Health & Lifestyle

HEALTH NOTES: Mum’s vitamin mix cuts risk of child obesity

Expectant mums could halve the risk of their children becoming obese by taking a mixture of common vitamins.

A study found the children of mums who took a powdered drink containing probiotics, vitamins B2, B6, B12 and D were half as likely to be obese by the age of two than those whose mothers took a standard pregnancy supplement.

The study’s co-author, Associate Professor Shiao Yng Chan, from the National University of Singapore, says: ‘These early events can influence how the child reacts to an unhealthy lifestyle.’

A study found the children of mums who took a powdered drink containing probiotics, vitamins B2, B6, B12 and D were half as likely to be obese by the age of two (stock image) 

 Gadget that spots Parkinson’s decline 

Gadgets that can track Parkinson’s symptoms in real time are now available on the NHS.

The movement sensors, usually worn on the wrist, can measure things such as stiffness and involuntary tremors – both common symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.

The debilitating disease affects about 153,000 people in the UK. There is currently no cure, although it can be treated with physiotherapy and levodopa – a medicine that helps with co-ordination.

The device sends a patient’s data back to their doctor, helping them see if symptoms are getting worse and, if necessary, suggest a different treatment.

Tracking movement data over time rather than at medical reviews, which can take place just once a year, is expected to help doctors make better choices about patients’ care.

3D printers are being used to create lifesize models of patients’ livers to help surgeons in Southampton tackle a deadly bile duct cancer that is notoriously difficult to treat.

Bile ducts are small tubes that connect the liver to the gall bladder and small intestine. Cancer in this area of the body, called hilar cholangiocarcinoma, affects just 1-2 people per 100,000 per year in the UK, but the hard-to-reach location makes it difficult for surgeons to remove tumours. 

So doctors have been using information from scans to create 3D models that let them see the tumour before surgery so they can decide whether or not it is safe to operate.

Bile ducts are small tubes that connect the liver to the gall bladder and small intestine (stock image)

Bile ducts are small tubes that connect the liver to the gall bladder and small intestine (stock image) 

The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has approved a new medicine, Omjjara, to treat the symptoms of anaemia in people with a rare blood cancer.

Four in ten people with myelofibrosis – a type of bone marrow cancer – have moderate to severe anaemia, where lack of iron affects the level of red blood cells, causing fatigue and shortness of breath.

Research shows that 25 per cent of patients on Omjjara, saw their symptoms reduce by half. The tablet work by blocking a protein that keeps iron in the liver and stops it from being absorbed through food.


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