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Acupuncture for those with mystery illnesses

One in five patients has symptoms, which are undiagnosed by medicine. A research team from the Institute of Health Services Research, Peninsula Medical School, University of Exeter, carried out a randomised control trial and a linked interview study regarding 80 such patients from GP practices across London, to investigate their experiences of having five-element acupuncture added to their usual care.

They found that acupuncture had a significant and sustained benefit for these patients and consequently acupuncture could be safely added to the therapies used by practitioners when treating frequently attending patients with medically unexplained symptoms.

Dr Charlotte Paterson, who managed the randomised control trial and the longitudinal study of patients’ experiences, commented: “Our research indicates that the addition of up to 12 five-element acupuncture consultations to the usual care experienced by the patients in the trial was feasible and acceptable and resulted in improved overall well-being that was sustained for up to a year.”

Cheapest sunscreens are the best for your skin

Nothing can be better than this — cheapest and yet the best.
A new study has found that the cheapest sunscreens are better at protecting you from the sun than the more expensive ones.

‘Consumer Reports’, an American magazine, tested 22 major brands and found that in general the less you spend, the better quality the cream is.
It concluded that the most effective were the creams which cost the equivalent of less than 88 cents per ounce.

For example, La Roche-Posay sunscreen that typically sells for $24 was not as powerful as No-Ad, which retails at $7 — less than a third of the price.
Overall the three best buys were among the cheapest: for an SPF of 30 Up and Up Sport was voted the best, which it sells for as little as $5. For an SPF of 45 No-Ad with Aloe and Vitamin E was the best whilst at 50 SPF Equate Baby came tops. The cream sells for around $5.

Microwave treatment may end cornea transplants

Those hundreds of patients, who suffer from cornea problems, can happily bid goodbye to transplants.

In a new treatment specialists are using microwave probe to heat the cornea to around 60 degree Celsius, a procedure that corrects rugby-ball eye — the abnormal shape caused by keratoconus. The temperature causes the front of the eye to shrink, restoring a normal spherical shape. This is then ‘locked-in’ with a burst of ultra-violet light, preventing further deterioration of the eye.

Imran Rahman, Manchester Face and Eye Clinic, said many sufferers have such distorted eyeballs that they are unable to use normal contact lenses or spectacles to correct their vision. But he said the new keraflex procedure is highly effective.

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