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Also in the press

Hypnosis as a therapeutic aid, “huge cost of ageing populations”, and antibiotics in animals

OnMedica Staff

Thursday, 12 April 2012

HYPNOSIS AS A THERAPEUTIC AID

The Wall Street Journal (p33) explores the benefits of hypnosis as a therapeutic aid for some patients.

The paper acknowledges: “The mechanism may be similar to the placebo effect- in which patients’ expectations play a major role in how they feel. Hypnosis, in turn, can help patients adjust those expectations to minimise pain, fear and disability.”

Even so the paper says: “Scientific evidence is mounting that hypnosis can be effective in a variety of medical situations, from easing migraine headaches to lowering blood pressure, controlling asthma attacks, minimising hot flushes and diminishing side effects from chemotherapy.

“Last week, two studies from Sweden found that one hour a week of hypnotherapy for 12 weeks eased symptoms of irritable-bowel syndrome in 40% of patients (compared with 12% in a control group) and that the positive effects can last as long as seven years.”

“HUGE COST OF AGEING POPULATIONS”

Several newspapers focus on the International Monetary Fund’s warning that governments must do more to reduce the cost of an ageing population, and a few papers have taken a pensions angle on the story,

Only The Times (p34) mentions that life expectancy has increased because of medical advances, such as improved treatment for cancer and HIV/Aids.

ANTIBIOTICS IN ANIMALS

The Wall Street Journal (p8) reports that the U.S. Food and Administration (FDA) said on Wednesday that farmers need to reduce their use of antibiotics in swine, cattle and poultry to keep the drugs from becoming ineffective against human infections.

The FDA said the practice has to be “phased out”, but it left it to the drug and livestock industries to comply voluntarily.

FDA deputy commissioner of foods, Michael Taylor, said: “We know that the widespread use of antibiotics can contribute to antimicrobial resistance, which has public-health consequences,” quotes the paper.

The WSJ says: “The drop in antibiotic resistance after the drugs stop being used for growth promotion will be substantial, said Bill Flynn, a FDA deputy director.”

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