Air Medical Net would like to wish everyone a Happy New Year, a Merry Christmas, a Happy Hanukkah, a Joyous Kwanzaa, a Festive Festivus, a Jubilant Saturalia, a Gleðileg Yule, and the very happiest of any other holiday that you celebrate.
This is the time of year, more than any other, when we should all get along. It’s a shame we can’t all get along year-round, but maybe we can try to do so just for the end of December.
Most importantly, those of us in the United States should not provocatively, boisterously, and constantly shout out our unique spins on whether you should say “Happy Holidays” or “Merry Christmas” at Starbucks, because I’m there, and I’m just trying to work on some things.
National Public Radio has just posted a great interview on their site with Dr. Orekunrin, the female doctor and helicopter pilot who brought air ambulance service to the nation of Nigeria. It was a feat some had seen as improbable, if not impossible.
A “flying doctor” herself, Dr. Orekunrin proved that she had the skills and dedication to make Flying Doctors Nigeria a reality. FDN and Dr. Orekunriun has been mentioned before on this site, but this interview, as well as some other reading I’ve done recently, proves that the organization deserves a closer look. Hopefully, we will have more information or an interview with them ourselves in the near future.
In the meantime, you can read the full NPR interview, where Michel Martin talks with her about her experience creating Flying Doctors Nigeria. It’s good reading for everyone in the air medical business.
People who seem to stay heavy despite dieting and exercise may have their DNA to blame for a lack of results.
Genetic researchers at Cambridge have found that mutation of a gene called KSR2 may cause “continued hunger” in patients who are obese, as well as slowing their metabolism.
If these findings are true, this would explain why some people can eat an entire key lime pie at 2 in the morning and never gain an ounce, while others struggle to keep their weight down. It may not be a lack of willpower after all; it may just be (at least in part) your DNA.
The researchers have examined the effect of KSR2 on the development of obesity in mice, but they are now beginning to analyze the effect of the gene in humans.
DailyTech reports that researchers are exploring an exciting area of study related to the effects of electrical stimulation to the lower spine. The therapeutic goal of these experiments, according to DailyTech, is to give paralyzed patients the ability to walk again.
However, there have been complaints from those involved in the experiments that the FDA is holding them up with red tape. Perhaps it’s at least understandable that the FDA is a little leery about allowing human patients to be implanted with new devices and charged with electricity without going through the usual long, rigorous application and testing processes that comes to mind whenever we think of government agencies with three letters in their names.
But watching from the outside and at face value, and with the number of people in the world who suffer from paralysis and/or spinal injuries and could possibly be treated with something as “simple” and ubiquitous as electricity… Well, it’s hard not to immediately sympathize with the researchers.
Relatively often, we hear about the achievements of air ambulance crews picking up and transporting patients (though not nearly as much as we should). And it’s understandable: an often very ill or critically injured patient is directly involved (more accurately, “physically present”) in the transport process.
But organ transport flights can be have just as direct and crucial an effect on saving a patient’s life. Remember the story from 2010, about the air ambulance pilot who, together with EMS workers, heroically entered a crashed, flaming jet to cut the fuel line and save a liver which, miraculously, was undamaged?
To be sure, sensitive medical shipments don’t always require an air ambulance team to deliver them — far from it. Medical courier services are often contracted to deliver all types of medical paraphrenalia, from labs, blood banks, pharmacies, and so on. But the reason organs are so often transported by aircraft makes perfect sense.