Tag Archives: Prevention

Drop in UK suicide rate linked to prevention work in England

The suicide rate in Britain fell by 4.7% last year to the lowest level since 2011, with prevention work in England credited for the drop.

The rate fell in England and Wales, although the rate in Wales is generally more erratic because of its smaller population, but increased slightly in Scotland. Overall there were 10.1 suicides per 100,000 in 2016, compared with 10.6 in the previous 12 months.

It was the third consecutive year in which suicide rates have fallen in Britain as the number registered dropped by 202 or 3.4% to 5,688.

A spokeswoman for the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said: “The recent decline in the suicide rate is likely to be due to the suicide prevention work in England by the government, the NHS, charities, the British Transport Police and others.

“The national suicide pevention strategy for England has included work to reduce the risk of suicide in high-risk groups. These include young and middle-aged men, people in the care of mental health services, and those in the criminal justice system.”

The proportion of male suicides was 75% last year, which has remained broadly consistent since the early 1990s. Middle-aged men remain the group at greatest risk.

Citing research by the Samaritans, the ONS says relationship breakdown can contribute to suicide risk, which is greatest among divorced men, who are almost three times more likely to end their lives than men who are married or in a civil partnership.

The suicide rate for males fell by 3.1% to 15.7 per 100,000 males last year, while the rate for females decreased 9.4% to 4.8 per 100,000 after the latter hit a 10-year high in 2015.

Suicide rates
Suicide rates

Inequality is another major risk factor, with people among the most deprived 10% of society more than twice as likely to kill themselves than the least deprived 10%, according to the ONS.

Suicide rates generally fell between 1981 and 2007 before rising again to hit a peak of 11.1 deaths per 100,000 in 2013, although that was still substantially lower than the rates in the 80s and 90s.

The Samaritans chief executive, Ruth Sutherland, welcomed last year’s fall but said the number of deaths was still too high. “Every suicide is a tragedy leaving devastation in its wake,” she said.

“These figures emphasise the urgency with which we as a society need to work together to prevent needless loss of life.”

The charity is campaigning for every area to have an effective suicide plan. The government’s latest progress report on preventing suicide in England, published in January, found that 95% of local authorities “have plans in place or in development”.

Sutherland said: “Suicide is not inevitable, it’s preventable, and politicians, employers, health bodies and educators all have a role in identifying and supporting those most at risk.”

The chair of the Local Government Association’s community wellbeing board, Izzi Seccombe, said a commitment was needed to invest in local government to help tackle mental illness and prevent suicide.

“Suicide is preventable, but it needs to be everybody’s business to work together to tackle this tragic loss of life,” she said.

The suicide rate in England dropped from 10.1 per 100,000 people in 2015 to 9.5 last year, a decrease the ONS described as statistically significant. In Wales it fell from 13.0 to 11.8, but in Scotland it rose from 14.0 to 15.0.

The ONS says differences in Scotland’s coroner system and the way that suicides are certified and registered there make comparisons with the rest of Britain inappropriate.

In the UK, the Samaritans can be contacted on 116 123. In the US, the National Suicide Prevention Hotline is 1-800-273-8255. In Australia, the crisis support service Lifeline is on 13 11 14.

Drop in UK suicide rate linked to prevention work in England

The UK suicide rate fell by 4.7% last year to the lowest level since 2011, with prevention work in England credited for the drop.

The rate fell in England and Wales – although the rate in Wales is generally more erratic because of its smaller population – but increased slightly in Scotland. Overall there were 10.1 suicides per 100,000 in 2016, compared with 10.6 in the previous 12 months.

It was the third consecutive year in which suicide rates have fallen in Britain as the number of suicides registered dropped by 202 (3.4%) to 5,688.

A spokeswoman for the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said: “The recent decline in the suicide rate is likely to be due to the suicide prevention work in England by the government, the NHS, charities, the British Transport Police and others.

“The national suicide pevention strategy for England has included work to reduce the risk of suicide in high-risk groups. These include young and middle-aged men, people in the care of mental health services, and those in the criminal justice system.”

The proportion of male suicides was 75% last year, which has remained broadly consistent since the early 1990s. Middle-aged men remain the group at greatest risk.

Citing research by the Samaritans, the ONS says relationship breakdown can contribute to suicide risk and the greatest risk is among divorced men, who are almost three times more likely to end their lives than men who are married or in a civil partnership.

The suicide rate for males fell by 3.1% to 15.7 per 100,000 males last year, while the rate for females decreased 9.4% to 4.8 per 100,000 females after the latter hit a 10-year high in 2015.

Inequality is another major risk factor, with people among the most deprived 10% of society more than twice as likely to kill themselves than the least deprived 10% of society, according to the ONS.

Suicide rates generally fell between 1981 and 2007 before rising again to hit a peak of 11.1 deaths per 100,000 in 2013, although that was still substantially lower than the rates in the 80s and 90s.

The Samaritans chief executive, Ruth Sutherland, welcomed last year’s fall but said the number of deaths was still too high. “Every suicide is a tragedy leaving devastation in its wake,” she said.

“These figures emphasise the urgency with which we as a society need to work together to prevent needless loss of life.”

The charity is campaigning for every area to have an effective suicide plan. The government’s latest progress report on preventing suicide in England, published in January, found that 95% of local authorities “have plans in place or in development”.

Sutherland said: “Suicide is not inevitable, it’s preventable, and politicians, employers, health bodies and educators all have a role in identifying and supporting those most at risk.”

The suicide rate in England dropped from 10.1 per 100,000 people in 2015 to 9.5 last year, a decrease described by the ONS as “statistically significant”. In Wales it fell from 13.0 to 11.8, but in Scotland it rose from 14.0 to 15.0.

The ONS says differences in Scotland’s coroner system and the way that suicides are certified and registered there make comparisons with the rest of Britain inappropriate.

In the UK, the Samaritans can be contacted on 116 123. In the US, the National Suicide Prevention Hotline is 1-800-273-8255. In Australia, the crisis support service Lifeline is on 13 11 14.

Drop in UK suicide rate linked to prevention work in England

The UK suicide rate fell by 4.7% last year to the lowest level since 2011, with prevention work in England credited for the drop.

The rate fell in England and Wales – although the rate in Wales is generally more erratic because of its smaller population – but increased slightly in Scotland. Overall there were 10.1 suicides per 100,000 in 2016, compared with 10.6 in the previous 12 months.

It was the third consecutive year in which suicide rates have fallen in Britain as the number of suicides registered dropped by 202 (3.4%) to 5,688.

A spokeswoman for the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said: “The recent decline in the suicide rate is likely to be due to the suicide prevention work in England by the government, the NHS, charities, the British Transport Police and others.

“The national suicide pevention strategy for England has included work to reduce the risk of suicide in high-risk groups. These include young and middle-aged men, people in the care of mental health services, and those in the criminal justice system.”

The proportion of male suicides was 75% last year, which has remained broadly consistent since the early 1990s. Middle-aged men remain the group at greatest risk.

Citing research by the Samaritans, the ONS says relationship breakdown can contribute to suicide risk and the greatest risk is among divorced men, who are almost three times more likely to end their lives than men who are married or in a civil partnership.

The suicide rate for males fell by 3.1% to 15.7 per 100,000 males last year, while the rate for females decreased 9.4% to 4.8 per 100,000 females after the latter hit a 10-year high in 2015.

Inequality is another major risk factor, with people among the most deprived 10% of society more than twice as likely to kill themselves than the least deprived 10% of society, according to the ONS.

Suicide rates generally fell between 1981 and 2007 before rising again to hit a peak of 11.1 deaths per 100,000 in 2013, although that was still substantially lower than the rates in the 80s and 90s.

The Samaritans chief executive, Ruth Sutherland, welcomed last year’s fall but said the number of deaths was still too high. “Every suicide is a tragedy leaving devastation in its wake,” she said.

“These figures emphasise the urgency with which we as a society need to work together to prevent needless loss of life.”

The charity is campaigning for every area to have an effective suicide plan. The government’s latest progress report on preventing suicide in England, published in January, found that 95% of local authorities “have plans in place or in development”.

Sutherland said: “Suicide is not inevitable, it’s preventable, and politicians, employers, health bodies and educators all have a role in identifying and supporting those most at risk.”

The suicide rate in England dropped from 10.1 per 100,000 people in 2015 to 9.5 last year, a decrease described by the ONS as “statistically significant”. In Wales it fell from 13.0 to 11.8, but in Scotland it rose from 14.0 to 15.0.

The ONS says differences in Scotland’s coroner system and the way that suicides are certified and registered there make comparisons with the rest of Britain inappropriate.

In the UK, the Samaritans can be contacted on 116 123. In the US, the National Suicide Prevention Hotline is 1-800-273-8255. In Australia, the crisis support service Lifeline is on 13 11 14.

HIV prevention drug PrEP to be offered at sexual health clinics

Drugs that can protect people from infection with HIV will be available to those at risk from September, NHS England has said.

PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) in the form of a once-a-day pill called Truvada will be available to at least 10,000 people whose partners may be HIV-positive through sexual health clinics, which can put them forward for inclusion in a large clinical trial.

NHS England announced the trial after it lost a high court case a year ago against campaigners who argued it should provide the drug for all those at risk of infection. NHS England had said it could not pay and that local authorities should pick up the tab instead, since HIV is one of the public health issues that have been devolved to them.

The NHS list price of Truvada is £355.73 for 30 tablets. However, it is currently purchased at a discounted net price for treating HIV. NHS England has allocated £10m for the trial, including the costs of the medicines and for the sexual health clinics to deliver and monitor the study.

The central question that clinical trials usually address has already been answered: the evidence has shown that people taking PrEP are protected from infection. The new trial will gather evidence on how to run a PrEP programme on a large scale. Sexual health clinics in London, Brighton, Manchester, Liverpool and Sheffield will be the first to enrol people, with full implementation by April next year.

“This major new intervention should complement and supercharge the wide-ranging and increasingly successful effort to prevent HIV,” said NHS England’s chief executive, Simon Stevens. “It’s another milestone in more than three decades worth of progress in tackling one of humanity’s major health challenges.”

Deborah Gold, the chief executive at the National Aids Trust which brought the court case, said: “We already know that PrEP brings down rates of HIV infection, changing lives for those at risk and saving public money. We now need to work with NHS England, local authorities and the sexual health sector to make sure the widest possible range of eligible people at high risk of HIV have access to the trial. We will continue to monitor the uptake of PrEP, aiming to learn as much as possible about how to get PrEP to all those who need it most.

“This is a pivotal moment in the fight against HIV. PrEP, if targeted properly at those in need and at high risk of HIV, offers the possibility of transforming the English HIV epidemic. From September, people at high risk of HIV will have access via the NHS in England to an empowering new tool that is truly individual controlled and not subject to negotiation with a partner, leading to the improvement of many, many lives.”

Ian Green, the chief executive of the Terrence Higgins Trust, said: “Now that the PrEP trial drug has been procured, we’re well on the way to protecting over 10,000 people at risk of HIV. To make sure no one at risk of HIV is left behind, it is crucial that at the end of this trial in three years, a clear process for routinely commissioning PrEP on the NHS is agreed.”

13 Reasons Why ‘not helpful’, suicide prevention summit told

The controversial new Netflix series 13 Reasons Why is “not helpful”, says Australia’s national suicide prevention charity as it strives to reach a cross-sector response to the issue.

Representatives from industries including finance, agribusiness, retail and sport joined suicide prevention experts and academics for the inaugural National Stop Suicide Summit in Sydney on Monday, hosted by Lifeline Australia.


How do you attack the loneliness of modern life that makes people feel this way?

Pete Shmigel, Lifeline

The chief executive of Lifeline, Pete Shmigel, said suicide was a society-wide problem businesses needed to respond to, not just the mental health sector.

Suicide remains the leading cause of death for Australians aged between 15 and 44, with 3,027 deaths in 2015. The overall rate that year was 12.6 per 100,000: the highest rate in more than 10 years.

Suicide was particularly prevalent within male-dominated industries – blue-collar jobs, such as in construction and mining, featured heavily, said Shmigel – as well as those that granted access to the means of suicide, such as medicine.

“If you’ve got access to highly potent, dangerous drugs, you’re going to have a higher rate.”

The issue could not be addressed by the health system alone. “Basically we’re asking: how do you attack the loneliness of modern life that makes people feel this way?”

That presented opportunities for Lifeline Australia and other charities to collaborate with the private sector in suicide prevention, Shmigel said.

Twitter was sharing its data relevant to suicide – “times of day, trigger points, key vocabulary” – with the Black Dog Institute, a not-for-profit facility for diagnosis, treatment and prevention of mood disorders and affiliated with the University of New South Wales.

The financial sector had insight into how debt might factor into suicide risk too, he said. “These people have a wealth of data that we think can empower us in terms of suicide prevention.”

Depictions and discussion of suicide could help when part of the problem was that it was taboo to talk about.

“That’s the fine balance: reporting about suicide as a theme, as a topic, as an experience, to illustrate that hundreds of thousands of people go through [thoughts of suicide] every year, but only 3,000 die by it.

“I think part of the narrative around suicide has to be that … most get through it and go on to live positive and productive lives; let’s share that side of the story.”

Shmigel expressed concern that 13 Reasons Why ran the risk of presenting suicide as a “legitimate choice”, and crossed a line in its detailed depiction of means.

“Once you start talking about means, that gets very dangerous. People who are susceptible, that’s the one situation where you can tip them a bit.

“In this case, 13 Reasons Why has gone over that line, which is not helpful.”

Shmigel also had reservations about the effectiveness of news reports that skirted around suicide deaths, citing “no suspicious circumstances”.

“I for one don’t know if that’s helpful. If we continue to communicate in these secret codes about suicide, we continue to perpetuate some of the shame.”

Honesty and openness was key, said Shmigel, when thoughts of suicide seemed to be “part of the human condition”.

“These thoughts, this behaviour, affect hundreds of thousands of people; it’s not necessarily because you’re crazy or you’re unwell … We need to put it into context and say ‘I’ve had these thoughts too’.

“It happens. We get down. It’s kind of in the nature of how our brains work, and most of us get through it.”

  • Readers seeking support and information about suicide prevention can contact Lifeline on 13 11 14; Suicide Call Back Service 1300 659 467; MensLine Australia 1300 78 99 78; Multicultural Mental Health Australia www.mmha.org.au; Local Aboriginal Medical Service available from www.vibe.com.au

17 Cancer Prevention Strategies

About one of every three Americans will develop some form of cancer during their lifetime. In addition, World Cancer Research Fund International analysis shows that about a third of the most common cancers are preventable through a nutritious diet, maintaining a healthy weight, and doing regular physical activities.

The followings are 17 strategies you can try which is thought to help reduce your risk of cancer.

Avoid Smoking

Cigarette smoke contains polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), similar compounds found in coal tar, which is carcinogenic. Avoid exposure to secondhand smoke as well it has been found to be more harmful than the actual smoke.

Eat Properly

Reduce your consumption of unsaturated fat and processed meat, the former oxidized easily and the latter appears to increase the risk of colon and prostate cancers.

Limit your intake of charbroiled foods especially meat (grilling said to be better) and avoid deep-fried foods. The former contain high PAHs and heterocyclic amines (HCAs). Avoid added sugar as much as possible as it feeds cancer cells.

Increase your consumption of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains as they are loaded with many antioxidant phytonutrients. Add more cruciferous vegetables such as purple/red cabbage and cauliflower to your diet.

Substitute your refined grains with whole grains as fiber diets are thought to reduce the risk of colon cancer.

Don’t forget to eat fish frequently as it will provide you protection from heart disease as well as reducing your risk of prostate cancer.

Eat Clean Foods

Buying meat free of antibiotics and added hormones, which are suspected of causing endocrine problems, including cancer, is a wise thing to do.

If you buy produce grown with pesticides (sold in groceries throughout the country) and conventionally grown food, wash them thoroughly to remove residues.

At least 40 known carcinogens are found in pesticides and you should try to reduce exposure.  It may be best if you soak them in water with a little apple cider vinegar added to it.

Exercise Regularly

Physical activity has been associated with a reduced risk of colon cancer, and it may even help prevent prostate cancer.

Exercise also may help reduce a woman’s risk of breast and possibly reproductive cancers. In addition, exercise is thought to help protect you even if you don’t lose weight.

Stay Lean

Obesity has been associated to increase the risk of many forms of cancer. Calories count; if you need to slim down, take in fewer calories and burn more with exercise.

If you feel hungry in between meals drink a glass of mineral water instead of snacking on something sweet. This may help you reduce calory intakes.

If you Choose to Drink, Limit Yourself to One to Two Drinks a Day

When you drink alcohol, ethanol in is converted to ethanal (an aldehyde) which is very toxic to your cells leading to cell damage and mutation.

Excess alcohol was found to increases the risk of cancers of the mouth, larynx, esophagus, liver, and colon.

It also increases a woman’s risk of breast cancer. Smoking further increases the risk of many alcohol-induced malignancies.

Avoid Unnecessary Exposure to Radiation

Get medical imaging studies ONLY when you need them. CT scan emits a very powerful X-Ray with radiate gamma ray so much higher compared to chest X-Ray machine.

Check your home for residential radon, which increases the risk of lung cancer.

Protect yourself from ultraviolet radiation in sunlight, which increases the risk of melanomas and other skin cancers, not by applying toxic sunscreen to your skin but by taking lots of veggies and fruits.

Some scientists say not to worry about electromagnetic radiation from high-voltage power lines or radiofrequency radiation from microwaves and cell phones as they do not cause cancer. Don’t buy that as their electromagnetic waves may one day showed to be very harmful to your cells and cause mutation.

Avoid Exposure to Industrial and Environmental Toxins

A long-term exposure to asbestos fibers (contain aluminum), benzene, aromatic amines, and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are all associated to increase the risks of several types of cancers.

Avoid Infections that Contribute to Cancer

Hepatitis viruses, HIV, and the human papillomavirus are transmitted sexually or through contaminated needles. Taking preventive measures, being cautious and hygienic are the keys.

Avoid Taking Aspirin

Men who take aspirin or other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) appear to have a lower risk of colon cancer and possibly prostate cancer. However, you may experience stomach bleeding and ulcer, it not treated may cause cancer.

Get Enough Vitamin D

Many experts and doctors now recommend 800 to 1,000 IU of vitamin D a day, a goal they say to be nearly impossible to attain without taking a supplement.

Although not yet proven, they say evidence suggests that vitamin D may help reduce the risk of prostate cancer, colon cancer, and other cancers. During spring, summer and fall, expose yourself to the sunshine when you have the time.

At the same time, they say don’t rely on other supplements as studies show that selenium, vitamins C and E, beta-carotene, folic acid, and multivitamins are not protective and that some may do more harm than good.

Best things you can do to get optimal levels of these nutrients are from proper diets.

Drink Clean Water

Filtered tap water and spring water are good sources of clean water. The types and levels of contaminants removed much depend on the types of the filter system you use.

Filtering your tap water using reverse osmosis filter will yield 100% water free of many types of contaminants, including heavy metals, herbicides, antibiotics and all sorts of organic wastes dumped into the sewages ever day. However, you need to well-balanced nutritious diets that contain ample minerals as reverse osmosis water are minerals free.

To avoid chemical contaminants such as BPA that can leach from plastic bottles, store your water in stainless steel or glass jars.

Drink Potent Antioxidant Teas

Antioxidants are vital for human existence and life as they help neutralize free radicals either produced naturally by the body or taken in your diet.

Coffee, green coffee, and tea (especially green and white tea) are loaded with many antioxidant phytonutrients.  A combo herbal tea prepared by combining ginger, cinnamon, clove, bay leave, and turmeric offers different types of phytonutrients thought to provide synergistic antioxidant effects.

Hot chocolate made by stirring cocoa powder and coconut milk (contain antioxidant polyphenols) in hot water also a good combination that not only imparting a unique taste but also providing antioxidants punch.

Drink Sufficient Amount of Water

Water is a vital component of your body that presents in every cell. Besides acting as electrolytes needed for millions of biochemical reactions it also helps carry nutrients throughout your body, and dilute and carry toxins out of your cells. In the form of urine, it helps flush toxins, therefore. Sufficient amount of daily water intake is crucial in reducing your risk of cancer.  

Don’t Take Constipation Lightly

Regular bowel movement at least once a day, not only help you to maintain good health but it also helps remove toxins out of your body. Constipation, especially chronic constipation can cause you trouble as compacted feces containing all kinds of toxins are absorbed back into your bloodstream.

This, in turn, will burden your liver and eventually impair detoxification leading to built-up toxins everywhere throughout your body. Over time, this may impair many physiological functions, including causing detrimental effects to cell membranes, DNA, enzymes and most probably hormones as well.

Avoiding foods causing constipation and changing your diet to high fiber contents (vegetables and fruits), and taking olive oil and purgative (bitter) herbs might help.

Eat More Greens

Greens not only loaded with fiber, carotenoids, bioflavonoids, polyphenols, vitamin C plus some B vitamins and minerals but also provide magnesium, the main chlorophyll components. The greener the greens, the higher the magnesium contents they possess. Besides acting as an important mineral in energy production, it also plays vital roles in regulating blood pressure and autonomic nervous system (it is parasympathomimetic, meaning it helps you to feel relax and dilate your blood vessels), and an important component of detox enzymes in your liver, the cytochrome P450 family.

Better functional cytochrome P450 family results in better detoxification of many kinds of toxins including the ones that are carcinogenic

Pay Attention to Pain

You may always think pain and diarrhea you have been experiencing over the years as irritable bowel syndrome typical symptoms and you can’t be bothered to get a proper diagnosis. From time to time, I am sure you hear there are people especially elderly end up hospitalized or bed-ridden after being diagnosed for having intestinal/bowel cancer.

So, never take chronic (long-term) pain, bloating, diarrhea, headache or lump lightly as they can be either typical illnesses that can heal or some forms of cancers that are hard for you to accept they happen to you.

Take Home Message

They may be other strategies that you might think of, It’s you who decide and take care of your own health.

Prevention is Always The Best Medicine

Further Readings:

  1. Longer Telomeres May Help Deter Diseases And Increase Life Expectancy
  2. Healthy Living – Definition and How to Go About It

Half of GPs unaware of drug’s use in cancer prevention – study

A “worrying” number of family doctors are not offering at-risk patients a preventive breast cancer drug, a charity has said.

A study found that only half of GPs were aware the drug tamoxifen could be used to reduce the risk of breast cancer.

In 2013 the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) recommended that women deemed to be at moderate or high risk of breast cancer should be offered chemoprevention drugs including tamoxifen.

But the new research found that just over half of GPs knew the medication could be used in this way. The study, published in the British Journal of General Practice, also found that three-quarters of GPs were not aware of the Nice guidelines.

Delyth Morgan, chief executive of the charity Breast Cancer Now, said: “It is extremely concerning that many women at an increased risk of breast cancer are still not being offered the choice of taking tamoxifen to reduce their risk. Given the current debate on the increasing patient demand on the NHS, it is essential that we make the most of low-cost preventive measures such as tamoxifen.

“This study highlights that greater support needs to be offered to GPs in prescribing off-patent drugs in new uses. Ultimately, while not all women will want to take tamoxifen as it has side-effects as well as benefits, it’s imperative that they are offered the choice and given all the information they need to make an informed decision.”

The study involved online responses from 928 family doctors from England, Northern Ireland and Wales. The researchers presented respondents with a series of scenarios in which a healthy patient was seeking a tamoxifen prescription. They found 51% of the GPs knew the drug could reduce breast cancer risk, and 24% said they were aware of the relevant professional advice.

They found GPs were more comfortable discussing and more willing to prescribe or recommend these drugs if supported by hospital doctors. Cancer Research UK (CRUK) called for better support for GPs.

The tamoxifen study formed part of a CRUK report that also looks at other cancer-preventing drugs. The report says 73% of GPs know that aspirin could reduce the risk of bowel cancer in people who are at high risk.

Among GPs who had heard of the Lynch syndrome – a genetic condition that can increase a person’s risk of bowel cancer, cancer of the womb and some other cancers – just under half knew that aspirin could reduce the risk of cancers linked to the syndrome.

The report makes a number of recommendations to ensure cancer-preventing drugs are routinely discussed with and offered to patients who may benefit.

Its author, Dr Samuel Smith, a CRUK fellow at the University of Leeds, said: “Our report helps us to understand GP attitudes towards the use of cancer-preventing drugs. It’s clear that more needs to be done to promote the evidence and guidance associated with these drugs, particularly as research reveals GPs are lacking the support to discuss effectively the risks and benefits of preventive therapy.”

Prof Arnie Purushotham, CRUK’s senior clinical adviser, said: “Cancer-preventing drugs have the potential to have a huge impact by reducing the risk of cancer developing in the first place. This report reveals that it’s vital that GPs are given the right support and information so they are confident to explore the value of these drugs with those who would benefit from them, wherever they are in the UK.

“While this study focuses on reducing cancer risk, chemoprevention can also be used to reduce the risk of some cancers returning or spreading. It’s essential that the NHS provides a clear steer to doctors to ensure all patients have equal access to treatments that could benefit them.”

NHS Digital data shows there were 662,264 prescriptions dispensed for tamoxifen in 2015.

Prof Helen Stokes-Lampard, chair of the Royal College of GPs, said: “The benefits of using long-term medication to lower the risk of developing cancer are becoming clearer as new research findings become available, and it’s important that this informs official clinical guidelines and that GPs and our teams are aware of them.

“But with clinical guidelines rightly being updated so frequently and given the incredibly broad spectrum of knowledge GPs need to have, it’s understandable that family doctors often take cues from our specialist colleagues in hospitals, so improved communication channels between primary and secondary care would certainly be helpful.”

Donor pledges C$380,000 for suicide prevention in First Nations community

A private donor is being lauded by aboriginal leaders for stepping in “where the government of Canada has failed” after anonymously pledging C$ 380,000 to provide mental health workers for a suicide-stricken First Nations community in northern Ontario.

One week ago, Wapekeka First Nation – reeling from the recent suicides of Jolynn Winter and Chantel Fox, both 12 years old – declared a state of emergency. Suicide had tightened its grip on the remote community of 430 people, forcing officials to fly out four young girls to be placed on 24-hour suicide watch and label another 26 students as high risk for suicide.

“Our community is in crisis,” said Joshua Frogg, the spokesman for Wapekeka First Nation. Months earlier the community had approached federal officials, detailing a spike in drug use and suicide attempts. Noting concerns about a potential suicide pact among young women, the community requested C$ 376,706 to hire and train four mental health workers.

The request was denied by Health Canada, who later said the request arrived at an “awkward” time in the federal funding cycle. As the community grieved the loss of two girls, leaders drew a direct link between their deaths and the denied funds. “Our community plan was turned down by government and now two are dead,” said Frogg.

Others saw the denied request as part of a larger pattern, one that has left basic health and mental health services on reserves chronically underfunded, with deadly consequences. Across Canada, indigenous youth are five to six times more likely to die by suicide than their non-indigenous counterparts.

“The healthcare system on reserves is far inferior to what other people get,” said Mike Kirlew, a physician who works in Wapekeka First Nation. “The cost of our complacency will be paid for, in full, in the cost of children’s lives.”

This week the community said an anonymous donor had pledged to fund the full amount of the denied request. “Words cannot express how grateful we are that this donor has committed to helping our young people with their mental health struggles,” Chief Brennan Sainnawap said in a statement.

The donor contacted the community last week, moved by reports of the suicide crisis, said Grand Chief Alvin Fiddler of the Nishnawbe Aski Nation, which represents First Nations in northern Ontario. “The continued loss of First Nation youth to suicide is unacceptable to the Canadian public.”

An initial installment of C$ 30,000 was wired to the community on Monday and the community has already begun hiring mental health workers. “We are grateful that a private donor has stepped in where the government of Canada has failed,” added Fiddler.

Health Canada said it was aware of the donation. After news of the suicides broke, the government reversed its decision and said it would be able to provide the funding. Government officials are in talks with Sainnawap but have yet to confirm the exact amount that will be provided, the agency said in a statement.

Genital Herpes Prevention You Need To Know

Herpes viruses are infectious agents spread by contact. Common cold and flu viruses, which are airborne in tiny droplets, can be contracted by simply breathing the contaminated air from others; no direct contact is needed at all. Herpes, however, must be contracted from another individual. Direct contact must be made. Break the chain of direct contact, and herpes would cease to be an epidemic.

Facial herpes, the most common variety, is usually transmitted by kissing while a sore is present on the lips, mouth, or face. Genital herpes is also spread by direct contact, usually during sex. The soft skin and mucous membranes of the genital area are permeable enough to allow entry of the herpes virus. In less delicate areas, the virus needs a break in the skin or an orifice in order to gain entry to the body.

Herpes also must be contracted during a time other than the latent period. During active periods there is usually enough virus present on the surface of the body to infect someone if he comes in contact with it. Fortunately, the area of infection is usually fairly well localized, so that prevention can be effected as long as some caution is exercise Remember that not everyone who comes into contact wit the virus will become infected with the disease. Other factor come into play. One of the variables is the amount of virus that enters the body through the mucous membranes or break in the skin. Whether or not the person has any degree of immunity to the virus is another variable. The overall stat of health and resistance to any kind of infection is ye another.

WHEN ARE YOU INFECTIOUS?

Prodromes vary from person to person, as does the ability to detect the prodromal signs. Knowing your prodromal signs is important. The minute you experience the tingling, itching, or whatever sign you have grown to know, you must, from that moment, consider yourself contagious. These warning signs indicate that there is probably viral activity near the surface of the skin. Most likely you will have evidence of sores a short time later.

During prodromal periods triggering activities should be avoided. Sex should be avoided because of possible contagion. Friction of sex or masturbation may precipitate a recurrence that the body may otherwise successfully fight off. It is not unusual for a patient to report breaking out in sores the day after making love during a prodromal period.

Once any sign appears on the skin, you must assume herpes virus is present. The fluid in blisters is high in concentrations of virus. Once the lesions begin to heal and scab over, viruses are still present. You should assume contagion and avoid triggering aggravation until the skin is completely healed.

Some people seem to feel that anyone with herpes should limit sexual involvement to others with the disease. This belief is probably fed by the myth that two people with herpes do not have to worry about cross infection. The truth is that they have to be just as careful as others about physical contact during an episode, because they may have different strains of the virus.

PREVENTIVE MEASURES

Avoiding autoinnoculation and the inoculation of others is important. It is not easy to leave the sores alone. Sometimes we don’t even realize that we have touched them. Here are some tips to help you in preventing the spread of the virus:

• Don’t poke or probe the sores.
• Don’t lick a sore on your lip.
• Don’t touch sores on the genitals while urinating.
• Don’t use saliva as a wetting agent for your contact lenses.
• Don’t use a lip balm on the sore and then apply it to the uninfected part of the lip. Don’t play with facial hair such as a moustache or beard while you have a sore on the face.
• Don’t smoke cigarettes in such a way as to contact the sore.
• Don’t have oral sex when either partner has an active sore on the genitals or the face. Don’t rest your chin on your hand while relaxing.
• DO wash your hands first thing upon waking in the morning. You may have touched the sores during the night. Above all, wash your hands before rubbing your eyes!
• D0 wash your hands before inserting contact lenses, even when using proper wetting solution.
• DO use common sense. The important thing to remember is the virus is transferable to other parts of your body as well as to other people. The second you inadvertently touch the sore, thoroughly wash your hands.

Know your partner. This will help greatly in the prevention of herpes. That extra measure of caution and patience may pay off with a tremendous dividend of health. If you are with a new partner and not completely confident, use a condom or insist that your partner use one.

Condoms. A condom may be of some help in protecting I male against the shedding of virus from an asymptomatic female. It will provide protection only for the area covered. If there are lesions that cannot be protected, the condom will be of little use. If a woman has lesions that can contact areas not protected by the condom, the same rule applies. You should not have sex during the prodrome or while sores are present, but if you must, you should be aware that applying and removing a condom may aggravate the area and cause the virus to spread or trigger a prodrome into becoming an active episode that may otherwise have been avoided.

If you have herpes you should consider a condom nothing more than a birth control device. With the start of the prodrome until the lesions heal completely, the only sure preventive measure is no intercourse and no direct contact.

INFECTION FROM ASYMPTOMATIC PARTNERS

The question frequently comes up as to whether or not it is possible to contract herpes from a partner who has no symptoms. There are people who have no symptoms or experience such a mild initial attack that it goes unnoticed. Subclinical infections may be quite common and there is no way of telling if clinical recurrences will occur. It is possible for transmission to take place even when there are no obvious symptoms. It is impossible to say to what degree asymptomatic shedding of virus is responsible for transmission of herpes, since it is unknown how much virus is required to cause the disease. Sexually active people with multiple partners should be screened periodically for any STD problems which might otherwise go undetected until more serious symptoms become evident.

Sources:

– http://astrobiosociety.org/assessing-effectiveness-herpes-treatments/

– http://www.cdc.gov/std/herpes/STDFact-Herpes-detailed.htm

– http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/21/health/research/21herpes.html

– https://www.sciencenews.org/article/how-herpes-re-rears-its-ugly-head

–  http://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/203222

– https://books.google.com/books?id=PoRB5qQXW70C&pg=PA28#v=onepage&q&f=false

4 Reasons Why BTA Should Be Part of Your Cancer Prevention Toolbox

Oops! You forgot all about that stick of butter that has sat on your kitchen counter for over a week. When you finally get around to opening the lid, there is that familiar unpleasant odor. You know the one: that characteristic foul smell that tells you when food has gone bad. That smell is also a reminder, however, that Butyric Acid (BTA) is present.

Although I definitely don’t recommend eating rancid butter, it is important to realize that Butyric Acid, in this case within butter, is a true healing substance that has the ability to stabilize many disease conditions, including possibly cancer.

What is Butyric Acid?

The word “butyric,” in fact, comes from the Greek word for butter, which makes sense since butyric acid makes up about 4 percent of the contents of butter. It is also found in other animal products, such as raw milk, ghee and some cheeses. Outside of the animal kingdom, butyric acid can be found in Jerusalem artichokes, raw jicama, and raw dandelion greens.

Butyric acid is a short-chain saturated fatty acid that is soluble in water. It sometimes goes by other names such as: butanoic acid, n-butyric acid, n-butonoic acid and proylformic acid. The substance “butyrate” is sometimes used interchangeably with BTA; this has a different yet very similar chemical structure.

Four Reasons Why Butyric Acid is Important for Cancer Healing and Prevention

#1 Gut Healing. The most significant healing property butyric acid possesses is its ability to heal the gut, especially the colon. This is because practically all of the short-chain fatty acids in your large intestine are made up of it. BTA is create through the fermentation of carbohydrates, especially those that are “prebiotics.” This makes butyric acid a real healer for conditions such as Crohn’s disease and IBS. Over a century ago, Nobel Prize-winning Russian scientist Ilya Metchnikoff made the connection between unhealthy gut flora and disease. Since then over a thousand studies have been conducted which have made the same connection, including the link between a weak digestive system and cancer.

#2 Insulin Stabilizing.  The presence of BTA also been proven to be effective in stabilizing diabetes and insulin resistance as well as helping obese individuals shed pounds, again through BTA’s ability to rebalance gut flora. Animal studies have shown that rats given a high-fat diet and also supplementation in BTA were all able to preserve normal blood glucose levels and insulin tolerance while at the same time maintaining their original weight.

The connection between Type 2 diabetes and cancer is very clear. A recent study published in the official journal of the American Diabetes Association found that cytokines, which are responsible for the inflammatory response and also cancer tumor growth, were elevated in those with Type 2 diabetes.

#3 Super Anti-Inflammatory. The presence of BTA in the large intestine can severely reduce inflammatory responses in general and, according to some studies, may even help to boost the immune system. The inflammatory response is responsible for the onset of many disease conditions. As mentioned above, a high level of inflammatory cytokines is a common cancer marker, including for breast cancer.

#4 Directly Healing Cancer Tumors.

Studies have shown a direct healing connection between butyric acid and cancer healing. An in vitro 2011 study conducted by the Southern Illinois University School of Medicine and the Simmons Cancer Institute found that treatment with butyrate led to the programmed cell death (apoptosis) of colon cancer cells. Although more research needs to be done, this study opens up the possibility that BTA may have a similar effect on other forms of cancer as well.

Taking Butyric Acid

Experts agree that getting BTA in as natural a way as possible is the most effective. One of the best way is through eating ghee. Ghee is butter where the milk solids and water are extracted. It can be considered a super food not only because it contains high levels of butyric acid but also because it is high in essential vitamins such as D and A as well as other gut-healing and health-balancing properties.  I get my BTA by putting ghee in my morning hot cacao drink and occasional in my coffee. I froth it all up in a blender and it is delicious!

There is really no known side effects to upping your BTA consumption. Of course, be sure to consult with your holistic health practitioner before adding BTA to your diet, especially if you are on a healing journey with cancer.

Dr. Veronique Desaulniers, better known as Dr. V, is the founder of  the 7 Essentials System ™, a step-by-step guide that teaches you exactly how to prevent and heal Breast Cancer naturally. To get your FREE 7-Day Mini e-Course and to receive her weekly action steps and inspiring articles on the power of Natural Medicine, visit her at BreastCancerConqueror.com