Full moon affects sleep cycle, says new research
“The lunar cycle seems to influence human sleep, even when one does not ‘see’ the moon and is not aware of the actual moon phase,” said Christian Cajochen of the Psychiatric Hospital of the University of Basel.
About the new study
In the new study, the researchers studied 33 volunteers in two age groups in the lab while they slept. Their brain patterns were monitored while sleeping, along with eye movements and hormone secretions.
The data show that around the full moon, brain activity related to deep sleep dropped by 30 percent.
People also took five minutes longer to fall asleep, and they slept for twenty minutes less time overall.
Study participants felt as though their sleep was poorer when the moon was full, and they showed diminished levels of melatonin, a hormone known to regulate sleep and wake cycles.
“This is the first reliable evidence that a lunar rhythm can modulate sleep structure in humans” researchers were quoted as saying by Sciencedaily.com.
Turkey’s 6th transplant performed in Antalya
ANTALYA – Anadolu Agency
Dr. Ömer Özkan of Akdeniz University Hospital in Turkey’s southern province of Antalya and his team have started to transplant the face of braindead Muhittin Turan onto a 54-year-old Turkish patient, Salih Üstün. Turan, aged 31, had a motorbike accident on Aug. 21, and suffered brain death at the hospital. The family of Turan decided to donate his organs.
Prof. Dr. Ömer Özkan, surgeon at the Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Department at the Akdeniz University Hospital in Antalya, who also performed the first and fourth face transplantation surgeries in Turkey, came to the hospital on Aug. 22 at 11 p.m. to harvest the face of Turan.
Turan’s scalp, eyelids, jaw and maxilla, nose and half his tongue were harvested by Dr. Özkan during a successful operation which lasted about 8 hours.
Arriving at the hospital at 7:15 a.m. on Aug. 23, Dr. Ozkan said to a journalist that, “everything is OK.” The operation of the face transplantation started at 7:30 a.m. on Aug. 23 and was expected to be completed later that night.
Turkey’s Face Transplant History
Turkey’s face transplantation adventure began when the family of Ahmet Kaya, who committed suicide on Jan. 21, 2012, donated his face. The face removed from Kaya was transplanted to 19-year-old Ugur Acar, whose face was almost completely seared by a burning blanket when he was only 40 days old.
The successful operation, a first in Turkish plastic surgery history, put Prof. Dr. Ömer Özkan and his team in the spotlight of the international and Turkish media.
The second face transplantation surgery in Turkey was performed at Ankara’s Hacettepe University on Cengiz Gul while the third one occurred on March 17, 2012 at Ankara’s Gazi University.
Sweden best country to grow old: UN
GENEVA - Agence France-Presse
In a rapidly greying world, the Global AgeWatch Index, the first of its kind, found that Sweden, known for its generous welfare state, followed by Norway and Germany were best equipped to deal with the challenges of an ageing population.
How countries care for their senior citizens will become increasingly important as the number of people over the age of 60 is set to soar from some 809 million today to more than two billion by 2050 when they will account for more than one in five people on the planet, the report said.
The survey ranked many African and South Asian countries as the worst places to be retired, with Tanzania, Pakistan and Afghanistan rounding out the bottom three.
The index was compiled by the HelpAge International advocacy group and the UN Population Fund in a bid to provide much-needed data on ageing populations worldwide.
It ranked the social and economic wellbeing of the elderly in 91 countries, by comparing data from the World Health Organization and other global agencies on older people’s incomes, health, education, employment and their environments.
Top 10 is as follows: 1. Sweden 2. Norway 3. Germany 4. Netherlands 5. Canada 6. Switzerland 7. New Zealand 8. USA 9. Iceland 10. Japan Britain came in at 13, ahead of Australia (14) and France (18).
Bottom 10 includes 82. Honduras 83. Montenegro 84. West Bank and Gaza 85. Nigeria 86. Malawi 87. Rwanda 88. Jordan 89. Pakistan 90. Tanzania 91. Afghanistan. Turkey is ranked 70th in the study.
Over 3,300 children seek help for substance addiction in Turkey
ANKARA – Anadolu Agency
The number of children requesting help in battling drug or alcohol addiction was 3,377, while 328 of them received in-patient treatment, Minister Mehmet Müezzinoğlu has said, responding to a written petition filed by Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) Van deputy Özdal Üçer.
There are only three Children and Teenage Substance Addiction Research and Treatment Centers (ÇEMATEM) in Turkey for now, but the ministry plans to open new facilities, including one in the eastern province of Van, the minister added.
Currently, there are only ÇEMATEMs in Istanbul, İzmir and Diyarbakır, so children and teenagers suffering from substance addiction are treated at 25 Alcohol and Drug Addiction Treatment Centers (AMATEM) across the country.
Müezzinoğlu said three new AMATEMs went online last year and that the ministry planned to inaugurate new ones before the end of 2013.
HIV/AIDS patient number nearly 7,000 in Turkey
ANKARA - Anadolu Agency
Some 46.1 percent of cases of the infection in Turkey result from heterosexual sexual intercourse, 9.9 of cases result from homosexual sexual intercourse, and 1.9 of cases result from intravenous drug use, according to the ministry.
HIV most frequently occurs in the 20 to 49 age range in Turkey, while 72 percent of all patients are male. The first HIV patient in Turkey was identified in 1985, since when the number of patients has increased every year.
Some 35.3 million people live with the infection globally, according to the World Health Organization.
However, the head of the infection department of Gazi University’s medical faculty, Prof. Dr. Firdevs Aktaş, said this number was only the tip of the iceberg. Recorded numbers of the disease should not be evaluated as actual numbers, as many patients hide their sickness because of social pressure.
“There are people who have the obsession of being infected and there are others who tend to hide and deny the sickness. It is also widespread for some to say, ‘nothing will happen to me.’ The main reason is society’s exclusion of HIV/AIDS patients,” Aktaş said.
She said the main reason for the spread of the infection was sexual intercourse without the use of a condom.
Aktaş also emphasized that AIDS was not a terminal illness anymore, but had become a chronic disease requiring the use of daily pills.