Editor in Chief Dr KK Aggarwal, Padma Shri Awardee                                                                                  Dated:29 October,2019

Two out of three wild poliovirus strains eradicated

(WHO): In an historic announcement on World Polio Day (Oct. 24, 2019), an independent commission of experts concluded that wild poliovirus type 3 (WPV3) has been eradicated worldwide. Following the eradication of smallpox and wild poliovirus type 2, this news represents a historic achievement for humanity.

“The achievement of polio eradication will be a milestone for global health. Commitment from partners and countries, coupled with innovation, means of the three wild polio serotypes, only type one remains,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization and Chair of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) Polio Oversight Board.

There are three individual and immunologically-distinct wild poliovirus strains: wild poliovirus type 1 (WPV1), wild poliovirus type 2 (WPV2) and wild poliovirus type 3 (WPV3). Symptomatically, all three strains are identical, in that they cause irreversible paralysis or even death. WPV3 is the second strain of the poliovirus to be wiped out, following the certification of the eradication of WPV2 in 2015. The last case of WPV3 was detected in northern Nigeria in 2012.


Post-Diwali air pollution in Delhi: Air quality deteriorates to severe category

Public cooperation is a must to reduce air pollution and its harmful effects

The air quality in Delhi became ‘severe’ post-Diwali with AQI levels crossing the 400 mark. The overall AQI at 11.30 am yesterday was 463, according to the System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR). PM 10 levels in severe AQI category exceed 430 and PM2.5 levels are higher than 250. Yesterday, the PM10 level was 439 and PM2.5 level was 271.

The AQI continued to be in the 'severe' to 'very poor' category even at 4 pm yesterday in most parts of Delhi; IGI Airport (T3), the AQI was 421; Anand Vihar, the AQI was 390; ITO 373; JLN Stadium 360; RK Puram 363; Wazirpur 384. ....read more


Children with severe obesity should have greater access to bariatric surgery
Recognizing that severe obesity is a serious and worsening public health crisis in children and adolescents, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is calling for greater access to metabolic and bariatric surgery. In a new policy statement, Pediatric Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery: Evidence, Barriers, and Best Practices,” published Sunday, Oct. 27, the AAP describes severe obesity among children and adolescents as an “epidemic within an epidemic,” one that portends a dramatically shortened life expectancy for today’s generation compared to their parents.

In children and adolescents with less severe forms of obesity, lifestyle modifications have shown moderate success. But these strategies have not worked as well for young people with severe obesity, which is defined as having a body mass index (BMI) of at least 120% of the 95th percentile for age and sex, which roughly equals 35kg/m2 or greater. ....read more


The science behind Bhai Dooj
Bhai Dooj is celebrated two days after Diwali. Like Raksha Bandhan, it is a day dedicated to the sacred love between a brother and sister. Both Raksha Bandhan and Bhai Dooj festivals fall in Chaturmas, one at the start and the other at the end of these four months of negative state of mind. Jagannath Yatra (another festival of love between brother and sister where Krishna is worshipped with his sister Subhadra) is also held in Chaturmas. All three festivals also signify purification of mind, getting it lust free and reminding the people a sacred relationship between men and women. ....read more

Healthcare News Monitor

Delhi witnesses around 76 cases of firecracker eye injuries each year, reveals AIIMS study
ET Healthworld-ANI - Priyanka Sharma

New Delhi: The National Capital on an average gets 76 cases of eye injuries sustained from firecrackers each year, according to a study by AIIMS, Delhi. The data was revealed in a study named 'Prevalence of Firecracker Injury and outcomes with the demographic profile of patients visiting the Emergency Department of a Tertiary Care Center of North India.' The trend on the prevalence of firecracker injuries and its outcomes were studied with the demographic profile of patients who visited the premier institute's emergency department after the festive season of Diwali. According to the outcomes of the study, about 87 cases of eye injuries due to firecrackers were witnessed in 2016. The trend was slightly decreased in 2017 as 56 patients visited the casualty for the same reason. However, the number of patients was increased to 83 in 2018. The study revealed that these fore-borne incidents transpired primarily due to negligence (careless lightening, unsupervised children, delay in treatment, etc) on the part of people by not taking timely precaution and treatment. Notably, after retrospective study of the previous year's data of 2017 and 2016, a pilot study was conducted for a period of one month during the festival of lights. The report further stated that out of 83 patients who visited the emergency department for eye injuries, 78 patients were identified to have developed eye injuries associated with firecrackers. "Out of these patients, almost 11 per cent were males and 14.45 per cent females. While 30.76 per cent were below the age of 10 and 47.37 per cent patients were between 10-20 year age group and 3.95 per cent were above 50," it said. About 72.37 per cent were residents of Delhi while other patients belonged other States like Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan, it noted.

Post Diwali, air quality drops to season's worst in Delhi, but better than last 3 years
ET Healthworld-PTI

NEW DELHI: The national capital's air quality dropped to the season's worst on the morning after Diwali, but the situation was still better than the last three years, according to government agencies. According to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), the city's overall air quality index (AQI) stood at 345, the worst this season, at 10.30 am on Monday. It was 337 at 4 pm on Sunday. The government's air quality monitor, SAFAR, had earlier predicted that Delhi's overall AQI would enter the "severe" category between 1 am and 6 am on Monday, primarily due to firecracker emissions, unfavourable weather and a significant spike in stubble burning. While the city's AQI stood at 327 at 11 pm. It dipped to 323 at 3.30 am, just about when it was expected to enter the "severe" category. It, however, increased to 340 at 8:30 am, as the weather department reported occurrence of shallow fog. Thirty-six of the 37 air quality monitoring stations in the capital recorded their AQI in the "very poor" category. After last year's Diwali, Delhi's AQI had crossed the 600-mark, which is 12 times the safe limit. The AQI post-Diwali was 367 in 2017 and 425 in 2016. An AQI between 0-50 is considered "good", 51-100 "satisfactory", 101-200 "moderate", 201-300 "poor", 301-400 "very poor", and 401-500 "severe". Above 500 is "severe-plus emergency" category. Delhi's air quality was, however, better than satellite towns of Ghaziabad (375), Greater Noida (356), Gurgaon (352) and Noida (375), according to CPCB data

Ranitidine cancer threat: Expect more clarity on products in coming weeks
Business Standard - Sohini Das

With the Australian drug regulator allowing sale of antacid ranitidine made by Strides Pharma, analysts say clarity will emerge in the ensuing weeks as most companies would have submitted their test results to the regulators. In September, several companies, including British drugmajor GlaxoSmithKline Pharma (GSK), Hyderabad-based Dr Reddy’s Laboratories (DRL) had withdrawn their ranitidine products from the markets after the US Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) raising concerns over the presence of a cancer-causing substance in some ranitidine products. Following this, ranitidine manufacturers in different countries (including the US, the EU, and India) were asked by the respective drug regulators to conduct tests for determining the concentration of an impurity (N-nitrosodimethylamine or NDMA) in the ranitidine they supply. This order came in the wake of a citizen petition filed by Valisure (a US pharmacy that chemically validates all the products it delivers to end users). NDMA is a known environmental contaminant and found in water and foods, including meats, dairy products, and vegetables. The USFDA, however, has not asked patients to stop taking ranitidine at this time. ICICI Direct in a recent report noted most Indian suppliers of ranitidine had already submitted their test results.

WHO team camps in Banaskantha as suspected diphtheria cases rise
ET Healthworld- TNN

Palanpur: A team from the World Health Organisation (WHO) has been camping in Banakantha district since past couple of days after at least 10 suspected deaths due to diphtheria were recorded in the district this month. According to chief district health officer Manish Fancy, four suspected diphtheria patients are in critical condition and under treatment at civil hospital in Ahmedabad. Also, at least 35 children are under observation in seven talukas of Banaskantha district. “Two suspected diphtheria patients, both children in age group of 6-10 years, died on Wednesday— one in Ahmedabad civil hospital and another in Palanpur civil hospital,” Fancy told TOI. “A team of WHO has been camping in the district and over 200 teams for state health department are conducting door-to-door survey in affected talukas,” added Fancy. “We are awaiting reports from National Institute of Virology (NIC) Pune to ascertain the cause of deaths of the suspected diphtheria cases,” said Fancy adding that they were also getting reports from Kerala where the diphtheria outbreak in 2016-17 had claimed several lives.