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May 18th, 2011
10:56 PM ET

On HIV Vaccine Awareness Day, the search continues

May 18 is HIV Vaccine Awareness Day. It's a day to remember the thousands of volunteers, health care professionals, advocates, scientists and community members who work tirelessly on a safe, effective vaccine. But 30 years into the epidemic that has claimed the lives of more than half a million Americans, there is still no vaccine. That's not to say there haven't been a number of promising clinical trials.

The National Institutes of Health says it continues to move toward that goal. Dr. Anthony Fauci, director at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, says he is optimistic there will be one and says a trial of 16,000 people in Thailand in 2009 proves a safe and effective vaccine is possible. In that trial the vaccine was well tolerated and was 31% effective in preventing HIV infection.

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Fewer screening tests for cancer may soon be doctor's orders
May 18th, 2011
06:00 PM ET

Fewer screening tests for cancer may soon be doctor's orders

For men being screened for prostate cancer, the results of a PSA test can become mired in confusing caveats. The test measures the level of a protein called prostate-specific antigen in a man’s blood.  A positive test may indicate the presence of a virulent form of the disease, or not, since PSA tests are not sensitive enough to distinguish between deadly cancers and those that would never kill the patient. All of that makes deciding how to interpret PSA tests difficult.

A new study may add some much-needed clarity to that process.

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SF to vote on male circumcision in November
May 18th, 2011
05:33 PM ET

SF to vote on male circumcision in November

San Francisco voters will  decide whether to ban male circumcision in the November 8 municipal election.

Activists gathered enough signatures to put a proposal on the ballot, the city's election board confirmed Wednesday.

The measure  aims to prohibit all male circumcisions in San Francisco. Led by Lloyd Schofield who is part of a Bay Area “intactivist” group, the advocates want to eliminate the  surgery and liken it to  "male genital mutilation." FULL POST


Stop selling higher dose Alzheimer's drug, group says
May 18th, 2011
05:05 PM ET

Stop selling higher dose Alzheimer's drug, group says

A specific dose of Alzheimer’s drug should be pulled from the market because it poses a risk to patients, according to a consumer  group.

The drug, donepezil, sold under the brand Aricept, is administered in several doses – the highest being 23 milligrams – for patients with moderate to severe Alzheimer’s disease.

It is prescribed to improve mental function, such as memory, attention and reasoning by increasing a brain chemical. Aricept which is taken daily,  could slow the mental decline, but it does not cure or prevent Alzheimer's.  FULL POST


NBA owner's son nets laughs in promoting tumor awareness
May 18th, 2011
01:59 PM ET

NBA owner's son nets laughs in promoting tumor awareness

Nick Gilbert, 14, perched next to NBA owners and millionaires.

Sitting casually in black plastic glasses and spotted bow tie, the  oldest child of the Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert  represented the team in the NBA draft lottery that would deliver them the first and fourth picks in the draft.

Nick has a condition in which tumors can grow anywhere on his body.

When the ESPN reporter Heather Cox asked him: “You’re the ambassador for the National Children’s Tumor Foundation and you’ve been dealing with a nerve disorder since you were born.  Your dad called you his own personal hero. How’s that make you feel?”

Cool as a cucumber, the teen replied: “Well, I mean, what’s not to like?” FULL POST


Clearer kids' dosing urged for acetaminophen-containing meds
May 18th, 2011
01:36 PM ET

Clearer kids' dosing urged for acetaminophen-containing meds

It's a stressful moment for parents: Your little baby is awake in the middle of the night, crying and screaming with a fever. You reach for the children's fever-reducer in your medicine cabinet but the side of the box says to "ask a doctor" about the appropriate dose for a child under two. But at that hour, you can't reach a doctor. How much medicine do you give your child?

To make that guessing game easier, two FDA advisory committees have voted to recommend that dosing information for children six months to two years old be added to all over-the-counter children's medicines containing acetaminophen. Members of the FDA's Nonprescription Drugs Advisory Committee and the Pediatric Advisory Committee held a joint meeting for two days to hear testimony from, among others, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Consumer Healthcare Products Association, and McNeil Consumer Healthcare, the manufacturer of Children's Tylenol, one of the most common children's medicines that contains acetaminophen.

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May 18th, 2011
07:23 AM ET

Can diabetes cause fatigue, body ache?

Every weekday, a CNNHealth expert doctor answers a viewer question. On Wednesdays, it's Dr. Otis Brawley, chief medical officer at the American Cancer Society.

Asked by Mike from Tennessee

Can diabetes be a (possible) cause of fatigue, leg and lower back aches? I have had bursts of energy for 10 to 15 minutes, but then need to sit for about 10 minutes, and I'm ready to go full steam again. PLEASE, Thank You, Mike
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Males should get HPV vaccine too, study says
May 18th, 2011
07:15 AM ET

Males should get HPV vaccine too, study says

Men also carry the human papillomavirus, the virus that can lead to male cancers and genital warts.  And they could spread HPV to their sexual partners, putting those people at risk for cervical cancer.

So the HPV vaccine, that is often recommended for girls, should extend to boys as well, say researchers from Innsbruck Medical University in Austria. Their study was presented at the meeting of the American Urological Association on Tuesday.

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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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