Robert H. Shmerling, MD
Posts by Robert H. Shmerling, MD
Reports of severe lung illness experienced by hundreds of people who were using e-cigarettes again raise questions about the safety of vaping. While evidence suggests vaping can help some people stop smoking, potential health risks likely outweigh any benefit.
Do employee health programs lead to healthier, more productive employees? A large study shows little or no impact, although results might vary based on workplace, offerings, and other factors.
The FDA has banned the antibacterial agent triclosan from soaps starting in 2020. It’s still used in mouthwash, cosmetics, toothpaste and other household products and there are still concerns that striving to rid our environment of bacteria and germs helps fuel bacterial resistance to antibiotics.
Nearly everyone has experienced some sort of back pain, but unfortunately there is no single best treatment for it. Researchers seeking to evaluate the worth of chiropractic care as an option for back pain treatment studied military personnel, but the study did have some limitations.
While many people shower or bathe daily, it’s not necessary and may not be wise for your skin. Concerns about water use –– and what’s in our water –– also are worth considering.
Loss of the sense of smell affects quality of life and possibly safety, but it can also be a sign of a more serious illness. Researchers found that elderly people with a poor sense of smell were more likely to have certain illnesses, and more likely to die of them.
Tramadol is a unique prescription pain medicine similar to opioids. Research finds people taking it had a higher risk of dying than those taking other pain medicines. But a confounding factor may make tramadol seem more risky than it really is.
Considering memory supplements? Think again. In the US, prescription medicines are rigorously tested, but supplements are not and manufacturers can make claims that may or may not be true. But even supplement makers must follow certain rules, and recently the FDA announced a plan to revamp its regulation of dietary supplements.
Ever wonder whether order matters if you switch between drinking wine and beer? Well, researchers asked this question. The answer may surprise you (or not).
Infections from a drug-resistant fungus have been occuring around the world for the past decade. It’s not cause for panic, but it’s wise to understand the facts and ways to protect yourself.