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What Is the Peer Review Process?

Please can you explain how the peer review process works? Does the fact that a clinical study has appeared in respected peer review journal mean that it has effectively passed peer review? Or can anyone publish their trials and it is upon publication that the true scrutiny really begins?

If the latter, when are the trials officially deemed to have passed peer review, given that the experts may well have differing opinions on their robustness and on whether there are any protocol errors?

A good overview of peer review can be found at Wikipedia.

Peer review is done when an article is submitted for publication in a journal that has editors capable of reviewing the technical and clinical details of the submitted material. Differing options are often published along with the article.

 

Hair Loss That Can Not Be Detected By The Naked Eye

At our monthly open house event this past week, a 40 year old man came in and complained about his recent onset of hair loss. He saw significant amounts of hair in his shower drain, as well as whenever he brushes and combs his hair. The open house events are almost like an AA meeting, where men can come to see hair transplant results of other patients, watch a surgery, and meet with a doctor. The other prospective patients saw him and in a friendly manner teased him, asking why he was there. His head of hair was as full as anyone would have hoped to get from a surgery with us. All of the balding men at the open house were envious.

The key to being a good doctor is to first listen to your patient, so when his turn came in to see me, I first listened to his hair loss reality. What he reported about recent hair loss was real, but the eye could not detect it, so we ran bulk measurements in 4 different parts of his scalp to see if he was actually losing hair. His hair loss was evident on the examination, which showed that he lost about 50% of his hair in the front, top and crown of the head when compared against his donor area. Contrary to what my eye showed me, his examination was absolutely confirmatory that he was in active hair loss. I placed him on finasteride with the expectations that the hair loss might stop.

I always say that a man can lose up to 50% of his hair before it becomes detectable. He has wonderful hair, medium thickness, heavy wave, black with just enough gray in it to bring great value to produce great cover. If his hair were fine, then he would probably be thin with 50% bulk loss.

 

CarboxyTherapy?

What do you think of this new carboxytherapy for hair loss?

Link 1, Link 2, Link 3

Serious therapy or scum? Thanks in advance for your help!!!!!!

There seems to be a neverending stream of new tricks to reverse or treat hair loss, and this is just another one. To prove than any new treatment works, one needs to do a controlled clinical study. There is a process for this, although I am not going to define it here. The Carboxy Therapy results on a single patient does not meet criteria for a treatment or a cure.

 

Not Hair Loss News - Matt Lauer and Al Roker Get Prostate Exams on TV to Raise Awareness

Snippet from the article:

Matt and Al undergo uncomfortable prostate exams on ‘Today’ to help raise awareness of prostate cancer during men’s health month.

What some people on the Today show will do to promote good health — and ratings: Matt Lauer and Al Roker underwent prostate exams on live TV today.

Cue the urological jokes and the funny faces. Yuck, yuck, indeed. But it was all for a good cause and, let’s face it, celebrities undergoing medical procedures in public can grab the attention of the medically clueless.

Read the rest — Matt Lauer and Al Roker get prostate exams on ‘Today’

Getting a prostate exam on morning TV is one way to raise prostate cancer awareness… and to try for a ratings boost.

 

A Thank You Letter From a Patient

Hi Dr. Pak and Dr. Rassman
I’m writing a thank you letter to thank everyone at NHI, from you Dr. Pak who has done my procedures (FUE hair transplants) to Dr. Rassman who invented the procedure. Also to your amazing staff who are so kind and nice human beings. To tell you truth I don’t have word to describe how I feel, because everyone at NHI is so nice and are willing to go out of there way to help out. I truly appreciate what everyone at NHI has done for me and giving me hope to feel about myself.

One last thing Dr. Pak and Dr. Rassman, I truly applaud you Dr. Pak and Dr. Rassman and your staff from the bottom of my heart for being so nice, polite and knowledgeable in what you all do.

There is no better reward for a doctor to have a patient reflect upon our caring. It is the core of what we, as doctors, are about. Everyone who goes to medical school, does so with the intention to address human suffering as best we can. Our staff must be organized to rally that mission.

A simple thank you is the greatest reward we can hope for. We are so blessed by people like the man who sent the above email, that they put their trust and confidence in us to work through their problems. We get thanks every day, because we genuinely care.

We appreciate comments like this more than anything. What a great way to make a living.

 

In the News - ABC Looks at the Future of Hair Loss Treatments

Snippet from the article:

By the age of 35, two-thirds of American men experience some degree of measurable hair loss, and by the age of 50, approximately 85 percent have significantly thinning hair, according to the American Hair Loss Association.

Given those numbers, finding a cure for baldness has become the holy grail among scientists everywhere.

Read the rest — Hats Off to These 4 Potential Baldness Cures

ABC News goes over 4 potential balding treatments, once again throwing the word “cure” around. The methods they explain (in slideshow form!) are still in the research phase.

 

Not Hair Loss News - Early Alzheimer’s Disease Test By Sniffing Peanut Butter?

Snippet from the article:

In a small pilot study of patients displaying signs of cognitive decline, researchers at the McKnight Brain Institute Center for Smell and Taste and the University of Florida (UF) found that peanut butter can help identify those with Alzheimer’s disease (AD), a neurodegenerative disorder often accompanied by a loss of smell.

Working with 18 patients with probable AD, 24 with mild cognitive impairment, 26 with other causes of dementia, and 26 matched controls, graduate student Jennifer Stamps and her UF advisor Kenneth Heilman measured the distance from the nose at which a patient (whose eyes were closed) could smell a tablespoon of peanut butter. They ran the test one nostril at a time and found that early-stage AD patients had dramatically different smell sensitivity between the right and left nostrils, with the left regularly being more severely impaired. The other patients tested displayed no such difference in smell sensitivity.

Read the rest — Sniffing out Alzheimer’s

What is believe by the researchers, is that areas of the brain responsible for smell may be the first areas impacted in dementia. Could this be a simple, mild cognitive impairment test for patients with early dementia or Alzheimer’s disease?

I want our readers to know that I have been sniffing peanut butter with each nostril and I am pleased to report that both nostrils work equally.

 

Not Hair Loss News - Higher Radiation Doesn’t Help Prostate Cancer Treatment

Snippet from the article:

Escalated-dose radiation therapy for localized prostate cancer did not significantly affect the frequency of biochemical or clinical failure compared with a standard protocol, a randomized trial showed.

Men treated by the standard radiotherapy protocol had a 5-year rate of combined biochemical and clinical failure of 21.43%, whereas the escalated-dose, or hypofractionated, protocol was associated with failure rate of 23.3%.

The incidence of late toxicity did not differ between protocols, but hypofractionated therapy worsened urinary function in men who had urinary problems at baseline, Alan Pollack, MD, PhD, of the University of Miami, and co-authors reported online in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Read the rest — Higher Radiation Dose No Help in Prostate Cancer

 

Not Hair Loss News - Patient Loses Penile Implant Malpractice Lawsuit

Snippet from the article:

By now, the words have become a permanent part of the national lexicon: “For erections lasting longer than 4 hours, seek immediate medical assistance,” warn ads for various erectile dysfunction (ED) drugs.

But what of the patient whose ED treatment consists not of a drug but a penile implant — someone whose erection lasts not 4 hours but 8 months? What does this patient do? Well, if he’s 44-year-old Daniel Metzgar, of Newark, Delaware, he sues his doctor for medical malpractice.

Read the rest — Eight-Month Erection Gives Rise to Malpractice Suit

This patient had a prolonged erection from a penile implant, and because of complications of swelling and eventual extrusion of the implant, he sued his doctor for medical malpractice. The patient received a three piece inflatable implant and had it surgically implanted. He developed scrotal swelling but did not report it to his doctor, though did go to the hospital after 4 months.

In 2010, tubing punctured his scrotum, so he had the initial device taken out and a replacement instrument put in by another doctor. He sued his initial doctor for not putting in the device correctly claiming regular embarrassment and told the jury that he could not ride his motorcycle, wear normal cloths or participate in family events. “I could hardly dance, with an erection poking my partner” the patient said, “It’s not something you want to bring out at parties and show to friends”.

When the jury award came in, the patient lost following the defense’s logic that that sometimes “bad outcomes occur”, even when nobody is at fault.

 

Not Hair Loss News - European Men Are 11 cm Taller in the Last Century

Snippet from the article:

The average height of European males increased by an unprecedented 11 cm between the mid-nineteenth century and 1980, according to a new paper published online today in the journal Oxford Economic Papers. Contrary to expectations, the study also reveals that average height actually accelerated in the period spanning the two World Wars and the Great Depression.

Timothy J. Hatton, Professor of Economics at the University of Essex and the Research School of Economics at Australian National University in Canberra, examined and analysed a new dataset for the average height (at the age of around 21) of adult male birth cohorts, from the 1870s to 1980, in fifteen European countries. The data were drawn from a variety of sources. For the most recent decades the data were mainly taken from height-by-age in cross sectional surveys. Meanwhile, observations for the earlier years were based on data for the heights of military conscripts and recruits. The data is for men only as the historical evidence for women’s heights is severely limited.

Read the rest — Average Height of European Males Has Grown by 11 Centimeters in Just Over a Century

Researches theorize it could be due to better living conditions, better nutrition education, and better health systems, along with a decline in infant mortality rates.