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.

A Twitter user posted this tweet on 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

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.

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