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Fraudulent 'pop-up' COVID testing centers are rampant. Here are 8 tips to help protect against phony clinics and testing scams

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

CHICAGO -- Tricia Poreda recently walked inside a COVID-19 testing center on Chicago's Northwest Side and was immediately appalled by the facility’s lack of basic health and safety protocols.

Employees collecting specimens weren’t changing gloves or washing hands in between patients, she recalled. The site didn’t seem to be enforcing ...Read more

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Mayo Clinic Q and A: Light therapy for seasonal affective disorder

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

DEAR MAYO CLINIC: Once daylight saving time ends, I find it difficult as it gets darker earlier. I also notice that I get a bit more depressed in the winter. My friend suggested a light box for seasonal affective disorder. What is a light box? And can it be helpful in improving my mood?

ANSWER: Seasonal affective disorder, or SAD, is a type of ...Read more

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Where are you most likely to catch COVID? New study highlights high risk locations

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

What are the odds of catching COVID-19 after a night at the movie theater? How about an afternoon at the gym, unmasked? Or an early morning jog in a neighborhood park?

It’s well known that certain places and activities carry varying risks of coronavirus exposure, but a new study takes away much of the guesswork, offering clear estimates ...Read more

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Lung cancer: It is about more than smoking

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

ROCHESTER, Minn.— World Cancer Day is February 4 and that makes this the ideal time to talk about lung cancer and smoking. Internationally, lung cancer is the most common cause of cancer deaths and the World Health Organization estimates that 90% of cases could be prevented by eliminating tobacco use.

People who smoke are at the greatest risk...Read more

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Another old drug is being tried vs. COVID-19, and might actually help

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

In the first few weeks of the pandemic, when physicians were grappling with the unknown like everyone else, psychiatrist Angela Reiersen recalled that an old drug in her field, called fluvoxamine, affected the body in ways that went beyond improving mental health.

In addition to easing symptoms of obsessive-compulsive disorder and depression, ...Read more

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Commentary: Anti-vaccine patients vent anger on health care workers like me. It takes a toll on care

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

As a pulmonary and critical care physician in Southern California treating hospitalized patients with COVID-19, I am noticing a rising tension. Beyond just being overwhelmed, we are now part of the collateral damage.

I recently asked a security guard to accompany me and an ICU nurse to meet the family of an unvaccinated 42-year-old firefighter ...Read more

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Mayo Clinic Minute: Why Black women need to be screened for cervical cancer

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

While all women can develop cervical cancer, non-Hispanic Black women are more likely to be diagnosed and die of cervical cancer, compared to white women in the U.S.

This disparity is not due to genetic differences among white, Black or Hispanic women, but rather related to systemic racism, access to health care and socioeconomic factors, says ...Read more

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Consumer Health: Blood donation saves lives; are you a donor?

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

January is National Blood Donor Month, which makes this a good time to become a blood donor.

Nearly 16 million blood components are transfused each year in the U.S., according to the American Red Cross. Daily needs include 29,000 units of red blood cells, 5,000 units of platelets and 6,500 units of plasma.

People need a blood transfusion for ...Read more

Mayo Clinic Q&A: Dealing with an overactive bladder

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

DEAR MAYO CLINIC: I am in my mid-30s and a mom of twins, and it seems that I recently developed what must be an overactive bladder. It hinders my daily activities and makes me feel embarrassed, as I often must excuse myself abruptly. I wake up multiple times at night, too. Sometimes I also seem to leak urine. Are these conditions common for ...Read more

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COVID killed droves of Indian health workers. Their families must fight for recompense

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

PUNE, India — Amanjit Singh’s father, a family doctor, was ordered to reopen his clinic as early cases of COVID-19 were spreading in Mumbai. Within days, his father — gasping for oxygen at home — was dead. Two days later, so was his mother.

Left to fend for himself, the 17-year-old Singh set out to collect the compensation the ...Read more

Sleep well and reduce your risk of dementia and death

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

In one blog post I discussed how beneficial sleep is for memory function. But sleep isn’t just good for your memory; it can actually reduce your risk of dementia — and death. Although it has been known for some time that individuals with dementia frequently have poor, fragmented sleep, two studies suggest that if you don’t get enough sleep...Read more

Nuts for Peanuts!

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

The peanut is not just an American tradition at baseball games, pubs, and as part of the iconic peanut butter and jelly sandwich, it’s also a global culinary superstar and a nutrient powerhouse

The folklore

Native to South America, this dietary staple dates back thousands of years. Aztecs also used peanuts medicinally to cure fever and ...Read more

The No. 1 way to eat more fruit

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

If you find it hard to eat enough fruit, then you need to start making smoothies. Here’s why smoothies are the No. 1 way to eat more fruit, plus an easy smoothie recipe with just three ingredients.

You can pack two or more servings of fruit into one smoothie.

The USDA recommends eating 1 to 2 cups (or pieces) of fruit per day and advises ...Read more

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Commentary: When an asymptomatic, COVID-positive doctor is still treating patients, we're losing a war

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

I’ve been dodging COVID since March 2020. Back then, I would have been appalled at having asymptomatic doctors and nurses infected with COVID treating patients, which state officials now say is permissible.

Now I see this as a necessity.

We’re losing this war.

Omicron is surging in huge numbers, a wave bred in the unvaccinated, the ...Read more

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E-cigarette users who test positive for COVID-19 are more likely to experience COVID-19 symptoms

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

ROCHESTER, Minn. — People who use electronic cigarettes and test positive for COVID-19 have a higher frequency of experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, compared to people who don't vape, according to new research from Mayo Clinic.

The study, which is published in the Journal of Primary Care & Community Health, finds that people who vape and test ...Read more

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Mayo Clinic Minute: How to be healthier in 2022

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

As the new year rolls on, sticking to a healthy lifestyle doesn't hinge only on days spent at the gym.

With goals in mind and a checkup with your health care provider, 2022 could be one of the best years for your mind and body.

____

Is your health a priority in the new year?

Dr. Stephen McMullan, a Mayo Clinic family medicine physician, ...Read more

Armando L. Sanchez/Chicago Tribune/TNS

'It's almost like a love letter': ICU doctor paints for his colleagues treating COVID patients

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

CHICAGO -- Every morning, Dr. Justin Fiala rides a CTA bus along Lake Shore Drive, and it feels like going into battle. Before the pandemic, stepping onto a bus was just a commute to work. He and other Chicagoans headed into the city together, toward busy downtown offices and mask-free cubicles.

Now, he wears an N95, and his 5 a.m. bus rides ...Read more

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Mayo Clinic Q and A: At-home tests for COVID-19

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

DEAR MAYO CLINIC: With COVID-19 continuing to be a concern, should I stock up on at-home COVID-19 tests so I don't have to wait in long lines to get tested elsewhere? What kind of tests are sold over the counter, and what should I know before purchasing them?

ANSWER: The emergence of the new omicron COVID-19 variant has increased the number of ...Read more

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Sources: Florida health officer Raul Pino placed on administrative leave after vaccination email

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

ORLANDO, Fla. — Dr. Raul Pino, who became a trusted voice of the pandemic response in the nation’s tourist capital, has been placed on administrative leave from his post as the state’s chief health officer in Orange County as the Florida Department of Health conducts an investigation.

Sources who spoke to the Orlando Sentinel on condition...Read more

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5 things to know about ordering free COVID tests

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

WASHINGTON — The federal website to order free rapid coronavirus tests went live on Tuesday, ahead of its scheduled Wednesday launch.

Covidtests.gov is an attempt by the Biden administration to remedy nationwide shortages of such at-home tests, with the president pledging the government will provide millions of such kits to Americans for free...Read more