Male Birth Control Pill on the Horizon?


Male Birth Control Pill on the Horizon?For women, there are several birth control options available. For men it’s a different story, but perhaps not for long.

Researchers at the University of Edinburgh recently discovered a gene that is essential for the development of sperm. The gene, known as Katnal 1, caused temporary infertility in male mice when blocked. The team behind the study indentified that Katnal 1 was used to regulate a structure known as microtubules – parts of sperms that are needed for support and the acquisition of nutrients. Breaking down these microtubules inhibits sperms’ ability to move throughout the testes during their maturation.

The gene’s discovery not only paves the way for a male contraceptive pill, but could also aid in better understanding and potentially treating cases of male infertility.

Currently, there are not many pharmaceutical contraception options for men. Recent options have included testosterone injections, which are used to trick the brain in order to shut sperm production down. However, these options rely on hormones, while the new findings could help create a hormone-free alternative that bypasses common side-effects like mood swings and acne.

Much more research is needed before the drug becomes available, but researchers are confident we could see its development within the next decade.

If you are currently considering pharmaceutical contraception or other options, please schedule a consultation with one ofour expert Beverly Hills urologists by calling 855.360.9119.

Obesity linked to more advanced and aggressive thyroid cancer

Normal ThyroidObese patients are more likely than normal-weight patients to have advanced, aggressive forms of papillary thyroid cancer, according to a new study.

The researchers found that high body-mass index (BMI) was associated with more advanced cancer at the time of diagnosis. Obese and morbidly obese patients were more likely to have stage 3 or stage 4 cancer, and more likely to have the aggressive forms of the disease.

For the study, the researchers reviewed the medical records of 443 patients who underwent total thyroidectomy as an initial treatment for papillary thyroid cancer or its variations. The patients were divided into four groups based on their BMI; normal weight, overweight, obese, and morbidly obese.

Obese and morbidly obese patients were significantly more likely than thinner patients to have stage 3 or 4 disease at diagnosis. The same patients were also more likely to have laryngeal nerve dysfunction after thyroidectomy.

While the cause of the increase in papillary thyroid cancer in the overweight and obese population could be multifactorial, the findings certainly provide one more reason to be concerned about the current obesity epidemic.

The reasons for these adverse findings are not yet certain, but the findings are enough to warrant more careful screening for thyroid cancer among obese patients. If you are an obese or morbidly obese patient and would like a screening, give us a call at (855) 360-9119.

Colonoscopy and colon cancer screening

The first method is a stool test that checks your bowel movements for blood. The second method is a sigmoidoscopy exam, which looks at the lower part of your colon. The third option is a colonoscopy. It is similar to a sigmoidoscopy but with one important difference; the entire colon can be viewed.

Colonoscopy is the endoscopic examination of the large bowel and the distal part of the small bowel. It provides a visual diagnosis and grants the opportunity to find ulcers, colon polyps, tumors, and areas of inflammation or bleeding.

A colonoscopy can be used to:

  • Collect tissue samples
  • Take out abnormal growths
  • Screen test to check for cancer
  • Screen test to check for precancerous growths in the colon or rectum

Men and women 50 years old and older should have a colonoscopy every 10 years.

Minimally invasive parathyroidectomy

MIP is typically performed through a smaller incision than the bilateral exploration, usually 1-3 cm. This technique allows for a much shorter surgery when compared to the traditional surgery that explores both sides of the neck.

MIP is not just one procedure, but a variety of techniques that can be used either alone or in combination. Central components include pre-operative localization, intraoperative PTH testing, radio-guidance, and local anesthesia.

There are several potential advantages of MIP over a bilateral neck exploration, including but not limited to:

  • Smaller incision
  • Improved cosmesis
  • Shorter operative time
  • Creation of less scar tissue
  • Fewer problems with low calcium levels after surgery
  • No risk to nerves and other structures on the “normal” side of the neck
  • Less invasive operation means less pain
  • Less recuperation time needed
  • Less expensive than the standard operation
  • Cure rate is higher than the standard operation
  • No risk of hypoparathyroidism

Treating hemorrhoids before pregnancy is key

As you may or may not know, hemorrhoids can be itchy and mildly uncomfortable – or downright painful. Pregnancy can be uncomfortable and painful as well, which is why it is important to remove hemorrhoids before the pregnancy in order to minimize discomfort.

Hemorrhoids occur in up to 50% of the adult population. They are often misunderstood by patients and physicians alike, and most often treated incorrectly.

There are a number of different treatment options available, and it depends on the location and severity of the hemorrhoids. For internal hemorrhoids, La Peer gastroenterologist, Dr. Nowain, uses an internal hemorrhoid treatment technique called hemorrhoid banding ligation. (Our Colorectal and General Surgery Department also offer a hemorrhoidectomy, which is a surgical procedure that removes both types of hemorrhoids.)

Banding ligation is a brief, painless, and surgery-free procedure with little to no recovery time. Because of its low risk of complication and high success rate, it is a very popular procedure among women who are planning on getting pregnant.

Dr. Nowain uses a gentle suction to hold the hemorrhoid in place and then places a small rubber band around the tissue just above the hemorrhoid.. This is a painless procedure as it is above the nerve line (the dentate line). The procedure simply cuts off the blood supply to the hemorrhoid, which will fall off after a day or two. You will not feel it when it falls off, and will pass it when you use the restroom. Once the hemorrhoid has fallen off, the wound will heal in a few days.

Because women cannot have this procedure during pregnancy, Dr. Nowain strongly suggests you take necessary preventative measures and receive treatment before becoming pregnant.

This procedure can also be performed for men and women of all ages who suffer from hemorrhoids. There is no reason you should have to live with recurring flare-ups and increasing pain of hemorrhoids when there is a simple and painless way to get rid of them. Instead, contact Beverly Hills hemorrhoid expert Dr. Nowain today by calling (855) 360-9119, and end your discomfort for good.

Non Cosmetic Uses for Botox

Botulinum toxin, popularly known as Botox, is used for various cosmetic and medical procedures.

Most people know about Botox because of its ability to create more youthful faces, but few people realize that there is much more to it. The use of Botox has been studied and documented for over 20 years, and its unique ability to treat a variety of medical problems is now being recognized.

Muscle Spasms

One of the most frequent non-cosmetic uses of Botox is to treat muscle spasticity. Muscle spasms may be the result of damage from a stroke, traumatic injury, cerebral palsy, or disk disease. In each of these scenarios, the tightness of a muscle group limits mobility or causes pain. Botox helps relax the muscle, often with dramatic improvements.


As people who have experienced it will tell you, migraines are a serious and painful problem. Luckily, Botox prevents many of these persistent headaches and decreases the overall frequency of them.

Lazy Eye

This is a condition in which there is a lack of simultaneous coordination between the extraocular muscles of the eyes, causing an outward gaze abnormality and problems with binocular vision including depth perception.

Botox is one of the options for medical treatment. It is injected into the more dominant extraocular muscle causing muscular paralysis, evening out the muscle balance on the affected eye.

Bell´s Palsy

Botox helps reduce spasms and make the facial muscle movements as optimal as possible. With these injections, the patient is likely to see a reduction in facial drooping and an improvement in control functions. Typically, the injections must be repeated every three to six months depending on the severity of the Bell´s palsy.


For some people, the human response that provides cooling for the body is abnormally active. This can have significant social and professional implications. Because dealing with heavy sweating can cost a lot of time and money, Botox makes a good option. Transmission to the sweat glands can be efficiently interrupted by Botox, and the results may last as long as six months. For many, this is a life-altering treatment.

If you would like to know more about the benefits of Botox, give us a call at (855) 360-9119.

New FDA Approved Erectile Dysfunction Tablet

There is new hope for the 30 million men in the United States, who suffer from erectile dysfunction (ED).  On April 27, 2012 VIVUS, Inc. announced that the FDA has approved Stendra (avanfill) tablets for the treatment of erectile dysfunction.  The FDA approval marks the first new prescription drug to treat ED in nearly ten years.

Over 1,200 men with ED participated in the clinical studies of Stendra.  The men were given Stendra doses of 50mg, 100mg and 200mg, which all showed signs of significant improvement in erectile function compared to those men given a placebo.  77% of men with general ED were able to get erections with Stendra, compared to 54% of men taking a placebo.  63% of men with diabetes related ED were able to get erections after taking Stendra compared to 42% of men taking a placebo pill.

VIVUS recommends that Stendra should be taken roughly 30 minutes before sexual activity and should not be taken more than once a day.  Some of the participants in the clinical trials noticed the drug took effect within 15 minutes.  Other men reported improved erections more than six hours after consuming Stendra.

ED can be cause by physical conditions including: heart disease, high cholesterol, diabetes, obesity, metabolic syndrome, tobacco use, alcohol use, treatments for prostate cancer or enlarged prostate, surgeries, and age.  There are an estimated 52% of men between 40 and 70 years old who are suffering from ED.  50% of those men complain about the available ED drugs available and are dissatisfied with their treatment.  The potential market for ED treatment is endless as sales of PDE5 inhibitors surpassed $5 billion dollars in worldwide sale in 2011.

Stendra is a PDE5 inhibitor, which is in the same drug class as Viagra, Cialis, Levitra and Staxyn.  Side effects of Stendra are similar to the drugs in its drug class including; headache, increase in body temperature, flushing, back pain, and stuffy nose.  Do not take Stendra if you take nitrates, often prescribed for chest pain.

If you’d like to learn more about Stendra and the important safety information please visit