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Health line

By Times Staff
Published May 2, 2006

Free skin cancer screenings

Of course the Tampa Bay Devil Rays play their home games indoors, but we do have to be in the sun to reach the Trop for day games. So the team is joining with the American Academy of Dermatology to encourage fans to protect themselves from skin cancer, the most common form of cancer in the United States. Fans will have two opportunities to be screened for skin cancer, for free, this month: On Saturday, the Academy will make a nationwide attempt to set a Guinness world record for the most skin cancer screenings performed in a single day. To find the location of a screening, visit And fans attending the Devil Rays game May 13 can be screened at Tropicana Field as part of the Play Smart When It Comes To The Sun public service program.

Varying degrees

Researchers have found that older people generally have body temperatures lower than the number often considered normal - 98.6 degrees. A study conducted at Winthrop-University Hospital in Mineola, N.Y., determined that body temperature in healthy older people ranged from 94 to 99.6 degrees. The researchers also found that temperature differs not only among individuals but with time of day. The study was limited in scope: It involved 100 nursing home residents and 50 individuals living in the community. Ages ranged from 65 to 98. Using electronic digital thermometers, researchers took temperatures of the nursing home residents three times over three days; temperatures of those in the community were taken only once. The increase in body temperature during the day was greatest in those under 75. The finding was published in the December issue of the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

Confused? You're not alone

Seemingly conflicting health research findings are leaving Americans confused. According to an April survey of 1,016 baby boomers, more than one-half are frustrated by conflicting health and nutritional information. More than 4 out of 10 surveyed said they felt overwhelmed by inconsistent health reports. Almost three-fourths of the respondents think they hear too much information about fad diets. And half of all surveyed have started at least one diet in the past three years. The survey was conducted for General Mills, partners with LLuminari, a network of health experts, to create the Web site, as a resource for educational food and nutrition information. The site provides recipes and tips on nutrition, exercise and fitness to maintain a successful path to health.

Surgery may end epileptic seizures

A recent study indicates brain surgery may produce a seizure-free life for some epileptics. The illness affects about 3-million Americans. Though many can keep epilepsy in check by taking medication, an estimated 40 percent of epileptics have seizures that cannot be controlled solely by drugs. The study involved 399 people who had epilepsy surgery after having had seizures for an average of 20 years. Six months after surgery, 81 percent of the participants were seizure- free or nearly so. People ages 18 to 40 had better results. The study was reported in the April issue of the Journal of Neurosurgery, on the Web at For more on epilepsy, go to

[Last modified May 2, 2006, 08:16:07]

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