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More May Mean Long

Health Advice / Scott LaFee /

For a small but troubling number of people who get COVID-19, the symptoms do not pass after just a couple of weeks. They persist, often for months, perhaps longer. A new study suggests one way to predict who might be a long-hauler is the number of symptoms that manifest in the early days, such as fatigue, headache, shortness of breath, fever, ...Read more

Hack to School

Health Advice / Scott LaFee /

As schools reopen to in-classroom instruction, there may be a cautionary tale from Hong Kong. When children there returned to school in October, large numbers of kids began getting sick, despite mandatory masking, more spacing between desks and other measures intended to reduce the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

But the vast majority of sick...Read more

Those Lyin' Eyes

Health Advice / Scott LaFee /

The Eagles may have been singing about something else, but new research suggests that eyes are not necessarily true windows to the soul -- or, more precisely, how another person is feeling.

It's a common notion that "smiling eyes" that involve uplifted cheeks and crinkles around the eyes indicate genuine happiness. They even have a technical ...Read more

Looking up From a Lockdown

Health Advice / Scott LaFee /

Pandemic-related lockdowns have become associated with a host of personal and social ills, from loneliness and isolation to poor schooling to increased rates of drug use. But a study published in the British Journal of Psychiatry surveyed 385 caregivers of children ages 6-16 and found that some people have discovered an upside to being stuck ...Read more

Got Those Genes at Half-Price

Health Advice / Scott LaFee /

Some folks are seemingly obsessed with bargain hunting or extreme couponing. Assumed to be a habit copied from parents, a new study published in The Journal of the Association for Consumer Research suggests there might actually be a genetic component.

Researchers studied more than 100 pairs of twins (identical and fraternal), comparing their ...Read more

Make a Clean Getaway

Health Advice / Scott LaFee /

The Food and Drug Administration is advising consumers to avoid hand sanitizers from Mexico, which may contain a toxic form of alcohol. Some of these products use methanol or wood alcohol, which can be toxic when absorbed through the skin.

Methanol-contaminated hand sanitizers have been implicated in blindness, cardiac and central nervous ...Read more

For Obsessive Behavior, an Electric Finding

Health Advice / Scott LaFee /

New research suggests low-frequency electrical stimulation of the brain may help people reduce obsessive behaviors, such as hoarding. It's estimated the neurological disorder affects nearly 1 billion people worldwide.

Scientists believe obsessive behaviors are the result of abnormal habit-learning. Something goes wrong in the brain where ...Read more

Vaccinating the World

Health Advice / Scott LaFee /

As frustratingly slow as the COVID-19 vaccination rollout has been in the United States, it's a lot worse in many parts of the world, especially lower-income nations. The International Rescue Committee estimates that only 20% of populations in these nations are likely to be vaccinated in 2021.

The reasons for immunizations falling behind, ...Read more

Masking an Unfortunate Truth

Health Advice / Scott LaFee /

President Joe Biden has asked Americans to embrace mask-wearing for at least the first 100 days of his administration, an effort to stanch the spread of COVID-19. Many Americans say they are amenable and supportive, but that doesn't mean you'll see many of them actually wearing masks.

An online poll, conducted by the USC Dornsife Center for ...Read more

Oxygen Bias

Health Advice / Scott LaFee /

Pulse oximeters are devices clipped painlessly onto fingers to externally measure blood oxygen levels. That would seem to be a singularly straightforward diagnostic, but new research suggests there is a potential racial bias that might put Black patients at risk.

Oximeters work by passing small beams of light through skin and the blood in the...Read more

Surgery and Birthdays Don't Mix

Health Advice / Scott LaFee /

A recent study found that older patients who underwent surgical procedures on a surgeon's birthday were more likely to die within a month of the procedure compared with those who were operated on any other day.

One possible reason may be surgeons feeling rushed to complete operations on their birthdays to accommodate post-work plans.

...Read more

 

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