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Ethics of pain management

Sandra H. Johnson, JD, offers her viewpoint in her article, Legal and Ethical Perspectives on Pain Management, published in the International Anesthesia Research Society, July 2007. A point that Johnson makes is that pain, without a physical injury, can legally be an injury. The problem is when health care professionals neglect pain patients for fear… Read More

Bipolar disorder related to a shrinking brain

BBC News reports that a University of Edinburgh study reveals that the brains of individuals with bipolar disorder shrink faster than expected. Researchers based their research on MRI scans of 20 people with the bipolar disorder and an equal number in a control group. Over time everyone’s brain showed a loss of brain tissue, but… Read More

PTSD may be helped by ‘memory’ enzyme

Most current theories of how we form long-term memories is that they are encoded in our brain by changes in the connections between neurons, which would not allow them to be erased chemically. Recent research contradicts that theory by suggesting the enzyme PKMzeta, may actually be required to sustain memories. By targeting, new therapies could… Read More


I’m early forties and had both knees replaced almost a year and a half ago. I’ve had problems with my knees and arthritis for all of my adult years and also have vitiligo which is a mentally devastating skin disorder, I have been an industrial electrician since I was old enough to start working, and… Read More

Is Alzheimer’s disease a question of genes?

Alzheimer’s disease researchers see the search for the gene responsible for the disease akin to the quest for the Holy Grail. Shirley E. Poduslo, PhD, neuroscientist, Medical College of Georgia Schools of Medicine and Graduate Studies, studied the genetic profile of 2 large Georgia families with high rates of late-onset Alzheimer’s disease. Poduslo was shocked when… Read More

PTSD and substance-abuse disorder

Researchers knew that there was a connection between post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and substance-use disorder (SUD). Also, researchers already knew that a patient with PTSD is at risk for developing a SUD–in particular drug dependence. What researchers were uncertain of is if PTSD patients were more likely to be at a greater risk for… Read More

Benefits of antidepressants in later stage of Alzheimer’s

A common misconception is that Alzheimer’s patients are placed in a nursing home because their memory has failed. Actually, what is more disturbing and precedes placement in a nursing home are the periods of agitation and psychotic symptoms (hallucinations, delusions, suspicious thoughts) often experienced in the later stages of Alzheimer’s disease. Traditional thinking is that psychotic… Read More

California Health Incentives Improvement Project

California, in an effort to assist its disabled residents to improve their situation, created the California Health Incentives Improvement Project (CHIIP). Its goal is to improve self-sufficiency and employment of the disabled. In particular, it wants to improve health care and eliminate personal assistance barriers. In the not too distant past disabled people who wanted… Read More

Painkiller abuse less than 3% in chronic pain patients

Strict government oversite of opioid medications force physicians to balance the needs of their patients with demands from the government for better control of opioid medications. Fifty years ago cancer patients were denied opioids for their pain because of possible addiction. Srinivasa Raja, MD, professor of anesthesiology, Johns Hopkins University Medical School, reports that less than… Read More

Inflammation may play role in Alzheimer’s

A team of researchers at the University of Rochester are exploring the role inflammation plays in Alzheimer’s disease. Like Rheumatoid Arthritis, which causes inflammation and irreparable damage to joints, it appears that there is also an inflammatory mechanism involved in patients with Alzheimer’s disease that is just as destructive. The inflammation that appears in the brains… Read More

Fibromyalgia fact sheet from the American College of Rheumatology

If you think that you or a friend may have fibromyalgia it is important to get a medical professional’s diagnosis. The American College of Rheumatology has a web site that provides information and answers questions frequently asked about fibromyalgia. A valuable resouce for those just beginning to understand that they may have fibromyalgia… Read More

The chronic fatigue syndrome gut link

Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) patients fall into the group of diseases that doctors debate are imagined in the patient’s mind or something that is biological in nature. The debate stirs because there is not a definitive test, like a blood test, to show that chronic fatigue syndrome exists. Common among chronic fatigue syndrome patients is intermittent or persistent… Read More