World of Medicine

Reader's Digest Asia Pacific - - Health -

More Sup­port for Sim­ply Mon­i­tor­ing Prostate Cancer

When non-ag­gres­sive cancer is dis­cov­ered in the prostate, one op­tion is ‘ac­tive sur­veil­lance’ (AS). As long as the tu­mour stays harm­less, the pa­tient doesn’t un­dergo ra­di­a­tion or surgery – or suf­fer any of their side ef­fects, which can in­clude blad­der prob­lems and im­po­tence. A re­cent study of 82,429 men aged 50-69 showed no sig­nif­i­cant dif­fer­ence in the mor­tal­ity rate a decade af­ter di­ag­no­sis ­be­tween those who chose AS and those who re­ceived treat­ment.

Don’t Bring ‘Su­per Bac­te­ria’ Home with You

Plan­ning an over­seas trip? If you end up with dreaded trav­eller’s di­ar­rhoea, you may want to steer clear of tak­ing an­tibi­otics for it. A Fin­nish study found that an­tibi­otics in­crease your chances of get­ting colonised by bac­te­ria that pro­duce ex­tend­ed­spec­trum beta- lac­ta­mase (ESBL), an in­testi­nal bac­te­ria that’s re­sis­tant to peni­cillins and other an­tibi­otics. Chil­dren and the el­derly are most at risk for get­ting sick from ESBL. In­stead, soothe your stom­ach by drink­ing a lot of wa­ter and tak­ing an an­ti­motil­ity med­i­ca­tion such as Imod­ium.

Cocoa and Cof­fee Combo Boosts Mood and En­ergy

Drink­ing mocha lat­tes has been found to im­prove at­ten­tion spans. Re­searchers from Clark Univer­sity in the US mea­sured the mood and cog­ni­tive per­for­mance of 24 peo­ple af­ter they drank caf­feine dis­solved in wa­ter; cocoa; both sub­stances com­bined; or a ­placebo. The best re­sults came from the blend: cocoa in­creases cere­bral blood flow, im­prov­ing cog­ni­tion and at­ten­tion, but also lessens the ­anx­i­etypro­duc­ing ef­fects of the caf­feine while sup­ple­ment­ing its at­ten­tion-en­hanc­ing pow­ers. So drink up.

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