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Sunday, March 26, 2006

News Flash

Breast Cancer More Aggressive in Younger Women
Breast cancer is less common in younger women, but more aggressive in patients under the age of 45, according to research presented at the 5th European Breast Cancer Conference in Nice, France. Those diagnosed with early breast cancer also have a higher risk of dying from the disease, researchers say. They now suspect there may be some type of unknown genetic damage that may increase the chances of developing the disease early, and contribute to the poorer prognosis in younger patients.
Drug Resistant TB on the Rise
While the overall number of cases of tuberculosis in the U.S. fell to historic lows last year, public health authorities warn that there was a small but worrisome increase in the number of TB cases that are resistant to several drugs. The number of drug-resistant cases increased by 13% between 2003 and 2004, many of them in people who were born abroad. Health authorities are creating a new category, nicknamed XDR for extensively drug-resistant, for TB cases that not only are resistant to 2 first-line antibiotics, but at least 1 toxic second-line medication as well.
Not All Carbohydrates Are Bad
According to Elisa Zied, a dietician from the American Dietetic Association, carbohydrates are not the enemy. "Carbs provide the body with glucose which is the main fuel for the central nervous system, the brain. You don't want to eliminate or avoid it," said Zied. As always, moderation and portion size are critical, she say. Zied emphasizes whole grains, raw fruits, and vegetables in a list of foods that provide good carbs, including brown rice, popcorn, apples, bananas, oranges, strawberries, and a limited amount of dried fruit.
Heat May Boost Chemo Results
Heat therapy, called hyperthermia, generally used to prevent local recurrences of tumors, is gaining new currency in light of some successful studies. Now some doctors speculate that it may improve overall survival rates as well. In many cases, "we saw rapid regression of the tumor," said Dr. Nisar Syed from Long Beach Memorial Medical Center, Calif., and in some cases, improved long-term survival.
Modafinil Not Ready for ADHD Use: Panel
A Food and Drug Administration advisory panel voted against recommending modafinil, originally approved by the FDA to treat narcolepsy, as a treatment for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in children. The panel wants the drug's maker to undertake additional trials; the drug was linked to developing Stevens-Johnson Syndrome, a sometimes fatal skin disease that can produce widespread blistering and rashes.



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