Archive for December, 2010

Cancer Treatments Getting Cheaper

December 31, 2010

Cancer treatments that normally come with a huge bill could soon include a new type of treatment that could possibly be as effective as it is inexpensive. Researchers have been trying to make a material using nanoparticles that could be so sensitive that doctors would be able to use our breath to detect indicators cancer, diabetes, and other important illnesses in real time.
Breath-analyzers detect changes in the conductance of gases like our breath as it passes over sensors. The things that cause changes in the sensors would be “biomarkers”, or substances that are typically warning signs of the illnesses named above plus other conditions as well. Scientists from the National Institute of Standards and also at Purdue University told CNET that although breath-analyzers have been around, this would be the first time someone has come up with a sensitivity level that could be efficient. It was done by trying to increase the surface area of the sensor, and replacing a flat surface with some material that made an incredibly porous metal-oxide film. According to NIST and Purdue University, the main element allowing this was due to using a coating of metal-oxide nanoparticles that allowed tons of things to be involved. Doing this, researchers now can run better studies because the sensitivity level increases along with the actual active part of the surface. Read more…

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Lung Cancer Screening Can Be Effective

December 30, 2010

Lung cancer screening using computed tomography (CT) scans can be effective in high risk populations if it follows a strict clinical protocol supported by a multidisciplinary care team.
This conclusion is drawn after conducting a clinical trial in a high-risk local population with rates of histoplasmosis three times higher than the national average. Read more…

On-the-spot cancer report

December 29, 2010

Breath sensor could offer on-the-spot cancer report.
Researchers say they’ve used nanoparticles to create a material sensitive enough to analyze a patient’s breath in real time and detect indicators of cancer, diabetes, and other diseases.
Diagnostic breath-analysis tools have been around for several decades, this is the first time a material has been developed that’s sensitive enough to deliver on-the-spot results.Read more…

Cancer Patients Could Keep Hair

December 28, 2010

Tests are underway on a new device that some doctors think will prevent cancer patients from losing their hair during chemotherapy.
The idea that cooling the head would prevent hair loss has been batted around in scientific circles for decades. A few such devices have been tested over the years and none has completely stopped hair loss or was successful in all people.Read more…

Scientists use nanotechnology to fight cancer

December 27, 2010

Scientists are designing treatment plans and medicines by using nanotechnology to fight cancer.
Nanotechnology allows doctors to “improve the quality and effectiveness of medicines and use a treatment that is more effective, but less invasive and toxic”. Read more…

New potential target for breast cancer therapy identified

December 24, 2010

Overexpression or hyperactivation of ErbB cell-surface receptors drives the growth of many breast cancers. Drugs, like Herceptin, that block the receptors’ signals halt tumor progression in some patients.
However, not all patients’ tumors respond, with some becoming resistant over time. Different drugs that interfere with other steps in the signaling pathway may improve the response of patients, yet little is known about these molecules.Read more…

Smoking worsens cancer patients’ pain

December 23, 2010

Cancer patients who continue to smoke despite their diagnosis experience greater pain than nonsmokers.Investigators surveyed 224 patients with a range of cancer diagnoses.
Patients completed self-report measures of pain severity, pain-related distress, and pain-related interference, as well as a demographics questionnaire. Read more…

New lease of life for Oman girl

December 22, 2010

Mariam, a three-and-a-half-year-old baby from Oman was suffering from leukaemia and only a bone marrow transplant could save her. Though her eight-year-old brother Abdullah was the donor, they had to travel all the way to Bengaluru for the advanced facilities and treatment options available here.
The bone marrow transplant from one sibling to another was successfully done about 10 days ago at a city hospital and Mariam has now been shifted to a ward.Read more…

Growth opportunities for India medical electronics

December 21, 2010

India Semiconductor Association (ISA), the trade body representing the Indian semiconductor and electronics industry presented a report on “Current status and potential for medical electronics in India.” The report that details its findings on the opportunities in the Indian medical electronics field was released by Dr. Devi Shetty of Narayana Hrudayalaya in the presence of Dr. Bobby Mitra, ISA chairman, Poornima Shenoy, ISA president and Vivek Sharma, convener of the ISA Medical Electronics Segment.
Some of the key findings in the report indicate that the Indian medical electronics market growth is taking place due to some key features which are unique to India such as changing demographics and age profile which is prone to spend more on healthcare; rise of lifestyle diseases and the need for their diagnosis; increasing awareness leading to the growth of preventive healthcare; increase in healthcare spend due to increase in healthcare insurance; growth in medical tourism to address international needs; and entry of corporates into the healthcare arena.Read more…

Body scan to boost cancer treatment

December 20, 2010

An advanced type of body scan could help doctors decide when a man with slow-growing prostate cancer needs treatment.
Many men diagnosed with early prostate cancer that is not immediately life threatening undergo “active surveillance”.
Doctors monitor their condition with biopsies and blood tests and only start aggressive treatment if the tumour starts to grow more quickly.Read more…