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December 20th, 2010 - Staff

Get Healthy is proud to introduce a redesign of its website. We’ve packed it full of all the great content you’re used to, plus the site will be the new home for engaging news stories about health care in Northwest Indiana.

Please bookmark our new URL here.

With access to the leading health experts right here in the region, Get Healthy offers readers a local perspective on what’s best for your health, including nutrition, fitness, mental health and environmental health. Along with the magazine, email newsletter and Facebook page, Get Healthy offers an array of valuable content that is both relevant and proactive.

The easy-to-navigate Get Healthy site will have even more beneficial content in the near future—including blogs and expert columns—so stay tuned. We’re here for you 24/7, so check it out, and let us hear from you!

Beware the hype on breast thermography

December 15th, 2010 - By Nara Schoenberg, Chicago Tribune (MCT)

If the Internet buzz about a pain-free, radiation-free alternative to mammography sounds too good to be true, there’s a reason for that.

Breast thermography—recently touted as the “best breast test” by Oprah favorite Dr. Christiane Northrup, writing in the Huffington Post—has never been proven effective for routine breast cancer screening in a large-scale, randomized study, experts say. The FDA has never approved it for that purpose and in 2009 issued a warning letter accusing an Idaho health care provider of marketing thermography as a mammogram replacement.

Filed under: Healthy Living. Tags: , .

Crown Point native writes book about surviving breast cancer

December 13th, 2010 - By Jane Ammeson

Sarah Demmon conquered her fear of water by joining Indy Survivoars, a group of breast cancer survivors that race dragon boats. The group's mission is to provide breast cancer survivors with a strong message of hope. (Photograph provided.)

Sarah Demmon conquered her fear of water by joining Indy Survivoars, a group of breast cancer survivors that race dragon boats. The group's mission is to provide breast cancer survivors with a strong message of hope. (Photograph provided.)

For Sarah Demmon, the toughest time during her bout with breast cancer was the interim period between the initial diagnosis and getting the test results back which would tell her how far the cancer had spread.

“It’s very emotional,” says Demmon, a 1988 graduate of Crown Point High School who works as senior research scientist at a pharmaceutical company in Indianapolis. “You don’t know what to do and what to expect.”

As a breast cancer survivor, Demmon decided she wanted to help other women who were diagnosed with the disease. “My whole intent is to help in a very frank and honest way,” says Demmon, who has written Thanks for the Mammaries: A Breast Cancer Survivor’s Story (Strategic Publishing 2010; $11). “I have a dry sense of humor and can be sarcastic.”

Aspirin may cut cancer deaths, but caution urged

December 11th, 2010 - By Associated Press

Pill

A new report from British scientists suggests that long-term, low-dose aspirin use may modestly reduce the risk of dying of certain cancers, though experts warn the study isn’t strong enough to recommend healthy people start taking a pill that can cause bleeding and other problems.

In a new observational analysis published online Tuesday in the medical journal Lancet, Peter Rothwell of the University of Oxford and colleagues looked at eight studies that included more than 25,000 patients and estimated that aspirin use cut the risk of death from certain cancers by 20 percent.

Filed under: Healthy Living. Tags: , , .

Health care providers pledging less radiation

December 3rd, 2010 - By Associated Press

Heath care providers are pledging to stop the overuse of radiation on patients during medical exams in a new, nationwide safety effort launched this week in Chicago.

The first step in the Image Wisely campaign is a pledge—signed so far by nearly 700 health care providers—to use the least radiation necessary on patients for a procedure. An expert panel at a radiology meeting Thursday said the campaign may lead to more review of protocols, more accreditation of imaging facilities and more widely shared standards on proper radiation doses.

Filed under: Health Care. Tags: , , .

Munster teen takes cancer to task

November 30th, 2010 - By Carmen McCollum

Narayan

Munster High School senior Santhosh Narayan is a few steps closer to winning a big scholarship.

On November 20, he won the regional title in the prestigious Siemens Competition in math, science and technology. Narayan, who is working with a pair of students from New York, won the team category and shared in a $6,000 scholarship for their materials science/nanoscience project. The trio now advances to the finals December 3 through 6 in Washington, D.C. where the winning team will share in a $100,000 scholarship.

Narayan is thrilled to be part of the competition. Narayan said his desire to conduct cancer research was awakened when the illness affected a high school coach whom he knows well. In April, Narayan applied to and was accepted into the Garcia Summer Scholars research program at Stony Brook University in Long Island, New York.

He began his research, which is titled Engineering Nanoscale Biosensors with Thermoreversible Hydrogels for a Dual Therapy of Cancer Detection and Tumor-Targeted Drug Delivery.

Filed under: Healthy Living. Tags: , , .

Study suggests mammograms under 50 if family risk

November 25th, 2010 - By Associated Press

Women in their 40s with a moderate family risk of breast cancer should get yearly mammograms, a new study suggests.

Though such testing is standard procedure in the U.S., women in Europe who have an intermediate family risk are not always offered screening if they are under 50.

British researchers followed 6,710 women under 50 who had a moderate breast cancer risk—meaning women who meet criteria such as having one close female relative who had breast cancer in her 40s or younger. Such woman have double to triple the risk of having breast cancer as the average woman.

Filed under: Healthy Living. Tags: , .

Fundraiser set to benefit infant

November 8th, 2010 - By Joyce Russell
Miranda Skye Jackson was born March 31. On August 10, she was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia at Comer Children's Hospital at the University of Chicago. Family and friends have scheduled a fundraiser November 14 in Merrillville for the South Haven infant. (Photograph provided.)

Miranda Skye Jackson was born March 31. On August 10, she was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia at Comer Children's Hospital at the University of Chicago. Family and friends have scheduled a fundraiser November 14 in Merrillville for the South Haven infant. (Photograph provided.)

For most of her seven months, Miranda Skye Jackson has been a fighter. And for most of that time, the daughter of Art and Rebecca Jackson, of South Haven, has had to call Comer Children’s Hospital at the University of Chicago her home.

Still her aunt, Nicole Ward, of Hobart, said that despite poking and prodding, 16 blood and 39 platelet transfusions and two rounds of chemotherapy, the infant’s smile lights up her hospital room.

Miranda and her twin sister, Madison, were born March 31. At their four-month checkup doctors noticed Miranda was pale and ordered more tests. She was found to be severely anemic and doctors told the Jacksons to take their infant daughter to the Chicago facility. It was there the baby was diagnosed August 10 with acute myeloid leukemia, Ward said.

“She spent seven weeks at Comer and my sister spent the entire time with her,” Ward said. Miranda’s illness has taken a toll on the family. Family and friends are taking care of Madison while their dad works as a mechanic. Rebecca Jackson has taken a leave of absence from her job at Team Chevrolet to be with Miranda, who has been home for brief periods since her diagnosis.

Dead, yes, but with health care lessons to impart

November 6th, 2010 - By Sarah Perry, The Dallas Morning News (MCT)

DeadPeople

During her first year at medical school, Kacy Dotterer’s life was changed because of what she saw in dead people.

Dotterer, a student in the Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine at the University of North Texas Health Science Center, repeatedly found herself studying the bodies of overweight people in her anatomy lessons. She expected to find fat. Just not so much. “It was infested everywhere,” Dotterer says. Layer after layer, clinging to every organ of the body.

Everyone had told her she’d gain weight in school because there’d be no time to exercise. But after what she saw, she began counting calories and avoided fast-food restaurants on her way to class. By the end of her first year, she’d lost 15 pounds. Dotterer, now a third-year student, respects the donors for helping her learn and make healthier decisions with her life. “It’s a really admirable thing they do,” she says.

Munster woman achieves medical miracles

October 31st, 2010 - By Carrie Rodovich

Kathryn Jackson, 51, has faced a lot of adversity the last 15 years. “I'm happy I'm still around. I never take a single day for granted.” (Photograph by The Times.)

Kathryn Jackson, 51, has faced a lot of adversity the last 15 years. “I'm happy I'm still around. I never take a single day for granted.” (Photograph by The Times.)

Munster resident Kathryn Jackson has suffered more health crises during the last 15 years than even heroines in the most dramatic soap operas have seen in their lives.

She was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes and multiple sclerosis. She suffered minor strokes and a major brain aneurysm. She spent two years confined to a wheelchair. She beat an aggressive form of breast cancer.

“When I talk about what I’ve been through, it’s amazing,” said Jackson, now 51. “I’m happy I’m still around. I never take a single day for granted. I know what it feels like to be down, but I know what it feels like to recover from a debilitating situation.”

Filed under: Mental Health. Tags: , .

Breast Cancer Breakthroughs

October 23rd, 2010 - By Sharon Biggs Waller and Erika Rose

BreastCancerRibbon

The campaign to raise awareness of breast cancer has been a successful one, and the general public is perhaps more educated about this form of cancer than any other. As a result, much research has been done on the disease that affects 1 in 8 women. In this special section, Get Healthy is happy to report the groundbreaking developments and resources available locally that lead to recovery and longer life.

Read all of the articles here:

» The Heredity Battle
» Post-mastectomy Products
» Mind Games
» Breast Cancer Made Easier

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