The filmmaker behind a new documentary on vaccines and exposure to mercury will be in East Lansing this week to talk about his project. Eric Gladen's movie is called “Trace Amounts: Autism, Mercury, and the Hidden Truth.” He points to the use of a preservative containing mercury called thimerisol in vaccines as being the reason for the growth in cases of autism and other conditions.
Workers Memorial Day was last week in the U.S. If you’ve never heard of the observance, it’s something labor unions worldwide conceived to raise consciousness about fatalities on the job. This week, there’s news of a Detroit man crushed to death in a stamping plant accident. There are about 5,000 workplace deaths around the country each year, and Michigan State University has a role in keeping track of those that occur in Michigan.
For a while now, medical professionals have thought there was a connection between abdominal fat and high blood pressure. Turns out, that belly fat may be more or less talking to the body’s blood vessels. The National Institutes of Health has given a grant to some MSU researchers who want to listen in on what that conversation might be.
Medicaid benefits used to be available mostly to low-income children, pregnant women, and disabled adults in Michigan. But that changed in 2013 when Michigan voted to use federal funds from the Affordable Care Act to extend those benefits to more people. Gov. Rick Snyder was a major force behind the legislation, saying it would mean lower healthcare costs and more federal dollars for Michigan. Healthy Michigan, the state’s expanded Medicaid program, has enrolled nearly 600,000 people to date. But the future of the program depends on the Department of Health and Human Services getting a waiver from the federal government.
The Lansing Community College “One Book One LCC” initiative this year has focused on a community read of “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks”, and it concludes Tuesday night with a chance to hear from two of her grandchildren. Lacks died in 1951, and cells from her tumor, taken for research without her consent, have led to ethical debates. Jeri Lacks Whye and David Lacks Jr. will be at LCC on Tuesday.
For years now, Michigan has struggled with how to implement its medical marijuana law. Voters approved legalized pot in 2008, but applying the law has been fraught with complications. Patients, caregivers, physicians, law enforcement, local and state governments and the courts all have had different concerns. The challenge boils down to how to regulate the drug and how to get it safely and responsibly to the people who are entitled to it. In recent years, Republican State Rep. Mike Callton has been in the middle of the state legislature’s effort to move forward.
Since 2009, Michigan officials have been ramping up an effort to address the health consequences of climate change. For example, health experts anticipate greater respiratory challenges like asthma as warmer temperatures intensify smog and fuel more wildfires that emit soot. The Michigan Climate & Health Adaptation Program, MI-CHAP, is participating in a joint effort with the national Centers for Disease Control to create what it calls "climate-ready states and cities."
Millions of people have signed up for insurance under the Affordable Care Act. Will there be enough doctors for the influx of new patients? One solution to a potential doctor shortage is to give nurses with advanced training more autonomy. That’s what a bill currently in the State Senate would do. It would allow advanced practice registered nurses, or APRN's, to prescribe medication and play a more prominent role in health care.
A new study from the University of Michigan indicates that there may be something to those fast food cravings you get. The findings indicate that highly processed foods heavy in fat, salt, and sugar are among the most addictive foods out there.
When you need to stock up on milk or fresh fruits and vegetables for the week, you probably just drive a couple miles to the nearest Kroger or Meijer. Or maybe you take a trip to your local farmers market and load up your trunk with groceries. But for 1.8-million Michiganders, it isn’t quite so easy to find healthy food. That’s the number of people living in so called “food deserts”, according to a new report from the Philadelphia based organization The Food Trust.
A Michigan State University doctoral student in neuroscience has written a book about sexual assault and how post traumatic stress disorder affects women. Apryl Pooley is the author of “Shadow Brain: A Neuroscientist’s Journey Through PTSD and Womanhood”.
Documentary filmmaker Ken Burns is back with his latest production. “Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies” is described as the most comprehensive documentary ever made about a single disease. It airs in three installments on WKAR-TV next Monday through Wednesday nights. This Thursday evening, WKAR is hosting an abbreviated look at the film. The gathering will also include presentations from local health professionals who’ll offer various perspectives on the disease.
In Michigan, there are 191 areas designated as having a mental health care health professional shortage. Only and Texas and California have higher numbers of shortages, and that has devastating consequences. New research from the Child Health Institute found that young people in rural areas are twice as likely to commit suicide than their urban peers. In two northern Michigan counties, state and local officials are trying to hard to improve mental health care access for its rural residents.
The first documented case of Alzheimer’s disease was recorded in 1906. Since then, scientists have struggled to understand the cause of this neurological disorder that robs the mind of normal behavior. A Michigan State University chemist believes a natural compound from a well-known medicinal plant may one day be used to treat Alzheimer’s. He’s patented that compound in the hopes of starting human clinical trials.
Earlier this week, Chris Borland, a top rookie in the National Football League last season and a San Francisco 49ers linebacker, made a rather surprising decision. After one year in the pros, he decided to step away from the sport and call it quits. His explanation was concern about the long-term effects of trauma to the head and the reality of concussions.
March is colorectal cancer awareness month. Health professionals will tell you that kind of cancer can be treated quite successfully, but first it has to be detected. And to be detected, people have to know to get screened for it. That’s why this Saturday you may notice a giant inflatable colon at Briarwood Mall in Ann Arbor.
Once again, the future of Obamacare is in the hands of the United States Supreme Court. This summer, the court’s interpretation of four words in the Affordable Care Act will have a significant impact on the future of the law. Many Americans are counting on millions of dollars of Obamacare federal tax credits to pay for health insurance coverage. The high court’s ruling will determine whether those credits will be offered or withdrawn to residents of 34 states, including Michigan.
Hector Moreno (center) instructs Lansing-area assessors on the types of environmental and health hazards they may encounter in their work in the Green and Healthy Homes Initiative. Moreno is an environmental assessor with the national GHHI office in Baltimore, Maryland.
Anyone who’s ever bought or lived in an older home knows there is always something to fix. In an ideal situation, it’s a patch here, some paint there, but older homes are sometimes plagued with environmental problems that can threaten the health of their occupants. These issues run the gamut from lead paint chips to mold to leaky stoves and furnaces. A new program in Lansing is now training assessors to not only document those defects, but to help improve residents’ health.
Blood clots have been in the news lately, as Michigan Governor Rick Snyder recovers from one in his leg. The governor was hospitalized for treatment, but what if clots were better treated at home? A new MSU study will look at home versus hospital care.
Current State’s Melissa Benmark speaks with Dr. Paul Stein, a professor of osteopathic medical specialties in MSU's College of Osteopathic Medicine, who is one of the study’s leaders.
After the disease was declared ‘eliminated’ in the United States in 2000, measles is back. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control say there were 644 diagnosed cases of the disease in 2014. That's more than in any year since 2000. So far this year, the number is at least 107, after five infants at a Chicago area day care center were diagnosed late last week.
A new report from reproductive rights advocates says Michigan is doing poorly when it comes to protecting the health of women and children in the state. The study compared outcomes for women and children against abortion restrictions in every state. And they say that the states with the most abortion restrictions tend to score the lowest on health and well-being.
In 1973, a chemical plant in the small town of St. Louis, Michigan made a catastrophic mistake. Batches of polybrominated biphenyl, or PBB, were mis-labeled as a nutritional supplement. The chemical was then shipped to farms around the state to be mixed into animal feed. When the mix up was discovered a year later, hundreds of farms were quarantined. Thousands of animals were slaughtered.
Last October, hockey legend Gordie Howe suffered a severe stroke. His family feared for the worst and assumed they only had a couple of months left with him. But after a trip to Mexico for an injection of stem cells into his spine, Howe has made a remarkable recovery. His son Murray told M-Live that the 86-year-old is now playing driveway hockey with his great grandkids again.
Last week, Current State host Mark Bashore had a chance to witness and participate in a very interesting group exercise. It was his first encounter with guided imagery, a technique that tries to direct and focus the imagination using rich, descriptive sound cues.
Before you register your kid in a public school, you have to show proof they’ve been vaccinated against diseases like measles and whooping cough. But parents can get vaccination waivers for medical, religious, or philosophical reasons, and an increasing number of Michigan parents are doing just that. Public health officials say that means preventable, but highly contagious, diseases are making a comeback.
The medical challenges associated with stroke have been in the news lately with hockey great Gordie Howe suffering both strong and mild strokes over the past few months. A new MSU study aims to improve the recovery of stroke victims.
It’s been 30 years since scientists discovered HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. At the height of the American AIDS epidemic in the 1980's and early 1990's, an HIV positive diagnosis was essentially a death sentence. Today, advances in treatment have greatly improved outcomes for people living with HIV, but the pandemic is far from over. We still have around 800 new infections every year in Michigan alone.
From pumpkin pie and mashed potatoes to eggnog and Christmas cookies, the holiday season is filled with delicious food, but it isn’t exactly great for our waistlines. The holiday excess might already have you thinking about that New Year’s diet. Dr. Dave Tschirley thinks about diets all the time, but not for himself. He’s with the Food Security Group in MSU's Department of Agricultural, Food and Resource Economics. They’re studying how the diets of people in Africa are changing dramatically as the continent becomes more urbanized.