Recent Articles

Benign Breast Lumps

Q: I am 35 years old, and have had a history of lumps in my breast. The doctors have told me that I have "benign breast disease." My concern is that I have an aunt who had breast cancer. Should I be worried?

A: As much as we would like to completely reassure you, we can only do so conditionally. Benign breast disease can be divided into three groups that are significant when it comes to associations with breast cancer.

Hemorrhoids

Q: Ever since my babies were born four years ago, I have been troubled with hemorrhoids. My problem is that in the past couple of months I have noted bleeding. My husband is pressuring me to go for a checkup. Is this necessary?

Importance of Cancer Aftercare

Q: I am 72 years old, and have a history of cancer (ovarian and histiocytoma in my leg). Five years ago I had a mastectomy, and I have scar tissue from the surgery. A few months ago I developed pink scar tissue in the area where the staple was pulled out. Within the pink scar tissue a large dark mole came, then another. It oozes occasionally, and at times is painful—usually after I do housework. I have had other large dark moles that eventually fall off, as well as several moles that start out as skin color and itchy, but then turn into dark moles.

XDR Tuberculosis

Q: Is the XDR form of tuberculosis as dangerous as the media made it out to be in the recent episode of the man who traveled by air after being told not to? Or is this much ado about nothing?

A: We believe you are referring to the Andrew Speaker case, which has global ramifications.

Smallpox Vaccine

Q: I am concerned about the smallpox vaccination. How safe would it be? Is there any way to treat smallpox that would avoid vaccination if there were to be a terrorist attack using this germ?

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