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Love drugs, GP in Ed Balls scandal shame and the dying embers of the bonfire of the quangos



By Lilian Anekwe

Our roundup of health news headlines on Thursday 14 October.

Alright now, come close, dim the lights, turn the music down to a soft, dulcet seduction and wilt under the lure of my come-to-bed eyes.

That’s how getting it on should be done, they tell me. But scientists, admittedly not renowned for their sex appeal, have taken all the passion and romance out of affairs of the heart by studying it in minute detail and reasoned, in a logical and unemotional manner, that lurve is a drug. Specifically, an opioid analgesic.

The Independent says a study in lovestruck American students found the euphoria that comes with the flush of love can take the pain out of physical injury such as touching something hot. And concentrating on the thought of a loved one reduced the feeling of pain in lovers who were subjected to ‘mildly painful shocks’. Like being stabbed in the hand, but not like being dumped.

The bonfire of the quangos looks set to be scaled back, as The Independent understands that less than 100 of the sraggering 742 quangos that currently exist will be abolished outright. I ‘understand’ that sucks, as I had grown accustomed to a Wicker Man-inspired pagan ritual of non-governmental staff. Oh well.

The Daily Telegraph understands that as many as 200 quangos might go. It also cheerfully reports that British scientists have developed a landmark urine test to detect prostate cancer risk that costs only £5.50 – five and a half copies of that newspaper.

Walking nine miles a week could save you from dementia, The Guardian says, while the Daily Mail reports that staying in work when you are older can help stave off memory loss – good news as we are all threatened with a raised retirement age and smaller pensions.

Thousands of breast cancer patients may be entitled to a new treatment after NICE said it will consider the use of lapatinib, the Daily Telegraph says.

And lastly, the paper that can truly never resist at dig at GPs – you know the one – gleefully reports that a GP has been jailed for ‘concocting a tangled web of lies’ to save his practice from financial ruin, and – for shame! – even dragged local MP and new shadow home secretary Ed Balls into his sordid scheme.

Spotted a story we’ve missed? Let us know, and we’ll update the digest throughout the day…

Daily Digest