Alternative Medicine

Treatment Options for Prostate Cancer

Posted by Alternative Medicine on September 18, 2014 in Cancer, Health with No Comments

This is an area that is the subject of ongoing research. There are a number of treatment options that can be taken singly or sometimes in combination. All of these treatments have pluses and minuses. It is important to inform yourself fully about all the options, including the option of‘watchful waiting’, i.e. simply keeping an eye on your prostate. This can be a very reasonable option as many men with prostate cancer do not have aggressive forms of the condition and their condition grows so slowly that no active treatment is needed.

The decision to have active treatment and which type of treatment to undergo is an important decision that you should take in conjunction with your specialist, as side effects from these treatments by Viagra Australia can be significant. Surgery, radiotherapy and hormone therapy all have different side effects that need to be considered. These side effects include urinary incontinence, reduced ejaculation, lowered sex drive and long-term impotence, as well as hot flushes, tiredness and sweats.

Options include surgery, radiotherapy, hormone therapy or a combination of these treatments:

  • Surgical removal of the entire prostate is known as a ‘radical prostatectomy’. Complications from this can include impotence and urinary incontinence.
  • Radiotherapy can include either external beam radiotherapy, where the prostate is irradiated from outside the body, or more recently an option of placing small radioactive seeds into the prostate, which irradiate it from the inside out.
  • Hormone treatment can lower the testosterone levels (this is like giving the patient the male menopause). Drugs can be used to lower the level of testosterone in the blood, which has the effect of slowing or stopping the growth of the cancerous tumour. However, some prostate tumours develop the ability to grow without testosterone.

Research is ongoing into other potential treatments for prostate cancer. One such option may be a new drug called abiraterone. Early research suggests that this drug can shrink the prostate in men with prostate cancer. Large scale trials will be needed comparing this treatment to established treatment options to see if it really is a step forward.

Key Points

  • The prostate is an important gland for a man’s sexual health.
  • Many men lack knowledge and information about the prostate gland.
  • Disorders of the prostate gland, especially benign enlargement (BPH), are common, especially as men get older.
  • Be aware of the symptoms of prostate problems. Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men and is on the increase.
  • Often this cancer can be very slow-growing and difficult to diagnose.
  • The PSA blood test, when raised, can be an early marker of prostate cancer.
  • At present the jury is still out on the benefits of screening for prostate cancer.
  • Stay informed about your prostate health and discuss this issue with your doctor.

Is All Exercise the Same?

Posted by Alternative Medicine on September 16, 2014 in Health with No Comments

Weight or Strength Training

Weight training is very important for keeping our muscles and bones strong and healthy. As we get older, this becomes particularly important for upper body strength, which tends to naturally decline with age. Bodybuilding is not the aim. Two 15-minute sessions spaced out during the week are ideal. Put the emphasis on doing comfortable repetitions of low weights rather than going for broke on the Olympic bar. Press-ups are an excellent exercise for upper body strength. As with other forms of exercise, it is important not to overdo it. Listen to your own body and know the difference between a little bit of exercise-induced stiffness and the soreness that can come from an injury.

Flexibility Exercises

Stretching should be an essential part of any exercise programme, as it helps to keep the body loose and prevent injury. Working on and improving flexibility is also an important part of any rehabilitation programme after an injury. Exercises to strengthen the lower back and stomach muscles, often called core stabilisation exercises, are now recognised as being very important in injury prevention.

Stretching is also a great way to relax and unwind. The best stretching routine is the one that works best for you. Your doctor or physiotherapist can help you plan a specific programme for your needs.

There is a much greater emphasis on incorporating a more holistic approach to healthcare today. This can be seen by the increasing popularity of yoga, Pilates and tai chi. Personally I have been impressed by some elderly patients who practise yoga, especially with regard to their degree of flexibility and suppleness. Don’t assume that yoga and Pilates are for women only, men can get the same health benefits from these activities.

How Much Exercise is Enough?

We were born to exercise. Primitive man was a hunter and gatherer and may have run many miles on a daily basis, gathering berries and escaping the clutches of lions and other wild beasts. However, this hunter-gatherer role has diminished as society has modernised, and now modern man can often spend his day sitting at a desk, behind a wheel of a car or slouched in front of a computer or TV screen. Of course this doesn’t describe all of us, but you get the picture. We need to be much more proactive about taking exercise. It is felt that we need at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise daily or on most days of the week, i.e. 210 minutes per week. This is what is needed to keep our hearts, bodies and minds healthy Viagra online. Moderate exercise means that you should get warm, but you don’t have to sweat.

Know Your Numbers

  • 30 minutes/day on most days (at least 5 times per week) or
  • 210 minutes/week of moderate exercise
  • 45-60 minutes/day if overweight or at risk of obesity
  • 60-90 minutes/day if obese
  • 10,000 steps equates to 5 miles/8 kilometres

Restoration of fertility

Posted by Alternative Medicine on September 9, 2014 in Health with No Comments

Follicle culture

Any culture strategy designed to support the complete IVG of oocytes and follicles from cryopreserved tissues must mimic the sequence of events and cellular checkpoints that the follicles and oocytes would normally be exposed to in vivo. The growth rates, cell–cell signalling and metabolic turnover of follicles and oocytes grown in vitro must correspond to the parameters of similar cells grown to maturity in the body nolvadex canada. During their extended growth phase, oocytes progressively synthesize and accumulate the payload of proteins and acids (RNAs), which are required to support production of a fertile gamete and the preimplantation development of the early embryo. Furthermore, there are stage-specific changes in genomic imprinting during oocyte growth in vivo that must be replicated in oocytes grown in vitro.

Despite these stringent biological requirements, significant advances have been made in IVG technologies. Encouraging results have been obtained in laboratory species. In contrast, progress in IVG in large animals and humans is far slower than that observed in rodents, as ruminant and human oocytes are much larger eggs, which take many months to acquire their fertile potential. Nevertheless, in both sheep and humans it is now possible to: initiate and maintain primordial follicle growth over extended periods; induce antral cavity formation in preantral follicles; induce appropriate levels of steroid biosynthesis after provision of suitable substrates. Importantly, extensive validation studies carried out on isolated sheep follicles have revealed that IVG can be achieved with equal efficiency using both fresh and cryopreserved tissue. Electron microscopy has also shown that the in vitro-grown cells have a similar morphology to oocytes and follicles grown in vivo. Further advances in IVG technology will soon enable us to determine if the oocytes derived following cryopreservation and IVG of human ovarian cortex are healthy and fertile.

Loss of ovarian function and reduction of fertile potential in young patients can be combated by the development of strategies to quantify the risk of ovarian damage, to protect the gonads from the destructive effects of medical treatments and, in extreme cases, to cryopreserve fertility. Advances in fertility preservation methods for young patients will inevitably be dependent on the development of an improved understanding of the effects on the ovary of contemporary treatments, as exposure to cytotoxic agents is frequently unavoidable prior to a window of safety being available for oocyte and ovarian tissue harvesting. Furthermore, the development of a safe clinical strategy to preserve the fertility of all young patients, irrespective of diagnosis, has to be based around high-quality basic research into the biology and technology of oocyte and ovarian tissue cryopreservation and its safe and cheap viagra canada online  and efficient use to restore fertility. Future research topics are therefore likely to include: development of new diagnostics to test the gonadotoxicity of treatments such as those offered to cancer patients; development of accurate methods to predict the lifespan of autografts; determination of the optimum location of autografts; assessment of the impact of patient age on the efficiency of the freezing, thawing and grafting or IVG processes; quantification of the consequences of prior exposure to chemo- or radiotherapies; and evaluation of the normality of uterine function and the contribution of the uterus to implantation post-treatment.