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Disposable catheter is world's first

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          HEALTH TIPS - Friday, February 9, 2007
               "News That Keeps You Healthy"

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             Disposable catheter is world's first

ADELAIDE, Australia, -- A low cost, disposable solid-state 
catheter that can measure swallowing pressure has been 
developed by a University of South Australia research team.
The invention -- the first of its kind in the world -- 
eliminates infection risks posed by existing catheters, 
according to research fellow Dr Hung-Yao Hsu and colleagues, 
who are developing the catheter with Australia's Women's and 
Children's Hospital. Said Hsu: "Current catheters rely on 
the transmission of pressure via water filled lumina to 
transducers external to the body. Each lumen is like a 
garden hose with water running through. If the outlet of 
the hose is blocked suddenly, the pressure inside will build 
up and generate a pressure wave back to the tap end of the 
hose where it can then be sensed. He said the new catheter 
uses solid-state sensors to measure the pressure of swallow-
ing and eliminate the risk of fluid getting into the 
patient's airway. And, while most catheters on the market 
only measure pressure, the new catheter is multifunctional, 
capable of recording a range of measurements. It is also 
expected to be about 10 times cheaper than current models, 
and is designed for single use only.

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         Depression might be part of being a parent

GAINESVILLE, Fla., -- A study by Florida State and Vanderbilt 
Universities finds parents have significantly higher levels 
of depression than do adults who do not have children. Florida 
State Professor Robin Simon and Vanderbilt's Ranae Evenson 
said even more surprising was their discovery that symptoms of 
depression do not go away when the children grow up and move 
out of the house. The researchers, who analyzed data from the 
National Survey of Families and Households, theorize parents 
are still involved in their adult children's lives and con-
tinue to be concerned about them. That has an emotional cost, 
they said. The researchers also determined there is no type 
of parent who reports less depression than non-parents. That, 
Simon said, is significant because other major adult roles in 
the United States, such as being married and employed, are 
associated with enhanced emotional well-being. 

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           Chromium may help muscles use blood sugar

BATON ROUGE, La., -- Louisiana scientists say the daily 
use of chromium picolinate may prompt muscles to become 
more efficient, enhancing their sensitivity to insulin.
The research, conducted in obese, insulin-resistant rats, 
showed the chromium improved the ability of insulin, after 
attaching to muscle cells, to enhance chemical signals in 
the cell that promoted blood sugar uptake. The study, 
funded in part by the National Institutes of Health, was 
conducted by researchers at the Pennington Biomedical 
Research Center at Louisiana State University in Baton 

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