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Tip Sheet: A Woman's Journey - 10/15/2013

Tip Sheet: A Woman's Journey

Release Date: October 15, 2013

The following are summaries of selected presentations from among 32 prepared by Johns Hopkins faculty physicians for the 19th annual “A Woman’s Journey” (AWJ) symposium, slated for Saturday, Nov. 16, at the Hilton Baltimore located at 401 West Pratt Street Baltimore, Md. 21201. To cover the symposium, set up interviews or get further details, call John M. Lazarou at 410-502-8902 or email Jlazaro1@jhmi.edu

TESTOSTERONE IN WOMEN
A DISCOVERY THAT MAY OFFER HOPE
PLAYBOOK FOR WOMEN
WEIGHT OF OBESITY
RISKY BUSINESS
SWEET DREAMS
BODY CONTOURING
PRESSURE COOKER
FAMILY TIES
EMOTIONAL ASPECTS OF AGING
CELL-EBRATION
TO ERR IS HUMAN, TO FORGIVE DIVINE

TESTOSTERONE IN WOMEN
Despite conventional wisdom, sexual dysfunction in women is quite common, and loss of testosterone, which is more than a man’s hormone, affects sexual drive in both genders. The sex hormone works in women to help build body tissue, just as it does in men. Testosterone levels peak in women's mid-20s and then steadily decline by an average of 50 percent at 45, drop dramatically further at menopause and continue to fall as women age. Adrian Dobs, M.D., M.H.S., professor in the Departments of Medicine and Oncology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and director of the Johns Hopkins Clinical Research Network, will discuss the biological origin of testosterone in women, its role in female sexuality, and how changes in testosterone levels are diagnosed, evaluated and modified.

A DISCOVERY THAT MAY OFFER HOPE
From losing weight to knowing their family history, women can do a lot to lower their risk of developing certain types of cancer, and improve their chances for survival if they do develop one of them, according to the Society of Gynecologic Oncology (SGO). Amanda Nickles Fader, M.D., associate professor of gynecologic oncology and director of the Kelly Gynecologic Oncology Service and the Minimally Invasive Surgery Center in the Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, will discuss how the use of specialized cervical DNA tests may change the outcome for ovarian and endometrial cancers. Fader, who specializes in the evaluation and surgical management of women with gynecologic cancer, is a widely published and internationally recognized surgeon and will provide details of new research that may lead to early detection of ovarian and endometrial cancers and improve survivorship while highlighting the incidence, risk factors and emerging screening methods for these tumors.

PLAYBOOK FOR WOMEN
Are women at a higher risk than men for certain sports injuries? Experts say the answer is “yes,” and that women are more prone than their male counterparts to specific injuries because they have relatively looser ligaments, wider hips that put additional pressure on the knees, and weaker quadriceps and hamstrings. Sameer Dixit, M.D., an assistant professor of orthopedic surgery and medicine and a sports medicine specialist at Johns Hopkins, can offer tips for reducing injury risk among women who engage in Pilates or Zumba, use an elliptical machine or play golf. He also speaks about immediate steps to take to treat a knee injury, tennis elbow, torn rotator cuff or sprained ankle.

WEIGHT OF OBESITY
Excessive weight can profoundly influence the health of those struggling to lose even a few pounds and those who struggle to keep them off. Sadly, people tend to regain lost weight and often then some. Sally Radovick, M.D., The Lawson Wilkins Professor of Pediatrics and director of the Division of Pediatric Endocrinology at The Johns Hopkins Children’s Center, will moderate a panel on obesity and weight loss. The panel features Anne O. Lidor, M.D., M.P.H, F.A.C.S., an associate professor of surgery and director of the Upper Gastrointestinal Surgery Center at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine; Kimberly Gudzune, M.D., assistant professor of medicine within the Division of General Internal Medicine at The Johns Hopkins Hospital; and Anthony Kalloo, M.D., professor of medicine and director of the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology at The Johns Hopkins Hospital. The group plans to describe successful strategies to combat obesity over time, including diet and bariatric surgery.

RISKY BUSINESS
News media reports frequently offer conflicting reports about the value of diet, exercise and other lifestyle factors in cancer prevention. That’s because the science itself is evolving, and although there is evidence that lifestyle choices have an influence on cancer risk, pinning down specifics can be elusive. Kala Visvanathan, F.R.A.C.P., M.B.B.S., M.H.S., an oncologist and epidemiologist at Johns Hopkins, identifies established and new factors linked to breast, ovarian and other cancers, and will elaborate on evidence-based ways to reduce cancer risk. She also will discuss early detection strategies, including cancer screening tests.

SWEET DREAMS
An estimated 18 million Americans fail to get a good night’s sleep. Charlene Gamaldo, M.D., associate professor neurology, medicine, and psychiatry in the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and a professor in the university’s Bloomberg School of Public Health, is also medical director of the Johns Hopkins Hospital Sleep Disorders Center. She will suggest and discuss lifestyle and behavioral approaches to better sleep, including ways to avoid sleep disturbances. She explains what “normal” sleep patterns are and are not, provides evidence for sleep differences between genders, and parses the value of drugs and devices in maintaining good sleep habits.

BODY CONTOURING
Body contouring is a general term that refers to any surgical procedure that alters body shape, often but not always for weight loss purposes. Want to learn who is a good candidate for breast augmentation, tummy tucks, liposuction and other popular procedures? Michele A. Manahan, M.D., assistant professor of plastic and reconstructive surgery at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, will talk about risks and benefits to know and think about before “going under the knife,” and provide before-and-after illustrations of cosmetic treatments, including body sculpting, skin treatments and nonsurgical facelifts.

PRESSURE COOKER
Hypertension, which affects about 30 percent of U.S. adults, is on the rise as the population ages, adding to widespread risk of heart attacks, strokes and kidney failure. Gregory Prokopowicz, M.D., assistant professor of medicine in the Division of General Internal Medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, distinguishes among types of hypertension, factors contributing to hypertension and recommended lifestyle modifications and drug treatments.

FAMILY TIES
Actress and activist Angelina Jolie’s revelation last spring that she underwent breast removal to reduce cancer risk linked to known breast cancer genes opened the door to many conversations about the impact of genetic science on women’s lives. Joann Bodurtha, M.D., M.P.H., a professor in the McKusick-Nathans Institute of Genetic Medicine and the Department of Pediatrics at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, will explain how innovations in genetic research can be used in medical diagnosis to improve health across the lifespan. And she will offer insight into the possibilities available for a genetic checkup for women and their families.

EMOTIONAL ASPECTS OF AGING
“Are my best days behind me?” “Can I age gracefully?” These are questions most women (and men) ask themselves in their advancing years. Susan Lehmann, M.D., associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Johns Hopkins Medicine, is also director of both the Geriatric Psychiatry Day Hospital Program and the Psychiatry Clinic at The Johns Hopkins Hospital, and she has some answers. Lehmann can discuss the psychological, neurological and emotional changes that do and do not necessarily occur with increasing age, and offers strategies for staying as young as you can as long as you can. She highlights information about normal changes in personality and physiology. In sensitive remarks, she also discusses recent studies that shed light on effective approaches for maintaining emotional well-being as we age.

CELL-EBRATION
Stem cells grown in the laboratory carry genetic blueprints for a variety of hereditary disorders such as Huntington's disease, spinal muscular dystrophy and cystic fibrosis, and thus are considered ideal research tools for designing models to understand disease progression, as well as new treatments. Erika Matunis, Ph.D., professor in the Department of Cell Biology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, provides an overview of adult and embryonic stem cell research, and future prospects for individualized medicine.

TO ERR IS HUMAN, TO FORGIVE DIVINE
Forgiveness is one of humanity’s great challenges. The process can be difficult for both the one who asks forgiveness and the person who grants it. The emotional stress from conflict also can lead to negative health consequences including anxiety and depression. According to Karen Swartz, M.D., an assistant professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and director of clinical programs at the Johns Hopkins Mood Disorders Center, the act of forgiveness can be very powerful.  Swartz will outline factors that enable some people to easily forgive family members, friends and partners, and offer reasons why others may struggle to do so.

For the Media

Media contacts:

John M. Lazarou
410-502-8902
jlazaro1@jhmi.edu

Helen Jones
410-502-9422
hjones49@jhmi.edu

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