Identifying severity of osteoarthritis
Watch for a new grading scale to measure the severity of osteoarthritis in patients. Called OA-COM (which stands for Osteoarthritis—Cartilage, Osteophytes, Menisci) it uses Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). The OA-COM grading scale will allow research to be conducted within very early or late-stage osteoarthritis, and enable researchers to make conclusions about fine differences among osteoarthritis patients, which other scoring systems/x-ray-based tools do not.
Source: Arthritis Research Canada
A stretchable skin patch measures heart rate
Researchers at the Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology (SAIT) have integrated a stretchable organic LED (OLED) display and a photoplethysmography (PPG) sensor in a single prototype device to measure and display a user’s heart rate in real-time.
By attaching it to a user’s inner wrist near the radial artery where a pulse is usually checked heart rate can be measured without performance degradation from wrist movement with the solution operating normally even if elongated up to 30 per cent. The sensor and OLED display “continued to work stably” even after being stretched a thousand times. Moreover, the sensor picked up a heartbeat signal “2.4 times stronger” than hat would be picked up by a fixed silicon sensor.
Canada ranks 43rd on women’s health
The Hologic Global Women’s Health Index identifies discrepancies in perceptions related to Canadian women’s well-being putting us 43rd out of 116 participants. Explanations for this poor rating include:
• 81 per cent of women view domestic violence as widespread vs. 58 per cent of men. This is one of the largest gender gaps among high-income countries on the subject.
• Canadian women feel sad more often and are significantly more likely in 2020 than in 2019 to say they felt sad for much of the previous day—36 per cent vs. 26 per cent. Not so for men.
• About one-third of Canadian women with a high school education or less (32 per cent) and 15 per cent with bachelor degrees say health problems hold them back compared to their peers without health problems.
• Only 24 per cent of Canadian women aged 50 to 74 say they have been tested for cancer in the past year—lower than the 33 per cent to 50 per cent expected by national guidelines.
• High-income women are most likely satisfied with health care availability, with the wealthiest 20 per cent most likely to be satisfied.
Source: Hologic Global Women’s Health Index
Fight-or-flight response altered
New research found that otherwise healthy young people recently diagnosed with COVID-19, regardless of their symptom severity, ended up with underactive or overactive sympathetic nervous systems. These results are especially important given the emerging evidence of symptoms like racing hearts reported in conjunction with “long-COVID.”
Source: The Journal of Physiology
De-cluttering vs. dementia
A clutter-free environment may not help people with dementia carry out daily tasks according to a new study from the University of East Anglia. The study aimed to figure out whether people with dementia were better able to carry out tasks, such as making a cup of tea, at home—surrounded by their usual clutter, or in a clutter-free environment.
Surprisingly, participants with moderate dementia performed better when surrounded by their usual clutter. But, different environments made no difference to people with mild and severe dementia, who were able to perform at the same level in both settings.
Prof. Eneida Mioshi, from UEA’s School of Health Sciences, said: “The majority of people with dementia usually want to remain living at home for as long as possible. “It is really important to know how they can be best supported.”
Source: Alzheimer Disease and Associated Disorders (ADAD)