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Michigan's top health official abruptly resigns without explanation, deputy replaces him

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

LANSING, Mich. — Robert Gordon, director of the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and a key, but controversial figure in the state's response to COVID-19, announced his resignation Friday from Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's administration.

Gordon gained the public spotlight after the Michigan Supreme Court ruled Oct. 2 that Whitmer ...Read more

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Nationwide survey finds physician satisfaction with telehealth

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

In late November, the COVID-19 HealthCare Coalition, comprising more than 1,000 health care organizations, technology firms and nonprofits, including Mayo Clinic, published the Telehealth Impact Physician Survey results.

The survey, managed through Mayo Clinic and led by Steve Ommen, M.D., medical director, Mayo Clinic Center for Connected Care...Read more

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What pregnant and breastfeeding women should know about COVID-19 vaccine

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

Pregnant women are at an increased risk for serious illness from COVID-19.

"Compared to nonpregnant women who have the same health and age, a COVID-infected woman is about 1.3 to 1.4 times more likely to end up in the hospital when she's pregnant," says Dr. Regan Theiler, a Mayo Clinic obstetrician.

Should pregnant and breastfeeding women be ...Read more

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What's the concern with COVID-19 variants?

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

Currently, three new variants of the virus (SARS-CoV-2) that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) are creating concern. They include:

A variant identified in the U.K. This COVID-19 variant (B.1.1.7) has 23 mutations. Several of these mutations are in the spikelike S protein that the virus uses to attach itself to the surface of human ...Read more

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I tried to start a pandemic pod for my 5-year-old. Here's how it went wrong

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

My 5-year-old started to resent her situation in late March, soon after the schools closed and after we barred play dates and trips to Chuck E. Cheese.

As the pandemic enveloped Southern California and Cora realized she wouldn't see her friends for some time, her growing frustration manifested itself in misbehavior, picking fights and door ...Read more

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Flu and other infections are down, likely due to COVID-19 social distancing

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

The usual broken bones and other trauma are being treated this winter at the emergency department of St. Christopher's Hospital for Children. But one category of medical complaints has all but disappeared: infectious disease.

Take influenza, for example. Typically between December and April, nurses and doctors at the Philadelphia hospital see ...Read more

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COVID-19 has more people seeking help for addiction and mental health. But treatment centers struggle with outbreaks

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

PHILADELPHIA – In July, Erica Rodriguez, 20, checked herself into the Renfrew Center, a residential center for eating-disorder treatment in the Philadelphia area. Rodriguez, who has been struggling with disordered eating since she was 12, had relapsed in quarantine.

“It had gotten to the point that I was feeling a bad physical toll,” she ...Read more

Kris Tripplaar/Sipa USA/TNS

Health groups' push to end donations may lack political punch

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

WASHINGTON — Big-name health care corporations and lobbying groups made a show of cutting off lawmakers from political donations following the attack on the Capitol by a pro-Trump mob. But it’s unclear how long this penalty will last — or if the lawmakers who voted against certifying the election results will even really feel the blow.

...Read more

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5 reasons to wear a mask even after you're vaccinated

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

As an emergency physician, Dr. Eugenia South was in the first group of people to receive a COVID-19 vaccine. She received her second dose last week — even before President Joe Biden.

Yet South said she’s in no rush to throw away her face mask.

“I honestly don’t think I’ll ever go without a mask at work again,” said South, faculty ...Read more

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Vaccine trial participants who received placebo now hop the line for the real thing from Pfizer, Moderna

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

Good news for tens of thousands of volunteers in the COVID-19 vaccine trials: Many of those who received a placebo are now being offered a vaccine — in some cases, earlier than they would otherwise have been eligible.

Participants in Pfizer’s vaccine study — some of whom had mounted a noisy campaign on social media — have been advised ...Read more

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Ask the Pediatrician: Can teaching my children gratitude help with their mental health?

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

A: As the COVID-19 pandemic rages on, its effects on our everyday lives feel never-ending. As parents, we want to provide our children with a sense of consistency and normalcy in the middle of a time filled with uncertainty, fear and change — not an easy task to accomplish.

We are all grappling with the ever-changing rules and demands placed ...Read more

Pump up your breakfast

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

We’ve heard the old adage that “breakfast is the most important meal of the day,” right? Although I would argue that it’s not necessarily always more important than lunch or dinner, there is a wealth of evidence in favor of including breakfast on a regular basis. Several studies have noted a range of benefits associated with starting ...Read more

5 winter health myths busted

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

Some cold-weather wisdom is light on facts. Problem is, these fictions don’t just give you the warm and fuzzies — they can pack on the pounds, stuff up your nose and even increase your risk of cancer. This season, don’t let these winter health myths get the best of you.

1. Cold air can make you sick.

Despite it being called the common ��...Read more

Mayo Clinic Q&A: Regular exercise may slow postmenopausal bone loss

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

DEAR MAYO CLINIC: What are the latest medications or exercise recommendations for women who want to avoid osteoporosis? I am 55 and went through menopause a few years ago.

ANSWER: Although some bone loss is inevitable after menopause, developing a regular exercise routine can be useful in limiting that loss. Medications can be used to limit ...Read more

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How the COVID pandemic has impacted issues of obesity

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

Obesity increases the risk of severe illness from COVID-19 and other health problems, such as heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and certain cancers.

"One of the most prevalent conditions in this country and around the world is increased weight and obesity," says Dr. Donald Hensrud, director of the Mayo Clinic Healthy Living Program. ...Read more

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Mayo Clinic Q And A: Genetic abnormalities and cancer risk

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

DEAR MAYO CLINIC: My mom was diagnosed with breast cancer. During her care, she was found to have a BRCA2 mutation. Her doctor suggested that my brothers and I get tested for this mutation, too. I am a 26-year-old woman, and I am not sure what this means for me and my risk of cancer.

ANSWER: Having a loved one with a breast cancer diagnosis can...Read more

Olive oil or coconut oil: Which is worthy of kitchen-staple status?

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

Coconut oil has developed a cult-like following in recent years, with proponents touting benefits ranging from body fat reduction to heart disease prevention. Sadly for devotees, the evidence to support these assertions remains rather sparse.

But there is plenty of research to suggest that other plant-based oils have advantages over their ...Read more

Mayo Clinic Q&A: Regular exercise may slow postmenopausal bone loss

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

DEAR MAYO CLINIC: What are the latest medications or exercise recommendations for women who want to avoid osteoporosis? I am 55 and went through menopause a few years ago.

ANSWER: Although some bone loss is inevitable after menopause, developing a regular exercise routine can be useful in limiting that loss. Medications can be used to limit ...Read more

Dreamstime/TNS

As overdoses soar, feds make it easier for doctors to prescribe addiction medication

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

Days after a new report showing that fatal overdoses have skyrocketed to record highs during the COVID-19 pandemic, the federal Department of Health and Human Services has relaxed a regulation around prescribing addiction medication in an effort to combat the rising death toll.

Buprenorphine, a popular opioid addiction treatment drug, has long ...Read more

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Healthy Men: COVID affects everything — even your sex life

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

Dear Healthy Men: I had a nasty case of COVID-19 several months ago. It’s taken a while, but I’m fully recovered — except for one thing: I’ve been having trouble getting and keeping an erection. I know that most men have erection troubles at some point, but I never have before and I’m wondering whether there could be any connection ...Read more