Bento with Reusable Character Bento Box

Yo Kai Watch (妖怪ウォッチ)

The Menu

  • Coarse Ground Beef Hamburg with Ketchup
  • Fried Shrimp
  • Thick Fried Egg
  • Pork Wiener
  • Deep-fried Chicken Thigh
  • Edamame
  • Chicken Rice
  • Shredded Fried Egg
  • Carrot

Limited quantity of the bento will be sold each day at two railway stations in Tokyo for 1,480 yen each.

Advertisements

High-frequency Spinal Cord Stimulation Provides Better Results in Chronic Back and Leg Pain

For patients with severe, chronic back and leg pain, a new high-frequency spinal cord stimulation (SCS) technique provides superior clinical outcomes, compared to conventional low-frequency SCS, reports a clinical trial in the November issue of Neurosurgery, official journal of the Congress of Neurological Surgeons. The journal is published by Wolters Kluwer.

The new ‘HF10’ technique offers lasting reductions in back and leg pain after other treatments have failed, according to the report by Dr. Leonardo Kapural of the Center for Clinical Research and Carolinas Pain Institute, Winston-Salem, N.C., and colleagues. They believe that HF10 therapy could have a major impact on the treatment of chronic back and leg pain, and possibly other conditions as well.

With HF10, Lasting Reduction in Pain Scores at Two Years’ Follow-up

The study included 171 patients with moderate to severe back and leg pain that persisted despite other treatments. Treated at 11 US comprehensive pain centers, the patients had chronic pain that had been present for an average of 14 years. Nearly 90 percent had had previous back surgery; a similar proportion were taking opioid pain medications.

After a trial period, patients were randomly assigned to one of two SCS techniques, with mild electrical stimulation applied to targeted spinal nerves. One group was treated using HF10, with high-frequency stimulation (10 kilohertz) applied for very short periods. The other group received traditional SCS, with lower-frequency stimulation applied for relatively longer periods.

As previously reported, HF10 provided superior pain relief. At three months, scores for back and leg pain decreased by at least half in more than 80 percent of patients receiving HF10. By comparison, conventional SCS achieved similar responses in back pain for 44 percent of patients and in leg pain for 55 percent.

At two years’ follow-up, the HF10 group still had higher response rates: 76 versus 49 percent for back pain and 73 versus 49 percent for leg pain. On a 0-to-10 rating scale, average back pain score decreased by 5 points with HF10 versus about 3 points for traditional SCS. About 60 percent of patients receiving HF10 were “very satisfied” with their treatment, compared to 40 percent with conventional SCS.

Although SCS is not a new treatment, it provides more consistent results for leg pain than back pain, and relies on producing overlapping areas of numbness (paresthesia) to mask pain. By comparison, HF10 seems to provide greater relief of back pain without inducing areas of numbness. The new study is among the few to directly compare different approaches to SCS in patients with back and leg pain.

Within its limitations, the pragmatic clinical trial supports the superiority of HF10 over conventional SCS for patients with chronic, severe back and leg pain. Extending follow-up to two years “provides physicians, patients, and payers with rigorous evidence demonstrating the durability of SCS in treating chronic pain,” Dr. Kapural and coauthors write. They note that the results are “particularly impressive” given the patients’ long history of pain and lack of response to other treatments, including back surgery.

Further research will determine whether HF-10 is useful for other chronic pain problems as well, such as arm and neck pain. Dr. Kapural and colleagues conclude: “The superior and durable results demonstrated in this study are anticipated to lead to improved long-term cost effectiveness and payer acceptance, making this therapy broadly available to patients suffering from chronic pain.”

Source: EurekAlert!

Warm and Cold Sweet

Warm brioche filled with cold gelato

Dental Cleanings May Help Keep Lungs Clean, Too

Regular dental cleanings not only keep your smile bright, they may also keep your lungs healthy.

A new study suggests that regular dental cleanings could lower your risk of pneumonia by reducing levels of bacteria that cause the lung infection.

Each year, nearly 1 million Americans develop pneumonia, the researchers said, and 50,000 die from the disease. Anyone can get pneumonia, but it is more common among older people and those with lung disease and conditions such as AIDS.

In this study, researchers reviewed the records of more than 26,000 people. The study found that people who never saw a dentist were 86 percent more likely to get bacterial pneumonia compared to people who got dental checkups twice a year.

The results were to be presented Thursday at IDWeek. IDWeek is the annual meeting of the Infectious Diseases Society of America, the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America, the HIV Medicine Association, and the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society. Findings presented at meetings are generally viewed as preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed journal.

“There is a well-documented connection between oral health and pneumonia, and dental visits are important in maintaining good oral health,” study author Dr. Michelle Doll said in an IDWeek news release. She’s an assistant professor of internal medicine in the division of infectious disease at Virginia Commonwealth University.

Doll said the mouth will never be free of bacteria. But good dental care can limit the amount of bacteria that’s in the mouth.

“Our study provides further evidence that oral health is linked to overall health, and suggests that it’s important to incorporate dental care into routine preventive health care,” Doll concluded.

Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Japanese-style Cheese Tart

The filling of the tart combines cream cheese, Japanese mushroom and gyūhi (求肥).

Each tart is sold for 486 yen by a bakery in Ginza, Japan.