The Health News – 5 April 2017

Overview:

• Being overweight during the first trimester of pregnancy has been linked to an increased risk of childhood epilepsy. The recent Swedish study, published in journal JAMA Neurology, of almost 1.5 million babies found the risk of epilepsy almost doubled from normal-weight women to very severely obese women

• Health Minister Roger Cook said the most recent test results he had seen showed lead was still present in parts of the hospital where children will be treated, but hailed John Holland’s practical completion claim as the start of “an exciting part of the process”. The terms of the contract require the lead issue, which has mystified officials since it was discovered last year, to be fixed before practical completion can be accepted.

• Children exposed to CT scans have a higher-than-previously-thought risk of developing cancer, according to research. A fresh analysis of 2013 research is being presented by researchers from the University of Melbourne at the World Congress of Public Health in Melbourne. The results indicated that most of the excess cancers occurring more than two years after a CT scan were caused by radiation from the scan.

News on Health Professional Radio. Today is the  5th of April 2017. Read by Rebecca Foster. Health News

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-04-04/obesity-during-pregnancy-increases-risk-of-epilepsy-in-child/8414518

A study of more than a million children has found the risk of epilepsy almost doubled among those born to severely obese mums.

Being overweight during the first trimester of pregnancy has been linked to an increased risk of childhood epilepsy.

The recent Swedish study, published in journal JAMA Neurology, of almost 1.5 million babies found the risk of epilepsy almost doubled from normal-weight women to very severely obese women.

Epilepsy disrupts the normal electrochemical activity of the brain resulting seizures.

The cause of this debilitating and often hard-to-treat condition is poorly understood.

With obesity on the rise, there is growing concern about the long-term neurological effects of children exposed to maternal obesity in pregnancy.

Researchers at the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm studied live-births in Sweden between 1997 and 2011. Of those they studied, there were 7,592 babies, or 0.5 per cent, diagnosed with epilepsy.

The risk of epilepsy increased by 11 per cent among those born to overweight mothers — those with a body mass index of 25-29 — compared with children of normal-weight mothers.

Instead, Dr White believes getting a better understanding of the cause of obesity and epilepsy could lead to finding other ways of trying to break the link, rather than telling women they need to lose weight.

Currently, obese women face obstacles in getting IVF treatment because doctors are advised not to provide the treatment to obese women because of numerous risks for the mother and baby.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-04-04/confusion-over-opening-of-perth-childrens-hospital/8415240

Confusion surrounds the status of the Perth Children’s Hospital project, with the head contractor claiming to have finished construction of the $1.2 billion facility, but the Health Minister admitting he still does not know the source of lead contamination in the water supply.

Contractor John Holland claims to have achieved “practical completion” of the heavily-delayed hospital.

… Health Minister Roger Cook said the most recent test results he had seen showed lead was still present in parts of the hospital where children will be treated, but hailed John Holland’s practical completion claim as the start of “an exciting part of the process”.

The terms of the contract require the lead issue, which has mystified officials since it was discovered last year, to be fixed before practical completion can be accepted.

The Minister admitted, if John Holland attempted to hand back the hospital without resolving the lead problem, a legal stoush between the contractor and the Government would eventuate.

The hospital had been due to open nearly 18 months ago, but a string of construction problems have led to mounting costs and indefinite delays.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-04-04/ct-scan-exposure-increase-risk-of-cancer-for-kids-research-shows/8413478

Children exposed to CT scans have a higher-than-previously-thought risk of developing cancer, according to research.

CT scans are used by doctors to get to the core of a problem by creating a 3D image of the most inaccessible nooks of the body.

But the beams of ionising radiation can cause cellular damage.

A fresh analysis of 2013 research is being presented by researchers from the University of Melbourne at the World Congress of Public Health in Melbourne.

They said the radiation risk was much greater than previously acknowledged.

The results indicated that most of the excess cancers occurring more than two years after a CT scan were caused by radiation from the scan.

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