The numbers are scary: The average woman has a 12 percent risk of developing breast cancer at some point in her life. For women with certain genetic mutations or risk factors, lifetime risk can climb to 85 percent. Even more terrifying than the numbers, however, are the rumors; rumors that the contrast dye used in MRIs for breast cancer screenings is harmful; rumors that are driving women away from an adjunctive ...

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The boy is three years old and quite curious about the world. He watches his father leave the house and wants to go find him. He looks to his mother but she is napping beside him on the couch, and he would rather not wake her, so he grabs his stuffed dog, Dory, and walks to the door. The door is unlocked, and he heads out of the apartment, wandering ...

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Stress! It is a fact of life for all human beings. Stress is a normal reaction — psychologic and physiologic — to the everyday demands of life. When your brain perceives a threat, the body reacts with a fight-or-flight response, releasing hormones, increasing heart rate, and blood pressure. When the situation is over, your body returns to a normal, calm state. But sometimes, in our overly-stimulated world, the stress response button ...

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There is a condition known as cyclic vomiting syndrome which causes people to develop episodes or “attacks” of frequent vomiting lasting for a few days at a time without an apparent cause. Sufferers of cyclic vomiting are totally fine between episodes … it’s kind of like a migraine of the upper gastrointestinal tract! Just like treating migraine headaches, treatment of cyclic vomiting syndrome is aimed at identifying and removing triggers, and using ...

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Spot the word "first" in a headline, and you might assume a major milestone has been reached. Think first person on the moon, first woman on the Supreme Court. But in health care news, things heralded for being first might not amount to a clear advance for patients. Take two recent FDA announcements that made a splash despite weak evidence that they really help people. In March the FDA announced its approval of a “first treatment ...

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I was asked to present information about mental health to a lay audience. This is both an exciting and daunting task. I imagine it’s like asking someone to talk about fish. There are so many kinds of fish! They live in many habitats! Some of them look more like snakes than fish! There are so many directions to go. I have given a “psychiatry 101” talk to many non-clinical audiences in ...

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If you’re sexy, fit and nimble, if you can part your thighs and bend your knees, if you can see your private parts without a mirror, ignore this. Move on. This is not for you. This is for those with flailing sex-drive and failing abilities whose sex life is a challenge, but they’d like to make their partners happy and have some fun. Maybe your parents or grandparents. This must be an ...

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As my patients aged along with me, I noticed both the expected increased numbers of people with some form of dementia and even more patients who were worried about this topic. Unless you have been away on a ten-year safari, you are very aware that dementia is a growing problem. Some 5.8 million Americans are living with Alzheimer's disease, and similar numbers occur in most western countries. The incidence goes ...

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Test your medicine knowledge with the MKSAP challenge, in partnership with the American College of Physicians. A 44-year-old man is evaluated in the office during a routine visit. Medical history is significant for HIV diagnosed at age 25 years, hypertension, and hyperlipidemia. He is a current smoker. Medications are chlorthalidone, tenofovir-emtricitabine, and raltegravir. On physical examination, the patient is afebrile, and blood pressure is 126/74 mm ...

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As women in medicine, we are always focused on the next goal we need to achieve to advance our career. Though undergraduate education, medical school, residency, and fellowship, we are constantly striving to get the highest score, to maintain a high GPA, to publish papers, to get excellent letters of recommendation. The challenge that women physicians face is balancing these demands in the midst of our passing prime reproductive years. ...

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