News: November 2018

Chemsex and PrEP reliance are fuelling a rise in syphilis among men who have sex with men

No one is entirely sure about the origins of syphilis, a sexually transmitted infection caused by the bacterium Treponema pallidum. The first recorded outbreak in Europe appeared during the 1495 invasion of Naples, where it led to widespread disease and death, particularly among troops on the French side. Later, disbanded armies helped to spread syphilis, the “great pox”, across Europe, where the disease rapidly became endemic.

Transmitted from person-to-person primarily through sexual contact, the first symptom of syphilis to appear is usually a small, round and painless skin ulcer, referred to as a canker, at the site of infection. This canker will eventually heal and disappear but the bacteria remain, circulating in the blood and potentially leading to severe health consequences, including heart disease, dementia and blindness.

This article by Simon Bishop, Lecturer in Public Health and Primary Care, at the School of Health Sciences is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Publication date: 30 November 2018

Insulin pumps offer little value over multiple injections for children in the first year after diagnosis with Type 1 Diabetes

Dr Colin Ridyard and Professor Dyfrig Hughes from the Centre for Health Economics and Medicines Evaluation (CHEME) led the health economic analysis of a recently published study investigating whether insulin administered using infusion pumps was more effective and cost-effective than using injections in babies, children and young people who had just been diagnosed with type I diabetes.

Publication date: 26 November 2018

Poorer children priced out of learning instruments but school music programmes benefit the wider community

Years of austerity in the UK have bitten away at school budgets, and the arts have suffered heavily. Schools can no longer afford to employ teaching assistants, so it is little wonder that local authorities have cut school music funding.

Schools are responsible for their own budgets, and musical instrument lessons that were traditionally subsidised by councils have been cut down in some districts. Now, the Musicians’ Union has found that children living in the poorest areas are no longer getting the exposure to music and the arts that they so often only get in school. With parents being asked to subside instrument lessons, 41% of low-income families have said that they cannot do so due to their limited household budget.

This article by Eira Winrow, PhD Research Candidate and Research Project Support Officer and Rhiannon Tudor Edwards, Professor of Health Economics, at the Centre for Health Economics and Medicinces Evaluation is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Publication date: 13 November 2018