Body

Over 30 years ago, Marsha and Allen Barnett lost their sons to a puzzling childhood disease that relentlessly attacked their nervous systems and sapped their energy. After five-year-old Chuckie died suddenly in 1981, doctors provided a name for the disease: Leigh syndrome. Leigh syndrome is a complex disorder typically caused by dysfunctional mitochondria, the tiny batteries inside all cells that generate our energy.

Although the absolute risk increase is small, the findings expand on current knowledge and quantify the risk of serious adverse events potentially linked to this group of drugs, say the researchers.

SGLT2 inhibitors are increasingly popular drugs for the treatment of type 2 diabetes. They lower blood glucose levels by increasing glucose loss through the kidneys, but concerns have been raised regarding their safety.

Inappropriate prescribing can include the intensification of existing drugs and the failure to stop or reduce doses of certain drugs after discharge from hospital.

The findings suggest that better coordination of care is needed to reduce avoidable medication related harms among these patients.

Potentially inappropriate prescribing is common among older adults and is associated with adverse outcomes including emergency hospital attendances and admissions, adverse drug events, and poorer quality of life.

Low emission zones are now in place in 200 cities across Europe, but London findings suggest that interventions that deliver larger reductions in emissions may be needed.

The introduction of the low emission zone in London, UK, has only contributed to modest reductions in exposure to nitrogen oxides from diesel vehicles, and these improvements appear to have little effect on the lung health of children, according to an observational study published in The Lancet Public Health journal.

A 15-minute scan could help diagnose brain damage in babies up to two years earlier than current methods.

In a study of over 200 babies at seven hospitals across the UK and the USA, researchers found the brain scan, called magnetic resonance (MR) spectroscopy, predicted damage with 98 per cent accuracy.

Brain damage affects around one in 300 births in the UK, and is usually caused by oxygen deprivation. However, currently doctors are unable to accurately assess the extent of a newborn baby's brain damage.

During the holiday season, it can be difficult for even the most determined of us to stick to a healthy diet. A piece of Halloween candy here, a pumpkin spice latte there, and suddenly we're left feeling like we forgot what vegetables taste like.

New research published in Diabetologia (the journal of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes [EASD]) shows that children who are larger than average at birth (large for gestational age or LGA) and born to mothers with gestational diabetes are almost three times as likely to be obese as children born a normal size to diabetes-free mothers. The study is by Dr Padma Kaul (Department of Medicine, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada) and co-authors.

The global disease burden of meningitis remains unacceptably high, and progress lags substantially behind that of other vaccine-preventable diseases, warns a new analysis published in The Lancet Neurology.

A report from the Institute for Scientific Information on Coffee (ISIC) titled ' Coffee and type 2 diabetes: A review of the latest research' highlights the potential role of coffee consumption on the reduced risk of developing type 2 diabetes, and the potential mechanisms involved.

Use of practitioner-led complementary and alternative medicine (CAM), such as acupuncture, massage, osteopathy and chiropractic treatment, rose from 12 per cent of the population in 2005 to 16 per cent of the population in 2015, according to a survey led by researchers at the University of Bristol's Centre for Academic Primary Care. However, access to these treatments was unequal, with women, those who are better off and those in the south of England more likely to use CAM.