Amanda Burbank

407 posts

Amanda J. Burbank is a poet, writer and editor. She's had a number of pieces published in a variety of places, from local papers and magazines to online blogs to literary magazines. She's worked on the other side of the profession as well, from beta reading for multiple aspiring novelists to assisting a literary agent to working as an editor herself. She's also worked as a teacher, homeschooling her three children for three years, learning with them as they were continually, joyously discovering. She graduated from Huntingdon College with a bachelor of arts majoring in English and Psychology. She and her husband and children live in Wetumpka, Alabama.

Do most melanomas come from preexisting moles?


A recent study published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology looked to see if most melanomas come from preexisting moles as is often believed. The researchers performed a systematic review and meta-analysis to determine the incidence and prevalence of nevus-associated melanoma, or melanoma associated with preexisting moles. They analysed 38 observational cohort and case-control studies, more than 20,000 melanomas, and found that only 29.1 percent likely were associated with preexisting moles. Seventy-one percent arose de novo, or started from new. Melanomas associated with preexisting moles were not as thick, and the patients with those moles were younger by ... Read More

Women open up on Instagram about hair loss

bald woman, Taxotere - Pixabay image

September is Alopecia Areata Awareness Month. NewBeauty honors the month by reposting several women’s Instagram posts where they open up about their experiences with alopecia and show photos of themselves just as they are, without wigs or hats. Alopecia is the medical term for hair loss and can be used to describe those who experience hair loss for a variety of reasons. Alopecia can be caused by genetics, which is often called pattern hair loss, and risk generally increases with age. An autoimmune disease known as alopecia areata can affect those of any age and often appears in childhood. It ... Read More

Alopecia story inspires girls to donate hair for children’s wigs

alopecia, woman, hair loss, Taxotere - Shutterstock

September is Alopecia Areata Awareness Month where many who suffer from the autoimmune disease that causes hair loss, often beginning in childhood, are reaching out to their families, friends and communities and telling their stories with the hopes of raising awareness and support for those who face the challenges of this disease. There is, as of yet, no cure for alopecia areata. One young woman in Northern Ireland heard just such a story and was inspired to do something. Agriland reports on what happened when Nicola Edgar (24 years old) watched a local documentary about hair loss and spoke to ... Read More

Talc ovarian cancer verdicts cause Indian consumers to exercise caution

talc bottles

The American verdicts against international pharmaceutical giant Johnson and Johnson has been raising awareness about the link between talc-based powders and ovarian cancer around the world. Last month, a California jury ordered the company to pay $417 million in damages over its failure to warn consumers of its products’ ovarian cancer risk. Previously four Missouri juries found in favor of the women who had brought suit against Johnson and Johnson, with verdicts totaling more than $300 million: Best Media Info, in an article on brands that have lost consumer trust, said of Johnson and Johnson in a discussion of the ... Read More

CDC warns men are more likely to get skin cancer


“Men, especially those with lighter skin, are more likely than anybody else to get skin cancer, including melanoma — the deadliest kind of skin cancer,” says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The CDC says that this might be because men over their lifetimes get more sun exposure than women, are more likely to have outdoor careers, and that women’s beauty care products often contain sunscreen. They report that only 14 percent of men use sunscreen on both their face and exposed skin when outside in the sun for more than an hour. Men may also be exposed ... Read More

Study compares Zytiga and Taxotere for high-risk prostate cancer treatment

alopecia, woman, hair loss, Taxotere - Shutterstock

A recent study compared Zytiga (abiraterone acetate) plus prednisolone (AAP) versus Taxotere (docetaxel). The study analysed data gathered in STAMPEDE, a Phase 2/3 trial, which has prospectively studied more than 9,000 patients and includes six different approaches to treating high-risk or metastatic hormone sensitive prostate cancer. Two of the treatments included in STAMPEDE were AAP and Taxotere added to the standard hormone deprivation therapy, with 377 patients randomly assigned into the AAP treatment group and 189 into the Taxotere group. Both drugs had previously shown promise in improving survival in patients with high-risk prostate cancer when compared to the standard treatment ... Read More

What should a woman’s body smell like?

talc bottles

Racism, misogyny and capitalism in the beauty industry Emilie and Bridget of Stuff Mom Never Told You from How Stuff Works recently aired an impassioned episode of their podcast about talcum powder and ovarian cancer and how Johnson and Johnson profited off women’s insecurities about their bodies, specifically targeting minority women even though they were aware of their products’ cancer risk. “Why are we all sprinkling powders in our underpants in an attempt to make our body parts smell less like body parts?” asked Bridget. The ladies asked where and when did we begin to feel disgusted and repulsed by ... Read More

Study: plant-based diet effective for reflux symptoms, alternative to PPIs

PPI proton pump inhibitor

Medscape reports that a study just published in JAMA Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery suggests that diet could control symptoms of laryngopharyngeal reflux (LPR) more effectively than proton pump inhibitors (PPIs). Guidelines for those suffering from LPR contradict, with some recommending PPI therapy and others saying patients with the condition who lack typical symptoms should avoid PPIs. Robert T. Kavitt, MD, MPH, from the University of Chicago, Illinois, in an editorial in JAMA Otolaryngology accompanying the study’s results, says, “Given the conflicting approach of society guidelines, as well as limited data regarding the role of medical therapy in the treatment of ... Read More

One woman recounts alopecia journey

bald woman, Taxotere - Pixabay image

During the month of September, which is Alopecia Areata Awareness Month, many people are telling their stories, not only encouraging others who suffer from this autoimmune disease that causes hair loss, but also introducing themselves to the public, hopefully helping to destigmatize baldness by sharing their personal stories of overcoming adversity. The Suffolk News Herald allows Ericka Counts a platform to tell hers. Counts said she began noticing her hair loss during her freshman year in college. Alopecia areata affects people of all ages, but it often first appears during childhood. It is an autoimmune disease that can lead not ... Read More

Heartburn drugs linked to pancreatic cancer

PPI proton pump inhibitor

Proton pump inhibitors, such as Prevacid, Nexium and Prilosec, used by millions of Americans to treat heartburn and acid reflux have in recent years been linked to a varying side effects. A few of these include risk of kidney injuries, Clostridium difficile (C. difficile) infection, and hip fractures. The drugs are widely believed to be overused and many professionals are recommending deprescribing whenever possible. According to Gastroenterology & Endoscopy News researchers at the University of Pennsylvania have identified another concerning side effect. Their study presented this year linked PPIs to an increased risk for pancreatic cancer. “There’s a lot of ... Read More