Surface Issues

Dear Dr. Eva, I have an itchy rash under my testicles and on my inner thighs. I’ve been told it’s jock itch. I’ve used different creams, but it keeps coming back. Could this be a sign of something serious? T.J. Dear T.J., Probably not. Jock itch (the medical name is tinea cruris), which is caused by a fungus, is often hard to get rid of. You need to keep the area as clean and dry as possible, apply antifungal cream or powder twice a day every day, and keep applying it for a couple of weeks after the rash seems […]

Can we prevent cancer?

Dear Dr. Eva, At the age of 58 my partner has been diagnosed with cancer. We are both stunned. Because we both have a family history of cancer, we have done everything we can to lower our risk. We have had colonoscopies on the recommended schedule, exercise regularly, eat cruciferous vegetables at least three times a week, and take antioxidant vitamins daily. We don’t use alcohol or tobacco. I didn’t think this could happen. Are all the precautions we took pointless? Feeling Cheated Dear Feeling, Your precautions weren’t pointless. They have reduced your cancer risk and you should continue with […]

Two Measles Epidemics

There is currently a measles epidemic in the United States, and another, much larger one in Madagascar. In the US, there have been about 660 cases this year, mostly in young children in Washington state, Illinois, Texas, and New York. No deaths from measles have been reported in the US so far this year. Measles can develop into pneumonia and can lead to brain damage (from swelling of the brain) and blindness. Measles is transmitted by tiny droplets of fluid in the air. Droplets are produced when a person who is infected with measles sneezes or coughs. The droplets are […]

Telomeres and Longer Life

Dear Dr. Eva, Can you explain epigenetics and telomeres? There are a lot of supplements out now that are supposed to lengthen people’s life by making their telomeres longer. Any truth to that? Juan P. de Leon Dear Juan, I notice that you are using the name of Ponce de Leon, the Spanish explorer who came to Florida in 1513 looking for the Fountain of Youth. He did not find it. The search for longer life is as old as humans’ recognition of death. People have always looked for ways to lengthen our lives. The science of telomeres is complex […]

Trusting Your Doctor Or Not?

Dear Dr. Eva, I’m a gay man in a long-term monogamous relationship. I have never had any sexually transmitted disease. Is there any real reason to come out to my doctor? I’m uncomfortable with him assuming I’m straight, but I don’t want to embarrass him. Discreet Dear Discreet, First, if your suspicion that knowing you are gay would embarrass your doctor is correct, you may need a different doctor. I hope that he’ll respond in a friendly, comfortable way that shows he is not embarrassed. It’s important for your doctor to have at least a basic understanding of who you […]

Random Penis Questions

Dear Dr. Eva, Guys sometimes wake up with an erection. We call this a piss hard-on because it goes down after pissing. Is there a difference between this and an erection caused by sexual arousal? Thank you. Mike Dear Mike, There is no physical difference. Men have erections as part of the normal sleep cycle. These erections are not necessarily associated with sexual dreams. Because of these normal sleep erections, men often wake up with erections whether they need to urinate or not. Erections go down with urination because it is near-impossible to urinate when the penis is fully erect. […]

What is Leaky Gut?

Dear Dr. Eva, I am a woman in my 30’s. Over the last few years I have developed a lot of new digestive problems, with bloating, cramps, and diarrhea on and off. My chiropractor thinks I may have leaky gut and suggested some nutritional supplements. When I tried to find information on leaky gut, what I found was vague and contradictory. Can you explain leaky gut? Thanks, Gassy Dear Gassy, Leaky gut syndrome takes a few minutes to explain, so let me tell you first that there are lots of conditions other than leaky gut that are more likely to […]

Simple, Healthy Changes for 2019

Dear Readers, Lots of people make new year’s resolutions. When a person can’t stick with the changes they planned – which is what usually happens –  they may feel like a double failure. Not only are they continuing the behavior they meant to change, they also have been unable to keep their commitment. Considering this, my first thought was that maybe we should swear off the whole idea of New Year’s resolutions. But on second thought, it would be a shame not to make good use of the motivation for positive change that many people feel at the start of […]

Try Fun & Sober for the Holidays

Was the first resolution you made last New Year’s Day prompted by the headache and sick feeling you woke up with on January 1st? Maybe you had to deal with the consequences of a holiday car accident. Or was it the fallout from something you did at a party that everyone else remembers all too well, but you don’t? Many people, whether or not they have problems with alcohol the rest of the year, drink too much over the Christmas and New Years holidays. The same happens on birthdays, graduations, and other social occasions. Some people drink more at these times because […]

Thinking Through the Holidays Part 2: Family issues

If you enjoyed Thanksgiving, and if you enjoy the holidays with no problems every year (or almost every year), and if you don’t know anyone who struggles with the holidays, then this column is not for you. Look at a different page. The first part of this article, in the last issue of Baltimore OUTloud, explained how to use thought techniques to decrease or completely get rid of the negative, depressing thoughts that trouble many people around the holidays. Most of these are self-critical thoughts. Once you identify these thoughts, you can see that they are not true and can […]