Health Advice



The 'M' in MD Doesn't Mean 'Man'

Scott LaFee on

A recent study found that women physicians were more than twice as likely as their male colleagues to have patients omit their "doctor" titles when addressing them. The researchers used a natural language processing algorithm to comb through nearly 91,000 messages sent from patients in the Mayo Clinic electronic medical record, picking out the greeting and closing salutations of each message.

The omission of these doctors' titles (or "untitling") is subtle, but these remarks accumulate to create "death by a thousand cuts," study author Lekshmi Santhosh told STAT News.

Straight Talk About Uterine Cancer

For anyone who has ever used permanent hair dyes or straighteners, the experience typically involves strong, sometimes burning chemicals. A new study reports an association between hair straighteners and a higher risk of uterine cancer, a link that grows stronger the more often the chemicals are applied.

Scientists studied more than 33,000 women for nearly 11 years and found that those who used hair straighteners more than four times per year were more than twice as likely to develop uterine cancer compared to those who didn't use the products.

Researchers had previously linked the use of permanent hair dye and straighteners to increased breast and ovarian cancer risk.


Body of Knowledge

It takes approximately 300 pounds per square inch to stretch an arterial wall to its breaking point. By comparison, tooth enamel requires 5,100 pounds and collagen (tendon) 1.45 x 10 to the fourth power. All of which suggests that, evolutionarily speaking, aneurisms haven't been much of a worry (until recently).

Get Me That, Stat!

Hispanic people comprise more than 18% of the U.S. population and are among the groups more likely to develop Alzheimer's disease. (They are 1.5 times more likely than whites.) But Hispanics account for just 2% of participants in Alzheimer's clinical trials.


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