17-18 Segment 1: Late Effects of Childhood Cancer Treatment

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Doctors can cure cancer in children better than ever, but decades later, many survivors suffer from serious, chronic disease as a result of powerful cancer treatments. Often those survivors don’t get screening and treatment for late effects. Experts and survivors discuss how treatments influence life decades later, how survivors can get treatment they need, and new ways of treatment can lessen late effects.

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17-18 Segment 2: Doing Too Much For Terminal Patients

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Doctors often take extreme measures to save patients who are dying, and who might wish to die in peace. A critical care physician discusses how doctors are learning to resist their impulses to over-treat.

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Medical Notes 17-18

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Medical Notes this week…

One of the most dangerous professions of all is “firefighter.” But the job carries more than just the risk involved in answering a call. Nearly half of all on-duty deaths are a result of heart attacks, often after the call is over. Now a study in the journal Circulation may show why. Researchers say that extreme heat combined with physical exertion dehydrate the body, divert blood to the skin, lower blood pressure and increase blood clotting in the body. Firefighters involved in the study rescued a simulated victim during exposure to temperatures as high as 750 degrees.

People are supposed to get eight hours of sleep per night if they can but more than nine hours a night could be an early sign of dementia. A study in the journal Neurology finds that elderly people who consistently sleep more than nine hours a night have twice the risk of dementia over the next 10 years as people who sleep less. The risk climbs to six times normal in long sleepers without a high school degree.

A finally, if you want people to avoid junk food in vending machines, make them wait. In a study presented to the Society of Behavioral Medicine, researchers rigged vending machines with a 25-second delay before dispensing junk food, and a notice of the delay on the machine’s LED screen. Purchasers had a chance to buy something else to avoid the delay, and many did. Healthy snack purchases increased by as much as five percent.

And that’s Medical Notes this week.

Coming Up On Radio Health Journal Show 17-18

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Late Effects of Childhood Cancer Treatment: Doctors can cure cancer in children better than ever, but decades later, many survivors suffer from serious, chronic disease as a result of powerful cancer treatments. Often those survivors don’t get screening and treatment for late effects. Experts and survivors discuss how treatments influence life decades later, how survivors can get treatment they need, and new ways of treatment can lessen late effects.

Doing Too Much For Terminal Patients: Doctors often take extreme measures to save patients who are dying, and who might wish to die in peace. A critical care physician discusses how doctors are learning to resist their impulses to over-treat.

Stay in the loop! Follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook!

Subscribe and review on iTunes!

17-17 Segment 1: Penicillin Allergy? Probably Not

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Millions of Americans believe they are allergic to penicillin. However, most of them are wrong. Experts discuss how these misdiagnoses happen and what results when so many of us avoid the most effective, yet cheapest antibiotic.

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Subscribe and review on iTunes!

Click here for guest information and the transcript

17-17 Segment 2: Multiple Myeloma – Why is Iceland So Important?

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Scientists are tapping the entire adult population of Iceland for a clinical test for treatments for multiple myeloma, a blood cancer. An expert explains the disease and how a whole country is pitching in to fight it.

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Click here for guest information and the transcript

Medical Notes 17-17

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Medical Notes this week…

We’ve reported on how dogs can sniff out a variety of diseases in people with scientists trying to create a mechanical nose to do the same thing. Now a study presented to the American Chemical Society shows they’re making progress. Researchers have identified a signature odor in 90% of cases of prostate cancer and have developed a chemical test to detect it. Doctors are looking for an alternative to the PSA test to detect prostate cancer because of the high proportion of false positives.

People who are depressed have a surprisingly high risk for heart disease. A new study in the journal Atherosclerosis shows that depression is just as much of a cardiovascular risk as obesity and high cholesterol. The 10-year study finds that depression is to blame for about 15% of all heart disease deaths, a rate exceeded only by smoking and high blood pressure. About 350 million people around the world suffer from depression.

It might be easier to get into an argument when you’re tired because you’re misreading the emotions of other people. A study in the journal Neurobiology of Sleep and Circadian Rhythms shows that sleepy people have trouble interpreting some emotions in the faces of others compared to those who are well rested. Tired people can read fear and anger in others’ faces but more subtle emotions are misinterpreted far more often.

And finally, slightly more than half of parents give sports the green light for their kids but about one in every six completely rule them out. The reason? Concussions. The rest of parents, about a third of them, allow participation on a sport by sport basis, according to a Harris survey for the American Osteopathic Association. About two thirds of parents say basketball and baseball are ok for kids. But less than 20% approve of their children playing football.

And that’s Medical Notes this week.