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IPad to the rescue of hospital nurses

(China Daily)
Updated: 2011-01-26 07:57
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IPad to the rescue of hospital nurses

Apple's innovative iPad is being used as a mobile nursing station at the 309 Hospital of Chinese People's Liberation Army in Beijing, founded in 1958.

The iPad device shows procedures for surgical operations, is used to check X-rays and electrocardiograms (ECG) and monitor the condition of patients. It has become an assistant for nurses, in particular, at the country's first hospital to introduce the iPad.

Feedback from nurses in the tuberculosis department at the hospital, indicates the iPad has advantages compared to traditional computer management.

The high definition screen is great for viewing medical pictures and accessing patient details; a 10-hour battery capacity is sufficient for an average day's work; its portable at just 0.7 kg; and saves nurses from having to go from patients to a computer terminal.

The hospital has connected its iPads with the central database and Wi-Fi network, but it does not affect other sensitive electronic equipment.

Surgeons in Japan are using iPad as a surgery assistant, which helps them to accurately determine the position of blood vessels and organs during the operation; while Australia's state government has launched a $500,000 pilot project that used iPad for hospital treatment.

Pollution up where smokers congregate

Smoke-free offices may safeguard employees' health but they might also jeopardize the well being of passers-by outside, according to a Hong Kong survey.

The air quality around buildings where workers go outside to have a smoke is three times as poor as it is outside other offices where there are no smokers, the study finds.

Researchers from the Ontario Tobacco Research Unit in Canada measured pollution levels outside dozens of Hong Kong office blocks, according to the survey.

They found pollution levels were more than three times higher outside buildings where up to four people smoked within nine meters of the entrance compared with a building where no smokers gathered.

The density of air pollutants outside office blocks with smokers was 20 times higher than the World Health Organization guidelines for clean air, the survey shows.

Researcher Pamela Kaufman says Hong Kong should ban smoking within nine meters of building entrances. "Even short-term exposure (to smoke) can result in adverse health effects," she says.

Cut evening carbs to lose weight

Cutting down on carbohydrates in the evening can help in losing weight, notes Anika Brieske, a home economist at the BSA Academy in Saarbruecken, a German higher education institution responsible for health management and illness prevention.

Foods rich in carbohydrates include bread, rolls, noodles, rice, potatoes, crisps and sweets.

"With a reduced carbohydrate diet, the body needs less insulin, a hormone that plays a decisive role in breaking down carbohydrates in the body," Brieske says. The result: Less dietary fat is deposited in the body and fat burning is not inhibited, which is particularly important at night.

Brieske recommends evening meals consisting, for example, of a salad with feta or strips of chicken, vegetables au gratin with cheese, a vegetable soup, or meat and fish with a vegetable side dish.

Strep infections call for urgent attention

When a child suddenly gets a sore throat and coated tonsils and tongue in late winter or spring, streptococci are often the culprits.

"Streptococci are bacteria that can damage the kidneys and heart. So a physician must treat the child promptly with an antibiotic," advises Ulrich Fegeler, national spokesman for Germany's Professional Association of Children's and Young People's Physicians.

A rapid antigen test on a throat swap can diagnose strep throat with certainty. "If the child doesn't feel better after taking the antibiotic for two days, parents should contact the doctor again," Fegeler says.

Warning signals of a streptococci infection are a palate inflamed to a scarlet red, tonsils with whitish patches and swollen lymph glands in the neck.

Streptococci are the cause of nearly a quarter of all inflamed throats in children, who tend to become infected between the ages of 5 and 11.

"Warm liquids like soups and tea ease the symptoms," Fegeler says. Orange juice, grapefruit juice, lemonade and other acidic beverages could aggravate the sore throat, however.

China Daily-DPA

(China Daily 01/26/2011 page19)

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