Avoiding a pain in the neck

Nearly 21 million women live with neck pain. The problem is typically caused by arthritis and degenerative disk disease, and accentuated by poor posture, declining muscle strength, stress, and a lack of sleep. The best treatment for neck pain is a combination of aerobic exercise, strength training, and stretching exercises. Ergonomic improvements such as keeping a computer monitor at eye level and putting a tablet reader at a 45° angle can also help prevent neck pain.   (Locked) More »

Ask the doctor: Can migraines lead to memory loss?

Some studies have linked migraine headaches to an increased risk of symptom-free or "silent" strokes, which can lead to memory loss and dementia. However, the Women's Health Study did not find a higher risk cognitive decline in women with migraines. (Locked) More »

Can aspirin help fight cancer?

Aspirin is one of the most widely used medications in the world. In addition to its applications for pain relief and prevention of heart attacks and strokes, research is now finding aspirin may be valuable for cancer prevention. Studies have highlighted aspirin’s ability to prevent several types of cancer, including esophageal, pancreatic, lung, colorectal, prostate, skin, and breast cancers. Although it’s too early to recommend aspirin specifically for cancer prevention, this may provide an additional benefit for people who are already on daily aspirin therapy.   (Locked) More »

Stopping repeated urinary tract infections

A short urethra, coupled with the drop in estrogen after menopause, increases older women’s susceptibility to urinary tract infections (UTIs). The lack of estrogen can also lead to vaginal atrophy, which can increase the risk of recurrent urinary infections. Antibiotics are the mainstay of treatment for UTIs, and some women who get several UTIs a year may need to take them long-term. To prevent repeat infections, women should make sure to fully empty their bladder each time they use the bathroom, urinate after sex, and drink plenty of water.   (Locked) More »

Treating many conditions with just one pill

A polypill is a treatment that combines three, four, or more medicines into a single pill. It’s an idea that could make it easier to take medicines, and thereby prevent many women from missing essential medications. Studies conducted so far have found that a polypill combining a statin and blood pressure–lowering drugs effectively reduced LDL cholesterol and blood pressure. Researchers still need to establish the dose of each medicine in the polypill that will be safe and effective for the largest number of people. More »

Making smart screening decisions: Part 4: Commercial screening tests

There is no evidence that commercial screening tests for conditions such as carotid artery disease, aortic abdominal aneurysm, peripheral artery disease, and chronic kidney disease are useful for women who aren’t at high risk for them. Commercial screening tests can be expensive, and they aren’t generally covered by insurance. Rather than investing in unnecessary tests, women are better off seeing their doctor to identify their disease risk factors.   (Locked) More »

No need for routine ovarian cancer screening

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) has reaffirmed its 2004 recommendation that women at low risk not be routinely screened for ovarian cancer, because routine screening does not reduce ovarian cancer deaths. (Locked) More »

Fall prevention: What works?

Researchers have identified several effective fall prevention strategies, including home safety modifications, home-based exercise programs, tai chi, cataract surgery, changes to medication doses, and anti-slip shoes. (Locked) More »