January 25, 2013 More than half of norovirus outbreaks reported during the last four months of 2012 in the U.S. were caused by a strain first identified in Australia. Restaurants and long-term care facilities have been hit hardest.
January 24, 2013 KHNPatients with the blood disorder can experience severe pain. But when they arrive at the emergency room seeking help, health care personnel often think their requests for narcotics are a sign of addiction. Nursing professor Paula Tanabe is helping to illuminate the problem and improve treatment.
January 23, 2013 A study of a new drug therapy for pancreatic cancer finds it works better than the standard approach. While the improvement is modest for the typical patient, some people who received the treatment lived a year or two longer than those receiving conventional therapy.
January 23, 2013 Prescription drugs like Vicodin have provided much-needed relief for many people suffering from pain. But these painkillers can be addictive, and they kill thousands each year. Doctors and regulators are looking into how to limit access to the drugs without causing more suffering for pain patients.
January 22, 2013 Abortion foes say the U.S. Supreme Court's aggressive decision set the issue on the path toward becoming intractable. Others say factors besides the landmark case — including doctors, lawyers, President Nixon and the Catholic Church — more strongly influenced the state of today's debate.
January 18, 2013 The Food and Drug Administration just approved a flu vaccine made by cells taken from the fall armyworm, an agricultural pest. The cells produce copies of a piece of the flu virus's outer coat that primes the immune system. Conventional vaccines use the whole virus and take longer to produce.
January 17, 2013 Flu viruses hijack the machinery inside animal cells to replicate. The theft is a complicated process that takes time. If the virus leaves the cells too early or too late, the risk of infection falls.
January 17, 2013 A 2008 federal law is supposed to protect people from having their genes used against them. But it only applies to health insurance — not, for example, long-term-care insurance. That's exactly the type of insurance people might seek after learning they're genetically predisposed to some medical problem down the road.
January 17, 2013 A New York law that requires mental health professionals to report potentially violent patients probably won't accomplish much, specialists say. Studies show that even highly trained professionals are often wrong about which patients become violent.
January 16, 2013 Smartphone apps that assess moles for skin cancer risk missed threatening moles one-third of the time, say dermatologists who tested some of the apps. The apps could give people a false sense of security about their skin.
January 16, 2013 Parents will be reassured to hear there's no evidence linking the current timeline for vaccinations to health problems. A review of all available scientific data looked at a wide range of medical conditions — including diabetes, autism and epilepsy — before declaring that there's no reason to worry.
January 16, 2013 Canadian scientists have developed a synthetic stool that successfully treated two patients with a severe form of diarrhea. The researchers call the concoction RePOOPulate, and they produce it using a machine that recreates conditions in the colon.
January 15, 2013 The boards that license and discipline doctors are watching what they post online. Guaranteed cancer cures and photos of drunken debauchery are definite no-nos. A picture of a doctor holding a drink at an office party might raise an eyebrow but probably wouldn't trigger an investigation.