Signs you might suffer from cataracts
Mostly suffered by people above 40, cataracts is one of the most common types of eye disorders in the world.
Cataracts is the clouding of the eyes’ crystalline lens and, although it is common, those with the condition are often diagnosed only after it becomes severe, thejakartapost.com wrote.
Below are six signs that you might be developing cataracts, as compiled by Reader’s Digest:
1. Blurry vision
Blurry vision can be caused by various things, so, according to Joseph Fishkin, a comprehensive ophthalmologist and cataract surgeon, the most important symptom to be aware of in detecting cataracts is assessing whether the condition of the eye lens has worsened over time, becoming cloudy.
His advice? Consult your doctor as often as you can to figure out the real reason behind your blurry eyesight.
2. Trouble reading small text
If getting new glasses doesn’t help with this problem, then you might have cataracts, which causes proteins in the lens of your eyes to clump together, making it difficult to discern small print.
Hence, problems with blurry reading and distance vision, said Scott MacRae, ophthalmologist and
chairman of the Public Health Committee with the American Academy of Ophthalmology, could be signs of cataracts.
3. Decreased color perception
As your eyes become clouded, colors that you see will appear faded and increasingly less vibrant over time.
Michael Nordlund of the Cincinnati Eye Institute said patients would also see all things as yellowish, which is why patients who have undergone surgery perceive colors as more
vibrant than before, as they are not used to such clear vision.
4. Sensitivity to bright lights
If low lighting stings the eyes, you might have cataracts. Heightened sensitivity to all sources of light, including lamps, headlights and the Sun, is a common sign of the condition.
According to ophthalmologist James Schumer, cataracts disrupts how light travels to the back of the eye.
5. Trouble driving at night
Driving at night can be dangerous for someone suffering from cataracts as the condition makes balancing the darkness of night with bright traffic lights difficult.
Shoshana Ungerleider, internal medicine physician at Sutter Health’s California Pacific Medical Center, said reading road signs also proved troublesome for patients.
6. Double vision
Known as diplopia, double vision is another important symptom of cataracts.
As the size of the cataract grows, said Dean Hart, optometrist and professor at Columbia University’s School of Medicine, the cloudy lens is worsened, disrupting the way light passes through. If only one eye suffers from it, double vision can occur.
Polio vaccination drive rolled out in 103 public health facilities in Nairobi, Kenya
At least one million children below five years in Nairobi, Kenya, are set to be vaccinated in the ongoing national polio vaccination campaign that kicked off on Saturday.
Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko launched the polio vaccination campaign in the capital city and urged parents and guardians to ensure their children are immunized, capitalfm.co.ke wrote.
The governor also called on stakeholders in the health sector to ensure all children targeted in this year’s vaccination exercise are reached.
Sonko encouraged Nairobi residents to take advantage of the free immunization offered in all the 103 public health facilities in the capital.
“Children under the age of five years are particularly vulnerable to diseases because their immunity is yet to fully develop,” said Sonko.
The campaign will also involve a door-to-door campaign that will see the children reached at their households, while mobile teams will also visit churches, mosques, temples and other religious centers in the city.
Other places targeted include malls, bus stations, recreation and shopping centers.
Governor Sonko assured residents the vaccine is safe.
“The polio vaccine we are administering in this campaign has been tested by the National Quality Control Laboratory and found to be safe,” he said.
Nairobi County Executive Committee (CEC) Member for Health Mohamed Dagane said the county will this year have more teams conducting the exercise.
“We have put everything in place to ensure that the exercise is safely conducted within the stipulated period,” Dagane said.
The county will deploy over 1,500 vaccination teams comprising health care workers and community health volunteers to ensure a successful campaign.
Last year, the campaign targeted 800,000 children in the city with around 600,000 children successfully being vaccinated.
Other counties where the exercise will be conducted include Garisa, Lamu, Wajir, Turkana, Kilifi, Mombasa and Marsabit.
Globally, polio cases have reduced significantly by over 99 percent since 1988.
There have however been reports of outbreaks in Pakistan and Afghanistan.
Staggering numbers of opioid epidemic in US
Over the course of the last three decades, the opioid epidemic has cut a wide swath through American society, from the rural heartland to the largest cities, from suburban middle America to urban neighborhoods.
Tens of thousands of Americans have died each year for more than 20 years from overdosing on the highly addictive synthetic painkillers pharmaceutical companies peddled as groundbreaking and non-addictive when, in fact, they were as addictive as cocaine or heroin, newsadvance.com wrote.
Preliminary data released last week by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta showed that for the first time since the epidemic began in the 1990s, drug overdose deaths decreased from one year to the next. According to data, there were 68,000 overdose deaths in 2018, a five percent drop from the 70,000 or so reported in 2017. While any decrease in the yearly body count in this decades-long epidemic is to be welcomed, the CDC warned that it’s too early to draw any conclusions from its 2018 data. First, the numbers are preliminary and
subject to revision. Second, the death toll may simply have plateaued for one year only after an especially deadly 2017. There’s no reason, the agency said, to believe we’re at the beginning of the end of the epidemic.
The CDC report coincided with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) opening its massive database on opioid distribution to the public. Spanning the years 2006 to 2012, the DEA tracks every, single pain pill manufactured and sold in the United States. In those years, there were 380 million transactions processed for prescription pain killers, with a staggering 76 billion pills pumped out. Deaths specifically caused by opioid overdoses during this seven-year period numbered more than 100,000 — by way of comparison, slightly more than 58,000 American troops died between 1955 and 1973 in the Vietnam war.
Another statistic for comparison’s sake is the death toll on the nation’s highways. The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration recorded an estimated 40,000 fatalities in highway crashes in 2018, a slight one percent drop from 2017’s 40,231. Keep in mind, drug overdose deaths in the same year amounted to 68,000.
So how did these little pills of addiction and death make their way into virtually all reaches of American society?
The just-opened DEA database and documents revealed in the discovery phases of several high-profile civil trials against the drug industry shed light on the pipeline from Big Pharma’s production lines to the neighborhood pharmacy, with a friendly prescriber in the middle. And the picture the data paints is stunning.
The Washington Post has created an online portal that’s searchable by state and locality that’s filled with statistics on the epidemic; it can be accessed at https://wapo.st/2Lw9Euy. When searching it, a disturbing picture of how this public health crisis grew emerges.
For example, two Virginia cities had the highest per-capita distribution rates of opioids in the nation between 2006 and 2012. Norton, a small city in far Southwest Virginia, had the highest per-capita distribution rate of 306 pills per person during this time period, with Martinsville in Southside Virginia — a city of just over 13,000 residents — a close second with 242 pills per person.
Statewide, the database reveals 1,596,911,249 pills prescribed in Virginia during this time period with Cardinal Health being responsible for the distribution of more than 329 million pills.
Drill down into the numbers to the local level, and the picture becomes even more staggering:
● Lynchburg: Almost 27.5 million pills distributed with CVS, Cardinal Health and Walgreens companies responsible for nearly 19 million.
● Amherst County: 5.6 million pills with CVS, Walmart and Cardinal Health companies responsible for more than 5.3 million.
● Bedford County: Nearly 8.3 million pills with CVS, Walmart and Cardinal Health companies distributing more than 5.3 million pills.
● Campbell County: 5.9 million pills with CVS, N.C. Mutual Wholesale Drug and Cardinal Health companies responsible for distributing more than 4.6 million pills.
● Appomattox County: 4.4 million pills with AmerisourceBergen Drug and CVS companies distributing nearly 3 million between them.
● Nelson County: More than 2.4 million pills distributed with the largest distributor — AmerisourceBergen Drug Company— responsible for 1.6 million pills.
The scope of the epidemic is simply mind boggling. Billions of dollars have been spent at all levels of government over the last couple of decades to combat the opioid epidemic: Health care dollars, law enforcement dollars, social service dollars. Tens of thousands of people have died from opioid overdoses. As various lawsuits against the drug industry, including one brought by 49 state attorneys general, advance, this public health crisis and its ramifications will be with the Americans for decades to come.
NHS app dedicated to weight loss could help prevent type 2 diabetes in UK
Type 2 diabetes affects over four million people in the UK and those numbers are growing every day. Lifestyle plays a huge role in developing the condition and with obesity at an all time high, a new UK National Health Service (NHS) backed app hopes to get Britons healthier and reduce their risk of developing the condition.
With research further stating the number of people developing diabetes due to being overweight is set to double over the next two decades, and the number of adults and teenagers with diabetes more than doubling in the last 20 years, it’s clear that something must be done, express.co.uk wrote.
Already, the NHS spends over £1.2 million per hour on diabetes care alone. In light of this recent research, it’s never been more apparent to look for opportunities to help tackle the problem at hand, finding a sustainable solution for those who wish to lose weight.
OurPath is an NHS backed platform dedicated to sustainable weight loss and lifestyle change.
The app was created by co-founders, Chris Edson and Mike Gibbs, advisors to the NHS as a way to tackle the increasing number of serious and life-threatening, preventable diseases such as type 2 diabetes.
The weight loss app hopes to tackle the diabetes epidemic and help save the NHS.
Using the latest scientific research in nutrition and behavioral psychology to make the change as simple as possible, OurPath uses cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) as a means to weight loss, guiding individuals towards a personal, attainable goal, and one that is aligned to the values they have set out.
This digital platform aims to promote healthy lifestyles and behavioral changes to prevent the onset of Type 2 diabetes.
The evidence supporting the effectiveness of CBT is strong, particularly those who find themselves with binge-eating behaviors.
Combined with a weight loss program, CBT has been shown to be five to10 percent more effective than traditional dieting, helping people reach their goals through a simple shift in mindset.
Drawing on the latest scientific research in nutrition and behavioral psychology, OurPath aims to make the process as sustainable as possible.
Mike Gibbs, founder of OurPath said: “We started OurPath to try and make a real dent in the number of people living with type 2 diabetes, and to help reduce the amount of money spent by the NHS on managing lifestyle diseases.
“Our goal now is to try and be the solution to anybody looking to make long-term healthy lifestyle changes, and lose weight without partaking in the unsustainable nature of fad diets.”
The app works by assigning a person with their own personal mentor and qualified nutritionist or registered dietician. Advice and 24-hour support throughout the three month plan is available.
Genes and procrastination
People often assume that procrastination is a choice and that the
personality trait is a sign of laziness. However, new research suggests that genes may play a role, medicalnewstoday.com wrote.