Thursday, September 29, 2011

Science you can use

Winners of the 2011 Ig Nobel Awards
MEDICINE: Matthew Lewis, Peter Snyder, Robert Feldman, Robert Pietrzak, David Darby, Paul Maruff along with Mirjam Tuk, Debra Trampe and Luk Warlop for studying the psychological effects of holding in urine.

The Root of the Problem

America's Great Dental Divide
Data released this month by the Gallup Organization shows a stark new axis of socioeconomic cleavage: those who regularly go to the dentist, and those who do not.

Access to dental care stands as a remarkably stark divide in American life, but it shouldn't come as a surprise. More than four in ten Americans pay their dental bills themselves, compared to just 10 percent of doctor’s visits, and the past decade or so has seen a vicious “oral cost spiral,” as June Thomas points out, with the costs of dental care far outpacing both the rate of inflation and overall medical cost increases. With incomes falling, unemployment rising, and poverty increasing, dental care has become a “luxury” that fewer and fewer Americans can afford.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Good News and Bad News

Twenty dollars says they will use this information to sell more insulin, rather than lower sugar consumption...

Diabetes May Significantly Increase the Risk of Dementia
The study found that people with diabetes were twice as likely to develop dementia as people with normal blood sugar levels. Of the 150 people with diabetes, 41 developed dementia, compared to 115 of the 559 people without diabetes who developed dementia.
Insulin May help treat Alzheimer’s
A study in the journal Archives of Neurology suggests that intranasal insulin - that is, delivered through the nose - may help with cognition and functioning in patients who haveboth mild and more severe dementia.
Patients treated with insulin were able to remember information over a period of time better than those who got placebo; in fact, performance improved 20%. They also showed an enhancement in brain glucose metabolism in some areas; those who received placebo tended to show a decline.
Alzheimer's patients in the insulin group benefited more in terms of daily function than those with mild cognitive impairment, but by definition mild cognitive impairment does not greatly impair daily functioning.

Exciting Results

Scientists discover virus that kills all types of breast cancer within seven days
The virus, known as adeno-associated virus type 2 (AAV2), is naturally occurring and carried by up to 80 percent of humans, but it does not cause any disease.
Researchers learned of its cancer-killing properties in 2005, after Penn State scientists observed it killing cervical cancer cells. They also found that women who carried the AAV2 virus and human papillomavirus (HPV), which causes cervical cancer, had a lower propensity to develop cervical cancer.
When combined in a lab recently, AAV2 eradicated all the breast cancer cells "within seven days," according to researchers. Better still, it proved capable of wiping out cancer cells at multiple stages, negating the need for differing treatments used today.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

How warped I am

My dream vacation in Las Vegas:
Hang out with Gil Grissom at some horrific crime scene.
Maybe Langston. I’m guessing we have a lot in common. He would probably feel a lot feel better with some simple lifestyle changes…

Gotta remember to pack some tank tops just in case.

Technical Difficulties

My work computer and mp3 player died on me this week. I am pretty much back up and running now, but my husband has plans to switch our web host over the weekend I think.
Anyhow, if the websites freak out, I'm sorry, I'm probably trying to fix them.

Party Time

This is really why we smoke and drink: because our stress level is amped up. Alcohol and cigarettes really do alleviate it.

Study Finds Alcohol Dulls Brain 'Alarm' That Monitors Mistakes
A new study testing alcohol's effects on brain activity finds that alcohol dulls the brain "signal" that warns people when they are making a mistake, ultimately reducing self control.
How Cigarettes Calm You Down
A team of researchers from the University of California studied the effect of nicotine patches on the subjects' tendency to retaliate in response to anger provocation. In some of the subjects, nicotine was associated with a reduced tendency to retaliate, even after provocation by the 'opponent'.
Not only that-
Alcohol magnifies the rewarding effects of smoking, even for light smokers

For the record, this is my all time favorite scientific study.
It's brilliant. Absolutely content-free. Wish I wrote it.

Coffee and cigarette consumption and perceived effects in recovering alcoholics participating in Alcoholics Anonymous in Nashville, Tennessee, USA.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Look outside the Box

One of my older friends read my Insanity site and felt the need to defend doctors. He believes that I was harsh and unfair. That doctors are doing their best.

Yeah well, your experience is biased.

First of all-
You’re a 70 year old retired businessman. You have heart problems.
-Try being a fat, miserable 30 year old woman. The reception is a bit different.

You haven’t tried to disagree with them yet. You have always been compliant. That’s what they want.
-I wanted to get better.

And secondly-
You haven’t noticed they don’t seem to be helping you. You say that you spontaneously recovered from your illness and your cardiologist is surprised. He didn’t think that radical change in your diet might be related? He might, but he won’t tell you that. Because he’s the one who recommended that low-fat diet you’ve been on for decades. He’s probably the reason you have diabetes now...

Up Late

Great old song from the 80's.

Walking in my Sleep- Jack Green

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Expected Behavior

Severe mania complicating treatment of narcolepsy with cataplexy.
We report the case of a 22-year-old male who exhibited severe manic behavior shortly after beginning treatment with modafinil and venlafaxine for narcolepsy with cataplexy. The manic episode persisted several weeks after medication cessation and required management with a mood stabilizer. Reinstitution of modafinil and an alternate antidepressant for recurrent sleepiness and cataplexy was well tolerated and very effective. Sleep physicians should be aware that psychostimulants, including modafinil, and antidepressant medications commonly prescribed for treatment of narcolepsy may precipitate mania in patients with underlying bipolar disorder.

Mania is caused by streptococcus.
Stimulants increase dry mouth and bacterial growth.
Not to mention increase dopamine responsiveness.

I believe this combination of illnesses is pretty common. Only the manic symptoms are ordinarily confounded by the overwhelming fatigue. and vice-versa.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Common Sense vs Marketing

Older pills often safer; many think new is better

Many consumers mistakenly believe new prescription drugs are always safer than those with long track records, and that only extremely effective drugs without major side effects win government approval, according to a new study.
A national survey of nearly 3,000 adults finds that about 4 in 10 wrongly believe the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approves only "extremely effective" drugs. One in 4 mistakenly believes the FDA allows only drugs that don't have serious side effects.

Insidious Symptoms

Amnesia and Desire

A lot of narcoleptics don’t even realize they’re having nap attacks. They think they’re just sleepy.
That’s because your brain distorts the experience. It shrinks time, makes you feel like you WANT to sleep, and sudden awakenings erase the memory of having been asleep in social situations.

You are the one who is the least aware of your involuntary behavior.

Things that make me laugh

Sunday, September 11, 2011


The last ten years have been pretty surreal for me. After a whole lot of thinking I have concluded:
No matter the topic- love or money or religion or politics…
At the core of any problem is insanity.
Nothing will change until we address that.

Best Wishes for a saner tomorrow.

Love is my foundation
Wisdom is my capital
Struggle is my manner
Truth is my redeemer
Sorrow is my companion
Love is my foundation

— Muhammad

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Look Closer

Omega-3 Effective for Treating Child ADHD
Supplementation with omega-3 fatty acid may decrease symptoms of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder in children, a new meta-analysis suggests. In an evaluation of 10 trials with 699 total children with ADHD, investigators found that those who received omega-3 supplements had a "small but significant" improvement in symptom severity compared with those who were given placebo. This effect was also significant in the children who received supplements that specifically contained higher doses of eicosapentaenoic acid.

Yoo hoo- researchers- omega-3 is antimicrobial. These results indicate you should be looking for an infectious vector…

Elimination Diet May Improve ADHD Symptoms
In a group of young children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, nearly two-thirds who followed a restricted elimination diet experienced a significant reduction in ADHD symptoms and oppositional defiant behavior. Going off the diet led to relapse.

Hypersensitivity or intolerance to foods or food additives is thought to contribute to ADHD. The children in the INCA study were unselected for any food sensitivities, and the researchers found that performing blood tests to identify ADHD "trigger" foods was not helpful. Blood tests assessing IgG levels against foods did not predict which foods might have a deleterious impact on a child's behavior.

This one is a little more subtle. The first part indicates that diet definitely affects the symptoms. The second part says it’s not a food allergy. They do not speculate what it is.

I’m cheating since I know the answer- ADHD is caused by a strep infection.
Diet affects microbes. They need to compare their list of trigger foods to things that accelerate bacterial growth … acid and sugar. That will probably show a pretty strong correlation.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Yo Psychs

Stop Talking Shit. Get your Cause and Effect straight.

Adverse events do not cause mental illness. Sickness does.
Sickness facilitates adverse outcomes. And then compounds them.


Thursday, September 8, 2011

Interesting Data

Statins reduce risk of death from infections and heart disease
ASCOT, the Anglo-Scandinavian Cardiac Outcomes Trial, was stopped early because the statin was so effective at preventing heart attacks and strokes, but a new analysis has shown that eight years on the most significant difference between the groups is a reduction in deaths from infection and respiratory illness.
In 2003, the trial was stopped early because the statin proved to be highly beneficial in preventing heart attacks and strokes. Since then, most participants from both groups have been taking statins.
The new analysis looked at the number and cause of deaths among the 4,605 participants in the ASCOT trial who are based in the UK.
After 11 years' follow-up, overall mortality is 14 per cent lower in the group originally assigned atorvastatin, due largely to fewer deaths from infection and respiratory illness.
The difference is largely explained by a 36 per cent reduction in deaths from infection and respiratory illness.
Deaths from cardiovascular disease were also lower in the original statin group, but the difference was not statistically significant. There was no difference in deaths from cancer.

First of all- most statins have not shown any great reduction in mortality. They do lower serum cholesterol, but they do not seem to change the incidence of cardiovascular disease. Sometimes the number of heart attacks goes down, but then the amout of strokes goes up.

This drug has shown remarkably different results. And now we know why. It has some kind of antimicrobial activity.

C. pneumoniae is a major cause of pneumonia. It also causes atherosclerosis.
Any reduction in the amount of cardiovascular disease can most likely be attributed to that, not any effect on serum cholesterol.

Although these results are impressive, I am not sure interfering with the cholesterol pathway is the best method of controlling pathogens. There may be an easier way.
The take away from this study should be: Lower People’s Infectious Burdens.

Dialing while Infected

Dutch woman calls ex-boyfriend 65,000 times
Dutch prosecutors are charging a 42-year-old woman with stalking after she allegedly called her ex-boyfriend 65,000 times in the past year. Hague prosecution spokeswoman Nicolette Stoel said Thursday the woman argued to judges at a preliminary hearing she had a relationship with the man and the number of calls she placed to him wasn't excessive. The man denied they had a relationship.

That's some Olympic level obsession there.
I get bored with mine long before I put that much effort into them.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

You Don't Listen

Here's my experience of doctors lately-

I tell them this infection in my head is making me crazy.
They roll their eyes and say "Of course it is!" at the same time they are completely dismissing the idea...

When I tell them I'm serious- then they roll their eyes and change the subject.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Bread and Water

In Russia, Harsh Remedy for Addiction Gains Favor

See the Pathology

From Wikipedia:
"Meth mouth" is an informal name for advanced tooth decay attributed to heavy methamphetamine use. According to the American Dental Association, meth mouth "is probably caused by a combination of drug-induced psychological and physiological changes resulting in dry mouth,extended periods of poor oral hygiene, increased consumption of sugared soft drinks, and teeth clenching and grinding.

Meth mouth characteristics include:
Bruxism (teeth clenching and grinding): methamphetamine induces bruxism, leading to the wear and cracks of tooth enamel.
Oral hygiene neglect: methamphetamine users often neglect oral hygiene.
Hyposalivation (dry mouth): a lack of saliva's natural protective effects directly leads to increased tooth decay, particularly at the gum line.
Despite the name "meth mouth", similarly accelerated tooth decay can be caused by the abuse of other stimulants with similar actions, such as amphetamines, cocaine and methylphenidate (ritalin).

Prematurely aging faces of methamphetamine users

I do not recall getting oral care advice with my scrip for amphetamines. But I don't remember much from that time. Did your doctor tell you this?

Friday, September 2, 2011

Fascinating Photo Essay

Where Children Sleep

Obsessing about Strep

Obsessing Over Strep Throat in Kids
A pretty good article about current research.
I disagree about the effect of antibiotic use though. It seems current treatment protocol for acute infections may actually facilitate chronic deep head infections.

I am trying to find someone who does research with adults. The fact that I can't find one is making me crazy.

Just my Opinion

The only form of gardening I enjoy involves a chain saw.
It's going to be a good day.

Old Song of the Day

I've been listening to this one since the day the album was released-

Bad Company - Peace of Mind

Thursday, September 1, 2011

How I Carry On

I know that there are millions of you out there. And that you are smart and clever and creative. And when you can unlock your minds- you will build the kind of world that I really do want to live in.

A couple more articles

Probiotic Bacteria May Lessen Anxiety and Depression
The researchers also showed that regular feeding with the Lactobacillus strain caused changes in the expression of receptors for the neurotransmitter GABA in the mouse brain, which is the first time that it has been demonstrated that potential probiotics have a direct effect on brain chemistry in normal situations. The authors also established that the vagus nerve is the main relay between the microbiome (bacteria in the gut) and the brain. This three way communication system is known as the microbiome-gut-brain axis and these findings highlight the important role of bacteria in the communication between the gut and the brain, and suggest that certain probiotic organisms may prove to be useful adjunct therapies in stress-related psychiatric disorders.
Now I am not urging you to run out and eat probiotics. This is a mouse experiment. According to Wikipedia, Lactobacillus rhamnosus is known to be pathogenic in some situations.

I just thought the part about the vagus nerve was interesting. That will come up a lot in my explanation of anxiety.

Common Irregular Heartbeat Raises Risk of Dementia
"Both atrial fibrillation and dementia increase with age," said Sascha Dublin, MD, PhD, a Group Health Research Institute assistant investigator who led the research. "Before our prospective cohort study, we knew that atrial fibrillation can cause stroke, which can lead to dementia. Now we've learned that atrial fibrillation may increase dementia risk in other, more subtle ways as well."
Herpes viruses can cause both atrial fibrillation and dementia.

Tic Tic Tic Tic

So I was cooking dinner and watching forensic shows again. I apparently wasn't paying attention, because all of a sudden I hear "STELARA is a prescription medicine that affects your immune system. STELARA can increase your chance of having serious side effects." They then went on:
STELARA can make you more likely to get infections or make an infection that you have worse.

STELARA may decrease the activity of your immune system and increase your risk for certain types of cancer.

Reversible posterior leukoencephalopathy syndrome (RPLS) RPLS is a rare condition that affects the brain and can cause death.
This is a drug to treat plaque psoriasis. Plaque psoriasis is an autoimmune reaction to streptococcus. These people have an untreated strep infection somewhere in their body and the antibodies are attacking their skin instead.

Rather than find it and treat it, this drug shuts down their immune system so they don't make antibodies at all.

Imagine the possibilities of clearer skin indeed.