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Mobile phones: Time to rethink and limit usage
Bobby Paul, Indranil Saha, Sanjay Kumar, SK Samim Ferdows, Gautam Ghose
January-March 2015, 59(1):37-41
DOI:10.4103/0019-557X.152856  PMID:25758729
Radiofrequency waves generated from mobile phones cause potential public health problems. Short-term effects like changes in sleep, heart rate, and blood pressure, and long-term effects like carcinoma are well documented. The Government of India's efforts in laying down regulations regarding the safety limits, manufacture, marketing, and mobile use are still in nascent stage. The need for stringent enforcement of laws for prevention of phone usage while driving and guidelines of medical regulatory bodies regarding rules and regulations of phone usage while at class or attending patients is of utmost importance. This should be supplemented by mass media to raise awareness among people regarding the possible health effects of radiofrequency emissions from mobile phones and the guidelines to minimize its exposure. It is the need of the hour to teach young people to be structured, to know when to have the cell phone on, and to avoid becoming the slave of technology instead of its mastery.
  50,235 516 1
Kuppuswamy's socioeconomic scale: Updating income ranges for the year 2012
Neeta Kumar, Neeru Gupta, Jugal Kishore
January-March 2012, 56(1):103-104
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Updated BG Prasad socioeconomic classification, 2014: A commentary
Abha Mangal, Varun Kumar, Sanjeet Panesar, Richa Talwar, Deepak Raut, Saudan Singh
January-March 2015, 59(1):42-44
DOI:10.4103/0019-557X.152859  PMID:25758730
Modified BG Prasad socioeconomic scale is widely used to determine the socioeconomic status of study subjects in health studies in India. It is an income-based scale and, therefore, has to be constantly updated to take inflation and depreciation of rupee into account. The Consumer Price Index (CPI) for industrial workers (IW) is used to calculate updated income categories for January 2014. Details of the calculations involved will enable young researchers to calculate specific income categories for their research work. State-specific CPI values are also available on the Department of Labour website and should be used to determine more accurate income categories for the study area.
  40,830 2,556 5
Updating income ranges for Kuppuswamy's socio-economic status scale for the year 2014
Sukhvinder Singh Oberoi
April-June 2015, 59(2):156-157
DOI:10.4103/0019-557X.157540  PMID:26021657
  35,039 2,997 11
Public health in India: Issues and Challenges
LS Chauhan
April-June 2011, 55(2):88-91
DOI:10.4103/0019-557X.85237  PMID:21941042
Health is determined not only by medical care but also by determinants outside the medical sector. Public health approach is to deal with all these determinants of health which requires multi sectoral collaboration and inter-disciplinary coordination. Although there have been major improvements in public health since 1950s, India is passing through demographic and environmental transition which is adding to burden of diseases. There is triple burden of diseases, viz. communicable, non-communicable and emerging infectious diseases. This high burden of disease, disability and death can only be addressed through an effective public health system. However, the growth of public health in India has been very slow due to low public expenditure on health, very few public health institutes in India and inadequate national standards for public health education. Recent years have seen efforts towards strengthening public health in India in the form of launch of NRHM, upgradation of health care infrastructure as per IPHS, initiation of more public health courses in some medical colleges and public health institutions and strengthening of public health functional capacity of states and districts under IDSP.
  32,260 3,003 5
Tobacco Control Policies in India: Implementation and Challenges
Jagdish Kaur, DC Jain
July-September 2011, 55(3):220-227
DOI:10.4103/0019-557X.89941  PMID:22089690
Tobacco use is a major public health challenge in India with 275 million adults consuming different tobacco products. Government of India has taken various initiatives for tobacco control in the country. Besides enacting comprehensive tobacco control legislation (COTPA, 2003), India was among the first few countries to ratify WHO the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC) in 2004. The National Tobacco Control Programme was piloted during the 11 th Five Year Plan which is under implementation in 42 districts of 21 states in the country. The advocacy for tobacco control by the civil society and community led initiatives has acted in synergy with tobacco control policies of the Government. Although different levels of success have been achieved by the states, non prioritization of tobacco control at the sub national level still exists and effective implementation of tobacco control policies remains largely a challenge.
  28,773 2,545 31
Surrogacy and women's right to health in India: Issues and perspective
Anu , Pawan Kumar, Deep Inder, Nandini Sharma
April-June 2013, 57(2):65-70
The human body is a wonderful machine. The future of child birth in the form of test tube babies, surrogate motherhood through new reproductive and cloning technology will introduce undreamt of possibilities in the sexual arena. Surrogacy is a method of assisted reproduction whereby a woman agrees to become pregnant for the purpose of gestating and giving birth to a child for others to raise. In some jurisdictions the possibility of surrogacy has been allowed and the intended parents may be recognized as the legal parents from birth. Commercial surrogacy, or "Womb for rent", is a growing business in India. In our rapidly globalizing world, the growth of reproductive tourism is a fairly recent phenomenon. Surrogacy business is exploiting poor women in country like India already having with an alarmingly high maternal death rate. This paper talks about paternity issues and women's right to health in context of surrogacy. Government must seriously consider enacting a law to regulate surrogacy in India in order to protect and guide couples going in for such an option. Without a foolproof legal framework, patients will invariably be misled and the surrogates exploited.
  24,742 1,589 3
Nutritional status of Lodha children in a village of Paschim Medinipur district, West Bengal
S Bisai, K Bose, A Ghosh
October-December 2008, 52(4):203-206
Undernutrition among tribal children is a major public health problem in India. Our study attempted to evaluate the prevalence of malnutrition among Lodha children of Paschim Medinipur, West Bengal. A cross sectional study was conducted among 165 children aged 1-14 years in a village of Paschim Medinipur district during January to March 2008. Children were considered underweight, stunting and wasting following the NCHS standards. Overall the prevalence of underweight, stunting and wasting was 33.9%, 26.1% and 19.4 %, respectively. Of these, 9.1%, 9.7% and 3.6% children were found to be severely underweight, stunted and wasted. Moreover, the prevalence of underweight and stunting was significantly higher in pre-school children compared to school going children. There is an urgent need for appropriate steps to be taken to improve nutritional status of children in this ethnic group.
[ABSTRACT]   Full text not available  [PDF] [CITATIONS]  [PubMed]
  17,422 1,548 6
Breast and cervical cancer risk in India: An update
Smita Asthana, Sonia Chauhan, Satyanarayana Labani
January-March 2014, 58(1):5-10
DOI:10.4103/0019-557X.128150  PMID:24748350
Background: Breast and cervical cancers are two major cancers among Indian women. Analysis of trends would help in planning and organization of programs for control of these cancers. Objective: The objective of the following study is to compute risk of breast and cervical cancers using updated data from different cancer registries of India and study of its trends. Materials and Methods: Data on incidence rates of breast and cervical cancers were obtained from six major cancer registries of India for the years 1982-2008 and from the recently initiated cancer registries, North Eastern Registries of India with a total of 21 registries. Annual percent change in incidence and risk in terms of one in number of women likely to develop cancer was estimated for both the cancers in various registries. Results: The annual percentage change in incidence ranged from 0.46 to 2.56 and −1.14 to −3.4 for breast and cervical cancers respectively. Trends were significant for both cancers in the registries of Chennai, Bangalore, Mumbai and Delhi except Barshi and Bhopal. North East region showed decrease in risk for breast and cervical cancers whereas increasing trend was observed in Imphal (West) and for cervical cancer in Silchar. Conclusion: North Eastern region recorded decline in the incidence of breast cancer which is contrary to the observation in other registries, which showed increase in breast cancer and decline in cervical cancer incidences.
  16,678 1,777 8
Public health informatics in India: The potential and the challenges
AV Athavale, Sanjay P Zodpey
July-September 2010, 54(3):131-136
DOI:10.4103/0019-557X.75735  PMID:21245582
Public health informatics is emerging as a new and distinct specialty area in the global scenario within the broader discipline of health informatics. The potential role of informatics in reducing health disparities in underserved populations has been identified by a number of reports from all over the world. The article discusses the scope, the limitations, and future perspective of this novice discipline in context to India. It also highlights information and technology related tools namely Geographical Information Systems, Telemedicine and Electronic Medical Record/Electronic Health Record. India needs to leverage its "technology" oriented growth until now (e.g., few satellite-based telemedicine projects, etc.) simultaneously toward development of "information"-based public health informatics systems in future. Under the rapidly evolving scenario of global public health, the future of the public health governance and population health in India would depend upon building and integrating the comprehensive and responsive domain of public health informatics.
  15,562 1,321 1
Medical equipment industry in India: Production, procurement and utilization
Indira Chakravarthi
October-December 2013, 57(4):203-207
DOI:10.4103/0019-557X.123242  PMID:24351379
This article presents information on the medical equipment industry in India-on production, procurement and utilization related activities of key players in the sector, in light of the current policies of liberalization and growth of a "health-care industry" in India. Policy approaches to medical equipment have been discussed elsewhere.
  14,169 1,483 -
Effect of very early skin to skin contact on success at breastfeeding and preventing early hypothermia in neonates
Smita Srivastava, Amit Gupta, Anjoo Bhatnagar, Sanjeev Dutta
January-March 2014, 58(1):22-26
DOI:10.4103/0019-557X.128160  PMID:24748353
Context: Birth and immediate postpartum period pose many challenges for the newborn. The neonatal mortality rates are high in India, whereas the breastfeeding rates are still low. Hence, need exists for a simple and easily applicable intervention, which may counter these challenges. Aims: The present study was undertaken to evaluate the effects of very early skin-to-skin contact (SSC), in term babies with their mothers, on success of breastfeeding and neonatal well-being. Settings and Design: Randomized control trial conducted over 2 years' period in a tertiary care hospital. Materials and Methods: Healthy babies delivered normally were included. Very early SSC between mothers and their newborns was initiated in the study group. We studied effective suckling (using modified infant breastfeeding assessment tool [IBFAT]), breastfeeding status at 6 weeks, maternal satisfaction, thermal regulation, baby's weight and morbidity. Statistical Analysis: T-test, Pearson Chi-square test and non-parametric Mann-Whitney test were used through relevant Windows SPSS software version 16.0. Results: We observed that SSC contributed to better suckling competence as measured by IBFAT score (P < 0.0001). More babies in the SSC group were exclusively breastfed at first follow-up visit (P = 0.002) and at 6 weeks (P < 0.0001). SSC led to higher maternal satisfaction rates, better temperature gain in immediate post-partum period, lesser weight loss was at discharge and at first follow-up (all P < 0.0001) and lesser morbidity than the study group (P = 0.006). Conclusion: Very early SSC is an effective intervention that improves baby's suckling competence, maternal satisfaction, breastfeeding rates and temperature control and weight patterns.
  12,293 1,175 10
Risk factors associated with MDR-TB at the onset of therapy among new cases registered with the RNTCP in Mumbai, India
Sachin R Atre, Desiree T. B. D'Souza, Tina S Vira, Anirvan Chatterjee, Nerges F Mistry
January-March 2011, 55(1):14-21
DOI:10.4103/0019-557X.82536  PMID:21727675
Background: Multidrug - resistant TB (MDR - TB) has emerged as a major threat to global TB control efforts in recent years. Facilities for its diagnosis and treatment are limited in many high - burden countries, including India. In hyper - endemic areas like Mumbai, screening for newly diagnosed cases at a higher risk of acquiring MDR - TB is necessary, for initiating appropriate and timely treatment, to prevent its further spread. Objective: To assess risk factors associated with MDR - TB among Category I, new sputum smear-positive cases, at the onset of therapy. Materials and Methods: The study applied an unmatched case - control design for 514 patients (106 cases with MDR - TB strains and 408 controls with non - MDR - TB strains). The patients were registered with the Revised National Tuberculosis Control Program (RNTCP) in four selected wards of Mumbai during April 2004 - January 2007. Data were collected through semi - structured interviews and drug susceptibility test results. Results: Multivariate analysis indicated that infection with the Beijing strain (OR = 3.06; 95% C.I. = 1.12 - 8.38; P = 0.029) and female gender (OR = 1.68; 95% C.I. = 1.02 - 2.87; P = 0.042) were significant predictors of MDR-TB at the onset of therapy. Conclusion: The study provides a starting point to further examine the usefulness of these risk factors as screening tools in identifying individuals with MDR-TB, in settings where diagnostic and treatment facilities for MDR-TB are limited.
  12,168 1,210 3
Eradicating and eliminating infectious diseases: Past, Present and Future
Jai P Narain
April-June 2011, 55(2):81-87
DOI:10.4103/0019-557X.85236  PMID:21941041
During the past 60 years, a number of infectious diseases have been targeted for eradication or elimination, with mixed results. While smallpox is the only one successfully eradicated so far, campaigns on yaws and malaria brought about a dramatic reduction in the incidence in the beginning of the campaign but ultimately could not achieve the desired goal. There is again a renewed interest in disease eradication. The World Health assembly in May 2010 passed a resolution calling for eradication of measles by 2015; the target of polio eradication still remains elusive. In view of these developments, it is appropriate time to revisit the concept of disease eradication and elimination, the achievements and failures of past eradication programmes and reasons thereof, and possibly apply these lessons while planning for the future activities. This paper based on the Dr. A.L.Saha Memorial Oration describes various infectious diseases that have been targeted for eradication or elimination since 1950s, the potential direct and indirect benefits from disease eradication, and the issues and opportunities for the future.
  11,472 761 2
Emplementation of national iron plus initiative for child health: Challanges ahead
Sila Deb
January-March 2015, 59(1):1-2
DOI:10.4103/0019-557X.152844  PMID:25758723
  11,042 866 2
An assessment of hepatitis B vaccine introduction in India: Lessons for roll out and scale up of new vaccines in immunization programs
Chandrakant Lahariya, BP Subramanya, Stephen Sosler
January-March 2013, 57(1):8-14
Background: Hepatitis B vaccine was introduced in the Universal Immunization Program (UIP) of 10 states of India in the year 2007-08. This assessment was planned and conducted to ascertain the reasons for low reported coverage of Hepatitis B (Hep B) vaccine in comparison of similarly timed diphtheria, pertussis, and tetanus (DPT) vaccine; to identify operational and programmatic challenges in new vaccine introductions, and to derive lessons for further scale up of Hep B vaccination (or for introduction of any new vaccine) in UIP of India. Materials and Methods: Purposive sampling with both quantitative and qualitative data collection. Two districts each were purposively selected from 5 of the 10 states, which introduced Hep B vaccine, in the year 2007-08. A protocol was devised and data was collected through desk review, in-depth interviews and on-site observation at state, districts and facility levels. The assessment was completed in December 2009. Results: Coverage with three doses of Hep B vaccine was lower than similarly timed three doses of DPT vaccine. Poor stock management ("stock outs or nil stocks" at various levels), incomplete recording and reporting, perceived high cost & related fear of wastage of vaccine in 10 dose vial, and incomplete knowledge amongst health functionaries about vaccination schedule were the main reasons cited for reported lower coverage. Hep B vaccine birth dose was introduced in only 3 of 5 states evaluated. The additional reasons for low Hep B birth dose coverage were lack of knowledge amongst Health Workers about birth dose administration, no mechanism for recording birth dose, and insufficient trainings, official communications, and coordination at various levels. Conclusions: This assessment documents challenges faced in the introduction of hepatitis B vaccine in UIP in India and summarizes the lessons learnt. It is concluded that for successful introduction and scale up of any new vaccine in national or state immunization program; clear and timely central level instructions and oversight and improved stock management is required. At state and district levels; quality trainings, effective supervision and monitoring, improving data recording and reporting are key factor for success. The additional focus on Hep B birth dose administration may help in improving coverage. The lessons from this assessment can possibly be utilized for future introduction and scale up of any new vaccine (or other similar interventions) in India or in any other developing country setting.
  10,759 1,102 13
Microbiological profile of milk: Impact of household practices
Amit Agarwal, Vandana Awasthi, Ajit Dua, Sanjeev Ganguly, Vivek Garg, Satwinder S Marwaha
January-March 2012, 56(1):88-94
Background: Milk is susceptible to contamination by many microorganisms including microbial pathogens responsible for causing diseases. Various processes including pasteurization, boiling or storage under refrigerated conditions are undertaken to minimize the microbial contamination of milk. Objective: This study was undertaken with an objective to evaluate the effect of household practices on the microbiological profile of milk. Materials and Methods: Milk samples of pasteurized, ultra heat treated (UHT) as well as unpasteurized milk (Vendor's milk) were collected. The effect of different storage practices and treatments on the microbiological profile (standard plate count (SPC), coliform, E. coli, Salmonella, Shigella, Staphylococcus aureus, yeast and moulds, anaerobic spore count, and Listeria monocytogenes) of milk was studied using National/ International Standard Test Methods. Results: Average SPC in vendor's milk was found very high as compared to pasteurized milk. Coliform, yeast and moulds, E. coli, and Staphylococcus aureus were detected in the samples of vendor's as well as pasteurized milk. Boiling the milk reduces SPC and kills the other microorganisms. Storage of boiled milk under room temperature or refrigerated condition resulted in a similar increase in SPC at the end of 24 h, but storage of un-boiled milk even under refrigerated conditions increased SPC manifold after 24 h. Conclusion: The pasteurization process and hygienic conditions at the milk processing units along with cold chain of milk from suppliers to end users needs improvement. Currently, even pasteurized milk does not match the microbiological standards. It is recommended that milk should be boiled before consumption and refrigerated for storage to improve its shelf life/keeping quality.
  10,097 900 3
Strengthening of primary health care: Key to deliver inclusive health care
Rajiv Yeravdekar, Vidya Rajiv Yeravdekar, MA Tutakne, Neeta P Bhatia, Murlidhar Tambe
April-June 2013, 57(2):59-64
Inequity and poverty are the root causes of ill health. Access to quality health services on an affordable and equitable basis in many parts of the country remains an unfulfilled aspiration. Disparity in health care is interpreted as compromise in 'Right to Life.' It is imperative to define 'essential health care,' which should be made available to all citizens to facilitate inclusivity in health care. The suggested methods for this include optimal utilization of public resources and increasing public spending on health care. Capacity building through training, especially training of paramedical personnel, is proposed as an essential ingredient, to reduce cost, especially in tertiary care. Another aspect which is considered very important is improvement in delivery system of health care. Increasing the role of 'family physician' in health care delivery system will improve preventive care and reduce cost of tertiary care. These observations underlie the relevance and role of Primary health care as a key to deliver inclusive health care. The advantages of a primary health care model for health service delivery are greater access to needed services; better quality of care; a greater focus on prevention; early management of health problems; and cumulative improvements in health and lower morbidity as a result of primary health care delivery.
  9,082 1,692 4
Internet addiction: Prevalence and risk factors: A cross-sectional study among college students in Bengaluru, the Silicon Valley of India
Sharmitha Krishnamurthy, Satish Kumar Chetlapalli
April-June 2015, 59(2):115-121
DOI:10.4103/0019-557X.157531  PMID:26021648
Background: The Internet is a widely used tool known to foster addictive behavior, and Internet addiction threatens to develop into a major public health issue in the near future in a rapidly developing country like India. Objective: This cross-sectional study intends to estimate prevalence, understand patterns, and evaluate risk factors for Internet addiction among college students in the city of Bengaluru, India. Materials and Methods: Out of a total of 554 data samples from eight colleges selected through multistage cluster sampling, 515 samples were analyzed. Young's 20-item Internet Addiction Test (IAT), an inventory including demographic factors and patterns of internet use, was administered. Results: This study of college students aged 16-26 years (mean ± SD 19.2 ± 2.4 years), with marginally high female representation (56%), identified 34% [95% confidence interval (CI) 29.91-38.09%] and 8% (95%, CI 5.97-10.63%) as students with mild and moderate Internet addiction respectively. Binary logistic regression found Internet addiction to be associated with male gender [adjusted odds ratio (AOR) 1.69, 95% CI, 1.081- 2.65, P = 0.021], continuous availability online (AOR 1.724, 95% CI, 1.018-2.923, P = 0.042), using the Internet less for coursework/assignments (AOR 0.415, 95% CI, 0.263-0.655, P < 0.001), making new friendships online (AOR 1.721, 95% CI, 1.785-2.849, P = 0.034), getting into relationships online (AOR 2.283, 95% CI, 1.424-3.663, P = 0.001). Conclusion: The results highlight the vulnerability of college students to Internet addiction. The findings provide explanations on the addictive behavior of the internet users, support the inclusion of "Internet Addiction" in the DSM-VI, and open up new paths for further research.
  8,284 1,327 4
Smokeless tobacco: A major public health problem in the SEA region: A review
Prakash C Gupta, Cecily S Ray, Dhirendra N Sinha, Poonam K Singh
July-September 2011, 55(3):199-209
DOI:10.4103/0019-557X.89948  PMID:22089688
Smokeless tobacco use is on the upswing in some parts of the world, including parts of SEAR. It is therefore important to monitor this problem and understand the possible consequences on public health. Material for this review was obtained from documents and data of the World Health Organization, co-authors, colleagues, and searches on key words in PubMed and on Google. Smokeless tobacco use in SEAR, as betel quid with tobacco, declined with increased marketing of cigarettes from the early twentieth century. Smokeless tobacco use began to increase in the 1970s in South Asia, with the marketing of new products made from areca nut and tobacco and convenient packaging. As a consequence, oral precancerous conditions and cancer incidence in young adults have increased significantly. Thailand's successful policies in reducing betel quid use through school health education from the 1920s and in preventing imports of smokeless tobacco products from 1992 are worth emulating by many SEAR countries. India, the largest manufacturing country of smokeless tobacco in the Region, is considering ways to regulate its production. Best practices require the simultaneous control of smokeless and smoking forms of tobacco. Governments in SEAR would do well to adopt strong measures now to control this problem.
  8,257 994 21
Influencing public health without authority
K Suresh
January-March 2012, 56(1):22-30
This paper analyzes the present processes, products and needs of post-graduate public health education for the health programming, implementation and oversight responsibilities at field level and suggests some solutions for the institutes to adopt or adapt for improving the quality of their scholars. Large number of institutions has cropped up in India in the recent years to meet the growing demand of public health specialists/practitioners in various national health projects, international development partners, national and international NGOs. Throwing open MPH courses to multi-disciplinary graduate's is a new phenomenon in India and may be a two edged sword. On one hand it is advantageous to produce multi-faceted Public health postgraduates to meet the multi tasking required, on the other hand getting all of them to a common basic understanding, demystifying technical teaching and churning out products that are acceptable to the traditional health system. These Institutions can and must influence public health in the country through producing professionals of MPH/ MD degree with right attitude and skill-mix. Engaging learners in experimentation, experience sharing projects, stepping into health professionals' roles and similar activities lead to development of relatively clear and permanent neural traces in the brain. The MPH institutes may not have all efficient faculties, for which they should try to achieve this by inviting veterans in public health and professionals from corporate health industry for interface with students on a regular basis. The corporate and public health stalwarts have the capacities to transmit the winning skills and knowledge and also inspire them to adopt or adapt in order to achieve the desired goals.
  8,629 436 1
History and evolution of public health education in India
Himanshu Negandhi, Kavya Sharma, Sanjay P Zodpey
January-March 2012, 56(1):12-16
In order to respond to the changing paradigm of public health challenges, India needs adequately trained public health professionals. Public health education is a tool to create public health professionals. Public health education in India is at cross-roads on several fronts. Traditionally, public health education in India was offered through medical schools and was open for medical graduates only. However, recently the country has witnessed an emergence of institutions offering public health programs to nonmedical background graduates. An examination of the history and current status of public health education can provide us with an insight into the evolution of the discipline in the country. This is important as in order to respond to the public health education challenges in the present time, we need to understand the historical directions taken by the discipline in the past. This review captures how the public health education efforts in the country have been aided by concerted actions within the discipline and by an enabling environment and a positive intent at the national level, whereby we can better understand the context for the recent developments in Indian public health.
  7,554 1,318 3
Reducing maternal mortality in India: Policy, equity, and quality issues
Satish Kumar
April-June 2010, 54(2):57-64
DOI:10.4103/0019-557X.73271  PMID:21119236
  7,687 1,122 6
Prevalence of dental caries and dental fluorosis among 12 and 15 years old school children in relation to fluoride concentration in drinking water in an endemic fluoride belt of Andhra Pradesh
Chandra Shekar, Manjunath Bhadravathi Cheluvaiah, Dinesh Namile
April-June 2012, 56(2):122-128
DOI:10.4103/0019-557X.99902  PMID:22910620
Background: The published literature on the prevalence and severity of dental caries and dental fluorosis among school going children in Nalgonda district - An Endemic Fluoride belt was lacking . Objectives: To assess the prevalence and severity of dental fluorosis and dental caries among 12 and 15 years old children in relation to fluoride concentration in drinking water . Settings and Design: It was a cross-sectional study, done in Nalgonda district of Andhra Pradesh, India (endemic fluoride belt) . Materials and Methods: 5 of the 59 mandals in the district of Nalgonda were selected by simple random sampling. Then, 3 schools from each of these selected mandals were chosen at random. All the eligible 6 th and 9 th standard children were considered for final analysis. The demographic and other relevant information was collected by 3 trained and calibrated dentists, using a structured questionnaire. Dental caries were recorded using dentition status and treatment needs and fluorosis were recorded by Dean's fluorosis index. The statistical analysis was done using SPSS version 16. Results: The prevalence of dental caries among children was 56.3% with the highest in below optimal fluoride area (71.3%) and lowest in optimal fluoride area (24.3%). The prevalence of dental fluorosis was 71.5%. The prevalence was 39.7% in below optimal fluoride area and 100% in high and very fluoride areas. The prevalence and severity of fluorosis increased with increasing fluoride concentration. The caries experience was more among boys than girls. Conclusion: There was a negative correlation between dental caries and fluoride concentration for the entire study population. However, in high fluoride areas, there was a positive correlation between fluoride concentration and dental caries. Water defluoridation on an urgent basis is a priority here than water fluoridation, because the prevalence and severity of dental flurorosis is very high.
  7,065 1,514 5
Contaminants in milk and impact of heating: An assessment study
Vandana Awasthi, Sanjivan Bahman, Lalit K Thakur, Santosh Kumar Singh, Ajit Dua, Sanjeev Ganguly
January-March 2012, 56(1):95-99
Background: The major contaminants usually encountered in milk and milk products include pesticide residues, heavy metals, and aflatoxin M1 (AFM1). Primarily, milk get contaminated before milching, from the cattle feed, from sources/materials used during the processing of milk as well as improper handling of the milk during the pre- and postprocessing period. Objective: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of household practices on milk contaminants. Materials and Methods: Samples of pasteurized as well as unpasteurized milk (Vendor's milk) were analyzed for AFM1, pesticide residues, and heavy metals. Simulating the household practices, the impact of boiling on these contaminants was assessed. Results: The contaminant Aflatoxin M1 (AFM1) was detected at a concentration ranging from 0.071-0.075 ppb in unpasteurized as well as pasteurized milk samples analyzed during the course of study. Moreover, boiling had no impact on the quantity of AFM1 present in the milk. Pesticides and heavy metal contents were found to be within acceptable limits in all the milk samples tested. Conclusion: Mycotoxins especially aflatoxins in cattle feed and their consequential presence in milk and milk products is a serious concern world over as they are reported carcinogens. These fungal toxins are resistant to high temperatures and may lead to various health hazards. Preventive steps must be taken at each stage to ensure good quality of milk and milk products free from these contaminants. Awareness programs and education for the dairy farmers and milk processors may be helpful in this regard.
  7,621 919 5