ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Asthmatics Who Quit Smoking May Reverse Lung Damage
Childhood Food Allergies on the Rise
Air Pollution May Raise Blood Pressure
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Fish Oil's Benefits Remain Elusive
Maggots as Good as Gel in Leg Ulcer Treatments
Holistic Treatment for Candida Infection
ANIMAL CARE
'Comfort Dogs' Come to Emotional Rescue
Safe Toys for Dogs
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
BONES & JOINTS
Bone Density Predicts Chances of Breast Cancer
Most Women With Osteoporosis Unaware of Raised Fracture Risk
Resistance Training Boosts Mobility in Knee Arthritis Patients
CANCER
Strenuous Daily Workout May Keep Cancer at Bay
Massage Therapy Helps Those With Advanced Cancer
Steady Weight Gain Boosts Late-Life Breast Cancer Risk
CAREGIVING
New Guidelines for Treating Heart Failure
Moms Who Breast-Feed Less Likely to Neglect Child
Timing May Matter in Organ Donation Decisions
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Exercise May Blunt Salt's Effect on Hypertension
Migraines in Pregnancy Boost Vascular Risks
High Blood Fat Levels Common in Americans
COSMETIC
New Genetic Links to Baldness Discovered
The Acne Drug Accutane More Than Doubles Depression Risk
Contact Lenses Boost Kids' Self-Image
DENTAL, ORAL
Gum Care Helps Control Type 2 Diabetes and Its Complications
Most Insured Adults Worry About Health Care Costs: Poll
Acupuncture May Ease Anxiety Over Dental Work
DIABETES
Treatment for Type 2 Diabetes Updated
Older Diabetics With Depression Face Higher Death Rate
Exercise Protects Black Women From Type 2 Diabetes
DIET, NUTRITION
Breakfast Eggs Keep Folks on Diet
Mediterranean Diet May Help Prevent Depression
Folic Acid Might Offer Allergy Relief
DISABILITIES
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Clear Skies Have Become Less So Over Time, Data Show
Plastics Chemical Tied to Aggression in Young Girls
Restaurant Sushi May Have More Mercury Than Store-Bought Fare
EYE CARE, VISION
Half of U.S. Adults Lack 20/20 Vision
Impotence Drugs Don't Harm Vision: Study
Brain Adapts to Age-Related Eye Disease
FITNESS
Exercise in Adolescence May Cut Risk of Deadly Brain Tumor
You Can Get Great Exercise In The Garden
Vigorous Treadmill Workout Curbs Appetite Hormones
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Bowel Prep Harder on Women Than Men
New Yogurt May Ease Stomach Ulcers
Japanese Herbals May Ease Gastro Woes
GENERAL HEALTH
Reminiscing Helps Build Emotional Strength
Swine Flu Loves a Crowd
Multivitamins Might Prolong Life
HEAD & NECK
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Using Light Therapy to Silence Harmful Brain Activity
Imaging Sheds Light on How Acupuncture Works
The Internet Is Becoming One-Stop Shopping for Health Help
HEARING
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Risk Factor for Stroke More Common Among Whites
Using Light Therapy to Silence Harmful Brain Activity
Chinese Red Yeast Rice May Prevent Heart Attack
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Hand Washing 10 Times a Day May Help Keep Flu Away
Grapefruit Compound Inhibits Hepatitis C Virus
More Medicinal Uses for Pomegranate
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Gene Variation Found in Boys With Delinquent Peers
Mom's Extra Pregnancy Pounds May Raise Child's Heart Risks
Traffic Seems to Make Kids' Asthma Worse
MEN'S HEALTH
Soy Linked to Low Sperm Count
More Vitamin C May Mean Less Chance of Gout
Varicose Veins May Mask Larger Problem
MENTAL HEALTH
Common Social Groups and Race, Seem to Help People Relate
Positive Brain Changes Seen After Body-Mind Meditation
Chocolate a Sweet Pick-Me-Up for the Depressed
PAIN
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
Sugary Colas Tied to Gestational Diabetes
Calcium Supplements Cut Blood Lead Levels During Pregnancy
SENIORS
Living Alone Increases Odds of Developing Dementia
Older Adults May Have Some Immunity to Swine Flu
Daily dose of beet juice promotes brain health in older adults
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
6 to 8 Hours of Shut-Eye Is Optimal for Health
Better Sleep, Grades Seem to Go Up
Sleeping Could Help Women Lose The Baby Fat
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Heart Defects in Newborns Linked to Antidepressants
Heal Your Life® Tips for Living Well
Pre-Pregnancy Weight Linked to Babies' Heart Problems
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Acupuncture Cuts Dry Mouth in Cancer Patients

WEDNESDAY, April 22 (HealthDay News) -- Acupuncture reduces severe dry mouth (xerostomia) among patients receiving radiation for head and neck cancer, a small pilot study suggests.

"The quality of life in patients with radiation-induced xerostomia is profoundly impaired," study senior author Mark S. Chambers, a professor in the dental oncology department at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, said in a news release from the center. "Symptoms can include altered taste acuity, dental decay, infections of the tissues of the mouth, and difficulty with speaking, eating and swallowing. Conventional treatments have been less than optimal, providing short-term response at best."

This study included 19 patients with xerostomia who'd completed radiation therapy at least four weeks earlier. They were given two acupuncture treatments a week for four weeks. Acupuncture points used in the treatment were located on the ears, chin, index finger, forearm and lateral surface of the leg.

The acupuncture treatments resulted in improvements in physical well-being and xerostomia symptoms, the researchers said.

"Although the patient population was small, the positive results are encouraging and warrant a larger trial to assess patients over a longer period of time," Chambers said.

The study was published online in the journal Head & Neck.

The researchers are planning a phase 3, placebo-controlled clinical trial.

- Robert Preidt

More information

The U.S. National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research has more about dry mouth.



-- Robert Preidt



SOURCE: M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, news release, April 20, 2009

Last Updated: April 22, 2009

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