Personal Health

Vt. Might Owe $2.7 Million More for Health Exchange

Friday, July 31, 2015

Montpelier — The Shumlin administration’s push to meet a key Vermont Health Connect milestone deadline eight weeks ago could leave the state on the hook for another $2.7 million it didn’t expect to pay. The Joint Fiscal Office wrote in a July 24 memo that Vermont won’t be able to rely on between $862,000 and $2.7 million in federal funding for expenses that Vermont Health Connect incurred this spring while …

Uneven Efforts, Part Four: Mental Health Care: ‘A Very Difficult System to Navigate’

Monday, July 27, 2015

When serious mental illness occurs, finding care and making choices can be daunting. Families of the mentally ill frequently find themselves the first responders to health emergencies. And they may be unprepared. “When you have a child or a sister or a brother or an aunt or an uncle who starts displaying weird …

Uneven Efforts Series: Flagship Hospitals Continue to Have a Role to Play

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Most experts and advocates agree that the quality and availability of care depend, to a large degree, on a state’s ability to deliver services in a variety of community settings and facilities while reducing reliance on flagship, state-owned mental hospitals. Yet those hospitals — which provide high-level, expensive, inpatient treatment for acute cases …

To Your Good Health: The Causes of Vocal Changes Are Many and Varied

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Dear Dr. Roach: Over the past year, my voice has become hoarse or raspy. I find that I often have to clear my throat while speaking. I’ve had a stomach endoscopy and a colonoscopy done, the results of which were noted as “normal.” Nothing has changed in my …

To Your Good Health: Yoga Has Many Benefits, in All Its Many Forms

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Dear Dr. Roach: I am 60 years old, with high blood pressure and history of TIA. I stopped smoking five years ago and gained 50 pounds. I eat healthy and am on the treadmill 30 minutes five times per week. I am fairly active otherwise, but am not …

Washington Hospital Performs Two Unusual Liver Transplants

Sunday, April 5, 2015

When two Maryland children got lifesaving liver transplants from deceased organ donors in January, the children’s diseased livers were not discarded, as such organs usually are. Instead, they were donated to two Virginia adults in an unusual domino series of transplants at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital in Washington. …

To Your Good Health: Increase in Prescription Price Can Be Hardship

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Dear Dr. Roach: I had a partial thyroidectomy over 40 years ago due to an enlarged thyroid, which was benign. I have been on varying amounts of thyroid hormone replacement ever since — initially Armour, then Synthroid, and now levothyroxine 88 mcg. Until recently, the cost of levothyroxine …

Offering Answers About COPD

Monday, March 23, 2015

COPD, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, affects some 24 million Americans, and is the third leading cause of death in the U.S. after heart disease and cancer, according to the American Lung Association. Over his 35-year career, Donald …

To Your Good Health: Source of Low Iron Must Be Investigated

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Dear Dr. Roach: I am a healthy, energetic 63-year-old woman who has had elevated RDW levels for the past few years. My doctor and I looked into this, and did a ferritin panel. Although my B-12, folic acid, hemoglobin and hematocrit are normal, my transferrin saturation is low, …

To Your Good Health: In an Emergency, Accurate Communication Is Key

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Dear Dr. Roach: At 62, I was recently diagnosed with central diabetes insipidus, and I am awaiting my first appointment with an endocrinologist to determine what might have caused it, and also to get started on the medication desmopressin. In a few articles I have read about this …

Choices My Mom Never Had

Friday, March 13, 2015

A few weeks after my surgeries, I often heard the comment from friends and family: “You must be so relieved now that it’s over.” Each time, I paused, because the question implies a clear line between before and …

To Your Good Health: High Calcium and PTH Numbers May Indicate Parathyroid Tumo

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Dear Dr. Roach: I am a 56-year-old female. I had some blood work done recently, and two numbers came back high: My ionized calcium level was 6.0, and my PTH Intact level was 136.6. I am relatively active and feel good. Any thoughts? — L.K. Answer: Ionized calcium …

Officials: Continue Vaccines

Sunday, March 8, 2015

New York — Certain that they are right, struggling to find ways to get their message across, public health officials are exasperated by their inability to persuade more U.S. parents to vaccinate their children. “I think we’re all …