The Health Links Page

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This page comprises mainly links to sites concerned with particular diseases but also deals with things such as painkillers. To see extracts from articles on various conditions see the next page

There are many reasons why you 'connected' folk might seek medical information on line - time, convenience, difficulty getting an appointment, not wishing to bother the GP with a small complaint, embarrassment etc.  The top searches are said to be for skin complaints, muscles, joints and bones, digestive, colds/flu, anxiety, migraine, Pregnancy, Sexual health, infections and Nutrition. But, although there is lots of useful information on line, it is important to also seek the opinion of a medical professional. The advertisements at the top of this page MAY be useful but may also be trying to sell something. A first port of call should undoubtedly be the two NHS sites : NHS Choices) and NHS Direct See the links below.  Beware of depending entirely on on-line information or 'escalating' a problem from one symptom to something worse (as we used to do when looking up the dusty old family medical encyclopaedia). But, after all that, it may be best to make an appointment.

Fit enough to go to hospital
There is a lot in this.  After all, hospitals are full of sick people

2020 and 2021 are, of course, the years dominated by the Coronovirus Pandemic.

By February 2021 the situation around the world is still desperate for the magic bullet which will stop it in its tracks. Hopes are pinned on vaccines, which may have to be regularly used and updated. There have been previous pandemics with terrible levels of mortality.  It remains to be seen whether modern science to tackle this one (as it has done, in many countries, for Polio, Measles and Smallpox. I will not attempt to the wealth of information about this latest threat to health (and to the economy of 'developed' countries)


A family doctor from Swansea describes how one of his patients was admitted to hospital the day after his 100th birthday with reduced movement of his right arm that was attributed to a small stroke. "When he subsequently came to the surgery, I was surprised that his right hand grip was as strong as ever," he writes. Further careful examination revealed signs of repetitive stress injury of the shoulder joint from having shaken so many well-wishers' hands. He was, needless to say, delighted to hear of his much less serious diagnosis."
This reflects the more general hazard in this age group where an eminently treatable condition is misinterpreted as being due to some incurable "chronic degenerative" disease. Those with pain and stiffness in the joints may too readily be labeled as suffering from "arthritis" when a simple blood test would reveal the true cause to be polymyalgia, which responds well to a small dose of steroids.

The Care Quality Commission was established under the Health and Social Care Act 2008. It is the independent regulator for adult social care and healthcare services in England. Its primary purpose is to register service providers and to then ensure their ongoing compliance against the Essential Standards of Quality and Safety in Care via an inspection and regulatory regime.

The main government health site is at / From there you can find an A to Z of conditions, an encyclopaedia, a symptom checker and the addresses of services near your postcode. If you are hard of hearing you can click CC at the bottom of any explanatory videos to display subtitles.

The old 0845 4647 number is being replaced by calling 111 free from a land line or mobile phone if you need help fast but it is not a 999 emergency call.

For a of useful government sponsored link click Carers

The Queen now dispatches, on average, more than a dozen 100 year Birthday telegrams a day, an almost twentyfold increase on the 200 a year when she first ascended the throne. The birthday itself will no doubt be a happy occasion, although it carries the risk of centenarian hand (or arm) syndrome.....

Slow geezer Joke operation

After a trial in Scotland, the facility to make an appointment with the doctor via digital TV is being introduced countrywide. Eventually, it should also be possible to order repeat prescriptions in this way.  People who have cable, Freeview or Sky TV will be able to access this service via the 'Looking Local' portal.

Prescription Charges

For people who have to pay for prescriptions costs can mount up if they have to have quite a few.  Did you know that you can get  a PPC (Prescription Prepayment Certificate from the NHS. People who have to pay for more than 3 prescription items in 3 months, or 14 items in 12 months, could save money by buying a PPC. From 1 April 2008, the charge for a single prescription item is 7.10, whereas a 3-month PPC will cost you 27.85 and a 12-month PPC 102.50. The most convenient way to pay for your 12 month PPC is by Direct Debit meaning you can spread the yearly cost over 10 monthly installments. The site to contact is  (corrected)

Technology to assist people with special needs :

Bentley Fielden retail a range of portable wheelchair ramps to help increase accessibility for wheelchair users. They stock standard, folding and travel ramps to mention but a few A wide range of daily living aids Provides bathroom equipment, making it easy to use, giving your freedom and dignity  UK family run company providing useful products for the elderly to enable them to enjoy living independently at home and make senior living easier. From walking sticks to pill boxes, grab rails to shower stools. With free delivery on orders over 30

Need help with costs?  Take a look at this site which summarises information about Disabled Facilities Grants with contact information for every council. You can see this tool under the Disabled Facilities Grant section of this page: Comparison site for these important items Get free help and advice about buying a stairlift.


Loneliness and depression :

An excellent article covering most aspects of depression can be found at

SOBS Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide. 0300111 5065 Support for those left behind.

CALM. Campaign Against Living Miserably. 5.a.m until midnight.  08457 90 90 90. Daily webschat for men (who are statistically more likely to commit suicide).

Yoga and Exercise  0800 612 0450 (Julie Robinson)  

How long will you live ?  An Insurance company calculator

Microsoft Health Vault  Store your records, trace your weight progress etc.  A lot of selling, American style  Discussion forum on many health matters A useful North American site Although I am sure most of my 'bits' are pretty worn out I always carry a Donor Card with me and have registered with the Organ Transplant folk here.  You never know, they might find something useful ! Sorry about the gall bladder.  It is already taken.


Alphabetical List of Conditions and sites  .

ALCOHOLISM  A pill designed to reduce alcohol consumption among problem drinkers looks set to be made available to NHS patients in England and Wales. Nalmefene should be made available to people who regularly drink high amounts of alcohol, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) said..Costing just over 3 a tablet, it is already prescribed in Scotland.


Alcorehab (USA)

ALZHEIMERS  This site has a useful test which rates your ability to remember things. If one gets a particularly low score they suggest that you get your ability checked.  They recommend a vitamin B supplement to help ward off Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) or full blown Alzheimer's Disease (AD). They sell the supplement as well as a test kit.  But, in general, I feel that they are doing a good job in this difficult area.  I have to admit my score was 47 which, at 80, just about scrapes home. But I never had a good memory, anyway.  It is one reason I am fond of computers !

The therapy of Music
In my opinion all care homes should have internet access and provide iPads !

Additional links, which may help carers :

DEMENTIA FRIENDS Join a group trying to help people with dementia.  Receive training

DEMENTIA CARE Looking for dementia care in the UK can be difficult at the best of times. The Good Care Group aim to make this transition into care easier, offering a alternative to live in care homes.

ANKYLOSING SPONDILITIS NASS,CO.UK Back pain caused by infection of the spine. A lottery supported charity which provides a Music Box to care homes.


ATAXIA 0845 644 0606 

ATRIAL FIBRILLATION (uneven heartbeat)  01789 451837

AUTISM.  Google have found a use for Google Glass..To help autistics:


Traumatic and Sudden Loss: How to Cope

Things to Know About Being an Executor of an Estate (USA site)

You’re Not Crazy, You’re Mourning: Grief from the Loss of Your Pet

BLIND Royal National Institute for the Blind. RNIB (blind, shop)  See also Eyesight below Get regular reports on technological help for blind and partially sighted people


BLOOD Hereditary Haemochromatosis  Excess iron in the blood.  Haemochromatosis due to frequent transfusions is another matter.  

CANCER Help with cancer, including financial help. The various NHS screening programs 


Elderly Care: A Guide for Families New to Caring can be found at

The guide offers lots of helpful information such as: The Good Care Group is a professional provider of high quality award-winning live-in home care that enables people to stay living safely and happily in their own home, with dignity, choice and independence. With live-in care you get the benefit of one-to-one dedicated care, something simply not achievable in a care home. Couples are able to stay together without one becoming a burden to the other. Our service is fully managed - we pay the carers directly, give them professional training and support them throughout.    Helping you find the right care  A care home assessment site

Https:// An organisation which will look for suitable home persona; care in London and Sussex. (CQC approved) A set hourly rate.
CELIAC DISEASE. Intolerance to wheat, barley and rye

See also :

As of October 2020 the world still awaits the development of a vaccine which could stem the progress of this scourge. Whilst America has approved the safety of Remdisivir, which may reduce hospitalisation times one of the greatest hopes is the OXFORD VACCCINE.

DEAFNESS (my own page)

Cochlear Implants As I have discovered, are a great boon to people born deaf or who become profoundly deaf over the years. A microphone and speech processor is worn over the ear and this is connected by a number of fine wires directly to the cochlear in the inner ear. This requires microsurgery and currently this is in the hands of a skilled surgeon who has to use a drill to navigate through the skull and down past things like the jugula and nerves.  This video explains how a robot might be safer   Main supplier of 'private' (more expensive) hearing aids

RNID,  Now called Action on Hearing Loss  They do a hearing test if you call 0845 600 55 55 or Click HERE

National Deaf Children's Society (NDCS) 0808 800 8880

HEARING DOGS Free to people with severe deafness.  01844 348100 Provide in the ear and behind the ear digital hearing aids at reasonable prices. They give a 30 day money back guarantee


A Youtube video suggesting people with tinnitus get in touch with Action on hearing loss. (actors ?)


DEMENTIA : see Alzheimer's above

Feb 2015  Various devices are now available to help people keep an eye on elderly relatives who live alone (as long as they agree)

DIABETES  A booklet about coping


DRUG USE UK Government information site on all drug and alcohol problems. There has been a rapid increase in deaths from drug use.  Not just heroin but also synthetic opioids such as Fentanyl.

The following links are mainly for the USA.  It would seem that many people have become addicted to prescription drugs, such as Oxycontin.  But, in the States, these can be more expensive than heroin, which is even more addictive. See the following for more information and help: 

Treating pain without opioids

Prescription drug dependency is happening in the UK, too : see this article from The Independent :

See also Alcoholism above

DYSLEXIA  Search :


ENDOMETRIOSIS. Cells growing outside the womb during the monthly cycle, causing pain and tiredness. The cause is often not spotted by the GP.

See my article at Glasses.htm on this site re buying prescription glasses This is an independent review centre for Laser Eye Surgery.  You can join a forum and see what people say about the procedure. you can also enter your postcode and find convenient clinics for permanent contact lenses. is an innovative health care comparison website for laser eye treatment, cosmetic surgery and dental clinics throughout the UK


GAMBLING and help with a gambling 

HEART  (British Heart Foundation) and  

HUNTINTON'S DISEASE New developments (Dec17) see next page


LIVER British Liver Trust  

LUNG British Lung Foundation

LUNG (their anti smoking campaign)

SMOKING.  An American site

SMOKING, Many helpful suggestions at




NARCOLEPSY  Sudden attacks of sleepiness

OBESITY  The NHS Body Mass Calculator  (BMI) can be found at

Obsessive-compulsive Disorder.  
Also and

PAIN  and see below for painkillers

Treating pain without opioids The professional body

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (wrist pain from too much computing !)

Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI)

Computer neck Just my own opinion on this, which deals with computing related neck pain.
There is another good video showing suitable exercises at Chiropractic UK

BACK PAIN According to the Mature Times paper this is affects over a quarter of the adult population. They suggest

Pain. Did you know that Heat Therapy stimulated blood flow, helping to decrease stiffness and relax sore muscles.  Cold Therapy (the frozen peas technique) works by lowering the temperature of the skin, helping to reduce swelling but also numbing the nerve endings. For sudden muscle strains the suggestion is RICE  Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation. The frozen peas should be applied for 20 minutes every few hours. Compression is done with an elasticated bandage.  After two days move to massaging with and external pain relief product e.g Ibuprofen, Transvasin Heat Rub or Spray (or if you can't stand the strong smell try Lloyds Cream)




SAD People who suffer from insufficient sunlight in winter 

SEPSIS  A body reaction to a serious infection.  Can be life threatening.

SLEEP : A helpful link from Cindy Page on problems of sleeping when you get older

SLEEP  (Sleep and apnoea problems)

SMOKING - Vaping and the Freedom From Smoking site, which also supports QuitDay's cause to make a world smoke-free  Https://

VAPING  A useful study can be found at

VAPING A study on student attitudes by Georgetown University School of Nursing & Health. The concern is that vaping may lead to smoking tobacco - a habit that costs nearly half a million lives in the USA each year

SMOKING How to quit

SNORING sell various pieces of equipment.. even ear plugs! But you can also complete the Epworth Sleepiness scale questionaire have some ideas, too.  But see also CircleCity above.


Amazing progres : EmboTrap II Clot Retriever for Acute Ischemic Stroke Cleared for use in Europe. Brain clots causing stroke may be removed by use of a clot trap. It is a tiny mesh which is inserted in the vein to capture and retrieve the clot

Brain and Spine injury Foundation

Swine 'flu  rates increase during the winter. If you get swine 'flu you will be able to get Tamiflu from the surgery via a nominated helper.  There is also a full page description including all the MYTHS about Swine Flu HERE

THYROID (OVERactive thyroid) (many case studies). More on Hypothyroisim (UNDERactive thyroid) Symptoms HERE


PAINKILLERS. These facts are quoted directly from the Good Health section of the Daily Mail (the only bit I read apart from the Financial section !) As with my financial page I claim no special knowledge.
Recent studies have shown that many well advertised brands have precisely the same make up as their less expensive alternatives e.g Savers Paracetamol - 19p. Another study suggests that continual use of painkillers can have an adverse effect e.g. on migraine and suggested an occasional break from them. It is often recommended to not have Grapefruit at the same time as taking some painkillers.  Read the prescription.

Paracetemol : (Branded names : Panadol and Hedex)  Tablet, capsule, syrup.  It numbs the point of pain, such as a cut, and blocks the formation of prostoglandins, which are responsible for pain and inflammation. For headache, toothache, backache. Used for children in syrup form. Best if you suffer from stomach irritation, so better if you have ulcers. Will not reduce swelling in arthritic joints. One side effect (I found) can be a tendency to bruising

Ibuprofen : (Nurofen, Cuprofen) Tablet, capsule, syrup, cream and gel.  The last two are for muscles and joints. Joint, muscle and dental pain. Can reduce swelling and lower temperature. It is a non steroidal anti-inflammatory drug, blocking chemicals produced by the body as a response to pain. Read the instructions/consult doctor, especially if you have high blood pressure, kidney or liver problems, stomach ulcer or other digestive problems. In fact, recently, Ibuprofen and mixed Ibuprofen/ Paracetamol tablets have become recommended less.

Codeine : Related to Morphine, blocking pain receptors found in the ends of nerves, stopping pain from reaching the brain.  Good for one-off pain relief e.g. tooth extraction, menstrual pain. Some people may experience constipation.

Aspirin : (Disprin, Aspirin Clear). Often combined with other tablets such as Anadin.  Sometimes coated, partly to protect the stomach from irritation but also to release more slowly. Use for pain relief, reduce inflammation and joint pain, cold and 'flu (lowers temperature). Use soluble aspirin in a gargle for throat infections. Use as a 'one-hit' drug for headache or toothache (but note the bleeding effect) rather than for a continual problem.  In low doses can prevent clots and strokes - but consult the doctor. Like Ibuprofen it numbs the point of pain, such as a cut and blocks the formation of prostoglandins, which are responsible for pain and inflammation.  it also breaks down platelets in the blood, making them less likely to clot. Can irritate the stomach causing stomach ulcers and bleeding. It can have a serious side effect in younger children and should not be given to them except under medical supervision. Can also trigger asthma attacks and some people are allergic to it. So avoid if subject to asthma, have stomach problems or are taking other anti-coagulants. Don't take before of after surgery (because of the increased bleeding) and do not continue for more than two days unless on doctor's advice.

All the above section re painkillers is quoted directly from the Daily Mail Health pages. I claim no special knowledge.

Aspirin. A study showed that people who routinely take Aspirin are more likely to suffer stomach and brain bleeding, although the benefits for people who have heart trouble or a stroke can outweigh the risk. See Daily Mail article


HEALTH INSURANCE  A friend said that it is a shame that he cannot afford health insurance just at an age when he is likely to need it!  Worth a look at  to find a specialist Financial Advisor who can help you through various possibilities. They are quite thin on the ground and you may have to increase the search area to 25 miles.  There are BUDGET PLANS, which cover in-patient, day patient and possibly limited out-patient treatment.  Some may limit the number of approved hospitals.   STANDARD PLANS will cover Out-patient treatment but still may have a financial limit. Some may offer private ambulance services. COMPREHENSIVE PLANS will, in addition, cover other benefits such as Optical and Dental treatment and private GPs.  You may be able to keep costs down by taking a higher excess e.g. agreeing to pay the first 500 of costs may reduce the premium by 40%.  You can assume that pre-existing conditions are likely to be uncovered, as will conditions which have no known cure, such as diabetes and asthma.

As well as the 'flu jab it is recommended that the over 65s get an anti pneumonia jab at the doctor's. Just ask. A pneumococcal infection can cause septicemia and meningitis as well as breathing difficulties


Medical advances come thick and fast : The following page (click Here) concentrates upon articles extracted from newspapers and magazines dealing with drugs and procedures, some of which are still in the early stages of development but which, nevertheless, may give hope to some people who are suffering.


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