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March 4, 2008, 4:16 PM CT

After cessation of postmenopausal hormone therapy

After cessation of postmenopausal hormone therapy
The Womens Health Initiative (WHI) scientists have produced another article [1], which probably marks the opening of another set of publications, in which the consequences of a further 2.4-year follow-up (after cessation of the study medication) on the estrogen + progestogen (E + P) cohort are reported. They concluded that, by the end of the post-intervention period, the global index, a newly formed and unvalidated tool used in the WHI trial, was still higher in women randomly assigned to receive E + P compared with placebo.

After such long and painful debates over the results of the WHI study and the perception that age is a very important determinant of the benefitrisk evaluation, it is really a pity that once again the current information on the extended follow-up period is presented in an unsatisfactory way, says Professor Amos Pines, the President of the International Menopause Society. It seems that the following mistakes were repeated:
  1. There is no mention of the results by age groups and yet, for the age group 5059 years, the data recorded for the active phase of the WHI E + P arm showed no significant increase in risk of coronary events, strokes and breast cancer in the early postmenopause period. Also, there is no breakdown of the data by years of follow-up. It would be extremely important to know whether the results for the first year post cessation of therapy are similar to those for year 2 and year 3 of follow-up.
  2. ........

    Posted by: Emily      Read more         Source


March 3, 2008, 10:07 PM CT

Students With Cell Phones May Take More Risks

Students With Cell Phones May Take More Risks
Carrying a cell phone may cause some college students - particularly women - to take risks with their safety, a new study suggests.

A survey of 305 students at one campus observed that 40 percent of cell phone users said they walked somewhere after dark that they normally wouldn't go.

A separate survey observed that about three-quarters of students said that carrying a cell phone while walking alone at night made them feel somewhat or a lot safer.

"Students seem to feel less vulnerable when they carry a cell phone, eventhough there's not evidence that they really are," said Jack Nasar, co-author of the study and professor of city and regional planning at Ohio State University.

"If anything, they are probably less safe because they are paying less attention to their surroundings".

Nasar conducted the study with Peter Hecht of Temple University in Philadelphia and Richard Wener of Brooklyn Polytechnic University in New York. Their results were published in a recent issue of the International Journal of Urban and Regional Research.

The study involved online or phone interviews with randomly selected students at Ohio State. One sample in 2001 included 317 students and a separate survey one year later included 305 students.........

Posted by: JoAnn      Read more         Source


March 3, 2008, 8:56 PM CT

Gender differences in forgiving

Gender differences in forgiving
Forgiveness can be a powerful means to healing, but it does not come naturally for both sexes. Men have a harder time forgiving than women do, according to Case Western Reserve University psychologist Julie Juola Exline. But that can change if men develop empathy toward an offender by seeing they may also be capable of similar actions. Then the gender gap closes, and men become less vengeful.

Exline is the lead author on the Journal of Personality and Social Psychologys article, Not so Innocent: Does Seeing Ones Own Capability for Wrongdoing Predict Forgiveness" She collaborated with researchers Roy Baumeister and Anne Zell from Florida State University; Amy Kraft from Arizona State; and Charlotte Witvliet from Hope College.

In seven forgiveness-related studies Exline conducted between 1998 through 2005 with more than 1,400 college students, gender differences between men and women consistently emerged. When asked to recall offenses they had committed personally, men became less vengeful toward people who had offended them. Women reflecting on personal offenses, and beginning at a lower baseline for vengeance, exhibited no differences in levels of unforgiving. When women had to recall a similar offense in relation to the others offense, women felt guilty and tended to magnify the others offense.........

Posted by: JoAnn      Read more         Source


March 2, 2008, 9:05 PM CT

How to Say "No" to Alcohol Advertising

How to Say
Teens who can recognize and resist the persuasive tactics used in alcohol ads are less likely to succumb to alcohol advertising and peer pressure to drink.

The results of a three-year study of inner-city middle school students by Weill Cornell Medical College scientists appears online in the journal Addictive Behaviors (April print edition). Prior research has shown the correlation between advertising and adolescent alcohol, use as well as the influence of peers in promoting adolescent alcohol use.

"There are a number of pressures on teens to drink. One very powerful influence is advertising - from television to billboards, it's everywhere. Our study found their ability to be critically aware of advertising as well as their ability to resist peer pressure are both key skills for avoiding alcohol," says Dr. Jennifer A. Epstein, lead author and assistant professor of public health in the Division of Prevention and Health Behavior at Weill Cornell Medical College.

Results were taken from surveys of over 2,000 predominantly African-American adolescents from 13 inner-city junior high schools in New York City over three years. The study observed that seventh graders better able to be critically aware of advertising - something the study terms "media resistance skills" - were significantly less likely to drink alcohol as ninth graders.........

Posted by: JoAnn      Read more         Source


March 2, 2008, 8:57 PM CT

Increased allergen levels in homes linked to asthma

Increased allergen levels in homes linked to asthma
Results from a new national survey demonstrate that elevated allergen levels in the home are linked to asthma symptoms in allergic individuals. The study suggests that asthmatics that have allergies may alleviate symptoms by reducing allergen exposures inside their homes. The work was carried out by scientists at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), the University of Iowa, Rho Inc., and the Constella Group. The teams findings may help millions of Americans who suffer from asthma.

Indoor allergen exposures are of great importance in relation to asthma because most people spend a majority of their time indoors, particularly at home, said Darryl Zeldin, M.D., a Principal Investigator in the Laboratory of Respiratory Biology at NIEHS and senior author on the paper.

Asthma is one of the most common chronic ailments in the United States, affecting more than 22 million people. Asthma has been shown to be triggered by a wide range of substances called allergens.

The findings, published online and available in the recent issue of the Journal of Allergy & Clinical Immunology, show that exposure to multiple indoor allergens was common in U.S. households with 52 percent having at least six detectable allergens and 46 percent having three or more allergens at increased levels. The indoor allergens studied included those from dog, cat, mouse, cockroach, dust mite, and the fungus Alternaria.........

Posted by: JoAnn      Read more         Source


March 2, 2008, 8:52 PM CT

Snoring linked to cardiovascular disease

Snoring linked to cardiovascular disease
Loud snoring with breathing pauses is linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and increased health care utilization, as per a research studyreported in the March 1 issue of the journal SLEEP.

The study, authored by Marta Novak, MD, PhD, of the Institute of Behavioral Sciences at Semmelweis University in Budapest, Hungary, focused on interviews with 12,643 Hungarian individuals. Interviews were carried out in the homes of the participants and questions about snoring were asked.

As per the results, loud snorers had 40 percent greater odds of having hypertension, 34 percent greater odds of having a heart attack and 67 percent greater odds of having a stroke, compared with people who do not snore, after statistical adjustment for age, sex, body mass index, diabetes, level of education, smoking, and alcohol consumption. Quiet snoring was associated only with an increased risk for high blood pressure in women. Loud snoring was also linked to increased use of health care resources (emergency visits and hospitalization).

Our findings suggest that loud snoring with breathing pauses carries a significantly increased risk for cardiovascular disease and is close to obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSAS) on the spectrum of sleep disordered breathing, therefore this simple question may identify high risk individuals whom may benefit from a sleep study, said Istvan Mucsi, MD, PhD, of Semmelweis University and Humber River Regional Hospital and Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto in Canada, co-author of the study.........

Posted by: Daniel      Read more         Source


March 2, 2008, 8:43 PM CT

Methylphenidate can have sleep benefits

Methylphenidate can have sleep benefits
Treatment with methylphenidate (MPH) appears to have beneficial effects on sleep parameters in adults with ADHD, including increased sleep efficiency and a feeling of improved restorative value of sleep, as per a research studyreported in the March 1 issue of the journal SLEEP.

The study, authored by Esther Sobanski, MD, of the Central Institute of Mental Health in Mannheim, Gera number of, focused on 34 non-medicated patients with ADHD, of whom 24 were without current psychiatric disorders, and 34 control subjects without current psychiatric disorders or psychotropic medication. In comparison to the control group, all subjects in the ADHD sample displayed reduced sleep efficiency, with longer sleep onset latency and more nocturnal awakenings. They had altered sleep architecture, with a higher percentage of stage 1 and reduced percentage of REM sleep. Patients also showed a trend toward the reduced total REM density and elevated percentage of wakefulness after sleep onset.

As per Dr. Sobanski, this study showed that objective and subjective sleep problems in adults with ADHD are identical with sleep problems in children with ADHD, including longer sleep latencies, more nocturnal activity, reduced sleep efficiency, more nocturnal awakenings and slightly decreased REM activity during sleep, eventhough the clinical significance of the last findings remains to be clarified.........

Posted by: JoAnn      Read more         Source


February 24, 2008, 10:12 PM CT

Empty Nest Syndrome May Not Be Bad After All,

Empty Nest Syndrome May Not Be Bad After All,
One day they are crawling, the next day they are driving and then suddenly they aren't kids anymore. As children reach adulthood, the parent-child relationship changes as parents learn to adapt to newly independent children. A new study by a University of Missouri professor explored the differences in how mothers and fathers interacted with their young adult children. She found there were few differences in the way mothers and fathers felt and that a number of of the changes were positive, despite the perception that mothers in particular fall apart and experience the so-called empty nest syndrome.

"As children age, direct caretaking and influence diminish, and children are often seen by their parents as peers with whom they are have continuing relationships," said Christine Proulx, assistant professor of human development and family studies in the College of Human Environmental Sciences. "Eventhough our between-families results suggest these patterns of change and continuity differ by parent and child gender, our within-family analyses suggest important similarities among mothers and fathers within the same family."

Of most concern to the parents in the study were firstborns' independence, time spent together and role patterns. The study observed that generally fathers and mothers reported similar changes in the parent-child relationship during their child's movements into young adulthood. Both fathers and mothers reported differences in independence/maturity of the child, closeness/openness in the relationship, contact/time spent together and changes in role pattern.........

Posted by: Janet      Read more         Source


February 17, 2008, 10:42 PM CT

Addressing global obesity epidemic

Addressing global obesity epidemic
As per Rena Wing, professor of psychiatry and human behavior at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and director of the Weight Control & Diabetes Research Center at The Miriam Hospital, people who are most successful in preventing weight gain, and dieters who lose weight and keep the pounds off, have made major changes in their in diet and exercise routines.

Using new research findings, Wing will make her case for big behavioral changes to stave off weight gain at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the worlds largest general scientific society.

At the meeting, held in Boston, Wing takes part in a Feb. 17, 2008 symposium titled Fighting the Global Obesity Epidemic: Small Steps or Big Changes" The symposium runs from 8:30 to 10:00 a.m. in Room 208 of the Hynes Convention Center. Wing will also attend a Feb. 17, 2008 press briefing on the topic of childhood obesity and nutrition. The briefing kicks off at 11 a.m. in Room 212 of the Hynes Convention Center.

We live in an obesogenic environment that relies heavily on fast food, automobiles, and remote controls all which can be labeled as toxic to maintaining a healthy body weight, Wing said. With our research, we want to determine the most successful strategies for maintaining a nor-mal weight in this toxic environment. Weve observed that bigger changes are needed for success.........

Posted by: JoAnn      Read more         Source


February 13, 2008, 9:28 PM CT

When it comes to physical activity

When it comes to physical activity
A landmark University of Alberta study, analyzing a sample of over 275,000 individuals, has observed that when it comes to participation in physical activity, one size does not fit all.

Our study uncovered some definite trends and preferences when deciding how and if a person wants to be physically active, says Brad Humphreys, an economics professor at the University of Alberta. It is clear that different genders, ethnicities and income levels have very diverse influences and choices when it comes to being physically active.

The study, co-authored with U of A professor Jane Ruseski, looked at a wide range of factors, including income, education and ethnicity, that influence whether a person decides to be physically active, as well as their time spent being active. It also examined the impact of government spending on parks and recreation on an individuals decision to participate in physical activity and sports.

At a 57 per cent participation rate, walking was found to be the most common form of physical activity undertaken for exercise. Results suggest that participation in walking increases with age, indicating that programs aimed at promoting walking for exercise could appeal to older populations, says Humphreys.

Choosing walking as the main form of physical activity may reflect the relatively low cost of this activity, says Humphreys. Walking can be done in almost any setting under almost any condition without needing specialized equipment or facilities.........

Posted by: JoAnn      Read more         Source



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Did you know?
Adolescents who suffer physical injuries are vulnerable to emotional distress in the months following their hospitalization, yet almost 40 percent of hospitalized adolescents interviewed for a new study had no source for the follow-up medical care that could diagnose and treat symptoms of post-traumatic stress. These young trauma survivors are at risk for high levels of post-traumatic stress and depressive symptoms, as well as high levels of alcohol use, according to research by researchers at the Harborview Injury Prevention and Research Center.

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