Medical Forefront

By Dr. Jean Layton | curated finds from the medical forefront

For Cosmetics, Let the Buyer Beware

When you wash your hair, clean or moisturize your skin, polish your nails, or put on makeup, deodorant or sunscreen, do you ever think about whether the product you’re using may do more harm than good?<p>Maybe you should. Thanks to a lack of federal regulations, the watchword for consumers of …

Health Care

Vitamin D receptor-mediated stromal reprogramming suppresses pancreatitis and enhances pancreatic cancer therapy.

2014 Sep 25;159(1):80-93. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2014.08.007.<p>1Gene Expression Laboratory, Salk Institute, La Jolla, CA 92037, USA.2Cold Spring Harbor …

Neuroscience

Is the U.S. Ready for a Single-Payer Health Care System?

Ironically, as congressional Republicans have been trying to replace the Affordable Care Act, the ACA’s popularity is at an all-time high, and the majority of Americans now believe that it is the federal government’s responsibility to provide health care for all Americans. This shift in sentiment …

Health Care

Hair product use and breast cancer risk among African American and White women | Carcinogenesis

Exposures to carcinogens in hair products have been explored as breast cancer risk factors, yielding equivocal findings. We examined hair product use …

Research

What Cookies and Meth Have in Common

As a psychiatrist, I have yet to meet a patient who enjoys being addicted to drugs or compulsively overeating.<p>Why would anyone continue to use recreational drugs despite the medical consequences and social condemnation? What makes someone eat more and more in the face of poor health?<p>One answer is …

The Brain

Forget the Blood of Teens. This Pill Promises to Extend Life for a Nickel a Pop

Nir Barzilai has a plan. It’s a really big plan that might one day change medicine and health care as we know it. Its promise: extending our years of …

Longevity

Cuts to Medicaid May Limit Access to Nursing Homes

ORANGE, Va. — Alice Jacobs, 90, once owned a factory and horses. She raised four children and buried two husbands.<p>But years in an assisted living center drained her savings, and now she relies on Medicaid to pay for her care at Dogwood Village, a nonprofit, county-owned nursing home here.<p>“You think …

The Right Question

<i>Wrong Question. Wrong questions get wrong answers.</i><br>-- <b>Master Gregory</b>, Seventh Son, 2014<p>Is healthcare a right?<p>You know, a right?<p>With all the many ideas …

In Washington state, a healthcare repeal lesson learned the hard way

Republicans in the state of Washington didn’t wait long in the spring of 1995 to fulfill their pledge to roll back a sweeping law expanding health coverage in the state.<p>Coming off historic electoral gains, the GOP legislators scrapped much of the law while pledging to make health insurance …

Health Care

FDA Clears First Cancer Drug Based On Genetics of Disease, Not Tumor Location

By Natalie Grover and Bill Berkrot<p>Merck & Co's immunotherapy Keytruda chalked up another approval on Tuesday as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration …

Cancer

Trump, Shouting ‘Death Spiral,’ Has Nudged Affordable Care Act Downward

WASHINGTON — When Aetna, the health insurance giant, announced this month that it was pulling out of the Affordable Care Act’s insurance exchange in Virginia in 2018, President Trump responded on Twitter: “Death spiral!”<p>When Humana announced plans to leave all the health law’s marketplaces next …

The Best Replacement for Obamacare Is Medicaid

In defending their efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, Republican leaders in Congress argue that the insurance marketplaces created by the law are failing. They aren’t completely wrong.<p>Trouble began with faulty websites during the rollout in 2013. Since then, enrollment continues to be below …

What happened when Alzheimer’s patients were treated for the diseases we actually have cures for

Last summer, a research group from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) quietly published the results of a new approach in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. What they found was striking. Although the size of the study was small, every participant demonstrated such marked improvement …

Alzheimer's Disease

Trump: GOP health care bill 'guarantees' coverage for pre-existing conditions

<b>Washington (CNN) —</b> President Donald Trump says the Republican plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act "guarantees" coverage for Americans with pre-existing conditions -- a claim that could undercut the legislation the White House is currently pushing on Capitol Hill.<p>"Pre-existing …

ObamaCare

Dying at home might sound preferable. But I’ve seen the reality

Just 1% of terminally ill patients want to die in hospital, and yet more than a third do so – with good reason<p>“He is terminally ill, came in septic and they decided to resuscitate because there were no other directions,” says my intern.<p>The patient is in his 50s, gaunt and frail, too weak to even …

Doctors have finally found a more accurate way than BMI to determine whether your weight is healthy

After you hopped off the scale at your last doctor's visit, your physician might have shown you a colorful chart of your body mass index, or BMI.<p>The index, a measure of body fat based on your weight in relation to your height, can be traced back to the 1830s. Despite its popularity, it's now …

Mayo Clinic

Lyme Patients Are Bending The Old Rules Of Scientific Research, To The Dismay Of Some Scientists

Feeling neglected by traditional scientific research, thousands of chronic Lyme disease patients are turning to the internet to conduct a study of their own. Critics worry their data won’t be useful.<p>In late 2015, Lorraine Johnson was frustrated with what she felt was the slow progress of research …

Medicine

Non-O blood groups associated with higher risk of heart attack

Paris, France - 30 April 2017: Having a non-O blood group is associated with a higher risk of heart attack, according to research presented today at …

Diabetes

Obamacare Saved a Girl With Cancer. Trumpcare Could Ruin Her.

Erin Potter has a pre-existing condition—because she's not dead. The Affordable Care Act helped her beat leukemia. The GOP just voted to gut her future.<p><i>Editor's Note: This story has been updated with the passage of the American Health Care Act in the House.</i><p>CLEVELAND — Erin Potter doesn’t remember …

A vending machine at the UC Davis campus dispenses Plan B pills

<b>(CNN) —</b> Students at UC Davis can now press A4 for Plan B.<p>A new vending machine in a University of California Davis study room traded the usual Hot Cheetos and Red Bull for condoms, tampons, pregnancy tests, Advil, and the morning after pill (or Plan B). They call it the "Wellness To Go" …

UC Davis

“Abortion is never mentioned” in the Bible—a Christian ob-gyn on why choice is pro-life

To those working in reproductive rights in the US, doctor Willie Parker is a hero. “A colored boy from Birmingham,” Alabama, as his 1962, pre-Civil Rights Act birth certificate described him, Parker grew up in abject poverty, fourth of six children, raised by a fierce single mother. Against all of …

Rights & Freedoms

The Likely Cause of Addiction Has Been Discovered, and It Is Not What You Think

It is now one hundred years since drugs were first banned -- and all through this long century of waging war on drugs, we have been told a story about addiction by our teachers and by our governments. This story is so deeply ingrained in our minds that we take it for granted. It seems obvious. It …

Addiction

G.O.P. Bill Would Make Medical Malpractice Suits Harder to Win

WASHINGTON — Low-income people and older Americans would find it more difficult to win lawsuits for injuries caused by medical malpractice or defective drugs or medical devices under a bill drafted by House Republicans as part of their plan to replace the Affordable Care Act.<p>The bill would impose …

Primary care teams as catalysts for innovative care: New white paper

As the first point of contact for many patients, primary care providers have a unique opportunity to impact patient health and health care spending.<p>A …

Health Care

New Prescription Drugs: A Major Health Risk With Few Offsetting Advantages

by Donald W. Light Few people know that new prescription drugs have a 1 in 5 chance of causing serious reactions after they have been approved. That …

Health

In Deep Red America, The Rise of the Abortion Doula

Reproductive Health<p>In Deep Red America, The Rise of the Abortion Doula<p>“Just as a laboring patient needs emotional and physical support in the …

Rights & Freedoms

F.D.A. Approves First Drug to Treat Severe Multiple Sclerosis

The Food and Drug Administration approved on Tuesday the first drug to treat a severe form of multiple sclerosis, offering hope to patients who previously had no other options to combat a relentless disease that leads to paralysis and cognitive decline.<p>The federal agency also cleared the drug to …

Late G.O.P. Proposal Could Mean Plans That Cover Aromatherapy but Not Chemotherapy

Most Republicans in Congress prefer the type of health insurance market in which everyone could “choose the plan that’s right for them.”<p>Why should a 60-year-old man have to buy a plan that includes maternity benefits he’ll never use? (This is an example that comes up a lot.) In contrast, the …