Button batteries pose 'deadly' risk to toddlers

  • 22 September 2016
  • From the section Health
Media captionSee what a battery can do to a child's throat

Surgeons are warning of the potentially deadly risk posed to young children by button batteries.

If accidentally swallowed, the small, round batteries can get lodged in the oesophagus and burn a hole through its lining.

London's Great Ormond Street Hospital has seen a big increase in cases in the past year.

Surgeon Kate Cross said: "Button batteries should be treated like poison and kept out of reach of children."

Three-year-old Valeria, from Northern Ireland, has been left with permanent damage to her throat after she swallowed a watch battery in April 2015.

Image caption Valeria with her mum Jelena at Great Ormond Street Hospital

Read full article Button batteries pose 'deadly' risk to toddlers

Robot operates inside eye in world first

  • 9 September 2016
  • From the section Health
eye surgery
Image caption The Preceyes robot has a thin needle which enters the eye and is moved using the motorised joystick on left of frame

Surgeons have used a robot to operate inside the eye and restore sight - in a world first.

A team at Oxford's John Radcliffe Hospital used the device, controlled via a joystick, to remove a membrane one hundredth of a millimetre thick.

Read full article Robot operates inside eye in world first

The Crick: Europe's biggest biomedical lab opens

  • 1 September 2016
  • From the section Health
Media captionMedical Correspondent Fergus Walsh explores the new Francis Crick Institute

Europe's biggest biomedical laboratory, the Francis Crick Institute, has opened in London.

The £650m building, behind St Pancras station and the British Library, will be home to 1,250 scientists.

Read full article The Crick: Europe's biggest biomedical lab opens

Widow's court battle over frozen embryos

  • 20 June 2016
  • From the section Health
Samantha Jefferies
Image caption Samantha Jefferies on the beach where she used to walk with her husband Clive

The widow of a Falklands war veteran is going to the High Court in a bid to prevent frozen embryos they created from being destroyed.

Samantha Jefferies, aged 42, from East Sussex, says the embryos represent her "last chance" of having her dead husband's child.

Read full article Widow's court battle over frozen embryos

Three-person babies IVF technique ‘safe’

  • 8 June 2016
  • From the section Health
embryo Image copyright WTCMR Newcastle
Image caption Early pronuclear transfer: The nuclei from a recently created embryo - from the egg and sperm - being injected into a donor embryo which has had its nucleus removed

The use of an IVF technique involving DNA from three people to create a baby has moved a step closer with a study that shows it is safe.

Scientists at Newcastle University are trying to help women who are at risk of passing on serious genetic disorders to have a healthy child.

Read full article Three-person babies IVF technique ‘safe’

Gene editing technique could transform future

  • 6 June 2016
  • From the section Health
Media captionFergus Walsh: "CRISPR gene editing .... uses molecular scissors to cut both strands of DNA"

CRISPR - get to know this acronym. It's good to know the name of something that could change your future.

Pronounced "crisper", it is a biological system for altering DNA. Known as gene editing, this technology has the potential to change the lives of everyone and everything on the planet.

Read full article Gene editing technique could transform future

Paranoia 'reduced with virtual reality'

  • 5 May 2016
  • From the section Health
Media captionParanoia treated by using virtual reality video

Virtual reality has been used to help treat severe paranoia.

Patients who suffered persecutory delusions were encouraged to step into a computer-generated Underground train carriage and a lift.

Read full article Paranoia 'reduced with virtual reality'

Trial aims to 'stall' type 1 diabetes

  • 24 March 2016
  • From the section Health
Media captionType 1 diabetes trials give hope for "a more normal life", as Fergus Walsh reports

A trial has begun in London of an immunotherapy treatment aimed at halting the progression of type 1 diabetes.

Twenty-four volunteers are being recruited for the study in the Biomedical Research Centre at Guy's hospital.

Read full article Trial aims to 'stall' type 1 diabetes

The paralysed man who can ride a bike

  • 4 March 2016
  • From the section Health
Media captionDarek learns to cycle again

A man who was paralysed from the chest down after a knife attack in 2010 can now ride an adapted tricycle.

In 2014, surgeons in Poland announced they had reversed Darek Fidyka's paralysis using cells taken from his nose to repair his spinal cord.

Read full article The paralysed man who can ride a bike

Why brains are beautiful

  • 16 February 2016
  • From the section Health
Media captionFergus Walsh discovers why the brain is a marvel of evolution

When I picked up the human brain in my hands, several things ran through my mind. My immediate concern was I might drop it or that it would fall apart in my hands - fortunately neither happened.

Second, I was struck by how light the human brain is. I should say this was half a brain - the right hemisphere - the left had already been sent for dissection. The intact human brain weighs only around 3lbs (1.5kg) - just 2% of body-weight, and yet it consumes 20% of its energy.

Read full article Why brains are beautiful