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Zytiga® (abiraterone acetate) survival data in chemotherapy-naïve men with metastatic castration resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC) revealed

Data from the final analysis of the Phase 3 study COU-AA-302 have shown that Zytiga® (abiraterone acetate) plus low dose prednisolone significantly prolongs overall survival (OS) with a median life extension of 4.4 months among men with metastatic castration resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC) who have not previously been treated with chemotherapy (median OS, 34.7 vs 30.3 mos with placebo plus prednisolone; HR=0.81 [95% CI, 0.70-0.93]; p=0.0033), after a median follow-up of more than four years (49.2 months).1

The final analysis, presented at the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) conference in Madrid, is the first to demonstrate a statistically significant improvement in OS in this study. This is particularly noteworthy as men in both treatment arms received other subsequent therapy, including the 44 percent of men in the placebo plus prednisolone arm who subsequently received abiraterone plus prednisolone. The treatment effect with abiraterone was more pronounced when adjusting for 44 percent of prednisolone patients who crossed over to abiraterone (HR = 0.74).1

Commenting on the study results, Dr Alison Birtle, Consultant Clinical Oncologist at the Rosemere Cancer Centre, Royal Preston Hospital, said: “This study has previously shown that abiraterone provides an effective treatment option for patients with metastatic, hormone-resistant, disease who wish to delay or avoid chemotherapy. It has now shown that treatment with abiraterone can also add more than four months additional survival in these patients. The availability of a treatment option that can both maintain quality of life and also increase survival is a very welcome development.”

The final analysis also

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Botox injection for urinary incontinence

Botox injection for urinary incontinence


13th March 2012 – A study has found that injecting botulinum toxin A (Botox) into the wall of the bladder is an effective way of treating a debilitating condition in which people have a sudden urge to pass urine.

Overactive bladder affects up to 20% of people – mainly women – over the age of 40. It is a type of urinary problem whose other symptoms include having to go often (frequency), the need to get up in the night to use the bathroom (nocturia), and wetting accidents before reaching the toilet (incontinence).

As the name suggests, overactive bladder (OAB) is usually caused by the bladder muscle being overactive and contracting inappropriately, rather than only when it is necessary or convenient to empty the bladder. This is called detrusor overactivity, or DO.

Current treatments include pelvic floor muscle exercises, advice on fluid intake and one of a range of tablets. While these measures work for some people, a large number of patients gain little or no relief or have bad side-effects.

In the largest study into the effects of botulinum toxin on urinary incontinence, British researchers recruited 240 women with severe DO who had failed to get better after treatment with two different types of medication. Around half the women were given botulinum injections, while the remainder received a saline placebo – an inactive salt solution.

Men with incontinence: Treating managing

Bladder control

Those treated with botulinum saw the

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Baldness linked to faster-growing prostate cancers

Baldness linked to faster-growing prostate cancers

BMJ Group News

What do we know already?

balding adult man

Doctors aren’t usually able to tell what causes a man to develop prostate cancer. But there are things (called risk factors) that make it more likely. Having a particular risk factor doesn’t mean you’ll definitely get prostate cancer. It just means you’re more likely to get it than someone who doesn’t have the risk factor.

Risk factors for prostate cancer include being older, being black, or having a close male relative who has had prostate cancer. Recently there’s been some research into whether baldness is linked to prostate cancer. This could be because baldness might be linked to changes in male hormones that might also play a role in the growth of prostate cancers. There have been studies looking at the link between baldness and a man’s chances of prostate cancer, but so far they haven’t provided many clear answers.

In this study researchers looked at the link between different patterns of baldness and someone’s chances of getting prostate cancer, and in particular faster-growing, more ‘aggressive’ cancers.

How was the new study done?

Researchers looked at men who were taking part in a large study of cancer in the United States. This study included about 40,000 men aged 55 to 74, who were all healthy at the start of the study. All of the men were asked to think back and remember whether they’d had any hair loss when they

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Genetic testing can identify men at six-fold increased risk of prostate cancer

Scientists can now explain a third of the inherited risk of prostate cancer, after a major international study identified 23 new genetic variants associated with increased risk of the disease.

The study brings the total number of common genetic variants linked to prostate cancer to 100, and testing for them can identify 1% of men with a risk of the disease almost six times as high as the population average.

Scientists at The Institute of Cancer Research, London, and in Cambridge, UK, and California led a huge search for new genetic variants including almost 90,000 men and for the first time combining populations with European, African, Japanese and Latino ancestry.

The research, published in Nature Genetics, was funded in equal amounts by Cancer Research UK, Prostate Cancer UK, the EU and the National Institutes for Health in the US.

Researchers found that assessing the top 100 variants identified 10% of men with a risk almost three times as high as the population average, and said that this was high enough to investigate whether targeted genetic screening was merited. They plan to lead a new clinical trial to test whether genetic screening can be effective.

In European men, scientists had previously found 77 genetic variants which were known to increase the risk of prostate cancer.

In the new research, scientists from The Institute of Cancer Research (ICR), University of Cambridge and the University of Southern California in the US examined the genetic information of 87,040 men from all over the world.

They combined genetic population

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Accurate test for aggressive prostate cancer steps closer with genetic study

Researchers behind a new genetic study led by the University of Pittsburgh School of

Medicine, PA, suggest their findings will lead to a more accurate test for aggressive prostate

cancer and new ways to treat it.

Writing about their work in the American Journal of Pathology, the team explains how

they found prostate cancer patients with certain genetic mutations have a 91% chance of their

cancer coming back.

Senior author Jian-Hua Luo, a professor of pathology at Pitt School of Medicine who specializes

in researching the genome and gene expression of cancers, and particularly how prostate cancers

become invasive, says:

“Being able to say, with such certainty, that a patient is nearly guaranteed to see a recurrence

of his prostate cancer means that doctors and patients can elect to be more aggressive in treating

the cancer, knowing that the benefits likely outweigh the risks.”

He suggests eventually such a finding could lead to a genetic therapy that cures prostate

cancer, and adds:

“With this discovery, we’re at the tip of the iceberg in terms of possibilities for improving

patient outcomes.”

Prostate cancer treatment can be worse than the disease

Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in men (after skin cancer) and the second

leading cause of cancer death in American men, behind only lung cancer.

According to the American Cancer Society, about 1 man in 7 will be diagnosed with prostate

cancer during his lifetime.

However, despite this high rate of disease, few men diagnosed with it develop the aggressive

type that spreads, which poses

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