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Five Medical Miracles
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 05, 2011 10:49 am 

Joined: Tue Mar 10, 2009 1:21 pm
Posts: 1457
Location: Hampshire
In the midst of all the news about what’s bad for us, from plastic bottles to diet soda, it’s easy to forget that there’s a lot of good news on the health front. In recent months, there have been some astonishing medical breakthroughs that may alter the way disease is treated –and the quality of patients’ lives.

Making Cells That Kill Cancer

Chemotherapy and radiation, two of the most common treatments for cancer, come from outside the patient. But now doctors at the University of Pennsylvania have come up with a treatment that transforms the patients’ own cells into “serial killer” cells that target one cancer cell after another. As a result, cancer completely disappeared from two subjects with leukemia, and a third patient showed a 70 percent reduction in cancer cells. Researchers cautioned, though, that it may be years before the treatment makes it to the market.

Getting A New Face
Charla Nash, who was attacked by a friend’s chimp in 2009, suffered some of the most horrific facial wounds in medical history. The attack left her without a nose and lips, and the sight of her face was disturbing enough that she wore a veil when she went out in public. But earlier this year, doctors at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston performed a 20-hour face transplant, using a donor face, as well as a double hand transplant. Over time, the new facial skin adhered to Nash’s bone structure. There have been at least eighteen such transplants performed worldwide in the last few years . But Nash’s was most notable because of the severity of her injuries.

Botox Is Serious Medicine
When we hear the word Botox, most of us think of cosmetic procedures that plump up lips and fill out wrinkles. But the truth is that Botox is used for several other purposes, including treatment of migraines. The latest research shows that Botox can help reduce urinary incontinence in patients with multiple sclerosis and spinal cord injuries. And that helps reduce both personal embarrassment (which often leads to depression) as well as the chances of getting recurrent urinary tract infections. Allergan, the drug’s manufacturer, is now trying to get Botox licensed for its latest treatment.

The Anti-Cancer Vaccine

Researchers at the University of London have found that the germ commonly used to inoculate against tuberculosis can help the body fight cancer. The scientists found that a small amount of BCG (Baculillus Calmette-Guerin), normally used to vaccinate against tuberculousis, could “instruct” white blood cells to manufacture cytokines, substances t hat are used to alert the body’s immune system to attackers. The tests were performed on malignant cells outside the human body that were taken from patients suffering lung, breast, colon, pancreatic and skin cancer. The researchers hope to test their theory in a clinical trial.

Getting To The Heart Of MS

Last month, a massive genetic study came up with 29 new genes that could give experts new insight into analyzing the intricacies of multiple sclerosis, and possibly developing new treatments. The study was conducted in 15 countries by the Multiple Sclerosis Genetics Commission, a group made up of researchers from various institutions. Because the study was so large – 10,000 MS patients took part, as well as 17,000 healthy subjects – researchers could distinguish more genes than had been previously found. Nearly one third of the genes have been linked as well to other autoimmune diseases, including lupus, rheumatoid arthritis and type 1 diabetes.


Five Medical Miracles
PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2011 7:12 am 

Joined: Wed Jul 13, 2011 5:48 pm
Posts: 5
Location: United Kingdom
Ive had minor random spasm-type things before, Ive found it normally goes away after a while on its own. How often is it happening, and how severely/strongly? Im not a medical student by the way


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