Sunday, March 29, 2015

Take a hike for your heart

Wednesday, April 1, is National Walking Day and the American Heart Association is encouraging Americans and Sacramento residents to lace up for their heart and get moving. On National Walking Day, a day where hundreds of thousands across the nation take steps to improve their health, Americans are encouraged to spend at least 30 minutes […]

Extra oxygen may spur tumor-fighting cells

A provocative study in mice suggests something as simple as breathing in extra oxygen might give immune cells a boost in attacking cancer. The immune system often can spot and destroy abnormal cells before they grow into cancer. But when tumors manage to take root, they put up defenses to block new immune attacks. Wednesday’s […]

Breastfeeding: Is breast best?

By Michael Vovakes, MD Breastfeeding your baby is a personal matter. But it also is an issue which often draws strong opinions from friends and family. Any new mother probably knows this to be true. Many medical experts strongly recommend breastfeeding. But you and your baby are unique so the final decision is up to […]

Call for study to settle if anesthesia poses risk to babies

By Lauran Neergaard, AP medical writer Studies of baby animals have long suggested that going under anesthesia can have some harmful effects on a developing brain. Now some scientists want to find out whether those same drugs may pose subtle risks for human babies and toddlers. It’s a balancing act: Doctors don’t want to unnecessarily […]

Eye-opener: Teens getting less and less sleep, study shows

CHICAGO (AP) — U.S. teens are getting sleepier: Many lack even seven hours of shut-eye each night and the problem has worsened over two decades, a study found. More than half of kids aged 15 and older would need to sleep at least two hours more each night to meet recommendations for adequate rest, heightening […]

Is drinking alcohol healthy?

By Jim Cotter, M.D., MPH In my last column, I talked about how to know if a person may have a problem with drinking. I want to carry on this discussion of alcohol by talking about its potential benefits. Many people have heard that drinking a glass of red wine each day is good for […]

Measles: What’s the worry?

NEW YORK (AP) — Measles has become relatively rare in the United States, thanks to very effective vaccine. A recent outbreak tied to Disneyland has shown that even among some doctors, knowledge of the once-common illness is spotty. Some questions and answers about a still-dangerous disease that’s re-emerged as a leading public health concern: Q: […]

How much drinking is too much?

By Jim Cotter, MD, MPH On the first Monday of each month, my local newspaper publishes a list of local DUI convictions for the previous month (which of course, I scan carefully for people I may know). Along with the list is a guideline for avoiding a DUI: “if you weigh 150-169 pounds, three drinks […]

Caring for the aging mouth

The perception of aging of the whole body has changed dramatically in all aspects of health, function and aesthetics, including those of the mouth. Tooth loss is no longer considered inevitable. Even when tooth loss happens, age does not limit modern science from offering replacement options that mimic natural teeth. As our bodies age, they become […]

Environment trumps genetics in shaping immune system

WASHINGTON (AP) — How your immune system does its job seems to depend more on your environment and the germs you encounter than on your genes, says new research that put twins to the test to find out. After all, the immune system adapts throughout life to fight disease, said Stanford University immunologist Mark Davis, […]

New Year’s resolution: No more spiral fractures

By Jeff Ribordy, MD Ah, the holiday season. It is the time of year children eagerly tear open their boxes of new toys and with it, the expected casts, splints, and crutches. Wait, what? Yes, Virginia, according to those Grinches at a medical journal called Clinical Pediatrics, emergency department visits due to toy injuries have […]

It was a busy, black-eye year for disease control

NEW YORK (AP) — Health officials are celebrating some important victories in 2014, and Time magazine even named Ebola fighters the persons of the year. Nevertheless, this was a black-eye year for public health. Some vital vaccines did not work well. Federal laboratories were careless with dangerous pathogens. And international health officials failed to stop […]

E-cigs surpass regular cigarettes among teens

WASHINGTON (AP) — Electronic cigarettes have surpassed traditional smoking in popularity among teens, the government’s annual drug use survey finds. Even as tobacco smoking by teens dropped to new lows, use of e-cigarettes reached levels that surprised researchers. The findings marked the survey’s first attempt to measure the use of e-cigarettes by people that young. […]