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The Psychological Burden of HNC Survivorship on Patients and Caregivers

An often neglected burden of HNC survivorship is that on the psychological effects of head and neck cancer on both the patients and caregivers. How can we, the providers, help?

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Radiation Fibrosis - Development & Impact in HNC Patients

Radiation, commonly used in the treatment of head and neck cancer, may negatively affect healthy cells by increasing the production of the protein, fibrin which damages soft tissues in the treatment field potentially leading to trismus, or limited mouth opening. Trismus affects patients negatively by making it difficult to speak, eat, maintain good oral hygiene, receive dental procedures and it even has the potential to complicate intubation. In patients that receive radiation treatments, approximately 30% will develop trismus. If the treatment field includes the pterygoid or masseter muscles incidence rises to above 80%. Loss of maximal interincisal opening (MIO) is continual and progressive in these patients. Therapeutic exercises will need to continue for the rest of the patient's life! The good news is that trismus is preventable and treatable with exercise therapy using jaw motion rehab systems such as the OraStretch press. 
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HPV Vaccine is Key in Fight Against Cancer

HPV Vaccine In The News!!!!

Published in The Lancet, an important new study demonstrates that vaccines against the human papillomavirus (HPV) are in fact decreasing HPV infections including precancerous cervical lesions and anogenital warts. This study indicates that the HPV vaccine has been more effective than expected, reducing rates of HPV infection in the vaccinated population and FURTHERMORE reducing rates of HPV-related diseases in the non-vaccinated population (herd immunity). 

In June 2019, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices  approved the use of the HPV vaccine in some people through the age of 45. By expanding the pool of approved people, more insurance providers may cover the vaccine. 
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CranioRehab Update and Research Refresh

CranioRehab Update & Research Refresh. Review "Correlation Between Radiation Dose to Pterygoid and Masseter Muscles with Trismus" and "Successful Rehab of Facial Burns Using Jaw Motion Rehab Systems Including the OraStretch Press". Learn about CranioRehab products.
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Actress Aims to Destigmatize HPV- Related Cancers

In an effort to end the shame surrounding cancers caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV), actress Marcia Cross shares her personal story with anal cancer as well as her husband's with throat cancer. 
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Xerostomia in HNC Patients

Xerostomia, "dry mouth" is due to reduced or absent saliva production. It may affect a patient's quality of life and can lead to serious health problems! Learn about the signs, symptoms and managing xerostomia. 
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IMPORTANT HPV VACCINATION UPDATE!!!

On October 5, 2018, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the administration of the Gardasil 9 vaccine for women and men between the ages of 28-45 years. Previously the vaccine was indicated for individuals up to the age of 27 years. "Gardasil 9 prevents certain cancers and diseases caused by the nine HPV types covered by the vaccine". Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) can cause head and neck cancer in men and women. It is the cause of most oropharyngeal cancers in United States. These cancers and their treatment may lead to trismus (limited mouth opening) and dysphagia (difficulty swallowing). 

The expansion in vaccination ages follows a study in which 3,2000 women between the ages 27-45 years were followed for approximately 3.5 years and it was found that Gardasil was 88% effective in preventing certain HPV related infections and cancers. The results were inferred to apply to men as well.

For further information, please see the complete FDA News Release at: https://www.fda.gov/NewsEvents/Newsroom/PressAnnouncements/ucm622715.htm
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HPV and Oral Cancer - Signs and Symptoms

HPV is the most prevalent sexually transmitted virus. The best screening for HPV related oral cancer is by a medical or dental professional. However there are signs and symptoms that the individual can monitor. 
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Why can't I Suck out of a Straw after Wisdom Teeth Removal and Oral Surgeires?

Why Your Oral Surgeon Tells You Not To Use A Straw After Oral Surgery Procedures?
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Recovery Advice for having your Wisdom Teeth Pulled.

Preparation Advice from the Tooth Fairy for after your wisdom tooth or third molar Extraction. Tips,
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Warning: TMD “Diagnostic Tools” Proven To Be Inaccurate

Does your doctor want to charge you to use EMG, Kinesiography, or Sonography to study or diagnose your TMJ disorder? You might want to get a second opinion.

A new study shows that many electronic diagnostic devices were no better than clinical exams at diagnosing TMJ disorder (TMD).
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Do I have to go to the Dentist every six months? Should I?

Should I go to the dentist every 6 months? How often should I go?

You probably don't need to go that often, but high risk adults, should maybe go even more often. How often should you go?
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Don't risk infection, Most People aren't Washing their Hands or are Doing it Wrong. Are you?

Do You Wash Your Hands after using the Bathroom?

Most of us don't. New studies show that we often do not wash our hands correctly, or AT ALL.

food poising from dirty hands sickens some 24 million people a year. If you're in the hospital for surgery, chemo, radiation, trauma, or to visit the doctor, you often have a weakened immune system and are at heightened risk for infections. Learn more about how often others fail, and how you can better protect yourself.
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Is Our PAIN Visible??

“Subjectivity” is the main issue when asked the question: Are you having any pain”? Now researchers can see where and how pain acts in your brain.
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Tips for Great Oral and Dental Care for Patients with Disabilities

Problems with dental care? Quest, the magazine for the MDA Foundation, had a great article by Bill Greenberg with tips and ideas on how to maintain good oral health in people with neuromuscular disease, muscular distrophy, trismus and other disabilities. Tips include special toothbrushes, finding a dentist, and treating trismus.
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Internal Derangement: A photographic explaination of the Temporomandibular Joint through MR Imaging

Internal derangementInternal derangement is a Temporomandibular Joint disorder which manifests it's self in the abnormal position of the TMJ disk. It is 3-5 times more common in women, then men. You can find the details of this interesting Essay by The Boston University School of Medicine, on Medscape Nurse News.

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Explaining Your Symptoms: Tips from a Family Physician

When it comes to visiting our Doctors and Emergency Rooms some patients overly down-play their symptoms.  Rod Moser, PA, PhD has a great piece on WebMD on how to be more accurate and precise when explaining our symptoms for an improved diagnosis and treatment.


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