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February 15th, 2011
08:11 PM ET

Annual prostate cancer testing not necessary for some

Less may be more when it comes to prostate cancer screening, says a new study released this week at the Genitourinary Cancers Symposium in Orlando, Florida.

A study by Dutch researchers found that men whose first prostate-selective antigen or PSA blood test came back under 3.0 may not need annual testing; and those with levels under 2.0 can most likely go eight years before getting retested.

"The rate of cancer is very low in men with PSAs less than 3," said Dr. Nicholas Vogelzang, a spokesman for the American Society of Clinical Oncology, and moderator of the conference.

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Balding in 20s could hint at prostate cancer later in life
February 15th, 2011
08:05 PM ET

Balding in 20s could hint at prostate cancer later in life

Men who start losing their hair at 20 may be twice as likely to get prostate cancer later in life, a new study suggests.
If men started going bald in their 30s or 40s, the risk did not go up, according to this research.

"'Any type of balding [at age 20] is a risk factor for prostate cancer," suggests Dr. Michael Yassa, lead author of the study and a radiation oncologist at Maisonneuve-Rosemont Hospital in Montreal, Canada. He says an earlier study suggested that back of the head balding was worse, but this study found any type of balding is a risk factor for prostate cancer.

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Zinc may curb cold symptoms
February 15th, 2011
07:37 PM ET

Zinc may curb cold symptoms

As everyone knows, there's no cure for the common cold. So most people simply suffer through two or more colds a year, often missing days of work or school in the process.

Scientists still haven't found a cure, but a new expert review suggests that taking zinc supplements may help ease cold symptoms—and may even prevent the viral infections altogether.

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Get Some Sleep: Fibromyalgia raises restless leg risk
February 15th, 2011
07:08 PM ET

Get Some Sleep: Fibromyalgia raises restless leg risk

Lisa Shives, M.D., is the founder of Northshore Sleep Medicine in Evanston, Illinois. She blogs on Tuesdays on The Chart. Read more from her at Dr. Lisa Shives’ Sleep Better Blog.

Kim is a 44-year old woman who came to sleep clinic to investigate her fitful and unrefreshing sleep.  She has also suffered from fibromyalgia, or FM,  for many years and has always assumed that her poor sleep was due to the fibromyalgia and that the best thing was to try to treat the FM.  She has been on the antidepressant Cymbalta for about one year and felt remarkable improvement in her FM symptoms.  However, she feels that her sleep is even worse. Upon further questioning, she did meet the clinical criteria for restless legs syndrome; she  answered yes to all four diagnostic questions.

I wasn’t surprised because a recent study published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine shows that adults with fibromyalgia have a much higher prevalence and risk of RLS than adults without the condition.

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Filed under: Sleep

Problem teen drinking is not just a phase
February 15th, 2011
06:01 PM ET

Problem teen drinking is not just a phase

Problem drinking during the late teenage years is a real problem, not just a phase, that can signal problem drinking in young adulthood, according to a new study. The findings are published in Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research.

“The key finding was that the more drinking-related problems experienced by an adolescent at age 18, the greater the likelihood that adolescent would be diagnosed with alcoholism seven years later, at age 25," said lead study author Richard R. Rose of Indiana University.  "The analysis of co-twins ruled out factors such as parental drinking and household atmosphere as the source of the association, because twins jointly experience these." Rose said that because twin teens in the study had the same parental, environmental and genetic factors, the results provide strong evidence that drinking behavior at age 18 is a strong predictor for drinking behavior at age 25.

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February 15th, 2011
10:11 AM ET

What is the antidepressant called Emsam?

Question asked by Samantha Gray of Oklahoma:

I am a 26-year-old female. I have a diagnosis of bipolar disorder, PTSD, and anxiety. The doctor gave me samples of a transdermal patch called Emsam. What can you tell me about the medicine and possible side effects?

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Heart guidelines revised to better reflect real life
February 15th, 2011
12:01 AM ET

Heart guidelines revised to better reflect real life

In an effort to combat heart disease, the No. 1 killer in women, the American Heart Association is re-tooling its prevention guidelines to reflect more of what doctors see in the real world, not in research trials.

Previous guidelines from 2007 leaned more on results from clinical trials but the patients doctors see in their practices are older, sicker and experience more side effects than patients in research studies. Doctors are being encouraged to tailor their treatment strategies to meet the needs of individual women and to talk with their patients about their risks. A healthy dialogue between patient and doctor is a critical first step in prevention.

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About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.

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