Yesterday, celebrity gossip website TMZ.com reported that legendary rap artist Heavy D died from a blood clot in the lung (Pulmonary embolus or PE) that was caused by Deep leg vein thrombosis. That terminology is incorrect since deep vein thrombosis can occur anywhere in the body, not just the legs. The correct term is Deep Vein Thrombosis or DVT.

DVT has been in the news lately because several high profile figures have been diagnosed with it, or died recently, including Heavy D and reality TV star Tamar Braxton's husband, Vince Hebert, who survived his bout with DVT and PE.

Pulmonary embolism is usually fatal and involves a blood clot (thrombus) traveling from the legs or arms and into the lungs (PE). People at high risk for DVTs are those who live a sedentary lifestyle (couch potatoes), sit for long periods of time at cubicle desks or travel long distances on planes.

Pulmonary embolisms are often misdiagnosed as something else — such as pneumonia or cardiac arrest. There are law firms that base their entire practice around misdiagnosed pulmonary embolism cases.

Anyone can be diagnosed with deep vein thrombosis. Other risk factors that predispose people to DVTs, include pregnancy, obesity, dehydration, crushing injuries, or people with strokes or heart conditions.

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Last Friday, Khloe Kardashian's husband, Lamar Odom, was almost traded to the New Orleans Hornets NBA franchise. Mr. Odom unleashed a series of angry tweets on Twitter.com, before claiming his Twitter page had been hacked into.

Then, during a moment of male bonding between Lamar and uber macho ESPN radio jock Stephen A. Smith, the 6 ft 10 in, 230 lb Odom dissolved into tears. Lamar's emotional response to this event might be due to the early stages of male menopause.

Emotional changes are one of the signs and symptoms of low testosterone in men that occurs when a male is going through "the change". Hormonal changes are a natural part of aging for both men and women. Though women experience more changes than men when hormone levels drop due to aging.

What exactly is male menopause?

According to the Mayo Clinic, male menopause is "sometimes used to describe decreasing testosterone levels or a reduction in the bioavailability of testosterone related to aging."

Male menopause occurs after age 30 on average. By about age 70, the decrease in a man's testosterone level can be as much as 50 percent. One of the first signs of male menopause in a man is weight gain around the midsection, aka pot belly.

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The last post I wrote on Body Image Disturbance (BID) profiled a 23-year-old woman who died of complications related to her sixth breast augmentation surgery.

Despite the increased media focus on botched butt enhancement injections, many women continue to put their lives at risk.

Miami Gardens police have arrested a man (pictured above) who posed as a fake doctor to conduct unauthorized plastic surgery procedures on a woman who required hospitalization afterwards.

Cops say 30-year-old Oneal Ron Harris injected a substance consisting of cement, "fix-a-flat," mineral oil, and "super glue," into his victim as a butt enhancement and then sealed the incision with "super glue."

The injections resulted in what police called a "serious medical condition," requiring the victim to be hospitalized.
Miami Gardens Police say Morris also performed a similar procedure on himself. Source

Body Image Disturbance (BID), or Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD) is a mental illness that is on the rise in the black community. Celebrities such as Nicki Minaj and Kim Kardashian help to perpetuate the myth that bizarrely altering a woman's body parts will bring them riches and fame.

Rather than improve a woman's low perception of herself, the illegal butt injections often results in depression, serious illness or death.

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On Saturday, Oct. 8, we posted Lil Wayne's "Public Service Announcement" video that we found on Derick G's blog.

To be honest, we didn't even watch one second of that video, because, after all, Lil Wayne was in it. But we regret not watching the video after reading the following email from loyal reader SouthernLegalDiva.

Sandra,

I know you do "medical minutes" frequently on your blog. Recently, Lil Wayne posted a PSA wherein he explains his use of Promethazine DM Syrup as being prescribed by a doctor as a sleep aid. I have never heard of this usage. I could only watch about 6 mins of the video, as the BS level was through the roof. It was featured on Straightfromthea.com

Thanks, SouthernLegalDiva

It's clear that Lil Wayne is still under the influence of drugs, specifically purple drank cough syrup -- but he's doing it legally, right under the nose of his probation officer. He says so right there in the video.

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The human papillomavirus virus (HPV) has long been linked to oral cancers in men through oral sex. But according to CBS and ABC, a new report shows that the rate of HPV linked oral cancers in men is rapidly increasing.

Though the report mainly focuses on an increase in the rates of upper throat cancers in men, the same is true for cancers of the tongue, neck and the mucus membranes lining the inner cheeks.

The report -- published in the Oct. 3 issue of the Journal of Clinical Oncology -- showed that cases of HPV-positive tumors in men rose from 16 percent in the late 1980s to nearly 73 percent by the early 2000s.

The HPV virus is the most commonly sexually transmitted infection. But the majority of HPV infections in young women usually disappear before 1 year, causing no symptoms.

The 5-10% of infections in women that persist for years will usually develop into cervical cancer.

While women can also get oral cancer, the risk to men is far greater. The majority of infected women show no symptoms, but the HPV virus is still floating in their vaginal fluid, and is easily transmitted to men, just like the HIV virus.

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In response to yesterday's post on Pseudocyesis (False Pregnancy), reader Genti Price writes:

I use to love reading your blog, I felt they were informative about some celebs. But I read and detect a lot of attitude when you discuss some celebs on your site, EVEN MORE NOW than before. You sound like a girl from high school who is on the newspaper committee, who, if [you] can't get [your] way with the person you think you should be able to, you will smear that person's name in the high school paper who didn't warrant any attention towards you.

There is no reason for you to post a picture of this woman with that title. Why not just find an actual medical article with a REAL person that is/was suffering from such condition? My God Sandra, we all know that this woman IS TRULY pregnant.

You talk about people needing to grow up.. YOU WEAR THAT VERY WELL.

May peace be upon you now and in the after life!

SR responds: Was that a threat?


Email was edited for length and clarity

Please note: any photos accompanying this post is used purely for illustration purposes and is not intended to diagnose any ailment or condition of the subject(s) in the photos.

Pseudocyesis, also known as false pregnancy or hysterical pregnancy, is a rare psychological condition in which a woman displays signs and symptoms of a real pregnancy even though she is not pregnant. The average age of women with pseudocyesis is 33.

To be diagnosed as true pseudocyesis, the woman must actually believe that she is pregnant. When a woman's pseudocyesis is found to be caused by underlying psychological problems, she should be referred to a psychologist or a therapist.

The symptoms of pseudocyesis, or false pregnancy, are similar to the symptoms of true pregnancy and are difficult to distinguish from real pregnancy, even by trained physicians because of false-positive pregnancy tests.

The most common sign of false pregnancy is abdominal distention or a bloated belly that is much larger than expected. The woman's abdomen (tummy) expands as a normal pregnant woman's would, but at a more rapid rate than a normal pregnancy.

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*Bumped...

The 24-year-old nephew of '70s funk star Bootsy Collins has died after a tooth infection spread to his brain.

Kyle Willis went to a hospital complaining of a toothache two weeks ago Collins' wife Patti told The Cincinnati Enquirer. The father of a 6-year-old girl had no health insurance and could not afford the $27 for his antibiotic prescription.

The tooth infection quickly spread to his brain and Willis died at the University Hospital in Cincinnati where he was transported after becoming violently combative and delirious.

The infection was able to spread to his brain through one of the few openings in the blood-brain barrier that normally protects the brain and spinal cord from infection elsewhere in the body.

The blood-brain barrier is a collection of cells wrapped tightly like a net around tiny blood vessels in the brain that acts as a filter to prevent the passage of large objects like bacteria and virus into the brain from the blood stream in your body.

The roots of your teeth sit within inches of the brain and are not behind the blood-brain barrier. Therefore your brain is not protected from dental infections.

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Yesterday, the sports world was rocked by the heartbreaking news that legendary University of Tennessee women's basketball coach Pat Summitt had been diagnosed with early onset dementia. The winner of eight national NCAA titles with the Tennessee Vols is only 59.

Imagine being 59 and finding out that you will soon wear adult diapers and be unable to care for yourself or maintain control of your most basic bodily functions.

The diagnosis was made after the Hall of Fame coach said she visited with doctors at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., after the end of the 2010-11 basketball season.

When Ms. Summitt was given her diagnosis she said she reacted with anger and depression. Then she accepted her diagnosis and eventually shared it with her student athletes. She told them she plans to continue coaching with the aide of her assistant coaches.

"I plan to continue to be your coach," Summitt said. "Obviously, I realize I may have some limitations with this condition since there will be some good days and some bad days."

Next to cancer, dementia is the worst type of diagnosis for an energetic woman like Pat Summitt who is so full of life.

Dementia is a gradual loss of cognitive function (altered thought process) which leads to chronic memory loss and disorganized thinking. The onset of the disease usually begins after age 65 and can lead to Alzheimer's disease within 10 years of diagnosis. Dementia is rare under age 65.

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According to published reports, Miami Dolphins wide receiver Brandon Marshall has been diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD).

Borderline Personality Disorder is a term that describes a cluster of mood disorders including narcissism, passive aggression and antisocial personalities.

The worst of all borderline personality disorders is the Malignant Narcissist.

So we shouldn't be surprised to learn that Brandon Marshall held a news conference to announce his diagnosis. Marshall told the gathered reporters that he wants to be "the face" of BPD. Narcissists love attention any way they can get it.

BDPs are known for their mood swings, rages and aggression which sometimes leads to violence.

In fact, it was violence toward Marshall's wife that forced him into therapy. But Marshall was in therapy once before and it didn't help. These personality types are master manipulators who are notoriously difficult to treat.

Borderline personalities, especially malignant narcissists, are hard to spot at first because they can be so charming and disarmingly handsome (or stunningly beautiful in the case of female narcissists). They literally spend hours in front of a mirror perfecting their image to woo their potential partners.

They are expert hunters who use their physical beauty to entrap their unsuspecting partners. Once they target someone as their prey they are hard to resist, and it isn't long before their object of affection thinks they're in love -- but that's when they switch up and their dark side emerges.

The first sign of trouble is an episode of narcissistic rage that seems to come from out of nowhere.

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Yesterday, we discussed your friend who humps every hawt man she meets. One week later, she's planning her dream wedding to him. She changes men like she changes her underwear, and she hops from bed to bed like a rabbit in heat.

Your friend is most likely an addictive personality type who raves about her love for men she barely knows. There's a certain level of desperation that separates her from other women in your peer group.

But here's a scenario from the perspective of a non-addictive personality type, who meets a man after being single for awhile. She would probably say something like this:

"I met a guy. He seems nice. We have a lot in common. We've agreed to see each other again. I'll wait and see where this leads..."

The non-addictive personality type is not as desperate to jump into a relationship with a man she just met. She's able to think more clearly and make better decisions. Her brain is not addled by dopamine, so she is more in control of her behavior and her thought processes.

She more than likely doesn't drink, smoke or do drugs. The non-addictive personality type channels her energy into more productive pursuits (and less destructive) activities, such as jogging or blogging.

So how does all of this tie into cheating? People who have addictive personalities develop destructive behavior patterns over time, such as cheating, abusing drugs or alcohol, gambling, pornography, and risk taking.

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Most of us have that one friend who seems to fall in love as easily as he or she changes their underwear.

She's the one who calls you every time she's met "The One" -- and she wants to share the exciting news with you -- again. Your friend has run through literally a hundred men. All the rest were "losers," she says, "but this guy is different. He understands me."

Before you know it, she's already planning her dream wedding to a guy she met just one week ago. She uses language such as, 'I met a new guy... he swept me off my feet!,' 'I LOVE him!,' 'He's so hawt!,' 'I CAN'T STOP THINKING ABOUT HIM!'

One of the reasons why your friend falls so hard for every hawt guy she meets, is because she is flying high off a dopamine rush. Your friend has what psychologists refer to as an addictive personality.

Addictive personalities are easy to spot: they're the ones with cigarette butts dangling from their lips every time you see them. They can't stop drinking or put down that weed, and they can play video games nonstop for hours on end without stopping to take a bite to eat.

Dopamine is the primary chemical in the brain that causes addictive personalities.

Basically, dopamine brightens and highlights our connections with the world around us, says David Goldman, Ph.D., a neuro-scientist with the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. "It's essential for associating something that happens with the feeling of pleasure." In other words, it reinforces behaviors that make us feel good. Source

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Troubled singer R.Kelly is recovering in a Chicago hospital following emergency throat surgery, according to his rep.

According to the Atlanta Journal, Kelly's publicist Allan Mayer said Wednesday that doctors drained an abscess on one of Kelly's tonsils on Tuesday and that the singer will be "laid up indefinitely" at Chicago's Northwestern Memorial Hospital.

Mayer says Kelly had been complaining of throat pain recently. He was rushed to the hospital for emergency surgery after a throat exam.

R.Kelly was on tour with Keyshia Cole and Marsha Ambrious as opening acts.

Tonsil abscess is a common complication of tonsillitis, a throat infection which usually occurs among the pediatric population. A tonsil abscess is a sac containing pus that collects behind or on the side of the tonsil. Symptoms begin appearing a week before the formation of an abscess.

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Here are pictures of Beyoncé and her husband Jay Z strolling in New York over the weekend. It looks like Jay Z continues to have problems with erectile dysfunction, otherwise known as priapism.

Priapism is a common side effect of a drug often prescribed for men with penile erection dysfunction, such as Viagra. Erectile dysfunction (or impotency) occurs when a man is unable to sustain an erection long enough to satisfy a woman (or man) during sexual intercourse.

Beyonceworld.net

A Twitter user posted this tweet on Twitter.com earlier today:

Knowing that EVERY penis started out as a vagina should help u to better understand why some men are such bitches

Twitter user @bprocks56, a male, asked: "how is that when Adam was created before Eve? #blankstare"

I saw this as a teachable moment: clearly some people aren't aware that all embryos have the same female genitalia until about the 8-12 weeks of gestation. This is why the sex of a baby can't be determined by ultrasound until after the sex organs are formed.

Here are male and female 9 week old embryos. Can you tell which is which? Click here to see the answer.

Image source: DM

Rapper/songwriter Missy Elliot is in the news after announcing she was diagnosed with Graves' disease in 2008.

Graves' disease is an autoimmune disorder that is the most common cause of hyperthyroidism. An autoimmune disorder is when the body's immune system (antibodies) attacks your body because it doesn't recognize it's own cells. The antibodies stimulate the thyroid gland (the gland at the base of your neck that secretes growth hormones) and causes the thyroid to go into overdrive (hyperthyroidism).

Graves' disease is the most common cause of hyperthyroidism in children and adolescents. When the disease occurs later in life, it is assumed that the cause is an infection that is viral or bacterial. The signs and symptom's of Graves' disease depends upon whether the hyperthyroidism is mild or severe.

In Missy's case, it sounds like her hyperthyroidism was severe enough to affect her neurologically. The major signs of Graves' disease are an enlarged goiter (your neck will be noticeably enlarged), exophthalmos (protruding eyeballs) or "bug eyes" (due to the antibodies irritating the muscles of the eyes) and skin changes.

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According to E! Online, troubled musician Kanye West gave the media the silent treatment as he walked the red carpet at the CDFA Fashion Awards yesterday. He told reporters multiple times that he wasn't answering any questions and he barely made eye contact with the press.

In addition to not speaking to the media since after his album dropped (and flopped), Kanye hasn't updated his Twitter account in months.

This silent treatment behavior by a narcissist is known as 'mental murder' because, in a sense, you are dead to them.

The silent treatment is one of the tools in the narcissist's sinister arsenal. It is the ultimate rejection. In the narcissist's arsenal, the silent treatment is a form of mental abuse.

When someone you love deeply gives you the silent treatment, the pain can be especially intense. The narcissist can ignore you for days, weeks, or even years. The narcissist usually ignores you until you apologize to them -- even though they were the cause of the conflict in the first place!

This is why the behavior is so abusive because the narcissist knows that no healthy person would apologize for something they didn't do. In this way they prey on your weakness and break down your defenses.

If you find yourself in a relationship with anyone who gives you the silent treatment for longer than 8 hours, please RUN!

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A deadly new E. Coli bacterium that is spreading rapidly through Europe has doctors and scientists stumped.

According to NPR, the new E. Coli strain is so virulent and deadly that it is "very rare" and has never been seen in an outbreak form before.

The new bacterium is similar to the E. Coli strain that doctors have seen in the United States. But the new strain is resistant to most antibiotics and it has a different method of making people ill.

The bacterium causes full-blown haemolytic uraemic syndrome (HUS), a condition that results in bloody diarrhea and large volume of blood in urine.

So far, 18 people have died, and 470 people have been sickened in Europe since the World Health Organization (WHO) sounded the alarm on May 20.

The new strain of E. Coli attaches itself to the intestinal walls and releases a deadly toxin that is absorbed through the intestinal walls into the bloodstream.

"What we think happens is the toxins get into the blood stream and injure the blood vessels. And the blood vessels form little clots, and there's impaired blood flow to organs throughout the body," said Dr. Phillip Tarr from Washington University in St. Louis.

This type of serious injury to blood vessels leads to kidney and liver failure, and can cause death. More than half of the people sickened by the new E. Coli require kidney dialysis.

"In almost all cases it's temporary," Dr. Tarr says. "Dialysis lasts a median of about 8 days."

But dialysis doesn't save everybody -- as evidenced by the 18 people who died in Europe in the last 2 weeks.

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Clinical depression occurs when an individual is unable to cope with their feelings of overwhelming sadness, hopelessness and despair. They often rely on suicidal ideations as a crutch to help them cope with depression. Once they make the decision to commit suicide, they will give the outward appearance of being happy and at peace. By that time it is too late to save them.

There are some in the black community who don't believe that depression is a serious mental illness. According to Mental Health America, African Americans are particularly at risk for clinical depression, but we are the least likely to seek therapy due to the stigma and myths surrounding the disease.

If your child mentions that he or she is depressed -- even once -- this is a bad sign. They probably summoned all the courage they had in them to approach you. It may be the only time they will come to you with their problem before attempting suicide.

Your response is crucial. Do not dismiss your child with bad advice such as "Get over it" or "We all get the blues, it'll pass." It won't pass.

Depression is caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain. For that reason, depression sufferers can't just "get over it" without intervention such as medication (anti-depressants) and therapy.

As black people, we must reject the belief that depression is a sign of weakness, or the lack of Jesus in our lives.

If you are unable to support your child emotionally due to your unfounded beliefs about clinical depression, please call a friend, or a crisis intervention group to support and provide the mental health resources that he needs.

There should be more of an emphasis on clinical depression today due to the high profile cases of gay teen suicides in the news. But sadly there isn't.

It's a shame that the national media continues to provide a disservice to their audience by claiming gay teens kill themselves because they were bullied or outed. In reality, gay teens kill themselves because they suffer from undiagnosed depression.

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When pictures hit the net of burlesque singer Beyonce and her husband, rapper Jay Z vacationing in Paris a couple of days ago, one set of pictures in particular caught my eye. Jay Z seemed to be experiencing priapism, or a persistent erection. In a few of the pictures Jigga covers his groin area with his massive hand in a poor attempt to conceal his full blown erection.

Priapism is a potentially harmful and sometimes painful medical condition in which the penis maintains erection and does not return to its flaccid (resting) state for a period lasting longer than four hours.

It was an embarrassing moment for Jay Z to be sure, but it is a common side effect of a drug often prescribed for men with penile erection dysfunction. Erectile dysfunction (or impotency) occurs when a man is unable to sustain an erection long enough to satisfy a woman (or man) during sexual intercourse.

I told you a couple of years ago that, according to a source, Jay Z, 41, was swallowing Viagra pills like they were Pez candies. According to the source, Jay Z has had trouble "getting it up" for years. Finally, out of desperation, he (allegedly) sought medical treatment to keep up with the sexual demands of his young wife, Beyonce.

Common causes of erectile dysfunction in men include cigarette smoking, diabetes, hormone insufficiencies, heart disease or drugs, such as anti-depressants and cocaine.

While it is a laughing matter for us ladies who (thank God) don't have such problems, most men can relate to Jay Z's predicament.

Click link to read more

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Another gay black male has succumbed to MRSA/staph infection. Yesterday, celebrity hairdresser and makeup artist Dariel Pulliam, who starred in TV's 'What Chilli Wants 2,' passed away after a brief illness. According to his family, he was hospitalized for 2 weeks with a staph infection in his lungs, which likely caused pneumonia. He was 29.

The family is asking for donations to help offset the funeral costs. If you would like to help, please call (410) 800-0379 or (443) 629-3008.

I am writing this post to educate my readers about this MRSA scourge in the gay community. All of us in the gay community know of at least one friend who has succumbed to MRSA infection.

Like Pneumocystis pneumonia was in the 80s and 90s, Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is rapidly becoming the #1 killer of people with HIV today.

Last year I wrote a detailed Medical Minute post about MRSA/ staph infections HERE. The reason I'm writing about this super bug again is to bring awareness to this scourge that is gaining a strong foothold in the black gay community.

As I wrote in my earlier post, those who are most at risk for MRSA infections are babies whose immune systems aren’t fully developed yet, the elderly and those with weakened immune systems, such as HIV/AIDS patients.

With the advance of anti-viral medications over the last 15 years, HIV/AIDS is no longer considered the early death sentence that it once was. But unfortunately, due to the increase in MRSA cases, the tide is turning in the black gay community. For black people living with HIV today, MRSA/staph will soon be the #1 killer.

The reason you don't hear much about MRSA/staph in the news is because it's mainly killing young black gay males who continue to engage in high risk sexual behavior without using protection.

Poverty, neglect and denial are reasons why the black community accounts for the highest cases of HIV/AIDS infections today. The mere suggestion that black gays "wrap it up" brings on animosity and resistance.

MRSA causes soft tissue infections, but it can also spread to the lungs (leading to pneumonia) or to the bones and heart valves. Most MRSA skin infections are harmless and resolve within days. The infection generally starts out as small red bumps or tiny blisters, boils or spider bites on the legs and arms.

In the mid 1980s, MRSA was a hospital based bacteria. The bug was able to spread from patient to patient because nurses and doctors did not wash their hands between patients. Over the last 20 years, MRSA has leaped from the hospital setting into the surrounding communities.

Most of us are now colonized with MRSA/staph. MRSA/staph is not a threat to most healthy people. MRSA bacteria lives on our skin, but mainly in our nasal passages and throat.

Staph becomes a problem when it enters the blood stream through a break in the skin such as a cut or scratch. Once in the bloodstream, it is very difficult to treat because MRSA/staph is resistant to most antibiotics. In patients with HIV, it quickly spreads from the original site of infection to the lungs where it causes pneumonia, or to the internal organs.

Signs and Symptoms of MRSA include:

  • Swelling, redness and tenderness of the skin around the wound
  • Foul smelly, pus or drainage from wound
  • Fever
  • Shortness of breath
  • Cough
  • Chills

This has been your Medical Minute.

More Info On The Web

Skin Problems and Treatments: Understanding MRSA - WebMD

MRSA - Mayo Clinic

DISCLAIMER:
Any medical information published on this blog is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with your personal physician or a health care provider.

Edited to correct Dariel's age. Originally posted on April 6, 2011 @ 9:24am

As you know, there was a series of explosions at several nuclear reactors in Japan following the earthquake and tsunami disasters.

One (or more) of the nuclear reactors is badly damaged and deadly radiation has escaped into the atmosphere.

If you're watching the news, then you know the the U.S. government is evacuating U.S. citizens to the United States from Japan. But there is more ominous news coming out of Japan that brings to mind the nuclear disaster that occurred at the Chernobyl nuclear plant inside Russia in 1986.

Technicians inside the plant were conducting tests on reactor #4 when a series of explosions rocked the building, exposing the reactor's core and sending radioactive dust and smoke spewing into the air. The fallout eventually spread all over Russia and Europe.

Neighboring countries had no idea what had occurred until their sensitive instruments began detecting high levels of radiation in the air above their cities. They knew that a nuclear accident had occurred somewhere, but they had no idea where because the Russians weren't talking.

On the other side of the globe, alarmed United States gov. officials asked NASA scientists to point their powerful satellite telescopes at Russia, whereupon they spied the giant plume of radiation smoke and debris rising into the atmosphere from the damaged nuclear reactor inside Russia. Only then did the Russians finally admit there had been an accident.

Thousands of people eventually died from radiation sickness, including 200,000 Russian civilians and soldiers who risked their lives to go into the nuclear plant to plug up the leaking reactor and decontaminate the site.

An entire town near the plant was evacuated and to this day it remains uninhabited. Wild animals and stray dogs and cats near the reactor and in the town were ordered shot and killed to prevent the spread of radiation.

I'm telling you this because there is a giant plume of radiation fallout from Japan drifting toward the west coast of the United States.

Click link to read more

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A CBS News LA affiliate is backing away from a previous statement on its website that said CBS2 and KCAL reporter Serene Branson had "no indication of serious medical problems" after she slurred her words live on air.

But Branson apparently suffered a TIA (transient ischemic attack, or mini-stroke) while broadcasting live on air a few hours after the Grammy's ended on Sunday.

KCAL-9 posted the statement on the station's website yesterday, saying Branson was examined on the scene by paramedics and then given a ride home by a colleague.

Viewers -- including a neurosurgeon -- immediately criticized CBS for diminishing what could be a potentially serious, career threatening illness for Branson.

Dr. John Krakauer, associate professor of neurology and neuroscience at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore, told CBS News. "Frankly, I would have admitted her."

On Monday night, anchors for KCAL-9 clarified the station's previous statement:

They said Branson had suffered from "health related problems" but that she is feeling better. They also said that Branson "followed up with a visit to the doctor for medical tests" and hopes to be back on the air soon.

Update:

Several online sources reported that KCBS reporter Serene Branson was rushed to a hospital in LA last night where she was diagnosed with a TIA, or what's known in the medical field as a trans ischemic attack (mini stroke).

A statement posted to KCBS' website disputes that:

"Serene Branson was examined by paramedics on scene immediately after her broadcast. Her vital signs were normal. She was not hospitalized. As a precautionary measure, a colleague gave her a ride home and she says that she is feeling fine this morning."

According to the LA Times, Branson told network executives that she is "feeling fine" and that there "was no indication of a serious medical problem."

But it is apparent that Branson suffered a TIA, or mini stroke, during her live broadcast from the Grammy's for KCBS last night.

She stumbled over her words after beginning by saying "Well, a very, very...," before mispronouncing the word ‘heavily’.

By downplaying the situation, KCBS missed a great opportunity to inform their viewers about the warning signs of a TIA.

I wrote a Medical Minute post about TIA's, which you can read here.

A TIA is sometimes referred to as a “warning sign” of an impending stroke. In Branson's case, the signal from her brain to her mouth was interrupted and she had trouble forming her words.

A TIA is categorized as a mini stroke because the symptoms lasts less than 24 hours. Most TIAs last less than 5 minutes. If the symptoms lasts longer than 24 hours it is referred to as a Cardiovascular Accident (CVA) or stroke. Some people experience a TIA and don’t even know it.

In Branson's case, she looked anxiously off camera before trying to continue to get the words out.

Originally posted on Feb. 14 @ 4:19 p.m.

A Florida teenager is in jail charged with burglarizing an air conditioning business.

When two deputies from the Monroe County Sheriff's Office responded to a silent alarm at the Windswept Appliance and Air Conditioning in Marathon, they found an unlocked office with a light inside. There they found 19-year-old Keith White in front of a computer monitor, pulling his pants up.

According to the officers, White, who was in a state of arousal, had been watching porn on an office computer, which was still playing on the monitor. White was charged with burglary, criminal mischief and theft.

Teenagers who can't control their sexual impulses may have a problem with obsessive-compulsive behavior. It can be particularly problematic when teens masturbate in public during the commission of a felony or other risky, illegal behaviors.

It can be a bit hard to determine whether your teen is a sex addict unless they are open about it or caught in the act. There are some things parents can do to help prevent their children from becoming addicted to sex. For one, parents should speak with their children about sex, especially if they have questions about it at a young age. Many parents tend to ignore these questions and will heavily sugarcoat or block it out altogether. Instead, parents should answer these questions during childhood, just as they would other questions children have about life.

If your teen compulsively acts on their sexual desires and continues to do it and won’t stop, there is a high chance that he or she could be addicted to sex. It is important that you seek help for your teenager as soon as possible to prevent him or her from getting worse. Sex addiction is known to cause lots of problems in the lives of sex addicts, including problems with relationships, families and friends. Financial problems and mental or emotional problems can also develop. Get help for your teen today with teen sex addiction treatment. Source

More Info On the Web

Teen Sex Addiction - Sex Addiction Rehab

Advice for Parents of Teen Porn Addicts - Focus On the Family

The appearance of 57-year-old pop star Cyndi Lauper's raw, red skin in paparazzi photos racing around the net today is probably the result of a professional chemical peel.

Chemical peels, also known as skin peel or derma-peel, has been around for ages. Many women get the treatment to soften and improve blemishes, skin spots, scars, wrinkles and the hard lines that appear in their faces as they get older.

Chemical peels have also been applied to treat severe acne in teens and young adults. The process uses a strong acidic (and non-acidic) chemical to strip away the damaged layers of the skin.

Increasingly, African American women are applying chemical skin peels at home to improve Hyperpigmentation, the skin damage caused by the sun.

Many black women complain of facial skin that is several shades darker than their necks and chests. This is caused by years of early exposure to the sun's UV-rays which significantly darkens our skin. This darkening of the skin can also lead to skin cancer among black women.

Chemical peels improves hyperpigmentation in African American women by lifting the layers of dead skin to reveal soft, smooth, lighter skin underneath. Even after successful skin peel treatment, many black women must apply a high SPF lotion or cream to their skin for the rest of their lives to prevent the sun's UV-rays from damaging their skin again.

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German adult film star Carolin Berger was never quite happy with her new breasts, even after undergoing 5 breast enhancement surgeries. So she opted for a sixth surgery hoping that would do the trick. Berger, who worked under the pr0n name Cora, died on Jan. 20 due to complications surrounding her sixth breast enhancement surgery.

She was 23.

This sad case illustrates the importance of educating the public about Body Image Disturbance (BID), or Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD).

How many times have you heard a friend say that her nose is too wide or her breasts are too small, when they look perfectly proportioned to you?

Acording to AtHealth.com:

Body image may be seen as "disturbed" when one's self-evaluation of appearance is at such a level that it interferes with social and/or occupational functioning, or causes elevated levels of anxiety and depression in the individual.

J. Kevin Thompson, PhD, co-author of Exacting Beauty: Theory, Assessment, and Treatment of Body Image Disturbance, explains that people who suffer from this disorder tend to focus irrationally on one or more of the following body sites: hair, nose, skin, eyes, thighs, abdomen, breast size or shape, buttocks, lips, chin, scars, height, and teeth.

These women will spend their life savings (or beg, borrow or steal) to surgically "correct" the body part that they believe renders them imperfect.

Assuring the BDD sufferer that she looks great won't do any good because she suffers from a mental disorder that limits her ability to visualize herself realistically.

According to Dr. Thompson, "almost everyone has some body feature that they would like to modify." But in the case of the BDD sufferer, they will "go to great lengths to modify the body site (via surgery, exercise, diet, etc.) or cover the feature (via make-up, clothing)."

There is no known cause of BID or BDD, and no known factors that might predispose a person to BID or BDD.

But most sufferers tend to be attractive people who were frequently told how beautiful they were when they were growing up.

This is why it is SO important to instruct your family and friends not to praise your child or focus on your child's attractiveness because children at that age are unable to process or handle that information the way adults can.

Some adults feel uncomfortable when they receive compliments on their beauty. Imagine how a small child must feel.

This world is full of Halle Berry's and Cora's who are psychologically damaged by adults who were captivated by their beauty as children. Don't let this happen to your child.

This has been your Medical Minute.

PLEASE NOTE:
Any medical information published on this blog is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with your personal physician or a health care provider.

When I saw this pic of 30-year-old singer Beyonce walking beside her husband Jay Z in Australia, my eye was immediately drawn to the faint spider vein on the back of her right leg (behind her knee). It appears that Beyonce is in the early stages of developing varicose veins.

Right away, I saw a teaching opportunity to inform my young readers who may not know that varicose veins can affect women as early as age 30.


The following is from The Mayo Clinic website:

Varicose veins are gnarled, enlarged veins. Any vein may become varicose, but the veins most commonly affected are those in your legs and feet. That's because standing and walking upright increases the pressure in the veins of your lower body.

For many people, varicose veins and spider veins — a common, mild variation of varicose veins — are simply a cosmetic concern. For other people, varicose veins can cause aching pain and discomfort. Sometimes varicose veins lead to more-serious problems. Varicose veins may also signal a higher risk of other circulatory problems. Treatment may involve self-care measures or procedures by your doctor to close or remove veins.

Signs and symptoms

  • Veins that are dark purple or blue in color
  • Can form anywhere on your leg from your groin to your ankle
  • Veins that appear twisted and bulging; often like cords on your legs
  • An achy or heavy feeling in your legs
  • Burning, throbbing, muscle cramping and swelling in your lower legs
  • Worsened pain after sitting or standing for a long time
  • Itching around one or more of your veins

Treatment

Self-care — such as exercising, losing weight, not wearing tight clothes, elevating your legs, and avoiding long periods of standing or sitting — can ease pain and prevent varicose veins from getting worse. Compression stockings also may help.

Wearing compression stockings is often the first approach to try before moving on to other treatments. Compression stockings are worn all day. They steadily squeeze your legs, helping veins and leg muscles move blood more efficiently. The amount of compression varies by type and brand.

Disclaimer:
Any medical information published on this blog is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with your personal physician or a health care provider.

Image source

Doctors at Cambridge have made a remarkable new discovery that could mean a cure for the common cold virus. The new discovery could also signal the end of AIDS since HIV, which causes AIDS, is also a virus.

Medical students have always been taught that the virus, which causes twice as many deaths as cancer, could not be killed once it enters the body's cells. Therefore, the virus was believed to be immune to the body's own defenses and to our most powerful antibiotics and anti-viral drugs.

But not any more.

A study by a team of researchers from the world-famous Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge has shown that this textbook explanation of the limits of the human immune system is wrong because anti-viral antibodies can in fact enter the cell with the invading virus where they are able to trigger the rapid destruction of the foreign invader.

In a dramatic breakthrough that could affect millions of lives, scientists have been able to show for the first time that the body's immune defences can destroy the common cold virus after it has actually invaded the inner sanctum of a human cell, a feat that was believed until now to be impossible.

The discovery opens the door to the development of a new class of antiviral drugs that work by enhancing this natural virus-killing machinery of the cell. Scientists believe the first clinical trials of new drugs based on the findings could begin within two to five years.

The Internet is buzzing about Nick Cannon's dramatic meltdown on Twitter.com yesterday.

Apparently, Cannon became unhinged when fellow comedian Chelsea Handler injured his ego by tweeting this:

I just heard nick cannon is starting a comedy tour. Who’s going to do the comedy?

Cannon, who was performing a stand-up comedy routine at the time, left the stage and took to his Twitter page to launch an astonishing attack against Handler.

His angry, over-the-top responses (he wrote 15 tweets to Chelsea's 1) was shockingly misogynistic, sexist, and some might even say, racist.

Here are a few examples:

Everyone knows @Chelseahandler had sex with the head of E! for her show. So when its canceled does he get residual pussy for the reruns?

Just talked to @50cent He said he made @chelseahandler get G-Unit tattooed on her balls!

@50cent wasn’t hitting @chelseahandler they was just sharing testosterone tips

Why do all these angry ugly whitetrash folks want beef with me?

Narcissistic Rage (also known as "blind rage") is described as a sudden, explosive verbal or violent response to a frustrating situation that ceases only when the person is able to express their rage.

The difference between narcissistic rage and anger is that healthy people feel angry whereas narcissists do not. A healthy person will say "I feel angry."

A quick test to see if you're dealing with a narcissist is to ask him what he's feeling.

He won't be able to answer you effectively because narcissists have trouble expressing their feelings verbally.

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