Vision loss may lead to hallucinations

By Lighthouse International
Posted on July 09, 2013

People with Charles Bonnet syndrome (CBS) can vouch for the cliché that things aren’t always as they seem. This syndrome, named for the 18th century philosopher who first described it, is characterized by the periodic occurrence of hallucinatory visions.People with CBS may see anything from abstract patterns to birds to babies to white sandy beaches. Sometimes the hallucinations are... READ MORE

A healthy long life? It’s all in our heads

By Douglas Heaven
Posted on July 01, 2013

Hypothalamus may hold keys to aging wellA mechanism that controls aging, counting down to inevitable death, has been identified in the hypothalamus — a part of the brain that controls most of the basic functions of life.By manipulating this mechanism, researchers have both shortened and lengthened the lifespan of mice. The discovery reveals several new drug targets that, if not quite... READ MORE

Forgetfulness can have multiple causes

By Dr. Daniel Pendrick
Posted on May 23, 2013

Worried that you’re getting more forgetful as you age? Ironically, worry itself can trigger memory slips.It might take a conversation with your doctor to pinpoint the cause of your memory lapses — especially if the change is sudden or uncharacteristic.“If it’s worse than it was a few months ago, or somebody is asking you about it, that would definitely be something... READ MORE

Breast cancer radiation may harm hearts

By Marilynn Marchion
Posted on May 16, 2013

Women treated with radiation for breast cancer are more likely to develop heart problems later, even with the lower doses used today, new research suggests. The risk comes from any amount of radiation, starts five years after treatment, and lasts for decades, doctors in the UK found.Patients shouldn’t panic — radiation has improved cancer survival, and that is the top priority,... READ MORE

New tools fix hearts without major surgery

By Marilynn Marchione
Posted on April 30, 2013

Have a heart problem? If it’s fixable, there’s a good chance it can be done without surgery, using tiny tools and devices that are pushed through tubes into blood vessels.Heart care is in the midst of a transformation. Many problems that once required sawing through the breastbone and opening up the chest for open heart surgery now can be treated with a nip, twist or patch... READ MORE

Pessimists may live longer, healthier lives

By American Psychological Association
Posted on April 01, 2013

Older people who have low expectations for a satisfying future may be more likely to live longer, healthier lives than those who see brighter days ahead, according to new research published by the American Psychological Association.“Our findings revealed that being overly optimistic in predicting a better future was associated with a greater risk of disability and death within the... READ MORE

Robotics can help the blind to navigate

By Helen Knight
Posted on January 02, 2013

Technologies that help machines navigate are being adapted to help blind people find their way around.Robots need help navigating their surroundings and use sophisticated location systems to keep track of their position. Now the same technologies are being adapted to help blind people navigate indoor and outdoor spaces independently.One such system, being developed by Edwige Pissaloux and... READ MORE

How your diet affects prostate cancer risk

By Beacon
Posted on December 17, 2012

“It seems nearly all men will develop prostate cancer if they live long enough,” said Karen Collins, a registered dietician and nutrition advisor for the American Institute for Cancer Research. Thus, scientists have been searching for lifestyle measures that can help stack the odds in your favor.Promising research reveals three important diet strategies that can help you mount a ... READ MORE

Aspirin improves colon cancer survival

By Marilynn Marchione
Posted on December 03, 2012

Aspirin, one of the world’s oldest and cheapest drugs, has shown remarkable promise in treating colon cancer in people with mutations in a gene that’s thought to play a role in the disease.Among patients with the mutations, those who regularly took aspirin lived longer than those who didn’t, a major study found. Five years after their cancers were diagnosed, 97 percent of... READ MORE

Families can make hospitals safer places

By Lauran Neergaard
Posted on November 26, 2012

Head of the hospital bed raised? Check. Patient’s teeth brushed? Check.Those simple but often overlooked steps can help protect some of the most critically ill patients — those on ventilators — from developing deadly pneumonia. And if they knew about them, family members could ensure the steps weren’t forgotten.Hospitals are rife with infections and opportunities for ... READ MORE