Health Advice



A word about wine

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

If you enjoy a glass of merlot, pinot noir or shiraz, you may be pleased to hear that red wine contains compounds that may also be beneficial to your health.

While red wine has been considered a celebratory and wholesome part of traditional diets in much of Europe for thousands of years, it wasn’t until research identifying the “French ...Read more

Mayo Clinic Q&A: Skin condition melasma can be challenging to get rid of completely

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

DEAR MAYO CLINIC: Years ago, I had some patches of melasma on my face removed with IPL treatment. When I went to make an appointment with my dermatologist recently for the same condition, I was told IPL should not be used for melasma. Why is this? What treatment should be used?

ANSWER: The skin condition melasma can be challenging to get rid of...Read more

Mid-year changes to your health plan, FSA or HSA

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

You probably never heard of COVID-19 when you picked this year’s health insurance policy at work. You couldn’t have planned for the coronavirus pandemic when you signed up for a 2020 flexible spending arrangement (FSA), either. But you might not be stuck with the choices you made in 2019 with respect to employer-provided health insurance and...Read more

A guide to making sense of coronavirus studies

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

Here at The Inquirer's Health & Science desk, we often are asked how we decide what to write about. My answer always includes this statement:

A huge part of the job is deciding what not to write about.

That is true even for the coronavirus, a topic for which people seem to have an insatiable appetite, no matter how small the development. We ...Read more

Coronavirus surprise: IRS allows midyear insurance and FSA changes

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

The economic upheaval and social disruption caused by the coronavirus pandemic have upended the assumptions many people made last fall about which insurance plan to sign up for, or how much of their pretax wages to sock away in health or dependent care flexible spending accounts.

You may find yourself in a high-priced health plan you can no ...Read more

Remote devices for telehealth see surge in demand

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

Smartphone apps and connected devices that largely have seen niche use in the telemedicine context are likely to see a significant growth as online and remote consultations with doctors during the COVID-19 pandemic become more routine and established in the months to come.

The devices and apps range from ones that are worn like a skin patch and...Read more

Workplace infection rule could backfire, Labor Department says

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

Forcing the Labor Department to adopt an emergency temporary standard to protect workers against COVID-19 infections could result in an "ineffective or counterproductive" regulation that would be difficult to modify if necessary, the department said in court documents.

And ordering the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to issue such...Read more

Unemployment, isolation and depression from COVID-19 may cause more 'deaths of despair'

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

PHILADELPHIA -- Even before protesters across the country took to the streets in rage and grief over police brutality, Americans were already facing unprecedented stress, isolation, depression and fear brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Earlier this month, as the country began to consider relaxing stay-at-home orders and reopening businesses,...Read more

Coronavirus pandemic is fueling efforts to increase access to abortion pills

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

PHILADELPHIA -- The pandemic is helping U.S. abortion-rights advocates achieve a long-standing goal: Make it easier for women to use pills to end pregnancies up to 10 weeks.

Federal and state regulations have restricted access to "medication abortion" ever since the Food and Drug Administration approved it two decades ago. Nonetheless, use of ...Read more

UnitedHealth to donate $10M to George Floyd family, rebuilding causes

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

UnitedHealth Group said it will pay for the college education of George Floyd's children and donate more than $10 million to help Twin Cities neighborhoods hurt by the riots of the last week.

After Floyd died while in Minneapolis police custody, an offshoot of peaceful protests turned violent, resulting in days of looting and destruction in ...Read more

Cancer summit presses toward treatments in shadow of COVID-19

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

The year's biggest meeting of cancer researchers was subjected to a coronavirus overhaul this year, but even in scaled-back form it forced investors to recalibrate their expectations for some closely watched medicines.

The American Society of Clinical Oncology meeting is the field's most important gathering each spring, providing a stage for ...Read more

'It matters': Nurse asks to work 60-hour weeks to help COVID-19 patients

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The middle-aged man lay dying of COVID-19 in the intensive care unit, only moments from his last, shallow breath. The ventilator was removed. His brain had already been hit by blood clots caused by the coronavirus during respiratory failure.

Sarah Kiehl stood at his bedside, her face and head beneath a plastic hood, her ...Read more

Coronavirus grief: Coping with the loss of routine during the pandemic

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

It isn't easy adjusting to changes brought on by the pandemic. Consider how to deal with grief caused by the loss of your normal routine.

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has changed people's lives in many ways. In addition to feeling grief over the loss of life caused by COVID-19, you're likely grieving the loss of your normal ...Read more

COVID-19 clouds early health insurance premium requests

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

WASHINGTON -- Health insurance premium requests are beginning to trickle in from states with early filing deadlines, but the potential effects from the coronavirus pandemic are still largely speculative.

Some health insurers in early deadline states such as Vermont, Oregon and the District of Columbia are attributing portions of their proposed ...Read more

Mayo Clinic Minute: Why tobacco users should call it quits

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

Tobacco users have an increased risk of becoming very sick if they contract the virus that causes COVID-19. If you use tobacco and want to stop, consider World No Tobacco Day on Sunday, May 31 as a start date.

"During this time when the COVID-19 pandemic has made maintaining the health of ourselves and our families top of mind, is the best time...Read more

Advocates for domestic violence victims discuss COVID-19 challenges, ways to support victims

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

SAN DIEGO -- Advocates and experts on domestic violence likely saw this coming: the response to keep people safe from COVID-19 would result in greater harm for victims of domestic violence. All of that time isolated and at home alone with an abusive partner has meant that the severity of the abuse can increase.

According to Futures Without ...Read more

Study: Even with private insurance, black overdose patients are half as likely as whites to get addiction treatment

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

Opioid overdose patients with private insurance are rarely connected to addiction treatment after visiting the emergency department, a new national study from the University of Pennsylvania has found.

And the problem is particularly severe among black and Hispanic patients, more evidence of deep racial disparities in health care generally and ...Read more

A survivor of 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' and cancer, she just became a major — on her porch

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- This was to be a celebratory spring for Alison Cruise.

The UNC Charlotte alumna learned last summer that the U.S. Air Force would promote her to major this May, and she was excited by the prospect of her 3-year-old daughter Shiloh pinning the new rank insignia on her uniform in a formal military ceremony full of pomp and ...Read more

Study shows brain and stomach connections are a 2-way street

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

PITTSBURGH -- For much of the 20th century, most people thought that stress caused stomach ulcers.

But that belief was largely dismissed 38 years ago when a study, that led to a Nobel Prize in 2016, described the bacterium that generates inflammation in the gastrointestinal tract and causes peptic ulcers and gastritis.

"The history of the idea...Read more

A community's fecal matter could give early warning of COVID-19 outbreaks, Yale study finds

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

By studying sewage at a New Haven wastewater treatment facility, a team of Yale researchers has determined that genetic code embedded in feces could be used as an early warning sign of COVID-19 outbreaks.

The team, led by Jordan Peccia of the Yale School of Engineering and Applied Science, tested daily samples of sludge for bits of coronavirus ...Read more