Health + Medicine – Articles, Analysis, Opinion

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Close to 9 million children could be affected if funding for health insurance for them expires. Billion Photos/www.shutterstock.com

Clock running out on health program for 9 million kids

Funding for the children's health insurance program is in jeopardy if Congress does not act by September 30. Here's a look at what's at stake, and how Congress could act to secure funding for CHIP.
From left, Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev., Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-La., Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., and Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., hold a press conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Sept. 13, 2017. AP Photo/Andrew Harnik

How the latest effort to repeal Obamacare would affect millions

A Senate vote in July seemed to signal the end of efforts to kill the Affordable Care Act. With a Sept. 30 deadline looming, though, a new bill has real possibilities. Here's why that could be bad.
Kaylee Wedderburn-Pugh, a SPURS student, working to help find answers to Huntington’s disease. Author provided.

How affirmative action could cure cancer and heart disease

Affirmative action programs at universities are under threat by the Trump administration. That could be especially damaging to medical education. Who knows who holds the idea for the next great cure?
Aedes Aegypti mosquitoes viewed through a microscope in Broward County, Florida, in June 2016. AP Photo/Lynne Sladky

Harvey and Irma present nearly perfect conditions for Zika-spreading mosquitoes

Vast amounts of standing water in Houston and other hurricane-flooded areas are dangerous not only because of toxins. The water is a dangerous breeding ground for mosquitoes that transmit Zika.
Damage from Irma can be seen in this photo of Kelly McClenthen in Bonita Springs, Florida, as she returned to her home Sept. 11, 2017. AP Photo/Gerald Herbert

What do hospitals do in a hurricane? Use their own emergency plans

Even in areas predicted to take direct hits from hurricanes and other storms, hospitals must do all they can to stay open. It isn't an easy task, but preparation and practice help.
A woman with symptoms of cholera walks into a cholera treatment center at Immaculate Conception Hospital in Les Cayes, Haiti in November 2016 in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew. Reuters/Andres Martinez Casares

Cholera fears rise following Atlantic hurricanes: Are we making any progress?

Surviving a hurricane in poor countries such as Haiti is no guarantee of surviving the secondary problem of cholera.
Parkinson’s disease responds well to a range of treatments, but more specialists are needed to know how to best tailor treatment for patients. adriancfoto/Shutterstock.com

Parkinson’s disease: New drugs and treatments, but where are the doctors?

Research has yielded new insights into Parkinson's disease, and treatments are expanding. But a shortage of doctors trained in the disease leaves a gap in care.
While this football player’s arms may look like they give him an onfield advantage, his fingers may actually be more predictive of his athletic ability. Ostill/Shutterstock.com

Finger size does matter… in sports

Athletic ability is often linked to size – of muscles and bones. New studies are suggesting, however, that the relative size of two fingers could be more predictive of ability.
Several studies have shown that health suffers after being laid off, as fear and anxiety lead to stress. VGstockstudio/Shutterstock.com

How can job loss be bad for health, and recession be good for it?

The negative effects of job loss have been well-documented and fairly well-understood. But why would studies also suggest that health improves during a recession? The reasons may surprise you.
As many people have had to wade through floodwaters, they need to be aware of the risk of infection and disease from contaminated waters. AP Photo/David J. Phillip

Flooding from Hurricane Harvey causes a host of public health concerns

As Houston continues to rescue residents whose homes were ruined, it also begins to deal with issues related to contaminated floodwaters and overflowing reservoirs. It won't be easy.
The smell of daffodils is a treat for most people, but some cannot experience the joy because they have lost their sense of smell. Mila Supinskaya Glashchenko/Shutterstock.com

Can you pass this smell test?

Our senses of taste and smell are linked to one another in ways that experts are continuing to explore. See if you can answer some questions for which experts have discovered some surprising answers.
Signs from a protest in 2015 against a California bill that prohibits parents from using a religious exemption as a reason to not vaccinate their children. The bill became law. AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli

Anti-vaccination beliefs don’t follow the usual political polarization

Opposition to vaccines still prevents many children from getting needed preventative care. Understanding who is opposed, and why, can help, but the answers may surprise you.
A recent study of medical students and residents found they were reluctant to engage with parents who have vaccination fears. But listening to parents is important. Olena Yakobchuck/Shutterstock.com

The best shot at overcoming vaccination standoffs? Having doctors listen to – not shun – reluctant parents

A recent study suggests that shunning parents who are reluctant to vaccinate their kids isn't the best strategy. A better strategy might be old-fashioned, but it works.
Hearing can be affected by loud noises, but the mechanisms have not been fully understood. The auditory nerve plays a big role. 9nang/Shutterstock.com

Some nerves: How loud noise may change hearing

Noise is common, but we don't fully know what that means for our hearing. A recent study suggests how overstimulation of the auditory nerve may be too much for it to handle.