Archive for January, 2018

False alarm in Hawaii: Preparing for the unthinkable

Peter Grinspoon, MD

Contributing Editor

While the recent emergency alert in Hawaii was a false alarm, the potential threat of a nuclear strike does serve as a reminder that it’s prudent to make advance preparations for this or some other unexpected event.

When to worry about your child’s sore throat

Claire McCarthy, MD

Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

Sore throats are common in children, often occurring with colds, but there are situations when a sore throat is an indication of a more serious problem and you should call the child’s doctor.

Medical marijuana

Peter Grinspoon, MD

Contributing Editor

Medical marijuana is controversial, in part because many people aren’t aware of how and why it is used. Most commonly it is used to ease pain, and doctors need to be prepared for the questions their patients will have about it.

The ghost in the basement

Bill Williams

Guest Contributor

A father struggles to understand the terrible course of his son’s heroin addiction and the loss of a child who eventually died from an accidental overdose.

Rhabdo: A rare but serious complication of… exercise

The condition rhabdomyolysis (known as rhabdo) occurs when muscle tissue leaks its contents into the bloodstream, and can be caused by intense physical activity. Anyone starting a new workout or fitness routine should evaluate their fitness level and take precautions to exercise safely.

The flu is here — and so is a new advisory from the CDC

Robert H. Shmerling, MD

Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

If you have not yet gotten a flu shot, the CDC has issued an advisory for this season that may make you reconsider. The severity of the virus is stronger this year, and while the vaccine may not be as effective as in years past, some protection is better than none.

5 common problems that can mimic ADHD

Claire McCarthy, MD

Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

While the incidence of ADHD in children has climbed, behavior or concentration problems in a child do not automatically mean that child has ADHD. Doctors and parents should consider these other possible causes when evaluating a child.

Another option for life-threatening allergic reactions

Susan Farrell, MD

Contributing Editor

For the millions of people with allergies to foods and medications, the availability of another pre-filled epinephrine product provides an option that should mean greater accessibility and lower cost for this vital medication.

Working through workplace stigma: Coming back after an addiction

Peter Grinspoon, MD

Contributing Editor

For many people, the most significant challenge when returning to the workplace after treatment for a substance use disorder is overcoming the doubts that coworkers may have about working with an addict. But doubt may weigh just as heavily on the person returning to work.

Is “man flu” really a thing?

Robert H. Shmerling, MD

Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

The concept of “man flu” sounds like a joke or a ploy for sympathy, but men and women do experience other diseases and conditions differently, and there is some evidence that this is also true of the influenza virus.