Botox Injections Have Benefit for Chronic Headaches

A new review and analysis of previous studies has found that botulinum toxin A (“Botox”) injections have a small to modest benefit for those with chronic migraine headaches and chronic daily headache. Botulinum toxin A injections were first proposed as headache treatment when it was observed that patients with chronic headaches receiving cosmetic botulinum injections experienced headache improvement, prompting several case series that suggested benefit. Jeffrey L. Jackson, M.D., M.P.H., of the Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, and colleagues performed a review and meta-analysis to assess the association of botulinum toxin A with reducing headache frequency when used for preventive treatment of migraine, tension, or chronic daily headaches in adults. In the study, headaches were categorized as episodic (less than 15 headaches per month) or chronic (15 or more headaches per month) migraine and episodic or chronic daily or tension headaches. A total of  27 randomized placebo-controlled trials which included 5,313 study participants and 4 randomized comparisons with other medications were included in the study. Pooled analyses of the data suggested that botulinum toxin A was associated with fewer headaches per month among patients with chronic daily headaches (1,115 patients, -2.06 headaches per month) and among patients with chronic migraine […]

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Reconsideration of decision making for third molar extraction

An article recently appeared in the Journal of the Korean Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery titled “Reconsideration of decision making for third molar extraction, “(vol. 37, pages  343-348, 2011) by Wonse Park and et al. I am unable to read the article since it is in Korean but the abstract is in English. The introduction of the article states “Third molar extraction is one of the most common procedures in oral and maxillofacial surgery. The impacted third molar causes many pathological conditions, such as pericoronitis, caries, periodontitis, resorption of adjacent teeth, and cyst or tumors associated with impacted teeth. Extraction is often considered the treatment of choice for impacted lower third molars. On the other hand, imprudent extraction of deeply impacted third molars can cause permanent complications, such as inferior alveolar nerve damage. Therefore, guidelines for the extraction of lower third molars should be set to prevent embarrassing complications.” I state various reasons to remove wisdom teeth on my website over at http://www.teethremoval.com/wisdomteeth.html. I also state complications that can happen from removal of wisdom teeth over at http://www.teethremoval.com/complications.html. The study examined 557 extracted third molars of which 40.8% were asymptomatic. In this study 177 of the 557 third molars […]

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The Body Fights Gum Disease Better When You Are Not Fat

An interesting study was conducted by researchers at Case Western Reserve University School of Dental Medicine. The study included 31 obese people with gum disease. Half of those in the group with an average BMI of 39 had gastric bypass surgery and had had fat cells from the abdomen removed. This half did better than a control group of people with an average BMI of 35 who did not have gastric bypass surgery or had fat removed. It was stated that “All study participants underwent nonsurgical periodontal treatments of scaling/root planing and oral hygiene instructions for home care. While both groups showed improvement, the surgery group did even better on the measures for periodontal attachment, bleeding, probing depths and plaque levels.” Periodontal disease is a potential risk of keeping wisdom teeth and is discussed in more detail over at http://www.teethremoval.com/risks_of_keeping_wisdom_teeth.html. Periodontal disease has been found to be associated with numerous systemic diseases. The researchers in the study came up with 2 different hypotheses about why the surgery group did better than the control group. The first theory was that fat cells secrete more cytokines such as TNF and IL-6 which can cause insulin to be more resistant to properly function. Hence losing weight causes insulin to […]

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Should There Be a Direct-to-Consumer Pharmaceutical Advertising Ban

An interesting article is written by Lia Mulligan titled “You Can’t Say That on Television: Constitutional Analysis of a Direct-to-Consumer Pharmaceutical Advertising Ban,” which appeared in the 2011 issue of the American Journal of Law and Medicine (vol. 37, pages 444-467). In the article it is mentioned that the average american will watch around 16 hours of pharmaceutical advertisements on TV a year. As mentioned I believe before on this blog the U.S. and New Zealand are the only 2 countries in the world that even allow direct to consumer pharmaceutical advertising (DTCA). I personally do not like this type of advertising and neither do some of my friends. We often make fun of the advertisements when they come on TV as they sometimes can be quite silly. The article mentions in 1969 when the FDA first issued regulations for DTCA there were four main principles that had to be followed truthful information that does not mislead the public in any way a balance of both risks and benefits of the advertised product relevant, material information about the product that relates to its intended uses every risk associated with the advertised product’s use As you can imagine every risk associated […]

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Industry Bias in Biomedical Science

An interesting article written by Christopher T. Robertson titled “The Money Blind: How to Stop Industry Bias in Biomedical Science, Without Violating the First Amendment,” appears in the American Journal of Law and Medicine (vol. 37, pages 358-387, 2011). The article discuses how the medical industry spends billions of dollars to create innovative products but also spends nearly as much to change the behavior patterns of those interested to make sure the products are purchased. The author states “As a veteran of the industry writes, ‘ in the pharmaeeutieal industry, there are two ways to market an approved drug for a new use: the ‘indication’ route—performing studies necessary for regulatory approval—or the ‘publication’ strategy, whieh stimulates off-label prescribing by using research ‘to disseminate the information as widely as possible through the world’s medical literature.’ “ A mention is made of a candid document by Pfizer which states “What is the purpose of publications? The answer: the ‘purpose of data is to support, directly or indirectly, the marketing of our product.’ Or in short: “Purpose of Publications: The Bottom Line.’ “ The author mentions a quote by a judge “The pervasive commercial bias found in today’s research laboratories means studies are often lacking in essential objectivity, with the potential for misinformation, skewed results, or cover-ups.” The […]

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