All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS)


All India Institute of Medical Sciences was established by an Act of Parliament of 1956, as an autonomous institution of national importance and its objectives and functions were defined. By virtue of this Act, the institute awards its own medical degrees, diplomas and other academic distinctions. The degrees and diplomas awarded by the institute under the All India institute of Medical Sciences Act are recognized medical qualifications for the purpose of the Indian Medical Council Act, are deemed to be included in the first schedule of that act entitling the holders to the same privileges as those attached to the equivalent awards from other universities of India.

The Institute is a residential university in which the faculty members, staff and the students live on campus. There are 8 hostels for undergraduate students (6 for boys and 2 for girls) with a capacity to accommodate 850 students. There are separate hostels for the postgraduate students. The hospital has 1560 beds including the beds in Paying wards.

All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS)

The prime concern of the Institute is to develop patterns of teaching in undergraduate and postgraduate medical education in all the branches so as to demonstrate a high standard of medical education to all medical colleges and allied institutions in India. The other important objectives of the Institute are to bring together in one place educational facilities of the highest order for the training of personnel in all the important branches of health activities and to attain self-sufficiency in postgraduate medical education. The educational principles and practices being adopted here are those which are the best suited to the needs of the country. Adaptation of education to meet the problems of community health is a major preoccupation. To this effect the Institute has been trying to initiate a model educational program which is undertaken in the Ballabgarh Community Development Block in collaboration with the Haryana Government. The Institute has also been able been able to initiate model educational programme in Community Medicine at the urban field practice area in Malviya Nagar, New Delhi. Emphasis is laid on the active learning process and on the cultivation of scholarly habits and scientific methods.

The first batch of undergraduate medical students was admitted to the Institute in the year 1956 and since then the Institute has been admitting 50 students every year to the M.B.B.S. Course. The number of students to this course is kept relatively small to ensure an adequate teacher student ratio. The undergraduate curriculum is constantly the subject for discussion at the faculty and Staff Council levels and required changes in the curriculum are brought about, off and on in order to evolve a pattern which is the most suitable for the Indian needs and conditions.

The undergraduate medical students get sufficient impetus for higher studies as the institute provides facilities for postgraduate degrees in almost all the branches of medical sciences. At present, the Institute is awarding post-graduate degrees in about 45 different specialization.

Rohit Mehra is webmaster of [] – All India Institute of Medical Sciences which is a leading online education portal provides a platform where students or medical aspirants can have online tutorials for competitive exams like AIIMS, AIMPT, AFMC etc. The portal intends to provide an elite expert panel, comprising Medical students, graduates and medical coaching professional who have a common passion for medical Entrance exams in particular and science in general. The panel will provide online guidance to students appearing for the AIIMS [] exam. The biggest asset of the venture is that it is free, no subscription cost either! This comes as a huge-advantage to the student community who has been craving for personalized help, but could not afford it due to costs or demographics. It also breaks all geographic barriers to bring together some of the best brains in the industry to help nurture the next generation.

Synergistic Medical Science – The Future of Health Care

Welcome to the final article in this seven part series on Ayurvedic Medicine and the natural botanicals used in this ancient medical science that is becoming increasingly popular in the West. The prior articles have individually focused on the medicinal treatments, such as Turmeric, Ginger, Guggul and Amalaki, and their capacity to treat and prevent diseases. As promised in a past article, I will now devote this final one to a major precept of Ayurveda that may seem foreign to those in the United States who are educated in or treated by Western (Allopathic) Medicine. This precept of Ayurveda is medical synergy.

Before I get into this concept as it applies to medicine, think about this question. You go to your doctor due to an illness of some sort and are hopeful for a treatment, perhaps a cure, which usually comes in the form of a medication. How many of us go to the doctor when we are healthy as a method of preventing illness? Yes, there are guidelines for screening for Cervical, Breast, Colon and Prostate Cancers at varying ages. Yes, there are recommendations for yearly physicals as well. However, these visits are to check for symptoms or signs, to ensure there is nothing wrong. They are generally not focused on how to do things right from a healthy perspective.

Secondly, as we all know from the numerous advertisements, medications have side effects some of which are life-threatening, though most people get lesser ones instead of major ones. This brings me to my second question. When you report such side effects to your doctor, and you should always do this, what is the next step in treatment? The options are few and in my field of Pediatric mental health, like many others in western medicine, a popular option is to give another medication to treat the side effects of the first. This can be effective of course, yet as a physician I am concerned about how the combination of medications may interact. Another common option is to prescribe a second medication to combat the disease itself. However, there is often a scarcity of clinical research studies that support multiple simultaneous medications for treating an illness.

Now, imagine a scientific medical approach that was based upon not only prevention and maintaining a health body and mind, but additionally on combining treatments so that together each of them enhances their individual benefits. This is the concept of synergy and one that has been embraced, researched and employed in Ayurveda for hundreds of years. It is actually standard practice in Ayurveda to treat patients with synergistic natural treatments, such as combining Turmeric with Ginger in order to potentiate their effects. Synergy is a standard in Ayurvedic Medicine and is just one reason western culture is incorporating the tenets of Ayurveda into daily living.

Western medicine has made truly remarkable advances in medical technology and treatment that have allowed people to live longer, healthier lives. Our country is undergoing a medical revolution at this time that will change the way doctors practice and patients are treated. From this revolution will evolve a medical system that combines the wisdom of Eastern Medicine with the advancements in the West, thereby creating a balanced medical approach focusing on prevention. In the future, the terms Eastern, or Ayurvedic Medicine, and Western, or Allopathic Medicine will cease to exist. The new global medical system may be termed Integrative or Holistic Medicine, terms that are familiar today, or perhaps a new name will be given, such as Synergistic Medicine. Whatever we call it, it will undoubtedly contain some of the major concepts covered in this series on Ayurveda, such as adaptogenic medicines that modulate the body’s response to stress. As we in western medicine are now discovering, there is much to gain by studying a medical science that has prospered for millennia and continues to evolve.

To further your knowledge in eastern medicine, or Ayurveda in particular, search this term on the internet and you will find a wealth of resources and practitioners, many of them closer to you than you think. I welcome you to follow the link below as an additional resource.

Cholesterol Essential for Great Health, and Is Not the Mythical Boogy-Man

The Hypothesis
Let us say that an inspector witnessed many large fires and noticed that at every fire, firemen were present, and therefore concluded that just on the weight of their presence, firemen were the cause of fires. This specious logic seems to be the thinking of the mainstream medical community when it arrives at the conclusion that the mere presence of cholesterol in arteries as plaque is the cause of heart disease, stroke and arteriolosclerosis—this has been the prevailing wisdom.

The American Heart Association’s website states, “High cholesterol is one of the major controllable risk factors for coronary heart disease, heart attack and stroke.” And, “High blood cholesterol: As blood cholesterol rises, so does risk of coronary heart disease.” This is called the lipid hypothesis, where the only accepted therapy for heart disease was prescribing medications to lower cholesterol and severely restrict the ingestion of saturated fat, and any deviation from this protocol for several decades now, has been considered heresy.

Doubts Abound
Apparently humans have consumed large amounts of saturated fats for centuries in the form of meat, eggs and full-fat diary without the incidence of heart disease… up until about the 1900′s. As we reduced these foods in our diets replacing them with loads of sugar, vegetable oils and processed foods, heart disease made its debut with a vengeance and became the number one killer in America.

Large companies are not nefarious entities, yet it would be prudent to be cognizant of the fact that pharmaceutical and processed-food companies bring in mega-dollars as long as this hypothesis is alive and kicking; reminding me of what Sydney J. Harris wrote “There is no way of proving your point to someone whose income or position depends upon believing the contrary.”

Here are some interesting facts:
-Cholesterol levels in Briton are the 15th lowest among 45 countries in Europe, yet they still have one of the highest rates of heart attacks.
-75% of heart attack victims have normal cholesterol
-Countries with higher than average cholesterol levels than America like the Swiss, French and Spanish have less heart disease.

Role of Cholesterol
I was quite surprised to learn recently that cholesterol is crucial to glowing health. Wow, who would ever think that, with the way we’ve been conditioned for decades to think otherwise.

First of all, cholesterol is an essential component in our cell membranes, and acts as an anti-oxidant where every cell in our body has the ability to manufacture it, manufacturing more or less of it based on how much of it we consume. These are some of the functions of cholesterol contributing to health:

-Enzymes convert it into vitamin D, bile salts for digesting and absorbing fats.
-Enzymes convert it into steroidal hormones like testosterone, estrogen and progesterone.
-One quarter of all cholesterol in the body is in the brain essential for synaptic health.
-The membranes surrounding cells and its structure are mostly made of cholesterol helping to maintain cell integrity and communication.
-One-fifth of the myelin sheath coating every nerve cell and fiber is made of cholesterol.
-It contributes to your immune system able to inactivate more tha 90% of the worst and most toxic bacterial products.

New Hypothesis
Cholesterol performs thousands of bodily functions, a crucial component for life, and many in the medical community have become aware it has suffered a bad rap as the cause of heart disease and stroke. A few years ago it was discovered that the real cause of these diseases is something called inflammation in the artery wall. What causes arterial inflammation? It is your body’s natural defense to a foreign invader such as a bacteria, toxin or virus, and, that cholesterol being the good guy, comes to the rescue as the fireman to put out the fire by forming a scab known as plaque over the area of inflammation.

Dr. Malcolm Kendrick, author of The Great Cholesterol Scam, says, “Essentially cholesterol is there to help repair damage.” Cholesterol is present, but it’s not the perpetrator. Dr. Kendrick also saw that the MONICA study ongoing now for forty-years, shows no association with high cholesterol and heart disease.

Dr. Uffe Ravnskov, author of The Cholesterol Myths, goes through study after study destroying the myth that high cholesterol levels are the cause of heart disease. And, a Canadian study followed 5,000 healthy middle-aged men for twelve-years, and found high cholesterol did not at all contribute to heart disease. Another study from the University Hospital in Toronto looking at cholesterol levels in 120 men that previously had heart attacks, found that just as many men having second heart attacks had low cholesterol levels as those that had high.

This new prevailing wisdom seems to be saying in no uncertain terms, that if inflammation isn’t present in the arterial walls, cholesterol levels are irrelevant, and that eating saturated fats like steak, eggs and diary bear no threat to health… and the science that says it does is very weak. Now that it’s known cholesterol is not the cause of heart disease, the concern with saturated fat is, as one doctor put it, “even more absurd today.”

There has been extensive pharmaceutical marketing of statins to both doctors and patients to the tune of $28 billion a year. In 2004 the National Cholesterol Education Program expanded guidelines by recommending that people who don’t suffer from heart disease should take statins to prevent heart disease, increasing the number of people taking them from 13 million to 40 million.

Eight of the nine people on the panel had financial ties to the drug industry. Without side effects from these drugs, it may be justifiable to take the risk, but they’re known to cause muscle damage, sexual dysfunction, and liver and nerve damage among other problems in 10 to 15% of those patients.

If no inflammation is present, despite if your cholesterol count is high, taking statins has zero benefit-statins should only be used for inflammation reduction, and the test to monitor inflammation is called C-reactive protein.

The Main Culprits of Inflammation
Dr. Stephen Sinatra is a convert from a pro-statin, anti-cholesterol, paid consultant of statin drug manufacturers to being a cholesterol skeptic, and is the author of, The Great Cholesterol Myth. He says, “I was doing angiograms on people with [cholesterol levels of] 150 who had far advanced heart disease, and the converse, I was doing angiograms on somebody with cholesterol of 280 and they had no heart disease.” The main culprit he identifies is small dense LDL particles, making your typical total LDL number count meaningless. This is the only lipid you need be concerned about, and there is a test for it known as the particle test. In an interview with Dr. Oz, he explains the process in this three-minute video: Dr. Oz and Dr. Sinatra interview.

Another culprit is sugar, especially high fructose corn syrup. Inflammation is caused when extra sugar molecules attach to some proteins that in turn injure the blood vessel wall, and repeated injury to the wall sets off inflammation. Heart surgeon Dr. Dwight Lundell who has performed over 5,000 open heart surgeries and has looked into at least as many arteries, now is a vehement convert to inflammation being the cause of heart disease. He states,dr. Lundell “When you spike your blood sugar level several times a day, every day, it is exactly like taking sandpaper to the inside of your delicate blood vessels.”

A third main culprit is omega-6 oils. While they are essential and part of every cell membrane, they must be in balance with omega-3 oils. Dr. Lundell goes on to say, “If the balance shifts by consuming excessive omega-6, the cell membrane produces chemicals called cytokines that directly cause inflammation. Today’s mainstream American diet has produced an extreme imbalance of these two fats. The ratio of imbalance ranges from 15:1 to as high as 30:1 in favor of omega-6. That’s a tremendous amount of cytokines causing inflammation. In today’s food environment, a 3:1 ratio would be optimal and healthy.”
Some of the foods containing high amounts of omega-6 are corn oil, canola oil, soy oil, hydrogenated fats, margarine and shortening. One infamous example that holds a ton of this fat is French fries, of which we consume about 28 pounds each year per capita. Foods loaded with sugars and omega-6 oils for long shelf-life have been the mainstay of our diet for six decades, and are slowly poisoning us. The lipid hypothesis led to the no-fat, low-fat recommendations that created the foods now causing an epidemic of inflammation.

While all of this may seem confusing at first, we need remember only a few things. As Dr. Lundell writes, “Without inflammation being present in the body, there is no way that cholesterol would accumulate in the wall of the blood vessel and cause heart disease and strokes. Without inflammation, cholesterol would move freely throughout the body as nature intended. It is inflammation that causes cholesterol to become trapped.”

Inflammation is the bad guy. Stay away from sugar and omega-6. And, the two tests to help us monitor inflammation are C-reactive protein and the particle test. This new hypothesis recommends using statins only as a mechanism to alleviate inflammation, not just to lower cholesterol levels-used specifically for the purpose of interfering with cholesterol levels may be detrimental to health. Also, statins aren’t the only game in town to mitigate inflammation, diet modification and other life style changes such as exercise are also effective.