Archive for the ‘Studies’ Category

Restrictions on Food Supplements are Based on Misinformation

Tuesday, October 16th, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Orthomolecular Medicine News Service, October 16, 2012

Restrictions on Food Supplements are Based on Misinformation

An alert from Europe to the rest of the world

by Gert Schuitemaker, PhD

Introduction: “It can’t happen here” qualifies for top placement on the all-time list of famous last words. The United States still has, for now, over-the-counter access to nutritional supplements. But no one who reads newspapers, watches televised news, or leafs through a magazine can miss the preponderance of negative reporting on vitamins. As OMNS continues to counter such misinformation (this issue is the 145th), we take a look at the real “risks” of dietary supplements. Readers may wish to keep in mind what Dr. Abram Hoffer famously said: “All attacks on supplement safety are really attacks on supplement efficacy.” If supplements are vilified, they can be made prescription. If they are prescription, costs will go up and access will vanish. – Andrew W. Saul, Editor

(OMNS Oct 16, 2012) A recent study explains that the risk of mortality from taking food supplements is far lower than other risks like smoking, pharmaceutical adverse drug reactions, cancer, and even dying from a lightning strike. [1] This important new information is relevant to recent food regulations in the European Union (EU) that are supposed to make commercially sold food supplements safer. The study shows the belief that food supplements are dangerous is mistaken.

The Codex Alimentarius was established In 1963 by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the World Health Organization (WHO) and later the World Trade Organization (WTO) as an international standard, with guidelines and codes of practice for the sale of food products, including food supplements.[2] In the natural health community, the Codex is considered a threat to freedom of choice and purchase of food supplements because it stipulates what doses of supplements can be sold and what wording may be used in advertising and packaging.

The Codex has not been adopted by the United States, but within the EU, it was signed into law in 2002 with the adoption of the European Food Supplements Directive. This set of regulations restricts the free choice of consumers when purchasing food supplements. To more fully appreciate this issue, it should be understood that compared to the United States, the EU is highly socialized and regulated. Acceptance of such rigid legislation by policy makers and politicians is easier in Europe than on the other side of the Atlantic. But giant food corporations are lobbying for similar limitations in the USA. Thus, the Codex Alimentarius and the EU legislation are considered a likely template for exporting this type of food regulation to the rest in the world.

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Study: Androgenetic alopecia in children: report of 20 cases.

Saturday, October 8th, 2011

Br J Dermatol. 2005 Mar;152(3):556-9.
Androgenetic alopecia in children: report of 20 cases.
Tosti A, Iorizzo M, Piraccini BM.
Source

Department of Dermatology, University of Bologna, Via Massarenti 1, 40138 Bologna, Italy. tosti@med.unibo.it
Abstract

Androgenetic alopecia (AGA) is the most common type of hair loss in adults. Although there are differences in the age at onset, the disease starts after puberty when enough testosterone is available to be transformed into dihydrotestosterone.

We report 20 prepubertal children with AGA, 12 girls and eight boys, age range 6-10 years, observed over the last 4 years. All had normal physical development. Clinical examination showed hair loss with thinning and widening of the central parting of the scalp, both in boys and girls. In eight cases frontal accentuation and breach of frontal hairline were also present. The clinical diagnosis was confirmed by pull test, trichogram and dermoscopy in all cases, and by scalp biopsy performed in six cases.

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There was a strong family history of AGA in all patients. The onset of AGA is not expected to be seen in prepubertal patients without abnormal androgen levels. A common feature observed in our series of children with AGA was a strong genetic predisposition to the disease. Although the pathogenesis remains speculative, endocrine evaluation and a strict follow-up are strongly recommended.

PMID:
15787828
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15787828

Study: Cure of alopecia areata after eradication of Helicobacter pylori: A new association?

Thursday, September 22nd, 2011

 -:: This Abstract is posted here for posterity and archival purposes only ::-

World J Gastroenterol. 2011 Jul 14;17(26):3165-70.
Cure of alopecia areata after eradication of Helicobacter pylori: A new association?
Campuzano-Maya G.

Germán Campuzano-Maya, Faculty of Medicine, University of Antioquia. Medical Director, Laboratorio Clínico Hematológico, Carrera 43C No. 5-33, Medellín, Colombia.

Alopecia areata is a disease of the hair follicles, with strong evidence supporting autoimmune etiology. Alopecia areata is frequently associated with immune-mediated diseases with skin manifestations such as psoriasis and lichen planus, or without skin manifestations such as autoimmune thyroiditis and idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura.

Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection is present in around 50% of the world’s population and has been associated with a variety of immune-mediated extra-digestive disorders including autoimmune thyroiditis, idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura, and psoriasis. A case of a 43-year old man with an 8-mo history of alopecia areata of the scalp and beard is presented.

The patient was being treated by a dermatologist and had psychiatric support, without any improvement. He had a history of dyspepsia and the urea breath test confirmed H. pylori infection.

The patient went into remission from alopecia areata after H. pylori eradication. If such an association is confirmed by epidemiological studies designed for this purpose, new therapeutic options could be available for these patients, especially in areas where infection with H. pylori is highly prevalent.

Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21912461

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Study: The impact of common micronutrient deficiencies on iodine and thyroid metabolism: the evidence from human studies.

Thursday, September 22nd, 2011

-:: This Abstract is posted here for posterity and archival purposes only ::-

Best Pract Res Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2010 Feb;24(1):117-32.
The impact of common micronutrient deficiencies on iodine and thyroid metabolism: the evidence from human studies.
Hess SY.

Program in International and Community Nutrition, Department of Nutrition, University of California, Davis, CA, USA. syhess@ucdavis.edu
Abstract

Deficiencies of micronutrients are highly prevalent in low-income countries. Inadequate intake of iodine impairs thyroid function and results in a spectrum of disorders. Other common deficiencies of micronutrients such as iron, selenium, vitamin A, and possibly zinc may interact with iodine nutrition and thyroid function. Randomised controlled intervention trials in iodine- and iron-deficient populations have shown that providing iron along with iodine results in greater improvements in thyroid function and volume than providing iodine alone. Vitamin A supplementation given alone or in combination with iodised salt can have a beneficial impact on thyroid function and thyroid size. Despite numerous studies of the effect of selenium on iodine and thyroid metabolism in animals, most published randomised controlled intervention trials in human populations failed to confirm an impact of selenium supplementation on thyroid metabolism. Little evidence is available on interactions between iodine and zinc metabolism.

Copyright 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

PMID:
20172476
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
From http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20172476

Study: Treatment effects of intradermal botulinum toxin type A injection on alopecia areata

Sunday, September 18th, 2011

-:: This Abstract is posted here for posterity and archival purposes only ::-

Dermatol Surg. 2010 Dec;36 Suppl 4:2175-81. doi: 10.1111/j.1524-4725.2010.01709.x.
Treatment effects of intradermal botulinum toxin type A injection on alopecia areata.
Cho HR, Lew BL, Lew H, Sim WY.
Source

Department of Dermatology, College of Medicine, Kyunghee University, Seoul, Korea.
Abstract
BACKGROUND:

There are several different treatment options for alopecia areata (AA); Botulinum toxin type A (BTXA) can induce changes in neurotransmitter levels, directly or via neuroimmunologic mechanisms. Therefore it is thought that BTXA may influence cytokines that are responsible for hair growth arrest that characterizes AA.
OBJECTIVES:

To prospectively examine the safety and efficacy of BTXA injections for the treatment of patients with AA of the scalp.
METHODS AND MATERIALS:

Seven patients with AA received 10 U of BTXA intradermal injections on each site three times. Subjects were classified according to the extent of scalp hair loss into Severity of Alopecia Tool subclasses.
RESULTS:

Two patients had one patch of AA; the remaining patients had total or universal type AA. One patient dropped out of the study after experiencing spontaneous recovery from her AA. One patient reported aggravation of her AA after BTXA injections. The remaining patients’ AA did not change after BTXA injections.
CONCLUSION:

Our results suggest that BTXA injection cannot be used as an alternative treatment for recalcitrant AA. Nevertheless, future studies concerning the treatment efficacy of BTXA for mild to moderate AA are warranted.

© 2010 by the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery, Inc.

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Guideline for Diagnostic Evaluation in Androgenetic Alopecia in Men, Women and Adolescents

Sunday, September 18th, 2011

-:: This Abstract is posted here for posterity and archival purposes only ::-

From The British Journal of Dermatology

Guideline for Diagnostic Evaluation in Androgenetic Alopecia in Men, Women and Adolescents

U. Blume-Peytavi; A. Blumeyer; A. Tosti; A. Finner; V. Marmol; M. Trakatelli; P. Reygagne; A. Messenger

Authors and Disclosures

Posted: 01/12/2011; The British Journal of Dermatology. 2011;164(1):5-15. © 2011 Blackwell Publishing

Abstract

Androgenetic alopecia (AGA) is the most common hair loss disorder, affecting both men and women. Due to the frequency and the often significant impairment of life perceived by the affected patients, competent advice, diagnosis and treatment is particularly important. As evidence-based guidelines on hair disorders are rare, a European consensus group was constituted to develop guidelines for the diagnostic evaluation and treatment of AGA. This S1 guideline for diagnostic evaluation of AGA in men, women and adolescents reviews the definition of AGA and presents expert opinion-based recommendations for sex-dependent steps in the diagnostic procedure.
Introduction

Evidence-based guidelines on hair disorders are rare, except for one S2 guideline on alopecia areata by the British Association of Dermatologists.[1] No national, European or international guidelines have been established for the diagnosis and treatment of androgenetic alopecia (AGA). Three different types of evidence-based guidelines (types S1–S3) exist. An S1 guideline is built by an informal consensus of an expert group. The statements for S2 guidelines are formed by a formal consensus process. An S3 guideline is based on a consensus from a systematic literature research with evaluation of evidence levels and a systematic decision process.

A European consensus group was built, consisting of members from different countries, organizations, specialities and interest groups. A detailed literature search on diagnosis and treatment of AGA using Medline, Embase, Cochrane and a hand search was performed. Based on the literature available the group decided to undergo an informal consensus process on an S1 level for the diagnosis of AGA and an S3 guideline process for the therapy of AGA (published separately). A subgroup of this European Consensus Group consisting of the eight authors of this article decided to work on this S1 guideline which was funded by the Verein Pro Haut e.V. Berlin, and is therefore independent and without any commercial conflict of interest.

The European Consensus Group reviewed the definition of AGA and established a consensus for the diagnosis of AGA dealing with the following points: expert opinion-based recommendation for the diagnosis of AGA in female and male patients, as well as in adolescents. The aim was to develop a diagnostic evaluation form and recommendations for diagnostic procedures to assist in the daily work of the practitioner. The questionnaire for daily practice was kept simple and it is planned to be validated during consultation by practising dermatologists experienced in the management of hair disorders.

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Study: Photographic documentation of hair growth in androgenetic alopecia.

Sunday, September 18th, 2011

-:: This Abstract is posted here for posterity and archival purposes only ::-

 

Dermatol Clin. 1996 Oct;14(4):713-21.
Photographic documentation of hair growth in androgenetic alopecia.
Canfield D.
Source

Canfield Scientific, Inc., Cedar Grove, New Jersey, USA.
Abstract

The challenge of useful serial photographic documentation of hair loss can be met by using a regimented approach at each photographic session. Patient outcomes that are better documented allow for more informed decisions to be made about the course of therapy by both the physician and the patient.

PMID:
9238329
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9238329

 

A bit more text:

The ability to photographically document patient progress is especially useful in recording the subtle changes that a hair loss patient may have between office visits. Serial photography (sequential photographs) can be used by both the physician and the patient to assess these changes. Figures 1A and 1B show the therapeutic benefit a patient has achieved in the vertex area of the scalp from an initial to a 6-month follow-up visit. The physician’s challenge as the photographer is significant: to take photographs that allow for the assessment of change, and not a critique of photographic technique. Variability in technique, including patient preparation, lighting, camera settings, camera to patient registration, film, and processing can all undermine the best intentions of photographic documentation.

High-quality clinical photography can be accomplished in the examination room. With the 35-mm camera equipment you may already have in your office, you can structure a methodic approach for taking reproducible serial photographs. Controlled reproducible serial photographs should read like a time-lapse movie, allowing for only the change in a patient’s condition over time. Clinical researchers studying androgenetic alopecia worldwide use controlled photography for primary and secondary endpoints of protocols to determine the efficacy of therapies.

 

Study: Male Pattern Baldness: classification and Incidence – by NORWOOD, O’TAR T. MD

Sunday, September 18th, 2011

-:: This Abstract is posted here for posterity and archival purposes only ::-

Title:

Male Pattern Baldness: classification and Incidence NORWOOD, O’TAR T. MD – Southern Medical Journal

Abstract:

The need for a widely accepted, accurate, and reproducible standard of classification for male pattern baldness has increased with the advent and increasing popularity of hair transplant surgery. This report establishes such a classification, and reports its use in determining the incidence of male pattern baldness at various ages in 1,000 white adult male subjects. The action of testosterone as an incitant in male pattern baldness is well known, but this study points out the continued effect of time, even in later years. Since most hair transplant surgery is performed on subjects with male pattern baldness, and because the success of hair transplant surgery is largely dependent on proper patient selection, a complete understanding of male pattern baldness is essential for consistently good results with hair transplantation.

(C) 1975 Southern Medical Association

 

Find the attached document for the Norwood scalre and the full text of the Norwood study “Male Pattern Baldness: classification and Incidence” by Norwood. Click HERE

Study: Treatment of Male Pattern Baldness with Botulinum Toxin: A Pilot Study

Sunday, September 18th, 2011

Comment by Ethan:

This study is important because it reminds us that T conversion to DHT occurs in low oxygen environments, that the muscles (or anything) that constricts blood flow also reduces the availability of Oxygen in the scalp and dermal papilla.  Thus, relaxing these muscles, via botox (something I would not recommend since botox is a toxin), other approaches to relax the muscles and/or increase circulation and Oxygen levels include: various types of scalp massages, acupuncture, diet and nutrition, reducing inflammation, relaxation exercises etc is helpful to men with hair loss resulting from a genetic sensitivity to DHT.

 

 -:: This Abstract is posted here for posterity and archival purposes only ::-

Treatment of Male Pattern Baldness with Botulinum Toxin: A Pilot Study

Freund, Brian J. D.D.S., M.D.; Schwartz, Marvin D.D.S., M.Sc.

Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery . 126(5):246e-248e, November 2010.

doi: 10.1097/PRS.0b013e3181ef816d

Author Information

Crown Institute; Pickering, Ontario, Canada

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Selenium and the control of thyroid hormone metabolism.

Friday, July 1st, 2011

-:: This Abstract is posted here for posterity and archival purposes only ::-

Thyroid. 2005 Aug;15(8):841-53.
Selenium and the control of thyroid hormone metabolism.
Köhrle J.

Institut für Experimentelle Endokrinologie und Endokrinologisches Forschungs-Centrum der Charité EnForCé, Charité Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Berlin, Germany. josef.koehrle@charite.de

Abstract

Thyroid hormone synthesis, metabolism and action require adequate availability of the essential trace elements iodine and selenium, which affect homeostasis of thyroid hormone-dependent metabolic pathways.

The three selenocysteine-containing iodothyronine deiodinases constitute a novel gene family. Selenium is retained and deiodinase expression is maintained at almost normal levels in the thyroid gland, the brain and several other endocrine tissues during selenium deficiency, thus guaranteeing adequate local and systemic levels of the active thyroid hormone T(3).

Due to their low tissue concentrations and their mRNA SECIS elements deiodinases rank high in the cellular and tissue-specific hierarchy of selenium distribution among various selenoproteins.

While systemic selenium status and expression of abundant selenoproteins (glutathione peroxidase or selenoprotein P) is already impaired in patients with cancer, disturbed gastrointestinal resorption, unbalanced nutrition or patients requiring intensive care treatment, selenium-dependent deiodinase function might still be adequate.

However, disease-associated alterations in proinflammatory cytokines, growth factors, hormones and pharmaceuticals modulate deiodinase isoenzyme expression independent from altered selenium status and might thus pretend causal relationships between systemic selenium status and altered thyroid hormone metabolism.

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