Health and Medical News and Resources

General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

How to Talk to Your Doctor

The National Institutes of Health Senior Health site has new information on how to talk to your doctor.

It includes information on planning an office visit, how to get the most out of an office visit, and conversations after diagnosis.

Includes links to related videos.

Not for seniors only!

Related Resources

illustration of an older man talking to his doctor

  • Talking to Your Doctor links you to NIH resources that can help you make the most of your conversations with your doctor.
    Communication is key to good health care.
    Get tips for asking questions and talking openly about your symptoms and concerns.

Includes general guides as well specific advice in these areas: cancer, eye health, diabetes, hearing, heart health, kidney
disease, urologic conditions, weight loss, complementary and alternative medicine, and  aging

June 25, 2010 Posted by | Consumer Health | , , , , , | Leave a comment

“Jumping genes” make each person unique: study

“Transposons are sequences in the DNA code that can replicate themselves. They “jump” from one place to another on the chromosomes. Devine’s team found unique transposons in more than 90 percent of the 76 people they studied, they reported in the journal Cell.

These mutations can affect the functions of other genes. Stretches of DNA right in front of or behind a gene can turn it on, turn it off, or affect the way it functions.

That people have transposons is not new. “Forty-five percent of the genome is known to be transposon sequences,” Devine said. But most hopped in and are now inactive, passing down unchanged and in place from one generation to the next.

“What we are interested in are the ones that are moving around today. We found an average of 15 new insertions per person,” Devine said in a telephone interview.”

News item may be found here.

June 25, 2010 Posted by | Consumer Health, Health News Items | , | Leave a comment

Scientists Suggest Links Between Personality, Size of Brain Regions

The news item may be found here

Some highlights

  • Four out of the five principle personality “factors” as typically characterized by psychologists — conscientiousness, extraversion, neuroticism, agreeableness and openness/intellect — were associated with differences in regional brain mass
  • Participants who described themselves as extroverted had a significantly larger medial orbitofrontol cortex — a part of the brain active in considering rewards. Perhaps not surprisingly, those self-described as conscientious had a bigger lateral prefrontal cortex
  • Personality is not an immutable force, given that the brain grows and changes in reaction to experience
  • Openness and intellect didn’t correspond to any particular brain structure

June 25, 2010 Posted by | Health News Items | | Leave a comment

CDC Responds to the Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill


The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services are currently monitoring potential health threats or conditions across the five Gulf States that may arise as a result of human exposure to the oil spill. Current focus is on surveillance, worker safety, and data analysis.

A summary of this update may be found here

 The CDC Web Page , 2010 Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill includes the following links:


Contact information for the CDC is also provided.

On a related note…..

June 25, 2010 Posted by | Consumer Health, Health News Items | | Leave a comment


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