No matter how fast medicine moves us towards treatments, preventive medicine will always be the most effective and cheapest way to keep healthy. Yesterday, we went over the most common screenings for women. Today we’ll look at men’s health screenings, when you should get them, and what kind of experience you’re in for.
To defeat the deadliest of cancers, it’s time to unleash the viruses.
In a small clinical trial with brain cancer patients, a tumor-seeking virus successfully invaded cancer cells and smuggled in molecular detonators, allowing doctors to selectively blast the deadly growths with a toxic drug. In the trial’s 45 participants, who were fighting the most aggressive forms of brain cancer known, the virus-drug combo nearly doubled their average survival time while showing no dangerous side effects. The finding, published Wednesday in the journal Science Translational Medicine, demonstrates the utility of such viruses and also provides a green light for the treatment strategy to move on to more trials.
In 1951 essayist Norman Cousins wrote: “The hand that is dealt you represents determinism. The way you play your hand represents free will.” He was writing about the nature of man, but it’s not unreasonable to extrapolate his thoughts to the part that our genes play in our health.
The genetic material we inherit from our parents may be a blueprint, an instruction book used to build our body and to keep it running, but – for most of us – it doesn’t determine our fate completely.
We often see the doctors as the faces of healthcare, but we forgot that there are others that work just as hard to make sure the patient goes home better than they came in. Nurses, lab folk, and techs.
That said, at the end of the day – people are fallible.
A Boston man who lost most of his penis in a fight with cancer has become the first US patient to receive a penis transplant.
Thomas Manning, 64, a bank courier from Halifax, Massachusetts, received the new organ from a deceased donor in a 15 hour-long operation conducted at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston on May 8 and 9. The procedure involves doctors hooking up nerves, veins, and arteries between the recipient and donor organ. So far, Manning’s doctors are “cautiously optimistic” that he will recover urinary and sexual function in the coming weeks and months.
Cancer cells have a terrifying-yet-ingenious way of passing through even the smallest blood vessels to spread throughout the human body, according to a new study by researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital. Figuring out how to prevent them from doing so may help slow down the spread of this killer disease.
They are circulating tumor cells xenografted into a fish embryo. We don’t really know much about ciruculating tumor cells (CTC’s) except that some early studies have shown that if they can be found, the risk of recurrence is higher. We haven’t yet found a way to impact those findings so the recommendation is to not even look for them. Finding them does not change therapy, and finding them does not guarantee relapse although the companies that make the assay try to sell it on “don’t you want to know?” In fact, no. I do not want to know a number that may scare people, may not lead to bad outcomes even though it sounds like it does, and has no bearing on actual treatment decisions.
That said, this begs the question of why these cells are capable of the behavior… How do they attain this ability?
An international panel of doctors has decided that a type of tumor that was classified as a cancer is not a cancer at all.
As a result, they have officially downgraded the condition, and thousands of patients will be spared removal of their thyroid, treatment with radioactive iodine and regular checkups for the rest of their lives, all to protect against a tumor that was never a threat.
Performing any kind of surgery on the brain is already a tremendously difficult procedure, but removing only cancerous tissue is even more of a challenge because it’s very difficult to visually distinguish the good brain from the bad. But what if the scalpel in a surgeon’s hand could tell the difference between the two?
Planting your behind in a seat for hours at a time has been squarely linked to an increase in health problems, from shorter lifespans to a slew of diseases, including cancer. Concerned office workers have leapt to standing desks as healthier alternatives. But prolonged sitting may be getting a bum rap, a new study suggests.
The moral of the story is still this: go out and get some exercise.
No gym membership needed. Go out and run. Or walk at first if you can’t run. Or try cycling. Or try rowing. Or swimming. Can’t swim? Even better- you’ll go on a great journey just learning how to swim crawl correctly.
What – winters are bad where you live? Cross country skiing. Endurance exercise has the power to change your life.