Cathryn Jakobson Ramin, author of the book “Crooked,” says chronic low back pain is not a medical condition. Nonetheless, that complaint sends millions of Americans down a path of expensive imaging tests, ongoing therapies and invasive surgery — all with limited effectiveness for many patients. In a conversation with “An Arm and a Leg” podcast host Dan Weissmann, Ramin shares her journey of back pain and recovery.
Nearly a decade ago, Dr. Jeffrey Brenner and his Camden Coalition appeared to have an answer to remake American health care: Treat the sickest and most expensive patients. But a rigorous study in the New England Journal of Medicine shows the approach doesn’t save money. “We built a brilliant intervention to navigate people to nowhere,” Brenner tells the “Tradeoffs” podcast.
People with sickle cell disease aren’t fueling the opioid crisis, research shows. Yet some ER doctors still treat patients seeking relief for agonizing sickle cell crises as potential addicts.
New thinking about aging spins on how to stay free of chronic illnesses and cognitive decline later in life.
The aptly named Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly provides services funded by Medicaid and Medicare that range from medical and mental health care to hot lunches, recreation, transportation and haircuts. California’s newest PACE center opened recently in San Diego County.
After the state legalized recreational marijuana in 2016, new taxes and regulations decimated an ad hoc network that had donated cannabis for medical purposes to patients who could not afford it. A recent law seeks to revive the network, but hurdles remain.
A Navy veteran from Cleveland tried vaping marijuana to deal with his chronic pain. He landed in the hospital, becoming one of over 2,400 Americans who have suffered serious lung injury from vaping.
A standard connector for feeding tubes was supposed to improve patient safety by preventing accidental misconnections to equipment used for IVs or other purposes. But critics say the design instead could keep patients from real food and inadvertently creates a host of new risks, including for vulnerable premature infants.
Family caregivers pledge to fulfill their loved ones’ end-of-life wishes. But too often circumstances change, and they must break their word and guard against breaking hearts ― including their own.
After surviving two double lung transplants, Dylan Mortimer, a Kansas City artist, turns his battle with cystic fibrosis into joyous, whimsical art. Now Mortimer buys glitter by the pound and uses it to create mixed-media collages and sculptures for hospitals, private collectors and public spaces.