Stroke Drug Could Be More Widely Used To Clear Brain Blood Clots

The Gilmer Free Press

EDINBURGH, Scotland—Previously, doctors have been wary of administering a blood clot-clearing drug called alteplase to stroke patients whose brain scans show tissue damage. But a new study suggests the drug is beneficial and safe for most patients, and that tissue damage likely doesn’t represent an increased risk of bleeding.

Bleeding inside the brain can prove fatal, so naturally doctors are reluctant to thin the blood of patients with possible brain tissue damage. Research by doctors at the University of Edinburgh, however, shows that alterplase doesn’t increase a patient’s risk of suffering a bleed, even if there’s evidence of tissue damage on their MRI results.

While patients who exhibit signs of tissue damage are still less likely to make a full recovery, alterplase consistently aids recovery and is, in most cases, worth prescribing—according to the results of the new study.

The study showed that only when patients show multiple signs of an increased bleeding risk should doctors consider withholding alterplase. For patients who showed old tissue damage from other diseases as well as signs of a fresh blood clot, just 14 percent proved more likely to suffer a hemorrhage after receiving alteplase.

“Bleeding in the brain is the main side effect of alteplase, so if we can avoid that hazard, then patients are more likely to benefit,“ said study author Joanna Wardlaw, professor at Edinburgh’s School of Clinical Sciences.

The analysis was made possible by a clinical study involving some 3,000 stroke patients who were administered alteplase. The results were detailed in two studies published in the most recent issue of the journal Lancet Neurology.

Celery Root: It’s Not Pretty, But It’s Pretty Tasty

The Gilmer Free Press

Unless you live in France you will not fully appreciate how underused celeriac – also called celery root – is here in the U.S.

In France, this knobby root cousin of the celery we are more familiar with is used in soups, as a puree, raw in salads, as well as in a typical French slaw-like dish called “celeri remoulade.”

Celery root imparts a celery-like flavor that softens when cooked. In purees (peel, cube, boil and mash), try pairing it with other tubers, such as a potato or yam, to balance out the celery flavor. Raw, celeriac works best when thinly sliced, julienned or grated.

In the produce aisle, look for a bumpy small globe about the size of a large softball. Sometimes the flavorful (but fibrous) stalks are attached, which can be cut off and used as an aromatic, primarily for building flavor in broths or braising liquids.

Celery root is a good source of filling fiber and vitamin C, but the big nutritional selling point is the amount of vitamin K packed into this ugly little veggie, with just one serving giving us about half our daily requirement. Vitamin K gets woefully little air time, but it plays an important role in blood and bone health. And don’t forget the very basic benefit of trying new things, which keeps eaters engaged and meals interesting.


The Gilmer Free Press


Servings: 6

1 sheet matzo bread
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
1/3 cup walnuts or pine nuts
1½ pounds Brussels sprouts


Heat the oven to 350 F. Coat 2 baking sheets with cooking spray.

Set the matzo on a rimmed baking sheet. Use 1 tablespoon of the olive oil to brush both sides. Season with salt and pepper. Add the nuts to the sheet pan, then set in the oven. As soon as the matzo is golden brown, remove it from the oven. Continue baking the nuts until toasted, 3 to 4 minutes for pine nuts and 6 to 8 minutes for walnuts. Let the matzo and nuts cool.

Set the matzo and nuts in a zip-close plastic bag, then pound gently with a mallet or rolling pin until evenly crushed. Set aside. Increase the oven temperature to 400 F.

Trim off and discard the ends of the Brussels sprouts. Using a food processor fitted with its thinnest slicing blade, slice the sprouts. Spread the sliced sprouts evenly between the 2 prepared baking sheets. Drizzle each pan with 1½ tablespoons of the olive oil, ½ teaspoon of salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Toss well, then roast on the oven upper shelf until golden brown, 15 minutes, turning the pans and stirring the sprouts every 5 minutes.

Transfer the roasted sprouts to a bowl. Add the matzo-nut mixture, toss well, then serve right away.

Short People More Prone To Heart Diseases

The Gilmer Free Press

Researchers have now revealed that people with short height face an increased risk of developing coronary heart disease.

The study found that every 2.5 inches change in one’s height affects his/her risk of coronary heart disease by 13.5%, MedIndia wrote.

Coronary heart disease is a common cause of premature death worldwide. It is the condition where the coronary arteries that supply blood to the heart muscle become narrowed due to a deposition of fatty material along the walls of the arteries. If a blood clot forms over the deposited plaque then the artery can become completely blocked suddenly giving rise to a heart attack.

University of Leicester Professor, Nilesh Samani, said, “We have shown that the association between shorter height and higher risk of coronary heart disease was a primary relationship and wasn’t due to confounding factors such as nutrition or poor socioeconomic conditions. While the findings do not have any immediate clinical implications, better and fuller understanding of the biological mechanisms that underlie the relationship between shorter height and higher risk of coronary heart disease may open up new ways for its prevention and treatment.“

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