‘Mummy won’t wake up’: Harrowing 999 call of sobbing schoolgirl, 5, who saved her mother’s life by talking operators through symptoms after she collapsed in the kitchen

  • Sienna Adderley was watching CBeebies when her mother began shaking
  • Parents had taught her how to dial 999 after mother had similar episodes
  • Sienna told operators: ‘She’s collapsed and now she is shaking’
  • Sienna was tearful but calm until paramedics arrived at home in Rugby
  • Mother-of-two Katie, 32, is now being tested to diagnose her condition
  • Sienna said: ‘I’m glad I helped my mummy because I love her lots’

A five-year-old schoolgirl has been hailed a hero after she made a tearful 999 call to save her mother’s life when she collapsed in the family home.

Sienna Adderley’s mother Katie, 32, was getting her ready for school when she collapsed and started shaking in her kitchen in Rugby, Warwickshire.

With no one else around Sienna picked up the phone and called the emergency services – remaining calm enough through her sobs to tell the operator her mother’s symptoms.

Scroll down to listen to the 999 call

Little hero: Sienna Adderley's mother Katie, 32 (right) was getting her ready for school when she collapsed and started shaking in her kitchen in Rugby, Warwickshire. Sienna (left) sprang into action and called 999

Little hero: Sienna Adderley’s mother Katie, 32 (right) was getting her ready for school when she collapsed and started shaking in her kitchen in Rugby, Warwickshire. Sienna (left) sprang into action and called 999

Collected: Sienna, pictured at home with her mother, remained calm enough through her sobs to tell the operator her mother's symptoms. She was too small to open the front door to emergency service workers

Collected: Sienna, pictured at home with her mother, remained calm enough through her sobs to tell the operator her mother’s symptoms. She was too small to open the front door to emergency service workers

The call, which has been released by emergency services with the permission of Sienna’s family, captures the moment she came to her mother’s aid.

‘I can’t wake her up,’ she told the operator. ‘She is collapsed on the floor and now she is shaking. She is lying in the kitchen’.

Because Sienna was too small to open the door, emergency services pinpointed her mother’s address before breaking in and treating her during the incident last Thursday.

Sienna, who attends Eastlands Primary School in Rugby, said: ‘My mummy was in the kitchen and I was watching CBeebies when she collapsed.

Heart-wrenching 999 call of five-year-old Sienna Adderley

‘It was very scary but my dad told me if she got poorly when I wasn’t there then I should call 999.

‘I told them where I lived and had to look after my brother too. I was crying but tried not to be frightened.

‘When the police came a lady policewoman took me upstairs and we played with my toys in my room while they made her better.

Brave: Sienna said her father had told her to phone 999 if her mother 'got poorly' when he wasn't there

Brave: Sienna said her father had told her to phone 999 if her mother ‘got poorly’ when he wasn’t there

‘Everybody is saying I’m very brave, which is very nice. I’m glad I helped my mummy because I love her lots.’

Mrs Adderley, a former playschool supervisor who also has a two-year-old son Riley with partner Carl Green, 33, was treated at the scene and said she had her daughter to thank.

She taught Sienna how to dial 999 because she had suffered similar collapses in the past. Doctors initially thought she might have epilepsy, but are still attempting to diagnose her condition.

‘My husband and I have always encouraged Sienna to be involved if I’m ill so she would not be worried and would know what to do,’ she said.

‘Thank goodness Sienna was here to help me. You don’t know what might happen to you if you don’t get the treatment you need.

‘Usually Sienna would call her daddy but she had no answer, so she decided to ring 999. She has never had to ring them before although we did show her what to do in the past.

‘She sounds very distressed but by the end of call she sounded very confident and she was pretty calm considering the circumstances.

‘She was very brave and I am so proud of her. Not only was she trying to see to me, she had her little brother to look after as well. She is our little hero.’

Mrs Adderley added the community has pulled together to raise £900 for a new front door.

It was the first time Sienna had called 999. Police have described her as a ‘superstar’ and are planning to present the brave youngster with a certificate at a school assembly.

PC James Graham, who attended the incident, added: ‘Police officers from Rugby Response and Safer Neighbourhoods Team attended an incident reported by a 999 call.

‘The caller was five-year-old Sienna reporting that her mum was ill.

Operator: A 999 control centre (file image). PC James Graham, of Warwickshire Police, said: 'All the attending officers thought Sienna was fantastic and a superstar. She just took it all in her stride'

Operator: A 999 control centre (file image). PC James Graham, of Warwickshire Police, said: ‘All the attending officers thought Sienna was fantastic and a superstar. She just took it all in her stride’

‘That in itself is amazing but she also stayed on the line while checking her mum and looking after her younger brother.

‘All the attending officers thought she was fantastic and a superstar.

My mummy was in the kitchen and I was watching CBeebies when she collapsed. It was very scary but my dad told me if she got poorly when I wasn’t there then I should call 999
Five-year-old Sienna Adderley

‘She just took it all in her stride. She deserves recognition for her actions and her parents are rightly proud of her.

‘Sienna used the 999 service, exactly how it is meant to be used, and is a shining example to others.

‘We would encourage other parents to teach their children from an early age, how and when they should call 999, as this incident show’s how vital it can be should an emergency arise.’

A West Midlands Ambulance Service spokesman said: ‘We were called by police to Brodie Close in Rugby to treat a woman following a medical incident.

‘She received treatment by paramedics and recovered whilst at home.

‘We learned from our police colleagues that the patients five year old daughter had raised the alarm by calling 999 and we would like to congratulate her on her brave actions.

‘All parents are asked to teach their children about calling 999 in an emergency as one day it may just save someone’s life.’

‘MUMMY’S SHAKING’: FULL TRANSCRIPT OF HARROWING 999 CALL

Harrowing: A 999 operator spoke to Sienna as she described her mother's symptoms (file photo)

Harrowing: A 999 operator spoke to Sienna as she described her mother’s symptoms (file photo)

Sienna: I am trying to wake her up but I can’t.

Operator: You are trying to wake her up but you can’t?

Sienna: Yeah

Operator: Alright, Sienna, okay. We will see if we can get somebody round straightaway. Where is mummy now? Is she upstairs in bed?

Sienna: Collapsed on the floor.

Operator: She is collapsed on the floor?

Sienna: And now she is shaking.

Operator: Now she is shaking?

Sienna: Yeah

Operator: (to colleague) Okay, ambulance 58 please Natalie (to Sienna) Alright Sienna, just stay on the line for me. So where is mummy now then?

Sienna: She is lying in the kitchen.

Operator: Is she lying on the floor, is she?

Sienna: Yeah

Operator: Okay, alright Sienna. Alright, you keep talking to me. Are you able to open the door if policemen get there to let them in?

Sienna: No

Operator: You are not?

Sienna: No

Operator: Okay, is daddy there?

Sienna: No, he is at work.

Operator: Daddy’s at work, alright.

Sienna: [inaudible]

Operator: You can’t what, sorry sweetheart?

Sienna: [inaudible]

Operator: Is mummy talking at all?

Sienna: No

Operator: Okay, just bear with me a minute.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2938033/Mummy-won-t-wake-Harrowing-999-call-sobbing-schoolgirl-5-saves-mother-s-life-talking-operators-symptoms-collapsed-kitchen.html#ixzz3Qi4PEIO3

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More than 1m people with asthma may NOT have the condition and could be taking medication unnecessarily

  • NICE says there is no evidence a third of asthma patients have the disease
  • Watchdog is concerned they are receiving treatment they don’t need
  • Now advises doctors to carry out clinical tests before diagnosing patients
  • This includes a spirometer – which measures volume of airway obstruction
  • However asthma charities say patients aren’t receiving adequate care 

More than a million people receiving treatment for asthma may have been misdiagnosed, experts warned today.

Almost a third of the 4.1m people treated for asthma in the UK did not show any ‘clear evidence’ of the incurable condition, according to the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) .

This means they may be receiving unnecessary treatment.

However, asthma charities warned diagnosing asthma is difficult and the majority of patients ‘do not receive adequate care’.

And experts cautioned that no one diagnosed with the condition should stop taking prescribed medication unless instructed by a healthcare professional.

More than a million people may have been wrongly diagnosed as having asthma - and may be receiving unnecessary treatment

More than a million people may have been wrongly diagnosed as having asthma – and may be receiving unnecessary treatment

NICE has drafted new guidance, its first for asthma, for doctors in England to improve the accuracy of diagnoses.

The guideline makes it clear that a clinical test should be carried out to diagnose asthma, as well as checking for signs and symptoms.

It said the first test should be carried out using a spirometer, a machine which measures how much and how fast a person breathes out.

Further breath tests should be carried out depending on the results from spirometry and the patient’s age.

For adults and young people over five years, an FeNO test should be carried out.

This is a test which checks for levels of nitric oxide, a gas which is found in larger volumes in people with asthma.

A BDR test4 which measures whether standard medicines which widen the airways of the lung are of benefit

WHAT IS ASTHMA?

Asthma is a common long-term condition that can cause coughing, wheezing, chest tightness and breathlessness.

The severity of these symptoms varies from person to person.

Asthma can be controlled well in most people most of the time, although some people may have more persistent problems.

Occasionally, asthma symptoms can get gradually or suddenly worse. This is known as an ‘asthma attack’, although doctors sometimes use the term ‘exacerbation’.

Severe attacks may require hospital treatment and can be life threatening, although this is unusual.

Asthma is caused by inflammation of the small tubes, called bronchi, which carry air in and out of the lungs.

When a person come into contact with something that irritates the lungs – known as a trigger – the airways become narrow, the muscles around them tighten, and there is an increase in the production of sticky mucus (phlegm).

The reason why some people develop asthma is not fully understood, although it is known that a person is more likely to develop it if they have a family history of the condition.

Asthma can develop at any age, including in young children and elderly people.

 Source: NHS Choices

The treatment of children under five should be based on professional judgement and observation until the child is old enough to take clinical tests.

Around 1 in 10 of adults with asthma develops the condition because they are exposed to certain substances, such as chemicals or dust, in their workplace.

The draft guideline also recommends that healthcare professionals ask employed people how their symptoms are affected by work, to check if they may have occupational asthma.

During each review, the healthcare professionals should check the patient is able to use their inhaler correctly and also consider using a questionnaire to get a better estimate of how well a person is doing, it added.

Professor Mark Baker, director of clinical practice at NICE, said: ‘Asthma is a long-term incurable condition that affects millions of people of all ages.

‘If left untreated, asthma attacks can be life threatening.

‘However, with appropriate treatment and thoughtful monitoring, most people will be able to successfully control their symptoms and be spared from serious harm.

‘Accurate diagnosis of asthma has been a significant problem which means that people may be wrongly diagnosed or cases might be missed in others.

‘Our aim with this guideline is to give clarity and set out the most clinical and cost effective ways to diagnose and monitor asthma based on the best available evidence.’

Asthma is one of the world’s most common long-lasting diseases in childhood, affecting 1.1m children and 4.3m adults in the UK.

Around 10 per cent of the 5.4 million people in the UK with asthma have the most severe form, which leaves them unable to control their symptoms, resulting in frequent attacks, despite taking multiple high-strength medicines.

Experts today highlighted the need for respiratory diseases to be diagnosed accurately.

Professor Anna Murphy, a consultant pharmacist and spokesperson for the Royal Pharmaceutical Society said: ‘I think there are issues in primary care in diagnosing asthma.

Asthma UK explains what they do to help sufferers

NICE says doctors should now carry out clinical test as well as observations in order to diagnose asthma. The  first test should be carried out using a spirometer, a machine which measures how much and how fast a person breathes out (pictured)

NICE says doctors should now carry out clinical test as well as observations in order to diagnose asthma. The  first test should be carried out using a spirometer, a machine which measures how much and how fast a person breathes out (pictured)

‘We need to do a thorough history and do objective tests to confirm the findings we suspect.

‘Unfortunately we’re often not doing these tests and so people are being misdiagnosed.

‘Getting the diagnosis right before we get suggest treatment for any disease is important.

‘If we’re given asthma treatment for breathlessness and it’s not working, it could be that the person has COPD, anaemia, or heart failure, which will need to be treated appropriately.

‘Other people with these conditions could slip through the net.’

There aren’t too many risks for people taking inhalers at the doses generally prescribed by doctors and pharmacists, she added, but as they are steroid inhalers they could induce side-effects of oral thrush and a hoarse voice.

‘There’s also a cost to the NHS of wasted treatment,’ she continued.

However, she said asthma can be fatal and so stressed people diagnosed with the condition should not stop their treatment without the advice of a healthcare professional.

‘We can’t miss the fact that people die from asthma, so I don’t want people to think “I don’t have asthma” and stop their treatment.

‘It’s a variable disease which will be well-controlled at some points, but they will have symptoms such as breathlessness, coughing at night, and wheezing at other times.

Experts said people misdiagnosed with asthma could actually be suffering breathlessness for a different reason, such as COPD, lung diseases anaemia or heart failure, which should be treated appropriately

Experts said people misdiagnosed with asthma could actually be suffering breathlessness for a different reason, such as COPD, lung diseases anaemia or heart failure, which should be treated appropriately

‘What we would recommend for anyone with well-controlled disease, is that it’s good practice for the healthcare professional to slowly start reducing their treatments, in a controlled way, so the need less.

‘They would be monitored to make sure people are safe.’

Dr Nick Robinson, a respiratory physician and medical advisor for the British Lung Foundation echoed these concerns.

He told Mailonline: ‘Tens of hundreds of thousands of people are taking inhalers they don’t need is wasteful.

‘Some people with asthma could end up with high doses of inhaled steroids, when the correct dose for them is zero.’

Commenting on the draft guideline, Kay Boycott, chief executive at Asthma UK, said: ‘We welcome the NICE guideline for the improvement of asthma diagnosis in the hope that this will help people with asthma receive more personalised care.

‘Asthma has many complex causes which is one of the reasons why it is sometimes difficult to get a definitive diagnosis.

‘It is also a highly variable condition that can change throughout someone’s life or even week by week, meaning treatment can change over time.

‘For anyone with an asthma diagnosis, it is vital they have the right medication and a plan to better manage their condition and any asthma attacks.’

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2929353/1m-asthma-cases-misdiagnosed-fear.html#ixzz3Q7hZiol7

Skipping breakfast can lead to TWO STONE of weight gain over a year

  • Survey reveals those who skip breakfast three times a week are twice as likely to snack on a packet of crisps and chocolate bar mid-morning
  • One in 10 people never eat breakfast, with more than a third admitting to skipping the first meal of the day at some point during the week
  • An average 35g bowl of cereal with semi-skimmed milk is around 181 kcal
  • But a 33g packet of crisps and 49g chocolate bar total 433 kcal
Those people who skip breakfast three times a day are twice as likely to snack on unhealthy treats mid-morning, a new survey has revealed

Those people who skip breakfast three times a day are twice as likely to snack on unhealthy treats mid-morning, a new survey has revealed

People who skip breakfast three times a week are twice as likely to gorge on an extra 252 calories a day, new research has today revealed.

Missing the first meal of the day increases the urge to snack and could cause a person to gain up to 26lb – almost two stone – a year, if the extra calories are not burned off through exercise.

A survey, conducted for Breakfast Week, revealed the most popular mid-morning snacks for breakfast skippers are crisps, chocolate and biscuits.

One in 10 people do not eat breakfast at all during the week.

And more than a third – 37 per cent – admit to skipping the first meal of the day at some point during the working week.

That is despite the survey, of 2,000 adults, revealing 45 per cent of breakfast skippers admitting it makes them feel hungry mid-morning, 30 per cent complaining of being tired and lacking in energy and 14 per cent revealing it leaves them feeling grumpy.

The main reasons for missing breakfast are not feeling hungry first thing (30 per cent) or sacrificing eating for extra time in bed (23 per cent).

Meanwhile just over one in 10 (12 per cent) say they simply forget to eat breakfast, with the same number admitting they are too busy doing household chores.

The survey also revealed how breakfast is key in affecting your food choices for the rest of the day.

Those who skip the meal are more likely to opt for a chocolate bar (27 per cent) and a can of sugary fizzy drink (one in 10) with their lunch, than those who eat breakfast every day (13 per cent and four per cent respectively).

Dietitian Azmina Govindji said missing breakfast can cause a person’s blood sugar levels to drop, encouraging them to reach for a snack that will provide instant gratification.

‘This research suggests that those who are missing breakfast are more likely to have unhealthier eating habits during the rest of that morning period,’ she told MailOnline.

‘Perhaps a low blood sugar level prompts people to opt for something that is going to give them an instant boost, like a biscuit or chocolate bar, but this can be counter-productive, and offers little nutritional value.

‘Or perhaps they’re so hungry that they reach for the most convenient food to fill them up.

‘Unfortunately convenient snacks don’t always tend to be the healthiest and can be laden with sugar, salt and fat.

‘The extra 252 calories that we’ve calculated people can be consuming if they miss breakfast and choose a chocolate bar and a 33g bag of crisps as snacks, can, over time, lead to significant weight gain if it’s not compensated for in activity.’

The extra 252 calories is the difference between a person eating an average 35g bowl of branflakes cereal with 135ml of semi-skimmed milk (181 calories), and a 33g bag of crisps (173 calories) and a 49g chocolate bar (260 calories) – two of the most popular snacks among those missing breakfast.

Those who miss breakfast are likely to reach for a packet of crisps and chocolate bar mid-morning. They are also more likely to then add a packet of crisps and fizzy drink at lunch

Those who miss breakfast are likely to reach for a packet of crisps and chocolate bar mid-morning. They are also more likely to then add a packet of crisps and fizzy drink at lunch

Those who miss breakfast are likely to reach for a packet of crisps and chocolate bar mid-morning. They are also more likely to then add a packet of crisps and fizzy drink at lunch

How to swap junk food for healthy, delicious snacks (related)

Researchers calculated the potential weight gain, assuming a person eats an extra 252 calories every day – totalling 91,980 calories every year.

Assuming the extra calories are not matched with any physical activity or a reduced total intake over the course of each day, using the assumption that an extra 3,500 calories equate to an extra 1lb in weight, there is the potential for a person to gain 26lbs a year.

Ms Govindji added: ‘Research shows that eating breakfast can help improve mood, energy and concentration.

‘Studies have also demonstrated that people who eat breakfast are more likely to be in a healthy weight range than those who do not.

‘If you’re someone that simply can’t face eating first thing, then it’s fine to have your breakfast a little later, perhaps when you get to work.

‘Or opt for something light like a small bowl of cereal or a piece of fruit.

‘There are lots of choices out there, many of which are quick and easy, so ideal for those who like to spend as much time as possible in bed; it’s a case of finding something that works for you.’

Breakfast Week, a not-for-profit campaign organised by the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board, runs this week, until Sunday and is in its 16th year.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2927963/Do-regularly-skip-breakfast-twice-likely-snack-extra-250-calories-day-cause-TWO-STONE-weight-gain-year.html#ixzz3Q49bgm20

Epilepsy charities urge people to report side-effects of new medicines to Yellow Card scheme

Epilepsy charities are urging people to report any adverse side effects they’ve experienced which could be linked to switching between brands of the same anti-epileptic drug (AED).

Epilepsy Society and Epilepsy Action want more people to use the Government’s yellow card scheme if they think an AED brand switch may have caused any of the following problems:

  • a breakthrough seizure
  • different seizures
  • worse or more seizures
  • worse side-effects.

The charities have issued this advice following a survey of people with epilepsy that they jointly carried out last year. The survey gathered people’s experiences of switching to a different version of the same medication. Information from the survey has been included in a report the charities have prepared for the Medicines and Healthcare Regulatory Authority (MHRA). It is hoped that this will result in improved prescribing guidance for people with epilepsy.

The survey showed that 65% of respondents said they had been prescribed a different version of their medicine in the last two years. Almost two thirds (62%) of people who had taken the new medicine reported a negative response to it, such as breakthrough seizures or worse side effects.

These results support other evidence suggesting that switching versions of an anti-epileptic drug can cause worsening seizure control and/or side-effects. These issues can have a huge impact on the lives of people with epilepsy, affecting employment, education and social life. Both charities have campaigned in the past for people with epilepsy to receive the same version of anti-epileptic drug (AED) unless there is a clinical reason for the change.

Importance of registering

Sarah Vibert, Epilepsy Society’s director of external affairs, said: ‘The Yellow Card Scheme is vital in helping the Medicines and Healthcare Regulatory Authority (MHRA) monitor the safety of all healthcare products in the UK. Historically, there have been very few cases of people with epilepsy contacting the Yellow Card scheme if they’ve suffered a bad experience when changing brands of the same AED.

‘We want to make people aware how important it is to register any problems they’ve encountered. This would help to ensure that AED switching is properly monitored and reviewed.’

Concerns for health and wellbeing

Simon Wigglesworth, Epilepsy Action’s deputy chief executive said: ‘We have had concerns for a number of years about the impact that switching anti-epileptic drugs can have on the health and wellbeing of people with epilepsy.

‘The survey results show that people with epilepsy are experiencing problems as a result of receiving a different version of their medication. It is sometimes assumed that all versions of a drug are identical. However, subtle differences to the way a drug is formulated may have profound effects. That’s why it’s so important that people report problems to MHRA and enable them to identify any potential issues with prescribed medication.’

Anyone who believes that they are experiencing unwanted side-effects as a result of their medicine can report it to the MHRA’s Yellow Card scheme by calling freephone 0808 100 3352 or visiting yellowcard.mhra.gov.uk (opens new window).

Read more about the Yellow Card scheme and how to report problems in our magazine Epilepsy Review.

Popular sleep remedies and hayfever pills ‘more than DOUBLE the risk of Alzheimer’s’

  • Sleep remedies, hayfever pills and anti-depressants are linked to dementia
  • The risk is greatest when high doses are taken over several years
  • Risk was 54 per cent higher for people taking the highest doses 
  • Found a link between dementia and antihistamines Piriton and Benadryl
  • Link was found with sleep remedy Nytol and anti-depressant Doxepin
  • Also found with Nytol and Ditropan – treatment for an overactive bladder

Older people taking over-the-counter hayfever pills and commonly prescribed medicines are at greater risk of Alzheimer’s, warn researchers.

They found a link between dementia and the antihistamine drugs Piriton and Benadryl, as well as sleep remedy Nytol, and older antidepressants.

The risk is greatest when high doses are taken over several years, says the US study.

Popular hayfever pills such as Benadryl and Piriton, sleep remedy Nytol, Ditropan - which is used to treat an overactive bladder, and the antidepressant doxepin have all been linked to dementia 

Popular hayfever pills such as Benadryl and Piriton, sleep remedy Nytol, Ditropan – which is used to treat an overactive bladder, and the antidepressant doxepin have all been linked to dementia

These anticholinergic medications affect the brain by blocking a key chemical messenger called acetylcholine, which has a range of functions in the body.

Up to half the UK’s elderly population are prescribed at least one medication with anti-cholinergic properties, especially in care homes.

US study leader Professor Shelly Gray, director of the geriatric pharmacy program at the University of Washington School of Pharmacy, said: ‘Older adults should be aware that many medications – including some available without a prescription, such as over-the-counter sleep aids – have strong anticholinergic effects.

‘And they should tell their health-care providers about all their over-the-counter use.

‘Of course, no one should stop taking any therapy without consulting their health-care provider.

‘Health-care providers should regularly review their older patients’ drug regimens – including over-the-counter medications – to look for chances to use fewer anticholinergic medications at lower doses.’

Research last year linked the use of anticholinergic drugs and mental impairment in the elderly.

But the new study, published in the journal Jama Internal Medicine, is the first to show the higher the dose, the higher the risk of dementia.

Researchers tracked the health of 3,434 men and women aged 65 and over for around seven years while monitoring their use of anticholinergic drugs.

Of the total, 637 developed Alzheimer’s disease and 160 other forms of dementia.

WHICH MEDICINES ARE LINKED TO ALZHEIMER’S?

Researchers found a link between anticholinergic medications and dementia.

Anticholinergic medications affect the brain by blocking a key chemical messenger called acetycholine, which has a range of functions in the body.

People taking the following drugs for more than three years have an increased risk of dementia:

  • At least 10 milligrams(mg) per day of the antidepressant doxepin,
  • Four mg per day of diphenhydramine (Nytol, Benadryl) or
  • Five mg per day of oxybutynin (Ditropan) for overactive bladder

For those taking the highest doses of these drugs, the risk of dementia was increased by 54 per cent after seven years, compared with no use.

The risk of Alzheimer’s – the most common form of dementia – was increased by 63 per cent.

For those taking the highest doses of anticholinergic drugs over the study period, the relative risk of dementia was increased by a statistically significant 54 per cent compared with no use.

The risk of Alzheimer’s was raised by 63 per cent, says the study.

People taking at least 10 milligrams(mg) per day of the antidepressant doxepin, four mg per day of diphenhydramine (Nytol, Benadryl) or five mg per day of oxybutynin (Ditropan) for overactive bladder for more than three years would have an increased risk of developing dementia.

Substitute drugs that do not have anticholinergic effects include selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressants such as Prozac and newer antihistamine allergy treatments such as loratadine (Claritin), said Professor Gray.

She said: ‘If providers need to prescribe a medication with anticholinergic effects because it is the best therapy for their patient, they should use the lowest effective dose, monitor the therapy regularly to ensure it’s working, and stop the therapy if it’s ineffective.’

The researchers pointed out that anticholinergic effects in animals had been shown to increase levels of beta-amyloid protein in the brain, one of the hallmarks of Alzheimer’s.

Anticholinergic drugs block a nervous system chemical transmitter called acetylcholine, leading to side effects that may include drowsiness, blurred vision and poor memory. People with Alzheimer’s disease are known to lack acetylcholine.

The study suggested the raised dementia risk persisted even after people stopped taking anticholinergic drugs.

The study concluded: ‘Given the devastating consequences of dementia, informing older adults about this potentially modifiable risk would allow them to choose alternative products and collaborate with their health care professionals to minimise overall anticholinergic use.’

Dr Simon Ridley, head of research at Alzheimer’s Research UK charity, said: ‘This large study adds to some existing evidence linking anticholinergic drugs to a small increased risk of dementia, but the results don’t tell us that these drugs cause the condition.

‘Continued research to shed light on these links will be important for helping understand the benefits and potential risks of these drugs.

For people who took the highest doses of these drugs for the seven-year study period, the risk of dementia was increased by a statistically significant 54 per cent compared with no use. The risk of Alzheimer's was raised by 63 per cent

For people who took the highest doses of these drugs for the seven-year study period, the risk of dementia was increased by a statistically significant 54 per cent compared with no use. The risk of Alzheimer’s was raised by 63 per cent

‘In the meantime, anyone who is worried about the medication they are taking should seek advice from a doctor or pharmacist before stopping a course of treatment.’

The researchers compared the use of different anticholinergic drugs by calculating how many days each participant would have taken any one of the drugs for.

They then analysed the risk of developing dementia for people who had taken the drugs for different amounts of time. The link was only clear for those who had taken drugs for three years or more.

Dr Doug Brown, director of research and development at Alzheimer’s Society charity, said: ‘There have been concerns that regular use by older people of certain medications with anticholinergic effects, such as sleep aids and hayfever treatments, can increase the risk of dementia in certain circumstances, which this study supports.

‘However, it is still unclear whether this is the case and if so, whether the effects seen are a result of long-term use or several episodes of short-term use.

‘We would encourage doctors and pharmacists to be aware of this potential link and would advise anyone concerned about this to speak to their GP before

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2927002/Popular-sleep-remedies-hayfever-pills-DOUBLE-risk-Alzheimer-s.html#ixzz3PxpMhVw4

Chef, 30, who ignored smear test letters for EIGHT YEARS is left infertile by cervical cancer treatment

  • Lindsay Davies says she received her first smear request aged 21
  • But she found the thought of being examine by doctors ’embarrassing’
  • Later had two children but still didn’t attend screening appointments 
  • In 2013, experience heavy bleeding after sex – and tests revealed cancer
  • Needed hysterectomy to remove the tumour – which has left her infertile  

A young woman who ignored requests for smear tests for eight years has been left infertile after treatment for cervical cancer.

Lindsay Davies received the devastating news last year when she was just 29.

She admits she was ’embarrassed’ by the thought of medical staff examining her – so repeatedly threw requests from her GP in the bin.

It was only when she and her husband began trying for a third child – and she suffered heavy bleeding – that tests revealed she had cervical cancer.

Lindsay Davies with her husband, Michael, admits she 'embarrassed' by the thought of medical staff examining her - so repeatedly ignored cervical screening requests from her GP 

Lindsay Davies with her husband, Michael, admits she ’embarrassed’ by the thought of medical staff examining her – so repeatedly ignored cervical screening requests from her GP

It was only when she suffered heavy bleeding after sex that tests revealed she had cervical cancer. In March last year, she underwent a surgery to have her womb, cervix, fallopian tubes and part of her vagina removed

It was only when she suffered heavy bleeding after sex that tests revealed she had cervical cancer. In March last year, she underwent a surgery to have her womb, cervix, fallopian tubes and part of her vagina removed

While the cancer hadn’t spread beyond the cervix, the tumour was larger than 4cm across.

In March 2014, she underwent a radical hysterectomy at King’s Mill Hospital, Mansfield, Nottinghamshire.

This is where the womb, cervix, tissue around the cervix, fallopian tubes, pelvic lymph nodes, the upper part of the vagina and sometimes the ovaries are removed.

Speaking for the first time, Mrs Davies, who is trained as a chef, said: ‘I put having a smear off for so long.

‘But now I can’t have any more children – and I am only 30.

‘My husband Michael and I were trying for a child when I was diagnosed.

‘I would urge people not to be embarrassed – it’s only 10 minutes of your time and it’s really not worth missing it.’

Mrs Davies’ story comes as figures released today revealed the number of young women diagnosed with cervical cancer has soared in the last decade.

Over the last 10 years, cases of the disease in women aged 25 to 29 have soared by 59.2 per cent.

Mrs Davies, who is mother to Isabel, seven, and Darcie-Rae, 18 months, first ignored a smear test request aged 22.'I just kept putting it off,' she said. Today, she urged other women not to behave as she had 

Mrs Davies, who is mother to Isabel, seven, and Darcie-Rae, 18 months, first ignored a smear test request aged 22.’I just kept putting it off,’ she said. Today, she urged other women not to behave as she had

It was while pregnant with Darcie-Rae (right) that Mrs Davies she started bleeding - and the problem became progessively worse. Today she said: 'The children are a comfort. I know I am lucky, I don't need telling that'

It was while pregnant with Darcie-Rae (right) that Mrs Davies she started bleeding – and the problem became progessively worse. Today she said: ‘The children are a comfort. I know I am lucky, I don’t need telling that’

Meanwhile in the last year rates have risen 4.8 per cent, as one million women failed to attend smear test appointments.

The NHS offers a free cervical screening test to all women aged 25-64 every three to five years.

It is not a test for cervical cancer, but it identifies early abnormalities which, if left untreated, could develop into cancer of the cervix (neck of the womb).

A sample of cells is taken from the cervix for analysis and sent to a laboratory for analysis. Those whose cells show abnormalities are called back for further investigation and, if necessary, treatment.

RISING NUMBER OF YOUNG WOMEN SHUNNING SMEAR TESTS

The number of young women diagnosed with cervical cancer has soared in the last decade, as new figures reveal more than one million failed to attend smear tests last year.

Over the last 10 years, cases of the disease in women aged 25 to 29 have soared by 59.2 per cent.

Meanwhile in the last year rates have risen 4.8 per cent, as one million women failed to attend smear test appointments.

Eight women in the UK are diagnosed each day and cervical cancer is the most common form of the disease in under 35s.

A leading charity is today urging women to ensure they attend their regular smear tests, raising concerns that the uptake of screening has fallen to an all-time low.

While some women admit they are too embarrassed to go for screening tests, others said they are concerned it will be painful, while some said they don’t think the tests are necessary.

SYMPTOMS

The most common symptom of cervical cancer is bleeding from the vagina at times other than when a woman is having a period.

Women may have bleeding:

Between periods

After or during sex

At any time if you are past the menopause

Some women also have:

A vaginal discharge that smells unpleasant

Discomfort or pain during sex

While some women admit they are too embarrassed to go for screening tests, others polled in today’s research said they were concerned it will be painful, while some said they don’t think the tests are necessary.

Eight women in the UK are diagnosed each day and cervical cancer is the most common form of the disease in under 35s.

Mrs Davies, who is mother to Isabel, seven, and Darcie-Rae, 18 months, first ignored a smear test request aged 22.

‘I just kept putting it off,’ she said.

I don’t like going to the doctors or the hospital because I am uncomfortable with it.

‘The thought of it was embarrassing – I know that sounds stupid, given the fact I’ve had children.

‘Plus there never seemed to be the time.’

It was when she was pregnant with Darcie-Rae that Mrs Davies she started bleeding.

And things only got worse after her daughter was born in December 2013.

‘It was after sex,’ Mrs Davies said. ‘One day it wouldn’t stop.’

On Christmas Eve 2013 she had her first smear test ever and two weeks later, at King’s Mill Hospital, Nottinghamshire, she was diagnosed with cancer.

She continued: ‘When they said it was cervical cancer, I didn’t feel anything.

‘I felt numb. My husband started to cry, but I didn’t feel anything.’

An MRI revealed the tumour was 1.5cm by 2cm at that stage.

While she avoided chemotherapy and radiation, doctors told Mrs Davies she would require a radical hysterectomy.

‘We were trying for children – it was so hard,’ she said. ‘But I am alive and I will live to see my children grow up.’

Surgeons also managed to keep Mrs Davies’ ovaries, meaning she will not experience an early menopause.

‘The children are a comfort. I know I am lucky, I don’t need telling that.

‘But I wish I hadn’t neglected my smear – don’t delay it for eight years like I did.’

Mrs Davies has been told she is now cancer-free and has check-ups every three months.

Mrs Davies is now supporting Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust’s Smear for Smear campaign.

People are being asked to smear lipstick across their face and show their support.

THE CERVICAL SCREENING PROGRAMME – WHAT IS IT AND WHO IS ELIGIBLE?

The NHS offers a free cervical screening test to all women aged 25-64 every three to five years.

It is not a test for cervical cancer, but it identifies early abnormalities which, if left untreated, could develop into cancer of the cervix (neck of the womb).

A sample of cells is taken from the cervix for analysis and sent to a laboratory for analysis. Those whose cells show abnormalities are called back for further investigation and, if necessary, treatment.

Currently the test is not offered routinely to women aged younger than 25 because cervical cancer is so rare in women that young.

According to Cancer Research UK statistics, not a single woman under the age of 20 died from cervical cancer between 2009-2011.

The NHS offers free cervical screening tests to all women aged 25 to 64 every three to five years. The test detects early abnormalities which, if left untreated, can develop into cancer of the cervix (pictured)

The NHS offers free cervical screening tests to all women aged 25 to 64 every three to five years. The test detects early abnormalities which, if left untreated, can develop into cancer of the cervix (pictured)

The lower age of 25 was raised from 20 after the Advisory Committee on Cervical Cancer Screening (ACCS) advised the NHS in 2003 that cervical screening in younger women did more harm than good.

The committee advised that cell abnormalities in younger women normally went away of their own accord, and said that sending young women for further tests and treatment increased the likelihood of the woman having pre-term delivery if she went on to have children, and could cause significant anxiety.

Many other countries offer cervical screening from the age of 25, including Italy, France, Belgium and Ireland.

In Scotland, women are invited to be checked from the age of 20, though it is due to go up to 25 next year.

In Australia women are invited from 18, Greece from 20, and in the US two years after women become sexually active.

Meanwhile, other countries start cervical screening later. Both the Netherlands and Finland offer screening to women only once they are 30, and these two countries boast some of the lowest mortality rates for cervical cancer in Europe, and in Bulgaria it is for women over 31.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2926776/Chef-29-ignored-smear-tests-EIGHT-YEARS-left-infertile-cervical-cancer-treatment.html#ixzz3PxnsB3R2

Medicines related to valproate: risk of abnormal pregnancy outcomes

The below text is a press release from MHRA (Medicines Healthcare Regulatory Agency) with regards to Epilim……. INFACTS figures are somewhat different to theirs

Children exposed in utero to valproate are at a high risk of serious developmental disorders (in up to 30-40% of cases) and/or congenital malformations (in approximately 10% of cases).

  1. Risk of abnormal pregnancy outcomes
  2. Treatment during pregnancy
  3. Further information
  4. Usage during pregnancy in the UK
  5. Future action
  6. Call for reporting
  7. Further materials

This is to inform you of important new information and strengthened warnings related to safety of medicines related to valproate (sodium valproate, valproic acid [brand leader: Epilim] and valproate semisodium [brand leader: Depakote]), following completion of a Europe-wide review:

  • children exposed in utero to valproate are at a high risk of serious developmental disorders (in up to 30-40% of cases) and/or congenital malformations (in approximately 10% of cases)
  • valproate should not be prescribed to female children, female adolescents, women of childbearing potential or pregnant women unless other treatments are ineffective or not tolerated
  • valproate treatment must be started and supervised by a doctor experienced in managing epilepsy or bipolar disorder
  • carefully balance the benefits of valproate treatment against the risks when prescribing valproate for the first time, at routine treatment reviews, when a female child reaches puberty and when a woman plans a pregnancy or becomes pregnant
  • you must ensure that all female patients are informed of and understand:
    • risks associated with valproate during pregnancy
    • need to use effective contraception
    • need for regular review of treatment
    • the need to rapidly consult if she is planning a pregnancy or becomes pregnant

Please refer to the General Medical Council’s consent andprescribing guidance.

Risk of abnormal pregnancy outcomes

Valproate is associated with a dose-dependent risk of abnormal pregnancy outcomes, whether taken alone or in combination with other medicines. Data suggest that when valproate is taken for epilepsy with other medicines, the risk of abnormal pregnancy outcomes is greater than when valproate is taken alone.

The risk of congenital malformations is approximately 10 % while studies in preschool children exposed in utero to valproate show that up to 30-40% experience delays in their early development such as talking, and/or walking, have low intellectual abilities, poor language skills and memory problems.12345

Intelligence quotient (IQ) measured in a study of 6 years old children with a history of valproate exposure in utero was on average 7-10 points lower than those children exposed to other antiepileptics.6

Available data show that children exposed to valproate in utero are at increased risk of autistic spectrum disorder (approximately three-fold) and childhood autism (approximately five-fold) compared with the general study population Limited data suggests that children exposed to valproate in utero may be more likely to develop symptoms of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).789

Given these risks, valproate for the treatment of epilepsy or bipolar disorder should not be used during pregnancy and in women of child-bearing potential unless clearly necessary ie in situations where other treatments are ineffective or not tolerated.

Carefully balance the benefits of valproate treatment against the risks when prescribing valproate for the first time, at routine treatment reviews, when a female child reaches puberty and when a woman plans a pregnancy or becomes pregnant.

If you decide to prescribe valproate to a woman of child-bearing potential, she must use effective contraception during treatment and be fully informed of the risks for the unborn child if she becomes pregnant during treatment with valproate.

Treatment during pregnancy

If a woman with epilepsy or bipolar disorder who is treated with valproate plans a pregnancy or becomes pregnant, consideration should be given to alternative treatments.

If valproate treatment is continued during the pregnancy:

  • the lowest effective dose should be used and the daily dose should be divided into several small doses to be taken throughout the day – the use of a prolonged release formulation may be preferable to other treatment forms
  • initiate specialised prenatal monitoring in order to monitor the development of the unborn, including the possible occurrence of neural tube defects and other malformations
  • folate supplementation before the pregnancy may decrease the risk of neural tube defects common to all pregnancies; however the available evidence does not suggest it prevents the birth defects or malformations due to valproate exposure

Further information

The Cochrane review10 published in November 2014 assessed 22 prospective cohort studies and 6 registry studies. The review supported findings from the European review that children exposed to valproate in utero were at an increased risk of poorer neurodevelopmental scores compared to the general study population both in infancy and when school aged.

A dose-related risk of developmental disorders was reported for valproate in 6 of the 28 studies included in the Cochrane review. However, based on the available data, it is not possible to establish a threshold dose below which no risk of developmental disorders exists.

Usage during pregnancy in the UK

Data from the Clinical Practice Research Datalink suggest that approximately 35,000 women aged 14 to 45 per year had a prescription for sodium valproate between 2010 and 2012, the majority for epilepsy. Of these, at least 375 per year had a prescription for sodium valproate while pregnant.

Future action

Pharmaceutical companies holding licences for valproate containing medicines must monitor the usage of these medicines to assess the effectiveness of these new measures on reducing the number of pregnant women taking valproate. We will continue to monitor valproate usage using the Clinical Practice Research Datalink. We will also work with stakeholders such as clinical guideline bodies to develop tools to aid decision-making for healthcare professionals and patients. We have already developed information booklets for healthcare professionals and patients (see further information below).

The product information will now be updated to reflect our current understanding of the available evidence and to make information as clear as possible.

Educational materials are available to healthcare professionals and patients in order to inform about the risks associated with valproate in female children, female adolescents, women of childbearing potential and pregnant women (see further materials below).

Call for reporting

Valproate is now a black triangle medicine and is subject to additional monitoring. Therefore please report any suspected side effects to valproate via the Yellow Card scheme www.gov.uk/yellowcard.

Further materials

Guide for healthcare professionals Jan 2015

Valproate booklet for patients Jan 2015

Summaries of product characteristics and patient information leaflets

Letter sent to healthcare professionals 21 Jan 2015

Information from the European Medicines Agency Nov 2014

Article citation: Drug Safety Update volume 8 issue 6 January 2015: 1

  1. Meador K, Reynolds MW, Crean S et al. Pregnancy outcomes in women with epilepsy: a systematic review and meta-analysis of published pregnancy registries and cohorts. Epilepsy Res. 2008;81(1):1-13.
  2. Meador KJ, Penovich P, Baker GA, Pennell PB, Bromfield E, Pack A, Liporace JD, Sam M, Kalayjian LA, Thurman DJ, Moore E, Loring DW; NEAD Study Group. Antiepileptic drug use in women of childbearing age. Epilepsy Behav. 2009;15(3):339-43.
  3. Bromley RL, Mawer G, Clayton-Smith J, Baker GA; Liverpool and Manchester Neurodevelopment Group. Autism spectrum disorders following in utero exposure to antiepileptic drugs. Neurology. 2008;71(23):1923-4.
  4. Thomas SV, Sukumaran S, Lukose N, George A, Sarma PS. Intellectual and language functions in children of mothers with epilepsy. Epilepsia. 2007 Dec;48(12):2234-40.
  5. Cummings C, Stewart M, Stevenson M, Morrow J, Nelson J. Neurodevelopment of children exposed in utero to lamotrigine, sodium valproate and carbamazepine. Arch Dis Child 2011 July;96(7):643-7.
  6. Meador KJ, Baker GA, Browning N, Cohen MJ, Bromley RL, Clayton-Smith J, Kalayjian LA, Kanner A, Liporace JD, Pennell PB, Privitera M, Loring DW; NEAD Study Group. Fetal antiepileptic drug exposure and cognitive outcomes at age 6 years (NEAD study): a prospective observational study. Lancet Neurol. 2013;12(3):244-52.
  7. Christensen J, Grønborg TK, Sørensen MJ et al. Prenatal valproate exposure and risk of autism spectrum disorders and childhood autism. JAMA. 2013; 309(16):1696-703.
  8. Cohen MJ, Meador KJ, Browning N, May R, Baker GA, Clayton-Smith J, Kalayjian LA, Kanner A, Liporace JD, Pennell PB, Privitera M, Loring DW; NEAD study group. Fetal antiepileptic drug exposure: Adaptive and emotional/behavioral functioning at age 6years. Epilepsy Behav. 2013;29(2):308-15.
  9. Cohen M.J et al. Fetal Antiepileptic Drug Exposure: Motor, Adaptive and Emotional/Behavioural Functioning at age 3 years. Epilepsy Behav. 2011; 22(2):240-246
  10. Bromley R, Weston J, Adab N et al. Treatment for epilepsy in pregnancy: neurodevelopmental outcomes in the child. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2014, Issue 10

Calpol can be dangerous – so why make it taste like strawberry sweets? Doctors urge manufacturers to make medicine less appealing to children

  • Doctors urge Calpol to make change taste and appearance of the medicine
  • Strawberry taste and pink colouring make it ‘almost irresistible’ to children
  • Overdose on paracetamol in Calpol can cause liver damage and even death
  • Five children admitted to hospital after overdosing on over-the-counter painkillers every day
Doctors have urged medicine manufacturers to make sweet-tasting Calpol less appealing to children

Doctors have urged medicine manufacturers to make sweet-tasting Calpol less appealing to children

With 12 million bottles sold each year, Calpol is a medicine cabinet staple in most homes, soothing childhood aches and pains thanks to its main ingredient – paracetamol.

But now a leading doctor has warned that children could be at risk of accidental overdose from Calpol and other brightly coloured drugs that ‘look more like milkshake than medicines’.

Doctors say that Calpol’s syrup-sweet strawberry taste and pink colouring also makes it ‘almost irresistible’ to some youngsters.

‘Some children go to alarming lengths to get their hands on it while their parents’ backs are turned,’ said one.

Health professionals have now urged Calpol’s manufacturers to make the medicine less appealing to youngsters to prevent accidental overdose of paracetamol, which can cause serious liver damage and, in rare cases, prove fatal.

The plea comes as figures obtained by The Mail on Sunday reveal nearly five children a day were admitted to hospital with accidental overdoses of over-the-counter painkillers in one year alone.

Concerns have previously been raised that children are given too much paracetamol by GPs and parents who do not realise there are doses in other branded products, such as Lemsip.

The Health and Social Care Information Centre statistics show that a staggering 1,691 children aged one to four were admitted to hospital in 2012-13 because of ‘accidental poisoning’ by medicines including non-prescription painkillers ibuprofen, paracetamol and aspirin.

Although perfectly safe within the recommended doses, paracetamol is one of the easiest drugs on which to overdose. Unlike with other drugs, patients do not need much more than the advised amount before it starts to cause problems.

A 2007 study found 84 per cent of babies are given Calpol in their first six months. The brand’s Infant Suspension Formula, suitable for babies aged two months and over, is pink and strawberry-flavoured, while the Six Plus formula is orange-flavoured and coloured.

Doctors say that Calpol’s syrup-sweet strawberry taste and pink colouring also makes it ‘almost irresistible’ to some children, but it can be dangerous

Doctors say that Calpol’s syrup-sweet strawberry taste and pink colouring also makes it ‘almost irresistible’ to some children, but it can be dangerous

Doctor and author Dr Max Pemberton warns that children could be getting ‘mixed messages’ on the potential dangers that lurk inside the bottles.

‘The introduction of child-proof tops and blister packs for pills mean it is harder for children to get hold of medicines these days, but these figures revealing the number of children admitted to hospital show that, sadly, some still do,’ he says.

‘With a medicine like Calpol, the bright packaging and appealing taste means a young child could mistake it for sweets. The purple packaging for the Infant Suspension reminds you of Cadbury’s chocolate, and the medicine itself looks more like milkshake.

‘How can we expect a child to understand that something that looks and tastes so nice actually has the potential to do harm if they have too much?’

Calpol is used to treat common childhood conditions including fever, earache and teething trouble.

Official guidelines state that babies aged between three and 12 months should be given no more than 240mg of paracetamol a day. That’s the equivalent of just two 5ml teaspoons of Calpol Infant Suspension formula. Children aged ten to 12 are allowed 2,000mg – four 10ml spoons of the Six Plus formula.

Dr Pemberton has urged Johnson and Johnson, Calpol’s manufacturers, to rethink the formula – and its packaging.

Nearly five children a day are admitted to hospital with accidental overdoses of over-the-counter painkillers, such as paracetamol

Nearly five children a day are admitted to hospital with accidental overdoses of over-the-counter painkillers, such as paracetamol

‘Paracetamol is an everyday painkiller but it has potential to cause serious harm, particularly to a child as their organs are less developed and more fragile,’ he says.

Dr Sally Gibbs, an A&E consultant at Sheffield Children’s Hospital, says worried parents with children who have drunk over-the-counter medicines are a familiar sight in emergency departments.

She adds: ‘Sometimes the child has climbed up to get it from the medicine cabinet, or the parents may not have put it properly out of reach or failed to make sure the top is on securely. Older siblings may give it to their little brother or sister.

‘Children may reach for Calpol as they recall having it before, and that it tastes nice.’

Online parenting forum Mumsnet contains posts from concerned parents whose children have obtained the medicine. One wrote: ‘I’ve just found a bottle of Calpol Six Plus open. They [the children] climbed up into the cupboard and managed to open the so-called child-proof lid. Half a bottle has gone.’

Public health nutritionist Dr Helen Crawley says she cannot understand why sweeteners such as sucrose are used to make Calpol more palatable when a spoonful of milk would help the medicine go down just as well.

‘The bright pink colour of Calpol could be related to overdose in children who are picking it up and think it’s something like Ribena,’ she warns. ‘Colourless medicine would be fine, and would reduce this risk. There is no rationale for using colours or artificial sweeteners.’

A Johnson and Johnson spokesman said: ‘We are committed to patient safety and have numerous safeguards in place to prevent any accidental childhood poisoning.

‘The caps on bottles of Calpol are thoroughly tested to resist a child’s attempts to access the product.

‘The pink colour in Calpol Infant Suspension is long-standing and helps compliance for children by making the medicine they need more acceptable for them. A colour-free variant is also available simply to give parents greater choice, and is not related to any safety concerns.’

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2924545/Calpol-dangerous-make-taste-like-strawberry-sweets-Doctors-urge-manufacturers-make-medicine-appealing-children.html#ixzz3Ppk6Svtw

Disabled man, 40, with the mental age of seven is barred from his regular visits to Legoland over child protection fears

  • Disabled Simon Thomason barred from regular visits to Legoland
  • 40-year-old has cerebral palsy, autism and a metal age of seven
  • Attraction also barred Anthony Lewis, 20, who has Williams Syndrome  
  • Legoland Discovery Centre refuses entry to adults without children
  • Policy branded ‘unfair’ and ‘ridiculous’ by families of disabled men
  • Say the policy at the centre in Manchester is ‘reasonable and appropriate’
  • Offer evenings for adults but say if it is difficult could arrange for manager to take men round  

A disabled man with the mental age of seven has been barred from his regular visits to Legoland with his carer because of ‘child protection’ fears.

Simon Thomason, 40, who has cerebral palsy, autism and a mental age of seven, has been told his annual pass to the Manchester-based attraction will not be renewed.

Legoland Discovery Centre say they have a policy of refusing entry to adults without children and have defended their decision to turn away Mr Thomason, who was accompanied by an adult carer.

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Simon Thomason, 40, who has the mental age of seven, has been barred from Legoland Discovery Centre, Manchester

Simon Thomason, 40, who has the mental age of seven, has been barred from Legoland Discovery Centre, Manchester

But families and disability campaigners have slammed the policy as ‘discrimination’ and say it effectively bans their childless relatives from the attraction.

Mr Thomason’s sister, Paula, 41, from Irlam, in Greater Manchester, bought the £60 annual pass for her brother last year after explaining his condition to staff.

But after seven months of weekly visits to the attraction in the Trafford Centre Mr Thomason was told he was no longer welcome due to ‘child protection’.

He was instead offered a pass for alternative venues run by parent group Merlin Attractions elsewhere in the UK.

When Miss Thomason argued this was unfair, management said they would honour the last five months on the pass but it would not be renewed.

The family also now have to email in advance before he can visit.

And in another case, a 20-year-old man with learning disabilities and his carer were also refused entry.

The Legoland Discovery Centre, pictured, has a policy of not allowing adults to visit if not accompanied by a child

Elaine Lewis’s son Anthony, 20, who has Williams Syndrome and the mental age of six, was also turned away when he tried to visit this week.

Mr Lewis’s carer was also told adults without children were not allowed entry.

The mother, from Gatley, Stockport, said: ‘The ridiculous thing is Simon would be allowed in if he went with a child – but neither would be able to look after each other.

‘He just wants to go and play with the Lego and look at the models.’

Clare Lucas, activism lead at charity Mencap, also slammed the decision.

She said: ‘It is unfortunate Legoland Discovery’s policy has had a negative effect on someone with a learning disability who wanted to go out and access leisure activities many people take for granted.

Simon Thomas, pictured with his sister Paula, 41,  had been visiting the attraction on a weekly basis for seven monthswhen he was told he was no longer welcome

Simon Thomas, pictured with his sister Paula, 41,  had been visiting the attraction on a weekly basis for seven monthswhen he was told he was no longer welcome

Anthony’s mother Elaine calls Legoland rules ‘a little crazy’

The attraction, aimed at three to 10 year olds, features 4D cinema, laser ride, driving school, and offers workshops with master builders.

It states on the Discovery Centre website that adults must be accompanied by children to visit.

But a spokesman for Legoland Discovery Centre said: ‘Our policy not to permit entry to groups of adults, adult couples, or lone adults, regardless of circumstances, who are not accompanied by a child or children under the age of 16 is we believe therefore appropriate and the best way to constantly maintain a welcoming environment for our young visitors.

Anthony Lewis, 20, who has Williams Syndrome and the mental age of six, was also refused entry to the attraction

Anthony Lewis, 20, who has Williams Syndrome and the mental age of six, was also refused entry to the attraction

‘We make no apologies for this policy and believe it to be reasonable and appropriate, and one on which we make no exceptions.

‘That said, we also very much appreciate the continuing appeal that LEGO has for all ages, and it has never been our intention to deny access to our adult fans, or cause distress to anyone.

‘That is why we regularly host evening events specifically for adults in order to showcase specific attractions within the centre and these are very well attended.

Anothony's mother Elaine Lewis said her son,  'just wants to go and play with the Lego and look at the models'

Anothony’s mother Elaine Lewis said her son,  ‘just wants to go and play with the Lego and look at the models’

‘We hope very much that all adult guests will join us at one of these sessions and we are sure that he would very much enjoy it.

‘However if an evening event is difficult for him to attend then if his family make contact we would be happy to agree a time when one of our managers is available to show him around.’

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2924553/Disabled-man-40-mental-age-seven-barred-regular-visits-Legoland-child-protection-fears.html#ixzz3PmDn5raR