Treatments Archive


A cure for the wintertime blues?

Seasonal affective disorder (SAD), a type of depression that begins in late fall and early winter, is caused by lack of sunlight exposure. Common symptoms of SAD include lack of sexual energy, overeating, problems sleeping, and social withdrawal. SAD is also associated with impaired cognitive function. Getting more sunlight from being outdoors or sitting in front of a sunlit window helps stimulate the brain's 24-hour sleep-wake clock. Taking antidepressants and using light therapy (which involves sitting in front of a light box) also can help manage SAD.

Not your grandmother's breast cancer treatment

Breast cancer survival rates have markedly improved over the past several decades, driven by improved treatments. Less intensive chemotherapy can often be used, and immunotherapy and targeted drugs enable doctors to tailor treatment combinations to each woman. Women with metastatic breast cancer are often living many years because of new treatments that extend their lives. To improve outcomes, women with early-stage breast cancer should seek a multidisciplinary care team, in which many different specialists work in collaboration.

Prostate cancer: A new type of radiation treatment limits risk of side effects

A new technique for prostate cancer treatment can limit side effects from radiation therapy. It relies on specialized types of medical imaging scans that allow doctors to visualize the cancer during treatment.

Prostate cancer: An emerging surgical alternative shows promise in older men

In some men with localized prostate cancer, focal therapy is an alternative to radical prostatectomy. This procedure removes only the cancerous part of the gland, and growing evidence shows it can be an effective strategy.

A look at dry eye

Dry eye syndrome is one of the most common eye problems among older adults. Common symptoms include a gritty feeling in the eyes, sensitivity to light, or fluctuating vision that comes and goes. People with the condition can have good and bad periods, but by following prevention methods and seeking treatment when the disease flares, they can keep dry eye from interfering with their lives.

Study questions commercial men's health clinics services

Consumers should be wary about direct-to-consumer men's health clinics, as many offer costly treatments not supported by evidence and lack medical oversight, according to a 2023 investigative study.

Will we ever have a vaccine to prevent Alzheimer's disease?

There are currently nine trials of vaccines for Alzheimer's disease under way. All of them are in people with mild Alzheimer's or with the pre-Alzheimer's condition called mild cognitive impairment. All of the vaccines are designed to encourage the immune system to remove protein deposits from the brain. Most experimental vaccines are given by injection; one being tested at Harvard Medical School uses a nasal spray. It will be several years before we know if any of them will work.

Living with gout

Adopting healthy self-management strategies that focus on a healthy diet, physical activity, and achieving and maintaining a healthy weight, can improve the quality of life of people with gout. Many of these same strategies can help reduce the risk of developing gout to begin with.

Advances in varicose vein treatment

Unlike a few decades ago, there are now a number of minimally invasive ways to treat varicose veins. Doctors can shut down problem veins with injections of various substances or certain catheter procedures. A treatment currently in clinical trials in the United States promises to simply "zap" away varicose veins from outside the body. Called high-intensity focused ultrasound, it converts sound waves into a focused beam of heat that seals a malfunctioning vein.

Treatments for Gout

First-line gout treatment focuses on reducing pain and inflammation. Ideally, treatment should begin within 24 hours of the start of the gout attack. Treatment is stopped once the attack is over, and symptoms have gone away.

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