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Vitamin C supplements are found to have these benefits

Vitamin C is extremely important and contributes to overall health. Packed with a wide range of impressive health benefits, the water-soluble vitamin is present in numerous fruits and vegetables such as oranges, strawberries, kiwi fruit, bell peppers, broccoli, kale, and spinach. Nutritionists recommend a daily Vitamin C intake of 75 mg for women and around 100 mg for men. Although it's generally suggested that one should meet their vitamin C requirement from the food one eats, a number of people switch to supplements to address their nutritional needs. Before you consume any type of Vitamin C supplements, it is essential to consult a medical practitioner to avoid any discrepancies. Here are some highly significant medically-tested advantages of consuming vitamin C: Vitamin C is necessary for collagen synthesis. As we know, Collagen is an integral structural component of connective tissue, blood vessels, tendons, ligaments, cartilage, gums, skin, teeth, and bones. It helps in maintaining the skin natural elasticity to render a younger-looking skin and reduce skin-sagging. Vitamin C also assays a cardinal role in the synthesis of the neurotransmitter, 'norepinephrine' which is crucial for optimal brain functioning and impacts mood sensations. Vitamin C also has a critical role in enhancing the body's immune function, which can get hindered on account of nutritional scarcity. Vitamin C is also an extremely efficient antioxidant. Even in small traces, vitamin C aids in safeguarding various essential molecules in the body like proteins, lipids, carbohydrates, and nucleic acids (DNA and RNA) from damage by free radicals. The free radicals damage can be produced during routine metabolism as well as through contact with various toxins and air pollutants i.e. smoking. It has also been ascertained that vitamin C can also restore other antioxidants like vitamin E. The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), which extends scientific recommendations to facilitate medical policymakers, has corroborated the following health benefits that come with the regular dietary intake of vitamin C in one's diet: It assists in safeguarding essential cell constituents from the damage caused by free radicals It improves the rate of collagen formation and assists in the normal functioning of blood vessels, skin, bones, cartilage, gums, and teeth It further helps in increasing the rate of non-heme iron (found in plant-based foods) absorption It also regulates the standard operation of the nervous system Vitamin C also proves instrumental in bolstering the body's natural immunity It also assists in preserving the routine functions of the immune system both before and after an intense physical workout. It also supports the redevelopment process of the abridged form of vitamin E Furthermore, it also aids in curtailing tiredness and fatigue levels in the body. Having understood the importance of Vitamin C in our lives, we must strive to include Vitamin C in our everyday diet to ensure the proper functioning of the body and enjoy healthy disease-free living. If you are unable to receive the prescribed amount of Vitamin C from your conventional diet, you can also resort to using over-the-counter and safe-to-use Vitamin C supplements. However, it is prudent to consult a doctor or a nutritionist before consuming any form of supplements. Also Read: Film buffs across India can now watch the European Union Film Festival online This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

28 November,2022 06:24 PM IST | New Delhi | IANS
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Bladder infection has long-term health consequences if left unchecked: Experts

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Urinary tract infections or UTIs are a common occurrence mainly affecting women’s health. According to a 2020 study published in the International Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Research, UTIs occur in both men and women, but the incidence rate in women is higher when compared to men. Nearly half of the women population experience at least one episode of UTI in their lifetime, with 20-40 percent of them exhibiting recurrent episodes. Several studies in the past have recorded a higher prevalence of such infections among females in different parts of India. As Dr Manzer Altamash Shaikh, consultant obstetrician, gynaecologist and fertility specialist at Masina Hospital explains, the urinary tract or system comprises of kidneys, ureters, bladder and urethra and infections of any of these parts is called as urinary tract infection. The commonest UTI is infection of the bladder and is generally termed as urinary tract infection or UTI. However, Dr Manjiri Mehta, consultant gynaecologist  and obstetrician at Hiranandani Hospital cautions, “Bladder infection is essentially limited to the urinary bladder and has no progression to the upper organs. Hence, these terms should not be used interchangeably.” Mid-day Digital reached out to city-based experts Shaikh and Mehta to understand more about the bladder infection and its impact on health. What are the most common causes of bladder infection among women? Shaikh: Infections of the bladder are more common in women due to shorter length of the urethra that means the bacteria have a shorter length to travel to bladder and proximity of the urethral opening to vaginal and anal orifice which help the bacteria from bowel to reach the urethra and the bladder. It could be due to washing from back to front after defecation. In younger women increased sexual activity is a major risk factor. In older women, general debility, diabetes, antibiotic use or catheterisation predisposes to bladder infection. The act of urination flushes out bacteria from the urethra and prevents them from ascending to the bladder. In metro cities like Mumbai due to busy work culture and sometimes due to unhygienic state of health faucets women avoid drinking water, this coupled with hot and humid weather results in women urinating less frequently resulting in increased chances of getting urinary tract infections. Mehta: Poor hygiene, use of harsh skin products, diabetes, post-coital infections (occurring during or after sexual intercourse), use of vaginal diaphragm and non-lubricated condoms can also lead to UTIs. It can occur throughout the year, but we do see a small rise during summer. This is due to multiple factors like sweating, lack of adequate water intake and dehydration. The lifetime incidence of UTI is 50-60 per cent. This happens most commonly in the age group of 18-30 years. What are the common symptoms? Mehta: Common symptoms of bladder infection are: 1.  Increased frequency of passing urine 2. Painful urination 3. Burning sensation while passing urine 4. Passing urine frequently but just few drops 5. Cloudy or blood-tinged urine in severe cases 6. Pain in the suprapubic region (centre of lower abdomen) 7. Mild fever, body ache and nausea The prevalence is mainly observed among which age-groups of women? Are children equally susceptible? Shaikh: The prevalence of urinary tract infection increases with age and in women more than 65 years the rate is almost doubled. It is more common in women during the reproductive age group and elderly women however it can be seen during childhood as well. In women of reproductive age group, in addition to above mentioned risk factors, others include unclean sanitary practices during menstruation, catheterisation, kidney stones, using diaphragm or sponges as birth control etc. In young girls, the commonest cause is immature lining of the urethra and the bladder. How does it affect the menstrual cycle and pregnancy? Shaikh: Urinary tract infections per say do not affect menstruation except for pain and discomfort. UTI during pregnancy can have serious sequelae. UTIs are one of the commonest reasons for preterm labour, infection of the ureters and kidneys, needing hospitalisation and intravenous antibiotics. UTIs if not treated effectively have a very high recurrence rate especially in pregnancy. Recurrent UTIs can cause ascending bacterial infection in the kidneys leading to severe pain and pyelonephritis, infection in the blood and even high blood pressure. What are the long-term impacts of a prolonged bladder infection in women? Elaborate Mehta: In many cases, UTI remains undiagnosed, and in other cases, the treatment process is not completed entirely. Although UTI can be simple to treat, it can affect the well-being and health of a person in the following ways: 1. UTI can damage the bladder (urine bag) and progress to other organs, including the kidneys. 2. When it affects the kidneys, it can cause severe problems, including Pyelonephritis, an inflammation caused by bacterial infection. Also, repeated kidney infections can lead to permanent damage to the organ. 3. Undiagnosed UTI can also lead to blood infection, causing Septicemia - a life-threatening condition that can even lead to septic shocks and requires immediate medical attention. Please list important measures to prevent the infection. Shaikh and Mehta suggest a few lifestyle and dietary changes, which can help women in preventing UTI: 1. Drink a lot of fluids, especially water, as it dilutes urine, which means when a person pees more frequently, it will most likely flush out the infection. 2. Do not hold urine in the bladder for a long time. 3. Use water or an intimate wipe to clean your intimate area from front to back after passing urine or motions. This will prevent the bacteria from anus (opening for stool) spreading near the urethra (urinary opening). These bacteria are the commonest cause of UTI. 4. Avoid using irritating skin care products like powders, creams, and douches. This may irritate the skin and urinary opening, which makes a person prone to getting UTI. 5. Urinate and wash before and after having sex. 6. Change the type of birth control method that a person is using, like a diaphragm, and unlubricated condoms, which can sometimes be a cause of UTI. 7. Dry thoroughly after washing and don’t wear damp undergarments. Frequently change sanitary napkins or tampons. Are there any readily available antibiotics that one can keep ready in an emergency? Mehta: Urine infections should not be treated with any random kind of antibiotics. The best way to treat a UTI is to consult a specialised doctor who will ask you about your symptoms (frequent, burning, and painful urination), diagnose the condition after the necessary tests and then start you on the correct medication. It is important to remember that random, uncontrolled, unauthorised use of antibiotics leads to resistance in the microbes and makes treatment more difficult. Also Read: A new technology aims to detect early-stage Alzheimer's disease: Report

28 November,2022 02:52 PM IST | Mumbai | Sarasvati T
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Five dietary switches you can adapt for a healthy lifestyle

'Healthy lifestyle' a common phrase that has come under much scrutiny over the last couple years, has some of us checking our calorie count with every meal intake, and most of us aiming to achieve it, but never being able to. Despite alarming facts that reveal the sorry state of the Indian population's heart health, and India accounting for approximately 60 per cent of the world's heart diseases, it becomes an important consideration. We know that hypertension, high cholesterol, diabetes, or obesity can impact our health negatively. These can be caused by our poor lifestyle choices. Our sedentary lifestyles have led to reduced levels of physical activity, coupled with the lack of moderation and imbalance in our food habits that include excess consumption of processed foods high in refined sugar, salt and high-in fat consisting of saturated and trans-fat. The key to minimising health risks is not as hard as you may think. Starting small and adopting simple dietary and lifestyle changes can help in maintaining overall heart health. Choose granola bars over Indian dessert We Indians have a sweet tooth and crave for something sweet with our meals, but most of the time we go overboard with the consumption of desserts which have excessive amount of sugar. Over consumption of sugar for long period of time accumulates as fat in the body causing weight gain. Even though sugar is part of our regular diet one needs to be mindful about the consumption pattern, portion sizes and should go for a snack which is more ideal. Granola bars are a quick snack for those who need a power boost but make sure you use low amounts of sugar. Homemade granola bars can be made at home with oats, berries, edible seeds and dry fruits that are high sources of fibre and protein. Soluble fibre helps to reduce LDL levels i.e., bad cholesterol and blood pressure which will keep your heart healthy. Swap fruit juices with whole fruits Consuming whole fruits in the morning helps in better absorption of vitamins from the fruits. However, people choose the convenient option and consume fruit juices. Natural and canned fruit juices are a concentrated sources of sugars without the benefit of fibre. Hence, it is advisable to include whole fruits as part of your breakfast, which have nutrients like fibre, vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients. Seasonal fruits can be a good way to include fruits in your breakfast every day. Choose blended oils over single seed oils Our day-to-day cooking requires oil in almost all our meals, therefore choosing the right oil is a simple change for overall health. Though single seed oils like ground nut, soybean, canola etc. do have health benefits, they are not enough to provide the right balance of fatty acids which are recommended in our diet. A healthier switch would be opting for multi-source oils, also known as blended oils. Blended oils with antioxidants have multiple benefits like providing nutrition from fats and improving immunity. It is prepared by combining two or more oils into one to obtain benefits of two oils in one. They are scientifically blended to provide good balance of MUFAs and PUFAs that help manage cholesterol. Choosing a blended oil like Saffola Gold Blended Oil as part of your everyday diet can help in keeping your heart healthy. It has natural antioxidants that help build immunity and gives you benefits of oryzanol that helps lower your cholesterol. Additionally, it has LOSORB technology which helps in absorbing lower quantities of oil during frying compared to other cooking oils. The oil is a blend of Rice Bran Oil which is rich in MUFA and Sunflower Oil which is rich in PUFA; and hence, gives you a good balance of MUFA and PUFA, which is beneficial for your heart health. Lower sodium and saturated fat rich snack foods The American Heart Association and Indian Council of Medical Research recommend ideal consumption of sodium to be no more than 2000 mg a day. Processed foods like chips, crackers or white bread as an evening snack has become a norm amongst adults these days and these foods are usually high in sodium and saturated fat. It is important to check nutritional labels before purchasing processed foods to assess the amount of sodium and saturated fat you are consuming. You can also opt for a healthy switch and consume foods like fruits, sprouts, oats, yogurt or millet based foods for snacks. Swap fast food with healthy alternatives Working professionals living sedentary lifestyles tend to depend on fast food to satisfy their hunger pangs. Fast food could have excess amounts of saturated fats, refined sugar and sodium, increasing the possibility of obesity, diabetes, hypertension and cholesterol imbalance. To counter this, a simple habit of eating healthy alternatives like hummus wrap, savoury oatmeal, and millet dosas can be relished. Chickpeas, oats, millet flour and veggies have great source of plant-based protein and fiber which improves your good gut bacteria and have low glycemic Index that helps to control blood sugar levels. Leafy vegetables like spinach, cabbage, fenugreek leaves, kale and collard greens are high in fibre, vitamins and minerals that promote overall health and heart health. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle can seem overwhelming, especially with all the information out there. However, breaking down your health goals and making simple, easy changes to your everyday habits can help achieve a healthy lifestyle. Also Read: Expectations change in relationships with age: Study This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

26 November,2022 07:27 PM IST | New Delhi | IANS
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Most people suffering from long Covid are facing social stigma, discrimination

The last two years of the Covid-19 pandemic has had lasting effects on people not only physically but also mentally and that can be seen in many different ways. A new study has now found that majority of people living with long Covid are experiencing some form of social stigma directly related to their condition. Published in the journal PLOS ONE, the study was conducted by researchers at the University of Southampton and Brighton and Sussex Medical School and co-designed by people living with long Covid (from the charity Long Covid Support) in the UK. An estimated 2.3 million people are living with long Covid in the UK, according to the Office for National Statistics data, and numbers are not decreasing due to limited treatment options and continued high Covid infection rates. "There have been countless anecdotal reports of the stigma, dismissal and discrimination faced by people living with long Covid. We were shocked to see just how prevalent it is, but the findings also empower us to do something about it," said Dr Marija Pantelic, lecturer in public health at Brighton and Sussex Medical School. In the study, nearly two thirds (63 per cent) of people reported experiences of stigma such as being treated with less respect or people they care about stopping contact with them due to their health condition. About 91 per cent expected to experience stigma and discrimination, for example they thought many people did not consider long Covid to be a real illness or they anticipated judgment. Eighty-six per cent of respondents felt a profound sense of shame related to having long Covid - they were embarrassed of their illness and felt "very different" from people without long Covid. In the study, 61 per cent of people said they were very careful who they tell about their condition, and about one third (34 per cent) of respondents regretted having told people about it. Overall, the prevalence of experiencing stigma was higher in those who reported having a clinical diagnosis of long Covid compared to those without or who were unsure. "We were surprised to find that people with a clinical diagnosis of Long Covid were more likely to report stigma than people without a formal diagnosis. More research is needed to unpack the potential mechanisms of how and where this stigma is manifested, and who is most likely to stigmatise and be stigmatised," said Nisreen Alwan, Professor of Public Health at the University of Southampton. Also Read: Five bacteria were responsible for at least 6.8 lakh deaths in India in 2019: Lancet study This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

25 November,2022 06:23 PM IST | London | IANS
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Five bacteria were responsible for at least 6.8 lakh deaths in India in 2019

A new Lancet study has revealed that infections remain a leading cause of death globally and in India with as many as five bacteria were responsible for at least 6.8 lakh deaths in 2019. The five deadly bacteria in India are led by E.coli, along with S. pneumoniae, K. pneumoniae, S. aureus and A. baumanii. E. Coli alone claimed at least 1.6 lakh lives in India in 2019. Globally, there were 77 lakh deaths associated with the 33 bacterial pathogens (both resistant and susceptible to antimicrobials) across the 11 infectious syndromes. "The 33 bacterial pathogens that we investigated in this study are a substantial source of health loss globally, with considerable variation in their distribution across infectious syndromes and locations," said the Lancet study. "Hence, they should be considered an urgent priority for intervention within the global health community. Strategies to address the burden of bacterial infections include infection prevention, optimised use of antibiotics, improved capacity for microbiological analysis, vaccine development, and improved and more pervasive use of available vaccines," the researchers noted. The researchers estimated deaths associated with 33 bacterial genera or species across 11 infectious syndromes in 2019 using methods from the Global Burden of Diseases, Injuries, and Risk Factors Study (GBD) 2019, in addition to a subset of the input data described in the Global Burden of Antimicrobial Resistance 2019 study. This study included 343 million individual records or isolates covering 11,361 study-location-years. From an estimated 13.7 million infection-related deaths in 2019, there were 7.7 million deaths associated with the 33 bacterial pathogens (both resistant and susceptible to antimicrobials) across the 11 infectious syndromes estimated in this study. Five leading pathogens -- Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Klebsiella pneumoniae, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa -- were responsible for 54.9 per cent of deaths among the investigated bacteria. "The age-standardised mortality rate associated with these bacterial pathogens was highest in the sub-Saharan Africa super-region, with 230 deaths per 100a邈 population," said the study. S aureus was the leading bacterial cause of death in 135 countries and was also associated with the most deaths in individuals older than 15 years, globally. Among children younger than 5 years, S pneumoniae was the pathogen associated with the most deaths. "In 2019, more than 6 million deaths occurred as a result of three bacterial infectious syndromes, with lower respiratory infections and bloodstream infections each causing more than 2 million deaths and peritoneal and intra-abdominal infections causing more than 1 million deaths," the study noted. This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

23 November,2022 10:42 PM IST | New Delhi | IANS
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High amount of good cholesterol levels doesn't guarantee low heart disease risk

As more and more people try to achieve a healthy body by maintaining high levels of good cholesterol in their diet, new research has revealed that high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol may not be as effective in "uniformly predicting cardiovascular disease risk" for adults belonging to all races and ethnic backgrounds. A National Institutes of Health (NIH)-supported, published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, found that while low levels of HDL cholesterol predicted an increased risk of heart attacks or related deaths for white adults - a long-accepted association, but the same was not true for Black adults. Additionally, higher HDL cholesterol levels were not associated with reduced cardiovascular disease risk for either group. "The goal was to understand this long-established link that labels HDL as the beneficial cholesterol, and if that's true for all ethnicities," said Nathalie Pamir, associate professor of medicine within the Knight Cardiovascular Institute at Oregon Health & Science University, Portland. "It's been well accepted that low HDL cholesterol levels are detrimental, regardless of race. Our research tested those assumptions," Pamir added. To reach this conclusion, Pamir and her colleagues reviewed data from 23,901 adults who participated in the Reasons for Geographic and Racial Differences in Stroke Study (REGARDS). For the current study, researchers were able to look at how cholesterol levels from black and white middle-aged adults without heart disease who lived throughout the country overlapped with future cardiovascular events. The study was the first to find that lower HDL cholesterol levels only predicted increased cardiovascular disease risk for white adults. It also expands on findings from other studies showing that high HDL cholesterol levels are not always associated with reduced cardiovascular events. "What I hope this type of research establishes is the need to revisit the risk-predicting algorithm for cardiovascular disease," Pamir said. "It could mean that in the future we don't get a pat on the back from our doctors for having higher HDL cholesterol levels." As researchers study HDL cholesterol's role in supporting heart health, they are exploring different theories. One is quality over quantity. That is, instead of having more HDL, the quality of HDL's function - in picking up and transporting excess cholesterol from the body - may be more important for supporting cardiovascular health. "HDL cholesterol has long been an enigmatic risk factor for cardiovascular disease," said Sean Coady, a deputy branch chief of epidemiology within the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)'s Division of Cardiovascular Sciences. The findings suggest that a deeper dive into the epidemiology of lipid metabolism is warranted, especially in terms of how race may modify or mediate these relationships. "When it comes to risk factors for heart disease, they cannot be limited to one race or ethnicity," said Pamir. "They need to apply to everyone."Also Read: Apple Watch may help detect silent heart disease: Study This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

23 November,2022 10:36 PM IST | New Delhi | IANS
November is celebrated as Men’s Health Awareness Month. Image for representational purpose only. Photo Courtesy: istock

Explainer: Understanding testicular cancer and why men should get tested early

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In the recent past, when one talks about men’s health, there has been an increasing focus on mental health, which has come to the fore because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Every November there is also an attempt to shed more light on men's health issues. Known as Men’s Health Awareness Month globally, the observance coincides with International Men’s Day which was celebrated on November 19. Incidentally, the month of November focuses on men’s health in more ways than one as worldwide movements such as ‘Movember’ are also underway. It broadly focuses on raising awareness about prostate cancer, testicular cancer, mental health and suicide prevention among men. After focussing on prostate cancer and mental health as a part of the series on men’s health this month, this week throws light on testicular cancer. A type of cancer that experts say is necessary to check even though it has a low incidence in India, because early treatment will lead to complete cure of the cancer. Mid-day Online spoke to Dr Prasad Kasbekar, consultant surgical oncologist, Masina Hospital, and Dr Santoshi Janardan Nagaonkar, director, urological oncology, Sir HN Reliance Foundation Hospital to understand more about the type of cancer affecting men. Kasbekar and Nagaonkar not only dwell on the causes and effects but also the need for men to not feel shy and instead conduct self-examinations to help detect and treat the cancer early. What is testicular cancer?Kasbekar: Every male has two reproductive organs located in the groin region of the body in a special sac known as the scrotum; these are your testes, from which the sperms are produced for male reproduction. Abnormal development of the cells in this area can lead to cancer, and that is what we call testicular cancer. Testicular cancers are classified into three types: the first is a seminomatous germ cell tumour type, the second is a non-seminomatous germ cell tumour type, and the third is lymphoma. Who is prone to suffering from testicular cancer? Is it seen more in a particular age group?Kasbekar: Seminomatous and non-seminomatous are seen in younger age groups. While seminomatous is approximately seen in the 30 to 40 years age bracket, non-seminomatous is even younger in the 20 to 30 years age bracket. Testicular lymphomas are seen more in advanced stages, and above 50 years of age. Nagaonkar: One of the predisposing factors for developing testicular cancer is undescended testes. Male children who are born with hidden testes (one or both) which are not palpable in the scrotum at the time of birth have an increased risk of developing testes cancer. This cancer also has family predisposition, mainly kids born to father or brother who suffered with testicular cancer carry higher risk. Testicular cancer is one of the cancers with the highest cure rate, if diagnosed in an early stage. Younger men in the age range of 18-44 years often get diagnosed with this cancer. What are the causes of testicular cancer?Kasbekar: People who have an abnormal descent of testes, which is known as cryptorchidism, or have a history of trauma to the testes, or in general have radiation exposure to the testes, or have a known genetic disorder such as Down Syndrome, or any genetic problem, are more at risk for testicular cancer. What are the effects of testicular cancer?Kasbekar: Usually testicular cancer presents as a reduced or loss of sensation in the testes or as a painless lump or mass in the testes that a man may feel on simple examination. This should always be taken seriously because cancers of the testes, if treated effectively, can have a very good result and long survival. Treatment for these cancers typically begins with the removal of the testes, which is accomplished through a high inguinal orchiectomy surgery. A biopsy of the testes directly by passing a needle is completely contradicted, as it has been shown to increase spread and discomfort due to the testes. What are the symptoms one should look for in testicular cancer?Kasbekar: Usually the symptoms one looks for in testicular cancer are a painless enlargement of one testicle. This is usually insidious on presentation, and during routine examination, a person finds some difference in his testes. Experiencing back pain or even abdominal pain sometimes are the other symptoms. Nagaonkar: Like most other cancers, in early stages this cancer will cause no symptoms. One can feel an abnormal painless lump or heaviness in their scrotum. In advanced cancers, the person can experience weight loss, loss of appetite, bone pain, breathing difficulties or even swelling in the abdomen or neck regions. Standard treatment for this cancer is removal of the affected testes. In slightly advanced cases, chemotherapy or radiation therapy may have to be used. What are the misconceptions about testicular cancer?Nagaonkar: There are some misconceptions about testicular cancer. Even though the cancer is common in the younger population, it also affects older men. Cancer cells do not get transmitted to your sexual partner and neither is it linked to Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STD’s). Also, any trivial trauma to the scrotal region will not lead to cancer. Testicular cancer will not cause infertility (low sperm count), but it has been observed that more than 50 per cent men diagnosed with testis cancer coincidentally will have poor sperm count. However, the therapeutic treatment (surgery/chemotherapy/radiation therapy) of testicular cancer could be one of the causes of male infertility. Therefore, your treating doctor will recommend doing sperm banking (preservation) before initiating any treatment. What is the severity of testicular cancer in men?Kasbekar: Though not as common as other cancers such as breast or mouth cancer, testicular cancer is also a cancer of which people should be aware because if treated early, people can have very good results and live long lives. Avoidance and late treatment generally lead to complications such as the spread of the disease, which later leads to a lot of stress as well as a lot of surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, and other procedures. Hence, early detection can reduce the morbidity of treatment as well as improve the patient's overall survival. What is the frequency in which men should get themselves checked?Kasbekar: Since early treatment of testicular cancer can have very good results, testicular self-examination is very important. Go to the doctor, get yourself checked once again, understand how you should examine your testes, and do it once every 3 to 4 months after the age of 20. That means you have to look for the size, shape, consistency, and feel when you do the examination. Look for any change in the sensations. Why is it important to raise awareness about testicular cancer? Is it among the top cancers men should be weary of?Nagaonkar: Due to its nature, most men don’t like to talk about this cancer and they are also shy in presenting them to a doctor. Therefore, it is crucial to raise awareness about this cancer. A simple ‘Self-Examination Test (SET)’ on a periodical basis can lead to an early diagnosis and complete cure of the cancer. A systematic scrotal examination to palpate individual testis to feel for any lumps is very easy and can be done while having a shower when the muscles are relaxed and one has complete privacy. In case of any doubt, one should not hesitate to seek an opinion from a urologist. The urologist will perform a simple examination and based on his/her findings, will initiate any further tests. Even the subsequent tests are simple which may include an ultrasound examination, X-ray and some blood tests. The incidence of testicular cancer is 1 in 250 male children and cannot be ignorantly low. There have been instances where a few international sports personalities have overcome this cancer in recent years. It is imperative that we buckle ourselves up and start performing SET (Self-Examination Test) and get over with this under-publicised but completely treatable demon.  Also read: Bladder health awareness month: Experts advise women not to silently suffer urinary leakages

22 November,2022 10:56 AM IST | Mumbai | Nascimento Pinto
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Apple Watch may help detect silent heart disease: Study

A new study focusing on identifying heart abnormalities like left ventricular dysfunction has taken a look at the ECG capabilities of the Apple Watch. Left Ventricular dysfunction of the heart is usually followed by congestive heart failure that can lead to a multitude of cardiac disorders. The Mayo Clinic study explains that cardiac dysfunction often goes undiagnosed due to its asymptomatic nature, meaning people with it are unaware of it, reports 9 to 5 Mac. It would be a major breakthrough if something like the Apple Watch could detect it passively or help diagnose it, the report added. The study included 2,454 patients from the US and 11 other countries. From August 2021 to February 2022, these participants sent over 1,25,000 ECGs via their Apple Watch. These results were then "scrubbed and processed via a proprietary AI algorithm developed by the researchers", according to the report. By using the mean prediction within a 30-day window or the closest ECG relative to the echocardiogram that determined the EF, the AI algorithm detected patients with a low EF (ejection fraction) with an area under the curve of 0.885 (95 per cent confidence interval 0.823-0.946) and 0.881 (0.815-0.947), said the report. The findings showed that "consumer-watch ECGs acquired in nonclinical environments can identify patients with cardiac dysfunction". The study also infers that "the potential of smartwatches to assist with conducting remote digital health studies is just in the beginning phases". Also Read: Bladder health awareness month: Experts advise women not to silently suffer urinary leakages This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

21 November,2022 05:09 PM IST | San Francisco | IANS
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Less discussed urinary leakages affect women's bladder health: Experts

The month of November is being celebrated as the Bladder health awareness month in India to create awareness on bladder health. Experts on this occasion call on women not to suffer urinary leakages silently, which could lead to severe complications. Dr Rubina Shanawaz, Consultant Gynecologist, Fortis Hospital, stated that one in four women in India above the age of 35 face some kind of urinary leakage. The common misconception is that it is a part of having given birth to children and due to the ageing process. Also, it is a fact that women are embarrassed to bring it up to their families and seek treatment options for the same, she said. In Bangalore, the increased incidence of chronic cough owing to allergies leads to more women suffering from urinary leakage on coughing. Another factor is the increased body mass index owing to a sedentary lifestyle which puts pressure on the urinary bladder leading to embarrassing leaks, Dr Rubina explained. Women suffering from diabetes present with constant visits to the restroom with dribbling of urine which is due to the nerve supply to the bladder being affected by high blood sugar values, she noted. "Most women who approach us are used to managing the issue with sanitary napkins or diapers. They also broadly restrict their lifestyle and avoid getting out of the house to prevent embarrassing urinary leaks and the odour associated. Long-term suffering in silence without treatment can lead to vulval skin excoriation, urinary tract infections, and back pressure effects on the kidney, especially in diabetics," she stated. "Utmost importance needs to be given to eliciting the appropriate history from the patient to arrive at the exact issue contributing to the lack of control of the urinary bladder. The need of the hour is increased awareness among women and their caregivers on the effects of urinary leaks and the treatment options available for the same," Dr Rubina said. Dr P. Vamsi Krishna, HOD and Senior Consultant, Department of Urology, CARE Hospitals, Banjara Hills, Hyderabad stated that "Regardless of the gender, around 20-25 per cent of people have issues with bladder health in India." While the need to treat urological infections is very high, patients do not find the right help or guidance for the treatment. Women are hesitant to seek medical care due to the social stigma and taboo that is persistent in our country. There is huge awareness required regarding urinary infections and their urgent treatment, he explained. Dr P. Vamsi Krishna further explained that one in four women have urinary infections, with a lifetime risk of it. A female's urinary tract is only 3-4 cm wide and of very short length. After sexual intercourse, or when the woman is in her reproductive age, she is highly prone to these infections due to the short urethra. Once the woman enters her menopausal phase, due to the physical dryness, replaced additional poor hormonal activity, and estrogen deficiency in the vaginal area, the body immunity is naturally immunity lowered and increases the risk of infection due to aging, he stated. Dr P. Vamsi Krishna stated, there is also an increase in urinary incontinence in India, and the ratio is higher in women due to the shorter length of their urinary tract. There are two types of incontinence - stress urinary incontinence which is caused due to laxity in the urethra and, urgency incontinence which is due to overactive or irritable bladder and does not let you control your urine, he stated. When the tissues around the urethra become loose or lax a person won't be able to hold their urine. Diabetes is one more catalyst for an overall infection of the body which causes an irritable bladder, he said. Dr P. Vamsi Krishna says that for further treatment and prevention, one should take an adequate course of antibiotics with a minimum of 5-7 days as prescribed by the doctor. Many times, as the antibiotic course is inadequate, the patients face residual and persistent infection and require a prolonged antibiotic course. Females should empty their bladder after physical intercourse, he stated. Elderly ladies should check for diabetes. The patients with stress continency are advised kegel exercises. One should accordingly address these issues further after checking for these underlined issues, as prescribed by your doctor, he said. Dr Sreeharsha Harinatha, Consultant Urology, Uro-oncology, Andrology, Transplant and Robotic Surgery, Fortis Hospital, Bannerghatta Road, Bangalore stated that 25 to 45 per cent of adult women report occasional leakage. Urinary leakages are more common in women than in men. Awareness about urinary leakage is a must as women are hesitant to talk about their leak condition. 80 per cent of those affected with urinary leakage can be improved or cured. There are various factors that can cause urinary leak like obesity, childbirth, high impact exercise, caffeine or alcohol consumption and co-morbidities such as diabetes, urinary tract infection and heart diseases, as per Dr Sreeharsha Harinatha. It is vital that one understands the types of urinary incontinence - bladder leaks during exercise, coughing, sneezing, laughing which puts a pressure or stress on the bladder, sudden urge to pass urine, having an overactive bladder. However, leakage can be prevented by following certain measures like limiting caffeine intake, stop smoking, weight loss, physical therapy and biofeedback, he explains. For those in whom lifestyle modifications do not provide adequate relief, they would require further evaluation with tests such as urine analysis, ultrasound pelvis and Urodynamic study, he said. Treatment is tailored to individual patient needs and expectations based on symptoms and aforementioned test results, Dr Harinatha stated. Also Read: Of style and warmth: Here’s how to style bodycon clothes during winter This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever

21 November,2022 12:20 PM IST | Mumbai | IANS
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A new technology aims to detect early-stage Alzheimer's disease: Report

Dealing with Alzheimer's disease is difficult and scientists are constantly working different ways to carry out treatment. Now, according to a report, a team of researchers is developing a "dual-mode brain-sensing device" that detects the disease quickly and effectively.  According to UTA (University of Texas at Arlington), Hanli Liu, a bioengineering professor, will be the principal investigator of the project "Digital biomarkers for Alzheimer's Disease with compact dual-mode brain sensing". She says "what we are doing in this project is developing a quick and comfortable method to measure metabolic, hemodynamic and electrophysiological (MHE) activities in the human brain". "The proposed development enables us to identify digital neurophysiological biomarkers. After we cross-validate them, they can be used for accurate detection of Alzheimer's in each patient as well as for screening for the early phase of AD," she added. This device records data from near-infrared (NIR) spectroscopy, as well as from dry/wireless electroencephalograms (EEG), according to the report. In spectroscopy, NIR light is absorbed and emitted by the human cortex, while in electroencephalography, electrical activity in the brain reflects dynamic neural activity. This multifunctional device will be able to measure a variety of brain-health parameters, such as cerebral metabolism, cerebral blood volume, cerebral oxygenation, brain oscillation powers and functional connectivity and neurovascular coupling, the report added. The Alzheimer's Association estimates that 50 million people worldwide, including more than 6 million Americans, suffer from Alzheimer's disease and other types of dementia. Among all types of dementia, AD kills more people than breast cancer and prostate cancer combined. AD and other types of dementia cost $355 billion in 2021, a figure that is expected to rise to more than $1 trillion by 2050, said the report.Also Read: What is Movember and why you need to know about prostate cancer affecting men This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever.

20 November,2022 04:03 PM IST | San Francisco | IANS
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Consuming excess salt may lead to increase in stress levels: Study

The benefits of consuming salt are known but excess of it can also cause problems. A new study has now revealed that a diet containing lots of salt can contribute to increased levels of stress. According to the study published in Cardiovascular Research, scientists found in studies of mice that a high-salt diet increased the levels of a stress hormone by 75 per cent. "We are what we eat and understanding how high-salt food changes our mental health is an important step to improving well-being," said Matthew Bailey, Professor of Renal Physiology at the University of Edinburgh's Centre for Cardiovascular Science. "We know that eating too much salt damages our heart, blood vessels, and kidneys. This study now tells us that high salt in our food also changes the way our brain handles stress," he added. The recommended daily salt intake for adults is less than six grams, but most people eat about nine grams, according to the study. This can lead to higher blood pressure, which increases the risks of heart attacks, strokes, and vascular dementia. Despite the well-established effects on the heart and circulatory system, little was known about how a high-salt diet affects a person's behaviour, the study added. In order to study this, experts from the University of Edinburgh used mice, who normally eat a low-salt diet, and high-salt food to resemble the typical human diet. The researchers found that not only did resting stress hormone levels increase, but the mice's hormone response to environmental stress was double that of mice that had a normal diet, said the study. Experts say further studies are already in progress to determine if high salt intake leads to anxiety and aggression.Also Read: Parents have a key role in protecting children from drug abuse: Experts This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever.

20 November,2022 03:37 PM IST | San Francisco | IANS
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