Thursday, July 19, 2012

Many men with prostate cancer can avoid early surgery

New research suggests that many men with prostate cancer do not need immediate treatment, especially if they have low PSA scores or low-risk tumors that are unlikely to grow and spread. The multi-center study, published July 18 in the New England Journal of Medicine, compared prostate cancer surgery soon after diagnosis to observation in men with early-stage prostate tumors detected by PSA screening. 

Overall, most men did not benefit from surgery – it did not reduce the likelihood they would die from prostate cancer or other causes. But the findings indicate that surgery did reduce mortality in two groups of men – those with relatively high PSA levels (greater than 10 ng/mL) and potentially those with higher-risk, more aggressive tumors.  

“For most men with low-risk prostate cancer, there is no evidence they need immediate treatment,” says study co-author Gerald Andriole, MD, chief of urologic surgery at the Siteman Cancer Center at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. “But the data suggest that men with high PSA levels and those with more aggressive tumors likely benefit from early surgery, and these men should undergo treatment because their tumors are more likely to be lethal if left alone.”

Read more at:

Friday, July 13, 2012

What's in Your Beef? A Lot of Antibiotics.

Last week, Congresswoman Louise Slaughter of New York released the resultsfrom a survey of over 60 fast food, retail, production and grocery companies asking them about their policies on the use of antibiotics in meat and poultry production. The goal of the survey was to evaluate their level of transparency about antibiotic use and to reveal to consumers the extent to which antibiotics are used in their food.
“Through my survey, the food industry has provided us valuable information, and with that knowledge we must act,” said Rep. Slaughter in a press release. “I urge consumers to consider today’s findings when shopping, and I urge the FDA and my colleagues in Congress to strengthen our laws in order to fight the growing threat of superbugs. Until we do, the routine use of antibiotics will continue to breed antibiotic-resistant bacteria that threaten human health.”
Findings indicate that the majority of companies surveyed regularly feed antibiotics to their healthy animals to prevent illness and to promote faster animal growth.  This overuse of antibiotics has been found to result in an increase in “superbugs,” bacteria resistant to one or more antibiotics.