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Police: British Prime Minister Edward Heath Was A Pedophile

HeatStreet

British police have said they believe they have evidence linking Britain’s last unmarried prime minister to alleged victims of pedophilia.

Sir Edward Heath, a Conservative, led the UK between 1970 and 1974. He died aged 89 in 2005.

Since 2015 Wiltshire Police has been investigating claims linking him to sexual abuse. This weekend in an interview with the Mail on Sunday, Wiltshire’s chief constable, Mike Veale, said he believed the allegations against Heath (pictured with Richard Nixon) were “120 per cent genuine”.

A report by Wiltshire Police, scheduled for publication later this year, will apparently highlight photographs of Heath driving a car as key evidence against him. The photograph conflicts with Heath’s supporters’ claims that Heath was driven everywhere by police protection officers and never took the wheel himself.

More than 30 alleged victims have apparently contacted Wiltshire Police with claims of abuse involving Heath said to have been carried out between the 1960s and 1990s. A source close to the investigation said that “strikingly similar” allegations made against Heath include the names used for the former politician, the type of abuse and the locations.

Officers have obtained copies of photographs showing Heath behind the wheel of a Rover 2000 car which he bought in the mid-1970s after leaving office. They were reported to have been doubtful about the allegations at first but apparently “now believe them”.

One alleged victim claims he was abused by Heath after being picked up while hitch-hiking.

The investigation into Heath involves a team of seven officers and eleven police staff. It has so far cost £700,000 ($875,000).

In a statement released last night Chief Constable Mike Veale said: “It is not the role of the police to judge the guilt or innocence of people in our criminal justice system. Our role is to objectively and proportionately go where the evidence takes us.”

The investigation is also considering claims that the abuse allegations against Heath were reported to the police years ago but covered up by the British Establishment.

The allegations against Heath have been dismissed by a former aide to another ex-prime minister, Harold Wilson, who urged the police to end their “witch-hunt”. Joe Haines, who was press secretary to Wilson from 1969 to 1976, said he was better placed than most to know if Heath was a “sexual deviant”.

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If you are still invested in the real estate of European cities, get out! A terrorist attack with chemical weapons will happen. There will be hoards of people who won't want to live in urban centers.

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Teen auctions off her virginity to pay for college and a car

An 18-year-old is chasing her “dream” of auctioning off her virginity to the highest bidder — so she can pay for college and buy a car.

The half-Austrian, half-German, brunette — known only as “Kim” — said she jumped at the chance after hearing about a Romanian model who collected close to $3 million dollars for her v-card, according to her listing on the infamous site Cinderella Escorts.

The “18 year old and [5’8”] tall, school student is a checked up virgin and her dream is to sell her virginity,” Kim’s profile on the site reads.

“After I read about other virgins who sold their virginity…I asked myself one question. Should I give my virginity to a man who later on maybe will break up with me or is it better to take a lot of money instead,” the profile reads.

The website says virginity is proven with a doctor’s note, and bidders are free to do their own tests to “inspect” the girl and make sure she’s not faking it, according to The Sun.

Kim wrote she wants to study in Germany or Vienna and aims to use the dough to buy an apartment, a car and pay for tuition with the money she receives.

Her minimum bid is about $112,000 and her profile boasts a love for fitness, Greek food and Dior perfume.

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95 percent of the victims of violence are men. Because women feel flattered when men fight each other and kill each other to prove that they are real men.

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What We Don’t Know about Sex in the Middle East

Zocalo Public Square

After ten years writing and traveling through the Middle East, John R. Bradley decided to tackle the subject that everyone talks about without saying much: sex. In Behind the Veil of Vice: The Business and Culture of Sex in the Middle East, Bradley reveals the many different ways countries across the region talk about and regulate sex. Below, he chats with Zócalo about legal prostitution in Tunisia, hour-long marriages in Saudi Arabia, and what West and East have in common when it comes to sex.

Q. What are some of the assumptions those in the West have about sex and the Middle East?

A. For me, what is most striking is that in the space of a century these assumptions – or what I would call misconceptions or fantasies – about the Middle East have changed so radically.

Until the early 20th century the Middle East, in the eyes of the West, was an exotic place of intriguing decadence, of secret harems and lecherous pederasts, a sensual region where Westerners could indulge in sexual behavior, or at least report on it, in perhaps the only way that was unlikely to cause consternation at home. Now the opposite idea prevails: the Middle East is sexually barren, horribly repressive, and anti-sex in a way that contrasts with the supposed licentious and libertarian West.

Both of these narratives, I think, tell us as much about the preoccupations of the West, and the West’s projection of its anxieties on other peoples and cultures, as the reality of how sexuality has played out in the Middle East historically or continues to do so in the present. But what most intrigues me, and is the main theme of Behind the Veil of Vice, is the remarkable resilience of competing cultural identities and attitudes toward sex in the countries I explore, which include Morocco, Tunisia, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Bahrain, Iran, and Yemen.

A vibrant underground continues to flourish in private, and sometimes even in the open, in the local, strongly rooted communities I have lived and worked in, despite the strange, faceless, sexless rules the minority fundamentalists want to put over public life. Essentially, we’re talking about the vast gulf that exists between private and public morality, which is normal in any culture during any period of time you care to mention.

Q. Can you discuss broadly the status of sex and sexuality in the Middle East, particularly through the status of institutions like prostitution and marriage?

A. I think it is defined pretty much in the same way that it is the West, by what I call in the book a kind of higher hypocrisy. However, it is very difficult to make broad generalizations about the whole region, and that is precisely what the book tries to show.

For example, in Tunisia prostitution is legal and regulated, and every main city has a red-light district. Because the staunchly secular Tunisian regime thankfully does not allow the radical Islamists any opportunity to participate in the political or social life of the country, and because Tunisia has a deeply entrenched feminist tradition, the issue of legalized prostitution is of little concern to the average Tunisian man or woman. At the same time, the Tunisian regime takes a very dim view of unregulated prostitution, and has introduced laws that have successfully helped to restrict its practice. In contrast, in Egypt prostitution is officially illegal, despite the fact that the country is still ruled by an essentially secular regime. However, prostitution is everywhere in Egypt, involving both male and female sex workers. This fact is often highlighted by the Islamists, who are afforded a role in Egyptian political and social life, as a sign that the country has lost its moral way.

Elsewhere, the status of prostitution in the Middle East varies greatly. In Syria, it is quietly tolerated. In Bahrain, there is a thriving sex industry catering mostly to Saudi sex tourists, and the issue has become central to the Islamists’ campaign to rid the island of so-called Western influence. Having said that, in Saudi Arabia itself there is also a thriving sex industry, albeit in a less brazen way than exists in Bahrain, something attested to by the frequent raids of brothels by the Saudi religious police, even in the holy cities of Mecca and Medina.

Where Saudi Arabia – and Iran and Egypt – really come into their own is with what are called “temporary marriages.” The rules vary, because of the different Shia and Sunni traditions, but they can last for anything from an hour to a year or two, and are perfectly legal in these three countries. Moralizers of various stripes argue that temporary marriages are basically a cover for prostitution, and often they are; but in some ways it does not matter what you call them. That 70 percent of all marriages in Saudi Arabia these days are reportedly of the temporary variety is a wonderfully uplifting statistic. The country’s religion has found a back door permitting what it ostensibly forbids, which is what every functioning religion, or for that matter ideology, needs to do, if ordinary people are to live sane and healthy lives.

Here, as in many other aspects of life that often baffle Western observers with their inconsistency; Middle Eastern sexuality has once again proven itself solidly resistant to restrictive and oppressive dogma.

Q. We in the West seem sometimes obsessed with the idea of sex and sexuality in the Middle East, as some of the commentary you highlight about suicide bombers and the veil illustrates. Why do we take this attitude, and how does it thwart our understanding of and interactions with the Middle East?

A. In any civilized culture, anyone arguing that suicide bombings by Islamists are the result of sexual repression among males in the Middle East would achieve little more than making himself an object of scorn and ridicule. Alas, the West has long since ceased to be civilized when it comes to discussions of sexuality, and the fact that there are pundits who actually make a living spouting such nonsense should be a source of eternal shame for us all.

It isn’t surprising that such pundits are often avowed Zionists. For them, focusing on the alleged sexual hang-ups of the September 11 suicide bombers is a very useful way to deflect attention from complex foreign policy issues, including America’s role in the Middle East and specifically its unconditional support for Israel.

Q. What was the impact of the Islamic Revolution in Iran on the sexual mores of the Middle East? What about the “family values” revolution in the West? Where does that leave us today?

A. Numerous events during 1979 in the Middle East, and in particular the Iranian revolution and the siege of Mecca by radical Islamists, ushered in a wave of Islamic fundamentalism that fed into and changed the region’s political and religious discourse surrounding personal choices, including the most fundamental ones involving sex.

But we should remember, too, that in 1979 and 1980 elections also brought to power Ronald Reagan in the United States, with the support of Christian evangelicals, and Margaret Thatcher in Britain, whose “family values” rhetoric was no less extreme for not being explicitly couched in religious rhetoric. As a result, we all find ourselves in the midst not of a clash of civilizations, as is popularly thought, but a convergence of religious fundamentalisms.

With this intermixing of sex, politics, and religion, hypocrisy has inevitably grown in the West, as it has in the Middle East. Deviation in both regions is increasingly defined as disorderly, dirty, and sinful by puritans of various stripes. My book draws attention to the central paradox that, as intolerance has increased, so has vice, because as the range of acceptable behavior decreases so the definition of vice broadens, and more people therefore are by default engaging in unacceptable behavior.

Once we recognize that exchange between consenting people is the foundation of any liberal society, then we realize that accepting sexual variety is a sign of a healthy, not a corrupt, society. When sex outside of controlled channels is defined as deviance, it is the most exposed, the least powerful, who suffer. Behind the veil of vice lies the sanctimony of those who would impose their way – be it sharia or evangelicalism of a Christian or so-called feminist hue – on people who are defined as sinners, the fallen, and so requiring protection and salvation. The vice lies in the exploitation, in the coercion, that results from forcing natural human drives and needs into the shadows.

That is the ultimate perversity, and it is what the West today has most in common with the Middle East.

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When asked if they would like to have sex with me, 30 percent of women said, 'Yes', while the other 70 percent replied, 'What, again?'."

Former Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi, 2011

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Pro-rape campaigner Roosh V forced to cancel UK 'anti-feminist' meetings amid safety fears

Pro-rape campaigner Roosh V has cancelled a series of meetings around the world amid fears over the 'safety and privacy' of the men who attend.

The self-styled 'anti-feminist', whose real name is Daryush Valizadeh, had set up gatherings in cities in the UK, US, Canada and Australia.

But in a new post on his website last night, the American apologised to his supporters for having to 'let them down' by cancelling the controversial meetings.

He wrote: "I can no longer guarantee the safety or privacy of the men who want to attend on February 6, especially since most of the meetups can not be made private in time.

"While I can’t stop men who want to continue meeting in private groups, there will be no official Return Of Kings meetups. The listing page has been scrubbed of all locations.

"I apologize to all the supporters who are let down by my decision."

It is understood that a number of the planned gatherings had already been moved to a private property - possibly due to the number of men expected to attend, or for safety reasons.

And while Roosh V is concerned about his members' safety, women in some cities have voiced their own concerns online about the 'neo-masculinist' gatherings.

They have warned other females to 'try not to go anywhere alone' this weekend, The Guardian reports.

The cancellation of Roosh V's meetings comes as more than 25,000 people have signed a petition to ban the 'anti-feminist' from holding meetings in the UK.

The petition against him was started on campaign site 38 degrees and calls on police and crime commissioners, local police forces and the Government to stop Roosh V in his tracks.

It says: "Supporters of known 'legal rape' advocate and 'neo-masculinist' misogynist creator of 'Return of the Kings' Roosh V will congregate on Saturday 6 February, in eight UK cities: Cardiff, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Newcastle, Manchester, Shrewsbury and London.

"As he spreads his hateful speech and guides people on how to exploit, manipulate and rape women, he's putting the welfare of women at risk. He needs to be stopped by all genders, within our communities.

"Having written a number of jaw-droppingly offensive blog posts and published books, Roosh V believes that men should stop asking for permission, and that alpha males should slowly break down the confidence in women to get what they want.

"He is a hugely dangerous individual. His fans have extensive forums online, detailing where to 'pick up the easiest girls' in each city, naming bars, venues and strategies.

"Roosh V needs to be stopped. Please sign."

Another petition to ban the leader from holding an event in Cardiff on Saturday has so far gained more than 7,000 signatures and dubs Valizadeh an 'evil man'. It also posts a link to an article about him.

On his website, believed to have had a million visitors, Roosh V claims a solution for rape charges against men would be to “make rape legal if done on private property.”

“I propose that we make the violent taking of a woman not punishable by law when done off public grounds,” he wrote.

Cardiff petition signatory Briony J was unimpressed.

“Rape legal on private property?” she said.

“You could be lying in your own bed at night, have your home broken into, and be raped and that’d be legal? I don’t think so.”

Only straight men will be allowed to attend the meeting, and women attempting to enter the event will be filmed and broadcast on his global “anti-feminist” network.

“Sounds like he’s inciting crime – how can that be allowed?” Peter J said.

Valizadeh’s books include “Bang: The Pickup Bible That Helps You Get More Lays.”

“My niece is at uni in Cardiff,” Julie D said on 38 Degrees.

“I want her and all women to be safe. This filth needs not to come to this country.”

And Paul S claimed “those who preach hate are as evil as the terrorist who pulls the trigger.”

The self-proclaimed “anti-feminist” is followed by tens of thousands of supporters on social media, and regularly posts articles campaigning against rape laws and feminism.

His website is believed to be have been visited by more than one million people worldwide.

South Wales Police and Crime Commissioner Alun Michael said he has written to the Home Secretary Theresa May asking her to consider the petition.

He said: “It has been brought to my attention that an individual who appears to intend to cause harassment and distress in the furtherance of his agenda – and to encourage and incite others to do so – is encouraging people to gather in Cardiff for purposes that are both unpleasant and potentially unlawful.

“I am reassured that South Wales Police are taking the operational policing issues seriously in reviewing risk and protecting the public.

“I have written to the Home Secretary to ask her to urgently consider the petition.

“It may make sense for people to petition the Home Secretary, who has powers to act in relation to a ban on entering the country, which I do not have, or to petition parliament to secure a debate.”

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Terrorists are developing a new tactics. Instead of killing victims, they just castrate them, and let them live on. Planned for Swedish and Norwegian men. Perpetrators will just get 6 months in jail.

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North Korean Women Smuggled to China

I thought this was a interesting article.

Will Female Shortage In China Bring Down North Korean Regime?

Chinese men are buying North Korean women as wives.

But it's easy for Chinese, including smugglers and human traffickers, to cross illegally into North Korea, they say, and this props up a thriving black-market border trade that helps keep the barren North Korean economy afloat.

Dandong natives such as laid-off factory worker Lao Zhou, whose picturesque home town draws tourists eager to spy on North Korea with telescopes, shake their heads when they talk about refugees.

"North Korean women make good wives. They are beautiful and hard-working," he said, echoing an oft-repeated view. "It doesn't cost much to buy a North Korean girl for a wife and just a few thousand kwai (hundreds of dollars) to get them a residency permit."

There is also a slave trade in prostitutes. The demand for prostitutes will likely rise right along with the demand for wives.

Consider the larger context for this report about wife buying and female sex trade. On my FuturePundit blog I've reported on the sex ratio imbalance in China caused by the selective abortion of females.

Li said the normal newborn sex proportion is 100:104-107, and if China's disproportionate figure is allowed to continue unchecked, there would be 30 to 40 million marriage-age men who would be single all their lives by 2020. "Such serious gender disproportion poses a major threat to the healthy, harmonious and sustainable growth of the nation's population and would trigger such crimes and social problems as mercenary marriage, abduction of women and prostitution," Li said.

Some believe this sex ratio imbalance will make China militarily aggressive and they may be right.

In a new book, Bare Branches: Security Implications of Asia's Surplus Male Population (MIT Press), Valerie M. Hudson and Andrea M. den Boer warn that the spread of sex selection is giving rise to a generation of restless young men who will not find mates. History, biology, and sociology all suggest that these "surplus males" will generate high levels of crime and social disorder, the authors say. Even worse, they continue, is the possibility that the governments of India and China will build up huge armies in order to provide a safety valve for the young men's aggressive energies.

But consider a different possibility: Chinese men may buy so many North Korean wives that North Korea will either become militarily aggressive or collapse from within. This is not implausible. Those 30 to 40 million single men in China in the year 2020 mean there wil be 3 to 4 times more single men in China than there are women in North Korea. The Chinese will be more affluent than the North Koreans unless radical changes happen to North Korea's economy. North Korea is the place where Chinese men will have the best competitive advantage in angling for wives. The other East Asian countries are not nearly as poor as North Korea and North Korea shares a long 1,416 km land border with China.

China's economy is growing rapidly. Buying power of Chinese men is rising. Even poor Chinese farmers can afford to buy North Korean women.

Lee, the former clerk, said she was fooled into believing she would have a good life in China. "One day, a man from my home town came to see me. He was looking for good-looking women from North Korea to go to China. The prettier the better. I decided on the spot to go.

"Of course, he fooled me. He said he would introduce me to a good man, a university graduate, who was looking for a wife. Then I realized North Korean women were being sold at a cheap price to rural farmers in China."

The fact that even a rural farmer in China can afford to buy a North Korean wife means that there are far more people in China with the buying power to acquire a North Korean wife than there are North Korean women.

Expect the hostility of North Korean men toward China to increase.

Ryu remembers a woman six months pregnant arriving at the camp. The baby's father was Chinese. Four guards grabbed the woman's limbs and threw her toward the ceiling over and over until the woman aborted the fetus. Ryu helped clean up the blood afterwards. "The guards said they hated Chinese babies," says Ryu. "The North Koreans hate the Chinese now, because they are rich and betrayed socialism."

China has been cracking down on North Koreans trying to cross the border into China. But official corruption in China is sufficiently widespread that black market forces will probably prevail over official policy as a consequence of the rising buying power of single men desperate for wives.

Ms Kim was picked up a year after getting married and giving birth to a daughter. Her new family pleaded for her release, arguing that the baby needed her mother because she was still breastfeeding. Ms Kim says they paid a 10,000RMB bribe for her freedom. Three years later she is well established and has a residence permit.

Chinese men will pressure the Chinese government to allow North Korean women to pass into China. The Chinese government will see these women as a source of women to reduce the frustrations of single men who can not find Chinese wives. Chinese leaders are going to have to weigh the foreign policy and domestic policy consequences of their border policy with North Korea. If they continue to clamp down this may just encourage more corruption.

Chinese money is also going to flow to North Korean border guards and officials and corrupt them as well. This is already happening. So the North Korean guards are not all immune to the enticements of cash in exchange for looking the other way. As living standards rise in China and the female shortage worsens the amount of money available for smuggling women out of North Korea will rise.

The shortage of women in China may end up posing an existential threat to the Pyongyang regime more powerful than anything US policy makers are likely to do. North Korean leaders might react to this threat by engaging in market liberalization reforms aimed at raising North Korean living standards enough to reduce the level of desperation of North Korean women.

The regime in North Korea faces a more general economic threat from China because of rising wages in China. The higher the wages go the greater the incentive for Northeast China factory managers and other businesses to turn to the black market to supply cheap North Korean labor. This will pull both men and women out of North Korea. Will that destabilize the regime more or less than the selective removal of women from North Korea?

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Feminism, by creating artificial scarcity of sexual resources, is responsible for much of the deadly infighting among men, as well as male suicides.

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Anesthesia Awareness—What If I Am Awake During Surgery?

Updated on November 4, 2016

TahoeDoc HealDove

Anesthesia Awareness - Awake Under Anesthesia

Fear of being awake under anesthesia, called anesthesia awareness or intraoperative awareness, causes a lot of anxiety for patients facing surgery.

Having anesthesia is scary for most people. As an anesthesiologist, I usually meet patients right before their surgeries. People facing surgery have many apprehensions and fears. More and more are concerned about anesthesia awareness.

I repeatedly hear that patients are often more apprehensive about the anesthesia than the surgery itself. And of all the fears that people have about the anesthetic side effects and anesthetic complications, the one I hear most often is, "I'm afraid of waking up during the surgery."

Anesthesia awareness has received a great deal of attention in the press over the last few years and even a full-length movie, called "Awake," capitalized on this fearful concept (I have reluctantly included the trailer here). But what is it really? Why and to whom does it occur? Keep reading to find out why it most likely won't happen to you.

"Awake" - Sensationalizing Anesthesia Awareness

What Is Anesthesia Awareness?

Anesthesia awareness, also called intraoperative awareness refers to a specific situation where a person is under general anesthesia for surgery and regains consciousness during the surgical procedure.

The definition of general anesthesia includes induction and maintenance of loss of consciousness. This means that you should not be able to wake up until the surgery is over. You do not respond to voice or painful stimuli.

For various reasons, some people do regain consciousness when they are under general anesthesia. For most people, this involves a very brief, hazy memory. Some people are aware of what is being said, but cannot move or indicate that they are awake. Still, there is usually no sensation of pain or awareness of the operation. The very rare, unfortunate few are awake, cannot move and do feel the surgery being done.

What Is NOT True Anesthesia Awareness?

There are many situations that are confused with anesthesia awareness.

Sedation anesthesia. I often have patients tell me they had anesthesia awareness during their colonoscopy or other procedure. These procedures are commonly done under intravenous sedation anesthesia. While the intravenous sedation drugs do cause sleepiness and often amnesia- you don't remember the procedure, they do not cause unconsciousness. It is not at all abnormal to be awake and remember these procedures. With the sedation, pain medications are either injected at the surgical site or given in the IV or both. You should still not be uncomfortable, even if you are awake, during surgeries or procedures under sedation.

Sedation plus spinal or epidural. Neither sedation or spinal/epidural anesthesia makes you unconscious during your operation. If you have spinal or epidural anesthesia to block the pain of surgery, you are usually also given sedation. The same is true for local anesthesia as well. In this case, it is not unusual or abnormal to have memories of being in the operating room. This is not anesthetic awareness.

Dreaming. Some people actually dream during their anesthetic, or more likely, when transitioning from unconsciousness back to wakefulness at the end of surgery. These dreams are often interpreted as actual wakefulness, but are not.

Waking at the end of surgery, but not able to move. When you return to consciousness, sometimes your brain is more awake than your body. You are waking up, but cannot move for a couple minutes. You can hear the anesthesiologist talking to you or feel the nurses putting bandages on your incisions, but cannot yet respond. The anesthesia wears off at different rates for different people. If your surgery is over, but you are still in the operating room and have memories of this, it is a normal variant of the emergence phase from anesthesia. Most people are conscious when they leave the operating room, post anesthesia, and many are talking and asking questions, but may not remember it later. If you do remember this phase, it's ok. The same is true for the beginning of your anesthetic, the anesthesia induction. Vague, hazy memories of being in the operating room are confusing and can be mistaken for being awake during the anesthetic.

Risk Factors for Intraoperative Awareness

Certain risk factors make anesthesia awareness more likely.

Type of surgery and type of anesthesia. Certain types of surgery are associated with higher incidences of anesthesia awareness. Surgeries where using lower concentrations and amounts of anesthetics is necessary to protect patients lead to more intraoperative awareness. Emergency cesarean sections, trauma surgeries, and open heart surgeries are the most likely cases to be associated with anesthesia awareness. Anesthesia challenges the body's physiology. Heart rates vary and blood pressures drop. When they cannot be adequately managed by giving more medication, the anesthetic must be "lightened" in order to NOT endanger the patients' lives.

There are certain brain and spinal cord surgeries that require that no anesthesia gas be used in order to not interfere with the nerve monitoring being used to prevent paralysis. The anesthetic called TIVA (total intra-venous anesthesia) also predisposes to higher rates of anesthesia awareness.

Type of patient. Patients who use illegal drugs such as cocaine and methamphetamine may be more likely to have intraoperative awareness. Not only do these drugs cause dangerous fluctuations in heart rate and blood pressure, they make the metabolism of anesthetic drugs much more unpredictable.

Some prescription medications. Certain prescription medications may also increase the risk. Anesthetics are adjusted throughout the surgery based on surgical stimulation level, type of anesthesia and the heart rate, breathing rate and blood pressure of the patient. Patients who take medications that block the normal increases in heart rate or blood pressure may have their signs of light anesthesia masked by the medication.

Statistics on Awareness Under Anesthesia

The American Society of Anesthesiologists estimates that some degree of anesthesia awareness occurs in about 1 in 1000 general anesthetics. It is believed that the majority of these cases are during the induction (beginning) of the anesthetic when the drugs haven't fully taken effect. Likewise, a great many cases are at the end of surgery, during anesthetic emergence, when the anesthetic is wearing off but isn't completely gone. These are not intraoperative awareness as the surgery is not occurring. Because the memories are fuzzy and confusing, patients often don't know that this wasn't during the surgery itself.

There are no exact statistics on true intraoperative awareness cases that occur during the surgery and cause distress and lasting trauma to the patient. It is, however, an area of active study and research.

Again, talk to your doctors and ask questions if you are remotely concerned that this has happened to you.

Prevention: What You Can Do to Prevent Intraoperative Awareness.

Talk to your anesthesia doctor and provide accurate information. This is your best defense against intraoperative awareness.

So, be honest with your doctor about:

Your fears. Usually, this will help calm you. While no absolute guarantees can ever be made, your doctor can help pinpoint whether or not you have higher risk than average for this complication and let you know how he or she will address the risk. Alcohol consumption. Chronic, excessive alcohol intake results in a higher need for anesthetic medications. Illegal drugs use. Your anesthesiologist needs to know this to figure out which and how much anesthesia it will take to get you to sleep and keep you there. They are not there to judge you, but cannot keep you safe if they don't have all relevant information. All of your prescriptions and supplements. Different medications affect the metabolism of anesthesia differently. And just because supplements are "natural" or "alternative" doesn't mean they don't have side-effects or don't interfere with anesthetic medicines. How the Anesthesiologist Monitors During Surgery

The anesthesiologist, using intraoperative monitoring, will be watching your heart rate, blood pressure, and breathing rate (if a ventilator doesn't need to be used). Increases in these seen on the intraop monitors indicates that the anesthesia is too "light." These parameters generally increase before any awareness occurs. The anesthesiologist is constantly adjusting the delivery of the anesthesia gas and giving other medication in the IV to keep the anesthesia level where it needs to be. The anesthesia is increased to ensure adequate depth of anesthesia if it's too light. Likewise, even though you are unconscious, your body will reflexively move to stimulation if the anesthetic depth needs to be increased. This also occurs before awareness.

The various brain monitors on the market have not been shown to reduce anesthesia awareness, despite what the makers of these expensive devices say. They do provide other useful information and may or may not be used if your hospital has them, at the discretion of the anesthesiologist.

BIS Monitor

A study published in the "New England Journal of Medicine" (August 18, 2011) has actually shown that relying on a BIS (brain) monitor can actually increase the incidence of intraoperative awareness vs. using measurement of the anesthetic concentration (the usual technique). This sounds counter-intuitive, but to me is not surprising. Here's why...

The BIS monitor (which I use for other information) gives a number that is indicates the level of consciousness. Other indicators include heart rate, blood pressure and breathing rate/pattern changes (if the patient is breathing on their own). In my experience (disclaimer-based on only my experience, not scientific study), the changes in vital signs happen first. Heart rate goes up before you see a change in the BIS number. That means that providers who rely only on the BIS number and ignore the changes in vital signs may be missing the chance to prevent awareness. The awareness may have already happened before the change in BIS number is seen. There is a lag between the event and the change in BIS.

Personally, I try to use all the data available to me and not rely on the BIS monitor for prevention of awareness. Vital signs to me are more reliable, happen earlier (before awareness can occur in most cases) and should not be ignored to focus on the BIS monitor. The BIS does provide other useful info, but is not as reliable as the manufacturer may claim to prevent awareness.

Treatment for Anesthesia Awareness

If you have had a case of genuine intraoperative awareness, let your doctor, surgeon, or anesthesiologist know right away. Many people do well with just an explanation of why it might have happened. Others suffer short-term or even long-term post-traumatic stress disorder. In those cases, an evaluation by a psychologist or psychiatrist and possible medications may be needed, usually on a short-term basis.

If you aren't sure if you had true anesthesia awareness, speak to your surgeon or contact the anesthesiologist. Most people who aren't sure have had one of the other experiences -- like sedation, dreaming, or waking at the end and being confused about the time -- and feel much better after having their questions answered.

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This site teaches an understanding of reality. Reality is brutal. Death is often brutal. And if death isn't brutal for the way it happens, then it is still brutal as a fact of life. We are all goners.

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Everything About Duck Penises Is Interesting

OMG, Republicans. STOP. Stop ruining everything that is hilarious. You know how once in a while conservatives get together and make a list of all the government-funded stuff they don't think is worth spending money on, in order to make liberals look like wicked cutpurses swindling bewildered old grannies?* (In this metaphor, America is the granny.) And also to draw attention away from things that are maybe actually expensive, such as defense spending and imprisoning millions and millions of low-level drug offenders? WELL. They're at it again, and this time one of the frivolities in their sights is a Yale ornithologist who received $400,000 to study duck penises. It's a relatively small amount of money, in the grand scheme of government spending, but it happens to combine conservatives' two least favorite things: scientific progress and sexy intercourse. Therefore, ABOLISH IT.

As Michael Tomasky at the Daily Beast points out, NO. NO NO NO. Not only are duck penises worthy of study, they are also hella interesting and weird. And if you, like me, have been having nightmares and daymares about that terrifying slow-motion video of the unfurling duck penis (see above, bladow!!!) for yeeeeeeeears now, you understand why it's important to get to the bottom of these things. Before they get to the bottom of you. Uncomfortable linemouth. '_'

Long story short, male ducks are rapists with exploding harpoon-penises.

Here, in Prum's words, is what he studied and learned:

"Most birds don't have a penis. Ducks do. They still have it from the reptilian ancestor that they shared with mammals," he said.

The duck's penis is stored inside the body, and when it becomes erect, the process of insemination is "explosive," Prum said. The duck's penis becomes erect within a third of a second, at the same time it enters the female duck's body. Ejaculation is immediate, and then the penis starts to regress. The length of the duck penis, as mentioned in the tweets, grows to 8 or 9 inches during the summer mating season. In winter, it shrinks to less than an inch.

In duck ponds, Prum said, a lot of forced copulation occurs. Forced copulation is what it sounds like — rape in nature. Even gang rape happens among ducks. And Prum found that while 40 to 50 percent of duck sex happens by forced copulation, only 2 to 4 percent of inseminations result from it (meaning times the female duck ends up with a fertilized egg).

But! But!!! The female duck literally has ways of shutting that whole thing down.

"The question is why does that happen? How does a female prevent fertilization by forced copulation?" he said. "The answer has to do with taking advantage of what males have evolved — this corkscrew shaped penis."

Prum said the duck penis is a corkscrew whose direction runs counterclockwise. Female ducks, he said, have evolved a complex vagina also shaped like a corkscrew — but a clockwise one.

"This is literally an anti-screw anatomy," he said.

When females choose their own partners — in other words, solicit copulation — the muscles in the vagina are dilated and expanded. So the anti-screw effect is negated.

"The females are enormously, amazingly successful at preventing fertilization by forced copulation," he said.

All of this is amazing and gross and hilarious and delightful and awful and fascinating. And, sorry, conservatives, you don't just get to stymie legit scientific research simply because it has the word "penis" in it. Dummies.

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The Spanish masturbation guru Fran Sanchez is on the wrong path. Just imagine him handling his sexuality alone on his couch or in the toilet. A picture of pity, he is.

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