Additional information about CT scans

Click here to get general information about CT scans from the National Institutes of Health. Click here to link to an abstract (a brief summary) of research that Dr. Aaron Sodickson presented last year at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America, held in Chicago. Doctors are weighing the pluses and minuses of using CT scans to detect heart disease and, more specifically, coronary artery disease — the atherosclerotic blockages in the arteries that supply the heart that can lead to heart attacks. (Locked) More »

Additional information about cutting health care costs

The Health Letter prepared a chart listing medications available as generics in some forms and doses but as brand-name-only drugs in others: Link to a Philadelphia Inquirer story about a study showing that hospital-acquired infections are associated with large increase in medical costs: Link to a talk about health care costs and behavioral economics given in August 2008 by Peter Orszag, director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) in the Obama administration. Orszag was head of the Congressional Budget Office when he gave this talk, which he reprised several months later when he delivered the Marshall J. Seidman Lecture on Health Policy at Harvard Medical School. More »

Additional information about vaccines

Link to the 2009 adult vaccine schedule from the federal government's Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Link to Spanish-language version of the 2009 adult vaccine schedule: Link to full text of October 2008 Harvard Health Letter article about the shingles vaccine: (Locked) More »

12 ways to cut health care costs

Individuals can reduce their health care costs by following these suggestions, which include developing a consistent relationship with a primary care physician, taking generic medications when possible, and discussing end-of-life issues ahead of time. More »

All the pretty pictures

The prevalence of CT scanning has had a marked impact on medical diagnosis, but the radiation from a CT scan is much higher than from a traditional x-ray, and people who undergo repeated scans may be at increased risk for cancer. (Locked) More »

Weighing on our minds

It was previously believed that heavier people were less likely to develop dementia than thinner people, but recent evidence has shown that people with more abdominal fat in middle age are more likely to develop dementia later in life. (Locked) More »