Ohio is attempting to introduce legislation that would require abortion clinics to incinerate or bury products of conception from abortion. This legislation is already in place in Arkansas and Indiana. These laws are supposed to afford human tissue a “respectful and proper” end as lawmakers were apparently horrified that products of conception were disposed of as medical waste. Medical waste is not an offensive term. When ...

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Most physicians will be thrust into the role of patient or caregiver at some point during their careers. Unfortunately, it’s not until this occurs that many become fully aware of the finer points of excellent care and communication. Take, for example, the simple act of reporting test results to a patient. We do this every day, but may not realize that how we frame the information is as important as ...

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I am a licensed clinical social worker. And, occasionally, a mental patient. Today, in this inpatient psychiatric unit, I am more a patient than a social worker. It is Monday morning, and I am eating breakfast across from Owen, a muscular, flannel-clad, Paul Bunyan-looking patient. Little pieces of his scrambled eggs keep landing on his copper-colored beard. I sort of want to motion with my hand at where the eggs are ...

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We, as a society, can’t ignore these numbers: over 47,000 human lives lost prematurely in one year from drug overdoses, a 7 percent spike over the previous year, with opioid painkillers and heroin driving much of this tragic surge. If this trend isn’t disturbing enough, four out of five new heroin abusers began their habit by abusing painkillers. These numbers have faces. Caring for patients who abuse and overdose ...

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Test your medicine knowledge with the MKSAP challenge, in partnership with the American College of Physicians. A 59-year-old woman is evaluated for continued substernal chest pain. She presented with exertional chest pain 6 months ago that occurred with minimal ambulation. She was evaluated with a stress nuclear medicine myocardial perfusion study that showed no ST-segment changes but a small area of inducible ischemia in the lateral area of ...

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On any given night in the United States, according to the Department of Housing and Urban Development, over half a million people are without a home. That number may have decreased nationwide in the past few years, but California remains on the forefront of the problem, accounting for 20 percent of the country’s homeless in 2014. With the winter’s freezing temperatures and El Niño’s massive rainstorms, what to do about the ...

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It’s January 2016. News stories have inspired significant anxiety about Zika virus. It’s a scary topic because news about the outbreaks are just unfolding, and this affects an already anxious group: pregnant mamas and expecting families. I want to share with you real-time information and data to try to alleviate anxiety and educate the best I can. I suspect with time some of this will change. I’ve curated the most common questions and answers ...

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There is no doubt that Zika is causing worldwide hysteria as a rapidly spreading virus with potential of pandemic proportions. The virus is transmitted by the Aedes aegypti mosquito, which also carries both dengue fever and yellow fever. While a relatively innocuous virus with 80 percent of those affected being asymptomatic, mild symptoms of illness such as fever, rash, joint pain, and conjunctivitis are associated. The most worrisome outcome of this ...

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When my twin sons were born prematurely at 26 weeks’ gestation, my family’s lives were thrust into the whirlwind of the NICU and living daily with the reality of the babies (William and Elliott) being on life support. Having had no prior intense and prolonged experiences with the hospital, and watching helplessly and fretfully as my tiny two-pounders fought for their lives, it’s almost impossible to put into language what ...

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A patient came to the office and refused to see me, although I was quite willing to see him. I’ll present the scenario followed by the patient’s reason he took an abrupt U-turn. Then, if you are inclined, you may offer your own advice and comment. I performed a colonoscopy on this patient and found a large polyp in the upper part of the large intestine, or colon. The upper part ...

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