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Friday, June 30, 2017

The efficacy of Iranian herbal medicines in alleviating hot flashes: A systematic review - Iranian Journal of Reproductive Medicine, Vol. 14, No. 3, 2016, pp. 155-166

Herbal medicine, the use of plants or herbs to create medicine, is one of the natural ways of treating illness. Traditional medicine has been discouraged by wide pharmaceutical companies. However, many people still use traditional medicine because of its benefits and fewer side effects such as found in scientific medicine. Modern medicines also derived plant compounds as evidence for their pharmaceutical drugs. Plants and natural herbs are useful in curing illness.

Many women in Iran use herbal medicine instead of industrial medicines when the have hot flashes. Hot flashes are the most common symptom of menopause experienced by women.

Women are recommended to have hormone therapy to alleviate hot flashes however these medicines have side effects such as vaginal bleeding. Therefore, there has been a growing interest in herbal medicine.

The aim of this article was to assess the effectiveness of Iranian herbal medicines in alleviant hot flashes for women. The study uses a systematic review to state that soy, black cohosh, red clover, evening primrose etc, can alleviate the side effects of hot flashes.

This study shows how herbal medicine can alleviate hot flashes. Therefore, herbal medicine can be seen an alternative to industrial pharmaceutical medicines.

Sexual risk behavior among HIV-positive persons in Jamaica - African Health Sciences, Vol. 17, No. 1, 2017, pp. 32-38

Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) can lead to aids, which till now is a global public health challenge. HIV is a transferred from one person to the other through sexual intercourse, or through needles or syringes. People who are HIV positive risky sexual behaviors can lead to their partners being at risk of HIV transmission. It is very important to stop HIV transmission acts.

More people living in developing countries have HIV/AIDS as compared to developed countries. Due to intersectionality, one can see how most people living under poverty line cannot afford to get an education, they do not get the proper education on safe sex. Furthermore, in many developing countries, such as India, talking about sex to one’s children is taboo. This way the children are not educated on how to have safe sex and they are at more of a risk of getting HIV/AIDS. Also, people suffering from drug addictions end up reusing syringes because they can’t afford new ones.

The case study aims to assess the prevalence of sexual risk behaviors within individuals who are HIV positive in clinical care in North Western Jamaica. This study had a cross-sectional survey done of 33 males and 85 females to assess health care characteristic, the knowledge of HIV and Aids and the attitudes and believes on sexual risk behavior.

The study concludes that the occurrence of unsafe sex is high among sexually active individuals with HIV and AIDS in Jamaica.  Not disclosing their status of being HIV positive can place the partners of this individual at risk. Therefore, promoting safe sexual behaviors is very important. Not only there should be a positive social environment for people who live with HIV/AIDs in Jamaica.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Domestic unintentional injury of 1 to 5-year-old children in a rural area of West Bengal, India: a community-based study - Tanzania Journal of Health Research, Vol. 18, No. 3, 2016, pp. 1-8

After the partition of Pakistan and India in 1947, many refugee populations resided near the railway tracks that run through the southern parts of Calcutta. These populations lived in shanties of Calcutta’s Rail Colony for over 50 years (Chatterjee, 2005, p. 53). The population that resides in these railway colonies, are also known as “squatters”, and are always in a constant threat of eviction by the railway's authority as they have settled a space on the properties illegally (Chatterjee, 2005, p. 54). These colonies are more than just urban slums, they are the only home for marginalized communities. The people residing in shanties are then known as “non-citizens” who are unable to claim equal citizenship, benefits, agency, and power as everyone else.

 One can question what rights and facilities are in place for these marginalized communities. A lot of children living in these squatters are neglected as their caregivers are at work and are at risk of injuries as these colonies are right next to railway tracks. Childhood injuries is a leading public health issue where unintentional injuries are a cause of morbidity and mortality in children. According to the World Health Organization, over 630,000 deaths occur annually in children less than 15 years of age in 2011 as a result of unintentional injuries.

The Case study conducted by Banerjee et, Al.  sheds light on the issues of unintentional injuries in West Bengal, India at singur block, hoodhly district. It looks at why children are in risks of unintentional injuries. Primary caregivers were interviewed and the researchers assessed the household based on a checklist that identified the level of injury hazards. The results show that more than 37.4 % of the children had some type of injury in the last 3 months.

The study recommends that parental supervision and modification of the households can prevent these injuries.

Chatterjee, P. (2004). The Politics of the Governed Reflection on popular politics in most of the world. New York, New York, United States: Columbia University Press.

Wednesday, June 07, 2017

Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals in Africa: Call for a Paradigm Shift - African Journal of Reproductive Health, Vol. 20, No. 3, 2016, pp. 19-21

Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) had been a topic of focus in development. The MDGs were 8 goals that all United Nation members agreed to achieve by 2015.  That were committed “to combat poverty, hunger, disease, illiteracy, environmental degradation, and discrimination against women (World Health Organization). Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that followed MDGs aim to not “leave no One Behind”. Not only are the SDGs more ambitious in their goals ( 17 goals and 169 targets), the SDGs have been developed with better consultations, where African countries have played a significant role, are transparent and aimed to have a participatory process.

These 17 Goals are: the eradication of poverty, end hunger, good health and well-being, quality education, gender equality, clean water and sanitation, affordable and clean energy, decent work and economic growth, industry, innovation and infrastructure, reduced inequalities, sustainable cities and communities, responsible consumption and production, climate action, life below water, life on land, peace, justice and strong institutions and partnerships for the goal.

This commentary suggests that SDG will only bee successful if the succeed in Africa. The analysis suggested that the reform requires these three categories: those who require reform, those who require a revolution and those who require reversal. Reform is required to meet economic growth and strengthening domestic resource mobilization for development. Revolution is where the progress needs to spread in multiples to meet the targets such as eliminating hunger or reducing maternal mortality. The revolution category is being parried with reducing slum population or reducing waste.

Shettima argues that “Achieving gender equality goals will revolutionize the achievement of the other goals and is sin qua, non for the achievement of the other goals and for the general attainment of the values and ideas of SDGS.” She states that many of these targets under gender equality are embedded in cultural and social norms and legislation and policies might be involved to reach these targets. She calls for the implementation of compulsory free and education of women to meet the goal of gender equality.

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