Medical Notes 18-50


Medical Notes this week…

Millions of people take low dose aspirin in hopes of warding off a heart attack. Millions more take omega-3 fish oil supplements in part for the same reason. But a pair of studies in the Lancet and The New England Journal of Medicine show that if you’re healthy and haven’t had a heart attack already… neither one will do you much good. In both studies, heart events were virtually the same as for people taking a placebo. And those taking aspirin had nearly twice the stomach bleeding… and a lot more indigestion.

People who’ve suffered a terrible loss often suffer worse health afterward. Now scientists have tracked one reason. A study at Rice University shows that people suffering from severe grief experience as much as 53 percent higher levels of inflammation throughout the body compared to normal people, and that outward signs of depression are no guide to the inflammation going on inside. Researchers say inflammation contributes to almost every disease in older people… especially heart attack and stroke.

And finally… some people consider attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder to be a disability. But a study in The Journal of Creative Behavior finds that in some fields, like marketing, product design, and technology, having ADHD is an asset to employment. Researchers find that people with ADHD resist conformity and ignore typical information. In short, they much more easily think outside the box.

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17-07 Segment 2: Music for the Dying and Grieving

Woman's hands playing harp

 

Music thanatology is a specialized practice of playing harp music for the dying. A practitioner of the art explains how there is also science to it as well, and a woman whose family has used it describes her experience.

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15-35 Segment 2: Grief

 

Synopsis: Everyone deals with grief at one time or another. An expert discusses how it’s experienced by most people, and what separates normal grief from more problematic depression A writer/illustrator discusses his experience dealing with his spouse’s sudden death.

Host: Nancy Benson. Guests: Dr. Ronald Pies, Professor of Psychiatry, State University of New York Upstate Medical Univ. and Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, Tufts University; Danny Gregory, author and illustrator, A Kiss Before You Go

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Click here for the transcript

15-26 Segment 2: Doctor’s Emotions

 

Synopsis: Many doctors believe emotion is detrimental to medical practice, and many patients think doctors are cold and emotionless. But one influential physician explains why emotion is important to doctors.

Host: Lynn Holley. Guest: Dr. Danielle Ofri, Associate Professor of Medicine, New York University School of Medicine and author, What Doctors Feel: How Emotions Affect the Practice of Medicine

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Click here for transcript