Originally published on Tue February 18, 2014 1:02 pm
Dealing with the aftermath of a suicide or attempted suicide is stressful enough. But some health plans make a harrowing experience worse by refusing to cover medical costs for injuries that are related to suicide, even though the federal health law doesn't allow such exclusions, legal and government analysts say.
Yet patients or their loved ones often don't realize that.
Electronic cigarettes are often billed as a safe way for smokers to try to kick their habit. But it's not just smokers who are getting their fix this way. According to a survey published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 5 middle school students who've tried one say they've never smoked a "real" cigarette. And between 2011 and 2012, e-cigarettes doubled in popularity among middle and high school students.
New research finds a close connection between the flu that devastated the horse population in North America in the 1870s and the avian flu of that period.
Credit Hulton Archive / Getty Images
As flu-watchers like to say, you can always count on influenza virus to surprise.
The latest revelation is that scientists have apparently been wrong about where new flu viruses come from. The dogma is that they always incubate in wild migratory birds, then get into domestic poultry, and then jump into mammals — especially pigs and humans.
Originally published on Tue February 18, 2014 10:48 am
Credit Katherine Streeter for NPR
On the surface, the 39-year-old construction worker looks like any other patient with back pain. He came to the Washington, D.C., emergency room, where I work, in severe discomfort after moving heavy cinder blocks a few days before.
The pain gets worse with twisting and bending, but he has no numbness or weakness in his legs. There's no tenderness along his spine, no difficulty urinating, no fever, so there's nothing to suggest a fracture, infection, spinal cord mass or anything other than a muscle strain.