Life and Style

French study finds higher incidence in elderly people who have had operations

Last Night's TV: House of Saddam, BBC2<br />Dangerous Jobs for Girl, Channel 4

It's a bit of a stressful day in the House of Saddam. George W has just announced that armageddon will be unleashed in 48 hours, one of Saddam's wives is rushing about the place with an assault rifle trying to get the children organised and Saddam himself is saying goodbye to Uday and Qusay, both of them chips off the bloodstained old block. And then the BBC's historical soap opera – The Sopranos with Scud missiles – flashes back to a happier time in the tyrant's life. It is 1979 and Saddam – incorrigible old multi-tasker that he is – has decided to have two parties in one. As his daughter celebrates her seventh birthday, Saddam takes the Ba'ath leader aside and makes him an offer he can't refuse: "Retire now and nominate me as your successor." Colleagues who dissent from this unexpected turn of events are introduced to the terminally mind-changing properties of a .45 bullet, in several cases delivered by ministers eager to show their support for the new president.

Lend them your ears: The best of this spring's audiobook releases

Sue Gaisford discovers old classics given new life and some modern greats in the making

Hypnotist entrances himself for surgery

By Jeremy Laurance, Health Editor

Cech will wear face mask with helmet

Petr Cech insisted yesterday that it was possible he could be back in action in two weeks – despite having 50 stitches inserted into a face wound and undergoing plastic surgery after accidentally being kicked in the head by his team-mate Tal Ben Haim.

Son of Rambow, 12A<br/>Awake, 15

You don't have to have been a 10-year-old in 1982 &ndash; or even a Stallone fan &ndash; to fall for this bittersweet nostalgic comedy

Skeleton reveals ancient Greek brain surgery

Greek archaeologists have uncovered a rare find, the skeletal remains of a young woman who appears to have undergone brain surgery – nearly 1,800 years ago. The bones, which date from the third century, were found in one of more than 1,000 graves excavated in an ancient cemetery near the city of Veria in Greece.

Steve Fullarton: Spanish Civil War veteran

Steve Fullarton was the last survivor of the 500 Scots who fought with the International Brigades against General Franco's rebels in the Spanish Civil War of 1936-39. Aged just 18, and halfway through his engineering apprenticeship when he crossed the Pyrenees in April 1938, he was also one of the youngest of the 2,300 men and women from the British Isles – of whom nearly one in four died – who enlisted as soldiers or medics to defend the Spanish Republic. Indeed, he had to lie about his age, since the Communist Party – the recruiting agent for the volunteers – had a policy of only accepting those aged over 21.

Professor T. Cecil Gray: General practitioner whose 'Liverpool Technique' established modern methods in anaesthesia

Thomas Cecil Gray, anaesthetist: born Liverpool 11 March 1913; Demonstrator in Anaesthesia, Liverpool University 1942, 1944-46, Reader in Anaesthesia, and Head of Department of Anaesthesia 1947-59, Professor of Anaesthesia 1959-76 (Emeritus), Dean of Postgraduate Medical Studies 1966-70, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine 1970-76; Editor, British Journal of Anaesthesia 1948-64; President, Anaesthesia Section, Royal Society of Medicine 1955-56; President, Association of Anaesthetists of Great Britain and Ireland 1957-59; Dean of the Faculty of Anaesthetists, Royal College of Surgeons of England 1964-67; CBE 1976; married 1937 Marjorie Hely (died 1978; one son, one daughter), 1979 Pamela Corning (one son); died Formby, Merseyside 5 January 2008.

Coccyx: Bruised and uncomfortable

I have a bruised coccyx, which gives me considerable discomfort when sitting. I had a cortisone injection and manipulation under anaesthetic six months ago. This gave me a pain-free three-four months, but my consultant cautioned me about repeating it soon. How can I manage or cure the condition? I use a seat pad with a "V" cut-out, but getting up from the seated position is painful.

Claire Beale on Advertising

Adland's discovered the green issue - and now it's the only one in town

Endoscopy: something to fear?

I am due to have an endoscopy to discover the cause of stomach pains. The pains seem like indigestion, but are intermittent. Food doesn't make the pain better or worse - in fact, it seems unrelated to eating. My greatest fear is the endoscopy - I can't bear the thought of a flexible telescope being shoved down my throat. Will I be put to sleep?

Poppy Folly: Your stars, baby. Read them and weep

Week of 6 February 2005

Families try to get on with life amid carnage

CHECHEN FAMILIES are trying to keep up a semblance of normality amid the Russian assault, which targets civilians and guerrillas alike.
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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture