Health and Medical News and Resources

General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

[News release] Infections can affect your IQ

From the 21 May 2015 Aarhaus news release

New research shows that infections can impair your cognitive ability measured on an IQ scale. The study is the largest of its kind to date, and it shows a clear correlation between infection levels and impaired cognition.

“Infections can affect the brain directly, but also through peripheral inflammation, which affects the brain and our mental capacity. Infections have previously been associated with both depression and schizophrenia, and it has also been proven to affect the cognitive ability of patients suffering from dementia. This is the first major study to suggest that infections can also affect the brain and the cognitive ability in healthy individuals.”

“We can see that the brain is affected by all types of infections. Therefore, it is important that more research is conducted into the mechanisms which lie behind the connection between a person’s immune system and mental health,” says Michael Eriksen Benrós.

He hopes that learning more about this connection will help to prevent the impairment of people’s mental health and improve future treatment.

May 22, 2015 Posted by | Psychiatry | , , , , | Leave a comment

Hospital delirium: not as negligible as previously thought

 

University of NE Medical Center in midtown Omaha

University of NE Medical Center in midtown Omaha (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

My sister, a nurse practitioner, posted this on Facebook. Something to keep in mind if you have a loved one in ICU..

 

From the 6 August article at Nebraska Live Well

 

Medical professionals once thought patient delirium was a benign byproduct of landing in an intensive care unit.

Now they know otherwise.

Delirium caused by medications, illness and other sources can lead to permanent confusion and death, say experts in ICU delirium.

The Nebraska Medical Center has tested a new set of strategies to combat and diminish hospital delirium. Although the results haven’t been compiled yet, scientists and medical practitioners hope the protocol will make a difference in patients’ conditions in the hospital and after release.

We used to think it just goes away,” Michele Balas, a faculty member at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, said of delirium. Balas, whose doctorate is in nursing, has overseen the research.

Delirium can affect people for the rest of their lives, she said, and may cause depression, memory loss and post-traumatic stress disorder, and affect the cognitive functions required for such simple tasks as balancing a checkbook or following a recipe.

Sedation, sometimes used when patients are on ventilators or are delirious, makes it impossible for them to regain alertness and get up, Balas said. Prolonged bed rest can cause pneumonia and blood clots,

The strategy, called ABCDE, involves getting patients off sedation as soon as possible (Awakening); removing them from ventilators for at least a while so they breathe on their own (Breathing); communication and coordination (C) among doctors, nurses and others; delirium monitoring by staffers (D); and early mobility (E), or getting them up and moving as soon as possible, even patients on ventilators

 

 

 

 

August 8, 2012 Posted by | health care | , , | Leave a comment

   

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