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Growing body of research says dogs really can smell cancer
August 17th, 2011
07:00 PM ET

Growing body of research says dogs really can smell cancer

A new study adds to the body of research suggesting that "man’s best friend" may actually be able to smell cancer.

Researchers in Germany found that dogs were able to pick up on the scent of organic compounds linked to the presence of lung cancer in the human body, and that their keen sense of smell may be useful for the early detection of the disease.

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Skin cancer drug approved early
August 17th, 2011
02:34 PM ET

Skin cancer drug approved early

Many patients with the deadliest form of skin cancer got a new treatment option Wednesday, as the Food and Drug Administration gave its blessing to vemurafenib, sold by Genentech under the brand name Zelboraf. It was approved to treat patients whose tumors have a specific gene mutation known as BRAF (pronounced “bee-RAF), and with advanced disease or whose tumors cannot be removed through surgery.

“It’s good day for melanoma,” says Tim Turnham, president of the Melanoma Research Foundation. “We’ve gotten two new drugs this year, after 13 years of nothing.” The other drug, Yervoy, was approved in March.

About 70,000 patients a year are diagnosed with melanoma, Most cases are caught early, but if disease spreads beyond the original tumor site, the average lifespan is measured in months without treatment.

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August 17th, 2011
10:20 AM ET

What can I do for kidney stones?

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.

Question asked by Julie from Illinois

I had surgery eight months ago to remove stones from my bladder. Today I found what I believe was a stone stuck to my vagina wall. I also had to have a urine bag for seven days after the surgery. Could it have come from where they inserted the tube in my kidney? I have had surgery for kidney stones in the past. I believe I recently passed another stone. Is this possible? What should I do?
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August 17th, 2011
10:08 AM ET

Erectile dysfunction: The leading indicator of heart disease in men

Editor's note: Dr. Sanjay Gupta explores the signs, tests and lifestyle changes that could make cardiac problems a thing of the past on "The Last Heart Attack," Saturday, August 27,  8 and 11 p.m. ET.

Dr. Dean Ornish who designed a diet and lifestyle to reverse heart disease will be live with CNNHealth to answer your questions. He will answer your questions Thursday, August 18, at noon EST.  Follow #LastHeartAttack on Twitter and Tweet your questions to @CNNhealth or ask them in the comment section here.

What's the leading indicator of heart disease for men? It's a surprising answer that affects at least 30 million men in the United States but most men don't talk about, according to the National Institute of Health.

The answer is erectile dysfunction, difficulty maintaining an erection sufficient for sex. "I would say that erectile dysfunction is the canary in the coal mine," says Dr. Terry Mason a urologist and chief medical officer at Cook County Hospitals in Chicago. "When men begin to have erectile dysfunction it's a sign that there's more widespread disease and not just for the heart but throughout all the blood vessels in the body."

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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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