My brother wears a scar around his neck. It represents his second surgery for papillary thyroid cancer. The first started off the same way. Ugly, red and angry. Curving like an ominous smile around his neck, like a noose. That’s how it felt too -- the lump in his throat growing as he sat quietly, alone in a doctor’s office. It’s interesting how physical scars are a visual manifestation of ...

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Test your medicine knowledge with the MKSAP challenge, in partnership with the American College of Physicians. A 66-year-old man is evaluated for vague abdominal pain of several months' duration and a 10-kg (22-lb) weight loss. He drinks alcohol socially but does not smoke. The patient is otherwise well, has good performance status, and takes no medications. On physical examination, vital signs are normal. No lymphadenopathy is noted. Cardiopulmonary examination ...

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Water births, delivering a baby so it is born underwater, are controversial medically because while they are promoted as safe and natural by some midwives and lay midwives they are not recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Congress of OB/GYN. (Laboring in a tub in an entirely different thing.) The January 2015 issue of Emerging Infectious Diseases is reporting the death of a newborn from to Legionella acquired during a water ...

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shutterstock_145891655 Have you ever eaten a healthy meal, maybe some brown rice and stir-fried veggies, and found yourself ready for another meal just a short while later? Or, more often couldn’t overcome a hankering for a satisfying dessert to top off (and undermine the healthiness of) that meal? As it turns out, this lack of satiety is not merely a function of the ...

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It was last summer in July when I became sick. It was a range of not unusual upper respiratory symptoms, but as time progressed and my symptoms didn’t respond to the usual combination of steroids and antibiotics, I became concerned. I’d developed a more distinct pain in my chest and became increasingly mindful about those bad things we see from time to time. It was late after a shift in the ...

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shutterstock_108354956 This year, we celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary. So, last week, one evening, I told my wife about a news story I heard on National Public Radio (NPR) about the microbiology of a kiss. My wife smiled. A group of researchers, I said, looked at the oral bacterial flora of 21 couples to determine how many bacteria were transferred by a kiss. ...

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shutterstock_115992457 Look here: I am a breastfeeding supporter. I regularly help new moms breastfeed successfully, and I even took a special class to learn how to do a brief procedure to help babies overcome breastfeeding problems caused by tongue-tie. I’ve got a happy breast support sticker, right on my AAP card. But I think honesty is (or should be) the breast policy. Some ...

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Since Ebola was first discovered in 1976, there have been an estimated 16 to 22 recorded outbreaks. In August, the World Health Organization designated the most recent outbreak a global emergency. Ebola is a deadly infection and the scope of the current epidemic in West Africa is unprecedented. More than 17,000 people have contracted Ebola virus disease (EVD) with more than 6,000 estimated deaths. Many in the health care field have criticized the response ...

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Test your medicine knowledge with the MKSAP challenge, in partnership with the American College of Physicians.

A 32-year-old woman is evaluated as a new patient. She is planning to attempt conception with her partner. She has a history of systemic lupus erythematosus complicated by chronic kidney disease that has been inactive for several years off of treatment. She has had borderline blood pressure elevations since the ...

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So many foods beckoning us from the grocery store shelves -- but which ones are healthy for us to consume? We could study nutritional facts labels, but that feels as challenging as the math portion of the SAT, with so much numerical information to process. The label tells us how many calories are in the food in question -- how many grams of protein, how many grams of fat, and ...

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