Hillcroft LRC

Posts Tagged ‘medicine

MRI scannerHelium is an ultra-light gas (think of balloons) discovered in 1868 by a French scientist, Pierre Janssen. It is the second most abundant gas in the universe but supplies on Earth have been running low and hard to find. Why is this cause for concern? Helium has many uses – in medicine, in space and science generally.

The most common use in medicine is nuclear Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). This is often used to diagnose soft tissue conditions like stroke, ligament injuries and tumours.

Liquid helium is used to keep the superconducting magnets cool in an MRI machine. In the last 5 years, doctors and radiological staff have become increasingly concerned that helium stocks were running low and what that would mean for MRI as a diagnostic health investigation.

It has been reported this week in New Scientist that fortunately, vast helium reserves have been located in The Great Rift Valley in Tanzania, in the east of the African continent. This means the many uses for helium have a slight reprieve but geologists will have to keep looking to stop the world from running out.

 

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Infographic on transplanation

Just after Easter, there was an interesting infographic in the Independent-i (Thursday 7 April page 2). It provided readers with transplant activity for the year 2014-15 e.g. 180 heart transplants; the numbers around transplantation like the 22 million people on the transplant register and a history of the key transplant developments worldwide starting with the first corneal transplant in 1905.

Want more information about transplantation? Explore the following LRC and web items:

Oxford Concise Medical Dictionary 9th edn (2015) by Marvin

DK Science: the definitive visual guide 2nd edn (2011) by Hart-Davis

NHS Blood & Transplant clinical website

Keen on infographic materials generally? Take a look at:

Visual aid (2008) by Draught Associates

The State of the World Atlas 9th edn (2013) by Smith

ebook: available too.


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