Recent Blog Articles
I’m too young to have Alzheimer’s disease or dementia, right?
Asking about guns in houses where your child plays
Behavioral weight loss interventions: Do they work in primary care?
Who needs treatment for ocular hypertension?
The popularity of microdosing of psychedelics: What does the science say?
AFM: A scary polio-like illness
When can women with early-stage breast cancer skip radiation after lumpectomy?
Palliative care frightens some people: Here’s how it helps
The case of the bad placebo
Taking up adaptive sports
Harvard Health Blog
Read the latest posts from experts at Harvard Health Publishing covering a variety of health topics and perspectives on medical news.
Hormone therapy doesn’t seem to raise risk of cardiac death
Prostate cancer drug treatments that block the activity of hormones have been associated with a higher risk of heart attack and heart disease. But a 2009 study suggests that these drugs may not cause cardiovascular problems after all.
Statins show no effect on PSA levels
Ever since the FDA approved the first cholesterol-lowering statin in 1987, use of the drugs has steadily increased, with an estimated 13 million Americans taking them to ward off heart and vascular disease. Recently, statins have gained additional attention, thanks to studies showing the drugs might have anticancer properties. But researchers have inconsistent answers to […]
Dental fear? Our readers suggest coping techniques.
ARCHIVED CONTENT: As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date each article was posted or last reviewed. No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified […]
Hitch on Cancer
Thanks to my friend and colleague, Christopher Lovett, PhD, for alerting me to the vivid piece that Christopher Hitchens wrote about his cancer diagnosis. It appears in the September 2010 issue of Vanity Fair. Hitchens is a banality-basher. The value of his piece is in his detailed account — the particularity of his experience comes […]
Alzheimer’s study on biomarkers generates debate
A study about a three-protein signature that might help identify people with Alzheimer’s, published in the August issue of the Archives of Neurology, has generated quite a bit of discussion in the blogosphere. I thought readers might want to follow the discussion, so I’ve shared some links to representative posts. (We will be covering the […]
Torn your ACL? Send us your story.
You may have heard or read about the Swedish study published in The New England Journal of Medicine that found no difference between surgical repair of a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and taking a rehab-only approach. Some of our favorite sports stars here in New England have torn their ACLs recently, including Wes Welker, a receiver for the Patriots, and […]
Concussions in Football
I have to applaud today’s editorial in the New York Times that anticipates a new football season. Here is the first paragraph — The millionaire players of professional football are suiting up for the new season with a startling caution on their locker room walls. A poster headlined “CONCUSSION” warns players that lifelong brain damage […]
Mental illness affects the wallet as well as the brain
We often report about the psychological toll of mental illness, but while researching a story today I came across a study that documents the economic toll of psychiatric disorders–especially when they are not adequately treated. Researchers at Harvard collaborated with colleagues at the World Health Organization to survey individuals in 19 countries. They found that […]
Atul Gawande’s latest gem: Hospice care and our end-of-life wishes
Atul Gawande’s piece about end-of-life care in the Aug. 2 issue of The New Yorker is another gem by the surgeon-writer-health policy wonk and staff member at Harvard-affialiated Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. In an online chat after the article was published, Gawande said he had the usual preconceived notions about hospice before he started researching the article: Telling a patient […]
Are crabs and oysters good for your eyes?
Johns Hopkins researchers have a report in the the journal Opthalmology that sends a mixed message about whether omega-3 fats protect the eyes. And if you like to eat crab and oysters, enjoy—and we’re with you. But don’t expect any special ophthmalic benefits. Fish and shellfish are natural sources of the omega-3 fats that are believed to pay all kinds […]
Infertility may raise risk of aggressive prostate cancer
A 2010 study of more than 22,500 California men found that being infertile significantly raised the risk of developing aggressive disease.
Afraid of the dentist? How do you deal with it?
In our October issue of the Harvard Mental Health Letter, we offer advice about how to manage dental phobia. I’d love to hear from readers of this blog about what techniques they use to cope with their own dental fear. I’ll compile representative replies in a later post. (This issue is one I grapple with […]
Unconscious or Subconscious?
ARCHIVED CONTENT: As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date each article was posted or last reviewed. No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician. […]
PSA — Old controversies, new results
Many experts believe prostate cancer is the exception to the rule when it comes to screening. In fact, PSA screening may actually do more harm than good. Two studies, one conducted in the U.S. and the other in Europe, were hopefully going to settle the debate over the value of the PSA. While they gave us some answers, we are still a long way from settling the debate.
One couple’s story: Handling prostate cancer in the face of differing biopsies
Elliot and Elizabeth Boyd share their experience with a prostate cancer diagnosis, explain their next steps in light of seemingly contradictory test results, and offer advice to those coping with their diagnosis and weighing treatment options.
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