Wednesday, July 12, 2006

migraine news roundup 7

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Findings on how best to treat insomnia:

Therapy Bests Medication for Chronic Insomnia
While popping a sleeping pill may be the solution for an occasional sleepless night, people with chronic insomnia can get more and deeper sleep if they receive cognitive behavioral therapy to treat their sleep disorder.

That's the conclusion of a Norwegian study that found that cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) was better at treating long-term insomnia than the sleep medication zopiclone, which is very similar to the widely advertised drug Lunesta, the researchers said.

Feeling a bit sad may be a big deal for you if you've previously experienced clinical depression:

Mild sadness may trigger depression anew
These findings suggest that "even a mild negative mood, when experienced by someone with a history of depression, can re-instate some of the cognitive features observed in depression itself," Segal's team concludes.

Though our treatment choices as migraineurs may not have life or death consequences, I think the desire of this family to make the choice that is right for their son is something we can relate to. Control seems to be one of the first things to leave your life when you're diagnosed with an illness, and the desire to preserve what little you have left seems natural to me. I think the extent to which our society allows people to make their own informed health care choices is important for us to consider.

Teen cancer patient battles to choose own treatment
16-year-old wants alternative therapy, not ordered chemo
Three months of chemotherapy last year made him extremely weak. So when he learned in February that his cancer was active again, he turned -- against doctors' advice -- to a sugar-free organic diet, herbs and visits to a clinic in Mexico.

A social worker asked a judge to require the teen to continue conventional treatment.

In May, the judge issued a temporary order finding Jay and Rose Cherrix neglectful for supporting their son's choice to pursue alternatives. Judge Jesse E. Demps also ordered the parents to share custody of Abraham with the Accomack County Department of Social Services.

Abraham's parents face losing custody completely.

I'm afraid I just don't follow the line of reasoning that calls this parental neglect or abuse. Would the result be the same if this famliy's decision was based on religious considerations? According to my understanding of the law, it would not.

The New York Times reports that we may soon be able to legally access drugs from Canada:

Senate Backs Allowing Drugs From Canada

Sleep research reveals difference in perception and reality where length of sleep is concerned:

Patterns: Sleep Proves More Elusive Than Many Believe

Researchers who asked people to wear sleep-measuring devices found that the period of sleep was much shorter than the study subjects believed. The report appears in the July 1 issue of The American Journal of Epidemiology.

The researchers, led by Diane Lauderdale of the University of Chicago, found that the people studied had spent an average of seven and a half hours in bed, but just over six hours asleep. They also found significant differences in sleep patterns between men and women and whites and blacks, and among different income groups.

In this Washington Post article, courtesy of The Daily Headache, a physician shares his thoughts on the doctor/patient relationship. This doctor has developed an appreciation for well-informed patients and encourages patients to act as partners to their doctors.

Who's in Charge?
It's Your Care. Take Control of It, Recommends One Physician.

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