Thursday, May 10, 2007

"I can't do that, Jim. Someone stole my trailer hitch."

The perfect woman has reflective lips—Here's one you won't see around much, but what are friends for. A study just published in the New England Journal of Medicine reports that people who have oral sex with more than five others in their lives have a greater chance of getting throat cancer. They also have a better chance of getting a date, but that's another story. In research at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (and I'm delighted to know that goes on in this city), the suspect is the human papilloma virus (HPV), which also pops up in other orifices when used for pleasure. The suspicion makes sense because it is already established that HPV helps trigger oropharyngeal squamous-carcinoma, an extremely unpleasant form of cancer. The Hopkins folks used 200 patients with that cancer and 100 controls in the hospital-based study. They tested blood and saliva samples and measured the samples against lifestyle variables, including sex habits. Must have been a helluva questionnaire. Those who had oral sex with six or more other people were 3.4 times as likely to have the throat cancer. That's not all they found:
  • Those who had 26 or more vaginal-sex partners during their lifetime had a wonderful time but also had 3.1 times more likely to have the throat cancer.
  • Those who had a really uproariously life had even more likelihood of the disease as the threat increased with the acts.
  • Oropharyngeal cancer was most linked to HPV type 16. Cigarettes and booze did not see to alter the result.
That gal of legend who could suck the chrome off a trailer hitch probably ought to be more careful. Dang.
[Thank you, Charles]

The rocket goes up, who cares where it comes down; it's not my department, ask Wernher von BraunPoor Scotty. It isn't that the anti-matter warp field failed again and he had just one hour to save the ship and crew. The rocket worked beautifully. It's just that no one knows where it came down.

The rocket carrying the ashes of James Doohan, Scotty in the original Star Trek is lost. It was shot to the edge of space along with the ashes of astronaut Gordon Cooper on April 29. The capsule crashed down somewhere in New Mexico. Unfortunately, no one can find it. It's lost in mountainous terrain, hard to reach, according to a spokeswoman for Space Services Inc., which ran the "memorial spaceflight." And the weather is crappy. Eighteen other people's remains, besides Doohan and Cooper are on the capsule. The company charges $495, so even you can afford a trip to space and to get lost in the woods.

1 comment:

Ken said...

Thanks for including the link to the paper. I have only had a quick read.

Note the odds ratios of 1 for age and sex, the case-controls were matched on age and sex, so of course they will be 1. Dumb to include it in the table. As they were interested in the risks related to sex, they probably should either have matched on smoking history as well, or fitted logistic regression models to correct for the smoking. Would be a lot clearer than the stratified aalysis.