Editor in Chief Dr KK Aggarwal, Padma Shri Awardee                                                                                Dated:10 November,2019

WHO short-term health risks of female genital mutilation

Severe pain. Cutting the nerve ends and sensitive genital tissue causes extreme pain. The healing period is also painful.

Excessive bleeding (hemorrhage). Can result if the clitoral artery or other blood vessel is cut.

Shock. Can be caused by pain, infection and/or haemorrhage.

Genital tissue swelling. Due to inflammatory response or local infection.

Infections. May spread after the use of contaminated instruments (e.g. use of same instruments in multiple genital mutilation operations), and during the healing period.

Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). The direct association between FGM and HIV remains unconfirmed, although the cutting of genital tissues with the same surgical instrument without sterilization could increase the risk for transmission of HIV between girls who undergo female genital mutilation together.

Urination problems. These may include urinary retention and pain passing urine. This may be due to tissue swelling, pain or injury to the urethra.

Impaired wound healing. Can lead to pain, infections and abnormal scarring.

Death. Death can result from infections, including tetanus, as well as haemorrhage that can lead to shock.

Mental health problems. The pain, shock and the use of physical force during the event, as well as a sense of betrayal when family members condone and/or organize the practice, are reasons why many women describe FGM as a traumatic event.

(Source: WHO)


Drug Recalls: Be Healthy, Be Safe

The Drugs and Cosmetics Act has rules for product recalls, complaints and adverse reactions but lacks uniform recall procedure. The government is now drafting new guidelines in this regard

A drug recall is the most effective way to protect the public from a defective or potentially harmful drug. A recall can be voluntary or statutory. Dozens of medications for high blood pressure were recalled over the past several months as federal investigators discovered potentially cancer-causing impurities in them. These common prescription drugs include valsartan, losartan and irbesartan in different combinations and from different manufacturers. ....read more


Should there be a mourning room in the hospital?
In a survey conducted by Heart Care Foundation of India of 400 people from all walks of life, 90% of the people said that wishes of the dying person and dead body should be respected in the hospital setting. They said that doctors should be more compassionate and emphatic at the time of declaring a patient dead.

Unless people are expecting a death, death usually comes as a shock to the family members. It is expected that the relations may be in agony, pain and even anger. Every hospital should have a mourning room where the relatives should be made to sit, counseled and death declared. ....read more


Healthcare News Monitor

ET Bureau-Teena Thacker

NEW DELHI: Have you ever bought a medicine only to return home and discover that the brand name is correct, the packaging is same, but the drug is not what you wanted? The brand name Medzole, for example, is used to market different kinds of medicines. It could be an anti-fungal and also an antibiotic. Vitamin B capsules by Curewell Drugs and Ridley Life Science have the same brand name Bevital. There are many such instances that often pose the risk of improper treatment if it goes unnoticed. The government has geared up to resolve the confusion, restricting companies from using same brand names for different drugs. The health ministry has proposed to make an amendment in the Drugs and Cosmetics Rules to include a provision for regulating brand names by the central licensing authority and has issued a notification on this. “The companies get approval for their drugs on the generic name, which leaves room for duplication. Once the new notification comes into effect, the companies will have to get the trade names registered and also certify to the government that to the best of their knowledge there is no other product available in the market with the same brand name,” a senior government official said. The manufacturer will have to furnish an undertaking in Form 51to the licensing authority to the effect that a similar brand name is not in existence and it would not lead to any confusion or deception in the market. Trade names of drugs are now controlled neither by the licencing authority, nor the trademarks office, which leaves the companies free to manufacture and sell different drugs under the same trade names. The top drug advisory board had discussed the matter in November last year and suggested amendment to the Drugs and Cosmetic Rules 1945 to include the provisions for regulating brand names/ trade names by the Central and State Licensing Authorities.

Hindustan Times

Fewer women are dying during childbirth in India, with the country’s maternal mortality rate (MMR) – the number of mothers dying per 100,000 live births – declining from 130 to 122 in one year, according to data released by the Registrar General of India on Friday, putting India on track to beating a UN deadline by five years. “Maternal Mortality Rate (MMR) of India has declined by 8 points in one year… This decline is important as it translates to nearly 2,000 additional pregnant women saved annually,” said Harsh Vardhan, Union minister of health and family welfare. According to the data, MMR has declined from 130 per 100,000 live births in 2014-16 to 122 deaths per 100,000 live births in 2015-17, a decline of 6.42%. “With this persistent decline, India is on track to achieving the Sustainable Development Goal target for reducing MMR by 2025, five years ahead of timeline of 2030,” Vardhan said. Eleven states have achieved the ambitious target of MMR of 100 per 100, 000 live births by 2020 set under the National Health Policy 2017. The states are Kerala, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand, Telangana, Gujarat, Uttarakhand, West Bengal, Karnataka and Haryana. The most important feature of this bulletin is that MMR in Jharkhand, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand have been published independently for the first time. Karnataka, Maharashtra, Kerala, West Bengal, Odisha, Rajasthan and Telangana, have shown a decline in MMR that is greater than or equal to the national average of 6.42%.

Tribune News Service

“The Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by the Centre in 2014 does not only aim at cleaning up streets, roads and infrastructure of India’s cities, towns, urban and rural areas, but also taking care of overall health of general public so that India has a significant percentage of healthy population,” remarked Dr VM Katoch, former Director-General of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), New Delhi, during a national-level conference “BISICON 2019” held recently in Ludhiana. Dr Katoch was delivering a keynote address during a conference on, ‘Strengthening controlling of GI diseases’ in the context of “Swachh Bharat Abhiyan. It was mentioned that Diarrhoeal diseases kill 100,000 children under the age of 11 months in India each year, making this water and food-borne infection the second largest killer of children after pneumonia.

The Pioneer-PTI

A diet intended to improve both human and planetary health would be unaffordable for at least 1.58 billion people worldwide, mostly in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, according to a study. Earlier this year, the EAT-Lancet Commission on Food, Planet, Health published recommendations for a universal diet that addresses both human and planetary health, according to researchers at the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) in the US. The Commission suggested that adherence to this diet could ensure that our future food systems can sustainably and nutritiously feed the estimated population of 10 billion people in 2050. The new study, published in The Lancet Global Health on Thursday, sought to address what many felt was one of the main components lacking in the creation of the recommended diet, namely affordability. "When formulating this pioneering benchmark diet -- addressing individual health outcomes as well as the health of the planet -- the Commission deliberately did not take its cost into account," said senior author William Masters, an economist at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University in the US.
The research team also found that the EAT-Lancet diet was 64 per cent more costly than the lowest-cost combination of foods that would provide a balanced mix of 20 essential nutrients.
The EAT-Lancet diet has higher quantities of animal-source foods and fruits and vegetables than the minimum required for nutrient adequacy, and much higher quantities than are now consumed in low-income countries.

ET Healthworld – Syed Akbar

HYDERABAD: In a major cause for concern, researchers from Sweden have found a myriad of pharmaceutical residues in water bodies in Hyderabad and to prove their point they have actually extracted the pharma traces to manufacture a novel ‘medicine’, which they named ‘Sordidum Pharmacum’. Though there have been several research studies on high levels of pharma pollution in Hussainsagar, other lakes and Musi river in Hyderabad, it is for the first time that scientists have extracted pharma traces to make a mock pill and label it. The bitter pill was formally released on Thursday. It is ‘onepill-for-all-ailments’ obtained from city lakes and highlights the bad shape of environment in Hyderabad. The mock pill, made from polluted waters of Hyderabad, is a chemical hotchpotch not for consumption but to highlight the extent of pollution in the city. It is a concoction of at least six highly powerful drugs that are sold only on prescription by super-specialist doctors. The work was carried by teams from Apotek Hjartat, Sweden’s largest pharmacy, and The Research Institutes of Sweden (RISE) for about six months.

Pharmabiz India - Shardul Nautiyal

Maharashtra Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has directed Assistant Drug Commissioners (ADCs) in the state to conduct inspections of trade premises for issuance of new drug retail and wholesale licenses. These inspections were earlier carried out by the drug inspectors wherein new applicants are supposed to fill Form 20 and 21, Form 20 B and 21 B for retail and wholesale license respectively. This according to a senior FDA official is done to utilise the manpower of drug inspectors for inspecting premises of existing retail and wholesale licensees for better compliance. D&C Rules stipulates provisions to sell, stock or exhibitor offer for sale, or distribute drugs by retail other than those specified in Schedules C, C(1) and X as per provisions of the D&C Act,1940 and the Rules there under. As per section 51 of D&C Rules 1945, it shall be duty of the inspector authorized to inspect premises licensed for the sale of drugs, to inspect not less than once a year all establishments licensed for the sale of drugs within the area assigned to him, to satisfy himself that the conditions of the licenses are being observed, to procure and send for test or analysis, if necessary, imported packages which he has reason to suspect contain drugs being sold or stocked or exhibited for sale in contravention of the provisions of the Act or Rules there under.

ET Healthworld – PTI

New Delhi: A 66-year-old Iraqi woman got a new lease of life after undergoing an operation at a hospital here for removal of 53 stones from her salivary duct and gland, doctors said on Thursday. The recent surgery performed by doctors at the Sir Ganga Ram Hospital took two hours, they said. The woman patient, hailing from Baghdad, was suffering from recurrent attacks of pain and swelling of the right-sided parotid gland after having food or drink. This wreaked havoc on her life with her having to place severe restrictions on what she could eat, the hospital said in a statement. "After consultation, she was diagnosed to have multiple stones in her right-sided parotid duct with the largest stone being about 8 mm in size stuck midway between origin and end of the duct. Doctors operated on her and removed 53 stones from salivary duct and gland," it said. According to Dr Varun Rai, ENT Consultant, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, the biggest challenge was to remove all the stones without causing any injury to the gland or the thin (3 mm wide) duct.