Flu vaccine cures narcolepsy sleep disorder
An increase in cases of narcolepsy in China has been linked to the outbreak of swine flu during 2009-10, prompting scientists to find a ‘cure’ for the condition.
The team of researchers has discovered a flu vaccine could prevent the condition, cases of which tripled in China during 2009.
Research into the sudden increase in narcolepsy came after the European Medical Agency advised that the widely used Pandmrix flu vaccine should be banned because of its links with the condition.
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Dr Emmanuel Mignot, from the Stanford Center for Sleep Sciences and Medicine in California was also involved in the study and said: “Our paper shows that to be sick with the flu can trigger narcolepsy, so maybe regular flu vaccines (other than Pandmrix) can protect against it.”
As part of the study the researchers looked at 154 new cases of the sleep disorder that came after the outbreak of swine flu.
“Our findings show a seasonal variation in narcolepsy onset in a Chinese population, occurring most frequently in late spring and early summer,” said Dr. Fang Han from the Beijing University People's Hospital.
He added that although the findings do not conclusively link flu and narcolepsy, there is a strong correlation between the two.
The results of the study have been published in the Annuals of Neurology journal.
Dubai's new smart neuro spinal hospital: need to know
We take a look at Dubai's new smart hospital.
What: The Neuro Spinal Hospital and Radiosurgery Centre is a new hospital featuring state-of-the-art technology for spinal, neurosurgical, neurological, orthopaedic, radiosurgery and cancer treatments. The 700 million AED hospital, (equivalent to £138 million), has 114 beds, smart patient rooms, and green spaces for patient rehabilitation, and is four times the capacity of its former premises in Jumeirah. It is also the UAE’s first hospital to have surgical robots.
Where: The hospital is located in the Dubai Science Park. Founded in 2005, Dubai Science Park is home to more than 350 companies from multinational corporations in life sciences, biotechnology and research; over 4,000 people work here each day.
Who: The UAE's Neuro Spinal Hospital and Radiosurgery Centre was first established in Jumeirah in 2002 by Dr. Abdul Karim Msaddi, as the first as the first "super-specialty" neuroscience hospital.
Why: With advanced diagnosis and robotics, the hospital will provide care across neuroscience, spine, orthopaedics and oncology for people residing in the UAE, as well as international patients.
Prof. Abdul Karim Msaddi, Chairman and Medical Director of the hospital, said: “We are proud to bring world-class healthcare services to Dubai and believe our next-generation hospital will be a game-changer for the emirate’s and the region’s medical industry.
"It will not only significantly increase the availability of specialist neuroscience and radiosurgery treatments and provide better patient care but help attract and develop local and international talent. Investing in the new centre represents our continued faith in the resilience of the region’s economy, as well as a testament to our ongoing drive towards healthcare innovation in the UAE.”