Blog 1. Januar 2020


After all, some drugs also have strong side effects that can now be spared the affected patients"says Kohnen.

Many affected children die before the age of five

The National Rare Disease Network has around 17,000 different forms worldwide. It is assumed that up to 6000 of them also occur in Germany. If you take all of these rare diseases together, you can assume that we actually affect more than four million people. Many of them are children.

The proportion of newborns diagnosed with a rare disease is three to four percent, and around a third of the affected children die before the age of five. There is an incredible amount of suffering behind these sober figures – for the child, but also for their siblings and parents.

"The people who are in our axis network have already found their way to self-help. You have consciously joined forces with other sufferers in order to share the suffering that comes with many of the diseases", the social pedagogue Jogwer-Welz knows from experience. "In mutual understanding for one another, in the shared knowledge of the fragility of life, there is also a lot of exuberant joie de vivre, fighting spirit and hope."

The axis is help for self-help

Evidence-based medicine is hardly practicable for diseases that are very rare. Only "a decision based on the best available data", as scientists in the journal "New England Journal of Medicine" call is possible.

To initiate research projects, to shorten diagnostic paths and to improve therapies, these are the goals of various centers, foundations and associations that have taken on this topic so that the "Stepchildren of medicine" not be forgotten in our society.

The response has been great; the Axis‘ counseling service alone receives around 800 calls a year. For example, after the "Rare Disease Day", February 28 and 29, respectively, and corresponding reporting, the inquiries increase significantly each time: "This is an indication that there are many more people with rare diseases seeking advice who have not previously noticed us."

If your own child were affected

There are diseases that only affect one in 500,000 people. And there are even diseases that have so far only been found in one person in Europe. So the likelihood of getting it is very low.

But you only have to briefly imagine that this is exactly the disease that affects your child in order to agree with Orphanet: "No illness can be too rare to deny attention". Orphanet is a database that brings together all currently available information on rare diseases. Not only specialists from almost 40 countries and suitable drugs are stored here in five languages, but also self-help groups, diagnostic laboratories and the latest research results. Created by experts, this page has also been developed for professionals. Nevertheless, every third of the 20,000 visitors a day is a patient or a relative in desperate need of help.

Axis – the advice center

The counseling for those affected is financed exclusively through donations. All offers are free. The association can be found on the Internet at www.achse-online.de. The telephone number is 030 – 33 00 708 0. Office hours are Mondays and Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and by appointment.

The donation account has the account number 80 50 500, bank code 370 205 00 at the Bank für Sozialwirtschaft. 

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Even people who do not have ADHD can develop typical symptoms – if they are constantly using notifications from their smartphone "bombed" will. US researchers report.

Kostadin Kushlev from the University of Virginia and his colleagues from the University of British Columbia wanted to analyze the impact of constant notifications from smartphones. To do this, they examined 221 test persons from the student body at their universities who did not have ADHD.

Every message makes a sound

For a week, students should maximize their smartphone notifications, so any email, text message, or social media activity should trigger a sound or vibration. The phones also had to be easy to reach.

In the second week, the smartphones were not allowed to allow notifications and also not be easily available.

First "beep", then fidget

After the first week, the participants were clearly less attentive and hyperactive than after the week in which the notifications were issued. They were also easily distracted, had difficulty concentrating, fidgeted, couldn’t sit still, and had trouble working in quiet surroundings.which sentence from an argumentative essay about genetically modified foods best states a claim?

"We have shown that smartphone interruptions can cause inattention and hyperactivity – symptoms of ADHD – even in people who do not have ADHD"said study leader Kushlev.

Smartphones do not trigger ADHD

At the same time, he emphasized that smartphones could not trigger ADHD and that ADHD could not be treated by switching off the notifications. However, the permanent digital incentives help to further increase our general attention deficit.

For ADHD sufferers, it can be concluded that they should pay more attention to their surroundings "low irritation" equip. Parents of ADHD children should ensure regular media hours and ensure that smartphones are used appropriately and in a way that is appropriate to their age.

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Fever can be dangerous for babies. Therefore, parents with febrile infants who are younger than three months old should see a doctor immediately, recommends Monika Niehaus from the Association of Pediatricians (BVKJ).

In older children, a fever does not have to be lowered immediately because it is an important editorial of the immune system against viruses. But that doesn’t apply to babies in their first few months. "At this age, the immune system is not yet properly developed and can hardly fight off infections"says the pediatrician. She sees the critical limit at 38 degrees and more.

Measure the temperature in babies‘ bottom

Parents should ideally measure the temperature in their buttocks, advises Niehaus and also gives parents the tip to have measured the temperature of a healthy child beforehand in order to be able to assess the fever correctly. Healthy children have a body temperature between 36.5 and 37.5 degrees.

Fever from clothes that are too warm

The cause of a fever is usually an infection. But overheating can also lead to this, for example if the baby is dressed too warmly. Dehydration also triggers a fever in babies. "The younger the baby, the more likely it is to see a doctor", emphasizes Niehaus. The rule is: better once too much than once too late. "If the baby seems restless, limp and listless, if it cannot be fed, if it is breathing hard, if it develops a rash or is vomiting with or without diarrhea, parents should always consult a pediatrician with him quickly."

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Germany has achieved a lot in the Corona crisis, says Christian Drosten in his podcast. With a view to the future, the Berlin virologist is also concerned. 

The Berlin virologist Christian Drosten has shown himself satisfied with the German situation in the corona pandemic, but is also concerned about the future. "We are in a uniquely good situation here in Germany right now. We have achieved a lot"said the Charité scientist on Thursday in the NDR podcast. He could agree to many of the current political decisions, even if, from a scientific point of view, he would have wished for a bit more containment before the easing. "I think it’s not as bad as we do in Germany."

Drosten is therefore looking towards autumn and winter with concern: He wonders what happens if one should come over the summer very lightly, but still have no specific medication available by autumn: "Then we can just get into a winter wave and I’m already worried about that"said Drosten. This also applies to the spread of corona in the global south, in countries such as India. "Even looking at the USA is not optimistic for me"he emphasized.

Tougher pace against Corona misinformation

On Thursday, Drosten, together with other doctors and virologists, called for Facebook, Google and Twitter to take tougher action against false information about the corona virus. The measures taken so far did not go far enough, they criticize as the first signatory of an open letter to the Avaaz campaign network. A central requirement is that online platforms publish corrections.

"This means that every single person who has been exposed to health misinformation on their platforms will be warned and notified, and that a well-designed and independently verified fix will be displayed"According to the letter published on Thursday. In Germany it was signed by Melanie Brinkmann, professor at the Institute for Genetics at the Technical University of Braunschweig, among others. Brinkmann emphasized that it is important that people receive correct information for classification and that they do not risk their lives frivolously because of incorrect information.

The second requirement is that the online platforms adjust their recommendation algorithms in order to curb the spread of false information.

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In an analysis of Facebook posts in April, Avaaz came to the conclusion that despite measures taken by the online network, a lot of false information remained on the platform without warning. Facebook now notifies users if they have interacted with dangerous false information about the coronavirus on the online network. These are posts that have been removed because they could cause harm. According to them, Facebook does not show which incorrect information exactly triggered the notification.

Sources used: dpa news agency

Ribwort plantain tea and ribwort syrup are particularly popular and effective home remedies for coughs. The medicinal plant was already considered a helpful medicine in antiquity and still does today.

This is how ribwort tea works against coughs

The ribwort is also known by names such as skewort, snake tongue and lung leaf, the latter of which already suggests that there is more to the herbaceous plant than one might suspect at first glance.

The medicinal plant is often used in the form of tea and syrup. As it contains active ingredients such as aucubin, silicic acid as well as mucous and tannins, it is a reliable home remedy and medicine against inflammation of the airways and changes in the mucous membrane of the mouth and throat.

Plantain tea is made with the leaves of the plant. For an infusion, for example, you can make two teaspoons of the tea with a quarter liter of water. Let the mixture sit for ten minutes and then strain it. In order to give the ribwort tea a more pleasant taste and to increase its healing properties, it is recommended to add a teaspoon of honey to it.

If you suffer from respiratory problems, the Fachverlag für Gesundheitswissen (FID) advises you to drink a cup of freshly made ribwort tea three times a day. Incidentally, the tea should not only be effective against coughs, but also be beneficial for spring cures and for smoking cessation.

Prepare ribwort syrup yourself

Ribwort plantain syrup is also a common home remedy for coughs and is easy to make yourself. To do this, you need a 1-liter, clean glass that you fill with fresh plantain leaves. First, wash the leaves, cut them into small pieces, and then layer them alternately with 500 grams of liquid honey in the jar. The individual layers should have a height of about one centimeter. When the jar is full, cover it with a sterilized lid and place it on a window sill in a warm room.

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Every day you should turn the jar once to keep all the ribwort leaves covered with honey. After about three weeks, you can strain the syrup and pour it into a dark bottle. If you keep it in the refrigerator, it’ll last about a year, according to the FID. To use it against coughs or other respiratory problems, mix a teaspoon of ribwort syrup with herbal tea or take it straight.

In Germany, every child is entitled to eleven preventive medical check-ups, which are paid for by health insurance companies. These examinations, called U1 to J1, are even mandatory in more and more federal states. In the table you will find all U examinations at a glance. 

The program is designed for the early detection of diseases that could endanger the physical, mental, emotional and social development of the child.