The Health News – 15 February 2017

• People, even if untrained, are being urged to use defibrillators to save lives in the case of cardiac arrest.  Imelda Lynch, chief executive of Heart Foundation, says defibrillating someone in the first few minutes of a heart attack increases their survival rate..

• The use of crystal methamphetamine or ice is growing. The State Government issues changes to the law
and the police is keen to get more search powers without a warrant.

• A research shows that the muscle pains experienced during the first strenuous workout in months are part of the body’s protective mechanism preventing people from damaging themselves.

News on Health Professional Radio. Today is the  15th of February 2017. Read by Rebecca Foster. Health News

Emergency defibrillators are being installed in Adelaide’s CBD as part of a $25,000 trial to save lives in the case of cardiac arrest.

People are being urged to use the machines, even if they are untrained, with the Heart Foundation saying they are “completely safe to use”.

A number of defibrillators will be located in Rundle Mall and Victoria Square.

The City Council already has defibrillators for use by staff at Adelaide Aquatic Centre, the Town Hall, Central Market and its golf links.

Heart Foundation chief executive Imelda Lynch said the first few minutes of a heart attack were critical to a person’s survival.

“If you defibrillate somebody who is having a cardiac arrest within the first five minutes you have a 90 per cent chance of success and survival rates,” she said.

The machines come with recorded verbal instructions.

Previously, defibrillators have been kept on business premises, making them inaccessible outside of office hours.

As part of the trial, these defibrillators will be placed in more public locations.

Heart disease is the leading cause of death across Australia and Ms Lynch said women especially underestimated its prevalence.

Councillor Martin is pushing for the trial, if successful, to be rolled out across Adelaide.

“At just $2,000 dollars a machine it is cheaper than the cost of hospitalising people, and it’s much cheaper than a funeral,” he said.

A taskforce to help tackle growing use of crystal methamphetamine, or ice, is being established in South Australia, as the State Government flags changes to the law and more drug-driving testing, and police urge officers be given greater search powers.

A wastewater analysis revealed ice use in South Australia had tripled in the past four years.

Authorities said an urgent crisis had developed involving the highly addictive and dangerous drug.

South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill said the taskforce would help guide urgent changes to laws and treatment services.

She said the state taskforce would coordinate its work with a national one which was announced in 2015.

Part of the promised rapid response from the taskforce is expected to involve recommending changes to legislation, across drug supply, prevention and treatment options and community education.

Mr Weatherill said the Government already had been considering sentencing changes for crimes involving indoor hydroponics and clandestine drug laboratories, a boost in drug-driving tests, more drug surveillance operations and increasing the numbers of specialist drug and alcohol clinicians in the state’s regional areas.

Police are also keen to get more powers to search people or premises without a warrant.

The taskforce is to present recommendations to the Government by May, the Premier said, so they can be considered in the context of next financial year’s state budget.

The aches and pains in our muscles following that first strenuous workout in months is perfectly normal for anyone unaccustomed to exercise, Queensland researchers say.

New research by a team at University of Queensland (UQ), led by muscle physiologist Dr Bradley Launikonis, found it was part of a protective mechanism stopping people from damaging themselves in the days following exercise.

In the world-first study, Dr Launikonis’s team have mapped muscle fibres from thigh biopsies at three points in the exercise cycle.

“It tells us human muscles are very adaptive and can protect themselves.

“It means to all of us when you damage your muscles, your muscles know.”

The study saw participants carry out a series of heavy weight-bearing leg exercises.

The researchers found how calcium built in the body while it was exerting energy and later dissolved, allowing muscles to repair and cope with the next workout.

Dr Launikonis said vacuoles then disappeared until the next round of strenuous exercise occurred.

“Prior to this, no-one had any idea this mechanism was happening,” he said.

The UQ team hoped its results would help better understand muscle wasting diseases like muscular dystrophy, however more research is needed.

Liked it? Take a second to support healthprofessionalradio on Patreon!