Life and Style General view of Solihull Hospital, West Midlands where the now-suspended surgeon operated

The procedure leaves some breast tissue behind and is not recognised by national guidelines, because of the greater risk of cancer recurring

GOING DOWN: Smiths Industries

SHARES of Smiths Industries fell 15 per cent, on disappointment that first-half profit growth came only from its aerospace business. This grew by 42 per cent, but the other two businesses, which produce ventilation and other industrial equipment and hospital supplies, saw little growth.



Right of Reply: Michael Wilks

The chairman of the BMA's ethics committee replies to an article calling for compulsory organ donation

Letter: No `collapse'

Sir: Whilst I hope to be able to comment, in due course, and following publication of the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry Report, on the issues arising from this tragic case, might I take this opportunity to correct a minor, but irritating, error in the reporting of my evidence to the Inquiry.

Health: Is your therapist a friend?

A good counsellor offers many of the qualities you might look for in a friendship. By Paul Gordon

Letter: Fighting CJD

Sir: Medical experts are considering scrapping surgical instruments after each contact with a CJD-carrying tissue, including possibly tonsils. While conventional sterilisation techniques, using overheated steam, are obviously ineffective in killing off the prions, which survive up to 360C, electrothermal appliances would probably offer a satisfactory solution while not melting the instruments - an induction annealing furnace, or an industrial microwave oven.

Leading Article: The reality of rationing in the health service

PARLIAMENTARY DEBATES, such as yesterday's on the NHS, are all very well: but they will have little impact so long as Honourable Members seem to inhabit a different world from the rest of us.

Letter: Healing the NHS

Sir: Your article "Undercover monitors to check on GPs" (4 January) is misleading. In November 1998, the General Medical Council decided that specialists and general practitioners must be able to demonstrate - on a regular basis - that they are keeping themselves up to date and remain fit to practise in their chosen field. A steering group has been set up to carry out further work in preparation for further discussion, on the implementation issues, in February.

Letter: You can't go your own way

THE ARTICLE by Julia Sinclair is a sad tale of poorly managed terminal care, but it contributes nothing to any argument for euthanasia. The fact that we feel helpless in the face of impending death is not sufficient reason to kill the patient. Living wills allow patients to state in advance the kind of treatments they do not want, but they do not allow us to demand that health-care staff take someone's life. From Ms Sinclair's description it sounds as if the poor young locum doctor finally gave her father an adequate dose of analgesia, but it was clearly not a lethal injection in the sense demanded by supporters of euthanasia. Following a lethal injection the patient does not regain consciousness next morning and smile at his loved ones.

Words: aboulia, n.

OUTSIDE THE changing-rooms at the London Library, the 18th-century scholar Keith Walker replied to my enquiry after his health, "I'm suffering from aboulia today."

Letter: Patients' rights

Sir: Jeremy Laurance's report (16 November) on Rodney Ledward's surgical record must have sent a chill down the spine of any woman who has ever consulted a gynaecologist. Elsewhere in the report was another chilling aspect: Brenda Johnson, after suffering an unnecessary and incompetent hysterectomy by Mr Ledward, begged her GP to refer her to another specialist. He refused, saying it was "unethical".

Letter: Transfusion errors

Transfusion errors

Back experts only of 'marginal benefit'

CHIROPRACTIC, one of the best established alternative treatments for back pain, is of marginal benefit and it is probably not worth the cost, according to a new study.

Letter: Surgical chore

Sir: Circumcision would appear to be pointless.

Treatment for ME costing pounds 1bn a year

CHRONIC FATIGUE syndrome is costing the country at least pounds 1bn a year in medical costs for sufferers, welfare benefits and other payments yet little is being done to treat it, according to a report.
The surrealist comedian at the Q Awards in 2010
Russell Brand arriving for the book launch in East London
peopleRussell Brand cancels his book launch debate due to concerns about the make-up of the panel
Christiano Ronaldo enjoys his opening goal
champions leagueLiverpool 0 Real Madrid 3: Ronaldo and Benzema run Reds ragged to avenge thrashing from their last visit to Anfield
Arts and Entertainment
Awesome foursome: Sam Smith shows off his awards
music22-year-old confirms he is 2014’s breakout British music success
Life and Style
Six of the 76 Goats' cheese samples contained a significant amount of sheep's cheese
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
Contestants during this summer's Celebrity Big Brother grand finale
tvBroadcaster attempts to change its image following sale to American media group
Arts and Entertainment
Sir Nicholas Serota has been a feature in the Power 100 top ten since its 2002 launch
Arts and Entertainment
Sarah Dales attempts to sell British Breeze in the luxury scent task
tvReview: 'Apprentice' candidate on the verge of tears as they were ejected from the boardroom
Call me Superman: one of many unusual names chosen by Chinese students
newsChinese state TV offers advice for citizens picking a Western moniker
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Independent Travel
Vietnam & Cambodia
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
India & Nepal
Berlin, Dresden, Meissen & Colditz
Prices correct as of 17 October 2014
How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker
Renée Zellweger's real crime has been to age in an industry that prizes women's youth over humanity

'Renée Zellweger's real crime was to age'

The actress's altered appearance raised eyebrows at Elle's Women in Hollywood awards on Monday
From Cinderella to The Jungle Book, Disney plans live-action remakes of animated classics

Disney plans live-action remakes of animated classics

From Cinderella to The Jungle Book, Patrick Grafton-Green wonders if they can ever recapture the old magic
Thousands of teenagers to visit battlefields of the First World War in new Government scheme

Pupils to visit First World War battlefields

A new Government scheme aims to bring the the horrors of the conflict to life over the next five years
The 10 best smartphone accessories

Make the most of your mobile: 10 best smartphone accessories

Try these add-ons for everything from secret charging to making sure you never lose your keys again
Mario Balotelli substituted at half-time against Real Madrid: Was this shirt swapping the real reason?

Liverpool v Real Madrid

Mario Balotelli substituted at half-time. Was shirt swapping the real reason?
West Indies tour of India: Hurricane set to sweep Windies into the shadows

Hurricane set to sweep Windies into the shadows

Decision to pull out of India tour leaves the WICB fighting for its existence with an off-field storm building
Indiana serial killer? Man arrested for murdering teenage prostitute confesses to six other murders - and police fear there could be many more

A new American serial killer?

Police fear man arrested for murder of teen prostitute could be responsible for killing spree dating back 20 years
Sweetie, the fake 10-year-old girl designed to catch online predators, claims her first scalp

Sting to trap paedophiles may not carry weight in UK courts

Computer image of ‘Sweetie’ represented entrapment, experts say
Fukushima nuclear crisis: Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on - and may never return home

Return to Fukushima – a land they will never call home again

Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on from nuclear disaster
Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize
Online petitions: Sign here to change the world

Want to change the world? Just sign here

The proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?