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Dr. Zorba Paster: Dementia is down but docs don’t know why

Mon., Sept. 4, 2017

The most recent data from the Journal of the American Medical Association’s Internal Medicine publication shows that despite the increase in obesity and the explosion of diabetes in the United States, dementia in Americans has dropped by a whopping 24 percent over the last 12 years.

Study suggests opioid-addicted zebrafish could be key to finding new human treatment

Mon., Sept. 4, 2017

Researchers are using zebrafish to study opioid addiction and treatment. (Steven Senne / Associated Press)
As the opioid epidemic sweeps through America, scientists are scrambling to understand its addictive power in hopes of developing new treatment methods. In the process, they discovered that zebrafish can become opioid addicts. Researchers at the University of Utah hope their study of the addicted fish could be helpful in creating new treatments for humans.

House Call: Dealing with smoke season

Mon., Aug. 21, 2017, 5:30 p.m.

Even if you don’t have heart or lung disease, you should still be careful on days of poor air quality. Although children, pregnant women, and elderly are also especially vulnerable to the effects of smoke exposure, the following advice applies to all of us.

Ride to Care expands into Spokane Valley

Mon., Aug. 21, 2017

A pilot program for medical transportation recently expanded to Spokane Valley. The Ride to Care program through SNAP was launched in January, then only within the city of Spokane, in conjunction with health care providers, insurance companies and philanthropic organizations.

Amid India oxygen scandal, docs want focus on encephalitis

Fri., Aug. 18, 2017, 12:22 p.m.

In this Aug. 13, 2017, file photo, a relative attends to a child receiving treatment at the state-run Baba Raghav Das Medical College Hospital in Gorakhpur, Uttar Pradesh, India. Acute encephalitis syndrome is a catch-all term to describe patients suffering fever, vomiting, headaches and brain function issues such as confusion, trouble speaking and coma along with seizures. (Rajesh Kumar Singh / Associated Press)
Dozens of children died last week in a decrepit government hospital in northeastern India, prompting public outcry over whether an oxygen shortage was to blame. Answers remain unclear, but doctors who have spent decades treating sick kids in the area say the incident is a symptom of a greater problem: Chronic mismanagement, corruption and outright negligence are worsening encephalitis outbreaks that sicken thousands of children every year.

Plans call for lodging center at Kootenai Health

Mon., Aug. 14, 2017, 5:03 p.m.

A tour guide leads a group past the expanded neonatal intensive care unit in Kootenai Health’s east during a tour of the new wing of the hospital in Coeur d’Alene on  Feb. 25, 2016. The expansion of neonatal intensive care services at Kootenai has sparked plans for a Ronald McDonald House facility in Coeur d’Alene. (Kathy Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)
Growth at Kootenai Health is backing plans to build a lodging center on the hospital campus, with one side of the facility as a Ronald McDonald House, for use by patients and families.

Plant-based diet? Sure, but first understand what it means

Mon., Aug. 14, 2017, 5 p.m.

A recent study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology seems to agree. It found that when it comes to the plants you eat, quality does count – and omnivores have a place at the plant-based table, too. (bopav / Getty Images/iStockphoto)
The concept of eating a “plant-based” diet is tossed around frequently, but it’s a label that can be confusing. Some people shy away from the notion because they assume that plant-based is code for vegan. On the other hand, it’s easy to think that eating all plants and no animals guarantees that your diet is healthful and nutritious. But does it?

House Call: Vaccinations are a back-to-school essential

Mon., Aug. 14, 2017

These days in addition to doing a lot of sports physicals for students wishing to join a team at school, I am doing wellness checkups and immunizations. Vaccines are more than just a requirement in the state of Washington for attending school, they are a health and safety essential.

Got allergies? Seattle discovery could improve treatment … and possibly lead to cure

Mon., Aug. 7, 2017, 5 p.m.

Erik Wambre, center, molecular biologist and head of the Wambre Lab at the Benaroya Research Institute, with colleagues in his lab last week in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood. (Kjell Redal / Photos by Kjell Redal/Seattle Times)
Led by researchers at Virginia Mason’s Benaroya Research Institute, the Seattle team is the first to find a way to distinguish the “bad” immune-system cells that trigger allergies from “good” immune cells that fight infection. They also showed that effective allergy therapy banishes the bad cells from the body.

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