ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Folic Acid Might Offer Allergy Relief
New Spray Could Benefit Cystic Fibrosis Patients
Keep Asthma, Allergies at Bay for the Holidays
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Supplement Hampers Thyroid Cancer Treatment
Memory Loss Help from Brain Supplement Prevagen
Massage Fosters Healing in Bereaved Relatives
ANIMAL CARE
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
Safe Toys for Dogs
BONES & JOINTS
Human Ancestors Put Best Foot Forward 1.5M Years Ago
Rheumatoid Arthritis Hits Women Harder
Most Kids With Type 1 Diabetes Lack Vitamin D
CANCER
Smoking Ups Risk of Second Breast Cancer
Physical Activity May Prolong Survival After Colon Cancer
Many Cancer Survivors Don't Adopt Healthy Lifestyle
CAREGIVING
Hospital Practices Influence Which Moms Will Breast-Feed
Older Caregivers Prone to Worse Sleep Patterns
High Rate of Rehospitalizations Costing Billions
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Night Shift Work Hard on the Heart
Varicose Veins May Mask Larger Problem
Bad Marriages Harder on Women's Health
COSMETIC
Contact Lenses Boost Kids' Self-Image
Wrinkle Fillers Need Better Label Warnings: FDA Panel
Science May Banish Bad Hair Days
DENTAL, ORAL
Most Insured Adults Worry About Health Care Costs: Poll
Acid Drinks Blamed for Increase in Tooth Erosion
Health Tip: At Risk for Gingivitis
DIABETES
Abnormal Heart Rhythm Boosts Death Risk for Diabetics
Strict Blood Sugar Lowering Won't Ease Diabetes Heart Risk
Formula Puts Doctor, Patient Glucose Readings on Same Page
DIET, NUTRITION
Trans-Fat Ban In New York City Is Proving successful
Potassium-Rich Foods May Cut Stroke, Heart Disease Risk
Fruits, Vegetables, Teas May Cut Smokers' Cancer Risk
DISABILITIES
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Prenatal Exposure to Traffic Pollution May Lead to Asthma
Childhood Food Allergies on the Rise
EPA Alerts Seniors to Carbon Monoxide Dangers
EYE CARE, VISION
Ordinary Chores Cause Half of All Eye Injuries
Brain Adapts to Age-Related Eye Disease
Eye Care Checkups Tied to Insurance Status
FITNESS
Any Exercise Good After a Heart Attack
Run for Your Life
Moderate Aerobic Exercise Lowers Diabetics' Liver Fat
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
HRT Use Raises Risk of Stomach Trouble
Traditional Nonsurgical GERD Treatments Not Impressive
Bowel Prep Harder on Women Than Men
GENERAL HEALTH
Cocaine Spurs Long-Term Change in Brain Chemistry
Regular Yoga May Improve Eating Habits
Surgical Masks Could Prevent Flu, Maybe
HEAD & NECK
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Combating Myths About Seasonal Allergies
The Internet Is Becoming One-Stop Shopping for Health Help
Using Light Therapy to Silence Harmful Brain Activity
HEARING
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Walk Long, Slow and Often to Help the Heart
Vigorous Exercise Cuts Stroke Risk for Men, Not Women
Whole Grains Lower Risk of Heart Failure
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
The HPV Vaccine: Preventative Medicine or Human Sacrifice?
Dry Weather Boosts Odds of Flu Outbreaks
Viral Infection Might Trigger High Blood Pressure
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Even Young Kids Can Learn CPR
Gene Variation Found in Boys With Delinquent Peers
Pool Chemicals Raise Kids Allergy, Asthma Risk
MEN'S HEALTH
Vigorous Exercise Cuts Stroke Risk for Men, Not Women
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
More Vitamin C May Mean Less Chance of Gout
MENTAL HEALTH
The Unmedicated Mind
Worries About Weight Are Tied to Teen Suicide Tries
Heal Your Life® Tips for Living Well
PAIN
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Alleviating Rheumatoid Arthritis
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Music of Mozart Soothes the Preemie Baby
Mom's Extra Pregnancy Pounds May Raise Child's Heart Risks
Exercise As Well As Acupuncture, May Ease Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
SENIORS
Vitamin D May Help Keep Aging at Bay
Nighttime Urination Linked to Higher Death Rate Among Elderly
Exercise Helps Reduce Falls in Young and Old
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Lose Weight, Sleep Apnea May Improve
Exercising Throat Muscles May Relieve Sleep Apnea
6 to 8 Hours of Shut-Eye Is Optimal for Health
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Exercise During Pregnancy Keeps Newborn Size Normal
Soy May Not Lead to Denser Breasts
Natural Relief for Painful Menstrual Cramps
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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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