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Print your own pelvis, STI 'crisis' among gay men and why cycling could save the NHS millions

A round-up of the health news headlines on Monday 10 January.

Sexually transmitted infections amongst British gay men are reaching ‘crisis’ levels as health chiefs from across the UK meet this week to set a course for tackling soaring rates of disease, according to The Independent.

Official statistics show new HIV infections have reached record highs alongside soaring rates of gonorrhoea, chlamydia and syphilis, thought to be driven by unprotected sex and club-related ‘high-risk’ drug-taking. David Stuart, substance use lead at the 56 Dean Street sexual health clinic, told the Independent: ‘There’s been a flood of new drugs onto the market. That has mixed with a lot of confusion about the changing HIV healthcare situation.’

A 3D printed pelvis has allowed a man in his 60s to walk again after surgeons tailored the prosthetic to replace bone which had to be removed in order to arrest the spread of bone cancer.

According to The Telegraph, the surgeons used scans to identify how much bone would be removed then printed the new one with a technique that lays down layers of titanium powder and fuses them with a laser. A mineral coating allows it to fuse with the new bone. Craig Gerrand, a consultant orthopaedic surgeon at Newcastle Upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Trust said: ‘Since this cancer does not respond to drugs or radiotherapy, the only option was to remove half of the pelvis.’

And finally, The Guardian reports that promoting cycling could save the NHS as much as £250 million pounds a year if one in ten journeys was made by bike, rather than the current 2% of trips.

The study, conducted by University of Cambridge researchers, is part of a British Cycling campaign hoping to boost the number of bums on bikes which would save money by cutting ‘inactivity-related diseases’ like heart disease, strokes and diabetes. British Cycling policy advisor and Olympic Champion, Chris Boardman, told the Guardian that the Netherlands opted for a cycle and walk-first policy: ‘It is no coincidence that they are also one of the healthiest and happiest nations in the world.’

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