What the experts do to stave off dementia: After exciting new drug breakthrough, our guide to the precautions you can take to lessen your chances of the condition
Survey after survey shows that dementia is the disease we fear more than any other, even cancer — and last week came the news that there is now a new treatment for it.
A drug called aducanumab has been given the go-ahead by U.S. regulatory authorities — making it the first new drug for the condition to be approved in 20 years.
Dementia is an umbrella term for several brain diseases that affect memory, thinking and cognition. Treatments such as donepezil (brand name Aricept), rivastigmine (Exe...
Every night for the past 15 years, Annette Ritchie has struggled to fall asleep. She is kept awake by sensations pulsing through her legs which give her a relentless urge to move them.
When she lies down or sits still for long, niggling sensations ‘like ants crawling in my blood’ develop in both limbs.
‘I have this irresistible urge to move my legs, as it’s the only thing that relieves the feelings,’ says Annette, 52, a former council worker who lives in Inverness with husband Andrew, 57, a s...
The pace of scientific research holds the promise of dramatically improving the lives of people living with non-communicable diseases (NCDs). Finding ways of extending the benefits of the most innovative treatments to all who need them will be the biggest challenge facing global health policymakers.
FORESIGHT Global Health asked five global health experts what the future of medicines for non-communicable disease (NCDs) looks like and what innovations we can expect to see.
THE RESEARCH VOICE
Is this why so many can't beat IBS? For millions, irritable bowel syndrome is the default diagnosis for tummy troubles. But experts say two-thirds of cases could be caused by another ailment… which is CURABLE
For more than 17 years, James Lavers was assured by several doctors that the bloating and pain he experienced on and off from his early 20s was irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). His story is far from unique.
Gut complaints are extremely common, accounting for one in five GP consultations and millions of over-the counter sales of gastric relief products, for everything from acid reflux and bloating to diarrhoea. And IBS, thought to affect up to 14 million people in the UK, is a very common diagn...
Young families have been under tremendous pressure from all directions during the Covid-19 pandemic. Journalist Jo Waters investigates what new parents, babies and toddlers, and parents of young children have been experiencing and asks what support they will need.
The list of lockdown stressors for new parents has been endless: mothers giving birth in hospital with midwives in PPE, sometimes without their partners (Ostlere, 2020), and limited hands-on support from friends and grandparents due...
One tearful patient begged her not to leave. Others had to be put to bed at 7.30pm. Young carer describes the daily reality for the elderly betrayed by our creaking social care system
For five years, Sumia Hussain, 26, has worked as an agency carer, providing for the personal needs of her clients as well as preparing their meals, often feeding them and doing light housework.
Here, Sumia describes in heartbreaking detail a recent typical shift. As the Mail backs the Alzheimer’s Society’s call to end the social care scandal, Sumia’s account lays bare the shameful lack of support for some of the most vulnerable and lonely.
3pm: Ethel is tearful and asks me not to go
Today, I ...
Young people are emerging as the pandemic’s collateral damage. Their mental health and education are under strain, and their struggles include anxiety, isolation and poverty. Journalist Jo Waters asks what can be done to support them.
The Covid-19 pandemic has severely disrupted our children’s lives – emptying schools for the best part of a year, causing a spike in levels of child poverty and mental health problems and revealing a shocking digital divide in education. One commentator compared...
It isn't the jab you need to fear - even mild Covid can trigger deadly clots: With reports of people shunning the AstraZeneca vaccine, we look at the (very rare) risk
Robin McNelis’s Covid-19 symptoms were so mild he didn’t know he’d had the disease.
It was only when a routine test at the hospital where he works as a respiratory physiotherapist came back positive that he found out his headache and fatigue were caused by the virus.
‘I was surprised to be told I had tested positive and should stay off work,’ says Robin, 47, who lives in Stapleford Abbotts, Essex, with his wife Nikki, 45, a project manager, and daughter Maya, 13.
‘I’d had no temperature or dr...
A Victorian girl visits Jon all the time, but he knows she's not a ghost: Incredibly, people with sight problems often have terrifying hallucinations... from bleeding zombies to gargoyles
Every day throughout lockdown, Jon Attenborough has been visited by a small, ghostly girl in Victorian costume, who appears at his breakfast table.
‘She’s aged about seven and dressed in a white-frilled school pinafore,’ says Jon, 31, a freelance finance officer and disability campaigner who lives in Perth, Scotland.
‘She has a blank expression but stares straight into my face. Until the first lockdown she only came around three times a week, but since the pandemic she’s come every day.
Tastiest way to beat diabetes: Nine out of ten of all Covid deaths are in the world's most obese countries – and Britain is one. Boris has got the message... he's slashed his carbs. Now we'll show how YOU can too!
Let me start with an embarrassing confession: for years, patients with a weight problem were among my least favourite cases to deal with as a doctor.
Back then they filled me with despair, because despite giving them the suggestions set out in official guidelines, they rarely — if ever — lost weight, and the health of those with type 2 diabetes so often just got worse.
When I look back, I see now that it was my fault: I gave poor advice, then blamed my patients when it didn't work.
But now I'...
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The world is getting heavier, with obesity spreading at an alarming rate across the globe. Worldwide incidence of obesity tripled between 1975 and 2016. According to the World Health Organization (WHO) most people on the planet live in countries where they are more likely to die because they are overweight and obese, than because they do not have enough to eat.
“Obesity is a gateway disease for other chronic conditions,” says Ximena Ramos-Salas, policy and resear...
Can a bacteria toothpaste really fight decay? It's not just yoghurts that contain 'probiotics'... now they are in an essential bathroom product too
Probiotics — so-called 'good' bacteria — are key to a healthy microbiome: the trillions of microorganisms that live in the colon, mouth and skin, which are linked to digestion, immunity and inflammatory skin conditions.
Probiotic products used to come mainly in capsules and yoghurts, but now you can get snacks, toothpastes and drinks, too.
JO WATERS asked experts to assess a selection and we then rated them.
Bioglan Biotic Balance Chocballs, £14 for 30 balls, tesco.com
People with glaucoma sometimes ask clinicians what they can do to reduce their risk of losing their vision, and whether lifestyle changes could help. But what does the currently available evidence show?
“Patients ask about how drinking too much coffee or certain yoga positions may raise intraocular pressure [IOP],” says Dr Laura Edwards MCOptom, Specialist Optometrist at Moorfields Eye Hospital. “Others have questions about supplements and herbal remedies, and whether they help lower IOP. I g...
Boost your gut feeling: From a tummy massager to gummies and a tracker app, which is the best for IBS?
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) affects one in ten adults in the UK, causing bloating, diarrhoea, constipation and cramps.
There is no one cause — which is why it’s notoriously difficult to treat — but triggers include overindulgence, an imbalance of gut bacteria, infections and stress. This may explain a possible recent spike in cases, given the stress of getting through a particularly difficult Christmas, and the fear of catching Covid-19.
JO WATERS asked Peter Whorwell, a professor of medic...
Like a 'punch in the stomach', is how Megan Willis felt on hearing that her eight-week-old baby with partner John Hall had a life-limiting muscle-wasting disease.
'It was devastating — almost too much, too painful to process,' says Megan, 29, an events manager, who lives with John, 36, a retail manager, in Colchester, Essex.
Little Edward has the genetic condition spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), in which the lack of a protein called SMN, vital for muscle development and movement, results in pr...