This site is intended for health professionals only

Stroke risk from over working, munching on the move increases over-eating and brain-boosting drugs need debate

Doctors putting in extra hours to keep on top of paperwork or catch up on appointments could be putting themselves at risk of stroke, according to a major study published in the Lancet.

The Guardian reports that working more than a 55 hour week increases stroke risk by 33% relative to people working a 35 to 40 hour week, they also increase their risk of coronary heart disease by 13%

The study states: ‘Sudden death from overwork is often caused by stroke and is believed to result from a repetitive triggering of the stress response.’ It adds that physical inactivity could also be a factor.

And don’t think you can sneak in extra hours at the surgery by grabbing breakfast on the go as the Telegraph reports eating while walking around could lead to obesity by making you more likely to over eat later in the day.

The study by the University of Surrey found participants overate more when walking than during other forms of distraction, such as watching TV or having a conversation.

‘Eating on the go may make dieters overeat later on in the day,’ said lead author Professor Jane Ogden.

So working longer is out the window, so why not get on board with the latest big trend on campus: using prescription drugs to chemically enhance your concentration and productivity?

Also in the Telegraph, a research team from the universities of Oxford and Harvard has found that narcolepsy drug Modafinil – apparently taken by as many as one in four students at Oxford – really does boost decision making, learning and memory.

Researchers say we must have a ‘societal debate’ on the ethics of using the drug in this manner and how they should be ‘classified, condoned or condemned.’

This means that it is time for a wider societal debate on how to integrate and regulate cognitive enhancement . The ethical exploration is a huge and important goal for the near future: one that both scientists, politicians, and the public need to be involved in.’


Visit Pulse Reference for details on 140 symptoms, including easily searchable symptoms and categories, offering you a free platform to check symptoms and receive potential diagnoses during consultations.