Whilst I am trying to get my posts back I ask for your patience.  

This is a good opportunity I think,  to start hosting this blog myself and to think about a new format 

Just published a new book

Using non-scientific and non-medical terms, this simple, interesting, jargon-free book explains:- How your immune system protects you, what happens when the immune system goes wrong and simple (cost-free) ways to help your body fight infections. Immune diseases such as allergy … Continue reading

Please get your childrens eyes tested ASAP

EL REALEJO, Nicaragua (July 23, 2007) - A deaf...

EL REALEJO, Nicaragua (July 23, 2007) - A deaf patient gives the OK sign to Lt. Cmdr. Brian Hatch, an optometrist attached to Military Sealift Command hospital ship USNS Comfort (T-AH 20), during an eye exam at the El Realejo Health Care Center. Comfort is on a four-month humanitarian deployment to Latin America and the Caribbean to provide medical treatment to patients in a dozen countries. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Elizabeth Allen (RELEASED) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I sent the email below to all my mum/dad friends to let everyone know what happened with my youngest daughters eyes and to say that if you haven’t had your kids eyes tested please do it soon. It was suggested that I also place this on my blog to let other mums know, so very briefly, here is our story

The optician

My eldest daughter (age 6) had been apparently seeing double for about a year and been doing eye excercises, on a trip for her to the optician with her dad, I mentioned that my youngest (age 4) should have her eyes tested too.

To our amazement the optician said she had 20% total vision. We were astounded and thinking that I must have missed it, being a bad mum chatted to her nursery, my friends, my mum etc all hadn’t seen it either.

The referral

We got an urgent NHS referral and I am still trying to make this NHS booking by the way! and in the meantime saw a private consultant. The private consultant (who examined them thoroughly for at least half an hour each) said that there was nothing wrong with either of them. I chose to believe this as I saw nothing wrong with either and my eldest is a bit of a hypochondriac (he said the double vision was normal, for example when you hold a finger too close to your eyes).
However he suggested that to double check, with no urgency, we should see an opthalmist.

The opthalmist

The opthalmist (still in the private system, as cant get the NHS Appointment yet!) said that my youngest cant see out of her left eye AT ALL. She has compensated extremely well and the reason the consultant didn’t see it was that he covered her right eye to see her left eye vision (she must have peeked through the holes. Whereas the opthalmist put a patch over her right eye and confirmed that she has no depth perception and very restricted site (I was at this appointment and it was very clear to me, for the first time) which she somehow compensates for extraordinarily well. Also eldest DOES have peripheral double vision which is not normal.

Anyway, they are all Ok and both being treated, my youngest may not get vision back in her left eye, but she’s so fine with just the one eye that we haven’t got a problem and the double vison of my eldest daughter vision can be corrected, but again she s fine with it, it isn’t affecting anything.

BUT to all you mums/dads

I was told that they should have seen an optician by the age of three as if they do have problems their eyes are formed by the age of 6 years, so have little time to get treated.

I personally think that the NHS have great doctors and if we had got the NHS appointment as quick as we got the private referral we would have been treated much quicker, as the private consultant didn’t pick up anything wrong- not sure what to make of this as if I thought there was something wrong I would have been sure to get a second opinion, but as the consultant said there was nothing wrong I followed it up slowly, if you see what I mean, thank goodness he said to see someone else just in case!

ANYWAY, just thought I would share this with you in case your kids haven’t had their eyes checked yet.

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Why women leave science

I was very pleased to see the issue of  being raised in Steven Swinford’s article Sunday 11th May with the identification of the “hidden brain drain“. There are many factors involved in why women leave science. For example, the UK … Continue reading

3 Deaths and a new blog

Five weeks a go my PR advisor suggested that I start a personal blog so that people get to know more about me and my work.  Very enthusiastically I bought the name, designed how it would look and started writing the articles. The advice was not to write anything too personal: it should not be about how I juggle full time motherhood (my husband works fulltime and we have no childcare, my work is juggled around school and nursery times, evenings and all weekends), or anything about my personal life,  but a focused blog about building the company, my thoughts of where we are going and how we have come this far etc.


However in the five weeks that have passed I have had three personal experiences which have affected the way that I view both work and home and I thought I would share these with you.


The first was the death my computer, I thought this was an absolute tragedy (although I do backup and have excellent IT support from my brother), until my mother went into hospital with heart failure five weeks ago on Saturday.  I left starbucks (or as my family, friends and company call it ‘my office’ where I regularly use the hotspot to catch up on the weeks work) to rush to the hospital and make sure all was OK.  For the next week all my family (including my IT support) were at the hospital ensuring that my mother had a full recovery.  After the week all was well and I took my kids to legoland for the weekend and my brother went abroad with his children for the school holidays.


We arrived back on the Sunday after a refreshing break.  On the Monday my health fanatic father was taken to hospital with what we soon discovered was a very aggressive cancer that had penetrated his whole body.  He stayed in hospital for three weeks with visits of increasing intensity from all the family.  On the third week I with my mother, brother and uncles started to stay with him all day at the hospital and sleep in his room overnight, until he died  peacefully with us around him on  the Friday.


The day before he died a friend of mine also died of cancer, again a quick illness and very unexpected to all who knew her.


Now I don’t want this to be a depressing blog.  My father led a good life.  His wife is well provided for and children are old enough and settled to look after themselves, we all got to say goodbye and have nothing but happy memories that will live on.  I am writing this however for the triple shock factor.


My computer (OK my computer dying now seems very unimportant) _ I backed up, had firewalls, used up to date anti-virus software, did everything that I thought was right and yet on a Saturday in Starbucks five weeks ago I lost the central part of my company which was not recovered for four weeks (thank goodness I had my brother to sort it out)


My father did everything right, he was the healthiest person that I knew of any age,  he ate well, exercised fanatically, always went to the doctor for regular checkups and had a very positive attitude to life and health


My friend was under forty with two young children and apparently very healthy (I was chatting to her in starbucks only a few weeks ago and all was fine)


Conclusions:  I will leave nothing to chance in business of in my personal life.


My husband and I are putting our affairs in order next week, we will get our wills updated  and our insurances put in place as we have responsibilities to our children


Together with the members of my company I will make sure that we are a smooth working machine, everyone can do their job independently and if someone is away the systems will be in place to do the required work until their return.  As we have a responsibility to each other and the scientific community that is now beginning to rely on us for up to- to –date informative events


So apologies for the start of this blog as its personal and not up beat (and apologies to my PR advisors too as I have done it all wrong!), but this is all that has been happening with me, since the blog started.


The articles that follow were all started before this one and now my computer has been resurrected and my father and friend have been put to rest they are being finished and will be posted soon