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Archive for the ‘Hormone Clinic’ Category

How doctors in Texas are trying to protect transgender patients from a persistent threat: HIV – Los Angeles Times

When the Kind Clinic began offering free or low-cost hormone therapy for transgender people in March, word spread quickly here. Within days, the service was booked up until the end of June. Now the next available appointment is in December.

For the patients flocking to the clinic north of downtown the first of its kind in central Texas its a chance to begin a transition many thought they could not afford. But for the doctors, the rush is a chance to start addressing another major health problem facing the transgender community: the staggering rates of HIV.

By offering hormone therapy, the clinic aims to earn the trust of a population that often feels alienated by mainstream medicine and persuade those at high risk of exposure to the virus to start on a drug regimen that can prevent infection.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved a regimen marketed as Truvada for use as a pre-exposure prophylaxis against HIV in 2012, but it is not widely prescribed.

Katie Falkenberg / Los Angeles Times

Dr. Cynthia Brinson, medical director at the Kind Clinic, consults with a transgender patient, Peter Haley.

Dr. Cynthia Brinson, medical director at the Kind Clinic, consults with a transgender patient, Peter Haley. (Katie Falkenberg / Los Angeles Times)

Is that just available to anyone? Peter Haley, a 27-year-old transgender patient, asked a Kind Clinic doctor when she told him about Truvada.

The doctor, Cynthia Brinson, explained that the clinic would first want to provide counseling about the medicine and do a series of tests to rule out a preexisting HIV infection and other potential complications. But if everything checked out, she said, the clinic would provide a prescription and help filling it at little or no cost.

Haley had come to the clinic because he was no longer covered by his mothers insurance and couldn't afford the $100-a-month prescription for testosterone injections or routine visits to the doctor.

Recently married, he didnt think he was in any immediate danger from HIV. But he left the clinic with a stack of leaflets about pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP.

I have a lot of friends who probably should know about it, he told the doctor.

A 2013 review of the limited research estimated that as many as 22% of transgender women in the U.S. were living with the AIDS-causing virus a rate 27 times higher than for the general population of reproductive age (15 to 49). More than half of African American transgender women could be infected, according to one study. The risk to transgender men is believed to be lower, although there is even less data about them.

The population is so vulnerable because the stigmatized place that transgender people occupy in society translates into extremely high rates of poverty, substance abuse, mental health difficulties, homelessness and incarceration all of which increase the odds of having sex without condoms or sharing needles, the two most common ways that HIV is spread in the U.S.

Finding a job can be especially difficult for some transgender women, so they may turn to sex work, which puts them in even greater danger. Many clients dont want to use condoms, they say, and assaults are common.

Katie Falkenberg / Los Angeles Times

Kelly Kline, one of the Kind Clinic's first transgender patients, takes a pill once a day to protect herself from HIV.

Kelly Kline, one of the Kind Clinic's first transgender patients, takes a pill once a day to protect herself from HIV. (Katie Falkenberg / Los Angeles Times)

Many of those living with HIV refuse to get tested or treated because of bad experiences at mainstream medical facilities.

A survey by the National Center for Transgender Equality in 2015 found that 23% of the nearly 28,000 respondents hadnt seen a doctor when they needed one in the last year, because they were afraid of being mistreated. A third couldnt afford to see one.

Of those who had consulted a healthcare provider, a third reported being refused treatment, verbally harassed, assaulted or subjected to some other mistreatment.

You go to the doctor to seek help, but they act like theyre disgusted by you sometimes, said Kelly Kline, 42, one of the Kind Clinics first transgender patients.

She recalled the New Years Eve that she came down with pneumonia and had to go to the emergency room.

Everyone was so nice, until they asked for my ID, she said. Then the receptionist, in front of everybody, asked, So, youre a man?!

The doctor did a double take when he saw her and checked her chart.

Im so sorry, she recalled him saying. They told me there was supposed to be a man on my table.

Kline, a community activist who hosts a popular drag show at an Austin nightclub, said she has lost count of the number of friends who have died of AIDS-related complications so many people. Some refuse to get tested because they cant face the possibility of an HIV diagnosis. But others are afraid of how they will be received.

Because transgender people feel so unwelcome at many medical facilities, opportunities for preventing the spread of HIV the best hope for containing the virus short of a cure or a vaccine are being missed.

The Austin clinic began in 2015 with the aim of making Truvada more easily available to those at high risk of contracting the virus. That includes anyone who is in a relationship with an HIV-positive person, gay and bisexual men who do not regularly use condoms with partners whose HIV status they dont know, and anyone who sometimes shares equipment to inject drugs or hormones.

Taken daily, the medicine has been shown to reduce the risk of infection by more than 90%.

Though public health officials in Texas and across the nation have made it a component of their strategies against the virus, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said that many primary care doctors and nurses remain unaware of it.

The medicine has also faced opposition from some doctors and AIDS activists who argue that offering people another way to block HIV transmission would undermine long-standing efforts to promote the use of condoms, a method that is also effective against other sexually transmitted infections. The CDC issued guidelines in 2013 stipulating that PrEP should be used with condoms.

Some doctors in Texas which sees 4,000 new infections each year also object to the medicine on moral grounds, arguing it encourages promiscuity and intravenous drug use.

Brinson, who in addition to being the clinics medical director provides care at the county jail, recalled having to break the news to an inmate that he was HIV-positive. The man was stunned because he had tested negative just three months prior.

Well, did they offer you PrEP? she asked him. No, he had never heard of the regimen.

Just having people continually come in to be tested but not offering them a prevention seemed ludicrous, she said.

Most of the people who work at the clinic are volunteers, and the care is free, thanks to a combination of public and private funding. The clinic can also help patients cover the prescription costs for Truvada, which run over $1,600 a month without insurance.

By the end of last year, the clinic was providing the medicine to 800 patients, most of them gay or bisexual men, who account for the majority of new HIV infections in the U.S.

But the doctors worried about how few transgender people were coming in. So they reached out to community representatives, who pointed out that for many transgender people, HIV is a secondary concern to obtaining the hormones they need to transition. The observation was borne out by recent studies that recommend combining HIV and gender care services for these patients.

And so the clinic began offering hormone therapy.

Our strategy is around getting to zero [new infections], and you cant do that without addressing the needs of the transgender community in a way that makes sense to them, said Joe McAdams, the Kind Clinics executive director.

At first, the clinic offered gender care appointments one evening each week. To meet the growing demand, it recently added weekend hours and is planning to move to larger premises in August.

More than a quarter of the transgender patients decide to try Truvada, said McAdams, who has been living with HIV himself for 30 years.

One of them is Kline. She now takes a blue pill every morning with her allergy medicine.

She loves coming to the clinic. On her first visit, she was offered a questionnaire that asked about her gender identity, the sex she was assigned at birth and what pronouns she prefers.

Other doctors have never, ever asked about it, she said.

Twitter: @alexzavis

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How doctors in Texas are trying to protect transgender patients from a persistent threat: HIV - Los Angeles Times

Hormone caused by stress could lead to weight gain, study says –

Raleigh, N.C. Everyone knows how stress can affect their mood and often their food choices, but can long-term stress actually make people gain weight?

Recent research from the English Longitudinal Study of Aging shows it's possible that constant stress can add to your waist line. The gain is due to a potential link between people's bodies and the stress hormone cortisol.

"People who had higher BMIs had higher levels of cortisol, and people who had higher waist circumference, kind of carrying their weight in the middle, also had that higher level of cortisol," said the Cleveland Clinic's Dr. Leslie Heinberg.

Researchers compared the stress levels and body weight of more than 2,500 men and women over the age of 54.

They examined locks of hair for cortisol over a 2-month period.

Cortisol is the hormone secreted by the adrenal glands, and it tends to ramp up during times of stress.

Cortisol levels can vary greatly throughout the course of a day, but excessive levels over time can wreak havoc on the body.

It may get in the way of healthy habits, such as getting a good night's rest, exercise and eating a healthy diet.

Heinberg says it's a reminder not to put our health on the back burner when we're stressed out.

"Things like exercise, meditation, mindfulness exercises, relaxation," also help reduce stress - as well as controlling your weight, Heinberg said.

Heinberg says the research is not conclusive about whether the stress of study participants was a result of being overweight or if being overweight was a result of stress. She believes it may be a combination of the two.

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Hormone caused by stress could lead to weight gain, study says -

HRC releases video highlighting importance of Planned Parenthood for LGBTQ community – Metro Weekly

Brooke Baxa Photo: Human Rights Campaign, via YouTube.

The Human Rights Campaign has released a video highlighting the important role that Planned Parenthood plays in providing culturally competent health care to the LGBTQ community.

The video, which was launched Friday, is in response to a provision in the Senate version of a Republican-led health care reform effort that would prohibit Planned Parenthood from receiving Medicaid dollars. Because Senate Republicans plan on using reconciliation to pass the bill, the defunding of Planned Parenthood would only last one fiscal year, as opposed to a permanent ban. But the damage likely forcing several Planned Parenthood clinics to close would be done by the time the prohibition expired.

Brooke Baxa, a 22-year old non-binary transgender healthcare advocate, is featured in the video explaining how they were able to get medical treatment through Planned Parenthoods clinic in Denver, Colo. Baxa says they first met other transgender people living authentically through a Planned Parenthood youth conference, which aided them in coming out as transgender and non-binary.

In the fall of 2015, after seeking medical care from Planned Parenthood, Baxa began taking hormones, including testosterone, to help with their transition. Baxa also discovered that Planned Parenthood was well-versed in providing culturally competent health care to LGBTQ patients.

I grew up in rural Nebraska, and there isnt a lot of access to inclusive health care here, especially in regard to being LGBT. Theres not a lot of resources for us here, Baxa says. What I discovered from moving to Colorado and being a low-income person who needed healthcare, I was able to go to Planned Parenthood and receive care.

Because of provisions the Affordable Care Act allowing youth to stay on their parents plan until age 26, Baxa is still able to receive insurance coverage, which covers their hormone treatments. But Baxa remains passionate about ensuring that other LGBTQ people who are less fortunate are able to access medically necessary care.

For some, covering hormones and hormone replacement therapy is seen as a luxury. But for the vast majority of transgender patients, being on hormones and receiving that care is lifesaving, Baxa says. You shouldnt have to go bankrupt just to get the medication you need to be who you are.

The Human Rights Campaign and Planned Parenthood will be holding events on social media highlighting the symbiotic relationship between Planned Parenthood and the LGBTQ community, and encourage people to protest the defunding of Planned Parenthood. The organizations will also be alerting people to the dangers posed to the LGBTQ community and others by the repeal of the Affordable Care Act and the protections it provides in terms of access to coverage for medically necessary treatment.

David Stacy, HRCs director of government affairs, notes that the Affordable Care Act took significant steps to connect LGBTQ people, particularly those who are low-income, with health insurance coverage through the expansion of state Medicaid programs. Provisions in the ACA that prohibited discrimination against transgender people and barred insurance companies from denying coverage based on pre-existing conditions also helped significant numbers of LGBTQ people obtain access to health care reducing the disparities in coverage between the LGBTQ community and the broader public.

The rollback of the Medicaid expansion and the cuts to Medicaid that are in both the House and Senate bill would be absolutely devastating to people living with HIV, says Stacy, detailing the numerous ways that a repeal of the ACA would effect the LGBTQ community. The same goes for transgender people who are poorer than average because of discrimination and challenges in employment. So transgender peoples health continues to be a challenge, but the ACA has helped increase insurance coverage for those folks, and thats really critical.

Baxa says the transgender community is particularly concerned about the reduction of services that could result if Planned Parenthood loses out on Medicaid dollars, which could impact whether clinics offer hormone replacement therapy or other treatments, not to mention preventative care and family planning services that would also be endangered by such cuts.

With respect to the possibility of repealing the ACA, Baxa says getting treatments covered by insurance is always a concern, particularly for the trans community.

Even by todays standards, where we think that most of these treatments are covered by insurance, Ive seen, in the last few months, people trying to get gender-confirming surgeries and being denied coverage when they have the same insurance that someone was approved for less than a year ago, says Baxa.

As I look to the future and what my medical future looks like, it is always a concern that our coverage or our care in general is on the chopping block.

See HRCs video featuring Brooke Baxa below:

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HRC releases video highlighting importance of Planned Parenthood for LGBTQ community - Metro Weekly

Hormone therapy is a horrible risk for kids – New York Post

Bathroom signs are temporary, but hormones are forever.

That seems to be the implication of a new paper called Growing Pains: Problems with Puberty Suppression in Treating Gender Dysphoria, published in the journal The New Atlantis this week.

Paul Hruz of the Washington University Medical School and Lawrence Mayer and Paul McHugh of Johns Hopkins Medical School looked at the recent use of hormones to treat children who feel that they should be members of the opposite sex and concluded that this experimental treatment, which is becoming commonplace in medicine, could have serious long-term effects on children.

According to an analysis by UCLA last year, about 1.4 million people in the United States identify as transgender, a growing number of whom are children. And theres no doubt the number of children diagnosed with gender dysphoria described by clinicians as incongruence between ones experienced/expressed gender and assigned gender has been on the rise.

A gender identity clinic for children in the United Kingdom, for instance, received 94 referrals in 2009-10 and 1,986 referrals in 2016-17 a 2,000 percent increase. Referrals for children under the age of 6 went from six to 32 in the same time period.

According to the authors, the reasons for the rise arent clear. It could be that increased awareness has led more parents to have their children treated. Or it could be that gender affirming treatments may drive some children to persist in identifying as transgender when they might otherwise have, as they grow older, found their gender to be aligned with their sex.

In fact, as the authors note, the vast majority of children with gender dysphoria grow out of it. But for parents whose children are experiencing symptoms right now, things can be very difficult for them and for the kids, who are more prone to depression and suicidal thoughts.

Well-meaning parents who want to alleviate this burden as their children approach puberty (and their bodies seem to comport even less with their gender identity) have been increasingly trying hormone suppression. This will not only mean, though, that sex organs wont develop in boys and girls in the usual way. Puberty, as the authors note, affects all parts of the body. It changes the development of the brain, muscle mass, bone growth and a variety of other systems.

While parents might see hormones as a way of allowing their children to postpone decisions about actual sex-reassignment surgery the removal of testicles, the creation of breasts, etc. the truth is that this therapy may have real and long-term effects on childrens physical and psychological development. Whether blocking puberty is the best way to treat gender dysphoria remains far from settled, Hruz, Mayer and McHugh write, and it should be considered ... a drastic and experimental measure.

Proponents of such treatments like to tout the fact that theyre reversible, but once the process of puberty is disrupted or stopped because of a medical intervention, its not at all clear that if the treatment is stopped, things will proceed as they would have otherwise, according to the report: There are virtually no published reports, even case studies, of adolescents withdrawing from puberty-suppressing drugs and then resuming the normal pubertal development typical for their sex.

And the fact that few withdraw from this treatment may simply indicate that these treatments increase the likelihood that the patients cross-gender identification will persist.

Indeed, the use of these drugs to treat gender dysphoria is entirely off label, meaning parents who would never feed their children food that wasnt tested by the FDA or give them toys that werent approved by the Consumer Product Safety Commission are signing their kids up to receive drugs that are purely experimental at this stage.

Children cant consent to this. How can parents agree to this on their behalf?

As a society, we can continue to debate policies for locker rooms and restrooms. We can talk about the extent to which religious institutions should be forced to hire transgender employees. If we make a mistake on those, it can be fixed. But when it comes to ensuring that children are able to be healthy and happy, adopting radical and experimental medical treatments will be awfully hard to undo.

Naomi Schaefer Riley is a senior fellow at the Independent Womens Forum.

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Hormone therapy is a horrible risk for kids - New York Post

The Machine of ’87: Messi’s Boyhood Teammates Recall Early Signs of Greatness – Bleacher Report

Young Leo Messi joined his hometown club, Newell's Old Boysor "Nuls," as people in Argentina call itwhen he was just six years old. He'd been waiting almost all his life for the day. The club was his birthright. His uncles and aunts had given him a red-and-black Newell's jersey for his first birthday. Both his older brothers had played youth-team football for the club. He even had gone to the club's stadium in Rosario to see Diego Maradona's Nuls debut in October 1993.

In his first game for Newell's, a 6-0 victory, Messi scored four goals, according to the Association of Rosario Football. He was setting a tone. He became the totem for arguably Argentina's most famous under-age team, "La Maquina del '87," or "The Machine of '87," named after the year a crop of the club's players were born. They were invincible. In what's called "baby football" in Argentinaa seven-a-side game children play until they're 11La Maquina del '87 went unbeaten for three years.

When the club graduated to the 11-a-side format at age 11, with more space to play with on the bigger pitches, it was more of the same. They swept all before them. They won every tournament they entered, plundering fields across Argentina and competitions as far away as Peru, on the other side of the continent. In 2000, Newell's won their championship by at least 20 points, according to Franco Falleroni, one of the team's strikers. "In five or six seasons, we only lost about three times," says another teammate, Gonzalo Mazzia.

Sometimes Newell's own goalkeeper was so bored during the beatings his outfield teammates were administering, he would sit on his backside in the box. They bullied teams so badlyracking up 10, 12 and 15 goals a gamethat some opponents put a 6-0 limit on the scoreline. The game would have to stop once six goals had gone in. It was the only way to stem the bleeding.

Messi was insatiable. I ask Adrian Coriawho coached Messi in 10th grade, the final year he played for Newell's before leaving to join Barcelona at age 13if it is true that Messi scored more than 500 goals for Newell's during those years as a kid.

Coria puffs out his lips. "At least."

Messi was grumpy when he didn't score in a game, like a gambler being wrenched from the rails. "He used to go crazy when he couldn't score a goal," remembers Falleroni. "He was a very ambitious guy. Even if he wonif the team won 7-0but he didn't score a goal, he got angry. Or if he didn't get passed the ball, he got angry. You could see it in his face. That's his temperament, his personality. He always wanted the ball."

Falleroni lives in Chabas. It's the town he grew up in, which is a two-hour bus ride from Rosario. As a star child footballer, it was a difficult beatchugging in and out to Rosario for training and matches with Newell's, week in, week out. Messi and Falleroni became fast friends. Messi used to come out and stay with him. They'd fool around on the PlayStation. On the quiet dirt roads of Chabas, Falleroni's father taught the 11-year-old Messihow to drive, too. "My dad had a Peugeot 306," Falleroni says. "We had to give Leo a large pillow to sit on because he couldn't reach the steering wheel."

There weren't many cars careering around the streets of Messi's barrio in the south zone of Rosario when he was growing up. It's a hardscrabble neighbourhood, although it's not a shantytown like, say, Villa Fiorito, where Maradona sprung from in Buenos Aires. Maradona grew up in the 1960s in a shack with no running water or electricity; he used to scavenge for pesos as a kid by selling scrap and the foil wrapping from cigarette papers, among other enterprises.

Messi wanted for nothing. He got a good schooling.

Many in Argentina will tell you that Messi will forever live in the shadow of Maradona unless he delivers a World Cup. Some Argentines prefer the roguery of Maradona, too. He has what is known locally as "viveza," an ability to get by on his wits.

"The 'viveza' have a certain cunning that is learned in the streets," says Ramiro Martin, author of Messi: Un Genio en la Escuela del Futbol. "Being 'vivo' in Argentina means being cunning, even knowing how to cheat to achieve your goals. It is called 'viveza criolla,' something that I, as an Argentinian, am not proud of, but it is historical."

The houses along the streets of Messi's childhood neighbourhood are low-slung, one and two storeys high, with some tarpaulin roofing in places and walls that are thirsting for paint. There's lots of idlingpeople sitting outside their front doors on plastic chairs, the odd beggar hanging around the traffic lights hustling for some change and scores of dogs ambling about and barking.

On the street corners, utility poles and spare walls are daubed roughly in the colours of either Newell's or its great city rival, Rosario Central, as part of the land wars that divide Rosario. There are murals of Messi to remind people of their most famous son, but they have to be sought outone on the wall at the back of his old primary school and another that materialised before the 2014 World Cup finals close to Grandoli Football Club, where Messi played a couple of seasons of formal football before joining Newell's.

Messi's family house, which was built by Messi's father and grandfather with their own hands, is still standing. It was never sold. His mother and sister only moved out in 2010, per Sebastian Fest and Alexandre Julliard's book Misterio Messi: Los Secretos del Mejor Jugador del Mundo. His grandparents' house is around the corner and halfway up the street from his parents' old home.

A woman in her 30s answers the door when I knock but won't speak. The next-door neighbour, Lucia, is full of chat, though, when prodded about the young Messi. "He was a quiet child. Muy tranquilo," she says. "My only problem with him was that he used to interrupt my siestaall the time kicking a football against my wall."

After a couple of seasons playing with Newell's, the club facilitated a meeting for Messi with an endocrinologist, Dr. Diego Schwarzstein, to address a growth hormone issue. His teammates used to call him "pulga," the flea. He didn't like the nickname, says Sergio Maradona, one of his former teammates.

The doctor got a call that they were sending him "the best player that we have." Messi was nine years old when he first visited Schwarzstein's clinic. It was January 31, 1997, the day of the doctor's birthday.

Messi was one of about every 20,000 in the population who suffer from growth hormone deficiency. He was only a little over 4'0" tall when he joined Newell's and 15-20 centimetres below his target height. His problem was treatable. His body was otherwise normal.

One of Messi's old coaches at Newell's, Quique Dominguez, is quoted in a Messi biography by Guillem Balague as saying that Messi "hardly had a ribcage, it was caved in, looking at his chest was scary." Schwarzstein clarifies, however, that Messi's physique was fine other than the height issue. The dimensions of his body were in "harmony," says Schwarzstein.

Every day, Messi self-administered a growth hormone with a small syringe. It was a painless procedure, less intrusive than a mosquito bite. "I have seen him, here in my parents' place, how he injected himself in his legs. It was a very thin needle, this long," says Falleroni, pointing at the length of his fingernail. "He would come to the house with his medicine, put the pack in the freezer, take it out, inject it by himself into his thigh."

Schwarzstein and Messi built up a close relationship during more than four years of treatment, which was concluded in Barcelona by a different medical team. They connected through football more than anything else; Schwarzstein is an avid football fan and a member of Newell's football club. Messi left him his old Newell's jersey, which he signed, when he moved to Barcelona in early 2001.

Regarding Messi's personality, Schwarzstein makes a distinction. "He was a very nice child. He wasn't shywhen you broke the ice, when you started talking with him, usually football was the initial topic he talked a lot aboutbut he was introverted. One thing is that you prefer to keep some things for yourself. Another thing is if you have anxiety to express yourself, the feeling: 'I'm afraid, I won't say the right thing.' Another thing is to be introvertedif you prefer to keep things for yourself.

"Leo is not shy. He's introverted. He's reserved."

Messi's old teammates at Newell's all testify that he is an open and outgoing guy once he's amongst his circle of friends. Sergio Maradona played at Newell's in the "Generation of '88" team in the same position as Messiin the hole behind the two strikers, as a No. 10, or the "enganche," as it's referred to in Argentine football argot. "In this era, everybody talked about the two of us. It was Messi or meMaradona in '88 or Messi in '87," he says. They both also saw Schwarzstein for growth issues.

Maradona got to know Messi well over those years, and in 1999 he travelled to Buenos Aires with La Maquina del '87 for a tournament. "He was humble," he says. "The idea that he was shy, timidthis is a lie. When he is with his mates, he's great fun. He's guarded with the press or people who don't know him. With his family or his friends, he's very amusing. I remember him as a funny guy, entertaining, extroverted but also a very respectful person, modest, unassuming. He never had problems with anyone."

Messi and Maradona played in that tournament together in the last week of July 1999. They travelled the four hours to Buenos Aires by bus and were billeted with families by the host club, Defensores de Villa Ramallo. Newell's blitzed each team that came before them, winning their pool games, 10-0, 3-0, 7-0 and both the semifinal and final by 5-0 scorelines, with Messi and Maradona both scoring in the semifinal and final. Messi finished the competition with 15 goals to his credit.

Maradona is one of the "sliding door" characters in Messi's tale. What could have been? They both had great talent. Maradona did less with his. Life has been a caper for him. "My problem was discipline," he says. The Spanish club Villarreal came for him when he was 11 years old, but his father nixed the move. He was too young.

Once he was old enough to become a professional, he started bouncing around the leagues in South America as a mercenary, fathering children along the way. He has four kidsone in Mexico, two in Bolivia and one in Argentina. "In that I am like Maradona," he says, laughing.

Maradona had to leave Mexico in a hurry. He ended up playing with a semiprofessional team owned by drug trafficker, as part of a 12-team Mexican league. The team owners used to bet on their teams. When Maradona's team travelled to Ciudad Juarez to play matches, they never stayed overnight. "You could hear shooting every night," he says. He got his team owner's daughter pregnant; she had a girl, who is seven years old. "I had to come back to Argentina because they wanted to kill me," Maradona says. One of his old coaches and his family were murdered, says Maradona, because his team lost a final.

Gustavo "Billy" Rodas was the star of Newell's "Generation of '86" team. He made his first-team debut at 16 years of age. He's another player who is held up as an example of a guy who coulda been a contender, but whose career never took off, owing to social problems.

Sergio Almiron, who was a World Cup winner with Argentina in 1986, worked as a technical director of Newell's youth academy at the time Messi and Rodas played "baby" football. He points to the crucial role Messi's parents played in his development.

"Leo was given all that was necessary for a boy to grow. Billy didn't have that. He never made it. At 14 to 15 years old, because his parents were very poor, he was given a hotel room at the Riviera for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks. Later, he was given an apartment to live in, with his mother, so she could contain him. But she couldn't control him. For him, it was more important to play with his neighbourhood friends. He had a lot of problems. He left the club. I brought him back again. He disappeared again. He would start training again. Then he'd be gone again.

"Both parents were there for Messi. They supported him. They wanted what was best for their son. They sacrificed everything for him, and the result is the Messi we have today. Billy Rodas didn't have that restraint that Leo had. Here in Argentina, you have good friends and bad friends, drugs, alcohol. Often, it is your family that can keep you on the straight and narrow."

In July, Maradona will pack his bags again. He's due to play for a team in Bolivia next season. He won't miss the close attention of Argentine defenders. They are the worst of their breed in the South American leagues, he says.

"There is a lot of conflict with football in Argentina. It's very aggressive. It's hard. There's a lot of fouling. Football in Mexico, for example, is more fluid, more tactical, faster. Defenders in Argentina will do anything to upset you. They'll spit on you. They'll stick a finger up your arse. They'll prick you with a needle. Can you believe it? They are terrible.

"This is football in Argentina."

Maradona says Messi never shied away from tough defenders: "Even though the ball was bigger than him, he was never afraid. He never cried. He played better when they kicked him. He was always brave. He wanted to play with the ball, to dribble, to go forward."

Messi always got the worst shoeing during games against Central. They were Newell's toughest rivals. During one derby match, he did five "sombreros" on his markercheekily flicking the ball over his head five times. Watching on from the terraces, the defender's father was apoplectic. "Kill him! Kill him!" he screamed.

Falleroni remembers a guy in his town who kept hassling him. He was sick of all the talk about this phenomenon that was supposed to be like Diego Maradona. "He used to say, 'Who is this Messi? You talk so much about him. Bring him here!' So we organised a small match to play. In one manoeuvre, Messi nutmegged him twice. Can you imagine? In the same playtwo nutmegs! The boy stopped talking then."

Coria says one of the things that distinguished Messi was his explosiveness.

"My football idol is Maradona. He played the same as Leo. Leo was very explosive. He could burst from zero to 100 very quickly. It's like starting an engine. Diego had this, but sideways, not with that ability to get a guy off his back with just one move. Leo had a lot of power. He worked very hard on improving this power, working on his physique. Generally players either have very good technique and ball control, but they aren't fast. Leo was fast and he had brilliant skill, both things together. This made him different."

The Maquina del '87 players picked the team's captain. Usually it was Messi, sometimes Lucas Scaglia, whose first cousin is Antonella Roccuzzo, the mother of Messi's two sons. Roccuzzo and Messi will marry in Rosario on June 30, a week after Messi's 30th birthday. They have known each other since they were five years old.

"Leo has always liked Antonella, since forever," Falleroni says, "although she didn't pay him much attention when they were little. We knew he was in love with Antonella. I remember one day, we went to Lucas' house in Funes. We went there for a weekend. Antonella was there too. Every time Messi saw her, he blushed!"

When Messi wasn't thinking about Antonella, he was mulling over football. It obsessed him. He was always meticulous in preparing for training and games. Even when he was five years old and playing with Grandoli, he had his routine. He used to clean his boots before a match with a brush and cloth, and bandage his anklesan Argentine practice to safeguard against piranha defendersbefore kick-off, as per Balague's Messi.

"He thought like a professional. He had this conviction, this passion," says Bruno Milanesio, who played as a defender on his Newell's team. "He is crazy about football. He has been since he was very young. He thought all the time about the ball, how to dribble other players, how to solve a situation. Every day, he trained to be better. He always wanted more, more, more. He put football before everything."

It wasn't a done deal that Messi would make it, however. "When he played, as a child, he showed a lot of potential," Almiron says. "He might score seven goals in a match sometimes, but no one could ever imagine that he was going to become the best player in the world. He was still so young. There are football players from seven to 14 years old who you think might be a great football player. But at 17, 18, they don't kick on football-wise. It was impossible to know that Messi at eight or 10 or 12 years old was going to be the Messi he is today. You can't tell at that age."

Messi's father, Jorge, who has played a pivotal role in his development, chaperoning him through his teenage years in Barcelona and into adulthood as his manager, had a quiet confidence his son would make it, but he never trumpeted it.

"All the fathers believe they have a Diego Maradona, but it doesn't always work out," says Ruben Horacio Gaggioli, the agent involved in bringing Messi to Barcelona. "In the case of Jorge Messi, he never said his son was going to be the best player in the world or a great player. He was sure he had a very special son with some issueshe was very small. There were doubts about his physique, but football-wise, he never had doubts about his son. He was always sure the project would be OK."

Messi was only one of a handful of Argentine players that Europe's clubs were circling at the time he was burning it up with Newell's. There was more noise being made in Rosario, for example, about Leandro Depetris, who was a year younger. AC Milan bought him in the summer of 2000, when he was 12 years old.

"Depetris at 11 was more famous than Messi," Falleroni says. "Nobody knew Messi. Only we knew about Messi. Even the president, Eduardo Jose Lopez, of Newell's didn't know about Messi at the time.

"I remember Depetris played in a tournament in Cordoba [Argentina] against Newell's in the final. He played against Messi. Depetris' team won. After the game, all the microphones, all the journalists surrounded Depetris. Nobody went near Messi. Coria couldn't believe it. For us, Messi was a far better player than Depetris, much, much better, but nobody knew about Messi."

Barcelona knew. In February 2000, a videotape landed on the lap of Jose Maria Minguella, Barcelona's most famous agent, which began a two-year saga that ultimately led to Messi becoming a Barca player. As part of the trial process in Catalonia, Messi flew with his father to Barcelona for a two-week trial in September 2000. Nobody at Newell's knew he had gone. The rumour going around was that he had hepatitis.

"A month passed without seeing Messi," Falleroni says. "We were training and there was no sign of Messi. You can imagine usthe entire panel asking, 'What's up with Messi?' Because we had a close relationship with his family, my dad would phone his house. His mother, Celia, would answer. My dad asked her, 'What's up with Leo? He is not coming to practice.' She said he couldn't come because he was ill. Another week would pass. They kept saying he hadn't recovered. All lies! He disappeared.

"After a month, he came back, looking a little bit more developed, you know? It was strange. We were asking him, 'Leo, are you OK?' And he said, 'Yes, I'm better.' Sometime afterwards, we were training, and his mother came and said, 'Let's go, Leo. We have to go.' 'No,' he said, 'I want to stay a little longer with the guys, with my friends.' But his mother grabbed him by the arm and took him away. He never showed up again.

"A week later, we found out that he was in Barcelona. They did everything behind our backs. He was obliged not to say anything. Barcelona told him, 'Don't tell anyone.' "

For Milanesio, it wasn't a surprise that a 13-year-old boy managed to keep such a huge secretalmost every boy's dreamfrom his closest friends. "Already by that age, Messi was thinking like a professional," he says. Messi was also, of course, mindful, guarded by nature.

The big surprise, says Maradona, was not that Messi ended up playing at a superclub like Barcelona, but that he made the grade so fast.

He made his debut at 16 years of age against Porto in November 2003, and he hasn't stopped surprising football fans since.

All quotes and information obtained firsthand unless otherwise indicated.

Follow Richard on Twitter: @Richard_Fitz

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The Machine of '87: Messi's Boyhood Teammates Recall Early Signs of Greatness - Bleacher Report

Bones make hormones that communicate with the brain and other organs – Science News Magazine

Long typecast as the strong silent type, bones are speaking up.

In addition to providing structural support, the skeleton is a versatile conversationalist. Bones make hormones that chat with other organs and tissues, including the brain, kidneys and pancreas, experiments in mice have shown.

The bone, which was considered a dead organ, has really become a gland almost, says Beate Lanske, a bone and mineral researcher at Harvard School of Dental Medicine. Theres so much going on between bone and brain and all the other organs, it has become one of the most prominent tissues being studied at the moment.

At least four bone hormones moonlight as couriers, recent studies show, and there could be more. Scientists have only just begun to decipher what this messaging means for health. But cataloging and investigating the hormones should offer a more nuanced understanding of how the body regulates sugar, energy and fat, among other things.

Of the hormones on the list of bones messengers osteocalcin, sclerostin, fibroblast growth factor 23 and lipocalin2 the last is the latest to attract attention. Lipocalin 2, which bones unleash to stem bacterial infections, also works in the brain to control appetite, physiologist Stavroula Kousteni of Columbia University Medical Center and colleagues reported in the March 16 Nature.

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After mice eat, their bone-forming cells absorb nutrients and release a hormone called lipocalin 2 (LCN2) into the blood. LCN2 travels to the brain, where it gloms on to appetite-regulating nerve cells, which tell the brain to stop eating, a recent study suggests.

Researchers previously thought that fat cells were mostly responsible for making lipocalin 2, or LCN2. But in mice, bones produce up to 10 times as much of the hormone as fat cells do, Kousteni and colleagues showed. And after a meal, mices bones pumped out enough LCN2 to boost blood levels three times as high as premeal levels. Its a new role for bone as an endocrine organ, Kousteni says.

Clifford Rosen, a bone endocrinologist at the Center for Molecular Medicine in Scarborough, Maine, is excited by this new bone-brain connection. It makes sense physiologically that there are bidirectional interactions between bone and other tissues, Rosen says. You have to have things to regulate the fuel sources that are necessary for bone formation.

Bones constantly reinvent themselves through energy-intensive remodeling. Cells known as osteoblasts make new bone; other cells, osteoclasts, destroy old bone. With such turnover, the skeleton must have some fine-tuning mechanism that allows the whole body to be in sync with whats happening at the skeletal level, Rosen says. Osteoblasts and osteoclasts send hormones to do their bidding.

Scientists began homing in on bones molecular messengers a decade ago (SN: 8/11/07, p. 83). Geneticist Gerard Karsenty of Columbia University Medical Center found that osteocalcin made by osteoblasts helps regulate blood sugar. Osteocalcin circulates through the blood, collecting calcium and other minerals that bones need. When the hormone reaches the pancreas, it signals insulin-making cells to ramp up production, mouse experiments showed. Osteocalcin also signals fat cells to release a hormone that increases the bodys sensitivity to insulin, the bodys blood sugar moderator, Karsenty and colleagues reported in Cell in 2007. If it works the same way in people, Karsenty says, osteocalcin could be developed as a potential diabetes or obesity treatment.

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Bones produce hormones that go to work in other organs. Some of those functions are known, but researchers are finding new ways these hormones may work.

Blood sugar and insulin metabolism

Memory and mood

Testosterone production

Pancreas and fat tissue



Their data is fairly convincing, says Sundeep Khosla, a bone biologist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. But the data in humans has been less than conclusive. In observational studies of people, its hard to say that osteocalcin directly influences blood sugar metabolism when there are so many factors involved.

More recent mouse data indicate that osteocalcin may play a role in energy metabolism. After an injection of the hormone, old mice could run as far as younger mice. Old mice that didnt receive an osteocalcin boost ran about half as far, Karsenty and colleagues reported last year in Cell Metabolism. As the hormone increases endurance, it helps muscles absorb more nutrients. In return, muscles talk back to bones, telling them to churn out more osteocalcin.

There are hints that this feedback loop works in humans, too. Womens blood levels of osteocalcin increased during exercise, the team reported.

Mounting evidence from the Karsenty lab suggests that osteocalcin also could have more far-flung effects. It stimulates cells in testicles to pump out testosterone crucial for reproduction and bone density and may also improve mood and memory, studies in mice have shown. Bones might even use the hormone to talk to a fetuss brain before birth. Osteocalcin from the bones of pregnant mice can penetrate the placenta and help shape fetal brain development, Karsenty and colleagues reported in 2013 in Cell. What benefit bones get from influencing developing brains remains unclear.

Another emerging bone messenger is sclerostin. Its day job is to keep bone growth in check by telling bone-forming osteoblasts to slow down or stop. But bones may dispatch the hormone to manage an important fuel source fat. In mice, the hormone helps convert white (or bad) fat into more useful energy-burning beige fat, molecular biologist Keertik Fulzele of Boston University and colleagues reported in the February Journal of Bone and Mineral Research.

Osteocalcin, sclerostin and LCN2 offer tantalizing clues about bones communication skills. Another hormone, fibroblast growth factor 23, or FGF-23, may have more immediate medical applications.

Bones use FGF-23 to tell the kidneys to shunt extra phosphate that cant be absorbed. In people with kidney failure, cancer or some genetic diseases, including an inherited form of rickets called X-linked hypophosphatemia, FGF-23 levels soar, causing phosphate levels to plummet. Bones starved of this mineral become weak and prone to deformities.

In the case of X-linked hypophosphatemia, or XLH, a missing or broken gene in bones causes the hormone deluge. Apprehending the molecular accomplice may be easier than fixing the gene.

In March, researchers, in collaboration with the pharmaceutical company Ultragenyx, completed the first part of a Phase III clinical trial in adults with XLH the final test of a drug before federal approval. The scientists tested an antibody that latches on to extra FGF-23 before it can reach the kidneys. Structurally similar to the kidney proteins where FGF-23 docks, the antibody is like a decoy in the blood, says Lanske, who is not involved in the trial. Once connected, the duo is broken down by the body.

Traditionally, treating XLH patients has been like trying to fill a bathtub without a plug. The kidney is peeing out the phosphorus, and were pouring it in the mouth as fast as we can so bones mineralize, says Suzanne Jan De Beur, a lead investigator of the clinical trial and director of endocrinology at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center. Success is variable, and debilitating side effects often arise from long-term treatment, she says. The antibody therapy should help restore the bodys ability to absorb phosphate.

Unpublished initial results indicate that the antibody works. Of 68 people taking the drug in the trial, over 90 percent had blood phosphate levels reach and stay in the normal range after 24 weeks of treatment, Ultragenyx announced in April. People taking the antibody also reported less pain and stiffness than those not on the drug.

Osteocalcin, sclerostin and LCN2 might also be involved in treating diseases someday, if results in animals apply to people.

In the study recently published in Nature, Koustenis team found that boosting LCN2 levels in mice missing the LCN2 gene tamed their voracious feeding habits. Even in mice with working LCN2 genes, infusions of the hormone reduced food intake, improved blood sugar levels and increased insulin sensitivity.

Researchers traced the hormones path from the skeleton to the hypothalamus a brain structure that maintains blood sugar levels and body temperature and regulates other processes. Injecting LCN2 into mices brains suppressed appetite and decreased weight gain. Once the hormone crosses the blood-brain barrier and reaches the hypothalamus, it attaches to the surface of nerve cells that regulate appetite, the team proposed.

Mice with defective LCN2 docking stations on their brain cells, however, overate and gained weight just like mice that couldnt make the hormone in the first place. Injections of LCN2 didnt curb eating or weight gain.

(Two mouse studies by another research group published in 2010, however, found that LCN2 had no effect on appetite. Kousteni and colleagues say that inconsistency could have resulted from a difference in the types of mice that the two groups used. Additional experiments by Koustenis lab still found a link between LCN2 and appetite.)

In a small group of people with type 2 diabetes, those who weighed more had less LCN2 in their blood, the researchers found. And a few people whose brains had defective LCN2 docking stations had higher blood levels of the hormone.

If the hormone suppresses appetite in people, it could be a great obesity drug, Rosen says. Its still too early, though, to make any definitive proclamations about LCN2 and the other hormones side hustles, let alone medical implications. Theres just all sorts of things that we are uncovering that weve ignored, Rosen says. But one thing is clear, he says: The era of bone as a silent bystander is over.

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Cy-Fair opens new hormone replacement therapy clinics as interest builds – Community Impact Newspaper

At least three hormonal replacement therapy clinics have opened in Cy-Fair since March. Jason Starr, owner of Mens T Clinic, said the trend could be credited to a growing awareness of benefits.

Starr left an 18-year corporate career with Mattress Firm to open Mens T Clinic in Houston in November 2015 and another in Cypress this March after seeing positive results from testosterone replacement.

Mens testosterone levels decrease as they age, and thats not new, he said. What is newer is this notion that men no longer have to accept it.

Starr, 42, said men and women are having children later in life: He has a 2-year-old and a 4-year-old. In the last five years, pharmaceutical giants have taken notice and invested in hormone replacement gels and injections, he said.

Hormone clinics have been opening up because clients are looking for convenience and specialization, Starr said. Men can have blood work done in the on-site lab and see their results in about half an hour.

Our medical staff is equipped to deal with a wide array of issues, he said. Weve discovered tumors in people in the short time weve been open. Were not just about injecting someone with one medication.

Treatment plans can be personalized and are monitored regularly to ensure safety and efficiency, Starr said. Most clients range in age from 35 to 65 and come every week or two for hormone injections.

Starr said the stigma around his industry is treatment is about sexual dysfunction. Although this can be a factor for some men, other outcomes include feeling younger, having more energy and being able to burn more fat and build more muscle mass.

We hear about how peoples weekends used to be about catching up on rest, staying on the couch, he said. Now theyre about getting out and living their life, playing with their children, being more involved in organizations. Weve also seen people come in six months later having lost 25 pounds.

According to the Mayo Clinic, risks of testosterone therapy include sleep disorders, skin reactions, prostate growth, enlarged breasts, limited sperm production, blood clots and heart disease. Risk levels can depend on age, medical history and family history, so the clinic advises both men and women to speak with a doctor before engaging in hormone therapy.

If someone has a pre-existing condition that testosterone could accelerate or is treating himself without monitoring his hormone levels, the therapy can become a risk, Starr said.

Youre substituting a naturally made hormone in your body with a synthetic version of it, he said. Were continually monitoring to make sure were treating people safely and effectively.

Karilyn Barnett opened BeBalanceda hormone therapy practice focused on womenon Hwy. 290 in April. Similar to Starr, Barnett opened the clinic after finding success in the program herself.

I saw my family physician right before I found [BeBalanced], and I had hit a plateau for several weeks, Barnett said. She looked at me and said, Sometimes you just have to accept the fact that youre getting older. She didnt have any answers.

Barnett said she had heavy menstrual cycles as a young girl, and she was diagnosed with endometriosis in her 20s. This led to infertility, and she had a hysterectomy to address the issues, which led to other problems, including a 60-pound weight gain.

Many women come into the clinic at a loss because exercising and dieting does not always deliver weight loss results, Barnett said.

I had worked from home for the last 15 years, which allowed me to hide and harbor my weight, she said. It got to the point where I didnt want to do anything socially or leave the house, and I had anxiety and depression.

About a year and a half ago, Barnett started researching career opportunities outside the home and stumbled upon franchising for BeBalanced online. Skeptical at first, she went through treatment to learn more and quickly began to feel better about herself after using homeopathic creams that support glandular systems and balance progesterone levels.

Within the first month, Barnett said she lost 18 pounds, no longer experienced anxiety or depression, stopped having hot flashes and did not crave sugar anymore. Results were not only immediate, but they were also long-lasting, she said.

Our centers are designed to be a place where women can share some of the things theyve been experiencing, she said. We validate that youre not crazy, but these things are very real. To me, the biggest thing that I got was hope that there was something out there that could help me.

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Cy-Fair opens new hormone replacement therapy clinics as interest builds - Community Impact Newspaper

Sinclair Broadcast Group donates pallets of food to Maryland Food Bank – Fox Baltimore

Sinclair Broadcast Group donates pallets of food to Maryland Food Bank

BALTIMORE (WBFF) -- Employees of Sinclair Broadcast Group, which owns Fox45, delivered two pallets of food to the Maryland Food Bank on Monday as part of the companys Sinclair Cares initiative.

As part of the initiative, Sinclair and its stations help with organizations that are dedicated to improving the communities we live in.

We have a vision, our vision is connecting people with content everywhere, but we also feel we need to connect with our communities, said Sinclair Broadcast Group's Vice President Joe Koff. I think being a partner with the Maryland Food Bank, it helps us in their mission, which is together we can improve the lives of Marylanders.

Almost a quarter-ton of food was donated.

To donate to the Maryland Food Bank, click here. For more on Sinclair Cares, click here.

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Sinclair Broadcast Group donates pallets of food to Maryland Food Bank - Fox Baltimore

Tiger Woods checks into clinic…Mickelson and his caddie part ways…PGA Tour to start blood testin – WMDT

UNDATED (AP) - Tiger Woods' agent says the golfer has checked into a clinic to get help for dealing with pain medication. Mark Steinberg of Excel Sports Management wouldn't disclose the location of the in-patient treatment Woods is receiving or say how long he might be there. Steinberg says Woods' May 29 arrest in Jupiter, Florida, on a DUI charge shook him up. Woods says his arrest stemmed from a reaction to prescription drugs.

UNDATED (AP) - Phil Mickelson and his caddie have decided to part ways after 25 years of one of the most famous player-caddie relationships on the PGA Tour. Mickelson and Jim "Bones" Mackay say the decision to split was mutual and not based on an incident. Mackay is the only full-time caddie Mickelson has had in a career that has brought him 45 victories worldwide, five majors and a spot in the World Golf Hall of Fame. Mickelson says his brother, Tim Mickelson, will caddie for him the rest of the year.

UNDATED (AP) - The PGA Tour is beefing up its anti-doping policy by adding blood testing next season. Blood testing will allow the tour to detect any use of human growth hormone, which is on the list of banned substances but can't be detected through urine. The tour also is bringing its list of banned substances in line with the World Anti-Doping Association. The revised policy takes effect in October at the start of next season.

CROMWELL, Conn. (AP) - For a second year, a spot near the final hole of the Travelers Championship has been designed to accommodate people who have Lou Gehrig's disease. More than 100 ALS patients will watch some of the world's best golfers from air-conditioned viewing spots with wide travel spaces for easy navigation. They'll get rides to the tent from the parking lot and be served easy-to-eat meals. The late chief executive of the Travelers, Jay Fishman, had the motor neuron disease. He died two weeks after last year's tournament.

BOSTON (AP) - The Boston Red Sox have placed third baseman Pablo Sandoval on the disabled list with a left ear infection. The team also optioned right-hander Austin Maddox to Triple-A Pawtucket before Tuesday night's game in Kansas City. Infielder Deven Marrero and first baseman Sam Travis were recalled from Pawtucket.

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Tiger Woods checks into clinic...Mickelson and his caddie part ways...PGA Tour to start blood testin - WMDT

Vietnam has built an LGBT friendly medical centre PinkNews – PinkNews

Vietnam has built an LGBT-friendly medical centre so the community can have safe access to health care, sexual health information and counselling.

The centre is working towards improving access to health care to trans people especially, as it is currently illegal for people to access hormone of surgery in the country.

Although the country has put laws in place to decriminalise this, they will not take full force until 2019 at the earliest.

As well as decriminalising hormone and surgery treatment, the legislation has introduced more protections for trans people.

The centre will be providing free STI testing as well as providing this extra level of care to trans people,

It will also provide care for those diagnosed with HIV by working with other facilities who may be better equipped.

Based in Ho Chi Minh City, it has been set up by the Mens Health Centre and G -Link, who promote health care within the LGBT community.

Doctors at the clinic have said that it will greatly improve the care of LGBT people, especially trans people who may be self-prescribing hormones.

Dr Tr Anh Duy is a doctor at Bnh Dn Hospital in the same region as the new clinic explained that the clinic was crucial as some trans people can overdose or use substandard hormones, he also fears that these hormones might not be administered in a hygienic way.

One 24-year-old trans woman said that the community was often scared of seeking medical help in the country because they feared being judged.

She explained that she and friends she knew had bought hormones from Thailand but had bad side effects.

She said: I could easily buy hormones from people who had visited Thailand for sex-change surgery. Hormones and that kind of surgery are still not available in Vit Nam.

My friends, who had gone through gender transition, had problems from overdoses because they did not go to a doctor, but just listened to advice from friends.

They had vomiting and spinal pain, and at times felt dizzy. Others even had bleeding after returning to Vietnam from Thailand where they had sex-change surgery.

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Vietnam has built an LGBT friendly medical centre PinkNews - PinkNews

Weight lifting benefits peri-menopausal women – Idaho State Journal

I admit to being a meathead. A gym rat and a few other adjectives would also fit. When I write an article or blog on lifting weights, I always fear people will think I am just presenting my addiction to justify it.

While that may be the case, strength training is becoming more and more prevalent in the medical literature as a better solution to some medical concerns than doing cardiovascular training (also called cardio).

Weight lifting can be beneficial for anyone, of any age. But people I see on a regular basis in my clinic include wonderful women in that intangible peri-menopausal state. These are women who are not quite at the change but in that elusive right before menopause situation.

Peri-menopause has many presentations including anxiety, irregular periods, mood changes, depression, weight gain, loss of cognitive abilities (best defined by my patients as brain fog), etc.

Weight lifting or strength training helps combat these symptoms. Strength training has been shown to increase the production of testosterone.

It is very common to think of testosterone as the male hormone. But it is very important in females as well, especially those in the peri-menopausal state.

When a woman enters the peri-menopausal state, natural testosterone production can decrease by over 50 percent. Strength training or weight lifting has been shown both to increase testosterone production and decrease several of the symptoms related to this pre-menopausal state.

Really hitting it hard in the gym helps prevent these symptoms of peri-menopause and menopause. Strength training decreases body fat, increases muscle mass, and optimizes hormones.

You can anticipate feeling better, looking better, and improving your quality of life if you take the time to move heavy objects that dont fight back!

So call me a meathead or gym rat I am OK with that just get to the gym and lift weights. You, your spouse, your family, and everyone else you deal with will appreciate it!

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Hormone Replacement Therapy – The Sharp Clinic

At Sharp Clinic, our mission is to provide each patient with individualized care to have a more healthy, youthful and vigorous mind and body. Dr. Patrick Sharp, a renowned and recognized age management doctor, has extensive training in a comprehensive, evidence based approach to age management.

Cenegenics is a proactive, preventive approach to aging. It is about having the healthiest body and cognitive abilities at every age. People are living longer than ever before, and want to make the most of their years. Overall health, well-being, and longevity is the medical care of the future. The Sharp Clinic in Tulsa Oklahoma provides individualized health regimens to help the patient accomplish exactly that.

There are many reasons people look into hormone replacement therapy and treatment of an age management doctor. Your body might not be keeping up with your mental abilities and goals in life. Maybe youve heard about the supplement TA 65 and how it can deter the aging process, or youre suffering from low T (low testosterone), which can occur in men as they age and cause a decline in overall health. For these reasons and more, you may be considering hormone replacement therapy to slow down and possibly reverse the aging process.

At Sharp Clinic, we are more than just a hormone replacement center. We include nutrition and exercise, and evaluate your overall health. Sharp Clinics doctors believe its about creating a health-conscious lifestyle that will diminish the effects of aging and allow you to live the life you love for many more years to come. Global leader Cenegenics Medical Institute and Tulsa physician Patrick Sharp, DO partnered to launch Tulsa Oklahomas first age management medical center, where they work to prevent problems on the front end, rather than waiting for them to arise and then treat them.

The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will interest her or his patients in the care of the human frame, in a proper diet, and in the cause and prevention of disease. Thomas Edison, US Inventor 1847-1931

At age 43 I began to see a decline in both my strength and endurance. I felt like I was in great physical shape however I was losing my edge. A colleague recommended I see Dr. Sharp based on his reputation and their results. I was most impressed by the depth of the examination and the review of my health evaluation. Dr. Sharps wellness regimen proved to me that I had not reached my potential both mentally and physically. With the help of a nutritionist, Dr. Sharp has customized a diet plan that has changed the way I look and feel. I recommend Dr. Sharp to all my friends and patients. B.W., Age 44

When I first came to Dr. Sharp, I was a typical middle-aged guy who had let his body gradually fall apart. In the first year of his care, my body fat dropped, my stamina improved and I felt like ten years had been shaved off. Since then my physical and mental have continued to improve. Dr. Sharp and Cenegenics deliver results. -J.M., Age 60

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New study shows transgender actors effective in teaching new doctors to provide respectful care – LGBT Weekly

Posted by Steve Lee, Editor Around the Nation, Online Only, Top Highlights Saturday, June 17th, 2017

NEW YORK By acting out scenarios commonly seen in the clinic, real-life transgender actors can help residents learn to provide more sensitive care to people with a different gender identity than the one they were assigned at birth. This is the main finding of a study published online June 15 in the Journal of Graduate Medical Education.

The opportunity to interact with a transgender patient in a low-stakes setting during medical training increased trainees comfort during future real-world outpatient encounters, says Richard E. Greene, MD, lead author of the study, from NYU Langone Medical Center. Even those who had baseline knowledge of care for transgender patients before the study found that learning in this safe, simulated way added value in helping them provide more sensitive care for transgender patients, adds Greene, an assistant professor in the Department of Medicine at NYU Langone.

As NYU Langones director of gender and health education, Greene designed the current study after many conversations with transgender patients who reported feeling discomfort, discrimination, and insensitivity in health care settings.

To study the problem, the research team employed a common teaching strategy that uses a standardized patient, an average person trained to consistently portray a patient in a certain medical situation. Each trainee in a class interviews the patient, seeking to determine the persons medical needs, communicate options, and offer reassurance. The new NYU research is one of the first published studies to employ transgender persons as standardized patients.

For the study, a transgender actress/standardized patient, who acted out a common outpatient scenario, rated the 23 internal medicine residents on their ability to communicate and to leave the patient satisfied with the interaction. The average scores using a newly designed behavioral measure achieved by the residents were 89 percent for overall communication and 85 percent for satisfaction.

Interestingly, the scores did not differ significantly from those achieved in nine control cases in which the standardized patients were not transgender. This suggests that transgender standardized patients can be just as effective as straight cisgender (or non-transgender) patients in teaching doctors, says Greene.

In the specific clinical scenario used in the study, the transgender actress was taking the anti-androgen hormone spironolactone for reducing masculinization, along with the feminizing hormone estradiol. She also came in for hypertension and had dangerously high blood levels of potassium, a condition known as hyperkalemia. The patient then expressed the desire to undergo an orchiectomy, a procedure for removing the testicles.

The residents were tasked with exploring and respecting the patients treatment goals, given her hormonal transition hormone therapy, and to make a plan for managing her hypertension and hyperkalemia. Additionally, the researchers wanted to see whether the residents asked questions that indicated sensitivity, like a patients preferred pronoun and gender identity, as well as to learn whether the discussion covered sexuality, sexual activity, and associated risks.

The results indicate that good communications skills helped some residents overcome their lack of transgender-specific clinical acumen and that going through this scenario training with a transgender actress helped them to shed preconceptions and be better prepared for the clinic.

On the other hand, most residents in the study did not directly address the patients gender identity and long-term goals of care, says Greene. This underscores the need to include transgender standardized patients in our teaching and curricula. Without them, a substantial gap in care remains.

A 2016 Williams Institute analysis of federal data found that 1.4 million adults identify as transgender across the United States. This figure is double that found a decade earlier.

In addition to Dr. Greene, Kathleen Hanley, MD, Tiffany E. Cook, BGS, Colleen Gillespie, PhD, and Sondra Zabar, MD, all from NYU, were study coauthors. Health Resources Services Administration Grant #T0BHP285770100 provided funding for this research.

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New study shows transgender actors effective in teaching new doctors to provide respectful care - LGBT Weekly

Addressing baldness in women – Ibcworldnews

Addressing baldness in women

The sight of hair loss can be very worrying for a woman, at times making her lose confidence. Greater the stress, greater the hair loss. Pattern baldness is a serious concern amongst women.Dr Premalatha, DermatologistofHairline International Hair & Skin Clinictalks about hormone induced hair loss in women and the myths surrounding hair transplants.

It concerns changes in the level of androgens, the male hormones and alteration in female hormone levels.In PCOD(polycystic ovarian disease),women find hair on their head getting thinner while hair on their face gets coarser. Too much androgen brings in abnormal new hair growth, such as on the face, between the belly button and pubic area. One can see these signs by observing changes in menstrual periods. Another sign would be new acne formations. Procedures such as scalp analysis andblood tests can diagnose the cause ofhair loss in women. Another factor leading to hair loss is too much or too little of Thyroid hormone. The danger associated with female pattern baldness is that hair loss is permanent if not treated.

Q. Can you comment about the condition of hair in women during the time of pregnancy and delivery? After pregnancy and delivery, a phenomenon known as Telogen Effluvium is observed. It occurs due to many other reasons as well, like drastic weight loss, major surgery or high levels of stress.This phenomenon involves shedding of large amounts of hair each day, during shampooing, styling or brushing.Women experiencing the phenomenon witness large amounts of hair being shed usually 6 weeks to 3 months after a stressful event, like a pregnancy. At the peak of this condition, handfuls of hair may be lost. In order to find evidence to diagnose someone with Telogen Effluvium, doctors may look for small club-shaped bulbs on the fallen hair roots. The presence of the bulbs indicates that the hair has gone through a complete cycle of growth, suggesting the cycle may have sped up due to stress, because of pregnancy. The only thing one can do when experiencing Telogen Effluvium is wait until the hair loss slows down. Also other contributing factors such as stress related problems can be tackled by reducing anxiety through meditation and other recommended ways.

Q. The obvious answer to patterned chronic hair loss here is hair transplant. Can you tell us a bit about how it works? Both medical and surgical line of management should be considered.Hair transplant is a method of hair redistribution wherein hair is removed from areas on the scalp and placed on areas which are balding. Minor scars may appear on the areas where hair is removed, but the end result is permanent. Other solutions such as a change in hairstyle, or hair weaving, can also be utilized to improve appearance.Very few people however have the courage to undergo the treatment, even though latest researches show that market for hair transplantation is growing rapidly. Many myths surround this treatment, preventing people suffering from pattern balding from giving it a try.

Q. Can we discuss some of them? The method of hair transplant is holistic and all round yields good results. But people have false notions about it. A common myth is that old people cannot undergo treatment, preventing old people from undergoing it. Age has nothing to do with it. The texture and quality of your existing hair determines whether or not you are suitable for it.

Also, some people believe hair transplant is only possible at the initial stages of hair loss. On the contrary, it is actually the opposite. It is in fact more difficult to predict in the initial stages the extent of hair loss and whether you require treatment. It makes more sense to go to the physician when hair loss gets stable.The treatment does not give immediate results. The patient generally sees results after about 8 months, and the head filling with hair within 9-12 months.

Another myth is that surgery affects the brain. There is no connection whatsoever. Surgery involves only the skin of your scalp. There is no contact with any part of the brain.Lastly, a common misconception is that surgery leaves no scars. This is untrue. Every hair restoration technique leaves scars on the scalp. Surgery however reduces these scars to a formation of multiple dots. However, scarring is minimal and almost invisible even if you are completely bald.

Q. Concerns exist on affordability of the surgery. What is your comment?

Cost of surgery depends on a number of factors, especially the number of grafts to be transplanted. It can be a little costly, but definitely affordable. Most hair transplant clinics offer options of paying in instalments.

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List of Weight Loss "Compliments" to Avoid Highlights the Complexities of Weight Loss, Says Dr. Feiz & Associates – Benzinga

The Southern California weight loss surgery clinic notes that defeating obesity is always healthful, but rarely simple.

Los Angeles, California (PRWEB) June 14, 2017

A June 8th article on Madame Noire offers a list of alleged compliments that can actually be taken as insults by people who have successfully managed to lose a significant amount of weight. While many of these observations can be made with the most benign intentions, the article notes that the complexities of weight loss make saying something like "Look how much weight she lost! Doesn't she look great?" can place undue attention on people who, generally speaking, just want to be left alone and accepted for who they are. Weight loss surgery specialists Dr. Feiz & Associates notes the article points up the reality that weight loss, with or without a surgical procedure, is more than just a physical change. It's a very personal matter that involves a complex interplay between physiological and psychological factors.

Dr. Feiz & Associates notes that many people assume weight loss surgery is an almost semi-magical procedure which actually causes fat to disappear on its own. In reality, such procedures as a sleeve gastrectomy work by creating physical changes that have psychological impacts. Specifically, the procedure removes approximately 75-85% of the stomach. The impact is twofold because the small stomach makes overeating physically uncomfortable but, perhaps more importantly, it also reduces the production of a hormone called ghrelin, which "tells" the brain that it's time to eat. The substance is believed to be largely responsible for creating the nagging hungry feelings that drives overweight people to continue eating, even when they know for a fact that they have consumed more than enough food; worse, ghrelin production tends to increase as individuals lose weight. Dr. Feiz & Associates says that, while sleeve gastrectomies do make weight loss a great deal easier, patients still have to muster the psychological energy to permanently change their approach to food and eating.

Dr. Feiz & Associates notes that the challenges involved with obesity and weight loss can lead to sensitivities that may well linger even after the additional weight has gone. They add that, for patients, this means realizing that they will have to address these matters, perhaps with the help of a coach or therapist, and develop a new relationship not only with food, but with their body. For friends and family of people who appear to be successfully dealing with their obesity, it means that a certain amount of sensitivity will be required, says the weight loss clinic.

Readers who would like to learn more about Dr. Feiz & Associates and if weight loss surgery might be right for them are invited to call (800) 868-5946. They can also the visit the clinic via the web at

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List of Weight Loss "Compliments" to Avoid Highlights the Complexities of Weight Loss, Says Dr. Feiz & Associates - Benzinga

Sinclair Cares: New recommendations about PSA test – Turn to 10

Dr. Stephen Eulau speaks with cancer patient Michael Pastula (KOMO-TV)

A year ago, Michael Pastula felt perfectly healthy. His only indication that something might be wrong was a blood test that showed elevated levels of a protein, indicating possible prostate cancer.

"You'll never know unless you're looking for it. And you need to look for it. You need to look for it," Pastula said.

The prostate-specific antigen -- or PSA -- test is a simple blood draw with quick results. Eight years ago, a government task force recommended against it, saying it led to unnecessary treatment.

In new draft recommendations, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force say men 55 to 69 years old should talk to their doctors to decide if PSA screening is right for them.

They still warn that screening could lead to potential misdiagnosis and treatment that could cause impotence and urinary incontinence.

But the panel also says new evidence supports the benefits of screening, including reducing the chance of dying from prostate cancer and catching it before cancer spreads to other parts of the body.

Dr. Stephen Eulau, a radiation oncology specialist in Seattle, said he is happy to see the more open-minded approach.

"It's really, really important that the patient and the doctor have a conversation in a collaborative way so they can form a partnership in making this decision. It's very important to recognize that we're not just looking at a blood test. We're looking at a patient," Eulau said.

Pastula's cancer was aggressive, spreading to his lymph nodes and bladder.

"If you don't have something like a PSA test to give you at least an indication that something's going on, then people are going to die from this," Pastula said.

Pastula had surgery and was undergoing radiation.

"I think you have an excellent opportunity to cure this cancer," Eulau said.

"I'd be happy about that," Pastula responded.

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A new safe place for the LGBT community – Viet Nam News

Viet Nam News

Gia Lc

HCM CITY Eight years ago, a 24-year-old man from the Mekong Delta Province of ng Thp, who identified as gay at the time, decided he wanted to change his gender.

But he didnt know where to turn for advice.

I felt like a girl inside. Psychologically, thats how I felt, he said last Sunday during an interview at a signing ceremony for a new health clinic for the LGBT community in HCM City.

I could easily buy hormones from people who had visited Thailand for sex-change surgery. Hormones and that kind of surgery are still not available in Vit Nam, he said.

Changes in the national law, however, are expected to occur within several years, as the Ministry of Healths legal affairs department is working with several government agencies to compile a Law on Gender Transition.

The law is expected to allow sex-change surgery under certain criteria and include more detailed provisions about transgender people than what is in the current civil code. It will be submitted to the National Assembly next year, but may not take effect for another two to five years.

In 2015, the 24-year-old from ng Thp, who now identifies as a transgender woman, chose to have cosmetic surgery on her face, nose and breasts at a private beauty salon in Vit Nam.

Prior to the surgery, she began injecting hormones from a 0.5-millilitre tube every week for one year to help develop breasts, shrink muscle mass and reduce body hair.

After the cosmetic surgery, I continued to inject hormones, but only one tube every two weeks. I did not have any health problems from the injections.

However, my friends, who had gone through gender transition, had problems from overdoses because they did not go to a doctor, but just listened to advice from friends, she said.

They had vomiting and spinal pain, and at times felt dizzy. Others even had bleeding after returning to Vit Nam from Thailand where they had sex-change surgery.

Many of her friends did not want to go to Vietnamese health facilities because they felt uncomfortable, facing inquisitive eyes, she said.

Dr Tr Anh Duy of Bnh Dn Hospital in HCM City said that such unsupervised practices by people who fear discrimination are dangerous.

They can overdose or use substandard hormones, or those without clear origin. They also may not be using hormones in a hygienic way, he added.

Safe place

However, with a new dedicated centre for LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) community, people who need counselling now have a place to go.

Though based in HCM City, the new centre will offer counselling to anyone in the country.

Patients in the LGBT community and those who have HIV can call the centre to receive counselling and monitoring of their health while taking hormones or after sex-change surgery performed outside the country.

The agreement to co-operate to provide counselling services was signed last Sunday between the Mens Health Center and G-Link, a social enterprise providing comprehensive health care and communication to improve societys awareness about transgender women and men who have sex with men.

The clinic will offer free counselling abouttherapy, examinations and treatments, all of which will be offered at low cost, to the LGBT community and people diagnosed with HIV. Foreigners who live and work in the country can also access the services.

The Mens Health Center will provide free HIV tests and free screening for sexually transmitted diseases such as gonorrhoea and syphilis. For those who test positive for HIV, G-Link will offer treatment assistance by connecting them with public health facilities which provide antiretroviral therapy.

Many people in the LGBT community have already called the centre and contacted staff via its website at, and its Facebook fanpage at

A 23-year-old man, who identified as MSM (men who have sex with men), said the clinic will be very useful and convenient for us.

According to the UK National Health Services guide to hormone therapy for trans people, blood tests must be taken to assess a patients health before hormone therapy. Doctors regularly test patients to see if they are absorbing the medicine and monitor any health problems. Hormone treatment can be adjusted or additional medication may be prescribed.

The Ministry of Health estimates that Vit Nam has 270,000 to 300,000 people who want to have transition to another gender.

As part of the countrys Civil Code issued in 2015, the Law on Civil Status addresses gender transition rights and the definition of transgender people.

Accordingly, individuals who have gone through gender transition have rights and responsibility to register their gender change. They have the right to redefine gender in case of congenital defects or indeterminate sex at birth and have medical intervention, according to a provision in the current Law on Civil Status.

The proposed Law on Gender Transition, however, is expected to extend those rights and will contain detailed provisions about citizens access to hormonal treatment and sex-change surgery.VNS

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A new safe place for the LGBT community - Viet Nam News

This Is Why Your Boobs Get Sore When You’re On Your Period – Elite Daily

You know what its like.

Your breasts are so tender, the slightest touch brings you a surge of discomfort.

You cant enjoy sex like you usually do because, well, easy on the nipples, please.

To say the least, theres a lot going on during your menstrual cycle. Your uterus is shedding its wall, your hormone levels are unpredictably rising and falling, and your body is literally preparing for fertilization (honestly, the female anatomy sounds like a heroic machine).

But the sore boob situation, which 72 percent of women deal with every month, is just too much for this heroic machine to handle. I need some answers, and I need them now.

If you and your sore boobs are also in need of some answers, heres why your chesticles are aching so much when youre on your period.

It really is as simple as that.

In the beginning of your cycle, estrogen increases and then peaksright before your mid-cycle, which causes your breast ducts to enlarge.

Couple that with your bodys production of progesterone, which leads toswollen milk glands, and voil, youre sore AF.

Fibrocystic breast condition (FBC) essentially causes your breasts feel so tender and lumpy thatit hurts to hug someone.

But, dont worry, theres no need to freak out if you have FBC. Those lumps may be large and super uncomfortable, but theyre completely benign, and theyllshrink once youre done menstruating.

Plus, youre not alone.According to Mayo Clinic, more than half of women will experience these types of changes in their breastsat some point in their lives.

For women with simple hormone fluctuations, feel free to tell people to kindly stay away from your chesticles until the soreness goes away.

However, for more advanced relief, over-the-counter medicine can be a great option. In an interview with Elite Daily, Dr. Jennifer Wider, M.D., author ofThe Savvy Woman Patient,provides somekey tips on what to look for in your medication.

Dr. Wider suggests,

You can do a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication, which is a non-prescription medication like acetaminophen [Tylenol] or ibuprofen.

Dr. Wider also recommendstaking the medication even before it starts, and that will help prevent the pain, especially if women are joggers, or have large breasts, or the pain gets in the way of their daily functioning.

Magnesium supplements, which can be purchased over the counter as well, can also help relieve cyclic breast pain by lowering inflammation and reducing tenderness, says Dr. Wider.

Dr. Wider explains,

For some women, birth control pills can reduce breast pain and swelling before a period. The synthetic hormones get in the way of the bodys natural hormonal fluctuations. This may help reduce pain for some women.

However, she says, birth control is kind of a weird thing.

She continues,

Some women would say that birth control actually increases the breast pain. What birth control does and the symptoms it can alleviate, may vary by person.

According to Dr. Wider, many women simply arent wearing the right bra for the size of their breasts.

She stresses the importance of payingattention to how a bra feels on your body. Do the straps feel uncomfortably tight? Are you getting enough support from your cup size?

She says,

You may want to wear a sports bra or something that allows the breasts to swell without confining them, and that may help alleviate the pain a little bit.

Ultimately, Dr. Wider says its extremely important toknow the state of your breasts:

Its so important to do the proper exams. This way, if anything changes, youre a patient that can bring any change to the attention of a health care practitioner.

Dont be afraid to approach your doctor regarding pain relief options.

Remember, your body is heroic.If your body deserves anything, it deserves relief.

Subscribe to Elite Daily's official newsletter, The Edge, for more stories you don't want to miss.

Imani Brammer is a writer, on-air talent and YouTuber, where she produces videos on how to navigate the nuances of adulthood. Subscribe to her channel at

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Diabetes Breakthrough: Insulin-Delivery System Manages Blood Sugar – Newsmax

Diabetics have had insulin pumps and sensors available for the past 10 years, but new research on Medtronics MiniMed670G hybrid system means that pumps and sensors can now talk to each other. The result: newfound freedom for people with Type I diabetes.

Claire Bickel, a Connecticut teenager who is just finishing her freshman year of high school, became the first pediatric patient to get the new device as part of a company trial of the system. She was diagnosed with Type I diabetes just before her fifth birthday. The diagnosis has meant years of constant worry for her mother, Francesca Bickel.

Her doctor pediatric endocrinologist, Dr. Jennifer Sherr at Yale New Haven Childrens Hospitals diabetes clinic also suffered a lifetime with Type I diabetes. And when Medtronic developed the new pump she was included in the trial.

After years of waking up at night to check and correct her blood sugar, the pump which monitors and adjusts glucose levels continuously allowed her to get a full nights sleep.

I was like, Oh my God! This is what sleep is! she tells Newsmax Health. My kids told me I was nicer just because I was sleeping at night.

Our bodies are not pre-programmed for stress, exercise and food, and, so something that recognizes these changes is phenomenal.

The device is particularly beneficial for younger diabetics, she notes.

Its so important for pediatrics because we have worked tirelessly to keep Claires life normal, Sherr says. Often times she and her mother would be up at night checking her blood sugar. Now her sleep is better, her school work is better, and shes enjoying being in a play at school.

The sensor works with a tiny catheter with a needle, under the skin, which detects glucose in the fluid that surrounds skin tissues. Past insulin pumps gave pre-set amounts of the hormone, or different levels for different times of the day. You had to tell them to give extra insulin depending on how many carbs you ate.

But the new device constantly monitors blood sugar levels and insulin delivery to correct them is automatic. The catheter is changed every seven days and the pump is changed every two or three days.

It is still a lot for a patient to worry about, but it is a massive change in the diabetes paradigm, Sherr says.

Francesca Bickel notes the old pump her daughter used to use required a lot of work.

There was constant decision making and troubleshooting every day, she says. This takes some of that away and Claire can focus on being a teenager.

This new pump takes a lot of the burden off of going low. It does what the older pumps couldnt do. Its not a total closed loop where you never have to worry, so if your blood sugar shoots up fast, it cant adjust for that. But Claires blood sugar is low a lot less often because it is better regulated. Without activity, at night, the pump does an amazing job.

Type I diabetes is an autoimmune disease that kills insulin-producing cells in the pancreas. Insulin is the hormone that allows the body to process and store glucose. This new technology, allowing the sensor to communicate with the pump, is a real game changer for people living with Type I diabetes.

Sherr, an assistant professor of pediatric endocrinology at the Yale School of Medicine, notes Yale was chosen as a site for launching the 670G system because the university has experience in training individuals.

Claire was a good candidate for the first pediatric patient on the system because she has been very involved in her diabetes care. More than 26,000 people in the U.S. have Type I diabetes, and about 900 patients being treated at Yales clinic

2017 NewsmaxHealth. All rights reserved.

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Diabetes Breakthrough: Insulin-Delivery System Manages Blood Sugar - Newsmax

This Doctor Says He Can Reverse Abortions – Mother Jones

And pro-life lawmakers are taking notice.

Nina Liss-SchultzJun. 9, 2017 6:00 AM

So-called crisis pregnancy centers are well known for trying to convince women not to end their pregnancies. But George Delgado, a physician with a crisis pregnancy center called Culture of Life Family Services clinic in San Diego, takes the practice a step further: He claims to have developed a technique to reverse the effects of a pill-induced abortion. Have you taken the first dose of the ABORTION PILLDo you regret your decision and wish you could reverse the effects of the abortion pill? reads the website of the project Delgado started. We are waiting to help you! The promotional language suggests that, with some strong and timely doses of the hormone progesterone, women can stop the abortion and carry the pregnancy to term: IT MAY NOT BE TOO LATE, IF YOU CALL QUICKLY.

The only problem, according to several doctors I spoke to, is that there is scant medical evidence that the procedure works. Based only on anecdotal accounts from pro-life doctors and a small case study, the abortion pill reversal protocol is experimental at best, they say. But that hasnt stopped conservative state legislatures from trying to push through laws requiring doctors tell their patients that, should they regret their abortions, they might be able to undo them.

A medication abortion typically involves two drugs. The first, mifepristone, which is administered in a doctors office, ends the pregnancy, and the second, misoprostol, which the woman takes at home, expels it from her body. Since 2000, when the Food and Drug Administration approved mifepristone sales, medication abortions have soared in popularity for women less than three months into their pregnancy. In 2014, abortion with mifepristone and misoprostol accounted for about a third of all abortions in the United States. Its also a target of anti-abortion advocates, who call it dangerous (major complications result in less than0.4 percent of all cases) and say that it contributes to an abortion-on-demand culture.

The abortion pill reversal protocol was born in 2009, when Delgado got a call about a woman in Texas who changed her mind after taking mifepristone. Then the medical director of Culture of Life Family Services, Delgado reasoned that progesterone, a hormone given to pregnant women to prevent miscarriage, might help. He found a Texas physician who agreed to give the woman progesterone injections. According to Delgado, it worked, and the woman carried the pregnancy to term.

After that, says Delgado, more requests started coming in. In 2012, Delgado co-authored a case study reviewing the experiences of six women whod contacted him for abortion reversals after taking mifepristone. Each were given doses of progesterone, which latches onto the same hormone receptors as mifepristone, and four of the six carried pregnancies to term. Through the study, Delgado got in touch with a North Carolina doctor, Matthew Harrison, who claims he oversaw the first successful reversal in 2007. Together they created the Abortion Pill Reversal group, which boasts foundational principles such as, It is reasonable and appropriate to respect a womans right to choose to reverse a medical induced abortion.

Through the group, which runs a hotline and prints testimonials from anonymous women whove reversed their abortionsnot following through with the abortion pill has been a tremendous blessingDelgado and Harrison say theyve amassed a network of over 350 doctors and mid-level practitioners across the country willing to try abortion reversal with progesterone. According to Delgado, the group has taken more than 2,000 calls and saved nearly 300 babies. We are very excited to give women this second chance at choice, he told me.

Word of Delgados technique soon spread to lawmakers. Americans United for Life, the influential anti-abortion advocacy group, wrote model legislation for abortion pill reversal. Testifying in front of an Arizona legislative committee in 2015, Dr. Allan Sawyer opined that women should not have their babies stolen from them just because they arent getting accurate information about their abortions. Thats why, said Sawyer, the former president of an anti-abortion OB-GYN group, he wants the state to ensure that doctors inform women that if a woman changes her mind it may be possible to reverse her medication abortion.

Less than a month later, Arizona became the first state to pass an abortion-pill reversal law requiring physicians who offer medication abortion to tell their patients that, should they come to regret their decisions, they might be able to undo them. Arkansas followed suit with a similar law. In 2016, South Dakota enacted an abortion reversal law, and this year, four more states introduced similar bills. The measures are similar to many other restrictions on abortion access and care that pro-life groups have pushedabout350 since 2010and play on the same tropes: Women regret their abortions, according to anti-abortion groups, and so if theyre given information and time to think about what theyre doing, they might change their mind.

But many doctors and medical experts have pointed to a number of problems with the technique. The leading medical association for obstetricians and gynecologists wrote of the 2015 Arizona bill: claims of medication abortion reversal are not supported by the body of scientific evidence. In a review of the literature on mifepristone, Dr. Daniel Grossman and others point out that Delgados study did not have approval from an institutional review board, which usually monitors research involving human subjects. Nor does the study actually make the case that the womens pregnancies continued because of the mifepristone; as Grossman explains, taking mifepristone alonewithout misoprostolcan result in a continued pregnancy up to 46 percent of the time, depending on the dosage and the gestational age of the fetus. In other words, doing nothing after taking mifepristone might be as effective as the progesterone doses.

Everyone I know who provides abortion would try to determine whether or not someone is feeling ambivalentthats a critical part of providing good care, says Karen Meckstroth, and OB-GYN at an abortion clinic in San Francisco. I dont think its wrong to talk to people about reversal as a theoretical possibility. But it could cause real harm if its not true.

Grossman, Meckstroth, and a third doctor, Matthew Zerden, at Planned Parenthood South Atlantic, all said that passing laws based on a single, and problematic, study leads to bad medicine. Zerden, whose Planned Parenthood affiliate has clinics in North Carolina, says that women receiving abortion care are already informed that they have other options, and that women must consultwith a nurse or doctor 72 hours before their abortion appointment because of a waiting period law in the state. The vast majority of patients dont change their mind, he says. Its extremely patronizing, what Delgado is insinuating. Indeed, a 2015 study of nearly 700 women found that 95 percent of women who got abortions reported that it was the right decision three years later.

Delgado counters that the method makes biologic sense and that further criticism of our work isnt warranted. In an interview with Mother Jones, Delgado pointed to what he called the three pillars that back up abortion pill reversal: first, the fact that progesterone interacts with the same hormone receptors as mifepristone, thereby, at least theoretically, canceling out the effects of the abortion drug (Grossman points out that mifepristone is known to bind more tightly to those receptors than progesterone). Second, Delgado points to a Japanese study involving pregnant rats who were given mifepristone and progesterone and did not abort. The third pillar, Delgado says, are the two new studies his team is publishing this year. One of those studies, which has not yet been submitted for peer review, will look at the hundreds of cases the group has documented since 2012, according to Delgado.

So far, none of the abortion reversal bills introduced this year have become law. And the Arizona measure never took effect and was ultimately struck down in court. After Delgado testified in support of Colorados bill in February, it was defeated in committee. Other measures in North Carolina, Indiana, and Georgia, have been stalled in committee.

But anti-abortion advocates are not giving up on lobbying lawmakersand in the meantime Meckstroth fears the procedure could do more harm than good. Its very experimental and its completely inappropriate to recommend it, says Meckstroth. For it to become law or a recommendation with no research is unfair to women.

Nina Liss-Schultz is the research editor at Mother Jones. You can reach her at

Mother Jones is a nonprofit, and stories like this are made possible by readers like you. Donate or subscribe to help fund independent journalism.

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This Doctor Says He Can Reverse Abortions - Mother Jones

New Clinic Fills Need for LGBT-focused Care – Hospitals & Health Networks

Hospitals & Health Networks
New Clinic Fills Need for LGBT-focused Care
Hospitals & Health Networks
The clinic, now in its fourth month, offers specialized primary care services for the LGBT community, including hormone therapy and monitoring, HIV care, and referrals for specialty services. It also provides support for family members, health ...

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New Clinic Fills Need for LGBT-focused Care - Hospitals & Health Networks

3-D Mammograms And Molecular Breast Imaging Personalized … – HuffPost

This article is authored by the Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine. The mission of the Center is to discover and integrate the latest in genomic, molecular and clinical sciences into personalized care for patients.

A picture is worth a thousand words. While that saying may be true, for the more than 50 percent of all women who have dense breast tissue, a picture from traditional, 2-D mammography may not tell the full story about whether they have breast cancer.

Breast density is like the wolf in sheeps clothing. Both tumors and dense breast tissue appear white on a mammogram. A traditional 2-D mammogram may not distinguish between the two. Thats why mammograms find as few as 40 percent of cancers in women with dense breasts, says Deborah Rhodes, M.D., a Mayo Clinic Breast Clinic physician.

If tumors are obscured by dense tissue on a mammogram, the tumor may go undetected for a year or longer during which time the tumor will grow which is a significant problem when you consider how closely survival from breast cancer is linked to tumor size at diagnosis. If we discover a tumor when it is less than 1 centimeter, that patient has over a 90 percent chance of surviving. If we could reliably find tumors in dense tissue when they are small, more lives could be saved," adds Dr. Rhodes.

In addition to dense breast tissue masking tumors on a mammogram, research has shown that women with dense breast tissue have a higher risk of developing breast cancer. Many states have now passed legislation mandating that women found to have dense breasts on a mammogram be provided with information about the impact of breast density on breast cancer detection and risk.

Because both Minnesota and Arizona have this legislation, and because national guidelines on breast cancer screening differ, Mayo Clinic breast specialists developed consensus guidelines for breast cancer screening in women with dense breasts.

Bringing dense breast tissue into focus - 3-D mammograms and molecular breast imaging (MBI)

In order to provide the best screening to detect breast cancer, Mayo Clinic physicians recommend that women with dense breasts initially have a 3-D mammogram and be given the option to have further screening with molecular breast imaging (MBI).

Dense breast tissue what you should know

Women with dense breast tissue have a higher proportion of dense tissue compared to fatty tissue in their breasts. You can find out whether you have dense breast tissue by talking with your physician and reading your mammogram report.

Factors that lead to women having dense breasts include:

Adjusting the lens researchers work to refine screening tools

Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine has supported development of molecular breast imaging as an individualized approach to cancer screening and will continue to support research that refines this technology in order to provide patients with dense breast tissue the best care.

Our goal is to identify the best tool to screen for and diagnose cancer at its earliest stages, when it is more treatable. By finding the best individualized care for women with dense breasts, I think we can greatly reduce the number of breast cancers diagnosed when they are already advanced - cancers that were not visible on an x-ray. We have already demonstrated that MBI can detect many cancers including advanced cancers that were not seen on traditional 2-D mammography. Our future research will continue to evaluate the effectiveness of 3-D mammograms and MBI. While this research is ongoing and important, MBI is available now as a tool for women who seek additional screening because they have dense breasts, says Dr. Rhodes.

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3-D Mammograms And Molecular Breast Imaging Personalized ... - HuffPost

St. Louis Clinic Introduces Weight Loss Breakthrough – Benzinga

Conventional weight loss strategies are leaving people frustrated and unsuccessful in an era of processed foods, chemicals, and hormone disruptions. A new approach at Balanced Body Health Center, LLC is having patients shed 15-20 lbs of fat per month by adapting the body's ability to process these stresses.

St. Louis, MO (PRWEB) June 04, 2017

Sadly, our allopathic, insurance-based medical model for health care hasn't found a sustainable way to rid itself of Diabetes, weight gain, and the toll obesity has on our health. Instead, people are getting sicker, more inflamed, and more dependent on medications. A St. Louis clinic has taken upon itself to break this mold and offer a simple solution for people to live more vibrant and happy livesand get leaner in the process!

Functional Nutritionist, Dr. De Geer, explains 95% of diets don't work. Most people try to research weight loss strategies on their own and there's the infamous yo-yo effect where a person loses weight only to regain it later. A myth that consistently fails to explain the overweight epidemic is: weight problems are merely a consequence of taking in too many calories and not burning enough. A physician's typical advice regarding this issue is: "eat less and exercise more." This limited approach fails to touch upon hormones, toxins, food choices, inflammation, stress, and gut health.

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At Balanced Body Health Center, LLC patients are educated on these factors and follow guidelines that result in 15-20 lbs of fat loss per month on average. Here, a person initially meets with a physician to casually discuss health and weight loss goals and to uncover metabolic roadblocks they may be facing. Most people live a lifestyle that promotes fat storage while shutting down pathways to access this later for energy.

Dr. De Geer explains fat cells accumulate hormones and toxins. "The more fat we have, the more hormonal problems and toxin-related issues we can face." Fat cells are also prime targets for hormone-disrupting chemicals that can increase the number and size of fat cells.

Another common condition gaining media attention is leaky gut. With leaky gut, the digestive tract lining breaks down, stimulating the release of inflammatory molecules. This downregulates the breakdown of fat cells and stimulates the production of more fat cells. These two mechanisms lead to an inability to lose weight. Also, those who are obese tend to have a less diverse collection of gut bacteria than those who maintain a healthy weight.

Balanced Body Health Center, LLC takes an innovative approach at removing toxins, controlling inflammation and completely transforming patients' lives. For an effective strategy on how lose weight, visit or call (314) 541-8188 to schedule a consultation.

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St. Louis Clinic Introduces Weight Loss Breakthrough - Benzinga

Male Breast Cancer: Less Common Than For Women, But Still Serious – Health Essentials from Cleveland Clinic (blog)

Contributor: Jame Abraham, MD

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Its not unusual for a patient to ask if men can get breast cancer, and the answer to the question is yes. In 2017, about 2,470 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed, and about 460 men will die from breast cancer, according to the American Cancer Society.

But breast cancer is about 100 times less common among men than among women. For men, the lifetime risk of getting breast cancer is about 1 in 1,000. The number of breast cancer cases in males relative to the population has been fairly stable over the last 30 years.

The most common symptoms of male breast cancer are:

There are myriad risk factors that increase the odds of a man developing breast cancer, but many men will develop the disease without experiencing any of these. Many risk factors are similar for men and women, including age, family history and genetic mutations.

One risk factor that increases the risk of breast cancer for both men and women is aging. In general, the risk of breast cancer goes up as a man ages, with an average age of diagnosis of 68.

Family history is important, too, as breast cancer risk is higher if other members of the family have had the disease. About 20 percent of men with breast cancer have a family history of it.

Genetic mutations, such as the BRCA2 gene, increase the risk of breast cancer for anyone, with a lifetime risk of 6 in 100. BRCA1 mutations, in particular, can increase the risk for breast cancer in men; the risk is about 1 in 100. Other important mutations are the CHEK2 and PTEN genes, which may be responsible for some breast cancers in men.

Theres a congenital condition called Klinefelter syndrome that affects 1 in 1,000 men. In normal men, the cells have a single X chromosome with a Y chromosome, while womens cells have two X chromosomes. Men with Klinfelter syndrome have cells with a Y chromosome, plus at least two X chromosomes. These men also have smaller-than-usual testicles, and theyre often infertile because theyre unable to produce functioning sperm cells. Compared with other men, they have lower levels of the male hormone androgen and more of the famale hormone estrogen. For this reason, they often develop swelling of the breast tissue, called gynecomastia. Some studies have shown that among men with this syndrome, the risk of getting breast cancer was about 1 percent, or 1 in 100.

Having been exposed to radiation in the past is also a risk factor for breast cancer in men. A man who had radiation to the chest for lymphoma or any other conditions has an increased risk of developing breast cancer.

Heavy alcohol consumption and liver disease increase the risk of breast cancer in men. Other risk factors include estrogen therapy or other hormonal therapy for prostate cancer, obesity, testicular condition such as undescended testis and some occupations, such as steel mill workers.

In general, the way male breast cancer is managed is similar to tactics used with female breast cancer. The disease could be diagnosed via a clinical examination, mammogram or ultrasound and, if an abnormality is found, the man will be considered for a biopsy of the lesion.

Definite treatment will include surgerythat may include removal of the breast, lump and lymph node surgery, and possibly chemotherapy and anti-estrogen therapy.

Overall prognosis depends upon the stage and other features of breast cancer.

Male breast cancer survivors face many challenges, since its a rare condition. Most of the data related to male breast cancer is derived from female breast cancer. We have only very limited data about specific treatment, prognosis and outcome of male breast cancer.

Its important for men with breast cancer to take care of themselves. This includes being compliant with their cancer treatment and having appropriate follow up.

Adopting a healthy lifestyle that includes eating healthy, exercising and avoiding tobacco and alcohol is imperative. Its a good idea to look for clinical trials; unfortunately, however, many breast cancer trials exclude men. My hope for patients is that this will change in the future.

This post is based on one of a series of articles produced by U.S. News & World Report in association with the medical experts at Cleveland Clinic.

Male Breast Cancer: Less Common Than For Women, But Still Serious - Health Essentials from Cleveland Clinic (blog)

Online access to abortion pill may be safe alternative to clinics – KFGO

Thursday, June 01, 2017 11:40 a.m. CDT

By Lisa Rapaport

(Reuters Health) - Women who dont have access to reproductive health clinics can safely use telemedicine services to consult with a doctor and get drugs to terminate their pregnancy without surgery, suggests a study of Irish women.

About one quarter of the worlds population lives in countries with highly restrictive abortion laws and where women may resort to unsafe methods to end pregnancies. This results in an estimated 43,000 deaths every year, researchers write in The BMJ.

The current study focused on 1,000 women who used an online telemedicine service to get medical abortions in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, where abortions are illegal in most circumstances.

About 95 percent of the women reported successfully terminating their pregnancies without surgical intervention using medication they received in the mail after providing their medical details and consulting with a trained helpdesk team on how to use the drug. No deaths were reported, and less than 3 percent of the women had complications that required treatment like antibiotics or blood transfusions.

The results provide the best evidence to date that medication abortion conducted entirely outside the formal healthcare setting using online telemedicine can be highly effective and safe, said lead study author Dr. Abigail Aiken, a researcher at the University of Texas at Austin.

All of the women in the study got abortion pills through Women on Web (WoW), a nonprofit organization that provides access to medical abortions early in pregnancy for women who live in countries where access to safe abortion is limited.

While Women on Web only provides medication abortion through online telemedicine in countries where abortion is restricted, the findings of our study suggest that this model may be much more widely applicable, Aiken said by email. As long as a woman does not have a contraindication to medication abortion (there are a few of these, but they are rare) and her pregnancy is at a gestational age appropriate for the approved use of the medications in her country, medication abortion using a reputable online telemedicine service may be an appropriate option if she needs or prefers it.

Surgical abortions require in-person clinic visits, but many abortions are now done with medication and a growing number of women are getting pills by consulting with doctors online even when they live in places where abortion is legal.

In the U.S., medication abortions are typically performed before 10 weeks of pregnancy with two drugs mifepristone and misoprostol that can be self-administered at home. Healthcare providers can use telemedicine to interview patients and assess potential safety issues by reviewing lab test results and ultrasounds before prescribing medication.

In a typical two-step medical abortion regimen, women first take mifepristone. This pill works by blocking the hormone progesterone, which causes the lining of the uterus to break down and makes it impossible for the pregnancy to continue. Then, a day or two later, women take misoprostol, which causes the uterus to empty.

Women may be advised to have a clinic visit afterwards to confirm that the pregnancy was successfully terminated. In rare cases when ultrasound or a blood test shows the medical abortion didnt succeed, women require surgical abortions.

In the study, 93 women, or about 9 percent, experienced a symptom that they were told required medical attention, and most of the women followed advice to visit a clinician in person.

One limitation of the study is its reliance on women to accurately recall and report any side effects or problems, the authors note.

Still, women should be reassured by the results, said Dr. Wendy Norman, a researcher at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver who co-wrote an accompanying editorial.

When a woman has access to see a clinician in person to obtain a medical abortion, that is the preferred method, Norman told Reuters Health by email. In areas where medical abortion providers are not available, or areas where abortion is legally restricted, access to a qualified clinician via telemedicine provides a reasonable alternative to discuss the current pregnancy in the context of a woman's general health and health history, consider available options for her pregnancy, and to provide management of a medical abortion from start to finish if desired.

SOURCE: and The BMJ, online May 16, 2017.

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Online access to abortion pill may be safe alternative to clinics - KFGO