Most people who have kidney disease are not aware of it. In fact, nearly half of people with severe kidney disease don’t know it. Kidney disease is often silent, and one of its main risk factors, high blood pressure, is silent as well. The head of the NIH’s kidney research organization discusses this major public health issue and what people should look for to receive early intervention.
The effectiveness of efforts to contain coronavirus often depend on governmental policies determined years or even decades ago that, at the time, had nothing to do with public health. A health policy expert discusses some of these policies and what they mean for coronavirus testing and treatment.
The Institute of Medicine report “To Err Is Human” in 1999 shook health care with the finding that as many as 120,000 Americans die each year due to medical mistakes. A noted researcher re-examines how far we’ve come since then and the difficult cooperation it will take to make patient safety more certain.
Studies show that by this time of year, most of us have failed new year’s resolutions to lose weight. A noted expert discusses how most people get in trouble with obesity and a more reasonable way to try to lose weight than most people follow.
Polycystic ovary syndrome affects about 10% of American women, but has such a wide variety of troubling symptoms that it’s often misdiagnosed. Experts discuss the disorder and what women should know.
Public policy is built on the food desert theory: the lack of neighborhood supermarkets drives people to eat less fresh food and more junk food. New research is challenging that theory, but finding values of grocery stores in other, unexpected places. Experts discuss how nearby supermarkets change people and the neighborhoods where they live.
More than 100 million Americans have high cholesterol, a major risk factor for heart disease. Most people think of their diets as the main cause, but genetics also play a role in both good and bad ways. A noted expert discusses how scientists are harnessing cholesterol genes to lower the risk of heart attacks.
Untold millions of people are afraid of needles. Most manage by looking the other way when they’re facing an injection, but many may avoid the doctor as a result of their fear. The problem is increasingly dangerous for the rising number of people with diabetes, who must inject themselves with insulin to survive. A needle-phobic woman and doctor who’s squeamish himself discuss.
Nearly a quarter of us owe past due medical debt, and hospitals are moving more aggressively to collect. The rise is the result of a tradeoff--Americans have avoided higher health insurance premiums only to be jeopardized by extremely high deductibles and out-of-network costs. Experts explain what unpaid medical debt can mean, how patients can escape its clutches, and how one charity works to buy and forgive debt.
Doctors are realizing that concussions can smolder in the brain for years with symptoms that are missed, making diagnosis at the time of occurrence all the more important. Yet a new study shows that protocols affecting the most vulnerable—young athletes—often are not followed. Experts explain why, and what people should do when they receive any blow to the head.
When a person suffers a severe emotional shock, they may suffer what looks like a heart attack but is actually what doctors call “stress cardiomyopathy.” Most patients recover but the condition can be fatal, confirming that it is possible to die of a broken heart. An expert explains.
Experts believe about 40 percent of the food available in America is thrown away. Solving this environmental problem also creates an opportunity to help with food insecurity. It starts with consumers. Experts explain where waste comes from and how people can cut down on its production.
Doctors have learned that childhood allergies and asthma may have their start in dry, dysfunctional skin in infancy, when allergens such as food particles enter the body through cracks in the skin. A noted pediatric allergist discusses this ”atopic march” and ways to combat it.
As much as 16 percent of the population suffers from Trypophobia, which makes them uneasy at the sight of holes clustered together, as in a honeycomb. Two experts and a sufferer discuss this phobia, which can be remarkably debilitating.
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.