Entries by Janet

Gout Hates Your Joints

If an illness can have a stereotype, gout has one: its poster boy is a portly, wealthy gentleman who drinks too much red wine and eats too much rich food. In literature, gout is an Epicurean affliction, the runoff of opulence and “disease of kings.” In fact, gout attacks the poor as well as the […]

Policy Change on PSA Screening: A Step Back in the Right Direction

American men need a baseline PSA test and rectal exam to check for prostate cancer in their forties, and then they need follow-up screening at regular intervals – maybe every five years, if the PSA number is low and nothing feels abnormal in the exam, or maybe more often, depending on the number. Men who […]

How RA Begins: A Detective Story

What causes rheumatoid arthritis? The search, by scientists around the world, has been exhaustive, and the prey surprisingly elusive – but in breakthrough Johns Hopkins research, scientists Maximilian Konig, M.D., and Felipe Andrade, M.D., Ph.D., believe they have pinpointed one culprit: a kind of bacteria that lives in the mouth and is present in gum […]

Hope for the Future:  An Engineered Bladder 

“Tissue engineering is the ultimate in reconstruction,” says David McConkey, Ph.D., Director of the Greenberg Bladder Cancer Institute at Johns Hopkins, “and we have a fantastic team” working to create a new bladder out of a patient’s own cells. Using a scaffold to layer stem cells and similarly “plastic” cells called progenitor cells – kind […]

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Healthy and Over 75? Keep Getting Screened for Prostate Cancer

We are living longer, and 75 is not the ripe old age it used to be.  But it’s a cutoff age for PSA screening – and this is missing cancer in men who really need to be treated, say Brady investigators.  “There is increasing evidence that this age-based approach is significantly flawed,” says Johns Hopkins […]

New Marijuana Studies: Pot Hurts Your Brain

Before we start this discussion, please hear these words:  this is not about your right to smoke marijuana.  I don’t care if you spend every waking moment high as a kite, as long as you don’t operate heavy machinery or endanger anyone else.  I do not care.  That’s not my business. However, I’m worried about […]

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Prostate Cancer and Your Genes

If your mom had breast cancer, that could raise your risk for prostate cancer.  If you have aggressive prostate cancer, your daughter might be at higher risk for ovarian or breast cancer.  Some “bad apple” genes run in families; doctors know what they are, and there’s a blood test to look for them. For the […]