Author: vulgavis

Communities make the difference: World AIDS Day 2019

© chuwy / iStock This year’s theme for World AIDS Day recognizes the vital role of communities in supporting and educating at a local level, helping to deliver services at a regional level and raising awareness at a global level. This blog highlights research registered at the ISRCTN registry that investigates how to harness community power to reduce transmission of HIV and improve the wellbeing of people living with HIV/AIDS. Targeting gender inequality to improve health In many regions, lack of education and resources are linked to increased rates of early marriage and childbearing, gender-based violence, condomless intercourse and...

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Your DNA may underlie the severity of your concussion symptoms

Contact sports could put athletes at risk of mild Traumatic Brain Injuries, but some are more resilient to the effects than others – gilaxia / iStock Each year, approximately 10 million individuals experience traumatic brain injury (TBI), with a vast majority of these injuries classified as mild TBIs (mTBIs). Commonly referred to as concussions, mTBIs can sometimes result in a wide array of symptoms including headaches, fatigue, anxiety, depression, and difficulties with memory and attention. Chronic exposure to mTBI has been associated with an increased risk of neurodegenerative disease later in life, however this is not necessarily a definite...

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Highlights of the BMC series: October 2019

BMC Health Services Research – Cry for health: a quantitative evaluation of a hospital-based advocacy intervention for domestic violence and abuse A study published in BMC Health Services Research shows that locating Independent Domestic Violence Advisors (IDVAs) in hospitals is an effective  response to domestic violence and abuse (DVA). DVA includes a range of types of abuse, including, but not limited to, physical, psychological, financial, sexual or emotional abuse. DVA can have severe health consequences, with survivors at higher risk of experiencing anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, loss of trust, suicidal behaviours and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Halliwell et al....

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World’s largest rodent and its role in the emergence of Brazilian spotted fever

Cabybara. Photo from https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Hydrochoeris_hydrochaeris#/media/File:Capybara_(Hydrochoerus_hydrochaeris).JPG The Amazon rainforest made headlines this summer as large sections were burning, but deforestation in this unique ecosystem has been occurring steadily for decades. While forest loss reduces the important carbon sink, deforestation has been linked to increases in disease, most notably malaria, but also other vector-borne diseases. Deforestation in the Amazon. Image from NASA Earth Observatory Brazilian spotted fever (BSF), a disease that is caused by a bacteria (Rickettsia rickettsii) and transmitted by ticks, has also been linked to deforestation. In North America, the disease is known as Rocky Mountain spotted fever (RMSF) –...

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Can Twitter be used for Hay Fever surveillance purposes? Deep Learning application for relevant knowledge extraction

Social Media platforms, primarily used for networking, also serve as an invaluable source of knowledge on variety of topics, including health of the population. Such knowledge can be effectively utilised by healthcare professionals and decision makers if the appropriate techniques are employed to deal with high-volume, high-velocity, high-variety, and often arguable veracity user-generated content online. In a research article, published this month in BMC Medical Informatics and Decision Making, the authors aimed to investigate the potential of Twitter data for Hay Fever surveillance purposes and validate the effectiveness of relevant content curation using state-of-the-art Deep Learning models. Why health...

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