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Simple food-based score can predict long-term obesity risk in healthy adults

Excess weight is the largest cause of ill health and early death in Queensland, causing 8.5% of the total health burden. That's hardly surprising, with two thirds of Queensland adults being overweight or obese. Poor diet, physical inactivity, overweight and obesity all significantly contribute to poor health, chronic diseases and reduced life expectancy in Queenslanders (Overweight and Obesity Prevention Strategy). Now a simple score based on the food people eat could help clinicians predict patients’ risk of becoming overweight and ensure they get the right support and advice, say Spanish researchers who undertook a major long-term study, presented at this year's European Congress on Obesity (ECO) in Vienna, Austria (23-26 May).


New Australian study shows more IV fluids during surgery is beneficial

A mainstay of hospital treatment after major surgery – the intravenous (IV) saline drip – could be revolutionised for millions of patients worldwide following the findings of new international research led by Australian anaesthetists. More than 300 million people worldwide undergo major surgery each year, and anaesthetists have fiercely debated whether to give patients more or less IV fluid during surgery and in the days following. In the last 10 to 15 years there was a move to restrict, by almost a half, the amount of fluids given to prevent complications. While small studies had previously indicated that limiting IV fluids was beneficial for patients undergoing abdominal surgery, the six year, randomised controlled RELIEF trial (or restrictive versus liberal fluid therapy in major abdominal surgery trial) proved otherwise.


Revolutionary new blood test looks at the ‘colour of pain’ to identify chronic pain in babies and dementia patients

One in five people in Australia suffer chronic pain. For medical professionals it can often be hard to identify exactly how much pain a patient is in, especially if they aren’t able to clearly communicate it. But in a world-first breakthrough this challenge could be a thing of the past with a test that can now identify the extent of pain, using the colour of biomarkers in the blood.


Women with gestational diabetes may be at greater risk for chronic kidney disease

Gestational diabetes may predispose women to early-stage kidney damage, a precursor to chronic kidney disease, according to a study by researchers at the National Institutes of Health and other institutions. The findings of the study, Gestational Diabetes Mellitus and Renal Function: A ProspectiveStudy With 9- to 16-Year Follow-up After Pregnancy are reported in Diabetes Care, available on CKN.


Nurses and social media: Protecting your career and reputation

Only in the US - A tired nurse earlier this year, just off duty from her shift at a flu-ridden emergency department, posted a Facebook video urging people to take precautions to avoid influenza. She told the public, in bold terms, how to protect themselves from exposure to influenza and avoid making the ED a cesspool of funky flu. “Here are some ideas how to treat the flu at home — wash your stinking hands,” she said in the video. Ironically the video went viral, and has since been viewed more than 5 million times.


Clinician Profile – Anna Nolan, Parkinson’s Disease Nurse Navigator

Living with a complex chronic disease can leave patients feeling alone and bewildered as they try to find their way through the healthcare system. For a very individual “boutique” condition like Parkinson’s disease, a patient’s journey can be made even harder because each person is forging their own unique way. There are broad paths of similarity as the disease progresses, but patients can’t predict which symptoms they will get, and when they will get them. 


Overworked nurse workload linked to increased risk of patient safety incidents and deaths, according to a ground-breaking study from Finland

When nurses' workload exceed "optimal" levels, the chances of a patient safety incident increased by up to roughly 30% and the chances of patient mortality spiked by around 40%, according to a study published in BMJ available on CKN.


FACT: Pregnancy can be detected by injecting a woman’s urine into a frog or toad

FACT: Mice droppings can be used as an ingredient in smelling salts.
Well, I never.

FACT: If a pregnant woman is scared by a wild dog, her child may be born with excess hair.
Hmmm that actually explains a few things.

FACT: Blowing tobacco smoke into the anus of a semi-conscious person will revive them.
Ah, not sure I want to know about that one to be honest.


Nurses and midwives are the superheroes of health care

Each year the healthcare community celebrates International Nurses on May 12, the anniversary of Florence Nightingale`s birthday. The day provides people working in the nursing profession, as well as those who have been cared for by nurses, the opportunity to acknowledge the wonderful work that nurses and midwives do.

Here at CKN we think Queensland’s 77,000+ nurses and midwives are truly the superheroes of healthcare. 


Clinician Profile – Dr Steve Flecknoe-Brown: Wide Bay’s evidence warrior

Evidence-based practice is in the DNA of the Clinical Knowledge Network. Embracing this approach – the integration of clinical expertise, patient values, and the best available evidence to deliver improved patient outcomes – is critical for every clinician in the state.

Today we speak with one of the champions of evidence-based practice, Dr Steve Flecknoe-Brown (FRACP, FRCPA, FRSM), District Director of Clinical Training in the Wide Bay HHS.