michigancancercenter.com(DETROIT) -- The Michigan doctor who gave patients fake cancer diagnoses so he could bilk Medicare is a "monster and a master of deceit," one of his patients told a judge on Tuesday.
Dr. Farid Fata pleaded guilty in the fall to fraud, money laundering and conspiracy charges after scamming Medicare for millions of dollars.
Many of Fata's former patients were left with life-long health problems from incorrect treatment.
"He's a monster and a master of deceit," one victim named Steve told the court via a statement. "I lost three years of my life to cancer treatments. I hate this man. Some may choose to forgive, I never can. Maybe God can."
Fata’s sentencing continued Tuesday with victims sharing their stories. Some victims never had cancer, others were over treated and some had treatment for a different cancer than the one they were diagnosed with because it brought in more money.
The wife of the patient identified as Steve, read his statement to the court saying he would never forgive Fata for what he had done.
"It was a roller coaster physically, emotionally, financially and spiritually. I was raped by X-rays and treatments," the patient said through his statement. "What was the amount of radiation I was given? We'll never know."
Another patient, named Christopher, said cancer treatment for a relatively simple case of testicular cancer left him with heart and liver damage due to chemotherapy overdose. He said his kidneys nearly failed and he had one testicle removed, even though that was medically unnecessary.
"They were appalled that I was sitting there in front of them after so many life-threatening treatments that were nearly fatal," Christopher said of his new doctors after leaving Fata's treatment.
All of the victims who gave testimony on Tuesday asked that Fata be given the maximum sentence of life in prison.
"I trusted him with my life. It was medical genocide," one victim named Patricia told the court.
"I was a cash cow," Patricia continued. "The bone marrow biopsy was torture. I had to tell my son I had terminal cancer. I don't know how anyone could do something so horrible. You showed no mercy for me so I have no mercy for you."
Maggie Dorsey sobbed that her treatment left her with lifelong pain and side effects.
"I trusted him," she told the court. "I didn't deserve to end up like this."
In spite of the emotional testimony, Fata showed no emotion and appeared to stare at the floor instead of directly facing the victims.
Prosecutors said that more than 500 patients had received unnecessary treatment under Fata's care before his arrest in 2013.
iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- A beauty trend is blowing up on social media where teens are posting thousands of videos with the hashtag, “dontjudgechallenge,” mocking glamour shots by intentionally making themselves look exceptionally unattractive.
The hashtag has been used more than two million times in less than two weeks.
“Essentially the idea was, ‘This is not what I really look like, but you judged me,’” Dr. Kavita Ajmere, a child and adolescent psychologist, told ABC News. “I think that’s the awareness that they wanted to create."
The trend started off as a campaign for teens taking a stand against body-shaming, attempting to make themselves appear less attractive by painting on thick unibrows, acne, missing teeth and wearing glasses, then transforming into what they perceive as “beautiful.”
But now, the popular hashtag is causing backlash online with thousands criticizing it, saying the videos don’t empower people but rather mock them, doing more harm than good.
“Shouldn’t ‘Don’t Judge Me’ mean you shouldn’t care about what someone looks like at all?,” online user Campbell Urrutia asked in a video. “You shouldn’t care about if they’re hot or not.”
“When you do things like beauty shaming, you’re still focusing on someone’s external world and you’re really not getting to know somebody,” Ajmere added.
One 17-year-old named Abigail took to Twitter to voice her outrage, saying the movement missed its mark.
“The ‘Don’t Judge Challenge’ is so stupid,” she said in an online video. “You’re making it seem like people who wear glasses, who have acne, who don’t have good eyebrows are ugly and unattractive. It makes no sense.”
A new hashtag called “Beauty In All Challenge” is now striking back, encouraging people to embrace their true beauty.
“We need to accept each other for who we are,” said Ajmere. “We need to accept ourselves for who we are."
Alexander Traksel/iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- A new study from Duke University found that some people are biologically 'older' and aging at a faster rate – even though their chronological age is the same.
The study examined about 1000 adults born within the same year, all 38 years old.
But looking at 18 different biomarkers of physiologic aging in their tissues and cells, their “biological” ages ranged from 30 to 60-- some people were aging at twice the rate of others.
Study participants who were biologically 'older' and aging 'faster' scored lower on tests of strength, balance, coordination and IQ tests.
Not only did the participants who aged faster say they felt less healthy, when Duke undergraduates were asked to estimate ages of participants by looking at photos, they tended to rate the fast-agers as looking older than they were.
Susannah Mushatt Jones of Brooklyn, New York has been named the oldest living person. (Guinness World Records)(NEW YORK) -- At 116 years old, Susannah Mushatt Jones of Brooklyn, New York is now officially the world's oldest living person.
Born on July 6, 1899, Jones became the record holder on June 17, 2015 at the age of 115 years and 346 days, Guinness Book of World Records confirmed to ABC News on Monday.
"While she lost her eyesight years ago and is hard of hearing, Jones isn’t bed-bound and only takes a few medications a day," Guinness wrote in a press release. "Ms. Jones, also known as “T,” which is short for auntie, to her 100 nieces and nephews and “Susie” to friends, will also become the oldest living female."
The centenarian revealed to Guinness that she attributes lots of shut-eye to her long life on this earth.
Jones will celebrate her 116th birthday today with family and again with a larger party among her housing community and friends on July 7.
The oldest person ever to have lived was Jeanne Calment of France, also a female, who lived to 122 years and 164 days.
ABC News(NEW YORK) — J.Lo, Beyonce and Kim Kardashian may have the most talked-about derrieres in Hollywood, but when it comes to finding that perfect fit, 34-year-old Natasha Wagner influences the fashion industry more that those celebrities.
Wagner is a “fit model” for some of the world’s most popular denim brands, including Gap, Levi’s and 7 For All Mankind. She got the job by having the Goldilocks of behinds — not too big, not too small. She’s perfectly average, and thanks to her, jeans have never looked so good on all of us.
“Fit models are probably the most important people that you’ve never heard of in the world of the denim industry,” Good Housekeeping’s style director Lori Bergamotto said on Good Morning America. “They’re not like runway models. What they’re looking for in a fit model is the perfect average. Basically what they want is somebody who’s slim, but has a curved bottom.”
Fit models act as live mannequins helping designers check fit, drape and appearance of their clothes before they hit the shelves, and industry insiders say when it comes to fit, Wagner has the best bottom in the country.
Denim’s it girl behind the seams is a size 6, has a 28-inch waist and stands at 5 feet 8 inches tall. She’s the most in-demand fit model with a steady schedule.
“I’m definitely thin but curvy. Some of my clients have said I have all the curves in the right places,” Wagner said on GMA of her body. “I think it's perfectly imperfect. It’s perfect for what I do for my job.”
In addition to her good genes, Wagner keeps her size 6 by working out and eating right, and she said her clients are eager for her input.
“I think my feedback is often helpful for my clients,” she said. “I do this every day, all day long. I know exactly how a jean should fit.”
"We talk about diet a lot, we talk about exercise a lot, but what we don't talk about is our individual relationships with food. Food is the biggest obstacle for most of us to get to the body that we want," she said. "We start eating because we want our muscles more toned, that's more proteins."
The actress and wife of A-list star Will Smith said that for more energy, she eats more veggies.
In fact, the actress says she’s more confident now than 20 years ago.
"When I look at myself in the mirror, and I see the well-written up woman that I am, I am damn proud. I think I'm more beautiful now than I've ever been," she added.
Pinkett Smith also posted a picture last year, adding to her confidence and admitting she might have gained weight, which she liked.
"My girlfriend sent me this pic, and I could clearly see the weight I've gained which is about…8-10 pounds. I think I will keep it. I like being a lil…fuller;)" she confidently wrote on Facebook.
iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Cancer researchers are examining if eating citrus might put people more at risk for developing melanoma since researchers have long known that certain citrus juices on the surface of the skin can make skin so sensitive to light that people can end up with serious burns.
Dr. Abar Qureshi, director of dermatology at Brown University and Rhode Island Hospital, and his team wanted to know if simply eating citrus could also lead to a higher risk of sensitivity to light and as a result developing skin cancer.
To do this, researchers, in collaboration with Rhode Island Hospital and Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, examined health and diet data from more than 100,000 participants for up to 26 years. All of those involved were health professionals -- participants of the ongoing Nurses' Health Study and Health Professionals Follow-Up Study.
The researchers found that those who ate the most citrus fruits or juices (about 1.6 servings of citrus per day) had a higher incidence of melanoma, up to 36 percent higher than their peers, according to the study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.
However, researchers noted there were also inconsistencies that would need further explanation. For example, some people who had grapefruits were at a high risk for cancer, but those who had grapefruit juice were not.
Qureshi, the senior author of the study, said the study findings were interesting but needed to be replicated before doctors started advising anyone to start changing their diet.
“It’s an early signal. We would never ask people to stop consuming overall healthy fruits and vegetables,” said Qureshi, who advised people to be careful about exposure to sunlight if they are concerned.
"It’s combination of citrus plus sun" that needs investigating, Qureshi said.
An editorial published in the same journal found that more study was needed in part because the population, all health professionals, did not accurately represent the general population and some of the findings were at odds with what has previously been determined by past studies.
GH-Photography/iStock/Thinkstock(LONDON) -- Financial markets are controlled by testosterone more than you think.
A new study from Imperial College London published in Scientific Reports reveals men with higher testosterone levels make bigger financial risks.
The researchers conducted the study using a trading floor simulation with volunteers buying and selling assets among themselves. In one experiment, volunteers kept their natural hormone levels, but in another the volunteers were administered either cortisol or testosterone.
The results showed that both cortisol and testosterone caused the subjects to shift their investments towards riskier assets.
"Our results suggest that changes in both cortisol and testosterone could play a destabilizing role in financial markets through increased risk-taking behaviour, acting via different behavioral pathways," said the researchers.
According to the researchers, the high-stress environment of the markets could lead to a higher level of cortisol and testosterone in traders. In that kind of an environment, cortisol levels increase because the body is being prepared for a fight-or-flight response.
iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- A social media trend is leaving dermatologists burned up this summer.
Many people who see their skin as a blank canvas for art get a tattoo, but what about getting something else that may be just as permanent?
A new social media trend called #sunburnart has people showing off their burned skin after strategically placing sunscreen or fabric in artsy patterns and letting the sun work its magic.
Naturally, dermatologists and medical professionals are not interested in the craze.
The Skin Cancer Foundation released a statement urging people to find another creative outlet because of the irreversible damage sunburn can cause.
"Sunburns cause DNA damage to the skin, accelerate skin aging, and increase your lifetime skin cancer risk," said the statement. "In fact, sustaining five or more sunburns in youth increases lifetime melanoma risk by 80 percent. On average, a person’s risk for melanoma doubles if he or she has had more than five sunburns."
The statement also said a "complete sun protection regimen" is recommended and sun-worshippers should be using sunscreen daily.
iStock/Thinkstock(TYLER, Texas) -- A 7-year-old Texas girl responded with grace under pressure, reportedly saving a woman who had a seizure from drowning in a pool.
Dasia Wessner was visiting the Glascow Trails Community mobile home park swimming pool in Tyler, Texas, Wednesday when she noticed a family friend in trouble, ABC News affiliate station KLTV reported.
Natalie Foster, 34, was lying face down in the water and not moving.
"At first I thought she was playing with me,” Dasia said, “but then I turned her around and I knew she was having a seizure.”
By her account, Dasia jumped into the pool to help Foster, who was floating in the pool’s deep end. Dasia said she put Foster’s arm through the pool rack so she wouldn’t slide back down.
Unable to turn on Foster’s cellphone to get help, the girl ran to her aunt’s house nearby, and Foster eventually received aid. Foster told KLTV that she is at home and recuperating.
Dasia said she was never afraid during the ordeal. "I knew if she died she would be in heaven and she would be happy,” the girl said. “And she wouldn't be sick again, but if she stayed here she would also be OK.”
iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- A vaccine to help protect against HIV may be closer to reality than previously though, one study indicates.
The study, published in the journal Science, found that one potential HIV vaccine can be used to protect rhesus monkeys from the disease. Fifty percent of the monkeys given the vaccine were protected, researchers say, when exposed to the virus in a manner that infected all of the monkeys in a control group.
The Daily Mail reports that the results could prompt Johnson & Johnson to test the vaccine in humans.
kzenon/iStock/Thinkstock(FARGO, N.D.) -- A North Dakota man who wanted to keep his obituary short and simple chose to communicate the news of his death in just two words.
The 85-year-old Douglas Legler died on June 27. His daughter Janet Stoll told ABC affiliate WDAY-TV "he just wanted it short and sweet. He came up with it. He said 'all i want is "Doug Died."' We were just trying to follow his wishes."
Stoll said her dad didn't try to be charismatic or funny, he just was. And despite having a bit of a gruff exterior at times, Stoll said he had a kind and tender heart.
And while Legler didn't want to go on and on about details of his life, the public might now know more about him than they ever would have had he just run a typical obituary. The news outlet that ran the obit also ended up running a news story about the obit, and about Legler.
"He was very lighthearted and had a great sense of humor," Stoll said. "He was very quick-witted, and funny. He was one of a kind, he really was. Everyone loved him that met him."
Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Hilary Swank is taking a break from her work to care for her dad, who recently had a lung transplant.
"My dad is living with me," the 40-year-old Oscar winner revealed to HuffPost Live on Thursday. "I'm his sole caretaker right now."
Swank said she has even put work on hold in order to care for her father, Stephen Swank, as he recovers.
"It's a certain amount of time [to serve as a caretaker], but in a lifespan it's a blink of an eye," Swank said. "There’s been job opportunities I've passed on, and things that I said 'I can't,' but really what we're here for is our family."
Making the decision to do so wasn't hard, she said.
"There is nothing I want to do more other than being with my dad in this time of need," the Million Dollar Baby actress said. "And if it wasn't me taking care of him, I think I would always look back and regret that opportunity to be able to care of him and help him through this extraordinary time."
She called it a "true honor."
The time spent together has also brought Swank and her father closer together. The pair weren't always so close, especially during Swank's younger years.
"We're super close," she said. "The bond that we've made in this time, might make up for some of that time we didn't have. We didn't have that one-on-one time together. It's actually kind of healing."
Meanwhile, father and daughter are making new memories.
"He's good-natured and giving. He has a great sense of humor. It's easy to be with my dad," she said. "It's easy to hang out. He's an easy guest to have in my home."
On Father's Day, Swank posted a photo of her and her dad on the beach.
"#HappyFathersDay to my dear Father!" she wrote. "And, to all the Fathers out there! Today and always we cherish you!!"