A year of healthy teachings

The year in the Health Beats section has been intense and we have addressed current issues that affect our present and future well-being. We have learned that there are strange syndromes and allergies. We have reviewed various substances harmful to health and others that we thought were beneficial and are not so good. We also analyze old age, retirement and diet, etc. This week we will make, as a review, a summary of the most interesting of this year.

We saw how in about one of each 600 flights there is an event that requires urgent medical attention. Of them, in one of every 25 the plane is forced to turn around. The cost of these emergency landing maneuvers can be more than 700,000 euros. But if you travel by land you should keep in mind that 10% of drivers are currently over 65 in our country. More than two million of them exceed 70 years. It seems that, according to statistics, the accident rate increases in this age group. The oldest driver in Spain is the 102-year-old Francisco Valbuena from Leon.

The cancer survival has increased in recent years. Screening techniques, the improvement in imaging techniques with PET implantation, for example, have allowed us to diagnose before. Minimally invasive surgical techniques, among many others, have also contributed. Unfortunately, we saw how the chances of having a heart attack increase after 35 years of age. King Juan Carlos was operated, successfully, from the heart.

We have learned that there are rare diseases such as the 'broken heart syndrome' that is usually triggered by a stress situation that is generated suddenly. It can also be produced by good news. Another that we analyzed was the 'shaken baby syndrome' that occurs when shaking a child, usually in the nursing period. Many times the symptoms are nonspecific such as agitation, growth retardation or lethargy and, if not treated in time, the consequences can be serious and lead to death. The new WHO classification gives the sex addiction and to video game the disease category.

The planet is also sick

We have also focused on climate change and pollution. The COP 25 summit has recently been held in our country. Can climate change affect our health? The answer is a resounding yes. Regarding pollution, we were surprised that most deaths are attributable to cardiovascular disease and ICTUS. Pollution can induce the onset of cancer or worsen the symptoms of lung diseases such as asthma.

We have been able to inform ourselves of 'anti-vaccine' movements that are causing diseases such as measles to rebound alarmingly in some countries. We also analyze that the percentage of population that is vaccinated against influenza is still very low in our country. Even within the healthcare staff. We have learned curious things like that the percentage of men and women who snore is very similar. Also that one or two out of every thousand people undergoing general anesthesia suffer 'intraoperative awareness'. This phenomenon consists of realizing things that happen during an operation such as sounds, pain or conversations.

We attended the Nobel Prize dialogue on the aging of the population. During a person's life they will be able to train in different disciplines. You will have enough time to study different careers or trades. In this way, aging will be an active and productive process. Retirement at age 65, as we know it today, will disappear. We have seen how in the nursing homes of Japan, given the lack of caregivers, they have different models of robots that can even sing. But be careful, during the first two years after this, the chances of suffering from cardiovascular disease or depression increase. Also remember that there is a questionnaire with 36 questions to fall in love with, it is never too late to find love, if you look for it.

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