Friday, June 27, 2008

Differing Approaches To Achieving Wellness

Everyone wants to achieve a state of better health and wellness. There are medications, treatments, exercises, shows, and books dedicated to helping people get to this proposed state. However, there is something that is being ignored amidst all this. This is something important, I think. In fact, it is probably more important than any of the advice or techniques about achieving wellness. You see, this thing is a question that people don’t seem to be answering. If they are answering it, the answer either isn’t very clear or conflicts with what everyone else seems to think the answer is. No, I’m not talking about life itself. Everyone knows life means ’42.’ What I’m talking about is what does it actually mean to “achieve wellness?”

Most of the medical establishment tends to recapitulate the same words and phrases that comprise that is seen to be standard wisdom for achieving wellness. Watch your diet. Exercise regularly and properly. Drop the extra pounds that you have. Quit smoking. Have your body screened regularly for various dire illnesses so you can avoid problems early on. Keep your blood sugar and cholesterol levels as low as you can. Keep in touch with your primary medical provider, and have any aches and pains checked out – they might be signs of even worse problems. These things are what the medical establishment wants you to remember; these are the things they saw will help you achieve wellness and better physical health. Still, there are those who choose to dissent – and some of them are from the medical community itself.

According to a certain Dr. Hadler, all the fitness and health in the world can’t undo one simple fact: we’re all going to die. No, he doesn’t have a skull decorating his desk, but that would add a touch of visual confirmation of his view. He says that all the good stuff in the world isn’t going to do much help against the ravages of time and aging. There is no way to hold off every dire illness in existence at bay for eternity, much less something as unstoppable as time. The fact is, permanent wellness is simply impossible to achieve – it isn’t even a real option. He says that the real goal should be reaching a ripe, venerable age with most of one’s core physical abilities still largely intact – no loss of hearing, sight, bodily functions, and the like. He also says that if you want to achieve that long-term goal, ignoring the medical establishment is the easiest way to do it.

The fun part is that both these sets of advice are from people in the medical establishment. That simple little detail means that they both have a rather large degree of credibility. The question becomes which one is really the more accurate one. That isn’t so easy, because on one hand, Hadler is right in saying that you’re going to die eventually, so delaying it shouldn’t even be considered an option. On the other, nobody really wants to die and doing a lot of healthy things can not only delay death, but also decrease the risk of dying in certain ways.

Resource Box : Harvey Ong is a part-time writer and a part-time researcher. He is currently self- studying various Far Eastern languages and is an avid fiction reader. He is currently writing articles oriented towards consumers of pharmaceutical products, but has written about used car loans, gambling and casino strategies, and overseas travel in the past.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Old Drug, New (Cancerous) Horizons

Competition, they say, is one of the reasons for innovation and development. So long as one group isn’t trying to sabotage the other and is legitimately working on their project, things should go fine. This has been applied to everything from business to weapons development, and it has worked. So really, you and I should not be shocked to learn that something like this is going on in the twisted little world we know as medicinal research. The way most pharmaceutical and medical research companies go about their business is highly driven by competition – the urge to get the product out and start raking in the profits for it. Only in rare situations will the competitive nature of the game actually make two companies meet in battle at one of the biggest cancer conferences in the world and both leave standing tall.

Incidentally, this is also good news for cancer patients.

You see, data presented at the aforementioned conference is predicted to boost the sales of a drug called Erbitux. The drug, developed and sold by ImClone Systems, is expected to see increased use as an initial medication for patients that have advanced cases of lung and colorectal cancers, thanks to this data. However, others believe that this increase in revenue might come at the cost of the drug Avastin. Avastin, made by a company known as Genentech, has long been used as the frontline pharmaceutical treatment for the cancers previously mentioned. Still, most analysts of the industry and the doctors working the hospitals believe that the growth of one drug does not necessarily have to be the thing that kills the other.

Supposedly, the view these doctors have is that the data doesn’t hold enough clinical merit to take market share away from the established Avastin.

Both of these medications were designed to target a specific type of therapy. They’re supposed to help in blocking the mechanisms that are responsible for the growth of the cells in a tumor. Avastin has long been seen as the primary medication of this type, with more than double the sales of its closest rival, Erbitux. Still, the two drugs do have a number of differences that kept them largely away from each other’s market shares. Avastin, if I’m recalling this right, was used in advanced colorectal cancer – with some patient using it for lung and breast cancer, too. Erbitux, up until now, was approved for use as a treatment for colon cancer of the last resort variety – which means that it could only be given to a patient if all else fails. Head and neck cancer are not alien to the drug, either.

Still, the information does prove interesting to look at. Data showed that patients with certain genetic triggers and mutations in their tumors did not react to Erbitux. Most of the patients don’t have the mutation in their tumors, and they showed remarkable levels of improvement in their colorectal cancer after being given the drug. Regulators in Europe are considering approving it, but only for patients that don’t have mutant tumors rampantly growing inside them.

Resource Box : Harvey Ong is a part-time researcher, with special interest in the occult, medical anomalies, herbal lore, and psychology. He is also employed as a writer- researcher, researching and writing articles about a variety of pain killers, muscle relaxants, sexual health medications, and psychoactive drugs.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Stem Cells Might Fix Neurological Problems In Children

The Catholic Church would have you think that anything involving these things would be tantamount to selling your soul, your children’s souls, and your children’s children’s souls to the devil himself. All for the price of a shiny nickel, at that. Medical science would have you thinking otherwise. Medical science claims that the cells might be the key to curing a number of conditions, and providing treatment for some of the most lethal conditions known to man. The science behind it is sound, but the Church is opposed to it because of the supposed price tag: human embryos.

Now, we’re not going to get ourselves into the ridiculous debate about whether or not an embryo is alive or is just a bunch of cells (I personally take the latter side, but that’s beside the point) here. We are, however, going to delve into the latest development along the scientific front of this argument, because let’s face it, even if stem cells cure cancer, the Church is going to stay the Church and renounce it as “the devil’s work,” like they’ve been doing to various scientific achievements since the Dark Ages.

The latest development involves sticking embryonic stem cells into the brains of mice. Why is this a major development, oh wise and all-knowing guru, you may ask? I’ll tell you, and I won’t even charge you $300 for it, like a certain group that claims to be a religion but is actually a sham. You see, scientists stuck a few of the cells into the brains of mice. Now, these injected mice were all suffering from a neurological condition that, oddly enough, is something that human children suffer from. Okay, the conditions are eerily similar, but they’re not exact replicas of one another. Anyway, that’s not the point. The point is this: the mice recovered.

That’s right, the mice recovered from debilitating neurological conditions that would have otherwise left them mentally handicapped for the rest of their lives. Well, as mentally handicapped as can be recognized in mice, at least. The fact that some of these mice recovered has put up a lot of hope for the same technique being used to fix similar conditions in human children. As soon as science works all the problems out and figures out why other lab rats ended up dead anyway.

The core idea of the treatment is fixing the defective wires running though the brain and spinal cord. This means that the broken ones will either need to be repaired or replaced. The human body is largely capable of regenerating any sort of cell, even brain cells and neurons. However, some conditions can make that task either too slow to do any good, or completely shut it down. Besides, a lot of damage can be done while the body is working to fix itself. The stem cells are triggered to become the appropriate cells to conduct repairs, which is generally a lot faster than waiting for the body to generate new cells on its own.

By:Harvey Ong