August – September 2019

Galling Gallstones

Bile produced in the liver to help digest fats is stored in the gall bladder. The Liquid can crystallise, which over time, can grow into gallstones. It is estimated that 10% of Australians are affected. Risk factors include being female, over 40, overweight and a family history of gallstones.  Use of oestrogen(e.g. the contraceptive pill) and having diabetes can also increase the risk.

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What is in a handshake?

The handshake is believed to have existed for thousands of years but its origin is unclear. One theory is that it was a gesture of peace - showing a right arm devoid of a weapon. Another is that it consecrated an agreement between people. The earliest recording comes from the ninth century BC.

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Eczema – Prevention and Treatment

Many children will have eczema at some stage and it is common in adults too. Typical symptoms are redness, itching and inflammation of the skin. The commonest areas are the face, elbows, knees and hands, but any part of the body can be affected.

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Avoid the Bite

Mainland Australia is free of malaria although it is found on the Torres Strait Islands. Malaria is potentially fatal infection caused by a parasite which is transmitted by mosquito bites.

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Swollen Ankles

Ankles can swell for many reasons, most of which are not serious. It is best to think about causes as being local (e.g. injury) or a 'distant' (e.g. kidney disease)

The ultimate cause is a build up of fluid at the feet and ankles. Most people as they age will experience this to some degree as the circulation can slow. It is more noticeable at the end of the day and may not be apparent on waking.

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Sinusitis on the Nose

The body has a number of air-filled sinuses which sit below, above and behind the eyes, and are in communication with the nasal passages. Their role is to warm and filter air and produce mucous to trap inhaled dust and other irritants. Too much mucous production, swelling of the linings or blockage can lead to sinusitis.

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