June, 2011

Shout-out: Firework Safety Review

Fireworks are beautiful - but care and safety are needed to avoid burns and injuries. Dr. Ramona Bates, from the suture for a living blog, has written an nice review piece about how to safely deal with fireworks. The link is below. It's especially timely with the July 4 holiday fast approaching. Please read it, and explain it to your kids & teenagers. Nobody wants burns or eye injuries, after all! Firework Safety Review Have a wonderful 4th! photo credit : digital-photography-school.com. A p...

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Thomas Fiala, MD 6/30/2011 Comments(0)

OT: airport scanners in the news

When traveling, I've often wondered why the TSA agents don't wear the little dosimetry badges that all medical and dental personnel who work around X-rays wear on their lapels. It's a standard safety precaution in the industry, another method of ensuring that medical personnel aren't inadvertently getting exposed to too much radiation at work. Well, here's an article from TIME magazine on this very topic. It turns out that a few TSA agents in Boston have developed various cancers, and they're wo...

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Thomas Fiala, MD 6/30/2011 Comments(0)

FDA update on breast implants - 2011

When the FDA re-approved silicone breast implants for general use, back in November of 2006, one of the conditions was that the two major manufacturers and the FDA would co-operate to do some ongoing follow-up studies about implant safety and effectiveness. Now, approximately 5 years later, the FDA has released an update, discussing the first installment of this data. In a nutshell: it confirms what we knew 5 years ago. Implants, when used correctly, are safe devices...but they're not perfect. T...

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Thomas Fiala, MD 6/25/2011 Comments(0)

Spray-on skin grafts?

Here's a cool new idea: spray-on skin grafts . Using the ReCell kit, a small skin biopsy is processed, turning the sliver of skin into a suspension of cells. This takes about 30 minutes. The resulting liquid is then sprayed onto the area of second-degree burns. And here's a bonus: you can cover a much bigger area with this method, compared to the size of the initial skin sample. For example, the developer, Dr. Fiona Wood from Australia, says she has been able to use a piece of skin the size of a...

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Thomas Fiala, MD 6/19/2011 Comments(1)

New FDA rules for sunscreens

This week, the FDA announced a series of changes that will affect how sunscreens are labelled. This is a good thing for consumers: the manufacturers will have to be very clear about whether the product products against UVA rays, or the more typical UVB. Misleading terms like "sunblock" and "waterproof" are going to be eliminated. Just so you know: there is no sunscreen yet invented that is totally waterproof, or is a 100% sunblock. These are BS marketing terms. Under the new labeling system, whi...

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Thomas Fiala, MD 6/17/2011 Comments(0)

Novel melanoma drug 'dramatic'

Source: Dermatology Times E-News A new study reveals dramatic results for an experimental drug designed to attack a melanoma tumor’s genetic trigger in patients with advanced disease. About half of melanoma patients’ tumors carry a mutation of the BRAF gene, which causes skin cells to reproduce out of control. The experimental drug, called PLX4032 or vemurafenib, reverses the effects of that mutation. The new study, led by Paul Chapman, M.D., of New York’s Memorial Sloan-Ketter...

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Thomas Fiala, MD 6/16/2011 Comments(0)

OT: Would you give a 7 year old this?

More bizarre parenting, this time from the UK. Plastic-surgery obsessed mom gives daughter a voucher for breast augmentation...but she's only SEVEN. Here's the story, from the Daily Mail : ******** She made the headlines last year when she confessed to teaching her then six-year-old daughter Poppy to pole dance. And now Sarah Burge is back in the spotlight again - for all the wrong reasons. The 50-year-old mother - a self-confessed plastic surgery addict known as The Human Barbie - has boasted t...

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Thomas Fiala, MD 6/10/2011 Comments(0)

"SPY" Imaging system for flap surgery

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Thomas Fiala, MD 6/7/2011 Comments(0)

Medication reduces breast cancer risk in postmenopausal women

The drug Aromasin appears to cut the odds of breast cancer by 65 percent in high-risk postmenopausal women, new research has found. Unlike other anti-estrogen drugs like tamoxifen, Aromasin doesn't seem to have an increased risk of uterine cancer or blood clots. Aromasin, an aromatase inhibitor, is currently approved for early breast cancer patients, but is not FDA approved as a preventative medication. Currently, the medication costs $300-400 per month, but will soon be available in generic for...

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Thomas Fiala, MD 6/4/2011 Comments(0)

Bye-bye "Food Pyramid". Hello "MyPlate"!

Say goodbye to the USDA Food Pyramid. The Pyramid, introduced in 1992, has been replaced by a simpler new graphic, the Plate. It's a lot simpler, and easier to understand. There's less emphasis on grains, and more emphasis on fruits and vegetables, which now make up one-half of the plate. It's all part of the USDA's new "Dietary Guidelines 2010" program. Other key messages from the program include: - Balancing Calories ● Enjoy your food, but eat less. ● Avoid oversized portions. - Fo...

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Thomas Fiala, MD 6/2/2011 Comments(0)

Clever public service announcement about the dangers of tanning

"You look great in leather!" I see that leathery sun-damaged skin too often, here in sun-drenched Florida! And it's hard to fix! In all seriousness, though, here are some tips about how to preserve your skin from sun damage and avoid skin cancers , from skincancer.org - Seek the shade, especially between 10 AM and 4 PM. - Do not burn. - Avoid tanning and UV tanning booths. - Cover up with clothing, including a broad-brimmed hat and UV-blocking sunglasses. - Use a broad spectrum UVA/UVB sunscreen...

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Thomas Fiala, MD 6/1/2011 Comments(0)

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