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False positive from mammogram provokes anxiety in reader

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Local vet and high school principal cycle for good health – The Topeka Capital

If you see a couple of cyclists stopped at Pratt County Veteran’s Memorial Lake, peering into the water, it just might be Clinton Skaggs and Steve Blankenship. This local veterinarian and high school principal have found some common ground through a shared love of cycling and fishing. The two first met when Clinton began serving […]

If you see a couple of cyclists stopped at Pratt County Veteran’s Memorial Lake, peering into the water, it just might be Clinton Skaggs and Steve Blankenship.
This local veterinarian and high school principal have found some common ground through a shared love of cycling and fishing.
The two first met when Clinton began serving on the USD382 School Board in 2007. Steve was principal then, as he is now, of Pratt High School. The two soon began cycling and fishing together and still enjoy doing so, although Clinton no longer serves on the school board. The two have been cycling companions for the past 10 or so years.
Clinton Skaggs began riding around 1990, after he had finished veterinary school at K-State and moved to Pratt. He’d had an ACL replacement in 1984 and his doctor told him then that he could either cycle or swim. ‘That’s the biggest thing that got me started. I wasn’t much of a swimmer,’ he said.
He bought his first bike, a hybrid, from Bicycle Pedaler after hearing an ad on the radio for the Wichita bike shop. ‘And it’s been all downhill from there,’ he said.
The veterinarian lists several reasons why he keeps riding, some 28 years later: ”I keep riding because I feel like it helps my knees. I do it for my health, for my heart. I enjoy it. I feel like it’s a fun form of exercise.’
Clinton has ridden various organized ride across the state over the years, with his earliest being the Gyp Hills Experience out of Medicine Lodge in the early 90s. He considers the recent Open Range Gravel Race, leaving out of Pratt, to be ‘one of the funnest rides I’ve ever done. The gravel alone was a challenge and a work out.’ He counts the single-day Tornado Alley ride as his longest. ‘It was 110 miles. You started at Joplin and then rode to Arkansas, Oklahoma, and the corner Kansas,’ he said
Clinton said he typically begins riding each year around the onset of daylight savings time and continues into September, until his work schedule starts getting busy. He said his riding is sporadic and depends upon how busy he is with work and other commitments.
Pratt High School Principal Steve Blankenship said that he has been riding ‘my whole life. I probably got really heavy into riding 22 or 23 years ago when I lived in California.’ Back then, he said he bought a mountain bike with a full-suspension to cut down on the number of flats he was having due to off road riding.
‘I did crash one time going down a mountain”actually on my first ride on that full-suspension bike,’ he said The mountain was just outside his backdoor. There was a dip at the bottom of a hill that he didn’t consider, and it sent him sailing. ‘lt was a good thing I had my helmet on because it split the helmet in two,’ he said. That accident resulted in some serious road rash and a trip to the local emergency room.
Like the veterinarian, the high school principal rides for health reasons. ‘I just try to go out and ride recreationally and stay healthy. Now that I’m over 50 I don’t want to have a knee replacement,’ he said. He used to play a lot of basketball but this made ‘my knees hurt, my back hurt.’ He said that cycling impacts the knees much less than playing basketball does.
Principal Blankenship, who has probably given advice to more than a few students over the years, offers this guidance to those thinking about taking up the sport of cycling: ‘Make sure you wear the right equipment and have a bike that fits you right and do the riding you want to do. Do whatever’s fun for you. If it’s no fun for you, you’re going to quit.’
That’s good counsel and, should you pass these two out on the road, it’s very evident that they’re enjoying the miles they pedal together.

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For Your Health: Start early with good dental habits

By Rema El-Mahmoud and Anquanitte Ortega

Tooth decay is one of the most common chronic conditions of childhood in the United States. One out of 10 toddlers who are two years of age already have one or more cavities, and by age five, nearly half have one or more cavities. The good news is that tooth decay is preventable!

Good oral care should start with baby teeth. Baby teeth are important for the health and development of a child. They help a child chew, speak, and smile. Baby teeth are also important because they hold space for adult teeth growing under the gums.

Cavities develop when the bacteria in the mouth changes the sugars in milk and other foods left over in a baby’s mouth into acids that can dissolve the tooth enamel. To prevent cavities, wipe baby’s gums gently with a soft, wet washcloth daily. When the first tooth comes in, use a washcloth or soft toothbrush with a rice grain-sized dab of fluoride toothpaste twice a day. Call a dentist if there are any spots on the teeth – these spots could be a cavity.

Every child needs a “dental home” a place for regular dental visits. By the first birthday, a child should see a dentist. Then, the child should visit a dentist twice a year or as advised. The dentist will show the parent how to clean a child’s teeth and protect them from cavities.

According to the American Dental Association, adult teeth start coming in between ages six to seven years of age. These teeth must last a lifetime, so keep them healthy. A child cannot brush well by themselves and they need help until about eight years of age. Help a child brush with a pea-size dab of fluoride toothpaste twice a day. Teach him or her to spit and not swallow toothpaste. Don’t forget to brush the tongue. Help them floss before bedtime.

A healthy diet is an important component to protecting a child’s teeth, too. Sugary drinks are associated with increased risk of weight gain, obesity, type 2 diabetes and heart disease. These drinks also double the risk of cavities in children. In California, nearly two out three (62 percent) of adolescents and two out of five (41 percent) of children drink one or more sodas per day. Each year, the average California adolescent consumes 39 pounds of sugar from sugary drinks!

When choosing beverages, consider both calories and nutrients. Water, milk and 100 percent juice are the only beverage options that should be provided to children. Milk, a good source of calcium, is important for bone and teeth health and development. Children ages one to two years of age should consume whole milk and children older than two-years should consume 1 percent or fat-free milk. Fruit juice offers no nutritional benefit to children under the age of one year and should not be included in their diet (unless recommended by a healthcare provider). The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends limiting 100 percent fruit juice for children ages one to three years of age to 4 ounces a day; children four to six years of age to four to six ounces per day; and children ages 7-18 to eight ounces per day.

The tips above can help you establish a proper oral hygiene for your child to ensure the development of healthy teeth. The earlier that children learn to care for their oral health will lower the chances of suffering from dental problems.

Rema El-Mahmoud is a Public Health Nutritionist and Anquanitte Ortega is a Senior Health Education Specialist at Solano County Public Health and are partners of Solano Coalition for Better Health.

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Erekat: President Abbas is in good health – WAFA


RAMALLAH, May 20, 2018 (WAFA) – President Mahmoud Abbas is in good health, said Saeb Erekat, secretary general of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization.

He said after visiting the president at Istishari Hospital in Ramallah on Sunday that the president had additional tests at the hospital after he had an ear operation on Tuesday and all results were good and reassuring.

Istishari Hospital director, Said Sarahneh, had earlier confirmed that President Abbas was admitted to his hospital on Sunday for necessary tests following the operation in his middle ear, saying that “the results turned out good and the health of the president is reassuring.”

Erekat said the president is expected to leave hospital on Monday or Tuesday.

President Abbas is 83 years old and was elected president in 2005.


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Gadgets for good health

In Photo: The Corol Roller mimics the effects of a Shiatsu massage and is waterproof so you can use it in the tub.

THERE’S no doubt that people can’t live without gadgets. The first thing we do when we wake up is check our mobile phones. We clean our house using high-tech vacuum cleaners. We style our hair using blow-dryers that cut the drying time by half. Even our watches are now gadgets. They measure our heartbeat and the number of steps we’ve taken in a day.

Health is an area where many gadgets have been developed to make things more convenient for users. I remember owning a watch that had a heart-rate monitor. I also had another watch that also functioned as a pedometer.

There are now gadgets that are solely for health purposes.

Elecom, one of  Japan’s leading gadgets and accessories store, has made health technology available for health-conscious Filipinos.

For those who seek a toned body but don’t have the time to go to the gym, the E-Clear Lean Set (P3,390 for one set that includes the device and gel pad) introduces muscle tightening to help activate your muscles during short exercises. Applying medium and low frequency to activate the muscles through pulsation, the E-Clear Lean Set mimics a muscle workout by itself, and could be worn while stretching or doing training exercises to further stimulate the tightening of muscles.

The E-Clear Lean Set mimics a muscle workout by itself, and could be worn while stretching or doing training exercises.

The E-Clear Lean Set has four programs built into the main device and comes with a gel pad, which can be applied to key muscle points that you want to tighten: arms, triceps, the obliques, lower belly, quads or buttocks, legs and hamstrings, and lower legs. Using the gadget’s deep frequency setting, parts of the body with thicker fat (such as the thighs and the belly) can be stimulated and put to work. The low frequency allows the body to perform longer exercises without feeling fatigue. To get E-Clear Lean’s full effectivity, it is recommended that you use it while stretching so that your tendons are activated and flexibility is improved.

The Elecom Corol Roller (P2,990), meanwhile, is perfect for aching muscles and body parts. This wireless roller is an electric, rechargeable device that relieves sore muscles and swelling in the lower limbs. Making use of strong vibrations made more impactful by pointed wheels that roll against the skin, the Corol Roller mimics the effects of a Shiatsu massage. Shiatsu is a Japanese finger-massage method that involves applying pressure to several points in the body, releasing tension and relieving the body of muscle aches.

The Corol Roller’s ergonomic, handy design allows the user to expertly target pain and acupressure points in the body, effectively relieving specific aches and pains. It targets lower limbs, such as the sole, the dorsal area of the foot, ankles, lower legs and knees, as well as certain parts of the upper body like the shoulder blade area and arms. The Corol Roller is also waterproof and canbe used while taking a hot soak in the tub. It comes with a main body and a dedicated USB cable for charging.

Health-related gadgets aren’t supposed to make us lazy. Rather, they were made to help cut the down the time we spend exercising. Some people would still rather spend more time working out and that’s great. Others don’t have the time but they’d still want to be fit; these gadgets are for them.

Get the E-Clear Referee, E-Clear Lean and Corol Roller in all Elecom stores, or follow @elecomph on Facebook and Instagram for more information. Elecom products are available in the following stores: Elecom SM City Marikina, Elecom SM City North Edsa, Elecom SM Southmall, Elecom Ayala Nuvali Solenad, Urbanize Shangri-La and Urbanize Uptown Mall.

For more information about its products, follow Elecom on Facebook and Instagram. n


Suntrust banner2Turning Points 2018

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Fusion Festival for Good Health in Ferndale July 28

Fusion Festival for Good Health in Ferndale July 28

Fusion Festival for Good Health in Ferndale July 28

Ferndale, MI – Ferndale Parks and Recreation and The Fit Park present the first annual Fusion Festival!!

This event will host various fitness performances from local, independently owned gyms and fitness companies on multiple stages throughout the day. New and popular classes such as Cross Fit, Zumba, Senior Aerobics, Yoga, Toddler Olympics, and more will be performed and available for crowd participation.

Over 12 gyms and fitness studio performing from the Metro Detroit area! Local food vendors, restaurants, DJ’s, Local Health and Wellness vendors, plus more!!!!

Interested in becoming a food vendor?

Click on the link below.

Interested in being a fitness vendor or sponsor? Contact Ferndale Parks and Recreation at 248-544-6767 Tickets to go on sale soon! Stay tuned!

More info:


Visit the Event Page for other fun and educational things to do!

To submit an event, email info to

Thank you to White Castle for sponsoring the Bold Move Event Page!

Order sliders online, or search for the location near you.



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Putin wishes ‘good health’ to ex-spy Skripal after hospital discharge

Russian President Vladimir Putin wished “good health” to former agent Sergei Skripal as he was released from a British hospital Friday, after recovering from a nerve agent poisoning alleged to have been orchestrated by the Kremlin.

“God grant him good health,” Putin said in a Sochi press conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

“If a military-grade poison had been used, the man would have died on the spot. Thank God he recovered and that he left (hospital).”

Russia has rejected British accusations of involvement in the poisoning, which sparked a diplomatic crisis that saw Russia and the West expelling dozens of diplomats in tit-for-tat moves.

Skripal and his daughter Yulia, who was visiting from Moscow, collapsed on March 4 on a bench in Salisbury, the city in southwestern England where the former double agent lives.

Police officer Nick Bailey who came to help was also taken to hospital. He was discharged several weeks after the attack, while Yulia Skripal was treated in hospital for just over a month.

Salisbury District Hospital nursing director Lorna Wilkinson said looking after Skripal and the two others poisoned by the same nerve agent had been “a huge and unprecedented challenge”.

“This is an important stage in his recovery, which will now take place away from the hospital,” she said.

Souring relations

Britain has said the poisoning was carried out with a type of nerve agent known as Novichok which was developed in the Soviet Union.

UN experts have confirmed that a high-purity nerve agent was used without specifying whether it was Novichok or saying who might be behind the poisoning.

Following Skripal’s release, the Metropolitan Police said it was making “good progress” in the case.

“This is a complex investigation and detectives continue to gather and piece together all the evidence to establish the full facts and circumstances behind this dreadful attack,” it said in a statement.

Russia has challenged Britain to provide evidence in the case.

“We have several times offered our British partners any necessary assistance in the investigation (of the poisoning),” Putin said Friday.

“So far we have received no response. Our offer remains open.”

Protective custody?

The Russian embassy in London accused Britain of blocking access to the pair in defiance of diplomatic convention, airing the claims in a set of sensational social media posts.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office said their offer of consular assistance had been passed to Yulia Skripal but that she had turned it down.

Both she and her father are now likely to be in protective custody.

“In the interests of Sergei and Yulia’s safety, we will not be discussing any protective or security arrangements that are in place,” the Metropolitan Police said.

Skripal is a former Russian military intelligence officer who passed information on Russia’s agents in Europe to British security services, resulting in imprisonment in his homeland.

He moved to Britain as part of a spy swap in 2010 and has lived there ever since. 

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Your Good Health: Promising treatment found for Huntington’s

Dear Dr. Roach: My sister was diagnosed with Huntington’s disease. What are the symptoms she might be experiencing?


I am very sorry to hear about your sister. Huntington’s disease is a terrible disease with no cure.

Huntington’s disease is an inherited condition causing progressive loss of neurological function. It is caused by an abnormality in the huntingtin gene called “CAG repeats”: the more repeats, the earlier symptoms tend to occur. This leads to an abnormality of a protein called huntingtin, which is especially present in some parts of the brain. It is a rare disorder, seen in only about three people per 100,000 worldwide.

Symptoms can start any time from childhood to a person’s 70s, but onset is most common in middle age. There are three types of symptoms: neurological, psychiatric and dementia. Neurological symptoms include a type of abnormal movement called “chorea.” These are involuntary rapid movements, usually of the face, trunk or limbs. People with HD occasionally are unaware of them and may (or may not) notice changes in their walking. There are subtle signs that a trained neurologist can find on physical exam. There are new treatments (tetrabenazine and deutetrabenazine) available for the abnormal movements.

Psychiatric symptoms happen in roughly half of people with HD. Depression and irritability can affect people’s social lives years before any motor symptoms become apparent. Suicide is a significant risk, at the time of diagnosis or as the disease progresses.

Dementia is universal in people with advanced HD. However, the decline in function may occur early or late in the course of the disease.

I don’t know where your sister is in the course of her disease. Early on, people generally are able to continue with their lives, as HD is a slowly progressive disease. Most people live 10-20 years after diagnosis, some much longer. As the disease progresses, though, people slowly lose the ability to live without assistance. The last stage of HD may last for years, and most people eventually will require around-the-clock care.

The majority of people with HD will have a family history of the disease, but that may not be the case in an adopted child, if the affected parent died before HD became apparent, or in the case of a new genetic mutation. Genetic testing is now 99 per cent sensitive and 100 per cent specific for HD: All family members (this includes you) should consider having the test and should meet with a genetic counsellor prior to proceeding. Testing should not be undertaken lightly for asymptomatic family members. Many people choose not to be tested.

There is no approved treatment to cure or slow down the progression of Huntington’s disease. Symptoms can be treated with a combination of medication, physical and occupational therapies and home care. It’s critical to discuss advance directives when the person with HD has full capability of expressing his or her wishes.

A new, promising treatment for HD is in clinical trials. It is called IONIS-HTTRx, and it has been shown to reduce huntingtin protein in the brain fluid. Hopefully it will be shown to affect the course of the disease.
There are several places for good information and support groups.

One is the Huntington’s Disease Society of America (; another is the Huntington Society of Canada (

Dr. Roach regrets that he is unable to answer individual letters, but will incorporate them in the column whenever possible. Readers may email questions to

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Not to your health: Germany bans beer ads that suggest it’s good for you

Beer cannot be marketed as beneficial, a German top court has ruled after a consumer rights group sued a brewery on the basis that its advertising falsely suggested health benefits.

The row with the Haerle brewery in the southern German town of Leutkirch began when a Berlin consumer protection group protested that use of the German word bekoemmlich carries connotations of health as well as tastiness.

The German federal court of justice upheld a lower court finding that the word could not be used in advertisement for beverages containing more than 1.2% alcohol.

The German court said bekoemmlich, which does not have a direct English translation but would be something akin to “wholesome”, described more than the taste of the beer.

“The term ‘bekoemmlich’ is understood by the relevant public to mean ‘healthy’, ‘beneficial’ and ‘digestible’,” the court said.

When used to describe food it means that the product is easily absorbed and tolerated by the digestive system even alongside long-term consumption, the court said, adding that beer sometimes did cause health problems.

Once the world’s largest beer consumer and famed for its annual Oktoberfest beer festival, Germany’s consumption has dropped 17% since 1993, but brewers hope the soccer World Cup which starts next month could drive a return to growth.

The European Union’s highest court ruled in 2012 that the same word could not be used to market wine.

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Huntington’s disease a progressive loss of function

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