Research Briefs 261007

A third of inhalers are used incorrectly
One in three patients with asthma or COPD misuses their inhaler, US research suggests. Observation of 224 patients using dry powder inhalers showed that 32 per cent made at least one essential error, delegates were told earlier this week at the 73rd annual scientific assembly of the American College of Chest Physicians (ACCP) in Chicago.

Hypnotherapy best to help smokers quit
Smokers are most likely to quit smoking if they undergo hypnotherapy, said US researchers at the ACCP meeting. Of 67 smokers, after 26 weeks, half of the 14 patients treated with hypnotherapy had given up smoking, while just 15 per cent of smokers from the counselling group gave up and only 25 per cent from the 'cold turkey' control group managed to quit smoking.

Educated affected worst by dementia
Dementia hits the most educated hardest, according to US research. A study of 117 people showed that memory loss was faster in those with more education. The six-year study showed that higher education initially delayed dementia onset. However, once it took hold, for every extra year of education, cognitive decline accelerated by 4 per cent a year (Neurology online 2007).

Nap could protect heart
An afternoon nap could take pressure off the heart, preliminary research findings suggest. The study involved nine men and women while they had an afternoon nap, rested in bed or stood up. This showed a significant drop in BP when people had a nap, say Liverpool John Moores University researchers.

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