August 2006

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Drug companies spend billions of dollars on TV commercials that are supposed to entice viewers to beg their doctors for the latest and greatest prescription medicine. But you have to wonder why anyone would want to take pills that can... (Read More)
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Q. I am highly susceptible to mosquito bites and often get a dozen bites in the same time frame that others get one. I have tried many remedies to prevent the bites, like natural insect repellants and Vitamin B. I... (Read More)
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Q. Some years ago, my mother had surgery and had a very bad reaction to the sedative Versed. The surgeon said she must never get Versed again. A few years later, she was scheduled for another surgery. There was a... (Read More)

600 The Music Effect

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Music plays an important role in the healing rituals of many cultures. But does it have any place in modern medical care? Music has an impact on human physiology, which may be why it is so powerful at affecting our... (Read More)
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This week: Nicotine may help control acne FDA approval of Plan B emergency contraception Allergies on the rise in children Vitamin D and the elderly Drinking tea for health Quality standards for valerian Calcium in mineral water Preventing gout Aspirin... (Read More)
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Drug companies are eating doughnuts while millions of senior citizens are left with the doughnut hole. Medicare Part D was supposed to benefit older Americans but it has turned out to be a windfall for the pharmaceutical industry. For years... (Read More)
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Q. I’ve had good luck getting rid of warts with minced garlic. Apply it directly to the wart and cover it with a bandage. Change the garlic and the bandage at least once a day. The wart should be peeled... (Read More)
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Q. Now that Mel Gibson’s alcohol problem is out in the open, perhaps there will be more discussion about treating alcoholism. Why don’t rehab centers use naltrexone or acamprosate for this disease? One of my family members is being treated... (Read More)
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Chronic pain affects millions of Americans. Migraine sufferers, arthritis victims, people with bad backs and those with cancer pain all have to cope with pain over the course of many months or years. Doctors often feel helpless in the battle... (Read More)
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This week: Nicotine may help control acne Stopping overuse of pain relievers can make migraines back off Vitamin D is essential for healthy lung function Fish oil supplements help lung function Magnesium associated with stronger muscles in elderly Mineral water... (Read More)
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Q. I just read your column on plantar warts. My doctor suggested I use fingernail polish, covering the wart twice a day for three weeks. I believe the wart died within 10 days of doing that treatment. It was easy... (Read More)
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Q. As a person who is both a cat lover and who has eczema and asthma, I was concerned to read the question from a grandmother worried about a cat causing her granddaughter eczema. I fear some people will use... (Read More)
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Physicians are admonished never to let the cure be worse than the disease. And yet far too often the very medicines meant to soothe symptoms or overcome illness cause more harm than good. The Institute of Medicine (IOM) offers objective... (Read More)

599 Health News Update

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DEA (diethanolamine) is an ingredient found in many shampoos, sunscreens and other cosmetics. When it is applied to the skin of pregnant mice it affects the brains of developing embryos. What should humans do about this information? Many people take... (Read More)
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This week: Adolescents and children taking SSRI antidepressants are more vulnerable to suicide Injecting the anesthetic ketamine can improve major depression within hours Intrauterine ultrasound may affect brain development Para-dichlorobenzene hurts lung capacity FDA may approve OTC status for Plan... (Read More)
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Two years ago we got a desperate phone call from a friend. He was afraid his wife had suffered a stroke. She was in a coma, unresponsive and he feared he would soon be forced to decide whether to discontinue... (Read More)
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Q. Some of the people in my multiple sclerosis support group use the gin and raisins remedy for achy muscles and joints. Does the alcohol evaporate entirely? Would there be cause for worry if a person ate 15 or 20... (Read More)
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Q. For over 25 years I have been using Listerine full strength in a spray bottle for sunburn. An old fisherman told me about it when I got a severe sunburn from sitting in a boat on a lake and... (Read More)
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This week: The FDA may be close to over the counter approval for the morning after pill. Study shows possible link between NSAIDs and risk of heart attack. Scorpion venom may help to treat brain tumors. Processed meats may increase... (Read More)

598 Female Sexuality

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Testosterone has made headlines lately in the sports news, with Tour de France winner Floyd Landis and sprinter Justin Gatlin accused of boosting their performance with this male hormone. But doctors may be prescribing testosterone for women with an entirely... (Read More)