Bedford Hill Family Practice

120 Bedford Hill
Balham
SW12 9HS
Tel: 020 8673 1720

Family Planning

All doctors are able to offer family planning advice during their normal surgery. Oral contraceptives: Please make an appointment with a practice nurse (or a GP).

  • Coils: Fitted at the Family Planning Clinic
  • Contraceptive implants: We do not fit these at the surgery and will ask you to attend the Family Planning Clinic at Balham Health Centre.
  • Contraceptive injections: Are administered by the practice nurses.
  • Emergency Contraception: Please contact a practice nurse (or a GP) as soon as possible.

The Family Planning Clinic at Balham Health Centre is held on the following days:

Tuesday 6.00pm - 8.00pm
Thursday 9.30am - 11.30am
Friday 5.00pm - 7.00pm

 

 

NHS Choices - Behind the headlines

  • Social care reforms announced

    Most of the UK media is covering the announcement made in Parliament by Jeremy Hunt, Secretary of State for Health, about proposed changes to social care.

    The two confirmed points to have garnered the most media attention in the run-up to the announcement are:

    • a ‘cost cap’ of £75,000 worth of care costs – after this...
  • Can exercise offset some of the harms of regular drinking?

    "Adults who booze regularly but exercise for five hours a week are no more likely to die than teetotallers," the Mail Online reports.

    A study suggests exercise may compensate for some, but certainly not all, of the harms associated with excessive alcohol consumption. This latest study looked at deaths from...

  • Fitness trackers 'don't help you lose weight'

    "Fitness trackers may not help weight loss," reports Sky News on a new trial which investigated whether using wearable technology helped people lose more weight compared to standard weight-loss programmes.

    Researchers tracked 470 overweight or obese people aged 18 to 35, for 24 months. Everyone in the study was put on a low-...

  • GM chemicals in cleaning products are 'potent allergens'

    "GM enzymes used in household products 'are potent allergens'," reports The Daily Mail following research on the potential for genetically modified enzymes to cause allergies.

    Researchers took blood samples from 813 workers routinely exposed to genetically modified (GM) enzymes from working in the food, drinks, chemicals,...

  • People with 'obesity gene' can still lose weight

    "No excuses not to slim as 'fat gene' found not to affect ability to lose weight," reports The Daily Telegraph.

    It is one of several news outlets to report on research suggesting people who put on weight easily because of a genetic variant do just as well as other people on weight loss interventions such as diet, exercise...

  • NICE issues new guidelines on sexting in teens

    "An NHS watchdog has issued advice about sexting to help professionals spot the difference between 'normal' sexual experimentation and harmful sexual behaviour among children and teens," BBC News reports.

    The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has issued...

  • Cuddling a kitten almost certainly won't kill you

    "Cuddling kittens can kill you," warns The Telegraph in one of the more alarming headlines to appear in the national press for some time.

    But cat lovers can relax – deaths and serious illness from "killer kittens" with so-called cat scratch disease (CSD) are exceedingly rare.

    In fact, the study on which...

  • Contraceptive pills not proven to protect against the flu

    "How taking the pill could protect you from the flu," was the curious headline on a recent Mail Online article.

    The equally curious animal study involved female mice who had their ovaries surgically removed – half were then given progesterone implants, half weren't.

    Progesterone is one of the active ingredients in...

  • Women dying needlessly due to not attending cervical screening

    "The lives of hundreds more cervical cancer patients could be saved if all those eligible went for screening," BBC News reports.

    An analysis estimates an additional 347 deaths per year in England could be prevented if all eligible women attended cervical screening.

    ...

  • Could fertility breakthrough lead to babies with no mothers?

    "Fertility breakthrough means babies could be conceived from skin cells – so men can have babies with each other," is the excitable headline in the Daily Mirror.

    But the research in the news is at an early stage – and was in mice. Despite reporting to the contrary, the study involved female eggs, not skin cells.

    This...

  • Invasive early prostate cancer treatments not always needed

    "Closely monitoring prostate cancer offers just as good a chance of survival as harsh and invasive treatments," The Daily Telegraph reports.

    Researchers found invasive treatments for early stage prostate cancer, such as surgery, didn't...

  • E-cigarettes 'help thousands successfully quit smoking'

    "The rise in popularity of e-cigarettes in the UK may have resulted in more successful attempts to quit smoking," BBC News reports.

    A UK study looking at survey data from England over the past 10 years showed the proportion of successful quit attempts rose in line with the number of smokers using e-cigarettes.

    But...

  • Coil 'more effective' than morning after pill

    "Women should use the coil rather than the morning-after pill as emergency contraception, according to official new guidelines," the Mail Online reports.

    The guidelines, from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), cite previous research showing the coil has a lower failure rate than other forms of...

  • Statins are 'safe, effective and should be used more widely'

    "The benefits of statins are hugely underestimated and far outweigh any harm," the Daily Mail reports.

    A major review also argues that the risks of statins have been exaggerated by both the media and some sections of the medical profession.

    The review in question explored a variety of evidence to weigh up the...

  • C-section babies 'more likely' to grow up obese

    "Babies born by caesarean more likely to be obese as adults, study suggests," The Guardian reports.

    A US study found that babies born via caesarean section had a 64% increased risk of becoming ...

  • Pollution particles in the brain 'linked to Alzheimer's disease'

    "Air pollution particles linked to Alzheimer's found in human brain," Sky News reports after new research found tiny particles of magnetite – a potentially toxic by-product of traffic pollution – in samples of brain tissue.

    The samples, obtained after death, were taken from 29 people from Mexico City and eight people from...

  • Vitamin D 'protects against severe asthma attacks'

    "Vitamin D supplements could halve risk of serious asthma attacks," The Guardian reports. A review of previous data found that vitamin D supplements could have a protective effect against serious asthma attacks when taken alongside normal...

  • Radiotherapy 'provides no benefit for secondary brain tumours'

    "'Whole brain radiotherapy' is of no benefit to people with lung cancer which has spread to the brain," BBC News reports.

    A UK study found radiotherapy did not significantly increase survival times and quality of life when compared with standard care.

    Researchers investigated whether giving ...

  • Billions at potential risk from Zika virus in Africa and Asia

    "Zika: Two billion at risk in Africa and Asia," BBC News reports. A new modelling study suggests the virus could spread, via air travel, to Asia and Africa.

    Zika virus disease is mainly spread by mosquitoes. For most people it is a mild infection...

  • Plaque busting drug shows early promise in preventing Alzheimer's

    "A revolutionary drug that could stop people from ever developing Alzheimer's disease has been unveiled," the Daily Mail reports.

    The drug, aducanumab, encourages the immune system to attack the abnormal plaques of protein linked to Alzheimer'...

  • Targeting 'addiction switch' may help combat alcoholism

    "Alcoholics are missing 'vital chemical in their brain' that helps control addiction," the Daily Express reports.

    Research carried out on rats suggests that low levels of the PRDM2 enzyme could trigger self-destructive addictive behaviour associated...

  • One in three heart attack cases 'misdiagnosed'

    BBC News reports a "third [of people] given wrong initial heart attack diagnosis", while The Sun makes the totally unsupported claim that "Doctors miss heart attacks in women 'because they expect victims to be fat, middle-aged men'."

    These headlines are based on a study that analysed a database containing...

  • Baby doll simulators may actually increase teen pregnancy rates

    "Young girls exposed to electronic babies – designed to simulate the real experience of having a baby and discourage teenage pregnancy – were more likely to get pregnant," The Guardian reports.

    "Infant simulators" – dolls that mimic the need of a baby in terms of feeding and nappy changing through crying – are...

  • Excess body fat now linked to 13 different types of cancer

    "Experts have linked eight more cancers to being overweight or obese, nearly tripling the list from five to 13," the Daily Mail reports.

    This is the latest finding of the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), a group of cancer experts from around the world that look at risk...

  • Being sick of the daily commute could be affecting your health

    "Why your commute is killing you: stressful rush-hour journeys are shortening commuters' lifespans," The Sun reports after the Royal Society for Public Health published a report arguing that commuting can negatively impact both physical and mental health.

    The report highlights research that suggests non-active commuting –...

  • Childhood head injury linked to range of adult health problems

    "Millions of Brits face dying early because of something they did when they were children," says the Daily Mirror's needlessly alarming headline.

    The newspaper reports on a study which found that a head injury causing concussion (known as a...

  • Combined HRT breast cancer risk 'may have been underestimated'

    "Women who take a common form of HRT are nearly three times as likely to get breast cancer, a major study has found," the Daily Mail reports.

    Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is a treatment used to relieve symptoms of the...

  • Gene scanning 'could improve screening for oesophageal cancer'

    "Simple test can now reveal which heartburn patients are at risk of oesophageal cancer," is the hopeful headline in the Daily Mail, reporting on a new study from researchers at Queen Mary University of London.

    The researchers have been investigating whether a test for patients with Barrett's oesophagus may be able to...

  • Animal research suggests Zika could affect the adult brain

    "Zika virus may cause long-term memory damage, similar to Alzheimer's disease," The Daily Telegraph reports. At the moment such a claim is pure speculation as it is based on research into mice.

    Currently, the effects of the Zika virus are thought...

  • Perfect painkiller? Safe alternative to opiates may have been found

    The Independent has claimed: "Scientists discover what could be a 'perfect' painkiller without side effects".

    Opiate-based painkillers such as morphine are extremely effective in relieving pain. The problem is that they are also addictive if taken on a medium- to long-term basis. Also morphine, if taken at high dosage, can...

  • Calcium supplements linked to post-stroke dementia in women

    "Calcium supplements could dramatically raise the risk of dementia in women who suffer a stroke, a new study found," the Mail Online reports. However, the sample size (98) of women taking supplements was small, which casts doubts on the reliability of the claims.
     
    The Swedish study included 700 women aged over 70 without...

  • Women's cancer risk may increase the longer they're obese

    "Fat women who refuse to diet 'are more likely to get cancer'," states the Mail Online, using a headline that is both inaccurate and offensive.

    The study it reports on looked at the relationship between weight during adulthood, and cancer risk.

    The researchers found that duration of time spent overweight or...

  • Does time of day influence our susceptibility to infection?

    "Viruses more dangerous in the morning," BBC News reports, but The Telegraph tells us that "the evening commute is worse for health".

    So who's right? It depends if you're talking about mice or humans. What we do know is shift workers may be at added risk of catching a viral infection.

    The apparently...

  • UK heart disease and stroke death rates now lower than cancer

    "Heart disease deaths now lower than cancer – but obesity crisis means this may not last," the Daily Mirror reports. A major review of European trends in cardiovascular disease deaths found that UK cancer deaths overtook cardiovascular deaths in 2014.

    ...

  • Virtual reality helped improve nerve function in paralysed people

    "Virtual reality has helped eight paralysed patients regain some feeling in their legs in 'a big surprise'," Sky News reports.

    Researchers using virtual reality (VR) combined with a robotic exoskeleton were surprised to find participants regained some nerve function.

    The people, eight in total, with ...

  • Gene patterns may explain brain's Alzheimer's vulnerability

    "Scientists say they have discovered a possible explanation for how Alzheimer's disease spreads in the brain," The Guardian reports.

    Gene patterns in specific areas may explain why the disease tends to start in these regions, before spreading through the brain.

    The patterns were found in areas of healthy brains that...

  • Sudden infant death advice 'being ignored' due to flat head worries

    "Parents are risking their babies' lives by putting expensive pillows in their cots to stop the back of their heads being flattened," the Daily Mail reports.

    A review of parental attitudes found some were ignoring advice about sudden...

  • Decline in dog sperm quality 'could be a concern for humans'

    "Study showing decline in dog fertility may have human implications," The Guardian reports. The study in question found a decline in the quality of British dogs' sperm since 1988.

    The worry is that this is being caused by environmental factors that may also affect human sperm quality and count.

    The study aimed to...

  • Public Health England: music festivals 'are measles hotspots'

    "Music festivals including Glastonbury have become a hotbed of measles this summer, Public Health England has warned," BBC News reports.

    The public health body have called on young people to check their vaccination status before attending an event.

    ...

  • Volunteering may boost mental wellbeing in older adults

    "Giving up time for charity work found to boost mental wellbeing as people get older," the Mail Online reports. A new UK-based study found that volunteering was associated with increased mental wellbeing; but mainly in adults aged between 40 and 70.

    Researchers used data from the...

  • New drug for severe asthma 'shows massive promise'

    "Asthma drug 'gamechanger' could revolutionise treatment," The Guardian reports after a new drug called fevipiprant showed promising results in a small study of 61 people with moderate to severe asthma.

    Asthma is an autoimmune condition, which means...

  • Claims acupuncture 'staves off dementia' are missing the point

    "Acupuncture may help elderly people retain their memory, research suggests," the Daily Mail reports.

    But the research the news is based on isn't new; it is in fact a review of previous trials, most of which were judged as being of poor quality.

    This was a review that pooled the results of five Chinese studies...

  • Can disruption to your body clock influence back pain symptoms?

    "Scientists have discovered that our spinal discs have a 24-hour body clock that can cause … pain when it gets out of synch," the Daily Mail reports; overstating research limited to mice.

    While the results may have human implications at some point in the future, the study does not demonstrate the effects of "a good...

  • Vaginal douching 'linked to increased ovarian cancer risk'

    "Women who douche are almost twice as likely to get ovarian cancer," Metro reports after a study of more than 40,000 women from the US and Puerto Rico found a significant link between douching and ovarian cancer – almost twice the risk of no use.

    ...

  • Around 1 in 10 UK young people report distressing sex problems

    "Large number of young people experience sex problems," The Guardian reports. In one of the largest UK surveys of its kind, 1 in 10 young men and 1 in 8 young women reported having persistent distressing sexual problems.

    Commonly reported problems included...

  • Swapping animal protein for plant protein 'may improve health'

    "Ditch sausages for a longer life," The Telegraph advises after a new study found swapping animal sources of protein in favour of plant sources was linked to a longer lifespan.

    Researchers looked at previously recorded data on health outcomes and diet for more than 130,000 US health professionals.

    They found animal...

  • Researchers may have found an 'antidepressant roadblock'

    "Hope for faster treatment for depression after scientists discover why antidepressants can take months to work," the Mail Online reports. New research suggests manipulating the brain's Gα protein may accelerate the effect of the drugs.

    Currently the most widely used ...

  • Menopause 'may mix up exercise reward pathways in the brain'

    "Menopause 'crushes your motivation to exercise'," the Mail Online reports. But before you bin your gym card, the study it reports on involved rats, not women.

    The female rats were genetically engineered to have either a high or low exercise capacity.

    Those who had their ovaries removed to model human...

  • New weapon in superbug war may be right under our noses

    "Antibiotic resistance: 'snot wars' study yields new class of drugs," BBC News reports.

    Researchers studying a type of bacteria found in many people's nostrils have used this knowledge to develop a possible new antibiotic called lugdunin.

    While it has not yet been tested in humans, this is a development not to be...

  • An hour of exercise a day may compensate for an 'office lifestyle'

    "Office workers must exercise for an hour a day to counter death risk," The Daily Telegraph reports.

    A major new study suggests that at least an hour's exercise a day may compensate for the risks of a sedentary lifestyle.

    The study, which looked at previous research involving more than a million people, delivered a...

  • Could a hearing test help diagnose autism in babies?

    "A hearing test is being hailed as a revolutionary technique to spot autism years earlier than current methods can," the Mail Online reports. The test is based on measuring how the inner ear reacts to sound.

    But while the test shows promise, the headline is premature. The study the report is based on only looked at boys aged...

  • 'Netflix and kill?' Binge watching box-sets linked to blood clots

    "Binge watching TV can actually kill you, study finds," The Independent reports in a somewhat exaggerated manner. The Japanese study its report is based on looked at prolonged TV watching and the risk of blood clots, and only found a very weak association.

    Researchers were specifically looking at deaths caused by ...

  • Smokers who try to quit 'drink less alcohol', too

    "How quitting smoking can be good for your liver: Those who have given up cigarettes 'drink less alcohol too'," the Mail Online reports.

    The news follows an analysis of two ongoing studies that aimed to investigate whether people who attempt to stop smoking are more likely than other smokers to report lowering their alcohol...

  • Alcohol 'a direct cause of seven types of cancer'

    "Even one glass of wine a day raises the risk of cancer: Alarming study reveals booze is linked to at least seven forms of the disease," reports the Mail Online.

    The news comes from a review that aimed to summarise data from a range of previous studies to evaluate the strength of evidence that...

  • Eating oily fish 'may boost bowel cancer survival'

    "Oily fish may reduce risk of death from bowel cancer, study suggests," reports The Telegraph.

    US research found people with bowel cancer who increased their intake of oily fish after diagnosis were less likely to die from...

  • The new guidelines on vitamin D – what you need to know

    "Experts recommend everyone consider vitamin D supplements over winter," says a headline in today's Daily Mail, while The Guardian urges "Tuck into tuna, salmon and eggs or take vitamin D pills – official health advice".

    The headlines were prompted by new advice on vitamin D from Public Health England (PHE), which...

  • Chlamydia vaccine research 'shows early progress'

    "Could a nose spray prevent chlamydia?" asks the Daily Mail, one of several media outlets reporting on promising research to develop a vaccine for the sexually transmitted disease (STI).

    Canadian researchers found mice treated with an experimental vaccine given as a nasal spray fought off infection with a mouse variant of...

  • 'Walk or cycle to work to lose wieght', says study

    "Pedalling the pounds away: Why cycling could be the best way to lose weight," says The Daily Telegraph, reporting on a UK study comparing how different methods of commuting affected obesity levels.

    People who cycled to work typically had a lower body...

  • 'Nine out of 10 strokes preventable,' claims study

    "Nine out of 10 strokes preventable if people follow 10 health rules," The Daily Telegraph reports.

    The news comes from a large study that found the top 10 risk factors for stroke are preventable.

    The 10 main risk factors for stroke are:

    • high blood pressure
    • smoking
    • too...
  • Zika virus epidemic to last 'another three years'

    "Zika epidemic to last another three years as 'too late' to control it, say researchers," reports the Telegraph Online.

    A team of researchers at Imperial College London aimed to explore the dynamics of the current Zika epidemic in Latin America and used this data to calculate the potential future spread of the virus...

  • Obesity 'now a leading cause of death; especially in men'

    "Being overweight or obese puts men at a greater risk of dying prematurely than women," BBC News reports.

    A survey of global trends found obesity was now second only to smoking as a cause of premature death in Europe. A study of almost 4 million people from 32 countries showed that being overweight (as well as being...

  • Pomegranate compound 'could combat' complications of ageing

    "Pomegranates slow down the ageing process by prompting cells to recycle and rebuild themselves, a study shows," The Daily Telegraph reports. But before you rush to stock up on the "food of the gods", the study in question only involved worms and rodents.

    Compounds called urolithins are produced by bacteria in the...

  • 'Secret ginger gene' may increase skin cancer risk for millions

    "People can carry a 'silent' red hair gene that raises their risk of sun-related skin cancer, experts warn," BBC News reports.

    Research suggests that carrying just one copy of a variant of the MC1R gene (having two copies causes red hair) increases skin cancer risk, even for people without red hair.

    The variant is...

  • Pregnancy supplements 'don’t help, just take vit D and folic acid'

    "Pregnancy multivitamins are a waste of money because most mothers-to-be do not need them, according to researchers," BBC News reports.

    A new report found that only the use of vitamin D and folic acid in pregnancy was supported by the evidence. Whereas expensive multivitamin supplements (often costing around £15 for a month...

  • Thumb sucking and nail biting not key to preventing child allergies

    "Children who suck their thumbs and bite their nails suffer fewer allergies, study finds," The Daily Telegraph reports.

    Researchers have reported a link between these common childhood habits and a lower rate of positive allergy tests; with the important exceptions of ...

  • Could an obscure type of herpes virus trigger female infertility?

    "Obscure virus may be cause of unexplained infertility," The Independent reports.

    Italian researchers found copies of the HHV-6A virus – a type of herpes virus – in the womb lining of 43% of women with unexplained infertility compared to 0% in women with a history of successful pregnancy.

    This small study analysed...

  • 1 in 8 advanced prostate cancers may be linked to faulty genes

    "Nearly one in eight men who develop [advanced] prostate cancer carry mutations in genes which repair damage to DNA," The Daily Telegraph reports.

    One of the difficulties in detecting and treating prostate cancer is that some cancers...

  • Reduced antibiotic prescribing did not raise serious infection rates

    "Surgeries that handed out the fewest pills do not have higher rates of serious illnesses," the Daily Mail reports.

    A new study looked at the impact of prescribing patterns of antibiotics by GPs. The researchers were particularly...

  • Study finds link between saturated fats and early death

    "Eating more saturated fats raises risk of early death, says US study," The Guardian reports.

    A major study involving more than 80,000 women would seem to contradict recent high-profile reports that a diet rich in saturated fat is safe.

    The latest – a long-term study conducted in the US including more than 120,000...

  • Pasta-rich diet may 'prevent pounds from piling on', says study

    "Pasta DOESN'T make you fat – it actually helps weight loss," the Daily Mail reports. In the latest round of the nutrition wars, carbs are fighting back, with a study showing that a diet rich in pasta was linked to lower body mass index (BMI).

    The...

  • Paracetamol in pregnancy 'link to autism and ADHD' not proven

    "Women who take paracetamol during pregnancy 'risk having a child with autism or ADHD'," the Mail Online reports. But the Spanish study it reports on provides no evidence of a direct link to either condition.

    Researchers assessed paracetamol use in more than 2,000 pregnant women, and then performed various developmental and...

  • Many women think shaving pubic hair is 'hygienic'

    "More women think shaving pubic hair is 'hygenic' [sic] despite greater health risks," The Independent reports.

    A US survey found more than half of women who groomed their public hair did so for hygiene reasons, despite evidence that shaving pubic hair can make the vagina more vulnerable to irritation and infection.

    ...

  • 'Stop demonising butter,' say researchers

    "Butter has been wrongly 'demonised' as unhealthy," reports the Daily Express following the publication of a study that found eating butter did not increase the risk of heart disease, stroke and diabetes.

    Researchers analysed the findings from nine studies published since 2005 involving more than 600,000 participants from...

  • Sports drinks may have adverse effects on teens' dental health

    "High numbers of younger teenagers are risking tooth decay and obesity by regularly having high-sugar sport drinks," BBC News reports.

    A survey of Welsh teenagers found high levels of consumption in teens, who seem unaware of their high-sugar content.

    One hundred and sixty young teenagers completed a questionnaire...

  • Heart attacks linked to media statin reports ... reports media

    "Don't give up your statins: Experts say warnings that made patients stop taking vital drug have put lives at risk," the Daily Mail reports.

    This was the same newspaper that told us two weeks ago that "statins may be a waste of time", so you might be forgiven for being a little confused.

    In October 2013,...

  • Is 'Disney Princess culture' a bad influence on young girls?

    "Disney princesses such as Elsa from Frozen can damage young girls' body esteem," the Daily Mail reports – inaccurately.

    The study the news comes from actually found a more complex pattern of influences on both girls and boys.

    Disney Princesses™ – from Elsa all the way back to Snow White – have become both cultural...

  • Children's plastic toys can 'harbour viruses for hours'

    "Plastic toys 'can harbour nasty viruses for hours, raising risk of infection'," the Mail Online reports. New research suggests that enveloped viruses, which have a protective shell, may survive on toys for up to 24 hours.

    This laboratory study aimed to assess virus survival on a plastic toy at 22C and two different humidity...

  • Broccoli compounds may help combat chronic diseases

    "Eating broccoli could lower your risk of having coronary heart disease, type 2 diabetes and several types of cancer, a new study suggests," the Daily Mail reports.

    But there is little hard evidence to back up this claim – the study it reports on involved plants, not humans.

    Phenols, which are compounds found in...

  • Study suggests that inflammation is behind period pain

    "Scientists have finally discovered why periods hurt so much, following a ground-breaking study into menstrual pain," The Independent reports.

    A new study suggests that the pain is caused by acute inflammation, as measured by the C-reactive protein (CRP). CRP is a protein produced by the liver; its levels rise when there is...

  • Should we 'eat breakfast like a king and dinner like a pauper'?

    "We should 'eat breakfast like a king' to fight obesity, scientists claim," the Daily Mirror reports.

    The headline was prompted by a new review into "chrono-nutrition", which involves seeing if when we eat is as important as what we eat.

    The review suggests eating more of our total daily food intake in the...

  • Diabetes drugs may be useful for Alzheimer's, mice research finds

    "Drugs prescribed to treat diabetes could cure Alzheimer's disease" is the significantly over-hyped headline in The Daily Telegraph.

    What this new research actually found is that there seem to be shared biological processes between Alzheimer's and diabetes. But the study concerned did not look at treatments for the disease,...

  • Drugs, ginger and acupuncture 'best for morning sickness'

    "Hundreds of thousands of pregnant women with morning sickness should be given drugs to ease their symptoms," the Daily Mirror reports.

    The recommendation comes from a set of new guidelines that also say ginger and acupuncture can play a useful role in treating nausea and vomiting in pregnancy, better known as morning...

  • Almost half of all UK adults may be living with chronic pain

    "Almost half the adult population is living with chronic pain," the Daily Mail reports. A major new review suggests that around 28 million adults in the UK are affected by some type of chronic pain (pain that lasts for more than three months).

    The researchers...

  • Cranberry juice 'useful' for women with recurring UTIs, claims study

    "Drinking cranberry juice could reduce the worldwide use of antibiotics," is the somewhat optimistic headline in The Daily Telegraph.

    A new study found some modest preventative benefit in women with a history of reoccurring urinary...

  • 5:2 diet 'could play a role in preventing breast cancer'

    "Women who follow the 5:2 diet 'could reduce their risk of breast cancer','' the Mail Online reports.

    A small study found some women who followed the diet experienced breast cell changes thought to be protective against breast cancer....

  • Coffee's cancer risk downgraded (as long as you don't drink it hot)

    "Very hot drinks may cause cancer, but coffee does not, says WHO," The Guardian reports.

    A review by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) concluded that only beverages consumed at higher than 65C posed a possible cancer risk.

    The working group's report re-evaluated the cancer-causing properties of...

  • Brain scans find differences in 'badly behaved' teen boys

    "'Striking' structural differences seen in study which compared brain scans of young men with antisocial behavioural problems with their healthy peers," The Guardian reports.

    The results suggest these behavioural problems could have a neurological dimension.

    Researchers used brain scanning techniques to compare the...

  • Three servings of wholegrains a day 'cuts risk of early death'

    "Eating Weetabix for breakfast 'can slash your risk of dying early from any cause'," the Daily Mirror reports.

    A new study looking at wholegrain consumption (not just Weetabix) found a strong link between consumption and improved "long-term health and longevity" compared with people who ate little or no wholegrain...

  • Teens who vape e-cigs 'six times more likely to smoke cigarettes'

    "Vaping is a gateway to smoking," the Mail Online reports, seriously overstating the evidence of a new US study.

    While the study did find teens who experimented with e-cigs were more likely to smoke "traditional" tobacco products – mainly cigarettes – no direct link between the two was proven.

    Following a...

  • Study says there's no link between cholesterol and heart disease

    "Controversial report claims there's no link between 'bad cholesterol' and heart disease," the Daily Mail reports, while The Times states: "Bad cholesterol 'helps you live longer',".

    The headlines are based on a new review which aimed to gather evidence from previous observational studies on whether LDL...

  • Risky stem cell treatment 'halts progress of multiple sclerosis'

    "New treatment can 'halt' multiple sclerosis, says study," BBC News reports.

    The treatment involves effectively destroying the existing immune system and creating a new one using stem cells. But this new treatment carries a high risk of complications.

    ...

  • Should we rethink the causes of anorexia?

    "Anorexia is not about a fear of getting fat, but rather a pleasure at losing weight, experts reveal," says the Daily Mail. The headline oversimplifies the results of a study that looked at women's responses to photos of women of varying weights.

    In the study, 71 women with ...

  • Green tea extract 'boosts mental ability' in people with Down's

    "Down's syndrome can be treated with green tea," says The Daily Telegraph, rather optimistically.

    A Spanish study found some improvement in thinking abilities among people with Down's syndrome who took a supplement of green tea extract, and...

  • Depression blood test could lead to personalised treatments

    "UK scientists have developed a blood test to help doctors pick the best drug for patients with depression," BBC News reports, somewhat prematurely.

    It is currently unproven whether such a test, based on measuring inflammation, would improve treatment outcomes.

    Previous research has suggested high levels of...

  • Women are more likely to suffer from anxiety than men

    "Women twice as likely as men to experience anxiety, research finds," The Guardian reports. A new review that attempts to get a global snapshot of the prevalence of anxiety disorders identifies a number of vulnerable groups.

    There are various types of anxiety disorder, but generally they involve feelings of unease, such as...

  • Ten years of hormone breast cancer drugs 'may benefit some'

    "Taking hormonal drugs for up to 15 years reduces the risk of breast cancers coming back," BBC News reports.

    A new study looked at 1,918 postmenopausal women with what is known as oestrogen receptor-positive (or ER+) breast cancers...

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