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Statins for MS held up by 'red tape', shorter men have higher dementia risk and how shift work messes with minds

A round-up of the morning’s health news headlines

Charities and neurology experts have called for the removal of ‘red tape’ that means people with multiple sclerosis can’t access statins on the NHS to help slow the progression of their disease, reports The Telegraph.

In a letter to the paper, they argue it should be made easier for drugs to be ‘repurposed’ to be used in conditions other than those they were originally licensed for.

The Daily Mail reports that being vertically challenged may put you at greater risk of developing dementia.

Researchers at Edinburgh University have found that men are particularly affected - men shorter than 5’6” are 50% more likely to get dementia than those over 5’10”.

Finally - more bad news healthwise for shift workers, according to the BBC.

Researchers found that a decade of doing shifts ‘aged the brain by more than six years’, as determined by performance on cognitive function tests.

Fortunately the study also showed people’s brain function recovered once they gave up the shift work, however - even if it took five years.

Dr Michael Hastings, from the UK Medical Research Council’s Laboratory of Molecular Biology, told the BBC: ‘The reversibility is a really exciting finding because no-one else has shown it and no matter how compromised a person may be there’s always hope of recovery.’

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