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Archive for February 11, 2014

Taskboard: a virtual pinboard for creating lists on the iPad

taskboard

Taskboard – Visual Organizer, Lists, Task Manager, and Scheduling (4.5 stars with 194 Ratings) 
iPad App
$1.99  Free for a limited time

 

Keeping track of all your various lists in life, whether they might be shopping lists, todo lists, bill lists, etc., is never easy. However, there is an app for the iPad that aims to make that a little simpler for you, and it’s called Taskboard.

Taskboard is a visual organizer that helps you place your list items on a virtual taskboard so you can see them in whatever order you might need. You can create lists as long as you like, and tap and hold to move item pieces around in the order you might wish. You can add items one at a time. The app will even let you set alerts for tasks you need completed by a certain time. You can also add a splash of color to your cards and boards to make them stand out (requires IAP). There are more than 50 background patterns you can choose from, as well as a built-in help guide if you get lost or have any questions. For anyone who loves their lists and has an iPad, Taskboard seems like a no-brainer.

App Screenshots

via Taskboard: a virtual pinboard for creating lists on the iPad | App Saga.

Grapefruit and White Beets with Yogurt and Tarragon

grapefruit-and-white-beets-with-yogurt-and-tarragon-940x6005527302

INGREDIENTS

3 tablespoons pine nuts

4 medium white or Chioggia (candy-stripe) beets (about 1 lb.)

1 tablespoon olive oil

Kosher salt

2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

2 white grapefruits

¾ cup plain Greek yogurt

¼ cup fresh tarragon leaves

NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION

Calories (kcal) 210 Fat (g) 10 Saturated Fat (g) 2 Cholesterol (mg) 5 Carbohydrates (g) 13 Dietary Fiber (g) 2 Total Sugars (g) 10 Protein (g) 2 Sodium (mg) 230

PREPARATION

View Step-by-Step Directions

Preheat oven to 350°. Toast pine nuts on a rimmed baking sheet, tossing occasionally, until golden brown, 6–8 minutes; let cool.

Increase oven heat to 400°. Place beets on a sheet of parchment paper set on top of a sheet of foil; rub beets with oil and season with salt. Close up parchment and foil around beets. Place packet on a baking sheet and roast beets until tender, 40–50 minutes. Unwrap beets and let cool.

Peel beets and thinly slice into rounds. Toss beets and vinegar in a medium bowl; season with salt and let stand 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, finely grate ½ tsp. zest from 1 grapefruit and set aside. Using a sharp, small knife, cut all peel and white pith from both grapefruits; discard. Thinly slice grapefruit into rounds.

Place yogurt in a small bowl; season with salt and mix well. Spoon onto plates. Top yogurt with beets and sliced grapefruit, then tarragon, toasted pine nuts, and reserved grapefruit zest.

DO AHEAD: Beets can be roasted 2 days ahead; let cool. Cover and chill. Pine nuts can be toasted 1 day ahead; store airtight at room temperature.

via Grapefruit and White Beets with Yogurt and Tarragon – Bon Appétit.

Children with cancer ‘denied drugs because of EU rules’

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EU rules must be changed to allow more testing of potentially life-saving cancer drugs on children, say experts.

The UK’s Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) says the current system acts as a disincentive to drug companies who can seek waivers to avoid doing the trials.

Of 28 new cancer drugs approved in the EU for adults since 2007, 26 could potentially work in children, but 14 have been exempted from child testing.

The ICR wants these “class waivers” to be scrapped.


It’s essential that ground-breaking cancer treatments are tested not only in adults but also in children, whenever the mechanism of action of the drug suggests they could be effective”

Prof Alan AshworthICR chief executive

The European Commission is considering whether to change its guidelines.

The ICR says the EC should no longer grant pharmaceutical companies exemptions on the basis that the adult cancer that the drugs treat does not occur in children.

Although waivers are appropriate when an adult cancer drug will not work in childhood cancers, says the ICR, they are often granted even when a drug has a broader action and could potentially treat childhood tumours.

For example, drugs have been approved for treating adult cancers linked to certain gene mutations, but the manufacturers have been granted waivers from testing the drugs in children who have cancers linked to the same gene errors.

Under current legislation, drug companies are offered longer market exclusivity if they test their products in children. But the ICR says too few take up this incentive.

ICR chief executive Prof Alan Ashworth said: “It’s essential that ground-breaking cancer treatments are tested not only in adults but also in children, whenever the mechanism of action of the drug suggests they could be effective. That requires a change to EU rules, since the current system is failing to provide children with access to new treatments that could add years to their lives.

“Modern cancer treatments are often targeted at genetic features of the tumour that may be common to a number of tumour types, and to adults’ and children’s cancers. That means a drug developed for a cancer in adults could also be effective against a cancer affecting a completely different part of the body in children. The way EU rules are implemented fails to take this into account.”

Once a treatment is licensed for adult use, a doctor can chose to prescribe it “off-label” to a child. But without enough trial evidence to support its use, healthcare providers may not want to pay for it.

Around 1,600 children are diagnosed with cancer every year in the UK.

A spokesperson for the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, which sets guidelines for the use of NHS treatments in England and Wales, says all children and young people with cancer should be offered the opportunity to enter any clinical research trial for which they are eligible, and adequate resources should be provided to support such trials.

via BBC News – Children with cancer ‘denied drugs because of EU rules’.

Ankylosis: The girl whose mouth was locked shut

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A six-year-old girl is able to smile and eat properly for the first time after having surgery to unlock her jaw.

Liliana Cernecca was able to open her mouth only a couple of millimetres after one of her jaw joints fused – a rare condition called ankylosis.

She is one of the youngest people to have had such surgery, which took place at King’s College Hospital in London.

Her family said Liliana had been “bouncing” ever since the operation and was now more confident.

The problem started after an ear infection when Liliana, from south London, was 18 months old.

The bone, which has a similar structure to pumice stone, became full of infection which eventually led to ankylosis – the fusing of the jaw-bone to the skull.

Liliana’s mother, Sonia, told the BBC: “Eating was difficult and messy and it was difficult brushing teeth, she’d never really known being able to take a bite from an apple, we had to just cut food up really small.”

The right side was fused, but the left was growing normally. It meant the shape of her face was becoming progressively skewed to the right as she got older.

Mr Shaun Matthews, consultant oral and maxillofacial surgeon at King’s, said: “We couldn’t leave her like this as things would only get worse.

“Although she already had extremely limited mouth opening – 5mm or thereabouts – the chances are it was going to get worse to the point where she had none at all and clearly that was going to be entirely unacceptable.”

Problems concerned with the brushing of teeth can cause life-threatening consequences as poor dental hygiene can lead to tooth infections, which can readily spread into the head and neck.

‘Pretty darn rare’

Liliana CerneccaLiliana Cernecca’s right jaw became fused to her skull

The head of the jaw joint was removed during an operation so that the jaw was only held on by muscle and ligaments on the right hand side.

The jaw head is expected to re-grow normally with time.

Liliana was nervous about trying to move her mouth after the operation and then “she yawned for the first time, oh my God, it was amazing”, her mum said.

She added: “She was shocked and just touched her face it was just wonderful, I’m getting goosebumps thinking about it.

“She can eat and chew and it just gets better every week, she can eat a banana now.”

One of the biggest differences was in school where she is now more talkative and confident.

Mr Matthews said the procedure was “pretty darn rare” especially in the UK.

He said it was a wonderful and lovely moment when Liliana yawned for the first time, but that she may need more surgery in the future.

“We will monitor her growth very carefully over the next several years and through puberty in particular.

“She may well need to have further interventional surgery as she gets older, particularly once she’s gone through her adolescent growth spurt, but that should be easier to correct now that her main problem has been overcome.”

via BBC News – Ankylosis: The girl whose mouth was locked shut.

Royal Victoria Hospital: Delays ‘contributed to five deaths’

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The patients died at the Royal Victoria Hospital last year

As many as five patients died in Northern Ireland’s biggest hospital last year partly because they were not treated quickly enough, a senior doctor has said.

The patients died at the Royal Victoria Hospital, Dr Tony Stevens said.

Dr Stevens is the medical director of the Belfast Health Trust, which runs the hospital.

He said that a shortage of doctors and patient waiting times had been a significant factor in the deaths.

Speaking on BBC Radio Ulster’s Nolan Show, Dr Stevens said: “Specifically, in terms of a contributory factor from people waiting longer than we would like them to be seen, we believe last year five patients in the Royal.”

When asked if that was five patients who had died or who had came to harm, he replied: “Came to harm, and some, I mean, some came to harm, some died.”

When he was asked how many of those had died, he replied “four or five”.

“These were very sick patients and they were very complex cases, so those patients may have succumbed or died anyway, this is a contributory factor,” he said.

“This is something we’re not happy about, that their care could have been better and their outcome might have been different, but I need to reassure the public, you cannot assume that five patients came into our hospital and, for want of waiting longer than we would want to, they died.”

‘Not enough doctors’

Dr Stevens said there was a shortage of doctors throughout Northern Ireland.

“A significant contributory factor for us is that in Northern Ireland, as in the rest of the UK, we’re struggling to both train and recruit the high calibre of doctors we require.

“We have very excellent doctors working in the Belfast Trust, very excellent doctors – but we need more of them.”

He added: “All these cases are serious adverse incidents. They are reported up to the Health and Social Care Board, they are all fully investigated and part of our policy is to inform the families, so it is my assumption that all the families are fully aware of this, but I am double checking that.”

‘Distressed states’

Garrett Martin, deputy director of the Royal College of Nursing, said they had raised staff concerns with management some 18 months ago. He said the situation was very disturbing.

“We have many members who have approached us in very distressed states,” he said.

“They are saying that they do not have the required staffing levels to provide safe and dignified care, certainly it’s compromised.

“The physical environment where care is taking place is not adequate.”

Maeve Hully, chief executive of the Patient Client Council, said the whole health system had to be looked at.

“I think what’s currently happening is that we’re trying to fix bits, so whatever the problem is today we try and fix that,” she said.

“I think everybody needs to take a step back and say ‘let’s look at the totality of the problems’.”

‘Review findings disappointing’

On Monday, Health Minister Edwin Pootsbriefed the Northern Ireland Assembly on the initial findings of a review set up after a major incident was declared at the Royal over a patient backlog.

The review, by the Regulation and Quality Improvement Authority (RQIA), found that not enough medics are available at times in the Royal’s emergency department to properly treat patients.

Mr Poots said it was “disappointing”.

In June 2013, 105 patients who had been treated at the hospital in the previous eight weeks, were recalled after concerns were raised by medical staff about possible cases of misdiagnosis.

At the time, Dr Stevens said there were “no immediate concerns” about the patients’ well-being.

In March of 2012, an elderly patient apparently died unnoticed on a trolley in the hospital’s A&E.

After that incident, Dr Stevens said the quality of care given by doctors and nurses was not a concern.

The issue of waiting times is explored in a BBC Northern Ireland Spotlight programme, being shown on BBC One at 22:35 GMT on Tuesday.

During the programme, reporter Declan Lawn tells Health and Social Care Board chief executive John Compton that they have obtained figures that show that waiting times have contributed to two deaths in Northern Ireland.

In response, Mr Compton said: “Serious adverse incidents in my experience are a combination of events.

“They may have time aspects to them, they may have diagnostic aspects to them, they may have classification aspects to them, they may have judgement, decision making aspects to them. What we have is a very robust process that looks at serious adverse incidents.”

Dr Tony Stevens
Dr Tony Stevens said there was a shortage of doctors throughout Northern Ireland

 

Analysis

Dr Stevens’ comments were prompted by a BBC NI Spotlight programme that investigated the A&E department at the Royal for the last number of weeks.

It found there were two deaths in which waiting times were a contributing factor.

BBC NI health correspondent Marie-Louise Connolly said: “It’s a very powerful story and powerful information.

“It’s highly, highly unusual for a chief executive or someone in such a high position coming out and being able to give a figure of waiting times contributing to a death.

“It is very significant that in the space of maybe 12 to 18 months that five people that we know of in one hospital died and one of the contributing factors was the length of time they had to wait to see a doctor.”

 

via BBC News – Royal Victoria Hospital: Delays ‘contributed to five deaths’.

Smoking ban in cars carrying children ‘by 2015’

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A ban on smoking in cars carrying children in England will come into force before the next general election, which is due in 2015, No 10 has said.

Ministers plan to act on last night’s vote “sooner rather than later”, sources have told the BBC, suggesting legislation could be introduced in the forthcoming Queen’s Speech.

They added “the details have to be worked through”.

But those who flout the ban could face fines and points on their licences.

The vote – passed by 376 votes to 107 – gave ministers in England and Wales the power to bring in a ban – but does not compel them to do so.

The Welsh government must now decide if they want to make smoking in cars carrying children illegal in Wales.

An amendment to the Children and Families Bill paving the way for a ban was introduced by Labour members of the House of the Lords, which backed it by 222 votes to 197 – despite opposition from the government.

Ministers had argued that the new law was a “blunt instrument” and public information campaigns were preferable.

But the government subsequently introduced its own “more workable” version of the amendment in the Lords, announcing that its MPs would have a free vote on whether to overturn the move in the Commons – meaning that they were able to vote with their consciences, free of pressure from party officials.

The British Medical Association (BMA), which has campaigned for a ban since 2011, said the vote was an “important step forward in reducing tobacco harm”.

Dr Penny Woods, chief executive of the British Lung Foundation, said: “The introduction of a law that would help prevent hundreds of thousands of children from being exposed to second-hand smoke in the car is now within reach.

“With both Houses of Parliament having made their support for the ban clear, the onus is now on the government to act accordingly and make this crucial child protection measure law at the earliest opportunity.”

 Monday’s debate on the legislation: from BBC Democracy Live

Analysis of voting lists revealed divisions in the cabinet over the matter.

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt, Chancellor George Osborne, Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander, Defence Secretary Philip Hammond, Education Secretary Michael Gove, International Development Secretary Justine Greening, Scotland Secretary Alistair Carmichael and Energy Secretary Ed Davey all voted in favour of the ban.

But Justice Secretary Chris Grayling, Home Secretary Theresa May, Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith and Northern Ireland Secretary Theresa Villiers opposed it.

‘Think twice’PM David Cameron missed the vote while visiting flood-stricken areas in south-west England.

His official spokesman declined to say which way the prime minister would have voted had he been able to attend, but he told reporters: “While he understands the concerns that some have expressed, his view is that the time for this kind of approach has come.”

Following the Commons vote, a Welsh government official said: “We have consistently stated that we will consider the possibility of legislation once we have fully evaluated the impact of the campaign.

“We have commissioned studies of children’s exposure to second-hand smoke in cars and results will be available later this year.”

In Scotland, Liberal Democrat MSP Jim Hume has indicated he will be presenting a bill this year to bring in a ban, while Northern Ireland’s health minister has announced plans for a consultation on the issue.

AA president Edmund King said: “As has been the case with enforcing the ban on hand-held phones while driving, campaigns and legislation have been shown to reduce illegal behaviour afterwards.

“If a new law manages to make more adults think twice before lighting up with the kids on board, it will have helped.”

But pro-smoking groups described the move as an “unnecessary intrusion”.

Simon Clark, director of the smokers’ group Forest, said he was “disappointed but not surprised” by the vote and accused the government of being “spineless”.

Smoking in cars

  • Smoke can stay in the air for up to two and a half hours even with a window open
  • Second-hand smoke contains more than 4,000 chemicals, some of which are known to cause cancer
  • Exposure has been strongly linked to chest infections, asthma, ear problems and cot death in children
  • Research indicates 300,000 children in the UK visit a GP each year because of the effects of second-hand smoke, with 9,500 going to hospital
  • Smoking in a car creates a higher concentration of toxins than in a bar – some research has put it at 11 times higher
  • Bans on smoking in cars when children are present already exist in some US states, including California, as well as in parts of Canada and Australia

 

History of anti-smoking measures

  • 2003 – Banned in indoor public spaces in New York
  • 2006 – Scotland introduces similar law
  • 2007 – Wales, Northern Ireland and England follow
  • 2011 – Australian pilot scheme introduces standard packaging – that is without branding
  • 2013 – Government launches independent review of cigarette packaging in England

via BBC News – Smoking ban in cars carrying children ‘by 2015’.

薑黃素進化成膠囊 防癌更夠力!

薑黃素不但是種香料,還可以幫助保健防癌。(圖片/取材自英國《每日郵報》)

薑黃素不但是種香料,還可以幫助保健防癌。(圖片/取材自英國《每日郵報》)

 

咖哩粉中的薑黃素,不但是讓咖哩顏色看起來呈現黃色的原因,也是具有防癌保健功效的關鍵物質,除了直接食用含有薑黃素的食物以外,科學家最新研究讓薑黃素變成可注入體內的補充劑,對於防癌醫學有重大幫助。

美國肯塔基州的路易斯維爾大學(University of Louisville, Kentucky)發表於「癌症預防研究」(Cancer Prevention Research)的期刊中指出,把薑黃素包裝成一種微型膠囊,可以迅速溶解在體內。研究人員讓體內有腫瘤的老鼠服用2顆直徑只有2毫米長的薑黃素膠囊,另外一組有腫瘤的老鼠則是食用咖哩香料。

薑黃素料理 防癌效果較有限

在服用膠囊後的接下來4個月,研究人員密切觀察腫瘤的成長情況,發現食用咖哩香料的老鼠組別,在抑制腫瘤的表現上竟無太大幫助,反而是服用薑黃素膠囊的老鼠,體內的腫瘤迅速地受到抑制,並停止擴散。報告中指出,薑黃素具有極佳的抗氧化與抗發炎特性,因此腫瘤的體積與多重性都可以因而受到控制。

研究指出,咖哩中的薑黃素人體大多在胃部隨著食物分解,直接服用膠囊式,防癌效果更加分。(圖片/取材自英國《每日郵報》)

研究指出,咖哩中的薑黃素人體大多在胃部隨著食物分解,直接服用膠囊式,防癌效果更加分。(圖片/取材自英國《每日郵報》)

 

不過,含有薑黃素的咖哩等食物,卻不一定能對人體產生同等的效用,原因在於食物通常在胃中就被消化掉,無法有效被體內吸收。因此,研究人員希望利用微型膠囊的方式,使薑黃素更有效率的被人體吸收。

薑黃素緩解疼痛 鈴木一朗也愛

薑黃素除了具有抗發炎的效果,還有幫助腸胃蠕動、促進血液循環的好處,甚至也有研究發現,對於老人失智症有預防效果。另外,適度補充薑黃素也能緩解肌肉發炎帶來的痠痛,旅美棒球選手鈴木一朗曾透露每日的早午餐就是咖哩飯,透過攝取薑黃,可以減少肌肉組織發炎的情形。

另外,根據世界衛生組織WHO研究指出,薑黃素一天的攝取量,建議是以每公斤體重使用0~3mg來計算。在安全考量下,建議每日攝取量在200mg以內,避免攝取過多產生反效果。至於患有肝腎疾病或猛爆性肝炎患者,應該先詢問醫師後再食用。

via 薑黃素進化成膠囊 防癌更夠力! | 20140211 | 華人健康網.

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