Posted in Blood, Health, news, Politics

Majority of US Governors Proclaim State Blood Donation Days to Fight Blood Shortage

Multiple governors are proclaiming state blood donation days in response to blood bank shortages throughout the country.

Each year multiple Governors declare state blood donation days to unite during National Blood Donation Week.

This year more are uniting to help bring in more blood supply.

According to the American Red Cross, 36,000 units of blood are needed in the U.S. every day.

Emergency rooms treating trauma victims, hospitals treating anemic patients, and medical clinics replenishing low blood levels in cancer patients require a steady supply of blood products.

38% of the U.S. population is eligible to donate blood but less than 10% actually do.

Inconsistent donation patterns during the year result in unpredictable and reliable blood supply numbers, hence donation is requested year round.

Vitalant, formerly known as United Blood Services, suggests donating three times a year.

The summer and holiday season appear to be the “dryest” in terms of donations.  States and regions frequently need to ship blood to areas who are in need.

National Blood Donation Week is September 2-9th and this year National Blood Donation Day falls on September 5th, with many states declaring September 5th their State Blood Donation Day.

U.S. blood drop

States who have already proclaimed September 5th their Blood Donation Day this year include:

  • Alabama
  • Arkansas
  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • Georgia
  • Florida
  • Idaho
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Kansas
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • Nebraska
  • Nevada
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Pennsylvania
  • Rhode Island
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Utah
  • Vermont
  • Virginia
  • Washington
  • West Virginia
  • Wisconsin
  • Wyoming

Arizona has proclaimed September 2-9th Arizona Blood Donation Week

…….with more to come as the date nears.

To donate blood or host a blood drive, please visit the American Red Cross or Vitalant websites.

For a list of governor proclamations visit here.

 

Daliah Wachs, MD, FAAFP is a board certified Family Medicine Physician and a nationally syndicated radio personality on GCN Network, KDWN, and iHeart Radio.

 

Posted in Health, news, sex, Sports

Concussions Can Lead to Erectile Dysfunction

A recent study has found former NFL players to be at risk for erectile dysfunction if they sustained a concussion during sports.

Harvard researchers looked at 3,400 former professional football players and found in those who sustained some sort of head trauma, 18% had low testosterone (Low T), 23% reported erectile dysfunction (ED) and 10% had both low T and ED.

The cause of the low testosterone is not clear, but researchers believe it could be due to damage to the pituitary gland.  If the gland is damaged, signals to the testes where testosterone is produced could be disrupted.

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Authors write:

One possible explanation, the research team said, could be injury to the brain’s pituitary gland that sparks a cascade of hormonal changes culminating in diminished testosterone and ED. This biological mechanism has emerged as a plausible explanation in earlier studies that echo the current findings, such as reports of higher ED prevalence and neurohormonal dysfunction among people with head trauma and traumatic brain injury, including military veterans and civilians with head injuries.

The more head injuries, the higher the risk of sexual side effects noted.  Medical providers need to be aware that among the issues that could arise down the line in those who sustain trauma to the head (i.e. headaches, mood swings, insomnia, depression), sexual dysfunction may need to be screened as well.

Could Dementia and CTE be Prevented with Oxygen Therapy?

 

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Are Many Athletes at Risk for Depression?

 

ED Linked to Heart Disease

For years, men have voiced frustration when their medical providers insisted on a cardiac workup prior to initiating an ED prescription.  Some thought it was because they’d have a heart attack during sex.  But it’s not.  Erectile dysfunction is a vascular issue, and if the vessels of the penis are compromised, how does one know his heart vessels aren’t as well?

Now in a recent study from John Hopkins School of Medicine found an increase risk of stroke, heart attack and cardiac arrests in those men who suffered from erectile dysfunction.  Study author, Michael Blaha, professor of Medicine, states, “Our findings suggest that clinicians should perform further targeted screening in men with erectile dysfunction, regardless of other cardiac risk factors and should consider managing any other risk factors — such as high blood pressure or cholesterol — that much more aggressively.”

 

Last December, a study published in the Journal of Vascular Medicine, found the same risk factors leading to erectile dysfunction are also culprits in heart disease.

Risk factors shared by both erectile dysfunction and heart disease include:

  • High Blood Pressure
  • High Cholesterol
  • Diabetes
  • Smoking
  • Men over age 45
  • Physical inactivity
  • Stress
  • Obesity
  • Family history of heart disease

 

Last year, researchers from Mount Sinai Medical Center, Florida International University and Baptist Health South Florida reviewed multiple studies and found a link between erectile dysfunction and compromised blood vessels whose endothelium (lining) demonstrated impaired vessel relaxation. This is necessary for both erections as well as blood flow to the heart and rest of the body.

Moreover carotid media-intima thickness, a marker of atherosclerosis, appeared to be correlated to erectile dysfunction as well.

Both studies remind us that if one bodily function is impaired, other organs may be quietly suffering the same impairment.

I like to credit the pharmaceutical companies that created erectile dysfunction drugs with saving millions of men’s lives as:

  1. Men who would refuse to come into any doctor’s office now had an incentive to, resulting in a long-overdue check-up
  2. Those who saw providers who required an EKG or diabetic screening, and unknowingly suffered from a serious cardiac risk factor, could now be diagnosed.
  3. ED drugs allowed those men who couldn’t enjoy sex to now get some much-needed physical activity

Young men aren’t immune to cardiovascular disease and need to be screened as well if they have issues starting or maintaining erections.

ultimate book cover final

Great Gift!!!

The Ultimate Medical Student HandBook

 

Daliah Wachs, MD, FAAFP is a nationally syndicated radio personality on GCN Network, KDWN, and iHeart Radio.

Posted in cancer, Entertainment, Health, news

Eddie Money Reveals He Is Battling Advanced Esophageal Cancer

70 year-old music legend, Edward Mahoney “Eddie Money”, revealed in a video released by his realty TV series “Real Money” that he has stage 4 esophageal cancer.

The episode airs on AXS TV on September 12 and discusses how he went in for a routine screen when he was diagnosed.

He recently underwent heart valve surgery and reports say he also battled pneumonia.

Despite the cancer having spread to his liver, lymph nodes and stomach, he appears optimistic saying cancer has come a long way since the 1950’s and 60’s and “everyday above ground is a good day.”

What is esophageal cancer?

Esophageal cancer can occur anywhere along the gullet/food pipe.  There are different types such as adenocarcinoma (lower portion near the stomach), more commonly seen in Caucasians, and squamous cell carcinoma (middle to upper esophagus) more commonly seen in African Americans.  It’s the 6th common cause of cancer death worldwide and comprises 1% of all cancers diagnosed in the US.

According to the American Cancer Society, estimates for 2019 include:

  • About 17,650 new esophageal cancer cases diagnosed (13,750 in men and 3,900 in women)
  • About 16,080 deaths from esophageal cancer (13,020 in men and 3,060 in women)

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What are the symptoms of esophageal cancer?

Early esophageal cancer may not exhibit any signs. However if it progresses, symptoms may include any of the following:

  • abdominal pain
  • heartburn
  • feeling full despite not eating
  • nausea
  • vomiting blood
  • weight loss
  • loss of appetite
  • chest pain
  • cough

 

What are the risk factors for esophageal cancer?

Although esophageal cancer appears to afflict men more than women, risk factors  include:

  • Smoking
  • Alcohol use
  • Frequent imbibing of hot liquids
  • Obesity
  • Chronic GERD or heartburn that may have led to esophagus lining changes such as Barrett’s Esophagus disease
  • Vitamin deficiency
  • Drinking liquids that contain lye, an alkaline  chemical present in many soaps
  • Prior radiation to the chest

 

What is the prognosis of esophageal cancer?

If caught early and localized, the 5-year survival rate is over 45%. However, if it has spread, the 5 year survival rate can range any where from 5-20%.

 

How is esophageal cancer treated?

There are a variety of treatments for esophageal cancer including surgery, chemotherapy and radiation.

 

ultimate book cover final

Great Gift!!!

The Ultimate Medical Student HandBook

 

Daliah Wachs, MD, FAAFP is a nationally syndicated radio personality on GCN Network, KDWN, and iHeart Radio.

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in cancer, Health, news, Politics

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Undergoes Additional Pancreatic Cancer Treatment

Ruth Bader Ginsburg reportedly has undergone pancreatic cancer treatment and is doing well.

The radiation treatment took place at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and began earlier this month when doctors found a tumor on her pancreas.

A statement from the Supreme Court reads:

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg today completed a three-week course of stereotactic ablative radiation therapy at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City. The focused radiation treatment began on August 5 and was administered on an outpatient basis to treat a tumor on her pancreas. The abnormality was first detected after a routine blood test in early July, and a biopsy performed on July 31 at Sloan Kettering confirmed a localized malignant tumor. As part of her treatment, a bile duct stent was placed. The Justice tolerated treatment well. She cancelled her annual summer visit to Santa Fe, but has otherwise maintained an active schedule. The tumor was treated definitively and there is no evidence of disease elsewhere in the body. Justice Ginsburg will continue to have periodic blood tests and scans. No further treatment is needed at this time.

 

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Last Fall, the Supreme Court Justice had surgery to remove two cancerous nodules in her lungs.

These were found a few weeks prior when she was undergoing treatment for a fall in which she sustained broken ribs on her left side.

The pulmonary lobectomy surgery occurred at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City as well.

Reportedly her current cancer does not appear to have spread to other parts of the body.

The 86-year-old Justice has previously battled colon cancer as well.

Each year over 56,000 Americans are diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, whose 5-year survival rate is 5%.  Older individuals who are healthy can do as well as those who are younger when diagnosed with advanced stage of the disease.  However some sources cite the median survival time is between 2 and 6 months if the cancer is diagnosed at a late stage.

This is a developing story.

 

ultimate book cover final

Great Gift!!!

The Ultimate Medical Student HandBook

 

Daliah Wachs, MD, FAAFP is a nationally syndicated radio personality on GCN Network, KDWN, and iHeart Radio.

Posted in football, Health, news

John Elway Reveals His “Viking Disease” Prevented Him From Holding a Football

Super Bowl Champion Quarterback and Bronco’s General Manager John Elway revealed  to TODAY that he was diagnosed with a debilitating hand condition 15 years ago.  After he retired in 1999 he developed contractures, or permanent bendings of his fingers.  It affected both his ring fingers such he couldn’t straighten them out and subsequently couldn’t hold a football.

In the interview he states,

“It is hereditary and it also called the ‘Viking’s Disease.’
“If you have a Norwegian background, you have a higher chance of developing it. That’s a possibility for me, but nobody else in my family has had it. I’m not sure if me playing football has played a part too.”

“Viking’s Disease”, or Dupuytren’s Disease, is thought to have originated in the Viking population and spread throughout Northern Europe during the 9th and 10th Century.  It wasn’t until French physician, Baron Guillaume Dupuytren, described the flexion of the fingers and hand contorsion that it received its modern name of “Dupuytren’s Contracture.”

In Dupuytren’s disease, the fascia, or fibrous layer that surrounds the muscles and tendons underneath the skin in the hand becomes thickened and tents, or tightens around the local area.  This can cause a contracture, or pulling of the finger to a position in which they can’t extend or straighten back out.

 

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Image above from CliffordCraig.org.au

 

Risk factors for Dupuytren’s disease with resulting contractures include:

  • Diabetes
  • Genetics
  • Northern European ancestry
  • Older age
  • Male
  • Alcohol use

Treatments include conservative measures such as steroid injections, enzyme injections and therapy and in more severe cases surgical options are available.

John Elway states he chose to go the conservative route and forewent surgery.  It was successful and he now has normal movement of his fingers but the condition can return.  The football legend is currently a spokesperson for the Facts On Hand Campaign, raising awareness of this common condition.

 

ultimate book cover final

Great Gift!!!

The Ultimate Medical Student HandBook

 

Daliah Wachs, MD, FAAFP is a nationally syndicated radio personality on GCN Network, KDWN, and iHeart Radio.

 

Posted in cancer, Health, marijuana, news

Pot Found to Have Positive Effects on Pancreatic Cancer

A study out of Harvard found cannabis (the non-psychedelic component of marijuana) to decrease tumor size is mice afflicted with pancreatic cancer by 70%.

getty_rm_photo_of_medical_marijuana_plant

The researchers from Dana-Farber Cancer Institute found a small chemical within cannabis called  FBL-0G3, also known as a flavanoid, a naturally occurring substance in many plants responsible for their vibrant color, and known for its antiiflammatory properties.

Marijuana Medical Benefits are Strain Specific

When mice with pancreatic cancer were given the FBL-0G3 along with radiation, their tumors shrank and in many, stopped growing.  The FBL-03G anticancer properties were also witnessed in a lab setting when combined with pancreatic cells in a petrie dish.

They conclude:

The findings demonstrate the potential for this new cannabis derivative in the treatment of both localized and advanced pancreatic cancer, providing impetus for further studies toward clinical translation.

Each year over 56,000 Americans are diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, whose 5-year survival rate is 5%.  Older individuals who are healthy can do as well as those who are younger when diagnosed with advanced stage of the disease.  However some sources cite the median survival time is between 2 and 6 months if the cancer is diagnosed at a late stage.

What are the risk factors for pancreatic cancer?

Known risk factors for pancreatic cancer include:

  • Older individuals
  • Male (though women are affected as well)
  • Diabetes
  • Alcohol use
  • Chronic pancreatitis
  • Genetics
  • African-American descent
  • Ashkenazi Jewish descent
  • Obesity
  • High fat diet
  • Hepatitis B
  • H. pylori infection
  • BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutations
    Can Diet Soda CAUSE Diabetes?

Artificial sweeteners have been linked to diabetes and diabetes is a risk factor for pancreatic cancer.  Their relationship to pancreatic cancer, however, still remains controversial.

 

ultimate book cover final

Great Gift!!!

The Ultimate Medical Student HandBook

 

Daliah Wachs, MD, FAAFP is a nationally syndicated radio personality on GCN Network, KDWN, and iHeart Radio.

Posted in Blood, Health, news

Governor Proclamations for National Blood Donation Week 2019

National Blood Donation Week (NBDW) unites states across the US to support their local blood banks and their tireless effort to keep blood supply stocked.  This year, National Blood Donation Week is September 2-9th with National Blood Donation Day September 5th.

us drop

The following states have proclaimed September 5th their State Blood Donation Day and their proclamations are below:

 

  • Alabama
  • Arkansas
  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • Georgia
  • Florida
  • Idaho
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Kansas
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • Nebraska
  • Nevada
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Pennsylvania
  • Rhode Island
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Utah
  • Vermont
  • Virginia
  • Washington
  • West Virginia
  • Wisconsin
  • Wyoming

Arizona has proclaimed September 2-9th Arizona Blood Donation Week

…….with more to come.

Kansas 2019 proclamation.jpg

 

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North Dakota 2019 proc.jpg

 

New Jersey 2019 proc.jpg

 

Ohio 2019 Proc.jpg

 

 

North Carolina 2019.jpg

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Wisconsin 2019 proc.jpg

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Rhode Island 2019 proc.jpg

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Maryland 2019 procMaine 2019 proc

Florida 2019 proc

 

Georgia 2019 proc.jpgIndiana 2019 procmichigan 2019 procmissouri 2019 procArizona Blood Donation Week 2019montana 2019 procNew Hampshire 2019 procTennessee 2019 proc

 

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West Virginia 2019 procWyoming 2019 procPennsylvania 2019 proc

Arkansas 2019 proc

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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