“Certain times of the year are more difficult than others to stick to healthy eating, and the holidays are certainly no exception! With parties, festivities, and traditions mostly centered on an abundance of delicious treats, snacks, and meals.”


Healthy ideas in dealing with the holiday season!

healthy foods for the holidays2 healthy foods for the holidays' healthy food for the holiday4 healthy food for the holidays3

When going to a party or gathering, bring a nutritious but festive dish to share! Something like a salad, a veggie platter, a fruit salad, or healthy homemade snacks. This ensures that there is at least something healthy to eat! Some cute ideas include: Fruit Grinch Santa’s, Fruit Tree, Banana Snow men, Grape and Cheese Christmas Tree Platter, & String Cheese Snowmen.

When you know you’ll be out and about Christmas shopping, running errands, or going to festivities, plan ahead and never leave the house without a healthy snack. This way, if you can’t find any healthy option, you don’t starve and give in to the temptations. Things such as homemade energy balls or bars, low-sugar trail mix, fruit and cheese, or veggies and hummus can make for great, and filling, snacks. Aim to eat regularly to avoid overeating, especially of the wrong foods!

On Christmas day, make a balanced and healthy breakfast! Include some fresh fruit and healthy protein. Making a yummy breakfast Christmas morning can be healthy and fun, like whole grain pancakes shaped as a reindeer face. This can be a great way all around to enjoy and look forward to healthy foods!

While not everyone is going to completely abstain from any and all sweets and festive foods during the holidays, at least aim to load up your plate with the healthy, nutritious options first. This will dull your hunger and appetite so you are less likely to overeat the bad stuff! This is also a good time to practice portion control, especially when it comes to the desserts and high-sugar drinks.

Instead of dessert, or at least instead of a full serving of dessert, have a cup of herbal tea prior to eating the sweets. The tea will help make you feel full and less likely to scarf down the treats, while also providing some antioxidants!

Set goals for yourself and have a support group. Having a friend or family member to set goals with can be a great way to stay motivated and accountable during this particularly tempting time. Make goals like maintaining your workout schedule or avoiding processed sugar during the holidays. Having a friend working towards a goal with you helps you stay focused and on track!

There is always Exercise. Keeping on track with your normal exercise routine is especially difficult with the extra business around the holidays. But making it a priority to exercise regularly this time of year not only helps you stay on track, but also helps decrease your appetite for junk food!

Don’t keep tempting things around the house. Friends and neighbors commonly deliver sweets and treats during this time of year, and while we all genuinely appreciate the sincere gesture of friendship and kindness, keeping and eating all the cookies and treats delivered to you doesn’t do you any good! If necessary, take a bite or two, but toss the rest (or maybe re-gift it) so it’s not there tempting you to indulge.

Drink plenty of water. Make sure, as you go throughout your day, you are sufficiently hydrated. Even slight dehydration can trick us into thinking we’re hungry, and, therefore, we are more likely to overeat and give in to those treats!

Don’t be afraid to say no. If you know you’ll be going to a party or event that won’t offer any nutritious options, eat before you go. This way you won’t have to turn to the high sugar, high calorie, high fat foods that don’t promote health and fitness.

Always remember that your health is up to you! There are a multitude of ideas and tips on resources such as positive direction to help make your favorite dishes and snacks healthier but still fun and festive! Try to branch out this year and do a healthy makeover of your favorite traditional holiday goodies with even some healthy new modern dishes so you’re not left feeling overweight or unhealthy after the season is over!   Where you don’t regret the passing holiday but have a great memory of what your holiday season was like! Enjoy and happy holidays!


The holiday season and how it impacts the heart with increasing risk of an MI.

It’s the holiday season—cardiac patients not careful in eating but indulging in junk food may put you at high risk for a bomb to go off in the heart=heart attack.

While colder weather may play a role, studies have shown that the spike in heart events during the holiday season occurs even in It’s no secret that holiday celebrations offer many temptations to overindulge. Many holiday foods are high in saturated fats or sodium. Overindulgence in these foods can increase cholesterol levels or blood pressure, making it more difficult for blood to flow through arteries and upping the chance of a blockage. What you may not know is that eating a heavy holiday meal may affect you even after you’ve pushed away from the table. “Research shows that anyone with coronary-artery disease or high cholesterol has a heightened risk for heart attack for up to one day after eating a heavy meal,” said Mittleman. Mittleman participated in a study, “Heavy Meals May Trigger Heart Attacks,” led by Francisco Lopez-Jimenez, MD, currently the Director of the Cardio-metabolic Program at the Mayo Clinic. This study, which focused on nearly 2,000 former heart attack patients, found that 10 percent of them suffered a coronary within 26 hours of eating a heavy meal.

“People often change their eating habits during the holidays,” said Dr. Anne Riley, a cardiologist at BIDMC. “For those with congestive heart failure [CHF], salty foods can cause fluid retention and high blood pressure, which place added stress on an already weakened heart.”

Your heart may leap with delight at the electronic gizmo or emerald bracelet that you’ve just unwrapped from under the Christmas tree. But you can’t say the same for that nasty holiday surprise known as the “Merry Christmas coronary” or “Happy Hanukkah heart attack.”

For many years, researchers have been intrigued by a disturbing pattern: Deadly heart attacks increase during the winter holiday season. One study even found distinct spikes around Christmas and New Year’s Day.

Recommended Related to Heart Health

Read Amazing Facts About Heart Health and Heart Disease:

You can feel your heart thudding away every time you put your hand to your chest, but do you have any idea what’s really going on in there or what keeps your heart ticking as it should? WebMD the Magazine asked Richard Krasuski, MD, director of Adult Congenital Heart Disease Services and a staff cardiologist at the Cleveland Clinic, to help explain some amazing and little-known facts about the human heart.

“We certainly know that there are certain risk factors for coronary artery disease. There’s obviously smoking, hypertension, dyslipidemia [high cholesterol], diabetes, lack of exercise, and age,” says Robert A. Kloner, MD, PhD, a researcher at Good Samaritan Hospital in Los Angeles and a professor at the Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California.

“But we’re also learning that there are certain triggers for cardiovascular events,” he adds, “including time of the year and seasons. If we can get a true handle on the seasonal variation, we could knock down death from coronary disease.”

Coronary artery disease stems from atherosclerosis, a condition in which fatty plaques narrow the arteries to the heart. When a plaque ruptures, it can trigger a blood clot that leads to a heart attack.

In a national 2004 study published in Circulation, researchers at the University of California, San Diego, and Tufts University School of Medicine examined 53 million U.S. death certificates from 1973 to 2001. They discovered an overall increase of 5% more heart-related deaths during the holiday season. When researchers looked at individual years, they found varying increases in cardiac deaths for every holiday period they studied, except two.

Doctors have long known that cold weather is hard on the heart. Blood vessels constrict, which raises blood pressure. Blood also clots more readily. Frigid temperatures increase strain on the heart, and too much physical exertion can worsen the burden and trigger a heart attack. For example, doctors have treated many patients whose heart attacks followed strenuous snow shoveling.

Not to put a damper on holiday frivolity, but heart attacks increase during winter. For one reason, cold weather is tough on the heart. Blood vessels constrict, which causes blood pressure to rise. Additionally, blood clots more easily. (I’m getting this info, by the way, from the boldface link a sentence or two ago).

“People tend to consume much more fat, salt, sugar, and alcohol during the holiday season,”.   “Also, people tend to be less active due to the cooler weather. Overindulgence of food and alcohol along with inactivity raises the blood pressure and cholesterol levels. These risk factors combined increase your chances of having congestive heart failure, a stroke, or even a heart attack.” says Roberto Wayhs, MD, chief of cardiology at Methodist Charlton Medical Center.

To put a stop to that, or at least decrease your chances, he offers these tips:

Limit foods and beverages that are salty and/or rich. Blood pressure tends to go up the more salt you intake. Rich and sugary foods raise blood sugar levels.

Be consistent in taking your daily medications. You need them at all times of the year to maintain good health.

Get enough sleep. Sleep loss is related to weight gain, which also can affect the heart. Aim for at least seven hours.

Control your stress. “Holiday sadness adds stress,” Wayhs says. “Don’t be afraid to seek professional help if you need it.”

Limit alcohol intake.  “High alcohol intake has been linked to irregular and rapid heartbeats (atrial fibrillation) and congestive heart failure,” says Dr. Wayhs.

Maintain your normal exercise routine. “Don’t place your healthy habits on the back burner,” he says.

If you don’t have time for your usual workouts, try a shorter one.

Oh and, of course, stop smoking. But you knew that already.


Hearing Loss & how health impacts the Diagnosis

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hearing-loss1 hearing-loss2

Men are more likely to experience hearing loss than women.

Of adults ages 65 and older in the United States, 12.3 percent of men and nearly 14 percent of women are affected by tinnitus. Tinnitus is identified more frequently in white individuals and the prevalence of tinnitus is almost twice as frequent in the South as in the Northeast.

Approximately 17 percent (36 million) of American adults report some degree of hearing loss.

There is a strong relationship between age and reported hearing loss: 18 percent of American adults 45-64 years old, 30 percent of adults 65-74 years old, and 47 percent of adults 75 years old or older have a hearing loss.

About 2 to 3 out of every 1,000 children in the United States are born deaf or hard-of-hearing. Nine out of every 10 children who are born deaf are born to parents who can hear.

The NIDCD estimates that approximately 15 percent (26 million) of Americans between the ages of 20 and 69 have high frequency hearing loss due to exposure to loud sounds or noise at work or in leisure activities.

Only 1 out of 5 people who could benefit from a hearing aid actually wears one.

Three out of 4 children experience ear infection (otitis media) by the time they are 3 years old.

Roughly 25 million Americans have experienced tinnitus.

Approximately 188,000 people worldwide have received cochlear implants. In the United States, roughly 41,500 adults and 25,500 children have received them.

Approximately 4,000 new cases of sudden deafness occur each year in the United States. Hearing loss affects only 1 ear in 9 out of 10 people who experience sudden deafness. Only 10 to 15 percent of patients with sudden deafness know what caused their loss.

Approximately 615,000 individuals have been diagnosed with Ménière’s disease in the United States. Another 45,500 are newly diagnosed each year.

Approximately 3 to 6 percent of all deaf children and perhaps another 3 to 6 percent of hard-of-hearing children have Usher syndrome. In developed countries such as the United States, about 4 babies in every 100,000 births have Usher syndrome.

One out of every 100,000 individuals per year develops an acoustic neurinoma (vestibular schwannoma).

High levels of cotinine, the chemical that indicates exposure to tobacco smoke and second-hand smoke has been directly linked to higher risks of some types of hearing loss. **

More than 500 million people around the world are experiencing some form of hearing loss right now. Are you one of them?

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If you have hearing loss, you are not alone. About one in six people experience some degree of hearing impairment over the course of their lives.

The effects may not be obvious…

Hearing loss affects people in different ways. Left undiagnosed or untreated, it can damage communications and erode relationships. Over time, hearing loss may degenerate from a strictly physical condition to a psychological one, which is just one of the reasons it is so important to seek a solution promptly. For most people with hearing loss, there is help. Properly fitted hearing aids improve communication for at least 90 percent of people with hearing loss.[1]

The cause of hearing loss may not be clear…

Hearing loss is not just the result of attending loud concerts or a factor of the aging process. Illness and infections can also play a part in damaging your hearing. A University of Wisconsin Medical School 2001 study[2] revealed that hearing loss occurred in nearly 80% of those who may have suffered from a heart attack. They further determined that individuals who exercised at least once a week experienced a 32 percent reduction in the risk of suffering from hearing loss compared to those who did not work out.

Other health issues associated with either temporary or permanent hearing loss include the following:

  • Sluggish or poor blood flow to the ear
  • High blood pressure
  • Sickle Cell Disease
  • DiabetesMany other factors can lead to hearing loss, including your family history, repeated exposure to loud noises, injuries, and smoking
  • No matter what effects you are experiencing due to hearing loss or the source of your condition, the next steps are obvious. Contact your family doctor, specialist, audiologist, or other hearing care professional to get your hearing tested. You will be surprised how many options are available to help you regain as much of your lost hearing as possible.Recommended to check with your md on any changes with diet or exercise especially if diagnosed already with disease or illness for your safety.
  • There are options you can do towards prevention of hearing loss. You can start with keeping your ears cleaned routinely with having the doctor checking your ears every 6 months to yearly. You can even live healthier and being able to control what your body is exposed to in eating better foods of the 4 food groups, perform exercise in your routine life, if not daily then 2-3 times a week (from walking fast to working out in a gym). You can also keep your weight in a therapeutic range (all factors in prevention of diabetes II, and high B/P that can cause hearing loss.). At the same time, do not smoke or expose yourself to a lot of second hand smoking or a lot of extremely loud noises from work areas to concerts without wearing ear plugs for safety. You can also keep your ears cleaned with having the doctor check your ears every 6 months to yearly. So there are things you can do to help prevent hearing loss.
  • But the options for improvement are many:
  • Screenings for diabetes and other conditions typically do not include hearing tests. If you have one of these conditions, it’s probably a good idea to ask for a referral to a hearing care professional who can conduct a hearing screening to see if you are suffering from any kind of hearing loss.
  •    1-World Health Organization.
  • 3-National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD).
  • 2-Torre P 3rd, Cruickshanks KJ, Klein BE, Klein R, Nondahl DM. (2005). The association between cardiovascular disease and cochlear function in older adults.
  • 3-National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD). **                                   


“Peyronie’s disease is a disorder in which scar tissue, called a plaque, forms in the penis—the male organ used for urination and sex. The plaque builds up inside the tissues of a thick, elastic membrane called the tunica albuginea. The most common area for the plaque is on the top or bottom of the penis.”

NIH  National Institute of Digestive, Diabetes, and Kidney Disease

Part II Peyronie’s Disease

What are the signs and symptoms of Peyronie’s disease?

The signs and symptoms of Peyronie’s disease may include:

hard lumps on one or more sides of the penis
pain during sexual intercourse or during an erection
a curve in the penis either with or without an erection
narrowing or shortening of the penis

Symptoms of Peyronie’s disease range from mild to severe. Symptoms may develop slowly or appear quickly. In many cases, the pain decreases over time, although the curve in the penis may remain. In milder cases, symptoms may go away without causing a permanent curve.

What are the complications of Peyronie’s disease?

Complications of Peyronie’s disease may include

the inability to have sexual intercourse

-Anxiety, or stress about sexual abilities or the appearance of the penis
-stress on a relationship with a sexual partner
-problems fathering a child because intercourse is difficult

How is Peyronie’s disease diagnosed?

A urologist diagnoses Peyronie’s disease based on:

  1. a medical and family history
  2. a physical exam
  3. imaging tests

1. Medical and Family History

Taking a medical and family history is one of the first things a urologist may do to help diagnose Peyronie’s disease. He or she will ask the man to provide a medical and family history, which may include the following questions:

What is the man’s ability to have an erection?
What are the problems with sexual intercourse?
When did the symptoms begin?
What is the family medical history?
What medications is the man taking?
What other symptoms is the man experiencing?
What other medical conditions does the man have?

2. Physical Exam

A physical exam may help diagnose Peyronie’s disease. During a physical exam, a urologist usually examines the man’s body, including the penis.

A urologist can usually feel the plaque in the penis with or without an erection. Sometimes the urologist will need to examine the penis during an erection. The urologist will give the man an injectable medication to cause an erection.

3. Imaging Tests

To help pinpoint the location of the plaque buildup inside the penis, a urologist may perform

ultrasound of the penis
an x-ray of the penis

For both tests, a specially trained technician performs the procedure in a health care provider’s office, an outpatient center, or a hospital, and a radiologist—a doctor who specializes in medical imaging—interprets the images. The patient does not need anesthesia.

Ultrasound. Ultrasound uses a device, called a transducer, that bounces safe, painless sound waves off organs to create an image of their structure.

X-ray. An x-ray is a picture created by using radiation and recorded on film or on a computer. The amount of radiation used is small. The man will lie on a table or stand during the x-ray, and the technician may ask the man to change positions for additional pictures.

How is Peyronie’s disease treated?

A urologist may treat Peyronie’s disease with nonsurgical treatments or surgery.

The goal of treatment is to reduce pain and restore and maintain the ability to have intercourse. Men with small plaques, minimal penile curvature, no pain, and satisfactory sexual function may not need treatment until symptoms get worse. Peyronie’s disease often resolves on its own without treatment.

A urologist may recommend changes in a man’s lifestyle to reduce the risk of ED associated with Peyronie’s disease.

Nonsurgical Treatments:

Nonsurgical treatments include medications and medical therapies.

Medications. A urologist may prescribe medications aimed at decreasing a man’s penile curvature, plaque size, and inflammation. A man may take prescribed medications to treat Peyronie’s disease orally––by mouth––or a urologist may inject medications directly into the plaque. Verapamil is one type of topical medication that a man may apply to the skin over the plaque.

Oral medications. Oral medications may include
vitamin E
potassium para-aminobenzoate (Potaba)
Injections. Medications injected directly into plaques may include
interferon alpha 2b
collagenase (Xiaflex)

To date, collagenase is the first and only medication specifically approved for Peyronie’s disease.

Medical therapies. A urologist may use medical therapies to break up scar tissue and decrease plaque size and curvature. Therapies to break up scar tissue may include:

-high-intensity, focused ultrasound directed at the plaque
-radiation therapy––high-energy rays, such as x-rays, aimed at the plaque
-shockwave therapy––focused, low-intensity electroshock waves directed at the plaque

A urologist may use iontophoresis––painless, low-level electric current that delivers medications through the skin over the plaque––to decrease plaque size and curvature.

A urologist may use mechanical traction and vacuum devices aimed at stretching or bending the penis to reduce curvature.

A urologist may recommend surgery to remove plaque or help straighten the penis during an erection. Medical experts recommend surgery for long-term cases when symptoms have not improved erections, intercourse, or both are painful
the curve or bend in the penis does not allow the man to have sexual intercourse

Some men may develop complications after surgery, and sometimes surgery does not correct the effects of Peyronie’s disease––such as shortening of the penis. Some surgical methods can cause shortening of the penis. Medical experts suggest waiting 1 year or more from the onset of symptoms before having surgery because the course of Peyronie’s disease is different in each man.

A urologist may recommend the following surgeries:

grafting. A urologist will cut or remove the plaque and attach a patch of skin, a vein, or material made from animal organs in its place. This procedure may straighten the penis and restore some lost length from Peyronie’s disease. However, some men may experience numbness of the penis and ED after the procedure.

Plication. A urologist will remove or pinch a piece of the tunica albuginea from the side of the penis opposite the plaque, which helps to straighten the penis. This procedure is less likely to cause numbness or ED. Plication cannot restore length or girth of the penis and may cause shortening of the penis.
device implantation. A urologist implants a device into the penis that can cause an erection and help straighten it during an erection. Penile implants may be considered if a man has both Peyronie’s disease and ED. In some cases, an implant alone will straighten the penis adequately. If the implant alone does not straighten the penis, a urologist may combine implantation with one of the other two surgeries. Once a man has an implant, he must use the device to have an erection.

A urologist performs these surgeries in a hospital.

Lifestyle Changes:

A man can make healthy lifestyle changes to reduce the chance of ED associated with Peyronie’s disease by

Lifestyle Changes

A man can make healthy lifestyle changes to reduce the chance of ED associated with Peyronie’s disease by

quitting smoking
reducing alcohol consumption
exercising regularly
avoiding illegal drugs

How can Peyronie’s disease be prevented?

Researchers do not know how to prevent Peyronie’s disease.
Eating, Diet, and Nutrition

Researchers have not found that eating, diet, and nutrition play a role in causing or preventing Peyronie’s disease. quitting smoking
reducing alcohol consumption
exercising regularly
avoiding illegal drugs

How can Peyronie’s disease be prevented?

Researchers do not know how to prevent Peyronie’s disease.
Eating, Diet, and Nutrition

Researchers have not found that eating, diet, and nutrition play a role in causing or preventing Peyronie’s disease.

Peyronie’s Disease

Some men have a penis that curves to the side, upward or downward when erect. This is common, and a bent penis in most men isn’t a problem. Generally, a bent penis is only a cause for concern if your erections are painful or if the curvature of your penis interferes with sex.

Peyronie’s disease is a disorder in which scar tissue, called a plaque, forms in the penis—the male organ used for urination and sex. The plaque builds up inside the tissues of a thick, elastic membrane called the tunica albuginea. The most common area for the plaque is on the top or bottom of the penis. As the plaque builds up, the penis will curve or bend, which can cause painful erections. Curves in the penis can make sexual intercourse painful, difficult, or impossible. Peyronie’s disease begins with inflammation, or swelling, which can become a hard scar.

The plaque that develops in Peyronie’s disease is not the same plaque that can develop in a person’s arteries. The plaque seen in Peyronie’s disease is benign, or noncancerous, and is not a tumor. Peyronie’s disease is not contagious or caused by any known transmittable disease.

Early researchers thought Peyronie’s disease was a form of impotence, now called erectile dysfunction (ED). ED happens when a man is unable to achieve or keep an erection firm enough for sexual intercourse. Some men with Peyronie’s disease may have ED. Usually men with Peyronie’s disease are referred to a urologist—a doctor who specializes in sexual and urinary problems.

How does an erection occur?

An erection occurs when blood flow increases into the penis, making it expand and become firm. Two long chambers inside the penis, called the corpora cavernosa, contain a spongy tissue that draws blood into the chambers. The spongy tissue contains smooth muscles, fibrous tissues, spaces, veins, and arteries. The tunica albuginea encases the corpora cavernosa. The urethra, which is the tube that carries urine and semen outside of the body, runs along the underside of the corpora cavernosa in the middle of a third chamber called the corpus spongiosum.

An erection requires a precise sequence of events:

  • An erection begins with sensory or mental stimulation, or both. The stimulus may be physical contact or a sexual image or thought.
  • When the brain senses a sexual urge, it sends impulses to local nerves in the penis that cause the muscles of the corpora cavernosa to relax. As a result, blood flows in through the arteries and fills the spaces in the corpora cavernosa like water filling a sponge.
  • The blood creates pressure in the corpora cavernosa, making the penis expand.
  • The tunica albuginea helps trap the blood in the corpora cavernosa, thereby sustaining the erection.
  • The erection ends after climax or after the sexual urge has passed. The muscles in the penis contract to stop the inflow of blood. The veins open and the extra blood flows out of the penis and back into the body.

What causes Peyronie’s disease?

Medical experts do not know the exact cause of Peyronie’s disease. Many believe that Peyronie’s disease may be the result of

  • acute injury to the penis
  • chronic, or repeated, injury to the penis
  • autoimmune disease—a disorder in which the body’s immune system attacks the body’s own cells and organs

Injury to the Penis

Medical experts believe that hitting or bending the penis may injure the tissues inside. A man may injure the penis during sex, athletic activity, or an accident. Injury ruptures blood vessels, which leads to bleeding and swelling inside the layers of the tunica albuginea. Swelling inside the penis will block blood flow through the layers of tissue inside the penis. When the blood can’t flow normally, clots can form and trap immune system cells. As the injury heals, the immune system cells may release substances that lead to the formation of too much scar tissue. The scar tissue builds up and forms a plaque inside the penis. The plaque reduces the elasticity of tissues and flexibility of the penis during erection, leading to curvature. The plaque may further harden because of calcification––the process in which calcium builds up in body tissue.

Autoimmune Disease

Some medical experts believe that Peyronie’s disease may be part of an autoimmune disease. Normally, the immune system is the body’s way of protecting itself from infection by identifying and destroying bacteria, viruses, and other potentially harmful foreign substances. Men who have autoimmune diseases may develop Peyronie’s disease when the immune system attacks cells in the penis. This can lead to inflammation in the penis and can cause scarring. Medical experts do not know what causes autoimmune diseases. Some of the autoimmune diseases associated with Peyronie’s disease affect connective tissues. Connective tissue is specialized tissue that supports, joins, or separates different types of tissues and organs of the body.

How common is Peyronie’s disease?

Researchers estimate that Peyronie’s disease may affect 1 to 23 percent of men between 40 and 70 years of age.1 However, the actual occurrence of Peyronie’s disease may be higher due to men’s embarrassment and health care providers’ limited reporting.1 The disease is rare in young men, although it has been reported in men in their 30s.1 The chance of developing Peyronie’s disease increases with age.

Who is more likely to develop Peyronie’s disease?

The following factors may increase a man’s chance of developing Peyronie’s disease:

  • vigorous sexual or nonsexual activities that cause microscopic injury to the penis
  • certain connective tissue and autoimmune disorders
  • a family history of Peyronie’s disease
  • aging

Vigorous Sexual and Nonsexual Activities

Men whose sexual or nonsexual activities cause microscopic injury to the penis are more likely to develop Peyronie’s disease.

Connective Tissue and Autoimmune Disorders

Men who have certain connective tissue and autoimmune disorders may have a higher chance of developing Peyronie’s disease. A common example is a condition known as Dupuytren’s disease, an abnormal cordlike thickening across the palm of the hand. Dupuytren’s disease is also known as Dupuytren’s contracture. Although Dupuytren’s disease is fairly common in older men, only about 15 percent of men with Peyronie’s disease will also have Dupuytren’s disease.2 Other connective tissue disorders associated with Peyronie’s disease include

  • plantar fasciitis––inflammation of the plantar fascia, thick tissue on the bottom of the foot that connects the heel bone to the toes and creates the arch of the foot
  • scleroderma––abnormal growth of connective tissue, causing it to get thick and hard; scleroderma can cause swelling or pain in muscles and joints

Autoimmune disorders associated with Peyronie’s disease include

  • systemic lupus erythematosus––inflammation and damage to various body tissues, including the joints, skin, kidneys, heart, lungs, blood vessels, and brain
  • Sjögren’s syndrome––inflammation and damage to the glands that make tears and saliva
  • Behcet’s syndrome––inflammation of the blood vessels

Family History of Peyronie’s Disease

Medical experts believe that Peyronie’s disease may run in some families. For example, a man whose father or brother has Peyronie’s disease may have an increased chance of getting the disease.


The chance of getting Peyronie’s disease increases with age. Age-related changes in the elasticity of tissues in the penis may cause it to be more easily injured and less likely to heal well.



“Let’s first take a little review of the Principles of Hand Hygiene that are endorsed by the AMA and the AAFP:

  1. Wash your hands when they are dirty and before eating;
  2. Do not cough into your hands;
  3. Do not sneeze into your hands;
  4. Above all, do not put your hands into your eyes, ears, and mouth.

S.C. Johnson Professional (


National Handwashing Week


When & How to Wash Your Hands

Keeping hands clean through improved hand hygiene is one of the most important steps we can take to avoid getting sick and spreading germs to others. Many diseases and conditions are spread by not washing hands with soap and clean, running water. If clean, running water is not accessible, as is common in many parts of the world, use soap and available water. If soap and water are unavailable, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol to clean hands.

When should you wash your hands?

  • Before, during, and after preparing food
  • Before eating food
  • Before and after caring for someone who is sick
  • Before and after treating a cut or wound
  • After using the toilet
  • After changing diapers or cleaning up a child who has used the toilet
  • After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
  • After touching an animal, animal feed, or animal waste
  • After handling pet food or pet treats
  • After touching garbage

How should you wash your hands?

  • Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold), turn off the tap, and apply soap.
  • Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Be sure to lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
  • Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice.
  • Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
  • Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.

What should you do if you don’t have soap and clean, running water?

Washing hands with soap and water is the best way to reduce the number of germs on them in most situations. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Alcohol-based hand sanitizers can quickly reduce the number of germs on hands in some situations, but sanitizers do not eliminate all types of germs and might not remove harmful chemicals.

Hand sanitizers are not as effective when hands are visibly dirty or greasy.

How do you use hand sanitizers?

  • Apply the product to the palm of one hand (read the label to learn the correct amount).
  • Rub your hands together.
  • Rub the product over all surfaces of your hands and fingers until your hands are dry.

 Almost everyone has dropped food on the floor and still wanted to eat it. Some people apply the “5-second rule” — that random saying about how food won’t become contaminated with bacteria if you pick it up off the floor in 5 seconds or less.

The 5-second rule has become such a part of our culture that scientists actually tested it. As you can probably guess, they found that the “rule” is mostly myth: Bacteria can attach to food even if you pick it up super fast. So, depending on which types of bacteria happen to climb on board, you could still get sick.

Here are two facts to consider whenever you feel tempted by the 5-second rule:

  1. A clean-looking floor isn’t necessarily clean. A shiny linoleum floor is probably cleaner than a 1970s-era carpet. But even clean, dry floors can harbor bacteria. Newly washed floors are only as clean as the tools used to wash them (picture eating food off the mop in the cafeteria if you need a visual). Even with a brand-new mop or sponge, stubborn germs can still remain on the floor after cleaning.
  2. Fast is betterbut it may not be fast enough. Although a piece of food does pick up more bacteria the longer it’s on the floor, bacteria can attach to it instantly. So any food that makes contact with the floor can get contaminated if conditions are right. And foods with wet surfaces, like an apple slice, pick up bacteria easily.

When in Doubt, Toss It Out

Some bacteria are not harmful. But others can torture you with miserable stuff like diarrhea. Even if there’s no visible dirt on your food, you can still get sick. You just can’t tell what kinds of bacteria may be lurking on the floor.

So what are you to do with the piece of watermelon that just slipped from your grip? The safest choice is to throw it out. Or let the dog have it. (And there’s another thing to consider — even the 5-second rule can’t get around the fact that your food may have landed right in a spot where Fido parked his butt.)