Archive for November, 2017

Looking under the hood: How brain science informs addiction treatment

Treatment of substance use disorders starts with the clinicians who see patients directly, but the ongoing search for more effective treatment options that will help the widest range of people begins with brain science.

New app helps parents track and encourage their child’s development

Claire McCarthy, MD

Senior Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

A new app from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides parents with a new resource to help them keep track of their child’s development milestones.

What’s new with the flu shot?

Dominic Wu, MD

Contributing Editor

If you are planning to get a flu shot but have not yet done so, it may be worth waiting a little longer, as data on patients from four recent flu seasons found that protection against the virus declined over the course of the winter.

The cost of chronic pain

Laura Kiesel


Even with comprehensive insurance, people with chronic conditions must shoulder the costs of many treatment-related expenses that are not covered because they are considered complementary or alternative therapies.

I love my kids but they’ve ruined my neck

Steve Calechman


People who have kids spend a lot of time looking down. Even those who don’t probably spend a lot of time looking down at their phone, tablet, or laptop. Either way it’s bad for the neck muscles; a physical therapist offers some advice.

We heard you — incontinence affects men too. Here’s what you need to know

Matthew Solan

Executive Editor, Harvard Men's Health Watch

Urinary incontinence is more common in women, but men experience it too, particularly as they get older. Whether it’s urge incontinence or stress incontinence, there are strategies and treatments that can help.

New study downplays potential risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease among elderly men treated with hormonal therapy for prostate cancer

Charlie Schmidt

Editor, Harvard Medical School Annual Report on Prostate Diseases

The male hormone testosterone contributes to normal brain function, and some research links memory loss in older men to testosterone declines that occur naturally with aging. However, testosterone is also like jet fuel for prostate tumors, causing them to grow faster, so during cancer treatment doctors will often give hormonal therapies that suppress its activities […]

Using social media to help parents get vaccine questions answered

Claire McCarthy, MD

Senior Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

Doctors want their patients to have access to accurate and helpful health information, and today that means online. Researchers found that expectant mothers who used a website that provided information about vaccines were more likely to get their babies vaccinated.

Are sprouted grains more nutritious than regular whole grains?

People looking for more nutritional value from food should consider adding sprouted grains to their diet. They offer higher percentages of nutrients compared to whole-grain products, and may be easier for some people to digest.

Researchers may have discovered a cause of multiple sclerosis

Robert H. Shmerling, MD

Senior Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

Looking for possible causes of multiple sclerosis, researchers found that people who had a concussion prior to age 20 had a greater risk of developing MS, suggesting head injuries are a risk factor.