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IBS, knife crime and childhood asthma – this week’s Friday Five

When drugs have failed, psychological therapy can drastically improve the symptoms of IBS, a major trial has found.

Researchers from University of Southampton have found that a remotely delivered course of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) tailored to help IBS patients was able to halve the severity of symptoms and their impact on work and home life by 30%.

These results mean the web-based service could be made available ‘within months’.

Read more from the Independent.

Should A&E doctors be responsible for reporting the victims of knife crime?

A&E doctor Sophie Timmins describes her experience of treating a knife crime victim on New Year’s Eve in London. However, she along with others are concerned about the new proposed Home Office legislation, which places a legal duty on doctors to report knife crime to police.

She says, “my concern is that it may deter young people from seeking my help. By making this a legal requirement, our promise of confidentiality is compromised. We risk losing their trust”

Read more on the Guardian.

Four million cases of childhood asthma could be caused by air pollution from traffic, a study finds.

A study published in The Lancet Planetary Health journal looked at looked at levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) as an indicator of traffic pollution and finds four million asthma cases worldwide attributable to nitrogen dioxide exhaust fumes, with UK ahead of the Netherlands, Belgium, France and Spain for number of cases.

The UK has the highest rates in Europe of childhood asthma caused by air pollution, according to a major global analysis. Experts say urgent action to protect children is required.

Read more in BBC. 

Vital epilepsy and cancer drugs are at a shortage due to Brexit uncertainty

Recent figures show the number of drugs which the government is having to subsidise through the “concession” pricing list for short supply medicines has more than doubled since October, including cancer and epilepsy drugs.

Read more on Independent.


Quote of the week

Our quote of the week comes from Emily Reynolds, author of A Beginner’s `guide to Losing Your Mind, who has written an opinion piece in The Guardian surrounding the mental health of the elderly. She wanted to highlight the stark reality of mental health issues among the older generation and how it is being overlooked by the community.

“Mental health problems don’t end with age. Older people need help too”

Read more from the Guardian.

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