Indians have been behind such pioneering ideas as the flushing toilet and Snakes and Ladders and now a novel new cure for nosebleeds and ‘ground-breaking’ research into cat bites can be added to the list.
Two Indian scientists have won prizes at this year’s Ig Nobel Awards for ‘Improbable Research’ for their pioneering efforts.
Dr Sonal Saraiya from the Detroit Medical Centre ‘discovered’ that packing pieces of cured pork into a child’s nose could stop life-threatening nosebleeds whilst Naren Ramakrishnan was honoured for his investigations into the connection between cat bites and depression.
Dr Saraiya said her pork cure worked only when conventional methods failed and was particularly efficient in patients with haemophilia, a condition in which blood does not clot properly.
According to her team’s study a four-year-old patient’s nostrils were packed with cured pork twice and “the nasal vaults successfully stopped nasal haemorrhage promptly (and) effectively.”
The method worked as the pork contained ‘clotting factors’ whilst the high salt content in the meat helped draw out the fluid from the nose.
Naren Ramakrishnan picked up the ‘public health prize’ along with colleagues for investigating correlations between cat bites and depression.
Their research called for medical professionals to check for signs of depression in patients who seek attention for cat bites as recent ‘data mining’ had shown that victims – especially females – were vulnerable to succumb to depression following a feline accident.
“While no causative link is known to explain this association, there is growing evidence to suggest that the relationship between cats and human mental illness, such as depression, warrants further investigation”, Mr Ramakrinan said.
The Ig Awards, a spoof of the Nobel Prizes, is organized by the satirical science magazine Annals of Improbable Research.
This year’s top prize was won by a team which conducted a study looking into why bananas are slipper when stepped on.
By humans, not cats.