast milk is the same but it does not have colostrum.”

There are, of course, contributing factors to the success or otherwise of relactation, among them a younger baby, a shorter gap between weaning and relactating, the willingness of the baby to take the breast and assistance from trained breastfeeding support experts,

The best method for increasing milk supply and relactation is to have a baby nursing frequently, as a baby is more likely to return to the breast if there is plenty of milk there. Empty the breasts frequently. Feed on both sides, and feed long enough to drain each breast well.

“The mother should position the baby correctly, ensure a good latch and plenty of time and get skin-to-skin. Skin-to-skin contact can significantly aid the process of relactation. But if a mother and child live in different places, then a good breast pump machine is essential. The mother should breast pump every two hours, and may also take medication,” Sutheera says.

“The mother can produce milk to feed her adopted child. Some countries have a protocol for school-age mothers who decide to have their child adopted at birth. The adoptive mother prepares herself during the teenager’s pregnancy by taking medicine to increase the prolactin hormone and uses a breast pump to re-establish breast milk. By the time she receives the adopted baby, she should have breast milk.”

A 2002 study conducted in India revealed a relactation success rate of 84 per cent in 139 mothers who had children less than six months old. In South Korea, in 2010, out of 84 mothers, 75 per cent were able to lactate thanks to the mothers’ determination, medication and support from families. In 2014, in Malaysia, all 12 adoptive mothers who had never been pregnant were able to breast feed their babies.

“I had one patient who couldn’t become pregnant and so asked a relative to carry the infant. That relative had a multiple birth and thanks to our help and her determination, the mother was able to produce 20 ounces of breast milk a day. ”

CORRECTION

In last week’s Living Well column |we mistakenly run the wrong photo of Dr. Siriporn Kanchana, paediatrician and chair of the Thai Breastfeeding Centre Foundation. We apologise |for the error.

 

Frieda the miracle girl

Published ธันวาคม 21, 2015 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/life/Frieda-the-miracle-girl-30273056.html

Frieda during a checkup in the Fulda Hospital children's department in Germany/Jörn Perske dpa

Frieda during a checkup in the Fulda Hospital children’s department in Germany/Jörn Perske dpa

Frieda when she was aged 18 months./Jörn Perske- dpa

Frieda when she was aged 18 months./Jörn Perske- dpa

 

Europe’s youngest premature baby turns five

Frieda’s birthday is always a cause for especial celebration – because it’s a time when her family remember how lucky they are to have the little girl at all. For a while, Frieda held the record as Europe’s most premature baby to have survived. Now she is flourishing at the age of five.

“She has developed really well, we’re really happy about it,” says Frieda’s mother Yvonne, 38. “The relief is enormous.”

And Frieda? She was delighted about her birthday party on November 7, 2015, which she celebrated with lots of friends and a chocolate cake covered in Smarties.

“I’d like a doll’s house,” she said, before the big day.

According to doctors, Frieda’s case is amazing. She was born in 2010 in the central German city of Fulda at 21 weeks and five days – a normal pregnancy lasts 40 weeks – just 26 centimetres long and weighing just 460 grams.

Such premature babies usually have little chance of survival.

But Frieda is a phenomenon, defying all negative predictions about her future.

She still appears delicate at just under a metre tall and weighing just 12.5 kilograms, but she’s otherwise full of life, cheerful and outgoing.

When she plays board games with her mother she’s engaged and competitive, when she paints during a check-up at Fulda Hospital, she concentrates, totally engrossed.

Her mother’s relief at her normal development is clear.

Premature babies – if they survive – often suffer permanent health problems. Their lungs, intestines, hearing and retinas are often severely underdeveloped and they can suffer brain haemorrhages and disabilities.

Not Frieda though. She’s been going to a playgroup at a local kindergarten for a year now.

“She’s even taking a course, English for Kids, and she’s very musical,” says Yvonne with a smile.

She’s not completely without her concerns though. Frieda sometimes throws up due to an eating disorder.

“She doesn’t notice when she’s had enough,” says her mother. “Her motor function isn’t that smooth either. When she runs or jumps she looks a bit clumsy. And she isn’t strong enough to ride a bike yet. For all that though, she’s cognitively very advanced, she’s very quick to learn.”

The director of Fulda’s clinic for children and young people, Reinald Repp, agrees.

“Frieda’s a little miracle. We can be very pleased with her progress,” he says.

“Physically she has some catching up to do, but she’s always improving. She’s developed appropriately for her age and doesn’t have any problems that go beyond individual characteristics. She can keep up with other children her age in tests, she’s interested in everything and talks very well.”

But it’s difficult to say whether her astonishingly positive development will continue, says Dr Repp, because there’s too little research about the lives of extremely premature babies.

“However at the moment there’s no signs of any particular problems developing. She has a good prognosis, but no guarantees.”

Professor Wolfgang Goepel of the Association of Neonatology and Pediatric Intensive Care also finds it difficult to make a prediction.

“You can’t often predict their development in the long term or reliably forecast how they might do at school.”

But knowledge about premature babies is increasing all the time in Germany, says Repp.

“The children’s chances are improving every year and complications are decreasing.”

Extremely premature babies are surviving more and more often in Germany. Paulina Emily was born in Greifswald at 23 weeks in 2011, weighing 490 grams and measuring 27 centimetres. In the same year in Rostock, another baby was born weighing 650 grams and measuring 33 centimetres.

And in Dortmund a baby weighing only 280 grams, little more than a packet of butter, survived.

Although Frieda’s birthday was a time of celebration for her family, it was also a time of remembrance for her twin brother Kilian, who didn’t make it.

He died six weeks after their birth from heart and intestinal problems.

 

Spider veins: a tell-tale sign of ageing

Published ธันวาคม 21, 2015 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/life/Spider-veins-a-tell-tale-sign-of-ageing-30273055.html

HEALTH MATTERS

Sixty is the new 40, according to a recent survey by scientists who say longer, healthier lives and improved access to healthcare mean people now hit middle age later.

What the study fails to point out, though, is that our bodies have not agreed to stop ageing. And there are a few tell-tale signs of ageing that alert us to that undeniable fact. It can be a wrinkle, sun spots on the back of a hand, hair going completely grey or varicose and spider veins that you swear were not there the day before!

Not everyone will develop varicose or spider veins. |And people who do develop them will do so to different degrees. For some, varicose and spider veins will be a |simple cosmetic inconvenience. Individuals may dread or refuse to wear shorts, skirts, or bathing suits due to the varicose and/or spider veins on their legs; considering them to be their “tell tale” sign of ageing. However, for others, varicose veins will develop beyond being a simple cosmetic inconvenience and will become a significant health concern.

The job of the veins is to carry blood from the body back to the heart and lungs. Unlike the arteries that have the heart to push blood forward through them, the veins rely on valves whose job it is to ensure blood flows one way. Surrounding muscles help move blood forward by squeezing or compressing the veins. If the valves are not working properly then blood has the opportunity to flow backwards and the affected veins swell in order to |accommodate for the extra blood volume.

Many things may cause these valves to fail, with age and family history being the biggest predictors. By the time individuals reach their 60s, approximately 41 per cent will have varicose veins. Moreover, if both parents have or were known to have varicose veins than the likelihood that their children will develop varicose veins is 90 per cent. Likewise, family history is a contributing factor in 80 per cent of spider veins cases.

Pregnancy, a history of deep vein thrombosis (DVT), and trauma are also believed to be strong contributing factors for varicose and spider veins. During pregnancy the hormones oestrogen and progesterone are elevated causing the veins to relax in order to compensate for the added blood volume created during pregnancy. The extra pressure caused by the added blood volume and a growing uterus can build up in the veins to the extent that the valves in the lower limbs are damaged. DVT’ and trauma can cause direct damage to valves within a specific area or limb. Regardless of how the damage to the valves is caused, blood from the lower limbs is no longer returning to the heart as efficiently as it was before.

Even though varicose veins and spider veins share the same underlying causes they appear differently and the health implications differ. Varicose veins are thicker, can appear bulgy, and are often described as rope-like. Depending on how significantly the circulation is compromised, the veins may become painful, itchy, and may even lead to open sores on the skin. Moreover, the affected leg can become swollen, feel heavy, and the nearby muscles may suffer from cramping pain at night.

Alternatively, spider veins look more like purplish threads located close to the skins surface. They generally aren’t painful or itchy, and their presence doesn’t lead to any swelling or cramping in the affected leg.

If an individual is experiencing the uncomfortable symptoms of varicose veins or wishes to have varicose and/or spider veins removed for cosmetic reasons, he or she should see a physician with experience in this area. Vascular surgeons or plastic surgeons are two types of |specialists who are trained in this area.

The physician will first perform a physical exam and ask many questions. Then, depending on the severity of the varicose vein(s), the physician may recommend a duplex ultrasound be performed. This ultrasound assesses blood flow and will therefore show which valves are and are not functioning.

Treatment options should be discussed thoroughly as recommendations can vary widely depending on the wishes of the patient as well as the severity and location of the varicose or spider vein(s). If the varicose or spider vein(s) are not a cosmetic concern or physically bothersome, one may be advised to begin wearing pressure stockings and to frequently elevate his or her legs. This will prevent blood from pooling in the lower extremities, encouraging it to flow towards the heart. If one wishes to have his or her smaller varicose or spider veins removed for primarily cosmetic reasons, this can be accomplished by injecting the vein with a substance that will destroy it. The remnants will then be safely reabsorbed by the body. However, if one wishes to have larger veins removed due to cosmetic and/or the negative signs and symptoms associated with varicose veins the recommendation is generally surgical removal, with or without the aid of laser or radiofrequency.

Definitive treatment works 95 per cent of the time. However, one needs to be aware that new varicose or |spider veins can develop with time.

Varicose and s pider veins don’t need to be the “tell tale” sign of ageing. A physician can advise you on the treatment options that will target the painful and/or |cosmetic symptoms associated with varicose and spider veins. A visit to the physician can potentially take that 10 years off your legs and improve your circulation.

DR KHAMIN CHINSAKCHAI is a Vascular Surgeon at Samitivej Sukhumvit Hospital.

Why massaging your breasts is better for baby

Published ธันวาคม 21, 2015 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/life/Why-massaging-your-breasts-is-better-for-baby-30272599.html

 

The most nutritious food a mother can give her baby, breast milk is vital to a child’s development during the first six months of its life and an excellent supplement when given as a complementary food until the youngster reaches the age of two or even more.

But while the milk seems to be unlimited, any mother who stops breastfeeding for less sthan four weeks will find her breast milk gone.

Breastfeeding helps with maternal bonding and lactation as it releases the hormone oxytocin, sometimes referred to as the “cuddle chemical”, which has been shown to help development of IQ, EQ, as well as executive functions – the set of cognitive skills necessary to plan and manage life’s tasks.

One of the biggest obstacles to breastfeeding here in Thailand is that mothers need to return to work after just three months of maternity leave. This consideration was discussed in depth at the recent annual breastfeeding conference, which boasted the title “Breastfeeding and Work – Let’s Make it Work!” The meeting called for an increased commitment and action from all stakeholders to provide support for working mothers so that they can combine breastfeeding and work. Female employees, it stressed, should be entitled to fully paid maternity leave, access to a workplace lactation room, breastfeeding breaks and flexible work hours.

Dr Siriporn Kanchana, chairperson of the Thai Breastfeeding Centre Foundation, took the opportunity of the conference to emphasise therapeutic breast massage during lactation, as this helps prevent stagnation, empties the breast and releases tension, thus allowing the mother to be relaxed while breastfeeding.

“Many mothers are concerned about their milk production. They think that can’t provide sufficient milk to meet their infants’ requirements. More often than not, this concern is driven by external factors,” she says.

“There are surprisingly few paper studies about this and we’d like to do more.

“Our brain is an incredible organ, very smart. There is always milk in our breasts for the baby, and more milk is made while we feed. So if you don’t empty breast or if the baby does not breastfed often enough, can’t suck the nipples and the holding position is not right, less milk will be produced. This is when massaging the breast comes into play. Experts advise mothers to massage their breast to trigger enhanced milk production. The breast massage should be gentle just like having a facial massage. When mother relaxes, she will not stress out and the milk flows,” Siriporn says.

Common massaging procedures include applying warm compress on the breast. Simply soak a towel in warm water and place it on your breast before conducting the actual massage procedure. Stroke the top of your breast down towards on the nipple. Apply a gentle touch while stroking, which promotes oxytocin stimulation while relaxing your body,” she adds.

And Siriporn notes that anyone who’s uncertain about the procedure need only check out the video clips online,

“Sometimes, a mother waits for the breasts to fill but that’s not good as it can cause stagnation. This often happens to mothers using breast pumps because the machine suction is not as good as the baby’s. Once she gets home she should give the baby her breast as soon as possible. Doing a breast massage regularly before feeding can help prevent stagnation,” Siriporn continues.

“Several studies highlight that women switching their infants to formulas significantly decreases milk production since the body does not feel the changes caused by breastfeeding demands. It is important to empty the breast. When the breast is clear, the mother is happy and the baby is full.”

Mothers can also take advantage of bath time to massage their breasts and use soap as a lubricant.

Lactating mothers are advised to drink lots of water as this boosts milk production. Taking the baby to bed and nursing is also good, as it relaxes both mother and baby, in itself one of the most powerful ways of increasing milk supply.

 

Colon cancer in children: A parents’ guide

Published ธันวาคม 21, 2015 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/life/Colon-cancer-in-children-A-parents-guide-30272582.html

HEALTH MATTERS

With various campaigns urging people over 50 years old to be screened for colon cancer (colon or rectal cancer), it is not surprising that most people associate this disease with older adults.

However, the third most diagnosed cancer can affect younger adults as well, and it can also strike children. Most colon cancers are slow growing, and an estimated 95 per cent are potentially curable if they are diagnosed early enough. However, only 40 per cent of adults are diagnosed at the local stage, and colon cancer in children is even less likely to be spotted early on.

With only around three out of every 15 million kids diagnosed with colorectal cancer, it is not surprising that it is not immediately suspected in youngsters. However, there have been cases of toddlers under three years old developing this deadly disease, and even one case of a five- month old baby being diagnosed. Unfortunately, the lack of obvious symptoms means that diagnosis consequently tends to be later in children than it is in adults, according to a study published in the Journal of Paediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition. When it does occur, colon cancer is far more aggressive in children, which means, in concert with late diagnosis, it can be a particularly dangerous form of cancer in kids.

While a family history of cancer can increase the likelihood of colon cancer in both adults and children alike, when it occurs in children, the disease is often due to an abnormality in the colon tissue. This can result in a tumour, or a polyp, which can then develop into cancer. Early screening can detect any abnormal tissue before the cancer cells develop. Early treatment can then begin to minimise the threat.

One of the major obstacles to early detection of colon cancer in children, as well as in adults, is that the symptoms are sometimes vague or may even go unnoticed for some time. However, symptoms to watch out for are blood and/or mucous in the stools, pencil-thin stools, frequent diarrhoea or constipation not caused by infection, weight loss, nausea and vomiting, abdominal pain, bloating, and extreme tiredness.

The most effective means of diagnosing colon cancer in children is a colonoscopy. Able to identify inflammation of the lymph nodes and other tissues caused by colon cancer, this form of screening allows a camera to look inside the bowel and detect any problems such as polyps. During the procedure, a biopsy can also be performed and the tissue sent for pathological diagnosis to confirm whether any cancer is present and, if so, determine what type of cancer it is.

The next step is treatment, which can also begin during the colonoscopy or may commence after diagnosis, such as a course of chemotherapy. In addition, in the family with colon cancer, gene detection can identify a higher risk of colon cancer.

A colonoscopy is not only a powerful diagnostic tool but also an invaluable aid to treatment. This is especially the case in children because the relatively short colon means that a smaller scope is needed. The colonoscopy enables the observation of any abnormalities as well as irritations in the bowel caused by viral infections or parasites. If there is a family history of polyps developing into cancer, then these can be easily removed during the colonoscopy. A polyp might also need to be removed because it can cause intestinal obstruction, bleeding, anaemia and also abdominal pain.

It is estimated that changes to lifestyle can help prevent up to 75 per cent of colorectal cancer cases in adults. Although there are many causes of colon cancer in adults, there is no clear understanding of what causes the disease in children. Therefore, early screening is essential if any symptoms appear or if there is a family history of cancers, such as polyps developing into cancer cells.

Parents need to be mindful of nutrition to boost kids’ immune systems and lower youngsters’ risks of developing a variety of health issues that are diet related. The mantra is lots of fruit and vegetables and a good variety for antioxidants is key. A healthy balance of fat, protein and carbohydrates is essential for child development, with good bacteria from live yoghurt helping the gut as well.

It is not just what kids eat but also how they eat. Eating patterns, food quality and quantity all need to be considered. Cutting down on processed foods, as well as high-sugar and high-fat content meals is important. With kids enjoying sedentary, screen-oriented downtime more than ever before, getting kids involved with energetic, engaging activities is vital to good health for children and youngsters.

Instances of early onset colon cancer are increasing. What cannot be ignored is the fact that colon cancer is increasingly affecting young adults and children.

To view this disease as an old-age condition is misinformed. With obesity increasing amongst children at an alarming rate, it is paramount that parents start by looking at their own lifestyles and encourage children to be aware of health, exercise, and nutrition at an early age. Serving up foods with fresh ingredients, encouraging body awareness in children, and understanding childhood health issues needs to be high on any guide for modern-day parenting.

PROFESSOR BOOSBA VIVATVAKIN is a specialist in Paediatric Gastroenterology and Hepatology at Samitivej International Children’s Hospital, Sukhumvit Campus. Call (02) 711 8236-7.

A broader look at life

Published พฤศจิกายน 8, 2015 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/life/A-broader-look-at-life-30272115.html

Outdoor education to increase knowledge and enhance conceptual understanding of the community

Outdoor education to increase knowledge and enhance conceptual understanding of the community

Phuket International Academy takes learning far beyond the academic

“Kids need to be encouraged to be happy and healthy in body and mind, and to care for communities and Planet Earth,” says Julian Whiteley, chief executive of Phuket International Academy, glancing out at his young charges as they go about their non-academic chores.

Grade-6 students at this international school in Phuket learn to bake pizza. Grade-8 students are expected to develop their own signature dishes and manage a food chain while Grade-5 students publish their own weekly newspaper, on this occasion raising awareness about the need to keep the environment clean after returning from a trip to a beach covered with medical waste.

At the Phuket International Academy, learning is about far more than studying. The curriculum also involves practical life skills and education outside the classroom, thus allowing the young students to have fun while gaining an education.

Students aged from 18 months to 18 years are stimulated to stay curious, be kind and socially engaged, share ideas as communicators and try new things as risk-takers.

In addition to gaining an intercultural learning experience, Vietnamese student Nhi Tran, 17, who is in Grade 11, happily spends her Saturdays as a volunteer at a local dog rescue centre. Her duty is to help 120 stray dogs find a better home.

“I help promote the centre for dog adoption, raise awareness, and share information online. The more people know, the better,” she says.

This is Nhi Tran’s first time abroad and she’s on a two-year Kurt Hahn scholarship at the PIA.

“When I searched for a school, I looked for more than academic ranking. This is definitely the right place for me,” says Tran, who hails from Hue.

“It’s where I can be myself and do something for others. We try our best to give back.”

While still struggling a little to communicate in English, Tran says she’s making progress and is looking forward to joining the Thimun later this month. The Hague International Model United Nations, to give it its full name, is a not-for-profit educational foundation that has links with the United Nations. Its objectives are to advance the interests of international education across national boundaries, formulate peaceful solutions to the world’s problems and prepare today’s youth for tomorrow’s leadership positions. Tran plans to speak on the topic of terrorism and crime in the online domain.

“It is crucial for children to be kind to themselves, respect themselves and be considerate of themselves while offering the same to others and to the planet. That’s why we focus on services within the school, outside in the community and the planet,” Whitely explains.

“We would like our students to be proud of what they are good at, be genuinely happy and have a purpose in life. Students are also stimulated to take action for a sustainable future,” he adds.

The school also places emphasis on experiential learning. “It is only by being challenged that you grow,” says Whiteley, who has educational management experience in Singaporean schools and won the 2012 CASE (Council for Advancement and Support of Education) Asia-Pacific chief executive leadership award.

“When students say ‘I can’t do that,’ we always add ‘yet’ at the end,” he says, adding that the small class size – approximately 25 students – makes it easier to give the youngsters the chance of seeing and experiencing real life including observing the police as they go about their daily work.

But perhaps what sets PIA apart from other international schools is a curriculum that stresses social and emotional learning and mindfulness in its curriculum.

“We want children to enjoy the moment, interacting with the people around them and not just typing on their smartphones,” the chief executive explains.

A “quiet” time is set aside daily to allow both students and teachers to engage in secularised mindfulness practices.

It is an opportunity to calm body and mind, shifting from the ‘thinking/doing mode’ to the ‘sensing/being mode of mind’. This mode is believed to enhance ability to engage with a calmer, clearer perspective of what is happening within and around us.

Australian Zavier Gates, 13, a grade-8 student who’s been at PIA for a year, loves mindfulness and sports.

“Before entering the school, I had no idea what mindfulness was all about,” says Gates. “I thought that doing nothing for 15 minutes was a stupid idea.”

Now he finds that just 15-minutes of being mindful once a day calms him down and says he looks forward to it as much as he does to cycling.

In conjunction with Thanyapura, a sports-health complex and hotel, the school offers a number of high-performance sports programmes, providing a combination of expert coaching and world-class facilities for aspiring young athletes.

Established since 2008, Phuket International Academy is Thailand’s only international school in the south that is fully authorised to offer all three International Baccalaureate programmes. It has attracted students from 39 different countries worldwide.

Located in tranquil foothills of the Khao Phra Thaeo Wildlife Sanctuary in the east of Phuket, the Academy is working towards becoming a UWC (United World College), whose mission it is “to make education a force to unite people, nations and cultures for peace and a sustainable future.” United World College has 15 schools and colleges worldwide, including in China and Singapore.

Scholarships are available to both Thai and foreign students specialising in swimming, cycling or triathlons as well as to those with an excellent academic performance.

A back pain that can kill

Published พฤศจิกายน 8, 2015 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation

http://www.nationmultimedia.com/life/A-back-pain-that-can-kill-30272114.html

A relatively common and are potentially life-threatening condition, Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA) is all too often a silent killer among the elderly.

Carers, as well as the elderly themselves, should be wary of any abdominal or back pain as these can be a symptom of Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm – the dilation of the blood vessel in the abdominal area.

The pain is caused when the dilated aorta artery puts pressure on the other organs such as the nerves or the arteries. In thin people, a pulsating mass or tumour may also be found in the abdominal area.

If the condition is left untreated, the aneurysm can gradually leak and eventually rupture, causing sudden death. The earlier these symptoms are discovered, the greater the opportunity for timely treatment.

The aorta is the largest artery in the body and is responsible for carrying oxygenated blood from the heart to every part of the body. A dilation or bulge in this artery may be caused by the body itself. The walls of the blood vessel weaken with age, especially in people above the age of 50. Eating food that is high in cholesterol causes fatty deposits in the walls of the blood vessel, thereby clogging it.

Other factors that can cause the condition include hypertension, smoking and an unhealthy lifestyle. An aneurysm can occur in any blood vessel, including the heart, kidney, brain or the abdomen, where it is most common.

For the doctor, it is important to know the patient’s risk factors, whether he or she has hypertension, heart disease or whether the blood vessel in the brain or kidney is blocked. Treatment is carried out by determining the size of the aneurysm. If it is less than 5cm, the physician will conduct an ultrasound and observe the condition of the patient or take a CT scan every three to six months, depending on the patient’s condition.

If the size is larger than 5cm, the physicians will recommend surgery. There are two types of surgeries. Open Surgery is done through the abdomen and this procedure has been used for a long time. The dilated aorta is removed and replaced with a prosthesis made of synthetic material that is sutured into place.

Another type of surgery, one which does not require abdominal incision, is Endovascular surgery. This new surgical procedure involves surgery through the blood vessel and is suitable for patients who have other risk factors.

However, the risk is greater and the costs are considerably higher. Treatment takes seven days and if there are no complications, infections or bleeding after surgery, the patients may return home for rest and recovery.

Prevention is mainly common sense and include paying more attention to one’s health by adopting health eating habits, exercising, taking adequate rest and having regular annual health check-ups with increasing age.

An ultrasound check-up will enable physicians to identify any abnormalities in the blood vessels and in the body’s circulatory system. If there are any clogged blood vessels in the heart, kidney and especially the brain, patients may be at risk of developing a stroke.

Be disciplined in your healthcare now so that you can be happy and free from diseases during your retirement.

DR NARONG JARASVIROJ is a specialist in Laparoscopic surgery and Endoscopy at Samitivej Srinakarin Hospital. Call (02) 378 9000.

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