Bernice Katherine International - Items filtered by date: March 2019

  • Published in Events

6th Annual Meeting on Neurosurgery and Neurological Surgeons – May 22-23, London, UK

Neurosurgery 2019 welcomes attendees, presenters, and exhibitors from all over the world to London. We are delighted to invite you all to attend and register for the Neurosurgery conference "6th Annual Meeting on Neurosurgery and Neurological Surgeons" which is going to be held during May 22-23, London, UK

Neurosurgery 2019 has been designed in an interdisciplinary manner with a multitude of tracks to choose from every segment and provides you with a unique opportunity to meet up with peers from both industry and academia and establish a scientific network between them. We cordially invite all concerned people to come join us at our event and make it successful by your participation.

At PULSUS Group, It is our ideology to bring maximum exposure to our attendees, so we make sure the event is a blend which covers professionals such as Neurosurgeons, Scientists, Neurosurgery Researchers, Academic Scientists, Diagnostic Laboratory Professionals from academia &industry making the Neurosurgery 2019 Annual Meeting a perfect platform.

The conference will be organized around the Theme 'A Spot to explore the evolutionary ideas in Neurosurgery'. Our goal is to deliver an outstanding program which covers the entire spectrum of research & innovations in Neurosurgery, care and share the cross-cultural experiences of various treatment procedures.

Neurosurgery 2019 is an Annual meeting of Neurosurgery and Neurological Surgeons as well as committees to discuss the future of the Neurological Disorders in terms of collaboration, structures and organizational development.

For any further assistance / queries please do feel free to contact me at any time on my personal number +1-408-429-2646, I will be grateful assisting you. Hoping your positive response at the earliest to serve you with the best.

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World Infectious Diseases & Rare Diseases Congress - WIRC 2019

World Infectious Diseases & Rare Diseases Congress
WIRC 2019
October 28-29, 2019 | Budapest, Hungary

Scientific Future Group cordially invites all participants across the world to attend the World Infectious and Rare Diseases Congress (WIRC 2019) which is scheduled to be held during October 28-29, 2019 in Budapest, Hungary. The main theme of the conference is “Evolving the way into new era of rare infectious diseases”. This conference is aimed to expand its coverage in the areas of rare infectious diseases where the meeting will be inspired and keep up your enthusiasm. Our expert Organizing Committee is our major asset. World Infectious and Rare Diseases Congress is bringing the most innovative minds, microbiologists, healthcare practitioners, pathology experts, eminent Researchers, Scientists, Professors, and scholars to inspire and present talks to the delegates with new innovative ways to work and innovate through their research. Your presence over the venue will add one more feather to the crown of WIRC 2019.


Conference Highlights:

- Bacteriology

- Virology

- Parasitology

- Rare Infectious Diseases

- Cardiological & Neurological Infectious Diseases

- STD & Contact Diseases

- Neglected & Tropical Infectious Diseases

- Oral Infectious Diseases

- Pulmonary Infectious Diseases

- Rare Pediatric & Gastrointestinal Diseases

- Rare Metabolic and Genetic Diseases

- Rare Renal & Skin Diseases

- Treatment protocols for Rare Infectious Diseases

- Challenges in Rare Infectious Diseases

- Current Research in Rare Infectious Diseases

- Modern Prevention Methods in Rare Infectious Diseases


Target Audience:

- Pathologists

- Microbiologists

- Bacteriologists

- Virologists

- Parasitologists

- Mycologists

- Pharmacists

- Epidemiologists

- Health Care Professionals

- General Physicians

- Researcher Scholars

- Pharmaceutical Companies

- Rare Diseases Associations

- Fellow Students

Why to Attend???

Rare infectious diseases conference gathers communities to discuss the recent research and prevention of chronic rare diseases to solve the hard problems that exist within diagnosing and analysing massive infectious diseases. WIRC 2019 invites attendees from around the world focused on current researches in rare infectious diseases. This would be one of best opportunity to reach the largest assemblage of participants from the Rare Disease community. The attendees can find exclusive sessions and panel discussions on latest innovations in advanced treatments and prevention methods in the field of rare infectious diseases.

For more information:

Organization: Scientific Future Group
Contact Details:

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. | This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Phone No.:
USA: +1-646-828-7579
UK: +44 2036951242


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2nd Annual Nursing Congress: The Art of Care Istanbul- Turkey

We are honoured to welcome you to the “2nd Annual Nursing Congress: The Art of Care", May 27-28, 2019 at Istanbul, Turkey. We take the privilege to invite participants, speakers, students, delegates and exhibitors from across the globe to the conference of Nursing and Healthcare 2019.

Nursing and Healthcare is the global platform for nursing students, faculty, researcher’s deans and leaders to collaborate on topics affecting nursing. Attendees can take advantage of opportunities to learn about nursing from a variety of oral and poster presentations. The conference is going to held by seminars, symposium, oral presentation, workshops, the introduction of most recent treatment developments in the field of Nursing and Healthcare.

The highlights of our conference is based on Nursing and Healthcare, Oncology Nursing, Cardiovascular Nursing, Pediatric Nursing, Education and Management in Nursing, Innovation in Nursing, Hospice and Palliative, Surgical Nursing, Gerontology Nursing, Psychiatric Nursing, Gynaecology and obstetrics Nursing, Women health and Midwifery Nursing, Community Nursing etc.

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Global Conference on Nutrition & Food Science at Rome, Italy during June 24-26, 2019.

Global Conference on Nutrition & Food Science
Rome, Italy during June 24-26, 2019.

Food Conference 2019 showcases the best practices in the world, and provides a one-of-a-kind forum to explore the complete spectrum in food research from basic nutritional essentials to food security, management and advancement in processing technologies. We aim to narrow in on your scientific niche and connect with the experts in your field.

Global Episteme takes pleasure to organize conference on Food science at Italy in 2019. Food Conference 2019 brings together Food Scientists, Sensory analysis, Food Analyst, Flavor Scientists, Nutritionists, Agronomist, Microbiologists, Chemists, Quality Assurance Specialists, and Quality Assurance Managers, Specialists in Food and Beverages, Product Recall Specialists, Product Development Specialists, Quality Control Specialists, Machine Development Specialists, Equipment Handling Specialist etc.,. This is one kind of scientific platform with explicit keynote lectures, plenary sessions, Poster competition, Young Researchers' Forum (YRF), Workshops, Symposiums and Exhibitions from elite researchers, distinguished scientists and business delegates.

We provide unique opportunity for Researcher's, Advertisers, Exhibitors and Sponsors at this International event to share their ideas and improve their Network.

Food Conference 2019 welcomes everyone to join us for three – day conference to "The Eternal City", Rome in the month of June.

We look forward to welcoming you to Rome in June!

For more information kindly contact:
Jenny Caffrey
Program Manager | Neuroscience 2019
Global Episteme Conferences
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29th International Conference on Cardiology and Healthcare

29th International Conference on Cardiology and Healthcare

ME Conferences welcomes you to grace with your presence in the 29th International Conference on Cardiology and Healthcare (Cardiology Care 2019) to be held at Helsinki, Finland during June 10-11, 2019. This International cardiology and healthcare conference will bring together cardiology researchers, cardiologists, cardiac surgeons, professors and scientists to discuss strategies for cardiology globally. Cardiology Care 2019 is designed to provide divergent and prevailing education.

For more information kindly contact
Aurora Lorenz
Program Manager | Cardiology Care 2019
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Tel: +1-201-380-5561 Ext: 7005
Toll No.: +44-2088190774


Is Faith Healing Aiding or Obstructing Medical Practice?

According to a report by Anu Ramachandran (Johns Hopkins University) contained in the Journal of Global Health, the recent rise to fame of Babu of Loliondo, a Tanzanian faith healer who claims to have the ability to cure HIV, has created a cultural and logistical crisis for NGOs and other health organizations working with rural communities in Tanzania, particularly in the area of education.

Faith-based healing is the practice of prayer and gestures (such as laying on of hands) that are claimed to elicit divine intervention in spiritual and physical healing, especially the Christian practice. Believers assert that the healing of disease and disability can be brought about by religious faith through prayer and/or other rituals that, according to adherents, stimulate a divine presence and power.

This practice is predominant across the African continent which is evident with the over 200 000 traditional healers in South Africa and only about 27 000 allopathic medical practitioners. The Traditional Healers' Organization currently represents more than 180 000 traditional healers from South Africa and a number of neighboring countries, including Swaziland, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. The WHO estimates 80% of people in low-income countries rely on non-allopathic healing for their primary healthcare needs.

In an effort to join the conversational pool and proffer solutions to problems generating from such beliefs, BKI Medicals has conducted a survey geared towards finding out the opinion of professionals on the subject matter.

In an interview with Dr. Judy Dlamini, a qualified medical doctor, businesswoman and author, who currently serves as the Chancellor of the University of the Witwatersrand, she stated that Education of faith healers is key.

BKI Medicals: Faith-based healing has been practiced for a very long time all over the world. It has also shaped general ideas of people especially those in rural areas. What is your opinion about faith-based healing?

Dr. Dlamini – Faith healers and traditional healers need to be educated on disease and health interventions required. They need to work with western medical practitioners. Relying on faith healers alone is misleading. Faith helps with whatever initiative that each one takes if you are a believer. Collaboration is what is important. Informed collaboration, explaining the disease process and intervention required and praying for the success of medicine

BKI I Medicals: Some medical practitioners have claimed that in some sense the practice of faith-based healing tends to affect their work as life-savers. Do you think there is a relationship between this assertion and some of the occurrences in your immediate environment?

Dr. Dlamini – Answered above. Healers should encourage people to take their medication. God helps those who help themselves, he works through the practitioners.

BKI Medicals: In your opinion, should there be a merger of the role’s medical practitioners, pastors, traditional herbal healers, and the likes?


BKI Medicals: In some cases, followers tend to misinterpret messages from their leaders. How can leaders regulate such ideas that can be detrimental to the lives of their followers?

Dr. Dlamini – See above. There should be consequences for misleading practitioners.

BKI Medicals: In our discussions with some medical practitioners, we discovered there have been situations where a caregiver is faced with a patient who adamantly refuses a diagnosis, prescription or treatment based on their faith, even when their rejection of the treatment may result in fatal consequences; how do you think this should be handled?

Dr. Dlamini – Education of faith healers is key again


BKI - Medicals


  • Published in Blog

How yo-yo dieting impacts women's heart health

Yo-yo dieting or yo-yo effect, also known as weight cycling, is a term coined by Kelly D. Brownell at Yale University, in reference to the cyclical loss and gain of weight, resembling the up-down motion of a yo-yo. In this process, the dieter is initially successful in the pursuit of weight loss but is unsuccessful in maintaining the loss long-term and begins to gain the weight back. The dieter then seeks to lose the regained weight, and the cycle begins again.

Let’s take a look at this article by Ana Sandoiu

New research reveals worrying associations between yo-yo dieting and seven well-established markers of cardiovascular health.

New research looks into how yo-yo dieting may affect a woman's cardiovascular health.

As if losing weight wasn't hard enough, up to 80 percent of people who manage to lose more than 10 percent of their body weight end up regaining the weight within a year.

Losing weight for a short period and then regaining it bears the name of yo-yo dieting, which some people refer to as "weight cycling."

Previous research has pointed out the potentially damaging effects of these repeated cycles of weight loss and weight gain

Some studies have suggested that yo-yo dieting raises the risk of mortality from any cause, while others have pointed to an increased risk of death from heart disease in particular.

Another study suggested that yo-yo dieting can lead to a cardiometabolic "roller coaster" in which cardiovascular health remarkably improves with just a few weeks of healthful dieting, but the negative cardiovascular effects are immediate once the individual abandons the diet.

Now, scientists have turned their attention to the cardiovascular effects of yo-yo dieting in women.

Dr. Brooke Aggarwal, who is an assistant professor of medical sciences at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons in New York, led a team examining the effects of weight cycling on seven heart disease risk factors.

Dr. Aggarwal and her colleagues presented their findings at the American Heart Association's (AHA) Epidemiology and Prevention | Lifestyle and Cardiometabolic Health 2019 Scientific Sessions, which took place in Houston, TX.

  • Published in News

Every Girl or Women in The Country Must Have Access to Primary Care – Think Equal

"Every girl or women in the country must have access to primary care: contraception, cancer prevention, prenatal assistance, deliveries in respectful and high-quality care environments".

Dr Maria Celeste Osorio Wender
Vice President of FEBRASGO – Figo Executive Board


Well-being is not just the absence of illness and injury.

Gender equality, with investment in gender-responsive services and infrastructure that meets the needs of women and girls, is essential for a world where all women achieve the highest possible standards of physical, mental, reproductive and sexual health throughout their lives.

As the global voice for women’s health, FIGO believes that the challenges women face – in their choices, pathologies, and safety – cannot be solved in clinical isolation.

We asked Dr Maria Celeste Osorio Wender, Vice President of FEBRASGO (Federaçao Brasileira das Associações de Ginecologia e Obstetricia) about the barriers she sees to equal access of public services and sustainable infrastructure in Brazil, and innovations that are raising the status of women.

The theme of International Women’s Day this year is ‘Think equal, build smart, innovate for change.’ What does this mean to you in the context of women’s health?

That´s a perfect theme. Women must have equality: in education, in health systems, in our future!

Contraception is still widely seen as a woman’s responsibility – in most countries, but particularly in countries where abortion is not allowed, as here in Brazil. When I talk about education as a tool for equality, we need to consider that if a girl has a baby at 14 years old, what does her future look like?

I remember when I was a resident and thought that adolescent pregnancy would be a thing of the past in a near future...Unfortunately it is still a reality and a problem of the present.

A girl must have education, so she will see a better future for herself. I think that´s our main problem in Brazil. Education must be a priority, in every small city or rural area of the country.

Access to public services is essential for health and wellbeing, particularly primary care: but there is often a dangerous gap between men and women, rural and urban. Please could you address the biggest challenge you see for women in Brazil when it comes to accessing public services?

We have a different picture in Brazil - access to public services can be broadly limited, and our gap is economic, more than gender. In fact, it used to be that women went for basic health and preventive medicine more frequently than men. Unfortunately, our financial resources are limited, and we still have a number of women and men not easily reaching public tertiary care.

How is FEBRASGO working to advance gender equity when it comes to access to public services?

FEBRASGO recently undertook a major population survey (link in Portuguese) in collaboration with Datafolha, a polling institute, about women’s satisfaction with the OBGYN profession.

More than one thousand women were interviewed in more than 120 cities, 58 percent from urban areas, 42 percent from rural areas, and more than 58 percent in the public health system (Sistema Único de Saúde - we call it SUS).

78 percent of the women surveyed said they had seen an OBGYN in the last year. We are very proud because, even in the public system, 80 percent of the women were satisfied or very satisfied with their OBGYN care.

But these results also show that there are still many Brazilian women who lack access to public healthcare: 30 percent of women, primarily the rural areas, had difficulty seeing an OBGYN. FEBRASGO is organising campaigns aimed especially at socially vulnerable women, together with work on improving access to public health services, to positively influence this situation.

OBGYNs are on the frontline of women’s health, and change. What is the most exciting innovation you have seen when it comes to accelerating progress for gender equality in your field?

Our goal is to reach Universal Health Coverage. Every girl or women in the country must have access to primary care: contraception, cancer prevention, prenatal assistance, deliveries in respectful and high-quality care environments.




  • Published in News

Moody Month App: Addressing Mental Health Issues

These Female Founders Are Addressing A Majorly Neglected Area of Women's Mental Health with This App
By Megan Bruneau


As a therapist and executive coach, I frequently speak with badass women encouraged to medicate away their feelings. Ashamed over what they perceive to be "emotional instability," they fear they're "too sensitive" to warrant a seat in the boardroom. They've been told tears don't belong in the workplace. They believe they're frauds the moment they notice anxiety creeping in (and then feel another layer of anxiety telling them to get rid of their anxiety).

I can't blame my clients for pathologizing their emotions and seeking a "solution" to their biology. Our rationality-valuing culture encourages logic and stoicism (well, until it doesn't). We're told to "Be positive!" – that our moods are all about the "mindset" we choose – and that sadness or anxiety are signs of mental illness. And of all the negative adjectives that can be used to describe women, "crazy" and "moody" are two of the worst – the antithesis to the perception of the competent businesswoman.

Read full Story Here



Superfetation: Something Else to Consider, While Drafting a Surrogacy Contract

Superfetation as defined by Medicine Net, is an extremely rare situation in which a pregnant woman becomes pregnant a second time with another (younger) fetus. It is characterized by the fertilization and the implantation of a second oocyte in a uterus already containing the product of a previous conception. Superfetation is different from the process of twinning or multiple gestation and involves the conception of an additional fetus during an established pregnancy. With superfetation, the two fetuses have different gestational ages and due dates. Superfetation can occur in some animals but is so rare in humans that fewer than 10 cases have been reported in the medical literature.

As rarely as it occurs in humans, it’s a clause you probably need to consider adding somewhere in that surrogacy contract, because it did happen to Jessica Allen and quite recently too.

Jessica Allen who lives in California already had 2 children when she signed a surrogacy contract with a Chinese couple in 2016. She spoke to ABC News in 2017 after going through a battle to regain custody of her child who was conceived during the surrogacy contract.

Here is her story.

The surrogacy went off without a hitch. But it wasn’t until after delivery that things got messy, which is why Allen tells People, “I’d never do it again. I’m not the only one with a nightmare story, but I am the only one with a story like this.”

Allen followed all the rules perfectly, but something unexpected happened during the pregnancy. She worked with San Diego-based surrogacy agency – Omega Family Global, who paired her with the hopeful couple. In April 2016, Allen had the couple’s single male embryo implanted in her uterus through in-vitro fertilization.

Surrogates are required to take estrogen and progestogen in order to prepare their wombs for a successful implantation. Allen was careful to follow the IVF doctor’s instructions both before and after implantation so that the pregnancy would be a success. Six weeks into the pregnancy, however, the doctor found something that would make Allen pretty concerned.

The Doctors Couldn’t Believe What They Saw

At her six-week scan, the doctors told Allen that she was carrying two babies in her womb. The doctor explained that the chances of a splitting embryo were rare, but that it does happen. Everyone assumed that that was the case and Allen was relieved to know that the couple was excited to be getting twins.

Allen was paid $30,000 plus expenses for volunteering herself as a surrogate. When it was discovered she would be having two babies, her monthly paychecks increased by $5,000. Things were going along just fine until it was time to deliver.

After all was said and done, Allen and her husband were in for a big surprise.

Allen Noticed Something Odd About The Babies

On December 12, 2016 at 38 weeks’ gestation, Allen delivered the two babies via C-section. Because the operation was performed behind an opaque screen, Allen didn’t get the chance to see the babies as they were immediately taken from the operating room.

Later that night while she was recovering, Allen received a visit from the intended mother, who showed her a picture of the babies on her phone. “One looked full Chinese, the other didn’t look full Chinese. It was clear that they were not identical… but I didn’t ask questions,” Allen told People magazine.

The Message That Changed Everything

After the delivery, everyone went their separate ways and Allen returned home to recover. She and her husband used the money they were paid to purchase a brand-new home. Almost a month later, they were getting ready for move-in day when Allen received a text from the intended mother.

The mother sent Allen a picture of the babies and expressed doubt that one of them belonged to her. Allen told New York Post that the intended mother asked, "They are not the same, right?" and "Have you thought about why they are different?"

It’s A Rare Medical Phenomenon, But It Happens

The following week, the babies were subject to a DNA test with unexpected results. As it turned out, one of the babies wasn’t the twin of the implanted embryo. Instead, it was actually the biological son of Allen and her husband! Both embryos even had differing gestational ages.

A medical phenomenon like this is called superfetation, in which a woman continues to ovulate during pregnancy. This means that Allen conceived another child in her womb while she had the implanted embryo of the couple growing inside her. For their part, Allen and her husband were shocked that this happened.

You would think that the couple would just give Allen her baby, but of course, it wasn’t going to be easy…

They Thought They Were in The Clear

Allen and her husband were dumbfounded to discover that one of the babies she delivered was theirs. Per the IVF doctor’s instructions, they waited to get intimate again until Allen herself was confirmed pregnant with the implanted embryo for several weeks.

“As per my contract, Wardell [Allen’s husband] and I did not have intercourse until we were given permission by the IVF doctor, who recommended the use of condoms,” Allen told New York Post. In this case, it is also believed that his phenomenon happened as a result of contraceptive failure.

Allen And Her Husband Didn’t Know What to Do

Nonetheless, Allen and her husband were hit with the news that they had a third baby. They were shocked, to say the least. "I was panicking. My husband and I were panicking. We had no idea how this came about and we had no idea how we were going to prepare for a child overnight. We just moved into a new house, we didn’t have any more money," Allen told People magazine.

While they scrambled to figure out how they were going to handle their unexpected blessing, they were in for a far worse surprise.

Things Took A Turn For The Worst

With the new knowledge that one of the babies was theirs, Allen and her husband did what they could to bring him home. At this point, however, things started to get a little messy and bringing home their son wasn’t going to happen without a catch.

Shortly after they found out one of the babies wasn’t theirs, the Chinese couple allegedly wanted nothing to do with him. Allen was told someone from the surrogate agency was looking after her son and that the Chinese couple demanded up to $22,000 in compensation!

Soon Allen was placed in a situation where she thought she’d lose her own child for good.

Needless to say, All and her Husband went to a rigorous battle to gain custody of their baby, and ended up in debt. One would ask Who Was in The Wrong Here?

There was question over whether anyone was in the wrong in this situation. Some believe that Allen and her husband should have abstained completely, while others believe the IVF doctor is to blame for giving the go-ahead. Others believe the intended parents were in the wrong, but at the same time, they were forced to pay more on the notion that they were expecting twins.

After a lengthy legal battle with the Omega Family Global, Allen says they finally owed nothing. It however remains a wonder why the Agency put Allen through a painstaking process to get her son back, when all parties knew that he was biologically hers.

Allen delivered the babies on December 12, 2016, and on [February] 5, she was handed over her son.

Allen’s case is definitely a lesson, and Superfetation is definitely something to consider when preparing a surrogacy document.

The Omega Family Global issued a statement through the New York Post - “By its very nature surrogacy is a complicated journey which necessitates the support and care of agencies, parents, surrogates, psychologist, lawyers, and a host of other professionals. As with any pregnancy, issues do arise which require great care, attention to detail and respect for the process and the emotions of all involved”


Stroke: It’s Not Just the Age

Yesterday, I visited my friend at the hospital, he was diagnosed of a stroke. John was up and going at his place of business about a week ago, when, in his words, “I suddenly felt a dizzy spell sweep through my body, and I instantly felt like throwing up”.  He got a sit, did the needful into a bucket and blacked out.

He lost his speech for 2 days, and could not walk or move. Fortunately, he had a proactive workforce, who got him immediate and efficient medical services, he is now able to move a little, and speak. John is barely 39 and was always quite serious about eating healthy, sports and fitness. He also runs a business that seems to be doing great financially, and has a happy family life. To say that I was quite shocked is an understatement, and it got me wondering what else we can do to prevent a stroke.

First of all, what is a Stroke?

The Stroke Centre defines A stroke, as a sudden interruption in the blood supply of the brain. Most strokes are caused by an abrupt blockage of arteries leading to the brain (ischemic stroke).  Other strokes are caused by bleeding into brain tissue when a blood vessel bursts (hemorrhagic stroke). Because stroke occurs rapidly and requires immediate treatment, stroke is also called a brain attack. When the symptoms of a stroke last only a short time (less than an hour), this is called a transient ischemic attack (TIA) or mini-stroke.

The effects of a stroke depend on which part of the brain is injured, and how severely it is injured. Strokes may cause sudden weakness, loss of sensation, or difficulty with speaking, seeing, or walking. Since different parts of the brain control different areas and functions, it is usually the area immediately surrounding the stroke that is affected. Sometimes people with stroke have a headache, but stroke can also be completely painless. It is very important to recognize the warning signs of stroke and to get immediate medical attention if they occur.

What can you do to prevent stroke?

Several studies have shown that age makes us more susceptible to having a stroke, as well as having a relative who has had a stroke.  And while we may not be able to reverse our years or change our family history, there are many other stroke risk factors that we can control.

The first step is getting to know what they are, if you know that a particular risk factor is sabotaging your health, you can take steps to alleviate the effects of that risk. Let’s take a look at 7 important things you can do to prevent a stroke published by Harvard Women's Health Watch.

LOWER BLOOD PRESSURE. High blood pressure is a huge factor, doubling or even quadrupling your stroke risk if it is not controlled. "High blood pressure is the biggest contributor to the risk of stroke in both men and women," Dr. Rost says. "Monitoring blood pressure and, if it is elevated, treating it, is probably the biggest difference people can make to their vascular health."

Your ideal goal: Maintain a blood pressure of less than 135/85. But for some, a less aggressive goal (such as 140/90) may be more appropriate.

How to achieve it:

  • Reduce the salt in your diet to no more than 1,500 milligrams a day (about a half teaspoon).
  • Avoid high-cholesterol foods, such as burgers, cheese, and ice cream.
  • Eat 4 to 5 cups of fruits and vegetables every day, one serving of fish two to three times a week, and several daily servings of whole grains and low-fat dairy.
  • Get more exercise — at least 30 minutes of activity a day, and more, if possible.
  • Quit smoking, if you smoke.
  • If needed, take blood pressure medicines.

LOSE WEIGHT. Obesity, as well as the complications linked to it (including high blood pressure and diabetes), raises your odds of having a stroke. If you're overweight, losing as little as 10 pounds can have a real impact on your stroke risk.

Your goal: While an ideal body mass index (BMI) is 25 or less, that may not be realistic for you. Work with your doctor to create a personal weight loss strategy.

How to achieve it:

  • Try to eat no more than 1,500 to 2,000 calories a day (depending on your activity level and your current BMI).
  • Increase the amount of exercise you do with activities like walking, golfing, or playing tennis, and by making activity part of every single day.

Exercise more. Exercise contributes to losing weight and lowering blood pressure, but it also stands on its own as an independent stroke reducer.

Your goal: Exercise at a moderate intensity at least five days a week.

How to achieve it:

  • Take a walk around your neighborhood every morning after breakfast.
  • Start a fitness club with friends.
  • When you exercise, reach the level at which you're breathing hard, but you can still talk.
  • Take the stairs instead of an elevator when you can.
  • If you don't have 30 consecutive minutes to exercise, break it up into 10- to 15-minute sessions a few times each day.

IF YOU DRINK — DO IT IN MODERATION. Drinking a little alcohol may decrease your risk of stroke. "Studies show that if you have about one drink per day, your risk may be lower," says to Dr. Rost. "Once you start drinking more than two drinks per day, your risk goes up very sharply."

Your goal: Don't drink alcohol or do it in moderation.

How to achieve it:

  • Have no more than one glass of alcohol a day.
  • Make red wine your first choice, because it contains resveratrol, which is thought to protect the heart and brain.
  • Watch your portion sizes. A standard-sized drink is a 5-ounce glass of wine, 12-ounce beer, or 1.5-ounce glass of hard liquor.

TREAT ATRIAL FIBRILLATION. Atrial fibrillation is a form of irregular heartbeat that causes clots to form in the heart. Those clots can then travel to the brain, producing a stroke. "Atrial fibrillation carries almost a fivefold risk of stroke, and should be taken seriously," Dr. Rost says.

Your goal: If you have atrial fibrillation, get it treated.

How to achieve it:

  • If you have symptoms such as heart palpitations or shortness of breath, see your doctor for an exam.
  • You may need to take an anticoagulant drug (blood thinner) such as warfarin (Coumadin) or one of the newer direct-acting anticoagulant drugs to reduce your stroke risk from atrial fibrillation. Your doctors can guide you through this treatment.

TREAT DIABETES. Having high blood sugar damages blood vessels over time, making clots more likely to form inside them.

Your goal: Keep your blood sugar under control.

How to achieve it:

  • Monitor your blood sugar as directed by your doctor.
  • Use diet, exercise, and medicines to keep your blood sugar within the recommended range.

QUIT SMOKING. Smoking accelerates clot formation in a couple of different ways. It thickens your blood, and it increases the amount of plaque buildup in the arteries. "Along with a healthy diet and regular exercise, smoking cessation is one of the most powerful lifestyle changes that will help you reduce your stroke risk significantly," Dr. Rost says.

Your goal: Quit smoking.

How to achieve it:

  • Ask your doctor for advice on the most appropriate way for you to quit.
  • Use quit-smoking aids, such as nicotine pills or patches, counseling, or medicine.
  • Don't give up. Most smokers need several tries to quit. See each attempt as bringing you one step closer to successfully beating the habit.
  • Identify a stroke F-A-S-T

Too many people ignore the signs of stroke because they question whether their symptoms are real. "My recommendation is, don't wait if you have any unusual symptoms," Dr. Rost advises. Listen to your body and trust your instincts. If something is off, get professional help right away."

The National Stroke Association has created an easy acronym to help you remember, and act on, the signs of a stroke. Cut out this image and post it on your refrigerator for easy reference.


The Period Game: Innovating the “Taboo Topic”

The world is constantly evolving, and so should we. Back in the day, discussions about body changes were made in low tones, at least in the generation, where I’m coming from. To discuss the seemingly “Taboo Topic” of puberty, menstruation and body changes, my mother took me into a room, and we spoke in low tones about my period and changes I should expect in my body like we were discussing some taboo. Most girls that grew up in my time literarily used the word “Period” like it as something to be mumbled, and never spoken aloud. Even the teachers in my school seemed quite uncomfortable teaching the topic, and I attended an all-girls’ high school, go figure.

How times have changed since then, today we encourage more open discussions about body changes in schools, among peers, and from parents. We try to ensure that teems and pre-adolescents are comfortable to ask questions and study about changes that are occurring, or about to occur in their bodies. While some may argue that they prefer the older ways, as the modern methods of liberal open discussions have created an unhealthy body awareness among preteens, many would say, the liberal method of communication has a lot of advantages.

Daniela Gilsanz and Ryan Murphy have gone a step further to innovate the teaching of the “Taboo Topic” – Menstruation, into an interesting game model – The Period Game.

The Period Game is a board game that teaches about menstruation. It aims to turn a typically uneasy situation/topic into a fun, positive, learning experience. The game teaches participants about what is happening within the body and how to “go with the flow.”

It also makes the game users, more comfortable with the use of the word “Period”, as it is pretty much impossible to play the game without saying words like “period” and “tampon”.

The Period Game is created not just to shifted change the way we talk about periods, but also to change the way we teach them. It Aims to De-Stigmatize Menstruation and is geared toward young people of all genders.

Here is a brief about the game:

The game helps break down the barriers between everyone playing and can often lead to honest conversations in the classroom between students and teachers, or at home between parents and children. In playing the game with young people, we’ve heard so many different period stories, says Daniela Gilsanz, one of the creators of The Period Game.

Boma Benjy Iwuoha


IUD Insertion; Why Does it Hurt So Much?

Despite being rated among the most effective birth control measure, I have heard women say “Gosh, inserting that thing hurt like hell”. Some actually choose other options after they get counseled to avoid the pain. Intrauterine devices are becoming more common in the United States, though they are definitely not a popular choice among women as birth control pills.

Reviews from users say they last long, and they have a high degree of protection. Some are said to cover up to 10 years. I bet many ladies would opt for the IUD if it wasn’t so damn painful.

I’m planning on getting one, and in my normal way, I’ve done a little research to understand why the process of insertion comes with so much pain. And I found this article by Jenna Birch on HuffPost, where she explains Why an IUD Insertion Is So Painful and shares tips on how to make the cramping more tolerable. Let’s go:

To understand why the pain occurs, it’s important to understand the entire procedure. During an IUD insertion, the pain happens in steps.

After counseling the patient and getting consent, your doctor will “insert the speculum as she might during a pap smear,” Rosser said. She will clean your cervix with a solution that will prevent infection, while also stabilizing the cervix with a tool called the tenaculum. All the tools used are completely sterile, and you’ll probably feel the first major cramp during this phase.

After stabilizing the cervix, your doctor will tell you to take deep breaths. “From here, we use a tool [called the sound] to measure the length of the patient’s cervical canal and uterus,” Bhardwaj said. “This is the second big cramp you’ll feel.” If your doctor can’t get the slim instrument through the cervix, she may have to use medication to dilate the cervix.

It’s important that your doctor knows the length and direction of your cervix and uterus to reduce the risk of perforation, where the IUD might go through the uterine wall. In rare cases, a uterus might be too small for an IUD ― in which case, you’d want to discuss alternative methods of birth control with your physician.

Cramp number three is the last one. “Finally, you’ll feel the third cramp when the IUD is actually going in,” Bhardwaj said. The IUD is placed according to the sound’s measurements, using a tube-like inserter that plunges the device into the right spot in the uterus. Once in place, your gyno will trim the IUD strings to roughly 2.5 or 3 centimeters.

Yes, stabilizing the cervix, measuring everything and inserting the IUD each cause cramps, which will undoubtedly cause pain. It’s common to feel lightheaded during or after the procedure. But it’s important to remember the process is only a few minutes total ― and both doctors insist that medical staff will be in no rush to get you out of the exam room after your IUD is set.

To understand why the pain occurs, it’s important to understand the entire procedure. During an IUD insertion, the pain happens in steps.

After counseling the patient and getting consent, your doctor will “insert the speculum as she might during a pap smear,” Rosser said. She will clean your cervix with a solution that will prevent infection, while also stabilizing the cervix with a tool called the tenaculum. All the tools used are completely sterile, and you’ll probably feel the first major cramp during this phase.

After stabilizing the cervix, your doctor will tell you to take deep breaths. “From here, we use a tool [called the sound] to measure the length of the patient’s cervical canal and uterus,” Bhardwaj said. “This is the second big cramp you’ll feel.” If your doctor can’t get the slim instrument through the cervix, she may have to use medication to dilate the cervix.

It’s important that your doctor knows the length and direction of your cervix and uterus to reduce the risk of perforation, where the IUD might go through the uterine wall. In rare cases, a uterus might be too small for an IUD ― in which case, you’d want to discuss alternative methods of birth control with your physician.

Cramp number three is the last one. “Finally, you’ll feel the third cramp when the IUD is actually going in,” Bhardwaj said. The IUD is placed according to the sound’s measurements, using a tube-like inserter that plunges the device into the right spot in the uterus. Once in place, your gyno will trim the IUD strings to roughly 2.5 or 3 centimeters.

Yes, stabilizing the cervix, measuring everything and inserting the IUD each cause cramps, which will undoubtedly cause pain. It’s common to feel lightheaded during or after the procedure. But it’s important to remember the process is only a few minutes total ― and both doctors insist that medical staff will be in no rush to get you out of the exam room after your IUD is set.

“We have patients just lay down or sit for a while,” Rosser said. “In our office, we also do a bedside sonogram right there to check and make sure the IUD is in the right place.”

Jenna goes ahead to share, tips on How to Make the Pain More Tolerable.

While this process might seem overwhelming, there are a slew of things you can do to make your IUD insertion easier and less painful. Make sure to take two ibuprofen before you come into the office, about one or two hours prior to the start of your insertion, Bhardwaj said. Rosser suggested eating a little bit before the procedure, too. “The dilation especially can make you lightheaded,” she explained.

You can also ask for the local cervical numbing block, which is administered through two to five injections in the cervical canal at the time of the insertion. “This should reduce the discomfort of the procedure overall,” Bhardwaj said. Especially if you’re sensitive to pain, in your teens or early 20s, or have never had children, the local anesthetic may help mitigate the cramping you feel.

In terms of aftercare, you may want to take the rest of the day off work, lay low, use a heating pad and continue taking ibuprofen to help with the pain. It’s really common to bleed for a few days and spot intermittently for up to a few months. You may experience some off-and-on cramps, too. “But if you suddenly have more than five out of 10 pain on a zero to 10 scale, go get checked out at urgent care,” Rosser said.

It can take your uterus several months to adjust to the new occupant, and you could have more severe symptoms for a hot minute. For Paragard (the copper IUD) users especially, you might have heavier periods and more cramps in the beginning ― but these do often subside and normalize in time. “If you take a mild over-the-counter [pain reliever] and it’s not working, that’s a pain you need to get checked out by your doctor,” Rosser said. Don’t suffer; there’s a correct birth control option out there for everyone.

But overall, most doctors do love IUDs. In one study mentioned by Rosser, roughly 40 percent of gynecologists using a method of birth control were using IUDs, which is far more than the general population. “They’re the most-used form of birth control among OB/GYNs,” Rosser. said, “And that says a lot.”

A few minutes of pain for a 99-percent effective birth control method that lasts five to 10 years? Often, a good trade-off.

I think I would go for this, definitely better than the pill.


Smoking and HIV

Recent Studies on smoking in people with HIV, published NAM Factsheet, fount that found that people living with HIV appear to metabolise nicotine at a faster rate than HIV-negative people.

This could explain why people with HIV are more likely to become smokers and find it harder to quit. People who metabolise nicotine at a slower rate smoke fewer cigarettes, are less dependent on nicotine and are more likely to succeed in quitting smoking. This was an innovative study – other researchers should try to do the same experiment and see if they get the same results.

The other study found that frequent cannabis smoking is a risk factor for lung disease in men with HIV, in addition to cigarette smoking as a risk factor. It is well known that people with HIV have an increased risk of lung disease. This is partly because of the high rates of smoking among HIV-positive individuals, as well as damage caused by HIV and immune suppression.

The research involved both HIV-positive and HIV-negative men. During ten years of follow-up, men living with HIV who had smoked cannabis every week for at least a year were more likely to have lung disease due to an infection (33%) than men living with HIV who did not use cannabis (22%). Similarly, cannabis smokers were more likely to have bronchitis (21%) than men who did not smoke cannabis (17%).

In contrast, in the men who did not have HIV, cannabis was not linked to either form of lung disease. This suggests that people with HIV are especially vulnerable to lung disease caused by cannabis smoking.