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Medical Treatments

Patients Often Aren't Offered Minimally Invasive Surgery

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Laparascopic surgery can be faster, safer and cheaper, but patients don't always get the choice even if it's appropriate, a study finds. Using it more often would reduce complications and save money.

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Morning Edition

How 2 Children With Leukemia Helped Transform Its Treatment

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Cancer treatment for kids has changed dramatically since the 1960s. Back then, doctors experimented with approaches that seemed promising but were also potentially toxic. Some survivors look back.

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All Things Considered

Why The War On Cancer Hasn't Been Won

Monday, March 23, 2015

Medical researchers have made only modest progress treating the most common cancers since the war on cancer was declared in 1971. The disease has proved far more complicated than doctors had hoped.

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Stats Split On Progress Against Cancer

Monday, March 23, 2015

When you dig into the number on cancer, the results are mixed. Overall, deaths are up. But survival five years after diagnosis has improved for many forms of the disease, including breast cancer.

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If You're Going To Die Soon, Do You Really Need Statins?

Monday, March 23, 2015

Many older people are taking a lot of meds, and some drugs may not be doing them much good. When terminally ill people went off statins, they said they felt better. And it didn't increase their risk.

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Morning Edition

Rethinking Alcohol: Can Heavy Drinkers Learn To Cut Back?

Monday, March 23, 2015

The limit for healthy drinking may be less than you think — one drink a day for women and two for men, according to health experts. New strategies aim to help heavy drinkers reduce their intake.

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90 Years After Its Discovery, No Generic Insulin Sold In The U.S.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

A low-cost version the hormone that controls blood sugar among diabetics is no longer available in the United States. This story first aired March 19 on Morning Edition.

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Patients Freeze Scalps To Save Hair During Chemo

Sunday, March 22, 2015

When Brandie Saint Claire was diagnosed with throat cancer, she found a treatment that let her keep her hair during chemotherapy. NPR's Rachel Martin talks with Saint Claire about using cold caps.

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All Things Considered

Scientists Urge Temporary Moratorium On Human Genome Edits

Friday, March 20, 2015

Researchers who helped develop powerful techniques warn that tweaking the genome is now easy. More public debate's needed, they say, before making changes in genes passed from parent to child.

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Wireless Sensors Help Scientists Map Staph Spread Inside Hospital

Friday, March 20, 2015

Over four months of tracking and testing, French researchers mapped the hops that bacteria made from one person to another. Within a month, a third of patients were newly colonized with staph.

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For A Good Snooze, Take One Melatonin, Add Eye Mask And Earplugs

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Hospitals are notoriously difficult places to sleep, despite efforts to make them less noisy. Cheap, simple workarounds can help, a study says. Taking the sleep hormone melatonin helped the most.

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Morning Edition

Why Is Insulin So Expensive In The U.S.?

Thursday, March 19, 2015

The hormone that controls blood sugar among diabetics is one of the oldest medicines used today. But more than 90 years after its discovery, a low-cost version is no longer available in the U.S.

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How Much Can Women Trust That Breast Cancer Biopsy?

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Pathologists are great at spotting cancer, but less so at identifying atypical cells or DCIS, a study finds. That could lead to women getting too much treatment — or not enough.

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Risks Run High When Antipsychotics Are Prescribed For Dementia

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Results from an analysis of veterans' health records show a higher risk of death among people taking antipsychotic drugs for symptoms of dementia than has been documented before.

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Vaccination Gaps Helped Fuel Disneyland Measles Spread

Monday, March 16, 2015

The quick rise of measles infections in the wake of cases reported among Disneyland visitors underscores how even a small dip in vaccination rates can allow the virus to spread.

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Nurses Have To Translate When Medical Devices Fail To Communicate

Friday, March 13, 2015

Medical technology can make patient care better and more precise. But the gadgets and computers can cause trouble, too. One big problem is that most of the devices often can't talk with one another.

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Before The Gas Is Passed, Researchers Aim To Measure It In The Gut

Thursday, March 12, 2015

As people's health waxes or wanes because of stress or disease, their intestinal ecosystems change, too. It may be possible someday to diagnose disease by analyzing the gas the microbes make.

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All Things Considered

Would A Pill To Protect Teens From HIV Make Them Feel Invincible?

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Trials are underway to see how effective a pill approved for HIV prevention in adults may be for teenagers. But some worry Truvada could end up encouraging reckless sexual behavior among young people.

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Morning Edition

States Aim To Restrict Medically Induced Abortions

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

One in four abortions is induced with medications rather than a surgical procedure. But the process faces a growing number of legal restrictions, including a law in Ohio.

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Playing The Odds With Statins: Heart Disease Or Diabetes?

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Doctors hand out cholesterol-lowering statins like breath mints, but like any drug they come with risks. Less heart disease, sure, a slightly higher risk of diabetes, too. So what's a person to do?

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