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Coffee linked with vision ...

Posted Oct 11 2012 11:56pm


Coffee linked with vision loss?

The study below is somewhere between moronic and dishonest. The  glaucoma incidence between extreme groups was NOT STATISTICALLY SIGNIFICANT.  The one tiny significant effect they did find was that  MODERATE coffee drinkers had more glaucoma than people who drank no coffee.  So you can avoid glaucoma either by drinking no coffee or lots of coffee?  What a load of rubbish! 

There may be something going on in their sample but the authors below don't know what it is.  Who, for instance, were the nurses who drank no coffee?  Strange people!  Maybe they were Mormons and Seventh Day Adventists,  who are known to have better health


Drinking more than three cups of coffee a day may increase the risk of vision loss and blindness, according to American research.

Even moderate amounts of the drink make developing the devastating eye condition glaucoma more likely.

The study, published in the journal Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science, suggests coffee lovers reduce their intake to reduce their chances of developing the condition.

Glaucoma occurs when the drainage tubes within the eye become slightly blocked.

This prevents eye fluid from draining properly, causing pressure to build up. This can damage the optic nerve, which connects the eye to the brain, and the nerve fibres from the retina (the light-sensitive nerve tissue that lines the back of the eye).

The researchers, from the Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, suggest that compounds found in coffee may increase pressure within the eyeball, causing a vision-destroying condition known as exfoliation glaucoma.

This occurs when material is rubbed off both the eye's iris and lens, which then clogs up the eyeball's fluid-draining system, leading to increased pressure within the eye

However no correlation was with other caffeine products such as tea, cola or chocolate.

Previous research has found that Scandinavian populations have the highest occurrence of exfoliation glaucoma.

They also have the highest consumption of caffeinated coffee in the world.

The new study assessed more than 120,000 people in the UK and U.S. who were over 40 and not suffering from glaucoma.

They completed questionnaires about how much coffee they drank and their medical records were checked for a history of glaucoma.

Those who drank more than three cups a day were had an increased risk of developing glaucoma compared with those who abstained.

Women with a family history of glaucoma also had an elevated risk.

Coffee may not be without its benefits, however. Research published earlier this year in the New England Journal of Medicine found drinking four to five cups a day possibly reduced the risk of heart disease, stroke and diabetes, among other conditions

SOURCE

The Relationship between Caffeine and Coffee Consumption and Exfoliation Glaucoma or Glaucoma Suspect: A Prospective Study in Two Cohorts

Louis R. Pasquale


Abstract

Purpose: We examined the association between caffeine and caffeinated beverage consumption in relation to the risk of exfoliation glaucoma or exfoliation glaucoma suspect (EG/EGS).

Methods:  We followed 78,977 women from the Nurses' Health Study (NHS) and 41,202 men from the Health Professionals Follow-up Study (HPFS) who were at least 40 years of age, did not have glaucoma, and reported undergoing eye examinations from 1980 (NHS) or 1986 (HPFS) to 2008. Information on consumption of caffeine-containing beverages and potential confounders were repeatedly ascertained in validated follow-up questionnaires. Confirmation with medical record review revealed 360 incident EG/EGS cases. Multivariate rate ratios (RRs) for EG/EGS were calculated in each cohort and then pooled using meta-analytic techniques.



Conclusions: We observed a positive association between heavier coffee consumption with risk of EG/EGS in this large prospective study.

SOURCE






Study: Many drugs just fine years after “expiry date”

Chances are, your medicine cabinet contains some pills that are past their expiration date. You might even have some pain relievers, some cough syrup or some sleeping pills that were purchased back when Richard Nixon was in the White House. But you can’t seem to throw them away because you suspect they might still be OK to take.

If you’ve wondered whether medicines really do need to be tossed after their expiration date, you’re got some company at the California Poison Control System, UC San Francisco and UC Irvine. Researchers from those institutions decided to satisfy their curiosity by testing the effectiveness of eight drugs that had been sitting around, unopened, in pharmacies for years after they had supposedly gone bad.

These drugs were not just a few years past their prime, these medications were a full 28 to 40 years past their official expiration dates.

The eight drugs contained a total of 15 active ingredients. The researchers couldn’t find a standard test for one of them (homatropine), so they focused their analysis on the other 14.

The tablets and capsules were dissolved and subjected to chemical analysis using a mass spectrometer. That revealed how much of the active ingredients remained in the pills.

Out of the 14 active ingredients, 12 were still at high enough concentration – 90% of the amount stated on the label – to qualify as having “acceptable potency,” the researchers found. These included
Acetaminophen (the pain reliever in Tylenol)

Codeine (an opiate that treats pain and coughs)

Hydrocodone (an opiate used to treat moderate to severe pain)

Phenacetin (an analgesic that’s not used much anymore)

Caffeine (a stimulant)

Chlorpheniramine (an antihistamine used to treat colds and allergies)

Pentobarbital (a short-acting barbiturate)

Butalbital (a barbiturate that lasts for an intermediate period of time)

Secobarbital (a barbituate used to treat insomnia)

Phenobarbital (a barbiturate that controls seizures and relieves anxiety)

Meprobamate (a tranquilizer to treat anxiety)

Methaqualone (a sedative and muscle relaxant known by the brand name Quaaludes)

The only active ingredients that missed that cutoff were aspirin and the stimulant amphetamine.

The expiration date on a drug is usually one to five years after it was manufactured. But those dates are often set arbitrarily, since the Food and Drug Administration doesn’t require pharmaceutical makers to test how long the active ingredients will last, the researchers wrote.

They noted that the Shelf-Life Extension Program allows drugs in federal stockpiles to be retained for up to 278 months after their stated expiration date if tests show they are still potent. But some of the ingredients tested in this study remained good for 480 months – so far.

The research team’s obvious conclusion? “Our results support the effectiveness of broadly extending expiration dates for many drugs,” they wrote.

“The most important implication of our study involves the potential cost savings resulting from lengthier product expiration dating,” they added. “Given that Americans currently spend more than $300 billion annually on prescription medications, extending drug expiration dates could yield enormous health care expenditure savings.”

The analysis was published online Monday by Archives of Internal Medicine. The full report is behind a paywall, but you can can read the first page here.

SOURCE
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