More Medical Myths

Posted by & filed under Noah's Notes.

The beginning of April always brings to mind the usual jokes and the relentless, unsuccessful attempts my family always made to pull off successful pranks in recognition of this unofficial holiday. I guess we were just not that imaginative. In healthcare there has always been great creativity applied in attempts to prevent disease and to… Read more »

All About Dementia

Posted by & filed under Noah's Notes.

Memory loss and dementia are among the healthcare problems that people fear the most. They are also among those that create the most significant challenges for families and caregivers, and often without the supports or resources to respond as fully as we would like. But knowledge is power and the more we understand the problem,… Read more »

Should You Get Health Insurance?

Posted by & filed under Noah's Notes.

“Open Enrollment” for 2015, which is the time when you can sign up for health insurance and, if you qualify, get subsidy for the premiums, ends on February 15. With that deadline fast approaching you may want to consider the reasons you should consider getting coverage. You won’t have an opportunity to enroll after February… Read more »

New Year Commitments

Posted by & filed under Noah's Notes.

Well, it’s that time of year, isn’t it? An opportunity for a fresh start with a fresh year and many of us make resolutions aimed at our health and wellbeing. Our good intentions don’t always translate into sustained action, but perhaps prioritizing our health goals would help. What follows is based on a Facebook post… Read more »

Time for New Thinking About Chronic Pain

Posted by & filed under Noah's Notes.

Over the last 25 years our approach to chronic pain has shifted dramatically. Beginning around 1990 and without science to support the approach, it was determined that chronic pain should be treated with opioid pain killers (commonly referred to as narcotics – medications like oxycodone, Oxycontin, morphine and Vicodin), that there was no unsafe dose… Read more »

Immunize Me

Posted by & filed under Noah's Notes.

The understandable concern about Ebola has raised public awareness of communicable diseases, especially viral illnesses, and some of the challenges in treating them. And while Ebola is a terrible disease and is causing devastation in Western Africa, it actually poses very little threat to citizens of the US. Politics, unrelenting media coverage and the devastating… Read more »

New Recommendations for Birth Control in Teens

Posted by & filed under Noah's Notes.

Through much of my career the standard approach to contraception for adolescents had been to offer birth control pills and barrier methods (condoms). Intrauterine devices (IUD) were avoided because of concerns about their potential impact on future fertility. In the last decade or so progesterone injections, which offer protection for 3 months at a time,… Read more »

Cancer Screening, Part 2

Posted by & filed under Noah's Notes.

Last month I wrote about the kind of cancers for which adults of a certain age should consider regular screening examinations.  As part of that discussion I mentioned several forms of cancer for which there is no evidence of benefit from screening, and even some for which there is evidence of harm from screening!  This… Read more »

Cancer Screening

Posted by & filed under Noah's Notes.

Over the past weekend I had the pleasure of participating in EMMC’s Champion the Cure Challenge and like most families, mine has been profoundly impacted by cancer.  I lost my father to leukemia and a sister to breast cancer and I have two more sisters who have had breast cancer (one cured and one currently… Read more »