Many survivors of breast cancer report having decreased sexual desire and drive. There are often several possible causes of diminished sex drive in women and it is difficult to know for certain which ones contributes the most. There are no specific treatments for this problem, although a full evaluation for physical causes, such as vaginal dryness, early menopause, hormonal imbalance, or depression is usually recommended. Loss of a breast, depression, anxiety about cancer coming back, and effects of chemotherapy and hormonal treatments all may play a role. Testosterone is known to increase female sexual drive but a recent study shows that increasing testosterone levels by applying a testosterone cream does not increase sex drive of women who survived breast cancer, according to a study published in the May 2 Journal of the National Cancer Institute . Debra Barton, Ph.D., of Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, and colleagues gave 150 women who survived breast cancer either a testosterone cream o...
It is time to retire the idea that depression is caused by a “chemical imbalance of the brain.” The chemical imbalance myth creates the false impression that our brains are some form of neurotransmitter porridge that can be rendered just right with squirts of serotonin and dopamine.
Thanks to at least two decades of research, we now have a number of good working models on what tends to go wrong in the brain during a depressive episode. A review article by Murali Rao and Julie Alderson in this month”s Current Psychiatry outlines four overlapping theories of depression. Let’s look at three of them:
Differences in neuron densities in various regions of the brain.
The effect of stress on neural growth and death.
Alterations in feedback pathways connecting the pre-frontal cortex to the limbic system.
The common denominator is what happens when the brain is exposed to chronic stress. Among other things, stress promotes the release of glucocorticoids. O...
Electrolytes are minerals that are normally in your body. Each one carries a very tiny electrical charge. Electrolytes are in your blood, urine, and other body fluids. Having the right balance of electrolytes helps your body keep fluids at proper levels. Sodium, potassium, chloride, and calcium are all electrolytes. You get electrolytes from the foods you eat and the fluids you drink, and you lose electrolytes when you sweat.
The symptoms of an electrolyte imbalance can include:
Chemotherapy can cause your electrolyte levels to become too low or too high. Changes to the amount of water in your body because of side effects such as vomiting or diarrhea also can cause an electrolyte imbalance.
Managing an electrolyte imbalance
If you think you may have an electrolyte imbalance, talk to your doctor. Your electrolyte levels can be checked with a blood or urine test. If you do have an imbalance your doctor may advise you to eat foods rich in that electrol...
You should knowAnswers to your question are meant to provide general health information but should not replace medical advice you receive from a doctor. No answers should be viewed as a diagnosis or recommended treatment for a condition. Content posted by community members does not necessarily reflect the views of Remedy Health Media, which also reserves the right to remove material deemed inappropriate.