Archive | December, 2008

Doctor Shortage

Many recent studies point to the fact that in several years from now the United States will be faced with a doctor shortage. This will specifically affect primary care doctors. These are the doctors you see when you are feeling or having something wrong with you in a general sense. They help guide you towards finding a specialist and aiding in preventative measures. The American Medical Association has said it will support through financial incentives medical students who choose to go into primary care. However,  medical students feel the paperwork and charting required of primary care physicians is very tedious and difficult when the system is not built to treat chronically ill patients. President-elect Barack Obama will have a tough time charting through the teritory of making sure there are enough doctors to the people that need this. This will be crucial in the future and is a necessary issue that needs to be addressed by those supporting health changes. For more information read “Where Have All the Doctors Gone?”by the New York Times

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Antidepressants Linked with TrkB-mediated Neural Proliferation

Scientists have unveiled a functional link between production of new neurons and the effectiveness of antidepressants (ADs) in an animal model. The study provides exciting insight into a mechanism that might underlie a poor response to antidepressive medications for anxiety or depression. Depression is a significant public health problem due to both its high prevalence and its devastating impact on individuals and society,” says senior author Dr. Luis F. Parada from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. “Despite much excitement generated by recent advances in the knowledge of brain development and function, the mechanisms underlying the pathogenesis of depression, as well as its amelioration by AD treatment, remain poorly understood.” Animal studies have indicated that chronic treatment with ADs leads to production of new neurons in a part of the brain called the hippocampus. Exercise, such as running, which has a documented positive impact on mental health, also stimulates hippocampal neurogenesis. In both cases, new neurons arise from neural progenitor cells (NPCs) that seem to be required for the behavioral response to ADs. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is increased in the hippocampus after chronic AD treatment, has been linked with AD-like responses in several behavioral paradigms, and promotes proliferation […]

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Pain, Nerve Blocks, and Prolotherapy

Both videos are by Dr. Marc Darrow. The first video addresses nerve blocks, complications, and how they affect chronic pain. The second video addressing prolotherapy which is the natural ability of the body to produce more collagen. Chronic Pain: Pain Management: Prolotherapy

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Tools for Bloggers

Yesterday, I ran into a post on about AutoFilling Comment forms. easyComment is the name of the tool and it is a firefox plugin. What you do is fill in the typical entry forms when you make a comment on a blog include name, email, and website. You then save this information. Now anytime you are on a blog and ready to make a comment, you simply click the easy comment tab in the bottom of your firefox browser. Andy Beal, over at recently came out with his list of the best 21 WordPress plugins. Anyone who has a blog should take a look at his list. There are some real winners on his list and I am using some of the plugins he recommends on this blog. I was inspired to add Math Comment Spam to this blog after reading the list. Matthew Diehl has created a download which includes the current latest version (Dec 19, 2008) of all of the plugins Beal recommends to make it convienent for anyone looking to download them.

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Exercise Makes you Less Hungry

A new study looks at the effects of exercise on reducing one’s appetite. There are several hormones that help regulate appetite, but the in a study attention was payed to ghrelin and peptide YY. Ghrelin is the only hormone known to stimulate appetite whereas, peptide YY suppresses appetite. In the study, eleven male  students did three eight-hour sessions. During one session they ran for 60 minutes on a treadmill, and then rested for seven hours. During another session they did 90 minutes of weight lifting, and then rested for six hours and 30 minutes. During another session, the participants did not exercise at all. The participants filled out surveys indicating how hungry they felt. The researchers measured ghrelin and peptide YY levels at multiple points along the way. It was found that the treadmill activity caused ghrelin levels to drop and peptide YY levels to increase. However,  weight-lifting  produced a mixed result. Ghrelin levels dropped, yet peptide YY levels did not change significantly. Both aerobic and resistance exercise suppressed hunger, but aerobic exercise (treadmill) produced a greater suppression of hunger. The changes the researchers observed were short term for both types of exercise and only lasted for 2 hours. While […]

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