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Stomach-narrowing surgery eases chronic knee pain

Gorkha Post

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WASHINGTON — Stomach-narrowing surgery does not just augment your beauty but also aids in easing the chronic knee pain, according to a NYU School Of Medicine-led study.

The pain, according to the study leaders at NYU School of Medicine, proceeds from the deterioration and related inflammation in knee joints caused in part by the extra weight they bear.

And, while the pain relief seen with lap-band surgery applied to all patients with osteoarthritic knees, researchers found that it was most helpful in the youngest men and women who lost the most weight.

“Our study shows that extremely obese people seeking relief from their knee pain should consider lap-band surgery earlier because the benefits from it being successful — although significant for all ages — decrease with age,” said study senior investigator, Jonathan Samuels,Associate Professor at NYU School of Medicine.

For the study, published in the journal Seminars in Arthritis and Rheumatism, researchers examined 120 patients who underwent lap-band surgery between 2002 and 2015.

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Samuels said it is likely that knee joints and cartilage become so damaged after a certain point that there is little cushion left for weight loss to preserve. Along these lines, the research team found that people in their 40s reported nearly twice as much pain relief after lap-band as those who had the surgery in their 50s.

More than 130,000 Americans have had the procedure done since 2011, national statistics show. Although the operation is considered relatively safe, complications may include nausea, stomach ulcers, and infection.

The study authors said their findings are especially important because one in three American adults is now overweight. Studies also showed that the number of Americans with osteoarthritis has more than doubled since World War II.

The new analysis was based on the experiences of 120 patients at NYU Langone Health who underwent lap-band surgery between 2002 and 2015. All were surveyed about what they remembered about their knee pain immediately before surgery, a year after their procedure, and for as long as 14 years later.

The main purpose of the survey, researchers said, was to find out why some extremely obese people showed more knee-pain relief from lap-band surgery than others.

Study participants had an average body mass index, or BMI, of 40, which equates to a 5 feet and 10 inches-tall man who weighs about 280 pounds, or a 5 foot 6 inches-tall woman who weighs 250 pounds.

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According to the survey results, men and women in their 40s experienced postsurgical knee pain reductions after one year of between 50 percent and 60 percent; while those in their 50s, one year later, had pain reductions between 30 percent and 40 percent; and those in their 60s, had reductions between 20 percent and 30 percent. Pain relief persisted for a decade in all patients monitored.

Results also showed that BMI at the time of surgery did not influence whose knee pain went down the most. People with BMIs in the upper 40s were just as likely to report decreased knee pain as people with BMIs in the lower 40s if they lost proportionally the same amount of total body weight.

With Agency Inputs

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Health

Drinking 3 cups of coffee or tea daily may keep stroke risk at bay

Raghu Kshitiz

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KATHMANDU — There have been several conflicting studies on the health benefits of drinking coffee and tea and their various varieties. But drinking up to three cups of coffee or tea in a day is safe because it reduces irregular heartbeat and stroke risk, according to a new study published in the journal JACC: Clinical Electrophysiology.

Coffee has previously been believed to worsen abnormal heart rhythms, as doctors generally discourage patients suffering from the condition. However, the results of this particular study say that a daily consumption of upto 300 mg of caffeine may be safe for arrhythmic patients.

This is because the caffeine acts as a stimulant to the central nervous system and blocks the effect of adenosine. Adenosine is a chemical which causes Atrial Fibrillation (AFib).

A single cup of coffee contains about 95 mg of caffeine. It acts as a stimulant to the central nervous system and works to block the effects of adenosine — a chemical that causes AFib.

AFib is the most common heart rhythm disorder, causes the heart to beat rapidly and skip beats, and if left untreated, can cause strokes.

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“There is a public perception, often based on anecdotal experience, that caffeine is a common acute trigger for heart rhythm problems,” said lead author Peter Kistler, Director at Melbourne’s Alfred Hospital.

But, “caffeinated beverages such as coffee and tea have long-term anti-arrhythmic properties mediated by antioxidant effects and antagonism of adenosine,” he added.

A meta-analysis of 228,465 participants showed that AFib frequency decreasing by 6 per cent in regular coffee drinkers, and an analysis of 115,993 patients showed a 13 per cent reduced risk.

Another study of 103 post-heart attack patients who received an average of 353 mg of caffeine a day showed improvement in heart rate and no significant arrhythmias — or abnormal heart rhythms, that cause the heart to beat too fast, slow or unevenly.

However, in two studies, where patients drank at least 10 cups and nine cups of coffee per day, showed an increased risk for ventricular arrhythmias (VAs) – a condition in which the lower chambers of the heart (ventricles) beat very quickly.

On the other hand, patients with pre-existing heart conditions who consumed two or more energy drinks — that contains concentrated caffeine — per day reported palpitations within 24 hours.

With Agency Inputs

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