Electroconvulsive therapy still has a stigma, with the reputation of being a painful, disturbing procedure that wipes out memories and, if movies are to be believed, even creates zombies. Experts explain the reality—that ECT is a quiet procedure that provokes a short brain seizure, releasing huge amounts of neurotransmitters to reset the brain in what is the quickest and most dependable treatment for severe and often suicidal depression.
A look at the top medical headlines for the week of June 7, 2020 including: Researchers are working on an app with a sensor to test for COVID-19 using only a drop of saliva. Then, life was more stressful than it was 25 years ago… and for middle aged people, it’s much more stressful. Plus, A study shows that emergency room visits for children for mental health disorders has increased 60 percent of the last 10 years. And finally, a study shows that homeschooled adolescents have significantly lower abdominal strength and endurance than public school kids even though their BMI’s were the same.
A look at the top medical headlines for the week of May 31, 2020 including: A newly developed smartphone app is remarkably effective at predicting if a person is infected with COVID-19. Then biomarkers for A-L-S or Lou Gehrig’s disease can be found in a person’s teeth in the first decade of life. Then, a study shows that changing the way physical therapy is done can improve strength by an additional 30 percent. And finally, The labels on drinks for kids don’t help adults figure out which ones are real fruit juice and which are sugary, artificially flavored imitations.
Doctor’s appointments via smartphone have been available for some time but were little used except in remote areas due to insurance reluctance. Now telemedicine has been forced on us and on insurers by COVID-19 restrictions, and many providers swear by them. Three experts discuss.
Some experts believe the healthy lifespan eventually may be extended to hundreds of years through genetic manipulation. This brings many philosophical and ethical questions, which a noted science author discusses.
Big data is changing the world, but it’s been slow in coming to healthcare. An expert in healthcare IT explains how that’s changing and what it could mean to treatment.
Pre-medical students have typically majored in science, but some medical schools are finding that liberal arts and even music majors with no science background can do well. Some admissions officers and doctors believe they may even have advantages, given the importance of communications in the doctor-patient relationship. A musician-turned-med student, an admissions officer and a musical doctor explain.
Some agencies estimate that 50,000 children have been born in the US using donor eggs. But egg donation (or sale, as some insist) is not regulated, and while short term risks are known, few donors have been followed for years. Long term risks are not well understood. Experts discuss what we know… and what we don’t.
The availability of consumer DNA tests and databases has allowed long-hidden family secrets to be revealed, including mistaken paternity and unknown siblings. It has also taken the anonymity away from some cases of sperm donation. Two experts discuss the ethics of overturning this promised secrecy and the impact that the revelation of secrets can have on entire families.
A look at the top medical headlines for the week of September 8, 2019.
A look at the top medical headlines for the week of August 4, 2019.
Mobile health apps are becoming very popular, though some are being shown to have little benefit. Few barriers exist to almost anyone entering the field whether they have health expertise or not. Privacy is also a concern. Experts discuss how people can protect themselves and find apps that do what they want.
A look at the top medical headlines for the week of July 21, 2019.
Autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and lupus carry a genetic predisposition, but need an environmental trigger to take hold. Triggers are poorly understood, but some women claim their disease is a result of contraceptives, including birth control pills and IUD’s. Experts and one women suffering from autoimmune disease discuss the issue.
Preeclampsia, an irregularity in the placenta during pregnancy, is the leading cause of premature delivery worldwide, and causes nearly 20 percent of maternal deaths in the US. Little is known about its cause and how it can be treated, but an inexpensive new test could help flag those suffering from it and lessen complications. The test’s inventor discusses it and the disorder.