From Unusual To Outrageous In Medicine

AssA collection of offbeat research and bizarre findings from the medical world in 2006:
– Beer aficionados rejoiced when a US survey of 9,000 men found that the amber ale may actually help prevent heart attacks.
– A Sydney emergency doctor called for hospitals to invest in heavy duty beds, hoists and even helicopters that can handle the weight of Australia’s ever expanding population of extremely obese people.
– A Brisbane study urged doctors to embrace Google to help diagnose tricky cases, proving that patients aren’t the only ones surfing the net for medical enlightenment.
– Husbands who accidentally take their wives’ medication and parents who double-dose their kids on painkillers thanks to “bad communication” were among the hundreds of medication errors reported to the Victorian Poisons Information Centre. “One poor lady ate a vaginal pessary instead of inserting it in the vagina which is rather unusual,” said researcher David Taylor.
– Contrary to movie mythology, having sex doesn’t increase your chances of a heart attack, according to a review by Sydney and Harvard academics. But snorting cocaine makes a seizure 20 times more likely.
– Melbourne researchers recommended that women trying to control a sudden and seemingly irrepressible desire to get to the bathroom curb the urge by vigorously scratching the back of their leg.
– US scientists designed a stethoscope that allows doctors to hear the sounds of the body over the noise of a Black Hawk helicopter. The new tool will be used to help treat wounded soldiers.
– A blind man has turned the rules of deja vu on their head by declaring that he too can experience the mystical sensation. Scientists had believed it to be a trick of the eye and unrelated to smell, noise or touch.
– Four US women were diagnosed with the rare paralytic illness botulism after being injected in the face with 40 times the recommended dose of the anti-wrinkle drug Botox. Meanwhile, Sydney doctors have found a novel new use for the toxin, injecting it into women’s wombs to relieve period pain.
– Research published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine warned that women who cycle regularly suffer “decreased genital sensation”. Scientists used non-invasive techniques to compare sensitivity in competitive bikers and runners.
– Caffeine might be the secret manipulator, according to Brisbane research showing that a person with a coffee in hand is more likely to say “yes”.
– A novel nip-and-tuck promotion was launched to entice Melburnians to get new breasts or a more delicate nose without having to part with cash up front.
– According to a New Zealand study of circumcision, boys who get the chop are twice as likely to avoid sexually transmitted infections than their peers who are au naturale.
Gay– Asthmatics with a passion for underwater sport can breathe easy thanks to a little bit of Queensland ingenuity – a snorkel fitted with an inhaler.
– Dogs may be the secret to health and happiness, according to a British study which shows owners are less likely to be lonely or depressed than those who are mutt-free.
– In the US, a 22-year-old woman died after an eating binge, sparking debate about the extremely rare but serious consequences of bulimia nervosa.
– Research into sexsomnia – making sexual advances toward another person while asleep – was hampered because sufferers were so embarrassed by their problem they wouldn’t own up to it.
– A British study into grumpiness has found that women are not only more likely than men to get out of the wrong side of bed in the morning – they stay in a bad mood for longer too.
– Doctors might improve their bedside manner by honing their creative writing skills, a Yale University study suggested.
– US researchers were disturbed to discover that diehard sports fans who suffer a medical emergency during their favourite game will delay going to hospital until the final whistle blows.
– A Wellington study of spanking suggested that children who are hit with an open hand had “similar or slightly better outcomes” as adults than those who weren’t spanked.
– Chinese surgeons who performed the world’s first penis transplant had to remove the new organ after the recipient and his wife developed severe psychological problems.
– Brain scans on a woman lying in a vegetative state in a US hospital for five months appeared to show that she was imagining playing tennis.
– Investigations revealed that women can be allergic to their partner’s sperm. No one has died from a semen reaction yet, but several have required hospitalisation for breathing difficulties, hives and swelling.
– According to a Canadian study, the last male child in a family of many boys is more likely to be gay than a first born boy or one with fewer brothers.
– In Britain, a team concluded that penetrative sex effectively calms a nervous public speaker before they take the stage, but oral sex and masturbation are less helpful.
– Venezuelan scientists designed fart-free baked beans that allow diners to tuck in without the explosive results.
from The Age

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