Wednesday January 22, 2020

Weight-Loss Surgery May Reduce Skin Cancer Risk, Says a Study

Bariatric surgery may reduce skin-cancer risk: Study

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Skin cancer
There is a connection between obesity and malignant skin cancer. Pixabay

The researchers have found out that Bariatric surgery might help in reduction of skin-cancer risk, adding that, this finding can be described as a key piece of evidence that substantiates the connection between weight loss and malignant skin cancer.

“This provides further evidence for a connection between obesity and malignant skin cancer, and for the view that we should regard obesity as a risk factor for these forms of cancer,” said study first author Magdalena Taube from University of Gothenburg in Sweden.

That obesity is a risk factor for several types of cancer is well known. The same applies to the fact that people’s risk level can be lowered by means of an intentional weight reduction.

However, the evidence for a connection between obesity and weight loss on the one hand and, in particular, malignant skin cancer on the other has been limited to date. The findings, published in the journal JAMA Dermatology, used data from the SOS (Swedish Obese Subjects) study.

Other data sources included the Swedish Cancer Register kept by the Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare.

weight-loss skin cancer
The researchers found that bariatric surgery was associated with significantly reduced risks for melanoma and skin cancer in general. Pixabay

The researchers studied a group of 2,007 people who underwent bariatric surgery, and compared them with a control group of 2,040 individuals.

The surgery group included 23 individuals who developed malignant skin- related cancer, i.e. squamous cell carcinoma or malignant melanoma, in parallel with marked weight loss. The median follow-up period was just over 18 years.

The largest difference related to malignant melanoma: 12 people in the surgery group were affected, against 29 in the control group.

The researchers found that bariatric surgery was associated with significantly reduced risks for melanoma and skin cancer in general.

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The skin cancer risk reduction was not associated with baseline body mass index or weight; insulin, glucose, lipid, and creatinine levels; diabetes; blood pressure; alcohol intake or smoking. The results of this study suggest that bariatric surgery in individuals with obesity is associated with a reduced risk of skin cancer, including melanoma.

The findings also support the idea that obesity is a risk factor for malignant skin cancer, including melanoma, and indicate that weight loss in individuals with obesity may reduce their risk for this severe form of cancer. (IANS)

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Promotional E-Cigarettes Posts on Instagram Outnumber Anti-Vaping Content: Study

E-cigarette popular on Instagram despite anti-vaping content

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e-cigarettes
Despite "The Real Cost" awareness campaign launched by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2018, nearly one third of American teenagers are estimated to use e-cigarettes. Pixabay

Promotional e-cigarettes posts on popular photo-sharing platform Instagram outnumber anti-vaping content 10,000 to one, according to a new study and health news.

Despite “The Real Cost” awareness campaign launched by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2018, nearly one third of American teenagers are estimated to use e-cigarettes, the researchers said.

The study, published in the journal Frontiers in Communication, highlights the limited impact of the FDA campaign, while also using deep learning – an artificial intelligence method – to better understand the marketing tactics used by vaping companies.

“US public health officials have been calling vaping among youth an epidemic and have been putting a lot of effort into trying to stop this epidemic by introducing #TheRealCost anti-vaping campaign but this stark imbalance in the volume of posts has caused the FDA message to be overwhelmed by marketing from the vaping brands,” said study researcher Julia Vassey from University of California in the US.

e-cigarettes
Many teenagers continue to view e-cigarettes as healthier than conventional cigarettes, but vaping is associated with inflammation, reduced immune responses and breathing troubles. Pixabay

Many teenagers continue to view e-cigarettes as healthier than conventional cigarettes, but vaping is associated with inflammation, reduced immune responses and breathing troubles, the study said.

To further understand how vaping is perceived on social media, research team collected 245,894 Instagram posts spanning from before and after the #TheRealCost campaign launch.

The team also conducted interviews with five vaping influencers and eight college-age social media users. “We focused on Instagram because the vaping influencers we interviewed for this study identified Instagram as their most important social media marketing platform,” Vassey explained.

“Based on the results, the FDA anti-vaping campaign is not very popular and we saw Instagram user comments disputing the FDA claims of damaging health effects from nicotine and calling the campaign propaganda,” Vassey added.

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In contrast to the FDA’s intentions, the study found that vaping posts received nearly three times more “likes” after the campaign launch. They also found that there were six times as many posts that had greater than 100 likes.

According to the researchers, participants in the focus groups suggested that the anti-vaping campaign promoted scare tactics rather than offering guidance on how to quit vaping. (IANS)