News on Health & Science

Prostate Cancer Cure Has Side-Effects

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One of the first large quality-of- life studies on today’s prostate cancer treatments suggests that for some men, it is a matter of picking your poison and facing potential sexual, urinary or other problems.

Of the choices studied – surgery, standard radiation, hormone therapy or radioactive seeds – the seeds seemed to carry a lower risk of several of these side-effects.

Hormone therapy – when combined with radiation – had a big effect on men’s vitality and sexuality. The radioactive pellets sometimes led to sexual problems too, but more often involved discomfort in urinating.

The research, published in New England Journal of Medicine , does not address the cure rates of different treatments. Moreover, not every treatment is an option for every man. For example, radioactive pellets are generally used only in men with early-stage cancer that is slow-growing.

Nor does the study speak to decisions about whether to treat at all a slow-growing form of cancer that can take 10 or 20 years to become life-threatening.

An 80-year-old man may choose to avoid all treatment and the assorted complications. But for a man of, say, 50, the study provides some insight into the side effects of different options, said Dr William Oh, a Harvard University prostate cancer specialist.

“We’ve just never had the data that put patients’ side-by-side like this before,” said Dr William Oh.

The researchers surveyed about 1,200 patients, as well as 625 wives who were enrolled at nine US hospitals from March 2003 to March 2006.

Telephone surveys were done before treatment began and at two, six, 12 and 24 months afterward.

Sources: The Times Of India

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Ailmemts & Remedies

Breast Pain

Breast pain is an extremely common problem. In most women, the pain is cyclical, varying in severity in response to the hormonal changes of the menstrual cycle. This cyclical pain is usually most severe before menstrual periods and tends to affect both breasts.

Breast pain (mastalgia) is a common type of discomfort among women  affecting 70 percent of women at some point in their lives.

Breast pain occurs more frequently in younger, premenopausal women, although women who are postmenopausal can experience breast pain, too. About one in 10 women experiences moderate to severe breast pain more than five days a month. In some cases, women have severe breast pain that lasts throughout their entire menstrual cycles. This can have a major impact on daily activities, such as work, family relations and sexual relationships.

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Breast pain alone rarely signifies breast cancer. Still, if you have unexplained breast pain that’s causing you to worry about breast cancer or otherwise disrupting your life, get checked by your doctor.

Cyclical breast pain affects as many as 1 in 2 women and is commonly a chronic problem. In some women, the pain is severe. Women who experience cyclical breast pain often also have generalized breast lumpiness, Which tends to become worse before a menstrual period. The pain may be aggravated by stress and by caffeine in certain drinks.

In some women, breast pain is not related to menstruation. muscle strain may result in noncyclical breast pain. rarely, pain is caused by a breast cyst or breast cancer. Breast pain may also be due to an acute problem, such as an infection that causes inflammation of the breast tissue or engorgement of the breast with milk after childbirth. sometimes, the cause of breast pain is not known. If you have large breasts, you are more likely to suffer from both cyclical and noncyclical breast pain.

What might the doctor do?
Your doctor will ask you about your breast pain to see if there is a pattern. He or she will examine your breasts to look for an underlying cause, such as a breast cyst or any tender areas in the surrounding muscles. If it is apparent from the consultation and examination that you do not have an underlying disorder, your doctor may ask you to keep a record of when you experience breast pain to help confirm that the pain is cyclical. If your doctor suspects that an underlying disorder may be causing the pain, he or she will probably arrange for mammography or ultrasound scanning in order to detect abnormalities in the breast.

Mild cyclical pain does not normally require treatment. however, in about 1 in 10 women, the pain is so severe that it can interfere with everyday life. Taking large doses of evening primrose oil has been reported to reduce the response of the breast tissue to female sex hormones. however, if this treatment is ineffective or the pain is severe, your doctor may prescribe danazol, a drug that reduces the effects of female sex hormones acting on the breast. Although this drug is effective in relieving pain, it may have side effects such as acne and weight gain. cyclical breast pain tends to ease after menopause. if you take hormone replacement therapy, the pain may continue after menopause, but it often improves after a few months.

If your breast pain is non- cyclical, the cause will be treated if necessary. Cysts are usually drained and antibiotics can be used to treat infection. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs may help relieve muscle pain.

What can be done?
Breast pain may be eased by wearing a bra that supports your breasts properly. If your breasts are heavy and the pain is severe, you may need to wear a bra at night. Cyclical pain may be relieved by cutting down on caffeine, practicing relaxation exercises to help control stress, and trying to lose weight to reduce the size of the breasts. Some women find that taking vitamin e supplements is also helpful, but this effect is not supported by scientific studies.

How the breast pain is normally treated?
There are different treatments for breast pain depending on what is causing it. You and your doctor can talk about these treatments and choose one or more that might work for you. Here are some possible treatments for breast pain:
*Wearing a support bra
*Taking an over-the-counter pain medicine
*Taking danazol (brand name: Danocrine) — for severe pain
Other treatments for breast pain are sometimes used. However, there is no proof that these treatments work:
*Avoiding caffeine
*Using less salt
*Taking vitamin E or vitamin B6
*Taking a “water-pill” (a diuretic)
*Most of the time, breast pain goes away on its own after a few months.

Click to learn more about Breast Pain

Recommended Ayurvedic Therapy: Vaman

Homeopathic remedy for breast pain………..(1).……(2)

How to Alleviate Breast Pain With Home Remedies

Herbal remedies for breast tenderness

Disclaimer: This information is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advise or help. It is always best to consult with a Physician about serious health concerns. This information is in no way intended to diagnose or prescribe remedies.This is purely for educational purpose.


Remedy of Common Incidences

How to Help a Depressed Loved One

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Don’t tell him to “snap out of it.” There are better ways to deal with depression.
The most important thing you can do for a family member or friend who is depressed is to help him or her get an appropriate diagnosis and treatment. This may involve encouraging him or her to stay with treatment until symptoms begin to abate (several weeks), or to seek different treatment if no improvement occurs. On occasion, it may require making an appointment and accompanying your loved one to the doctor. It may also mean monitoring whether he is taking medication. Encourage your friend to obey the doctor’s orders about the use of alcoholic products while on medication.

The second most important thing is to offer emotional support. This involves understanding, patience, affection, and encouragement. Engage the depressed person in conversation and listen carefully. Do not disparage feelings expressed, but point out realities and offer hope. Do not ignore remarks about suicide. Report them to your friend’s therapist. Invite your friend for walks, outings, to the movies, and other activities. Be gently insistent if your invitation is refused. Encourage participation in some activities that once gave the person pleasure, such as hobbies, sports, religious or cultural activities, but do not push him to undertake too much too soon. Your friend or family member needs diversion and company, but too many demands can increase feelings of failure.

Do not accuse your friend of faking illness or of laziness, or expect her “to snap out of it.” Eventually, with treatment, most people do get better. Keep that in mind, and keep reassuring her that, with time and help, she will feel better.

Where to Get Help:
If you’re unsure where to go for help, check the Yellow Pages under “mental health,” “health,” “social services,” “suicide prevention,” “crisis intervention services,” “hotlines,” “hospitals,” or “physicians” for phone numbers and addresses. You can also search the websites listed under “Related Links.” People and places that will make referrals to, or provide, diagnostic and treatment services include: family doctors, community mental health centers, hospital psychiatry departments and outpatient clinics, university- or medical school-affiliated programs, family service or social agencies, employee assistance programs, and local medical and/or psychiatric societies. In times of crisis, the emergency room doctor at a hospital may be able to provide temporary help for an emotional problem, and will be able to tell you where and how to get further help.

From: The National Institute of Mental Health

News on Health & Science

Researchers find key to treating insomnia

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: Researchers studying a disease that causes people to suddenly drop off to sleep are trying to turn what they have learnt into a new way to help insomniacs get some shut-eye… & see

They found that blocking brain receptors for orexin, a blood peptide, promoted sleep in rats, dogs and people, according to a paper in Sunday’s online issue of the journal Nature Medicine.

Orexin, also known as hypocretin, is important in maintaining wakefulness. It is absent in the brains of people who suffer from narcolepsy, a chronic disorder in which people cannot regulate sleep-wake cycles normally.

It is estimated to affect more than 135,000 people in the United States, according to the National Institutes of Health.

The research team, led by Francois Jenck of the Swiss drug company Actelion Pharmaceuticals, reasoned that they might be able to induce sleep if they could block orexin.

They developed a drug that can block the receptors in the brain that respond to orexin-hypocretin. The researchers reported successful testing in rodents, dogs and men.

The first tests were proof of the concept and the drug is now being evaluated to establish the correct dosage, said Roland Haefeli, an Actelion spokesman.

Researchers hope to decide this year whether to conduct a phase-three study, a detailed assessment of the drug that would be the final step before seeking US government approval for its use. Such studies can take a few years.

Narcolepsy victims often also experience cataplexy, a condition in which they lose control of muscle tone for a few seconds to minutes. Jenck said in a telephone interview that the drug tests did not prompt indications of cataplexy.

Thomas Scammell, an assistant professor of neurology at Harvard University, said the work was “promising, with a certain amount of caution”.

“I think it may be the beginning of something quite exciting,” said Scammell, who was not part of the research team.

Source:The Times Of India

News on Health & Science

Alternative Therapies Might Aid Fertility

Sandee Deppiesse and her husband, Scott, tried for three frustrating years to get pregnant. For their final desperate attempt, the couple tried acupuncture.

“My doctor gave me a 5 percent chance [of getting pregnant], given my age,” said Sandee, who is now 40. “And so I started looking, because I figured there had to be a way.”

“The longer things go, the more things you’re willing to try,” said Scott.

Sandee sought out San Francisco acupuncturist Angela Wu, who treated her with the ancient Chinese therapy.

“[Wu] just said, ‘I will get you pregnant. Don’t listen to those doctors,’ ” Sandee said.

More Western doctors are recommending acupuncture to couples with fertility problems. Dr. Vick Sahakian of UCLA believes it can reduce stress for women trying to get pregnant.

“It can improve pregnancy rates by improving blood flow to the uterus where the embryos are basically implanted,” he said.

A study by German researches found that women who used acupuncture while undergoing in-vitro fertilization increased their success rates by almost 50 percent. Sahakian said his own patients have expressed confidence in the procedure.

Tiffany Hecht is one of them. She was skeptical at first, but no longer.

“I can tell the difference from the last three in-vitros that I produced more eggs,” she said. “And to me, that is a huge sign that it is working.”

Mind-Body Program

Acupuncture is not the only alternative therapy available. A Harvard University mind-body fertility program is gaining popularity throughout the country.

The program encourages couples to share the feelings of frustration and shame associated with infertility.

“There is a lot of sadness that comes with it and a lot of pain and it’s really a lonely place to be,” said one woman in a support group.

The program also uses meditation and yoga techniques that help elicit a relaxation response to release hormones that aid reproduction.

“I think we try to control things and force them,” said psychologist Laurel Kline. “And you can’t force an egg and a sperm to get together and implant. I tell people that all the time. Part of it is you have to let go.”

The result, according to a Harvard study, is a 55 percent pregnancy rate for those who took the mind-body course.

Alternative therapies may still raise some eyebrows in the scientific community, but many of these couples say they have all the proof they need. The Depiesses say it worked for them — twice.

“I think I have two beautiful kids,” said Scott. “So yes, I believe.”

Sources: ABC News’ Judy Muller filed this report for World News