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Kidney treatment breakthrough offers hope for those suffering diabetes

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SYDNEY: A groundbreaking new treatment for kidney disease has demonstrated tremendous hope for “hundreds of millions of people around the world suffering from diabetes.”

The results of the landmark medical trial undertaken by the George Institute for Global Health in Sydney showed on Monday that kidney failure reduced by 33 percent, heart failure fell 30 percent and major cardiovascular events decreased by 20 percent.

Developed to lower glucose levels, the drug canagliflozin was tested in a study of over 4,000 people in 34 countries.

According to the lead author of findings Professor Vlado Perkovic from the George Institute for Global Health, the need to find a new treatment for kidney disease is urgent, with rates of diabetes skyrocketing around the world.

“Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure worldwide but for almost two decades there have been no new treatments to protect kidney function,” he said.

“This definitive trial result is a major medical breakthrough as people with diabetes and kidney disease are at extremely high risk of kidney failure, heart attack, stroke and death.”

“We now have a very effective way to reduce this risk using a once daily pill.”

Confident the medication can be dispersed immediately, co-author Associate Prof. Meg Jardine said with 5 million people worldwide predicted to have kidney failure by 2035 and hundreds of millions more suffering from diabetes, “this is a major breakthrough.”

“What we have shown is that this drug not only protects people with diabetes from developing kidney failure, but it also protects them from heart disease, heart failure and other cardiovascular complications,” she said.

“Importantly, it also helps people who already have reduced kidney function and are at particularly high risk.”

 

 

 

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Sindh health minister appeals to parents not to refuse OPV teams

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KARACHI: Sindh Minister for Health Dr. Azra Pechuho here on Monday urged parents not to refuse the vaccinators visiting their homes for administration of oral polio vaccine (OPV) even if their children may have been regularly covered under routine immunisation.

Talking to journalists following the inaugural of the national OPV campaign at the Sindh Emergency Operation Centre for Polio, she said the additional drops received by their kids under OPV hold no hazard but simply boost immunity of the recipients.

“The exercise is meant to provide blanket cover to all children against the virus that persists in our environment,” said the health minister who is also a senior doctor.

Acknowledging that a reluctance has been registered among many of the affluent families in easing access of their under-five children to the mobile teams of vaccinators, engaged in door-to-door oral polio immunisation campaign, she said the elitist mindset has to be done away with.

She urged the media, both print and electronic, to make people realise that OPV being administered at the clinics of renowned pediatricians or that of government-run dispensaries or by authorised mobile teams are of same quality arranged by the government through Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

 

 

 

 

 

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Countrywide anti-polio campaign commences

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Countrywide anti-polio campaign commences

ISLAMABAD: A countrywide campaign to administer anti-polio drops to children under five years of age starts on Monday.

National Coordinator Polio Eradication Programme, Dr Rana Safdar said the anti-polio drive will target 39 million children in all four provinces, Azad Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan.

He urged the people to cooperate with polio teams to administer drops to their children against this crippling disease.

 

 

 

 

 

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FDA approves first medical device to treat child inattention

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WASHINGTON: The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved this week the first medical device to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) for children.

The device called the Monarch external Trigeminal Nerve Stimulation (eTNS) System is the first non-drug treatment for ADHD authorized for marketing by the FDA.

The prescription-only device is indicated for patients ages 7 to 12 years old who are not taking ADHD medication.

“This new device offers a safe, non-drug option for treatment of ADHD in pediatric patients through the use of mild nerve stimulation, a first of its kind,” said Carlos Pena, director of the Division of Neurological and Physical Medicine Devices in the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health.

ADHD is a common disorder that begins in childhood. ADHD patients have difficulty in staying focused and paying attention.

The cell-phone sized device generates a low-level electrical pulse and connects via a wire to a small patch that adheres to a patient’s forehead, just above the eyebrows, according to FDA.

The device delivers the low-level electrical stimulation to the branches of the trigeminal nerve, sending therapeutic signals to the parts of the brain thought to be involved in ADHD.

Brain imaging showed that eTNS increases activity in the brain regions that are known to be important in regulating attention, emotion and behavior, but the exact mechanism of eTNS is not yet known.

The stimulation feels like a tingling sensation on the skin, and the device should be used in the home under the supervision of a caregiver during periods of sleep. Clinical trials suggest that a response to eTNS may take up to four weeks to become evident.

 

 

 

 

 

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