Long Standing Back Pain may Affect Brain Tissue

November 24, 2004

Researchers compared the form and structure of the brains of 26 patients with chronic (continuous) back pain and 26 healthy individuals via MRI and computer analysis. The chronic back pain patients were divided into sciatic pain due to nerve damage, and non-nerve damage groups. The patients with chronic back pain had 5% to 11% less gray matter in the higher part of the brain (the neocortex involved in higher levels of thought) than the healthy subjects. This is equal to the amount of grey matter loss you may see over 20 years of normal aging. Grey matter is responsible for activities such as memory or processing information. The study is published in the November 17th, 2004 issue of The Journal of Neuroscience.

SAMe Quickly Helps Major Depression in HIV Positive Patients

20 HIV positive patients, who were diagnosed with major depression, were supplemented with SAMe for 8 weeks in an open study. This population is reluctant to add another potent pharmaceutical with its own set of side effects to a highly complex antiviral regimen. The researchers rationalized that SAMe because it is safe and easy too use would be a more acceptable treatment. The Hamilton Rating Score and the Beck Depression Inventory are two widely used methods to assess the severity of depressive symptoms and the effectiveness of anti-depression therapy. These analytical tools were used at weeks 1, 2, 4, 6, and 8 after initiating therapy with SAMe. The data shows a significant and quick result in the reduction of symptoms of depression in both measurement systems. SAMe has a rapid and evident effect starting as soon as the first week of therapy, with a progressive decrease in the symptoms of depression throughout the 8 week study. The study is published in the November 11, 2004 issue of the journal Bio Med Central Psychiatry.

Dental Plaque Linked to Pneumonia in the Elderly

Bacteria in dental plaque can cause pneumonia in elderly nursing home residents. All nine microbes recovered from eight patients diagnosed with pneumonia matched those recovered from their dental plaque. The lack of good oral hygiene in the nursing home setting causes an increase in the severity of dental plaque and fosters an oral environment that promotes the growth of pneumonia-causing bacteria in their periodontal disease- associated plaque. The study is published in the November 2004 issue of the journal Chest.

Reds Hx Recipe!
"InVite yourself to a blast of flavor!"
By: Lenore Salvia

Makes 2 - 3 Servings