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Diabetes Tied to Brain Abnormalities

Photo Diabetes may be bad for the brain, especially if you are overweight. Researchers studied 50 overweight and 50 normal weight people in the early stages of Type 2 diabetes. All had been given a diagnosis within the previous five years. They compared both groups with 50 healthy control subjects. The scientists performed M.R.I. examinations of their brains and psychological tests of memory, reaction time and planning. Those with diabetes scored worse than the healthy controls on tests of memory and reaction times. M.R.I. scans revealed significant differences in brain…

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No Bones About It: Scientists Recover Ancient DNA From Cave Dirt

Until recently, the only way to study the genes of ancient humans like the Neanderthals and their cousins, the Denisovans, was to recover DNA from fossil bones. Continue reading the main story But they are scarce and hard to find, which has greatly limited research into where early humans lived and how widely they ranged. The only Denisovan bones and teeth that scientists have, for example, come from a single cave in Siberia. Looking for these genetic signposts in sediment has become possible only in the last few years, with…

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Diagnosis: What Caused This College Student’s Stomach Pain and Vomiting?

These are perhaps the toughest cases that doctors face: A patient comes in critically ill — dying, really — with few clues as to what is going on. The I.C.U. doctors examined the young woman as soon as she arrived but had no better understanding of what was causing her coma. They asked for help from neurology, cardiology and infectious diseases. Those doctors were baffled as well. An M.R.I. revealed that the girl’s brain had swollen and was now pushing up against the unyielding limits of the skull. If the…

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Op-Ed Contributors: How Trump Could Save Obamacare, and Help Himself

Still, the law isn’t perfect. Too many hardworking families struggle to pay their medical bills, deductibles are often too high, and some insurance marketplaces need more competition. Continue reading the main story The original House Republican bill would have made these problems worse. Premiums would have spiked for most families in the individual market (especially for older people), 24 million would have lost coverage, and over $800 billion would have been cut from Medicaid, a program that provides lifesaving help to severely disabled children, the frail elderly and the poor….

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Beer Drinkers May Develop Irregular Heart Rhythms

Photo The Munich Oktoberfest might seem an unlikely locale for a medical research project, but German scientists studied festivalgoers and found that moderate social drinking may lead to arrhythmias — irregular heart rhythms — in otherwise healthy people. Using a hand-held breathalyzer, the researchers tested 3,028 men and women who had been drinking but were not legally impaired. They gave them EKGs to test heart function. More than a quarter of the group had a condition called sinus tachycardia, marked by a resting heart rate of more than 100 beats…

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Diet Sodas Tied to Dementia and Stroke

Photo A new study links diet soft drinks to an increased risk for stroke and dementia. Researchers studied more than 4,000 people over 45 who had filled out food-frequency questionnaires and had periodic health examinations between 1991 and 2001. The scientists tracked their health over the next 10 years and found 97 cases of stroke and 81 cases of dementia. The study, in the journal Stroke, found that compared with those who did not drink diet soda, people who drank one to six artificially sweetened drinks a week had twice…

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Feature: The C.E.O. of H.I.V.

Directors of health care nonprofits are traditionally cautious and courtly, fearful of choking the funding streams that issue from nit-picking grant committees and image-conscious donors. Weinstein, an ex-Trotskyite, is no courtier. He runs his organization as a “social enterprise,” meaning that it generates most of its revenue not from grants and fund-raising but from adjacent businesses. A.H.F.’s main business is a network of pharmacies and clinics that provide primary care to more than 41,000 patients in the United States, most of whom have their insurance claims paid by government insurance…

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Take a Number: Common Nursery Products Send Thousands of Children to Hospitals

Photo Recently released data says that ordinary baby products result in an average of 66,000 injuries a year. Credit Julio Cortez/Associated Press Baby carriers, cribs, strollers, high chairs, changing tables, bath seats — these ordinary nursery products result in an average of 66,000 injuries a year requiring trips to the emergency room for young children. Using data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System, researchers estimate that from 1991 to 2011, there were 1,391,844 injuries among children under 3 that were serious enough to be treated in a hospital. The…

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