This news, no doubt, will startle any woman: Men react positively to beautiful women.
This revelation, courtesy of a study from the Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital, measured the brain responses of a group of heterosexual men when they looked at pictures of men and women. The study was published in the Nov. 7 issue of the journal Neuron.
Researchers found that looking at beautiful women activated the same reward circuits in men's brains as food, pleasant tastes and cocaine. The study also found that men reacted negatively to pictures of attractive men, suggesting they were threatened by other good-looking males.
One of the study's authors concedes the revelation that men like beautiful women isn't shocking. But he says the response isn't "conditional" and compared it to the same function found in lizards.
Love and marriage. If one of these guys happens to marry a woman who causes positive activity in his brain, chances are pretty good that marital discord will wreak havoc on his blood pressure and heart rate, a new study finds.
Researchers at the Wake Forest University School of Medicine in Winston-Salem, N.C., studied the blood pressure and heart rate of 58 married couples when they were presented with hypothetical conflict-causing situations.
Of the 116 people, 46 were avoiders and 70 were initiators of relationship discussions. Sixty percent of the initiators were women, while two-thirds of the avoiders were men.
Avoiders had higher blood pressure readings than initiators. But men who initiated relationship discussions also had higher heart rates than men who avoided discussions.
Looks as if men have much better physiological responses to just looking at pictures of women than having relationships with them. No word on what physiological effect this situation has on women.
Ouch. According to a Reuters report from the European Cancer Conference in Lisbon, Portugal, "A 'virtual colonoscopy' procedure has arrived that is far more satisfactory to colorectal cancer patients than traditional colonoscopy."
An Italian oncologist made the finding from three years of performing noninvasive spiral CT scans on patients who previously had annual colonoscopy surgery to monitor their conditions.
It took us exactly one read of the story to conclude that a CT scan is preferable to having a surgeon root around the colon.
Fat, careless and drunk. Michigan State University's College of Osteopathic Medicine issued an alert last month to coincide with the start of deer hunting season in the state.
"Because hunters are not necessarily physically active except during deer season, underlying undiagnosed heart disease can mean trouble when they exert themselves in the field," the school warns, doing little to dispel the stereotype of hunters being fat.
MSU physicians also caution against accidental shootings in the field. "The thrill of the hunt can mean shooting first and thinking later," they say, doing little to dispel the stereotype of hunters being trigger-happy.
And the school also warns against consuming alcohol while out hunting, doing little to dispel the stereotype of hunters being drunks.
The alert, which also includes tips on dealing with chest pain and treating gunshot wounds, concludes with this advice: "Use common sense."
Back to the future. Amid all the vendors selling computerized data products and services at the recent Medical Group Management Association conference was an Irving, Texas, company called Records 1-2-3 that advocates a more quaint approach to the HIPAA security and privacy regulations that have physicians confused.
With signs screaming "No computer necessary" and "A low-tech medical records solution," Records 1-2-3 hawked its paper templates for about 35 symptom-based and diagnosis-based conditions commonly found by family physicians.
Company founder and President David Vinson, M.D., maintains that the paper forms are easy to fill out, help physicians reach higher coding levels, prevent medical errors and, more importantly, are easier to implement (and much less expensive) than highly touted electronic medical records systems.
As if to drive the point home, Alfred Huang, M.D., representing the company at the San Antonio conference, employed a fully manual sign support system.