Health Practices in NZ
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How Cells Divide and How Chemotherapy Works

A cell is the functional basic unit of life, often called the building block of life. Humans have about 100 trillion cells. You body is constantly producing ...

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Sophie McLachlan's curator insight, May 14, 2013 6:06 AM

3.3 - Great for students understanding about Chemotherapy as a Western Scientific Medicine

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NZ women trial new breast cancer treatment technology

NZ women trial new breast cancer treatment technology | Health Practices in NZ | Scoop.it
New Zealand women are among the world's first to trial a new development which cuts breast cancer treatment to days.

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Sophie McLachlan's curator insight, May 14, 2013 6:01 AM

3.3 Health Practices - Breast Cancer Radiation treatment

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Documenting Breast Cancer

Breast cancer surviving artist Emily Helck took a series of still pictures and compiled them in a 60-second-long video, showing weeks where she lost her hair due to chemotherapy, having her breasts removed and the healing that followed. Next, Angelo Merendino speaks about his photographs of his beautiful wife Jen as she went through treatment and died from metastatic breast cancer. Finally Ann Marie Giannino-Otis talks about her process and photographs of her experience through breast cancer. 

  
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Susan Zager's curator insight, October 25, 2013 4:51 PM

Emily Helk, Angelo Merendino, and Ann Marie talk about their incredibly moving stories and photographs of their experiences. 

Heather Swift's curator insight, November 6, 2013 11:29 PM

Emily Helk, Angelo Merendino, and Ann Marie talk about their incredibly moving stories and photographs of their experiences.

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7 Essentials for Healing and Preventing Cancer – From A Breast Cancer Survivor

In part one of three, Dr. V?ronique Desaulniers discusses the first four of what she calls the seven essentials for healing and preventing cancer. Find out w...


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Graham Player Ph.D.'s curator insight, July 11, 2014 12:36 AM

These essential guidelines are from Dr. Veronique Desaulniers, who chose to heal her own breast cancer with evidence-based Natural Medicine and without the use of any toxic therapies.

1. Let food be your medicine – food contains many powerful nutrients, and is a true prescription for health.

2. Reduce toxic exposure - make conscious decisions about what you put into your immediate environment. Reduce chemicals in the home. Use less toxic products in your home and on your body.

3. Balance energy - we are energetic beings, affected by sleep, hormones and stress.

4. Heal emotional wounds – it is usually some form of trauma or emotional event that triggers the diagnosis of cancer. Our immune system is linked to our emotional center. Learn to be happy and to think happy thoughts. Look at cancer as a message of love – a communication from your body – a signal to look at your life and emotions, and to make things better in your life.

5. Embrace biological dentistry - understand the connection between dentistry and the body. Metal fillings are toxic. Root canals are essentially dead teeth that the body is trying to reject.

6. Repair the body with therapeutic plants – there are hundreds of different foods and herbs that can build the immune system and help kill cancer cells.

7. Adopt very early detection - many of the mainstream tests detect cancer too late. Thermography can detect inflammation and increased blood flow, which may be a precursor to cancer development. The HCG (human chorionic gonadotropin) test can detect hormones that cancer cells produce. The TK1 enzyme test can indicate rapid cell division by detecting high levels of DNA replication in cancer cells.

There are three short videos in which Dr. V describes her seven guidelines. Here are the links:
http://youtu.be/eq2R6ueW97g
http://youtu.be/PyBDMFuVaEw
http://youtu.be/2RiSnwxcp9o

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Ancient's Best, Ayurveda and Yoga

Ancient's Best, Ayurveda and Yoga | Health Practices in NZ | Scoop.it
Ayurvedic Books, Skin Care Products, Massage Oils, Specialist Consultancy and Treatment.

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Rachael Dixon's curator insight, March 16, 2013 3:28 PM

Singapore-based website with lots of easy-to-understand information about Ayurveda.

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Alternative Medicine, Complementary Medicine, Integrative Medicine, Mind-Body Medicine, Herbs, Nutrition

Objective information on all aspects of health and treatment options available.
All major alternative therapy is covered in depth - therapies such as Acupuncture, Ayurveda, etc.

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Rachael Dixon's curator insight, March 16, 2013 12:31 AM

This is not as reputable or technical as some of the other sites - but loads of information here. 

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Alternative Treatments for Chronic Pain: Acupuncture, Marijuana, Hypnosis, Biofeedback, Music Therapy, Yoga, Massage

Alternative Treatments for Chronic Pain: Acupuncture, Marijuana, Hypnosis, Biofeedback, Music Therapy, Yoga, Massage | Health Practices in NZ | Scoop.it
If you have chronic pain and are looking for alternatives to medication and surgery, you have a lot of options. Alternative pain treatments that doctors once scoffed at are now standard at many pain centers.

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Rachael Dixon's curator insight, March 16, 2013 12:41 AM

Could be useful if your health condition/circumstance is "pain". 

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Welcome to Best Health

Welcome to Best Health | Health Practices in NZ | Scoop.it

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Rachael Dixon's curator insight, March 16, 2013 12:16 AM

Search for a health condition and see what information you can find! - BMJ is the British Medical Journal (so it's reputable). 

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Eastern vrs. Western Medicine

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Sophie McLachlan's curator insight, May 14, 2013 6:13 AM

Very clear comparison between Western (WSM) and Eastern (CAM, TM) medicine. Helps students to understand the differences between each.

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Cancer treatments : Cancer Research UK : CancerHelp UK

Cancer treatments : Cancer Research UK : CancerHelp UK | Health Practices in NZ | Scoop.it
This page has links to our main cancer treatment sections, information about specific cancer drugs and combinations of cancer drugs, as well as treatment information for specific cancers.

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Rachael Dixon's curator insight, May 15, 2013 4:32 PM

Information about a range of treatments for various cancers. 

mitch's comment, February 27, 2014 5:07 AM
Question for students: What are the effects on well-being of some of these treatments?
Josie Bower's curator insight, July 1, 2014 4:21 PM

A range of cancer treatments

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Depression - find a way through

Depression - find a way through | Health Practices in NZ | Scoop.it
holding on to hope is essential for getting through

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Rachael Dixon's curator insight, May 18, 2013 5:01 AM

A range of information here.  Also see their link to a pamphlet on treatment options:  http://www.depression.org.nz/ContentFiles/Media/PDF/MOH0360%20Fact%20Sheet_16.pdf ;

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Acupuncture Ups Pregnancy Rates for Infertility IVF Patients

Acupuncture Ups Pregnancy Rates for Infertility IVF Patients | Health Practices in NZ | Scoop.it
Acupuncture ups IVF fertility treatment success rates.

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Breast Cancer Surgery

Healthcare Pros: Get the full Nucleus Animation Library here http://www.nucleuslibrary.com If you like this animation, LIKE us on Facebook: http://www.nucleu...

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Sophie McLachlan's curator insight, May 14, 2013 6:05 AM

3.3 - Easy to follow, clear explanation of Surgery as a Western Scientific Medicine for treating Breast Cancer

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New Advances In Breast Cancer Treatment

New Advances In Breast Cancer Treatment | Health Practices in NZ | Scoop.it

"A public release from the Society of Interventional Radiology’s Annual Scientific Meeting highlights a new, groundbreaking treatment modality for metastatic breast cancer that has spread to the liver.

The outpatient procedure, called yttrium-90 (Y-90) radioembolization, involves gliding a catheter through a small incision in the groin area into the artery that supplies blood to the liver. Once in place, the catheter releases small microbeads that target the cancer. The beads embed themselves into the tumor and release concentrated radiation, killing the tumor but sparing the surrounding tissue.

The treatment was analyzed after use on 75 women with metastatic breast cancer whose liver tumors did not respond to normal treatments such as chemotherapy and tumor resection. Of the 69 patients who came in for a follow up, 98.5% showed a stabilization of their tumor, and 24 had at least a 30% reduction in their tumor size.

“While patient selection is important, the therapy is not limited by tumor size, shape, location or number, and it can ease the severity of disease in patients who cannot be treated effectively with other approaches,” said Robert J. Lewandowski, M.D., FSIR, associate professor of radiology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago.

This presentation comes on the heels of a study published last week (March 17th) in Clinical Genetics, in which researchers sought to personalize the genetic makeup of breast cancers in the same way that lung and colon cancers can be genetically tested to determine the appropriate treatment. “Molecular profiling exposes a tumor’s Achilles heel. We can see what messages the tumor cells are receiving and sending. It is a biological intelligence gathering mission in an attempt to interrupt the disease,” says Gregory Tsongalis, PhD, director of Molecular Pathology at Norris Cotton Cancer Center.


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Susan Zager's curator insight, March 26, 2014 7:16 PM

This is new treatment for metastatic breast cancer that has spread to the liver called yttrium-90 (Y-90) radioembolization. It is an out-patient procedure and according to the article, "The treatment was analyzed after use on 75 women with metastatic breast cancer whose liver tumors did not respond to normal treatments such as chemotherapy and tumor resection. Of the 69 patients who came in for a follow up, 98.5% showed a stabilization of their tumor, and 24 had at least a 30% reduction in their tumor size." To see this Y-90 study that "shows minimally invasive treatment that may slow disease progression in the liver while maintaining quality of life" go to: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2014-03/soir-ypn031114.php

 

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How Personalized Medicine Is Changing: Breast Cancer

How Personalized Medicine Is Changing: Breast Cancer | Health Practices in NZ | Scoop.it

In 2011, a 52-year-old runner and yoga enthusiast walked into the office of Monica Loghin, a neuro-oncologist at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, complaining of numbness and weakness in her lower limbs and difficulty controlling her bladder.

 

The symptoms were of grave concern, as the patient had previously undergone surgery for breast cancer that had spread to her brain. If such a cancer returns post-surgery, that is often a sign the patient doesn’t have much time left.

 

An MRI confirmed that the breast cancer had again spread to the woman’s cerebrospinal fluid. Loghin ordered testing of that fluid to see if the patient might have certain biomarkers that could be targeted by existing drugs. (A biomarker is a DNA sequence or protein associated with the disease; different biomarkers can suggest specific treatments, depending on the disease and other factors.) She asked for tests that could detect tumor cells circulating in the blood.

 

The cancer cells in the fluid bathing the woman’s spinal cord and brain chambers did, in fact, have a lot of the protein that controls a glucose (sugar) transporter that drives cancer cells. The cancer cells in the fluid also had a lot of HER2, a protein associated with aggressive breast cancers but also treatable with a drug called Herceptin (trastuzumab). The drug is usually taken intravenously, but Loghin had heard of a couple of cases in which Herceptin was delivered directly into the cerebrospinal fluid via a flexible tube, or catheter. The patient agreed to this experimental treatment.

 

It took only a week for the news to improve. After the first infusion of Herceptin, the patient’s cancer numbers were down. Within a few weeks, her cancer cell numbers had fallen so low that her immune system had begun to take over, clearing out the remaining cancer cells. Nearly two and a half years later, the patient is still alive and well enough to do yoga. Another MD Anderson patient who had a similar disease profile and therapy is also alive and well one year after treatment.

 

This case outlines the dream of personalized medicine: A disease is analyzed at the molecular level. The analysis identifies a drug target. The drug gets delivered where it needs to go. The patient gets better. And while this hopeful scenario has yet to become commonplace, it is becoming more and more the norm for many breast cancer patients.

 

 

More at http://genomemag.com/how-personalized-medicine-is-changing-breast-cancer/#.U72NDPmSyW3 ;
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Breast Cancer Responds Equally Well to Gel Rather Than Oral Drug, and With Less Side Effects

Breast Cancer Responds Equally Well to Gel Rather Than Oral Drug, and With Less Side Effects | Health Practices in NZ | Scoop.it
Tamoxifen applied to the skin is shown by a study to be as effective as the pill version, with fewer problems.

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Graham Player Ph.D.'s curator insight, July 15, 2014 3:36 AM

The drug tamoxifen is used to treat women with estrogen receptor-positive cancer, which relies on estrogen to grow. When taken for five years, the drug can cut in half the risk of recurrence of this type of cancer. Yet comes with many known side effects.

A gel has now been developed containing the drug tamoxifen that can be applied to the skin. Research published in Clinical Cancer Research, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research, said that the gel was applied to the breasts of women diagnosed with ductal carcinoma in situ, or DCIS. All the women had DCIS that was sensitive to estrogen. The study found that after 6 to 10 weeks of gel application, the reduction in a marker for cancer cell growth in the breast tissue was similar to that of the orally administered tamoxifen.

Seema Khan, a surgical oncologist at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago, and the lead author of the study said that the gel causes fewer side effects because the drug is concentrated in the breast tissue, and doesn’t circulate much in the blood. “The gel minimized exposure to the rest of the body and concentrated the drug in the breast where it is needed,” Khan said. “There was very little drug in the bloodstream, which should avoid potential blood clots as well as an elevated risk of uterine cancer.”

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Māori Plant Use Database

Māori Plant Use Database | Health Practices in NZ | Scoop.it
Landcare Research provides a database of sourced information on Maori uses of New Zealand native plants.

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Rachael Dixon's curator insight, March 16, 2013 12:22 AM

Maori plant use - rongoa.   

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Complementary and Alternative Medicine: MedlinePlus

Complementary and Alternative Medicine: MedlinePlus | Health Practices in NZ | Scoop.it
Complementary and Alternative Medicine

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Rachael Dixon's curator insight, March 16, 2013 12:20 AM

American - Medline Plus - reputable source of information. 

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Close Up: Testing Alternative Therapies

A Victoria University professor has issued a warning to the increasing number of people turning to alternative medicine. More and more New Zealanders have di...

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Sophie McLachlan's curator insight, May 14, 2013 6:15 AM

Very interesting... opposing perspectives. Good for critical analysis - practitioners' backgrounds and their beliefs?

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New Finding - Acupuncture Beats Drugs for Lower Back Pain

New Finding - Acupuncture Beats Drugs for Lower Back Pain | Health Practices in NZ | Scoop.it
Acupuncture beats drugs for the treatment of lower back pain according to new studies.

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Rachael Dixon's curator insight, March 20, 2013 4:36 PM

This is an American acupuncturist training site - seems to be a few recent studies reported of acupuncture's effectiveness .  Be careful of bias - they would not be publicising reports that didn't endorse/sell the benefits of acupuncture!. 

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Documentary about The Science of Acupuncture

Documentary about The Science of Acupuncture - Description: For thousands of years, what we now think of as Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) was the only medicine; now, traditional cures are being treated with a fresh respect.

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Rachael Dixon's comment, March 27, 2013 2:51 AM
It's a wee bit long - might need to preview and skip some parts.
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Types of Treatments | Cancer Society of New Zealand


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Rachael Dixon's curator insight, May 18, 2013 4:58 AM

Reputable source of information...great PDF pamphlets here...  Comprehensive information. 

mitch's comment, February 27, 2014 5:48 AM
Excellent booklets on each type of treatment explaining the actual practice and side effects/impacts of treatment
Josie Bower's curator insight, July 1, 2014 4:21 PM

Reputable source of information...great PDF pamphlets here...  Comprehensive information. 

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Medical Library

Medical Library | Health Practices in NZ | Scoop.it
Southern Cross' A-Z online library of medical facts on a broad range of health topics and conditions, written in plain English.

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Rachael Dixon's curator insight, June 5, 2013 10:41 PM

Lots of easy-to-understand information (relevant to NZ too). 

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A cure of pork fat and eel

A cure of pork fat and eel | Health Practices in NZ | Scoop.it
Fact or fiction? Simon Day looks at the future of traditional Maori healing.

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Rachael Dixon's curator insight, August 10, 2013 7:48 PM

A good article about Rongoa - traditional Maori medicine.