Dr Rajiv Desai

An Educational Blog


ZIKA: ______ _____ Prologue: On 18 April 1947, a rhesus monkey that researchers identified as 766 ran a fever of 39.7°C, about 2°C higher than normal. The monkey was part of a study hunting for yellow fever virus and was living in a cage on a platform built into the tree canopy in the 1.5-kilometer-long Zika Forest, which runs adjacent to an arm of Lake Victoria in Uganda. Three days later, the investigators took a blood sample from Rhesus 766 and injected it into the brains of Swiss albino mice. The mice “showed signs of sickness” after 10 days, and the researchers harvested their brains, from which they isolated a “new filterable transmissible agent.” Come January of the following year, the same researchers trapped mosquitoes from these canopy platforms and took them to the lab, hoping to isolate yellow fever virus. Others had shown that one of these species they […]



SWEATING: _____ _____ Prologue: Sweating is an essential and natural biological process that starts soon after we are born. Sweat is a weak salt solution produced by the sweat glands of skin. These are distributed over the entire body but are most numerous on the palms and soles.  Since the time of the ancient Greeks, the significance of sweating has been recognized, whereas our understanding of the mechanisms and controllers of sweating has largely developed during the past century. Heat dissipation is vital for our survival during exercise and heat stress.  In humans, the primary mechanism of heat dissipation, particularly when ambient temperature is higher than skin temperature, is evaporative heat loss secondary to sweat secretion from sweat glands. Normally humans produce as much as one liter of sweat per day; however most of this evaporates as soon as it is produced so we don’t notice it. The body produces […]


Novel Approach to Diabetes Mellitus

Novel Approach to Diabetes Mellitus: ________ The figure below shows diabetic patient self-administering insulin injection:   ________ My novel hypothesis on diabetes mellitus (DM): _ Everybody knows that insulin is the only treatment of type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM). However in type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) diet, exercise, oral hypoglycemic agents (OHA) precede insulin therapy and only when OHA fails or severe diabetes at onset warrant insulin therapy. There are reports of short term early insulin therapy in all T2DM to protect b-cells of pancreas. I propose a hypothesis that every T2DM patient needs insulin treatment from day one of diagnosis and it ought to be continued indefinitely. By the time diagnosis of diabetes is made, 50 to 80 % of b-cells of pancreas are dead (dysfunctional). The logic is that exogenous insulin will reduce load on surviving b-cells of pancreas, protect surviving b-cells and achieve better glycemic control and […]



YOGA: _ Marilyn Monroe performs dhanurasana (bow pose) in 1948: Indra Devi opened yoga studio in Hollywood in 1948 and discovered ready students among movie stars, who found yoga’s breathing and relaxation techniques useful to their work. Her students included Greta Garbo, Gloria Swanson and Marilyn Monroe. ______ Prologue: A considerable number of studies have identified prayer as a frequent and favoured coping method among patients providing each patient with comfort and strength. A variety of studies have attempted to test the efficacy of prayer and found no medical benefit. Prayers offered by strangers had no effect on the recovery of people who were undergoing heart surgery, a large and well-constructed study proved in 2006. The Cochrane Collaboration published a thorough review reaching the same conclusion in 2011 and counselled, “We are not convinced that further trials of this intervention should be undertaken and would prefer to see any resources […]



EBOLA:  ________ _______ Prologue:   The most dangerous outbreak of an emerging infectious disease since the appearance of HIV seems to have begun on December 6, 2013, in the village of Meliandou, in Guinea, in West Africa, with the death of a two-year-old boy who was suffering from diarrhea and a fever. We now know that he was infected with Ebola virus. After Ebola infected the boy, it went from him to his mother, who died, to his three-year-old sister, who died, and to their grandmother, who died, and then it left the village and began moving through the human population of Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone. Ebola virus is one of a group of zoonotic viruses that can cause severe disease in humans. The virus is known as a “zoonotic” virus because it’s transmitted to humans from animals. With pressures from a growing global population, climate change, deforestation, urbanization […]


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