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News on Health & Science

San Francisco Circumcision Ban Struck From Ballot

A San Francisco judge has struck a proposed male circumcision ban from a November ballot, ruling that the city cannot regulate medical procedure and citing religious freedom protections

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The ruling was applauded by opponents of the proposed ban, who attacked it as anti-Semitic and anti-Muslim.

In May, advocates of a ban gathered enough voter signatures to put the measure on the city’s ballot.

They described the sacred rite for Jews and Muslims as “genital mutilation”.

The measure, which qualified in May for a spot on the ballot, would have made circumcision of a minor boy punishable by up to a year in jail and a $1,000 (£612) fine.

The US federal government already bans female circumcision.

Jewish and Muslim groups said the proposal was an assault on their ancient religious practice and likened the proposal to circumcision bans in the Soviet Union.

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Source :BBC NEWS : 28 July 2011

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Ailmemts & Remedies Pediatric

Hypospadias

Definition:
Hypospadias is a birth defect found in boys in which the penile meatus is not at the tip of the penis. The meatus is the term for the opening of the penis through which urine normally exits the bladder. The incidence is reported to be 1 in 300 live male births. There is some family risk of hypospadias, as familial tendencies have been noted. Up to 14% of male siblings are affected.

Hypospadias is usually classified according to the location of the opening. As the defect increases in severity, the opening to the penis will be found further back on the penis. The most severe types can have openings at the region of the scrotum and even in the perineum (the region between the anus and scrotum).

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In some men with hypospadias, there’s another abnormality called chordee, in which the penis curves downwards and the foreskin only covers the front of it.In the most severe forms of hypospadias, the urethral opening is so far back it’s almost in the scrotum. The scrotum itself may be small and the testes may not have descended (that is, they’re still deep in the abdomen). When babies are born like this, it can be difficult to work out which sex they are without further tests.

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Both hypospadias and chordee must be repaired so that a child can have normal urinary and reproductive health.

Symptoms:
Hypospadias is a structural abnormality that doesn’t progress or put the man at risk of any other serious illness. However, as with any abnormalities of the urinary system, there may be an increased risk of urinary infection in more severe cases.

Hypospadias may cause emotional turmoil when a boy realises he’s different from his friends. It can also cause practical problems with passing urine (those with the condition usually have to sit down to pee) and later with sexual intercourse, which may be embarrassing or difficult to cope with. Hypospadias may cause general worries about sexuality and fertility.

Signs and symptoms of hypospadias may include:

*Opening of the urethra at a location other than the tip of the penis
*Downward curve of the penis (chordee)
*Hooded appearance of the penis because only the top half of the penis is covered by foreskin
*Abnormal spraying during urination

Causes:
Hypospadias is present at birth (congenital). The exact reason this defect occurs is unknown. Sometimes hypospadias is inherited.

As the penis develops in a male fetus, certain hormones stimulate the formation of the urethra and foreskin. Hypospadias results when a malfunction occurs in the action of these hormones, causing the urethra to develop abnormally.

As a boy is developing in utero, the penis begins to form in the sixth week of fetal life. Two folds of tissue join each other in the middle and a hollow tube is formed in the middle of the future penis. This tube is the urethra and its opening is called the penile meatus. As the skin folds develop to form the penis, any interruption in this process leads to the meatus being located in a location further from the end of the penis. The exact etiology for this premature cessation of urethral formation is poorly understood. In addition, the etiology of the often-associated abnormal downward curvature (chordee) is also poorly understood.

Risk Factors:
This condition is more common in infants with a family history of hypospadias.

Some research suggests that there may be an increased risk of hypospadias in infant males born to women of an advanced age or those who used in vitro fertilization (IVF) to conceive. The connection to IVF may be due to the mother’s exposure to progesterone, a natural hormone, or to progestin, a synthetic form of progesterone, administered during the IVF process. Other research, however, hasn’t confirmed a link between IVF and hypospadias, but did find an association between a mother’s exposure to pesticides and hypospadias.

Diagnosis:
A physical examination can diagnose this condition. Imaging tests may be needed to look for other congenital defects.

Treatment
The treatment of hypospadias is always surgical. Initially when the child is born and hypospadias is identified, it is important to delay any thoughts of circumcision until seen by a urologist. This is because the foreskin can provide essential additional skin needed to reconstruct the urethra.

Hypospadias is often repaired  before a child is one year of age. This way, the boy is in diapers and management of dressings are made easier. However, the exact age of repair can vary according to the size of the penis and severity of the defect. It can be repaired in most of the  cases with a single operation, but on occasion, a second operation may be needed. The operation is performed under general anesthesia with the child completely asleep. Most of the boys will have a small tube exiting the tip of their new meatus. This “stent” will protect the new urethra and allow for adequate healing. Most patients leave the hospital the same day or the following day. However, more complex repairs for the more severe types of hypospadias can require longer hospital stays due to the need for bedrest and immobilization in the immediate post-operative setting.


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The exact type of operation employed varies according to the severity of the defect. For the more distal defects that have openings closer to the normal position at the end of the penis, a new tube can be created from the surrounding skin. This creation of a tube is known as a Thiersch-Duplay repair. For more severe defects, the options range. Additional hairless skin is often needed to recreate the urethral tube when longer defects are seen. Here, the subdermal skin of the foreskin can be used. For the most severe defects, we can remove mucosal skin from the inside of the cheek or use subdermal skin from other hairless parts of the body. It is important to use hairless skin as future hair growth in the neourethra can present multiple problems.

Complications:
The usual risks of surgery are present at the time of performing  hypospadias repairs. Risk of infection is controlled with use of antibiotics with the surgery and in the post-operative setting. Bleeding is well controlled by using a penile tourniquet during the operation. This limits the blood loss to a very minimal amount, while allowing for good visualization of the tissues for the surgeon.

By using good surgical techniques   the longer-term complications of the surgery are minimised. The most common problems that present are fistula and stricture. A fistula occurs if a hole develops along the pathway of the repair proximal to the tip of the penis. In other words, a hole can develop along the underside of the penis allowing for leakage of urine. Additionally, a stricture is a scar that can form causing a narrowing in the urethra. If either of these complications occur, an additional repair will be needed usually 6 months later

Prognosis:
Results after surgery are typically good. In some cases, more surgery is needed to correct fistulas or a return of the abnormal penis curve.

Disclaimer: This information is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advise or help. It is always best to consult with a Physician about serious health concerns. This information is in no way intended to diagnose or prescribe remedies.This is purely for educational purpose

Resources:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/health/physical_health/conditions/hypospadias.shtml
http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/001286.htm
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/hypospadias/DS00884
http://www.cornellurology.com/pediatrics/hypospadias.shtml

http://www.medindia.net/patients/paediatrics/Hypospadias.htm

http://www.surgeryencyclopedia.com/Fi-La/Hypospadias-Repair.html

http://www.adhb.govt.nz/newborn/Guidelines/Anomalies/Hypospadias.htm

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News on Health & Science

‘Circumcision Doesn’t Cut HIV Risk’

There is not enough evidence to show that circumcision reduces the risk of AIDS in sex between men, researchers are reporting, even though previous studies in Africa have shown its pronounced benefit in reducing AIDS from heterosexual sex.

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“Over all, we’re not finding a protective effect associated with circumcision for gay and bisexual men,” said Gregorio A Millett of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the lead author of a report that appears Wednesday in The Journal of the American Medical Association.

The researchers based their conclusions on a review of 15 studies involving 53,567 gay and bisexual men in eight countries, including the United States, where nearly half of the 1.1 million people infected with the AIDS virus are men who have sex with men.

Circumcised men were 14 percent less likely to be infected with the human immunodeficiency virus, or HIV, than those who were uncircumcised, but the finding was not statistically significant, the researchers said.

Sources: The Times Of India

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Health Quaries

Some Health Quaries & Answers

Towering disturbance:-…....CLICK & SEE

Q: I own a flat on the third (top) floor of a building. The residents’ association has leased out the terrace to a cell phone company which has erected a tower there. I have a pacemaker and am worried about the impact of the signals from the tower on my heart. What should I do?

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A: Signals from microwaves and cell phones do affect pacemakers. Irregularities in the heart rate have been noticed when a phone is held even 15cm away from the pacemaker. When you are living just under a phone tower, the signal is likely to be strong and powerful. The first symptoms of the pacemaker being affected are a feeling of faintness and irregularity in your pulse rate. You can be fitted with a 24-hour monitoring device by your cardiologist. This will document any irregularity, so you know it is real and not psychological.

If there are any changes, it may make sense to move. Your building association is unlikely to cancel a financially lucrative enterprise and get the tower relocated.

Circumcise to protect:-

Q: I read that circumcision offers protection against AIDS. I wonder if I should get my one-year-old son circumcised.

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A: Circumcision is a surgical procedure that involves removal of the skin and mucosal tissue that covers the glans, the tip of the penis. Circumcision is unconditionally practised by Jews and Muslims. It is a part of their religious culture. In others it is usually performed if the foreskin gets stuck (phimosis) or infected. It does help in the prevention of AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases. But it does not give 100 per cent protection.

All operations can have complications. Problems like infection or bleeding, though rare, can arise after the surgery. Unless your son’s paediatrician has advised circumcision for a particular reason, it does not make sense to put him through elective surgery. When he is older, teaching him about responsibility, sexual norms and safe sex may be a better option.

Yellow vs white:-

Q: There are natural and “artificial” eggs available in the market. The colour of the yolk in the two differs. Is there a difference in their nutritive values? Is eating eggs healthy?

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A: Eggs contain easily digestible proteins, fats, vitamins and antioxidants. They are a complete food in themselves. The recommended intake is one egg a day for those with a normal lipid profile (cholesterol and triglycerides). If the lipids are raised, cutting down on yolks to a maximum of two per week would be fine. Egg whites do not add to the cholesterol level, and you can eat as many of these as you like.

The colour of the yolk only depends on the type of feed the hen has received. It does not affect the egg’s nutritive value. By natural eggs, I think you mean those laid by hens that roam free, and by “artificial” the ones that are laid in hatcheries. Nutrition-wise, both are the same.

Music mania:-

Q: My daughter listens to music the whole day. I don’t like it, but do not want to put a stop to it unless it is harmful.

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A: If your daughter is listening to music instead of doing her homework or studying, perhaps you need to interfere. But do check her academic performance first. Listening to music does have many positive effects. It soothes, pacifies and relieves tension in children and in adults. Music during exercise provides a cognitive boost, in addition to the other benefits of regular activity. Loud music, on the other hand, can damage hearing, increase the heart rate and produce paradoxical excitement.

Unequal feet:

Q: My shoes never fit both the feet perfectly. One is always a little loose or tight.

A: A person’s feet may not be identical in shape and size. One is usually marginally larger than the other. If this difference is marked, footwear will never fit properly. It is better to buy a bigger size and wear two socks on the foot that is smaller. Otherwise, you have to buy two pairs of shoes.

Cauliflower ear:

Q: I pierced my ear in the upper part, in addition to the ear lobe. It has become red, swollen and painful. My ear now looks ugly and deformed. What should I do?

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A: The condition you are describing is called “cauliflower ear”. It occurs when a blood clot develops in the cartilage of the ear as a result of injury. The accumulated blood becomes infected and this destroys the cartilage, making it shrunken and shrivelled.

As soon as there is pain and swelling owing to an injury (even piercing), it should be treated with ice packs and antibiotics. Once it becomes misshapen, cosmetic reconstruction by a plastic surgeon is the only option.

Sources: The Telegraph (Kolkata, India)

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