Category Archives: Analytical

Examples of writing that is facts and research-based.

Over a third of Americans use CAM therapies

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According to a US government survey released this month, approximately 38% of US adults and 12% of US children used CAM therapies in 2007.

CAM use by U.S. adults and children: in 2002, 36% of adults used CAM. In 2007, that number increased to 38.3%, while 11.8% of children used it.This 2007 survey marks the first time the National Institutes of Health have collected statistics about CAM usage among children, 1 in 9 of whom use CAM therapies. It is a rich source of information about how Americans use CAM therapies and why they use them.

The 24-page report is available for download at:

Barnes PM, Bloom B, Nahin R. CDC National Health Statistics Report #12. Complementary and Alternative Medicine Use Among Adults and Children: United States, 2007. December 10, 2008.

While the 2007 report reveals that overall use of CAM therapies among adults is similar to the 2002 data, use of some specific CAM therapies (such as deep breathing, meditation, massage therapy, and yoga) has increased significantly.

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Breast cancer in Canada and how it can affect you

What is breast cancer?

Breast cancer isn’t just a woman’s disease. Men also have breast tissue that can undergo cancerous changes. While women are about 100 times more likely to get breast cancer, any man can develop breast cancer. Male breast cancer is most common between the ages of 60 and 70.

How common is breast cancer?

Breast cancer, the most common type of cancer among women, affects one woman in nine. The leading cause of cancer death among women aged 40 to 55, it claimed an estimated 5 300 Canadian lives in 2007. (source)
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C’est c. difficile

According to an article in the Toronto Star dated July 4, 2008, over 463 elderly patients have died of c. difficile in Ontario hospitals in the past 30 months. This and other coverage has prompted a flurry of concern around this issue.

What is c. difficile ?

Toronto Public health defines clostridium difficile as:

“bacteria found in feces that can cause diarrhea and more serious intestinal conditions such as colitis (inflammation of the colon), sepsis (disease-causing bacteria or toxins are found in the bloodstream and tissues) and even death.”

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Cell phones pose health risks: Toronto Public Health

Toronto Public Health recently issued a factsheet recommending that teens and young children limit their cell phone usage. (CBC news article)

The reason for the advisory is the growing evidence linking the radio frequency (RF) energy emitted by the devices to the development of brain tumours with prolonged exposure. WiFi antennas and devices raise similar concerns. To date, this is the only specific Canadian recommendation with regard to cell phone use by children.

This is a very controversial health topic, with Health Canada and the World Health Organization both weighing in on the “not all that harmful” side of the equation, neither recommending any specific precautions or exposure limits.

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