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Home News The Daily Dose The Daily Dose Daily Dose: Friday 18/02

Daily Dose: Friday 18/02


Every day IMN brings you a round up of the best stories from around the web


Fianna Fáil fails to answer


FF leader Michael Martin cannot answer pensioner's question.



Women gives birth to own grandson


An Illinois has created medical history after being one of the first women on Earth to give birth to her own grandchild.

The 61-year-old, Ms Kristine Casey, gave birth to grandson Finnean Lee Connell last Wednesday, by caesarian section after acting as a surrogate mother for her own daughter who was unable to carry a child to term herself.

Medics at the Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago said the pregnancy had gone without a hitch and that the surgery itself had been uncomplicated.


USA: average of 26 children hurt by cribs every day


A new study in the journal Paediatrics has said that 26 children suffer a crib-related injury every day.


Dr Gary A Smith, lead author of the study and director of the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children's Hospital said "The most significant findings for me was the number of injuries. I didn't expect to see 9,500 children a year treated in emergency departments for crib-related injuries."


Dr Smith said his team is the first to investigate how many fatal and non-fatal injuries young children suffer from cribs, bassinets, and playpens. Using data collected by the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System, they found that from 1990 to 2008, there were more than 181,000 children under the age of 2 taken to emergency departments around the country for injuries related to at least one of the nursery products. Falling was the most common cause for injury and 83% of the total injuries suffered came from cribs.


Child heart surgery will stop in England


Child heart surgery will stop at some hospitals across England to ensure patient safety under official plans put forward.


The NHS review looked at all 11 units in England amid concern expertise was being spread too thinly. It has proposed four options, all of which involve stopping operations at either four or five hospitals.


The proposals will now be put out for public consultation and a final decision will be made in the autumn.


However, it could be 2013 before all the units finally stop doing surgery. One of the 11 units, Oxford's John Radcliffe Hospital, has already stopped. The decision came after several deaths there last year.


In total, there are just 31 child heart surgeons across England. Between them, they carry out 3,600 operations each year on children in England and Wales, born with a range of heart defects.

An abalone diver is presumed dead after attack by two great white sharks


The diver was reportedly returning to the surface of the water when two great white sharks attacked him in tandem.


The attack took place off the West Coast of Australia, south of Perforated Island and 25km west of Coffin Bay. The skipper of the aluminium abalone* boat, from which the diver was working, told paramedics, "I saw the beast come up and take him. There's no way he could have survived".


Once the skipper arrived at Point Avoid boat ramp in Coffin Bay, he was treated for shock by paramedics, having witnessed the attack.


One local, who did not want to be named, said the area where the attack happened was a popular abalone diving location and sharks were common in the area.


*Abalone is an edible sea-snail.

They're the opposite of energy drinks - can some liquids put you to sleep?


Unwind, iChill, Dream Water are big names in the US when it comes to bedtime and researchers are looking into their effectiveness. Can these hormonal cocktails make for a good night's sleep?


The Sleep Disorders Centre at the University of Maryland said "Maybe"



"The issue is this: Some of them probably have some biologic effect, but they haven't been as well studied as you'd like," Professor Steven M. Scharf, director of the Sleep Disorders Center continued.


The chief ingredient in many of these beverages is melatonin, a hormone that induces sleepiness and helps coordinate the body's biological clock. It's typically released by the pineal gland around 10 o'clock at night and secretion stops around 4 or 5 am, helping to trigger the body to wake up, Prof Scharf advised.


The body produces about three-fourths of a milligram of melatonin a day. The manufacturer of the sleep aid Snooz'n says its 2.5-ounce "shots" contain five milligrams of melatonin; Unwind, a "relaxation blend," has three milligrams per 12-ounce can.


Oral doses of melatonin haven't worked much better at inducing sleep than a placebo in most studies, Prof Scharf noted. While a single, concentrated shot of the stuff doesn't exactly mimic the body's time-release system. However, research published earlier this year in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society found that a pre-bedtime cocktail of magnesium, zinc and a five-milligram dose of melatonin significantly improved sleep among a group of 43 elderly Italian insomniacs.


Dolphins even smarter than originally thought


And in a very worthwhile use of time and money, scientists have discovered that blindfolded dolphins can in fact see.



Dolphins blindfolded with latex goggles were able to detect and follow other dolphins’ movements. Researchers even said that dolphins can mimic humans to an extent.


The study used three dolphins for its tests. A dolphin named Tanner was always the blindfolded subject and A.J. and Kibby served as demonstrator dolphins. The study titled "Blindfolded Imitation in a Bottlenose Dolphin" is published in the International Journal of Comparative Psychology (Volume 23, No. 4).


Tanner, who was previously trained in wearing the opaque latex eyecups, already knew how to imitate other dolphins' behaviors without blindfolds on. Nearly every time his eyes were covered, Tanner was able to imitate his playmate Kibby's actions, the researchers reported.


The study tested 19 motor and eight vocal behaviors, from waving a fin, to bobbing up and down, to spinning and even giggling. Training took numerous trials and, at first, involved only one eye cup used to blindfold Tanner. Researchers then moved on gradually to two eyecups. After the trials, trainers and researchers tested each behavior twice while Tanner was sighted and blindfolded. The study was spread over 19 sessions in 11 weeks.




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