B Vitamin Helps Prevent Some Skin Cancer (unfortunately not vertigo)

I’ve had one instance of basal cell carcinoma on my head, and I wasn’t happy about it. This study in Australia, which has one of the highest rates of skin cancers in the world, says one B vitamin can help prevent certain types of cancer. I’m not so sure this stuff is “almost obscenely inexpensive,” because it wasn’t when I just checked, but what price can we place on avoiding cancer?

And sure, this has nothing to do with vertigo, but I thought it important enough to bring to your attention.


An inexpensive vitamin can help reduce the occurrence of common skin cancers in people prone to that disease, researchers reported on Wednesday.

In a clinical trial, people who took two pills a day of nicotinamide, a form of vitamin B3 available as a nutritional supplement, had a 23 percent lower risk of developing non-melanoma skin cancer than those who took placebo pills.

“It’s safe, it’s almost obscenely inexpensive and it’s widely available,” Dr. Diona Damian, the lead investigator of the study, said in a news conference organized by the American Society of Clinical Oncology, who said the findings could be put into practice right away.

“This one’s ready to go straight into the clinic,” said Dr. Damian, a dermatology professor at the University of Sydney in Australia. However, she said [Dan:  my italics]  the vitamin should be used only by people who get frequent skin cancers, not by everyone.

The skin cancer prevention study focused on non-melanoma skin cancer, particularly basal cell carcinomas and squamous cell carcinomas. Together, these are the most common form of cancer in the United States, with the most recent study estimating that in 2006 there were 3.5 million cases in 2.2 million Americans. Most of these are curable through surgery or other techniques, though the surgery can leave scars and in some cases the cancers do become more serious.

Dr. Damian said the effect of the vitamin seemed to disappear once people stopped taking it. She said that nicotinamide did not have the side effects, like headache and flushing, of niacin, another form of vitamin B3.

Two experts not involved in the study said the results were “interesting and potentially important,” in part because nicotinamide had fewer side effects than the pharmaceutical alternatives for skin cancer prevention.

The experts, Dr. Clara Curiel-Lewandrowski, clinical director of the Skin Cancer Institute at the University of Arizona, and Steven Stratton, a pharmacologist there, said in a joint email that patients should nonetheless talk to their doctors before taking the vitamin.

Read the entire article at The New York Times.

Dan

Posted under Other Medical

This post was written by Dan Ferry on May 15, 2015

Tags:

Dan’s New Short Story Book Free in Kindle Store March 31 – April 2

My new short story book, A Scamp, A Scalawag, And A Patsy: Daniel Buys A Horse And Other Stories is FREE in the Kindle Store from March 31 – April 2.

Just three stories:

  • How I bought my horse (a true story)
  • An inept con man (no horses)
  • A veterinarian handles the aftermath of a tragic riding accident

If you like horses, you’ll probably like this book. If you’re interested in where I got the great cover, check out my post at jhomf.com

Thanks!

Dan

Posted under Kindle Books

This post was written by Dan Ferry on March 31, 2015

Tags:

Watch out for those supplements!

I don’t know if you’re taking supplements, or if you purchase them from these retailers, but this report from the New York Attorney General is kind of scary, especially if, like me, you believe that your vertigo is caused primarily by particular foods and other items you might ingest, like supplements. Here’s the first part of the Attorney General’s report.


NEW YORK — Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman today announced that his office sent letters to four major retailers, GNC, Target, Walmart, and Walgreens, for allegedly selling store brand herbal supplement products in New York that either could not be verified to contain the labeled substance, or which were found to contain ingredients not listed on the labels. The letters, sent Monday, call for the retailers to immediately stop the sale of certain popular products, including Echinacea, Ginseng, St. John’s Wort, and others.

See the full report here

 

 

 

Posted under Causes

This post was written by Dan Ferry on February 4, 2015

Tags: