7 Cancer Symptoms Men Tend to Ignore

One should also listen to people close to you, such as your close friends or wife. Sometimes others notice things about us that we're unaware of or don't want to admit.

Below are some symptoms that are commonly overlooked and could be signs of cancer

1. Inexplicable Weight Loss
If you observe sharp decline in your body weight, even when there are no major changes to your diet or exercise regime, it's essential to find out why. Most of the times, unexplained weight loss
could be an early sign of colon and other digestive cancers.

2. Shortness of Breath
Often, lung cancer patients, when they look back remember noticing their inability to catch their breath. They couldn’t even walk short distances without wheezing. Chest pain shortness of breath, spitting blood can be signs of testicular cancer that spreads to the lungs.

3. Chronic Stomach Problems
Unexplained stomach aches, or feeling completely full even after a small serving of food are common early symptom of stomach cancer. Liver cancer patients have been known to frequently visit their doctors complaining of upset stomachs or stomach pains. Get an ultrasound done after consulting your doctor if you have a stomach ache that doesn’t go away.

4. Difficulty in Swallowing
Men identified with esophageal cancer, looking back remember a feeling of pressure and soreness when swallowing that just didn't go away. This is a sign of tightening of the esophagus which could mean the existence of a tumor. Sometimes it is one of the first signs of lung cancer too.

5. Frequent Infections
Catching infections easily or having fever often with body aches can indicate leukemia, a cancer of the blood cells. Here, the bone marrow produces abnormal white blood cells which drain the body's infection-fighting capabilities. See your doctor if you show these symptoms for over an extended period of time.

6. Swelling of Facial Features
Some patients later diagnosed with lung cancer reported noticing swelling, puffiness, or redness in the face. The explanation behind this is that lung tumors obstruct the blood vessels in the chest, thus checking blood from running freely from the head and face. Don’t ignore any puffiness on your face if it doesn’t go away.

7. Persistent heartburn
If you have frequent incidents of heartburn or a constant feeling of pain in the chest after eating anything, see your doctor and get screened for esophageal cancer. When the stomach acid ascends into the esophagus, it causes heartburn and a sour taste in the throat. It can set off a condition called Barrett's esophagus, which can lead to esophageal cancer.

Going through this brief guide on cancer in men will help you to learn about the diseases at early stages.

For assessing your risk factors for certain kinds of cancer, it is very important to study your family records of cancer properly.

Let your doctor know and together you can keep these cancers at bay.


Cartoon characters attract kids to junk food

Shrek, Dora the Explorer, and other lively TV and movie stars beloved by children have been moonlighting as junk-food pitchmen in recent years. And they're good at it.

Fifty percent of children say that food from a package bedecked with a cartoon celebrity such as Shrek tastes better than the same exact food from a plain package, according to a new study.

And when given a choice, the vast mass of kids pick the food from the cartoon-adorned package as a snack, the study found.

The use of TV and movie characters on food packaging is "premeditated to access certain feelings, memories, and associations," says Dr. Thomas Robinson, M.D., a professor of child health at the Stanford University School of Medicine, who was not involved in the study. "If you associate certain products with things that are otherwise considered fun, it's going to make those products seem more desirable."

Cartoon characters tend to appear on junk food, which makes health experts even more concerned about the magnetic effect they have on kids. Although characters such as Dora and SpongeBob SquarePants have been used to market fruits and vegetables, they are most often used on chips, candy, and other unhealthy snacks. SpongeBob has even hawked Kentucky Fried Chicken.

"Parents may not set out to buy unhealthy products," says the lead author of the study, Christina Roberto, M.S., a doctoral student at Yale University's Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity, in New Haven, Connecticut. "But kids can be really, really persuasive. They see them and they want them, and it gets difficult to have that battle in the grocery store."

In the study, which is in print this week in the journal Pediatrics, Roberto and her colleagues presented 40 children ages 4 to 6 with paired samples of graham crackers, gummy fruit snacks, and baby carrots. Each pair of sample foods was identical down to the clear packaging, except that one of the packages had a sticker of Shrek, Dora the Explorer, or Scooby Doo on it.

Between 50 percent and 55 percent of the children said that the food with the sticker on it tasted better than the same food in the plain package. (The percentage varied with each food.) And between 73 percent and 85 percent selected the food in the character packaging as the one they'd prefer to eat as a snack.

"Marketers know that cartoon characters sell food products; that's why they use them," says Marion Nestle, Ph.D., a professor of nutrition, food studies, and public health at New York University. "This study really nails it down. Now we have evidence for asking--no, requiring--food marketers to stop using cartoons to market junk foods to kids."

The American Psychological Association and other organizations have likewise called for the abolition of all marketing of food products to children, a stance that Robinson says is reasonable.

"Young children, particularly under the age of 7 or 8, really don't understand the persuasive intent of marketing," he says. "That seems inherently unfair, and something we should protect children from, just like we protect them from other things we think are beyond their cognitive ability, like pornography."

new ways to deal with picky eaters

Using the power of cartoon characters for good--to market healthy foods--may be less effective than restrictions on junk-food marketing, Roberto says. The cartoon characters had the least influence on children's preferences when they were on the package of baby carrots, she notes.

"It might be that they're not used to seeing [the characters] on vegetables," Roberto says. Or it might be that kids already know that "a carrot is a carrot is a carrot," she adds, whereas they're not sure how a specific brand of graham cracker or gummy snack will taste.

Is it Baby Fat or Obesity?

Food and beverage companies in the U.S. spend more than $1.6 billion each year to attract children's attention, and 13 percent of that is spent on character licensing and similar cross-promotion efforts, according to Federal Trade Commission data cited in the study.

But the calls for reform have had some impact. The use of licensed characters on food products declined between 2006 and 2008, according to research conducted by the Rudd Center.

"It's good to see the voluntary work on this," says Roberto. "But we'd like to see more."

Schoolgirl, 12, with body of 96-year-old refuses to be beaten by aging disease by living life to the full

When Hayley Okines arrives home after a serious day at school she would have more reason to complain than most. The 12-year-old suffers from the quick aging disease progeria, an extremely rare condition that affects one in eight million people.

But despite suffering from arthritis, having little hunger and intriguing a cocktail of pills morning and night, the youth refuses to be beaten.

Her mother Kerry, told the Mail Online: 'I'm so proud of Hayley. No matter what life throws at her she just gets on with it. She doesn't let her arthritis stop her and runs around with her friends and she is very good at taking her medication.'

Hayley's life story is the subject of a documentary to be broadcast on Five tonight. When she last featured in the channel's 'Extraordinary People' series in 2007 she was about to take part in a pioneering medical trial in America.

Her parents from Bexhill, East Sussex, were hideously aware that the average lifespan for a child with progeria is only 13 years old and Hayley was devastated when she lost her best friend to the disease in 2006.

Hayley was well enough to attend her local secondary school and astonished her family by how well she adapted to her new surroundings.

Kerry said: 'We were worried because of the sheer size of the school and of rough and tumble because Hayley is quite fragile. But she settled in quickly and has made a couple of new friends as well. She is particularly good at science and maths.

'She also had her first sleepovers this year and the girls enjoyed chatting and playing on the Nintendo Wii and doing all the usual girly things.'

Kerry who has two other children - Louis, 8 and Ruby, 5 - is now hoping to organise a UK reunion for children with progeria, after the annual U.S event was cancelled due to a lack of funding.

Although they have managed to raise £4,000 to host the event they are still £14,000 short of their target.

'We're desperate not to cancel the event and have even looked at getting a bank loan,' Kerry said.

'We've already had families of 18 children with progeria say they would like to attend and we're hoping that a sponsor might come forward to help.

'It means so much to the children to meet others with the same condition.'

Kerry and her husband Mark will be taking Hayley back to Boston in July for another check-up and are confident Hayley will continue to deal with whatever life throws at her.

'Hayley just gets on with her life,' Kerry said.

'She is a fighter and has achieved a great deal in a short time.'

Bay Area sees increase in whooping cough cases

The Bay Area is in the middle of a whooping cough outbreak, with six times as many cases so far this year as last year, and public health officials are encouraging new parents to get vaccinated and avoid large crowds to protect their infants.

The entire state is seeing large increases in whooping cough, which is the familiar name for pertussis. So far five infants - all of them under 4 months old - have died in California, and all of them caught the disease from their mother or another caregiver.

None of the deaths have been in Northern California, but the Bay Area had 173 cases of whooping cough between January and the end of May, compared with 29 cases in the same period last year, according to the state public health department. Kaiser Permanente, the largest health care provider in the Bay Area, has seen 17 times more cases of pertussis in Northern California so far this year than last year.

"We would like to see everybody get immunized against pertussis - adolescents, adults, everyone. It's especially important for those around newborn infants," said Dr. John Talarico, chief of the immunization branch for the state public health department.

Whooping cough, which gets its name from the noise children make when they gasp for breath between violent coughs, is a respiratory infection that can be deadly in babies. It is usually just an annoying illness in older children and adults, although it can turn into bronchitis or other lung infections.

Natural cycle

The recent rise in whooping cough is probably due to the cyclical nature of an infectious disease: A large group of people gets sick and experiences a short period of immunity, and five or so years later, enough people have lost their immunity that the disease is able to spread freely again.

Pertussis was once thought to be on its way toward disappearing, like many once-widespread diseases that are now prevented with vaccines. But the whooping cough vaccine doesn't provide lifelong protection.

Babies start getting vaccinated at age 2 months and are considered fully protected by the time they enter kindergarten, but children probably lose their immunization by high school. Almost all adults are susceptible to the disease - and in fact, unprotected adults are "the reservoir" of infection that can spread to vulnerable babies, said Dr. Stephen Parodi, chief of infectious disease for Kaiser Permanente Northern California.

"We traditionally thought of pertussis as a children's disease, and that's who's been vaccinated in the past," Parodi said. "By the time we're young adults, we basically don't have immunity. That puts our young children at risk for getting exposed to it."

A vaccine for adults and older children became available in 2005 - it's known as the Tdap, and combines a pertussis vaccine with the tetanus booster shot adults should get every 10 years.

California public health officials are pushing programs to vaccinate all parents who have a baby. Vaccinations typically cost $67 in San Francisco. However, a coupon offering a discounted pertussis vaccination is given to anyone who picks up a birth certificate for a new baby.

Avoid crowds

Parents with newborns also might want to avoid large crowds for at least the first few months during the whooping cough outbreak, said Kathy Harriman, an epidemiologist with the state's public health immunization branch.

"It's probably not the greatest idea to take a new infant out amongst crowds, where you can't control who's around your infant, and people like to come up and take a look," Harriman said.

Doctors also stressed that parents of newborns check in with a pediatrician if a baby shows even mild symptoms of whooping cough, which resemble cold symptoms. The disease is easily treated with antibiotics, but by the time babies develop the obvious "whooping" noise in their cough, they are often very ill already.

"Infants who are infected initially don't look really sick," Harriman said. "They don't have a fever, they might have a runny nose, their cough might not be that noticeable. With a really young infant, I would err on the side of caution."

Symptoms of whooping cough

-- Initially, symptoms are similar to the common cold, and include runny nose, sneezing, red and watery eyes, and a dry cough.

-- After a week or two, severe coughing attacks may occur. Some individuals may develop a persistent hacking cough. For others, the coughing may be serious enough that patients bring up thick phlegm, vomit, turn red or blue in the face and become extremely fatigued. This is when the high-pitched "whoop" sound that defines the disease may become apparent.

-- Parents with infants should consult their pediatrician if their baby develops even mild cold symptoms in the middle of a whooping cough outbreak.

Whooping cough outbreak

California, and the Bay Area in particular, has seen a dramatic increase in whooping cough cases this year. Here are the statistics through May 31 compared with the same period in 2009:

California: 190 cases, no deaths in 2009; 584 cases, five deaths in 2010

Bay Area: 29 cases in 2009; 173 cases in 2010 (no deaths)

San Francisco had 20 confirmed or suspected cases of pertussis in all of 2009; it had 15 cases by May 27 this year. Alameda County had 33 cases in all of 2009 and 26 cases through May of this year.

source: http://topnews.co.uk/26001-number-patients-infected-whooping-cough-comparatively-more-year, http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2010/06/04/BALJ1DPMRJ.DTL