Tuesday, May 5, 2009
For Eczema, a Simple Solution
Relief may be as close as the laundry room for kids who suffer from the painful and itchy skin condition known as atopic dermatitis, or eczema.
In a small study, researchers at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine have found that the best treatment for the chronic condition, which affects an estimated 17 percent of school-age kids, may be as simple as mixing a small amount of bleach in the bath water.
If anybody out there tries this, I'd love to hear how it works.
-- Jennifer Huget
Unbelievable! I have some itchy bumps on my back and along my jaw line. I've had them for about 10 years, and the dermatologists say they are itchy red bumps. It's frustrating. I took a small solution of water and bleach and rubbed it on my jaw line for the past three days. I'm almost cured! I mean, it is unreal how well this has worked. I have tried everything. It's not eczema that I have, but it still worked! Thanks so much!
PSA Testing Gets a Boost
The American Urological Association is breaking with other leading medical experts and continuing to recommend prostate -specific antigen testing for prostate cancer. Not only that, the group is actually lowering the age at which it recommends men start getting the test, from 50 to 40.
PSA testing has become one of the most controversial issues in health. Many men routinely undergo the blood test to try to spot prostate cancer early. There's no question the screening can do that, but many doctors have begun to challenge routine PSA testing because it often leads to unnecessary biopsies and treatment for a cancer that may never be life-threatening. The key, the AUA guidelines say, is how the results are used.
-- Rob Stein
I would be dead now if I had not had my PSA tested 14 years ago. My prostate cancer was aggressive. Every male should be regularly tested.
Are You Prepared for Swine Flu?
How is swine flu affecting your life? What preparations have you made for a possible outbreak?
-- Justin Jouvenal
I have stocked up with canned goods, toilet paper, ordered a case of masks and gloves and sanitizers. I'm ready for six months-plus. If you read about 1918, you will do the same.
Stay home or telecommute if you feel icky. Call your doctor if it gets worse. Wash your hands. A little common sense would go far right now.
I'm preparing by ignoring the hysteria. The media have been waiting breathlessly for a while to call something a "pandemic." It's ridiculous.
Running With Cancer
Three local women took a run through New York's Central Park on April 26 as participants in the sixth annual More magazine half-marathon, the largest women-only 13-miler in the country.
Big deal, you say? Well, for Michele Conley, Betty Lawson and Marlyn Glickman, it's a very big deal indeed. All three are cancer survivors, and running (or walking) this race is part of their commitment to reclaiming their lives through nutrition and physical activity.
Readers, let's hear your stories. Has ramping up your physical activity and improving your diet helped you contend with serious illness?
-- Jennifer Huget
I'm a year out of treatment, and I can't ramp up my physical activity because my back hurts. Now, I may have "40-year-old back," but as soon as you say "I hurt" to an oncologist, you are treated to a round of testing. I'd like to be more physically active, though.
Three cheers for the women who are battling cancer in a positive way.
In November 2005, two weeks after I finished my fifth Marine Corps Marathon, I was told I was anemic. It was quite a shock when a colonoscopy in January 2006 revealed that I had stage 3B colon cancer. The operation followed two weeks later. Quite a way to start my 65th year.
I had already registered for the 2006 MCM, and I told anyone who would listen that I was going to run. I changed my diet, worked out every day, ran one race a month and, six weeks after completing my chemo treatments, I ran my best MCM.
I think that keeping a positive attitude, setting goals and relying on the support of my family and the oncology staff helped me battle my cancer.