• Show 1154: How to Take Good Care of Your Eyesight

    A national survey just a few years ago showed that Americans fear losing their vision more than they fear losing a limb, their hearing, their ability to speak or even their memory (Scott et al, JAMA Ophthalmology, October 2016). What do you know about how to take good care of your eyesight? What Can You […]

  • Can NSAIDs for Pain Harm Your Kidneys?

    Have you taken nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like diclofenac, ibuprofen or naproxen? A recent study shows that people taking high doses of NSAIDs for pain may develop kidney problems (Nelson et al, JAMA Network Open, Feb. 15, 2019). Studying NSAIDs for Pain Relief: Previous studies have shown that using NSAIDs for pain can increase biomarkers of […]

  • More Bad News About PPIs and Kidney Damage

    The FDA loves proton pump inhibitors (PPI)s. So do doctors, especially gastroenterologists. Drugs like esomeprazole (Nexium) lansoprazole (Prevacid) and omeprazole (Prilosec) used to top the doctors’ hit parade of most prescribed drugs. Then the FDA decided that these powerful acid-suppressing medications were so wonderful and so safe they should be made available without a prescription. […]

  • Should You Worry About Zombie Deer?

    There is growing concern about a mysterious infectious disease that has been spreading among the wild deer population for decades. Scientists call it CWD or chronic wasting disease. Hunters refer to this condition as zombie deer disease. It can also affect elk and moose. Where Are the Zombie Deer? The CDC reports that this infectious […]

  • How Risky Is Shoulder Replacement Surgery?

    Shoulder replacement surgery is becoming increasingly common. Now, researchers writing in The BMJ say that patients should be warned that the risks of this procedure are higher than doctors originally thought. Risks of Shoulder Replacement Surgery: The investigators reviewed hospital records relevant to 58,000 operations in the UK (Craig et al, The BMJ, Feb. 20, […]

  • Improving Patient Safety by Reducing Alert Fatigue

    Drug interactions are a serious hazard in hospitals and in the community. If patients receive prescriptions for incompatible medications, they can experience severe side effects that may even be life threatening. Electronic medical records are intended to warn prescribers and pharmacists about potentially dangerous interactions, but many do so indiscriminately. The result is something called […]

  • Statins and Muscle Pain: What Else Can He Do To Lower LDL?

    Jane Brody, the grande dame of medical journalism, asked: “Are you among the 73 million Americans with cholesterol levels that current guidelines suggest should be lowered by taking a statin for the sake of your cardiovascular well-being?” (New York Times, April 16, 2018). Ms. Brody goes on to downplay the side effects of statins. But […]

  • Can You Avoid Post-Operative Cognitive Dysfunction?

    When you are told you need surgery, there is a lot to think about. What kind of surgery, and what is the recovery like? Will you need to spend time in the hospital? You need to know the risks and benefits of the procedure to make a decision. However, many people don’t consider the anesthesia. […]

  • Is Vanilla a Helpful Remedy for Cold Sores?

    Do you sometimes suffer from cold sores? If you do, you may have developed your own favorite collection of remedies. Some people like to use medications at the first sensation of tingling, while others prefer natural products such as vanilla extract. Can Vanilla Extract Speed Healing? Q. With regard to treating cold sores, I use […]

  • Why Is Your Prescription Drug Label A Disaster?

    Do you remember the book, Catch-22, by Joseph Heller? Airmen in World War II were faced with a no-win situation. To be exempted from a suicidal bombing mission you had to plead insanity. But if you asked to be grounded, there was “catch-22.” The doctor (Doc Daneeka) explained that, “Anyone who wants to get out […]