When Saracens rugby player Jade Knight ran her first 5km after the birth of her son, she was plagued by urinary incontinence. Pregnancy and birth had caused a weak pelvic floor – the group of muscles that span the bottom of the pelvis – leading to stress incontinence, a condition affecting around a third of mothers.

Embarrassed, Knight religiously wore black leggings when she returned to training out of fear she would leak in front of her team-mates. “Unless I speak about it I don’t think anyone else is going to,” she says. Even as a qualified midwife, she was astounded at the toll pregnancy had taken on her body.

With a severe lack of evidence and information on how exercise impacts post-partum sportswomen,

How old are Kegel weights now?

That is, this is hardly an unknown, is it?

The lack of self awareness is astonishing

Many liberals and a growing number of Democratic presidential candidates have embraced a bold idea for reforming America’s broken healthcare system. The idea most in vogue—and the most debated—throughout the 2020 election has been to abolish private insurance in favor of a government-run national system, otherwise known as “Medicare for All.” Advocates of “single-payer” generally blame rapacious insurers as the principal villains of the current system, responsible for sky-high premiums and out-of-pocket expenses. Replacing for-profit insurance companies with a government program, the logic goes, would bring lower costs and coverage to everyone

But this singular focus on insurers means that the presidential hopefuls are neglecting an even bigger problem with far-reaching consequences for millions of Americans: the dominance of hospital monopolies in a growing number of health care markets nationwide.

Monopolies, in general, mean bad news for consumers. Health care is no exception.

That’s why there should be a single, monopoly, health care system like Medicare for all, right?

Competition, not consolidation, is better for patients.

Err, yes?

Centralised bureaucracies work so well, don’t they?

“Little progress” has been made improving patient safety in the NHS over the past 20 years, the top health service watchdog has said.

Serious accidents such as surgery on the wrong part of the body remain commonplace due to an “insidious” culture of defensiveness and blame, the Chief Inspector of Hospitals at the Care Quality Commission (CQC) said.

Professor Ted Baker yesterday revealed he receives between 500 and 600 reports of “never events” a year, incidents that are wholly preventable whatever the circumstances.

This includes an occasion where surgeons operated on the wrong eye of a patient.

He told a safety conference at The King’s Fund that hospital managers routinely hide evidence from the CQC, because they regard the organisation as out to blame them.

Not actually an issue of time, money or budgets…..

Midwives failing to check babies’ heart rates during labour is the biggest cause of birth blunders in NHS, an investigation has found.

An analysis of “devastating” cases which ended in brain injury found that seven in ten involved a failure to properly monitor the foetus.

And in almost two thirds of such births, at least two errors were made, with repeated missed chances to prevent death and avoidable injuries.

The research, which examined 96 births, follows official figures which show that almost £5bn of negligence claims were lodged against the NHS in 2018/19.

Half of this – almost £2.5bn – involved claims relating to alleged blunders in maternity.

The investigation also calls for urgent changes to ensure babies were properly monitored during labour.

Incompetence in a state organisation though…..

Calling BiG – Isn’t this like Fen Fen?

A landmark trial over one of France’s biggest healthcare scandals will begin on Monday after a weight-loss pill was believed to have killed up to 2,000 people and left many more injured for life.

The trial for manslaughter and deceit will attempt to lift the lid on France’s massive pharmaceuticals industry.

Servier, one of France’s biggest and most powerful privately-owned laboratories, is accused of covering up the killer side-effects of a widely prescribed drug called Mediator. The French state drug regulator is accused of lenience and not acting to prevent patient deaths and injuries.

There’s certainly some commonality. Weight loss drug that causes cardiovascular problems. Would be interesting to know whether it’s actually the same drug, or a slight derivative?

Let’s just rewrite this story

Hundreds of children with cancer being denied potentially lifesaving drugs

Where the Hell’s Mengele when you need him? For we’ve got to start doing medical experiments on sick kids.

That being what the actual problem is. We don’t test drugs on kids. Therefore they either not approved or we’re not sure they will work on kids. Thus they don’t get them.

The solution is to test drugs on kids.

Well, no, not really

Screening men for breast cancer may be even more effective than for women


Screening men for breast cancer may be even more effective than for women after testing picked up nearly four times the rate of tumours.

Not what’s being said:

Breast cancer in men is rare, with around 1.5 cases for every 100,000 men in Britain, equating to 390 men diagnosed each year compared to 54,800 cases in women.

But around one in 1000 men carry gene mutations that put them at greater risk.

Now a study has shown that when 1,869 high risk men were screened over 12 years, cancer was detected in 18 of every 1,000 exams, compared to five in 1,000 for women of both high and average risk.

Selective screening of men appears more effective than unselective screening of women.

Something that seems fair and reasonable when we think about it.

Not all that helpful

Scientists can predict risk of heart attack with 90 per cent accuracy

You have a 50% chance of a heart attack and I am 90% accurate in that prediction”.

The new technology can detect dangerous build-up of fat and scarring around the organ.

It allows medics to predict the likelihood of a heart attack over the next nine years with up to 90 per cent accuracy.

That’s more interesting than the piffle the Telegraph’s writers manage.

Ooooh, this is good!

Record demand for help from NHS gender identity clinics has seen waiting times reach more than two years , an investigation has found.

Don’t we make them wait three years before reaching for the scalpel anyway? So, they’re getting 2/3 of the work done in advance!

Umm, why?

A casting call seeking a thin young girl with “very good teeth” to star in a Milka chocolate Christmas TV advert has been criticised by health campaigners.

The request for child actors to play the role of “Mia” asked for “no red hair” and for the girl to be no older than 12 so she is “childlike”.

It insisted “no overweight children as this is advertising chocolate”.

The advert was published on Spotlight, a talent agency which helps performers find employment, and later on Twitter.

A spokesman for Action on Sugar, a health campaign group, said it was “sure the Advertising Standards Authority would not stand for this”.

Why will the ASA not stand for this?

They’re casting for an actress, the looks of the actress are relevant. And?

Baron Cohen is right, again

Professor Simon Baron-Cohen, Director of the Autism Research Centre at Cambridge, who led the study: “We are interested in understanding autism, not preventing it.

“This new finding supports the idea that increased prenatal sex steroid hormones are one of the potential causes for the condition.

“Genetics is well established as another, and these hormones likely interact with genetic factors to affect the developing foetal brain.”

Surge of hormones in the womb he’s been musing on this as the (or a, perhaps the trigger) cause for at last a decade and a half now.

This doesn’t say quite what they say it says

People with the worst genetic risk of dementia can reduce their chances of developing the disease by a third through exercise and healthy eating, new research finds.

The first study to analyse the combined effect of genetic and lifestyle factors established that the impact of living healthily was enough to substantially lessen the danger from bad genes.

Regular moderate exercise, quitting smoking, drinking sensibly, plus eating lots of fish and vegetables, was linked to roughly the same reduction in the chance of dementia, regardless of genetic risk, the research found.

OK, so there’s dementia caused by bad diet, that caused by genes. That caused by bad diet has risk of reduced by not having a bad diet.

Fair enough.

This means the benefit of adopting a healthy lifestyle is likely to be highest for those with the worst genes.


The Obesity Debate

I know from painful experience how poisonous the debate around obesity is
Layla Moran
Yes, we must tackle obesity: but let’s do it without the kind of heartless reporting and hurtful language that held me back

Obesity is killing us all. We must radically change society to rid ourselves of this evil.

But we must say anything about fatties.

Not really going to work out well is it? Given that social approbation and dis- is the most powerful force in changing human behaviour…..

Wonder of the World It Is

A relative of Nye Bevan, the founder of the NHS, died after doctors failed to tell him he had lung cancer for 15 months, an inquest heard.

Roderick Bevan, who died aged 66 in May 2018 after NHS doctors diagnosed his condition, would have survived but for the failure of two sets of doctors..

A coroner ruled that the errors amounted to “neglect”.

No doubt lessons will be learnt.

Logic honey, logic

Americans love a quick health fix in pill form: something to protect against illness, with minimal effort. For years, one of the go-to supplements has been vitamin D, thought to do everything from preventing cancer to strengthening bones.

Some bad news: Yet another big study adds to the pile of evidence that it’s useless for most people.

Hmm, OK.

But in most people with no symptoms of deficiency,

So, people who are not deficient in a vitamin do not benefit from having the non-existent deficiency removed.

Jeez, next they’ll be telling us that people without breast cancer don’t need their tits lopped off….

But what about the 10%?

One of our readers here, dearieme, has told of an anaesthetic not taking hold, or wearing off perhaps, during surgery. Rather painful thing to happen he says.

Which leads to a wondering about this:

Hypnosis works better than strong anaesthetic and could soon become the norm for elderly people undergoing arthritis operations following a landmark trial.

Medics have hailed the results of a new study where anaesthetic powerful enough to put patients to sleep was successfully replaced with a virtual reality experience.

Participants in need of shoulder, hand or knee operations were given headsets and taken on a virtual submarine tour, with a soothing female voice pointing out various fish and other underwater features.

They had each been given a local anaesthetic, but the virtual reality hypnosis distraction (VRHD) was used to replace the intravenous sedation such patients would normally have got.

This can put people to sleep, but does not induce the full controlled coma of a general anaesthetic.

Doctors at the CUB Erasmus Hospital in Brussels found that the VRHD successfully replaced intravenous sedation in three quarters of patients who had the submarine sedation during the operation.

Meanwhile 90 per cent of those who had VRHD for ten minutes before as well as during the operation did not require intravenous sedation.

Yes, but what about the 10% where it doesn’t work? How far into causing pain does the operation go before it’s possible to work out who that 10% are?

A case of overclaiming perhaps?

Freeze-dried bacteria from the guts of healthy people could be the key to tackling asthma, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease and even cancer, experts believe.

British scientists have isolated several strains of friendly bugs which appear to have significant effects on the immune system, and hope they could replace harsh chemotherapy drugs or steroids.

The first trials have now begun to see if introducing just a single species of bacteria in pill form could benefit a huge range of diseases.

The human gut contains trillions of bacteria – known collectively as the microbiome, which has evolved with us over millions of years. But the overuse of antibiotics and hyper-cleanliness in everyday life can kill off helpful bugs, contributing to the rise of disease.

A recent study by University College London (UCL) found that a single course of antibiotics can alter the microbiome for at least a year, and poor gut health is now linked to the development of Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Crohn’s disease, asthma, allergies, inflammatory bowel disorder (IBS), diabetes, multiple sclerosis, autism, cancer, and even HIV.

Duncan Peyton, founder and CEO of British company 4D pharma, which is launching the first trials into a new era of biotherapeutics, believes that replacing the missing bacteria could restore good health.

Perfectly willing to believe some of that. Asthma perhaps, it being an allergic reaction I think? Allergies. But HIV? Autism? Isn’t that last getting a little close to Wakefield’s silliness?

People with actual knowledge here are invited to inform the rest of us.