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TSGQ registered nurse and polysomnographic technician Travis Bell joined 612 ABC radio presenter Kelly Higgins-Devine to discuss sleep disorders on 2nd February 2015.

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Scientists have found that that activation of cholinergic neurons - those that release the neurotransmitter acetylcholine -- in two brain stem structures can induce REM sleep in an animal model. Better understanding of mechanisms that control different sleep states is essential to improved treatment of sleep disorders.

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Going to bed early could help individuals avoid repetitive negative thinking, according to a recent study. According to the authors, repetitive negative thinking is "defined as an abstract, perseverative, negative focus on one's problems and experiences that is difficult to control."

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In a recent US study results indicated that poor sleep may be an early warning sign for addictive and “regretful” behaviour; such as alcohol problems, illicit drug abuse and sexual behaviour. US researchers reviewed the sleep patterns of 6500 adolescents in combination with drug and alcohol habits, between 1994 and 2002.

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Scientists at the Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW) have discovered a link between sleep loss and cell injury. Results of a new study find sleep deprivation causes the damage to cells, especially in the liver, lung, and small intestine. Recovery sleep following deprivation heals the damage.

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New research confirms that sleep disturbances are linked to pain and depression, but not disability, among patients with osteoarthritis (OA).  Results from a new study found that poor sleep increases depression and disability, but does not worsen pain over time.

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Daily Steroids May Not Be Needed for Wheezing

homeo-treatment-asthma 

Asthma is a common chronic inflammatory disease of the airways characterised by variable and recurring symptoms, reversible airflow obstruction and bronchospasm. It is thought to be caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors with treatment usually involving daily treatment with inhaled steroids such as Pulmicort.  Recent research now contests that the current recommended daily dosing of inhaled steroids for children under the age of five may be just as effective as less frequent treatments with a higher dose of inhaled steroids, leading to an overall reduced exposure to the drug.

The research compared outcomes among 278 high-risk preschoolers treated with either the occasional inhaled steroid regimen of the recommended daily regimen.  Study researcher, Zeiger, found the treatments to be equally effective for reducing the frequency of wheezing episodes that required the use of oral steroids over the course of a year.  “We showed that daily treatment was not superior to intermittent treatment, ‘says Zeiger of the Childhood Asthma Research and Education (CARE) Network.  ‘And even though the dose used in the intermittent regimen was four times higher than that used for daily treatment, the cumulative dosage was threefold lower among children in the study’.

The year long study found that on average every 3.5 months the occasional group was being treated and their cumulative dose of the drug was 100milligrams less over the course of the year compared to the children treated daily with 0.5 milligrams.

childgrowth

With these new findings, further research in to the effects of inhaled steroids and the risk for impaired growth is needed.  ‘The implication is that if you are giving less steroid overall there will be less impact on growth, but that remains to be seen,’ pulmonary specialist Len Horovitz, MD, of Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City.  “It could be that there is more absorption with the higher-dose intermittent regimen, even though the cumulative dose is not as great.”  Advances in respiratory health continue to evolve and new questions raised.  The occasional dosing schedule may be a more attractive option to parents given the convenience and possible financial and growth implications for the child.

Asthma Health Centre. Daily Steroids May Not Be Needed for Wheezing. Updated Nov 24. Retrieved from http://www.webmd.com/asthma/news/20111122/daily-steriods-may-not-be-needed-for-wheezing

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