Tag Archives: patient

Journalist describes her quest to give voice to patients struggling with psychosis

“The more I focus on my thoughts, the more I feel like they don’t belong to me” — that is how Anna, an individual with psychosis, describes her experience.

This disruption in a person’s sense of self has long fascinated Rachel Aviv, staff writer for The New Yorker, she said in a recent campus talk sponsored by the Poynter Fellowship in Journalism. (more…)

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How patients make medical decisions

ANN ARBOR — Sooner or later, everyone faces decisions about whether or not to have surgery, take a new medication or have a cancer-screening test.

A new University of Michigan study published in Health Expectations explores the costs and benefits patients say are important in making these kinds of medical decisions, and how those costs and benefits explain what they actually decide to do. (more…)

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UCLA doctors successfully ‘vacuum’ 2-foot blood clot out of patient’s heart

First in state to perform minimally invasive alternative to open-heart surgery

Todd Dunlap, 62, arrived at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center’s emergency room on Aug. 8 suffering from shortness of breath, fatigue and extreme cold. When a CT scan revealed a 24-inch clot stretching from his legs into his heart, doctors feared the mass could break loose and lodge in his lungs, blocking oxygen and killing him instantly.

Dr. John Moriarty gave his patient a choice. Dunlap could have open-heart surgery or undergo a new minimally invasive procedure using a device called AngioVac to vacuum the massive clot out of his heart. The catch? The procedure had never been successfully performed in California. (more…)

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Tingling sensation caused by Asian spice could help patients with chronic pain

The science behind the tingling sensation caused by eating a popular Asian spice has been explained by researchers at UCL.

The study, which is published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B, helps shed light on the complex interactions between the senses of taste and touch, and could lead to a greater understanding of the causes of the tingling sensations experienced by many chronic pain patients.

Widely used in Asian cooking, the Szechuan pepper was found to mimic the sense of touch in the brain. It chemically activates light-touch fibres on the lips and tongue and sends the equivalent of 50 light taps to the brain per second. (more…)

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UCLA Researchers Further Refine ‘Nanovelcro’ Device to Grab Single Cancer Cells from Blood

Improvement enables ‘liquid biopsies’ for metastatic melanoma

Researchers at UCLA report that they have refined a method they previously developed for capturing and analyzing cancer cells that break away from patients’ tumors and circulate in the blood. With the improvements to their device, which uses a Velcro-like nanoscale technology, they can now detect and isolate single cancer cells from patient blood samples for analysis.

Circulating tumor cells, or CTCs, play a crucial role in cancer metastasis, spreading from tumors to other parts of the body, where they form new tumors. When these cells are isolated from the blood early on, they can provide doctors with critical information about the type of cancer a patient has, the characteristics of the individual cancer and the potential progression of the disease. Doctors can also tell from these cells how to tailor a personalized treatment to a specific patient. (more…)

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For This Doctor, Hope Amidst Fear is the Best Medicine

Dr. Alfredo Quiñones-Hinojosa may not be able to cure his patients’ brain cancer, but there is one thing that the internationally renowned neurosurgeon and neuroscientist can provide them with: hope.

During a recent visit to campus Quiñones-Hinojosa discussed his journey from a migrant farm worker to a doctor who researches the deadliest form of brain cancer, glioblastomas. His talk was sponsored by La Casa Cultural Center, the Latino Cultural Center at Yale. (more…)

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Helping Patients Navigate New Cancer Drugs

As cancer treatment in pill form transforms how care is delivered, a new Michigan State University study underscores the challenges patients face in administering their own chemotherapy outside the supervised environment of a cancer clinic.

Chemotherapy pills can target specific cancers better than some traditional intravenous drugs, said Sandra Spoelstra, the MSU assistant professor of nursing who led the study. But they also can be difficult for patients to take. (more…)

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Transfusions add Risk in Some Heart Attacks

A new study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine finds that while blood transfusions for heart attack patients with anemia are commonly performed in emergency rooms, the practice can increase the risk of death when the transfusions are too extensive. The authors, led by Saurav Chatterjee, a cardiology fellow at Brown University, compared evidence from 10 prior studies of more than 203,000 patients.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — When heart attack patients present in the emergency department with some degree of anemia, or anemic patients have a heart attack, physicians have a tendency, but not much guidance, about whether to provide a blood transfusion. The idea is that a transfusion could help more oxygen get to the heart. Recent national guidelines suggested that there simply isn’t good evidence to encourage or discourage the common practice, but a new meta-analysis of 10 studies involving more than 203,000 such patients comes down on the side of it increasing the risk of death. (more…)

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