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You are here : 3-RX.com > Home > Psychiatry / Psychology


Massage May Help Dementia Patients With Agitation

Psychiatry / PsychologyOct 30 06

Massage could offer a drug-free way to treat agitation and depression among dementia patients, but there are still too few studies about the practice to know for sure, according to a review of recent research.

In two studies, hand massage and gentle touching during conversation helped ease agitation and restore appetite in dementia patients over short periods of about an hour.

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Oral contraceptives increase risk for breast cancer in some women

Breast CancerOct 30 06

A meta-analysis published in the October issue of Mayo Clinic Proceedings indicts oral contraceptives as putting premenopausal women at significantly increased risk for breast cancer, especially women who use them prior to having a child.

The meta-analysis builds on many studies with similar findings. But even as the findings stack up, many women are unaware of the risks posed by oral contraceptive use prior to pregnancy, says lead study author Chris Kahlenborn, M.D., of Altoona Hospital in Altoona, Pa.

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Stigma, discrimination in India hindering HIV/AIDS treatment, care

AIDS/HIVOct 30 06

The stigma and discrimination associated with HIV/AIDS in India is delaying treatment and care for HIV-positive people, according to a study conducted by the Population Council’s Horizons program; Sharan, an Indian nongovernmental organization; and the New Delhi-based Institute of Economic Growth, IRIN/Kenya London News reports.

The study, titled “Reducing AIDS-Related Stigma and Discrimination in Indian Hospitals,” includes interviews with hospital administrators, physicians, nurses and HIV-positive people and their caregivers at two state-owned hospitals and one private hospital in New Delhi from 2002 through 2004.

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Sequencing of chemotherapy and radiation therapy for early breast cancer

Breast CancerOct 30 06

For women who have had surgery for early breast cancer, it may not matter whether they receive follow-up chemotherapy before, after or during radiation therapy, according to a new review of studies.

A woman’s chances of survival or seeing the cancer return are similar in all three cases, if radiation therapy and chemotherapy begin within seven months after surgery, the review concludes.

However, the studies suggest that certain toxic side effects in the blood and esophagus—common in chemotherapy and radiation patients—may be up to 44 percent more likely when the two therapies are delivered at the same time, said Dr. Brigid Hickey and colleagues at the Southern Zone Radiation Oncology Service in Brisbane, Australia.

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Fathers influence child language

Children's HealthOct 30 06

In families with two working parents, fathers had greater impact than mothers on their children’s language development between ages 2 and 3, according to a study by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Frank Porter Graham (FPG) Child Development Institute and UNC’s School of Education.

Researchers videotaped pairs of parents and their 2-year-old children in their homes during playtime. The children whose fathers used more diverse vocabularies had greater language development when they were tested one year later. However, the mothers’ vocabulary did not significantly affect a child’s language skills.

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HIV/AIDS and poverty in Zambia threatens economic growth

AIDS/HIVOct 30 06

HIV/AIDS and poverty in Zambia “are threatening” economic growth the country has achieved since gaining its independence in 1964, President Levy Mwanawasa said last week in a speech on the eve of Zambia’s 42nd anniversary of independence, Reuters reports.

According to official statistics, one in five of the country’s 11.5 million residents is HIV-positive, and 65% of the population lives on less than $1 per day.

“We must be aware that the (AIDS) pandemic is capable of reversing all the gains we have made since independence,” Mwanawasa, who was re-elected earlier in the month for a second term, said.

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Staph vaccine shows promise in mouse study

InfectionsOct 30 06

By combining four proteins of Staphylococcus aureus that individually generated the strongest immune response in mice, scientists have created a vaccine that significantly protects the animals from diverse strains of the bacterium that cause disease in humans. A report describing the University of Chicago study, funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) of the National Institutes of Health, appears online this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

“This finding represents a promising step toward identifying potential components to combine into a vaccine designed for people at high risk of invasive S. aureus infection,” notes Anthony S. Fauci, M.D., NIAID director.

S. aureus, the most common agent of hospital-acquired infection, is the leading cause of bloodstream, lower respiratory tract and skin infections. These infections can result in a variety of illnesses, including endocarditis (inflammation of the heart), toxic-shock syndrome and food poisoning.

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Antipsychotic deemed effective for anxiety disorder

Psychiatry / PsychologyOct 28 06

The anti-psychotic drug trifluoperazine is well-tolerated and superior to inactive “placebo” in the short-term treatment of generalized anxiety disorder, a chronic disorder associated with exaggerated worry and tension, according to a study in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry. However, the value of other antipsychotics for treating anxiety is less clear because of the lack of large, well-designed studies.

Dr. Keming Gao, of University Hospitals of Cleveland/Case Western Reserve University, Ohio, and colleagues conducted a review to examine the benefits of antipsychotic drugs for anxiety disorders. The researchers also reviewed studies on bipolar disorder or major depressive disorder that included data regarding changes in anxiety.

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Depression impairs asthma-related quality of life

DepressionOct 28 06

Depression and anxiety disorders are both associated with worse quality of life because of asthma, but only depressive disorders are associated with worse asthma control, the results of a study in the journal Chest indicate.

Dr. Kim L. Lavoie, of the University of Quebec at Montreal, Canada, and colleagues examined the relative impact of having a depressive disorder or an anxiety disorder in 504 adults with asthma.

The participants completed a psychiatric interview using the Primary Care Evaluation of Mental Disorders. The Asthma Control Questionnaire and the Asthma Quality of Life Questionnaire were also used. Standard lung function tests were performed in all subjects.

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Experimental drug might help treat bowel cancer

Bowel ProblemsOct 28 06

An experimental drug that is effective in reducing the size and number of pre-cancerous growths in mice could help treat or prevent bowel cancer in humans, scientists said on Friday.

Most cases of the cancer develop from polyps, extra tissue that grows on the wall of the bowel. Not all polyps are dangerous but about 5 to 10 percent develop into cancer.

Scientists at the British charity Cancer Research UK found that AZD2171, an experimental drug made by AstraZeneca, stopped polyps in mice from progressing to cancer by blocking their blood supply.

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Joined at the head, Canadian twins doing well

SurgeryOct 28 06

Twin girls, joined at the head, are doing well a day after their birth, but Canadian doctors said on Thursday it could be three or four months before they will know if they can be separated.

The British Columbia Women’s Hospital in Vancouver said it was not a foregone conclusion that a separation of the babies, named Krista and Tatiana, will be attempted even if medically possible as the family weighs decisions on their future.

Doctors said they do not know yet how much of their brains the babies share, but they said it was clear from the girls’ physical responses that their bodies interact closely.

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Allergies, bottles may misalign baby teeth

Dental HealthOct 28 06

Nasal allergies, bottle-feeding and thumb sucking may all contribute to certain types of tooth misalignments in young children, a study shows.

In a study of nearly 1,200 children between the ages of 4 and 5, Mexican researchers found that those who were bottle-fed, used pacifiers or sucked their thumb before the age of 1 were more likely to have a posterior crossbite—where the upper teeth in the back of the mouth bite down behind, rather than in front of, the lower teeth.

Similarly, children with nasal allergies were more likely to develop an open bite, in which the top and bottom teeth in the front of the mouth do not connect when the jaw closes.

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Combo of exercise and nicotine therapy ensures smokers quit

Tobacco & MarijuanaOct 26 06

Researchers in Austria have found a way for people to quit smoking.

They say using a combination of either nicotine gum or transdermal patches and exercise makes it more likely that smokers will quit.

The combo they say offers a better chance of smokers kicking the habit and even those who failed to quit completely managed to cut down on the number of cigarettes they smoked.

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Glaxo says more govts will buy bird flu vaccine

FluOct 26 06

GlaxoSmithKline Plc expects to sign more contracts to supply governments with its experimental bird flu vaccine for humans, following purchases by Switzerland and an unidentified Asian country.

“Between now and Christmas, I expect we will sign a few more in Europe and elsewhere,” Chief Executive Jean-Pierre Garnier told analysts in a post-results conference call.

Europe’s biggest drugmaker announced earlier this month that the Swiss Federal Office of Public Health had ordered 8 million doses of its H5N1 vaccine to protect its entire population in the event of an influenza pandemic, which many experts fear may be triggered by bird flu.

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Twins prone to early menopause

Fertility and pregnancyOct 26 06

The prevalence of early menopause, also known as premature ovarian failure, among identical and fraternal twins is triple that of women in the general population, according to analysis of twin registries in Australia and the UK.

After hearing anecdotal reports about twin pairs having a higher than average rate of premature ovarian failure, Dr. Roger G. Gosden and his associates obtained data for 428 female twin-pairs in the Australian Twin Registry and 404 pairs in the UK Twin Registry.

Roughly half of the twin pairs were identical twins, who share the same DNA, and the other half were fraternal twins, who are as close genetically as other sisters.

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