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Posted in News | |

Military children are an overlooked population in need of more attention from school officials, according to David Albright, an assistant professor at the MU School of Social Work. In the past, children from military families were shown as children with an increased risk for emotional, behavioral, and relationship difficulties.

Children From Military Families Could Benefit From School-Based Interventions

Albright said teachers, administrators, guidance counselors, and social workers should be aware of military culture and how it could influence the behavior of children at school.

“Many children who act out in school are asked about common causes of bad behavior, such as bullying or parents’ divorce,” Albright said. “Rarely are children asked whether parents or siblings serve in the military. If their loved ones are away, these children may be experiencing feelings of separation or worrying about whether their parents will be injured or killed. If family members recently have returned from active duty, they may be displaying symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) or Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) that can make children’s home lives more stressful.”

“Right now, we don’t have a set of approved best practices for supporting children from military families,” Albright said. “If schools begin asking whether family members serve, then we can better help these children.”

Albright recommended that interventions should be developed that could then be implemented in schools that directly target military children and their family members.

Posted in News | |

A new compound (BYM338) may significantly improve muscle mass and strength in patients with cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), sporadic inclusion body myositis, and in elderly patients with sarcopenia according to research published in the journal Molecular and Cellular Biology.

Muscle Loss In Cancer Could Be Reversed With New Compound

“Age-related loss of muscle mass is a major contributing factor to falls, broken bones, and the loss of mobility,” says co-corresponding author David Glass of Novartis, Cambridge, MA, one of the compound’s developers, along with first author Estelle Trifilieff, also of Novartis. “This study illustrates that we may have a powerful tool to prevent muscle wasting and promote growth.”

This compound prevents muscle wasting by inhibiting a receptor that engages a cellular signaling system that exists to put the brakes on muscle development when appropriate but those brakes are activated inappropriately, or are stuck on at times. “Our goal was to release the brakes,” says Glass.

It was revealed that the compound boosted muscle mass 25 to 50 percent and increased strength in animal models in the study.

“We need to be able to help people maintain productive and meaningful lives, and muscle function is a major part of the equation,” says Glass. “It could be the difference between independent living and having to move into a nursing home.”

Posted in News | |

Young patients who wait for Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) surgery could be at increased risk for secondary knee injuries, according to a research presented at the American Orthopedic Society for Sports Medicine’s (AOSSM) Annual Meeting.

ACL surgery

This study adds to existing research noting the risk of secondary meniscal and chondral injuries in pediatric patients.

“In reviewing records of young patients who received ACL reconstructions, our data showed higher rates and severity of secondary meniscus injuries when surgery is delayed,” noted lead author Allen F. Anderson, MD, from the Tennessee Orthopedic Alliance in Nashville, Tennessee. “Patients who had surgery 6-12 weeks after ACL injury had 1.45 greater odds of lateral meniscus injury, and those waiting 3+ months increased their risk 2.82 times. The risk for medial meniscal tears was 4.3 times greater when delaying surgery at least 6 weeks.”

For this research, researchers analyzed the records of 130 patients between ages 8 and 16 who had an ACL reconstruction. They were divided into three groups based on timing. During the research, 62 patients were treated less than 6 weeks after injury, 37 were treated 6-12 weeks after, and 36 were treated more than 3 months after. The surgeries occurred between 2000 and 2012, and the majority of patients (64%) were male.

“While parents and other caregivers have obvious reasons for concern over ACL surgery in young patients, it’s important to recognize when it may be beneficial,” commented Anderson. “If surgery now helps eliminate long-term knee problems, it’s certainly a good choice.”

Posted in Youth Development | |

The plans of President Prof. Peter Mutharika towards the Youth as listed in his Tuesday State of the Nation Address has impressed the United States (US) Government, according to US Ambassador to Malawi, Janine Jackson.

U.S. Government Impressed By Youth Development Plans

Mutharika’s dedication to ‘youth development’ was in line with the desire of President Obama of promoting the youth of the Africa, Jackson told journalists. “I am very interested in the president’s dedication to youth development,” Jackson said after the President’s address at the opening of the 45th Session of Parliament.

“That happens to be our President’s priority on the continent of Africa too and we just sent 9 young Africans to the United States to participate in President Obama’s Young African Leaders Initiative. We are really pleased that this government is also committed to youth Development.”

It was disclosed by Jackson that President Obama had invited Mutharika to an African Leaders Summit to be held in the first week of August in the US under the theme ‘Investing in Future Generations of Africans’. President Mutharika, in his address, said his government would emphasize on effectively harnessing the potential of the youth and equipping them with knowledge and skills necessary for their full participation in the social, cultural, economic and political development of the country.

Mutharika added that his government would establish new vocational and business training centers for vendors besides creating new opportunities for soft loans to enable the youth to start their own businesses.

“These initiatives will encourage our youth to develop a mentality towards non-white collar jobs and be prepared for self-employment and entrepreneurship,” said Mutharika.

Posted in News | |

A new study has found that lifelong premature ejaculation issues in a small group of men improve with regularly practicing pelvic floor exercises.

Men With Premature Ejaculation Benefit From Exercises

Premature ejaculation affects about one in five U.S. men younger than 60, according to the American Urological Association.

“Pelvic floor muscles are actively involved in sexual function, and it is natural to assume that by improving the function of these muscles, one will improve one’s sexual performance and outcome,” said Yuchin Chang, a physical therapist at Professional Physical Therapy and Training in Summit, New Jersey. Chang was not involved in the new research.

Researchers used the International Society of Sexual Medicine definition of premature ejaculation as that which occurs “within a minute.” This study was presented at the European Association of Urology’s annual meeting in Stockholm, Sweden.

The exercises are a bit more complicated than those used for incontinence, such as so-called Kegel exercises, said researchers. “These exercises are designed to retrain/re-educate the pelvic floor muscles to either contract or lengthen properly on command and depending on the need,” Chang said. “For instance, to retrain the muscles to contract, one should try to contract their pelvic floor muscles as if they are holding their urine, and hold it for 10 seconds, for 10 repetitions, like the Kegel exercises. But that is just part of what is needed for men with premature ejaculation.” She noted the exercises might not help at all if men don’t learn to do them correctly. “It is best for men who suffer from premature ejaculation to be properly guided by a pelvic floor physical therapist,” Chang said.

“Patients need at least four weeks of training (12 sessions) to learn the specific rehabilitation techniques and exercises described in this study,” Dr. Antonio Pastore, a urologist at Sapienza University of Rome said.

“The pelvic floor exercises, if done properly, should help men with premature ejaculation. And they are more cost-effective and without the potential side effects of the currently used drugs,” Chang said.