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November 25th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

National Family History Day: Why Your Family Medical History is Important

By DebBalzer DebBalzer

multi generational African American family sitting on a couch

Do you know what health conditions run in your family? Take advantage of upcoming holiday gatherings to find out. Having access to this vital information may reveal the history of disease in your family and allow you to identify patterns that might be relevant to your own health. To encourage families to talk and write down their medical history, the U.S. Surgeon General's office has declared Thanksgiving National Family History Day — a time to discuss  and share information about family medical issues that may be common, such heart disease, cancer and diabetes — or less common, such as hemophilia, cystic fibrosis and sickle cell anemia.

"Knowing your family history can help your health care provider determine if you are at an increased risk for any conditions that may warrant additional testing or screening," says Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine genetic counselor supervisor Teresa Kruisselbrink.

Create Your Family Medical Treeillustration of family medical tree
Family history should be gathered for three or four generations on both sides. Include information about your children, siblings, parents, aunts, uncles and grandparents. Helpful information to gather includes:

  • Major medical conditions and the age they started
  • Cause and age of death
  • Birth defects
  • Family’s ethnic background — some conditions can be more prevalent in certain ethnicities.

To help you get started, the U.S. Surgeon General's office has designed a free online tool called My Family Health Portrait.

"The tool allows you to collect the information and create a family pedigree that can be printed and shared with your family and health care provider. Remember to ask about any updates. Thanksgiving is a great time to do this," she adds. This information can help improve the health of your family for generations to come.

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Tags: Cancer, center for individualized medicine, cystic fibrosis, diabetes, Genetic Counseling, Heart Disease, hemophilia, medical history, sickle cell anemia, Teresa Kruisselbrink, U.S. Surgeon General, #Newsapp

November 24th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Superbug Gene Outsmarts “Antibiotic of Last Resort”

By Jeff_Olsen Jeff_Olsen

illustration of bacteria mutating into superbugs
A new gene that makes bacteria highly resistant to a last-resort class of antibiotics has been identified in China, and doctors are warning of the global implications.

“These genes could result in infections that are very difficult to treat in humans,” explains Dr. Ritu Banerjee, a Mayo Clinic pediatric infectious diseases expert.

The gene, called MCR-1, makes bacteria resistant to a class of antibiotics known as polymyxins, which are antibiotics of last resort, used to fight superbugs. The discovery is described as "alarming" by scientists quoted in a Reuters article. They call for urgent restrictions on the use of polymyxins, a class of antibiotics that includes the drug colistin, widely used in livestock farming.

“Our findings emphasize the urgent need for coordinated global action,” researchers said in a published summary of their research.

Dr. Banerjee agrees. “The fact that it has just been found in China doesn’t mean that we are safe from that here. International travel and global food supply networks mean that resistant bacteria anywhere in the world can be spread to the United States.”

An expert at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, quoted on the website STAT, says if the resistance spreads, it will seriously limit the treatment options available to doctors facing antibiotic-resistant infections.

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Tags: #Newsapp, antibiotic resistance, antibiotic resistant bacteria, Dr Ritu Banerjee, mcr-1, superbugs

November 24th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Preventing Hockey Injuries

By ddouda ddouda

hockey player falling on the ice
From peewees to the pros, and every level in between, hockey season is in full swing. Although hockey's often considered a risky sport for injuries, Mayo Clinic Sports Medicine experts say smart precautions and top-notch training can lower the odds of getting hurt — while also greatly improving a player’s skills. Here’s Dennis Douda for the Mayo Clinic News Network.

Journalists: The broadcast quality package is available in the downloads. Click here to read the script. 

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Tags: #Newsapp, Athletes Performance, Dr. Michael Stuart, EXOS, HL, hockey, Joe Eischen, Pkg, Shawn Vinz, sports medicine

November 24th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic Minute: Diagnosing Lupus, Heart-Healthy Cranberries

By DebBalzer DebBalzer

glass of cranberry juice and a bowl of cranberries
Watch today's Mayo Clinic Minute

  • In today's Mayo Clinic Minute, we look at cranberries – they're not just for Thanksgiving! Research shows drinking cranberry juice is good for heart health. Plus, why lupus can be difficult to diagnose. Reporter Vivien Williams has more.

Journalists: Video is available in the downloads. [TRT 1:04] Click here for the script.

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Tags: #Newsapp, cranberries, Cranberry Juice, Heart Health, Lupus, Mayo Clinic Minute, Vivien Williams

November 24th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic PathWays November 24: What’s the Diagnosis?

By apriljosselyn apriljosselyn

Mayo Medical Labs Pathways bannner

This week's Mayo Clinic PathWays case study is LIVE
View the case and make your diagnosis.

Learn more about Mayo Clinic PathWays in this news release.

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Tags: Mayo Clinic PathWays, Mayo Medical Laboratories, pathology

November 24th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Talking Turkey: From the Grocery Store To the Table

By danasparks danasparks

roasted turkey on platter

Former Mayo Clinic chef Richard Johnson shares his expertise and demonstrates how to take a turkey from the grocery store to the table, including how to properly select, thaw, prepare, roast and serve a turkey. The above video is an overview and the links below take you to specific turkey tips:

Journalists: All tip segments are in broadcast quality video and are available to download for re-purposing on your various platforms.

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Tags: carving a turkey, Chef Richard Johnson, holiday meals, Nutrition, roasting a turkey, salmonella, Thanksgiving turkey, thawing a turkey, #Newsapp

November 24th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic Q and A: Rate of progression of Parkinson’s disease hard to predict

By lizatorborg lizatorborg

medical illustration showing hand tremor due to Parkinson's Disease
My father is 64 and was diagnosed with Parkinson’s last year. So far his symptoms are very mild, but I’m wondering what the typical progression of the disease is like. I have read that deep brain stimulation is sometimes recommended. When is this type of treatment usually considered? Is it safe?

ANSWER: The symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, or PD, tend to begin very gradually and then become progressively more severe. The rate of progression is hard to predict and is different from one person to another. Treatment for PD includes a variety of options, such as exercise, medication and surgery. Deep brain stimulation is one surgical possibility for treating PD, but it’s usually only considered in advanced cases when other treatments don’t effectively control symptoms. Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: #Newsapp, atypical parkinsonism, Deep Brain Stimulation, Dr Ryan Uitti, Dr Uitti, Mayo Clinic Q A, Parkinson's disease, PD

November 24th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Laura’s Breathing Easy After Pulmonary Hypertension Surgery

By cindyweiss cindyweiss

In her down time, Laura Floeckhler, 45, enjoyed visiting the theme parks in her hometown of Orlando, Fla. But last year she started getting short of breathe and her legs began to swell. Walking was painful. She bought a cooler and kept it by her bed to avoid having to leave her bedroom. On Christmas night 2014, Laura was taken by ambulance to her local hospital, where she was diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension, a rare disorder of the lungs affecting about 30 in every 1 million people.

November is Pulmonary Hypertension Awareness Month. Mayo Clinic in Florida is one of 26 designated Pulmonary Hypertension and Vascular Disease Centers in the country, recognized based on patient volumes, comprehensive care, family support and research initiatives.

Thanks to a complex surgery known as pulmonary thromboendarterectomy, Laura is now breathing easier and looking forward to adventures with her first grandchild.

Learn more about pulmonary hypertension awareness

JOURNALISTS:  For an interview with Laura or her physicians, please contact Cynthia Weiss, Mayo Clinic Public Affairs at or 507-284-5005.

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Tags: Laura Floeckhler, Mayo Clinic Florida, pulmonary hypertension, pulmonary thromboendarterectomy, vascular disease, Charles Burger, Kevin Landolfo, MayoClinicFL

November 24th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Pulmonary Hypertension Awareness

By cindyweiss cindyweiss

Pulmonary hypertension is a disorder of the lungs that affects the way blood is pumped and circulated.

November is Pulmonary Hypertension Awareness Month. About 20,000 people in the United States are being treated for pulmonary hypertension (PH).

Mayo Clinic in Florida is one of 26 designated Pulmonary Hypertension and Vascular Disease Centers in the country, recognized based on patient volumes, comprehensive care, family support and research initiatives.

Pulmonologist Dr. Charles Burger, who directs the Florida clinical program, likens PH to “a kink that develops in a water hose." And like a kinked hose, pressure builds up, he says, forcing the right side of the heart to work harder to increase blood flow to the lungs. Eventually, the heart enlarges and fails.

“There are five different categories of pulmonary hypertension, so this can be a very difficult disease to diagnose and treat,” says Dr. Burger. Some patients require a heart transplant or a heart and lung transplant.

There is no cure for pulmonary hypertension, although a small percentage of patients who are diagnosed with a sub-type of PH that causes blood clots in the lungs are essentially healed if they undergo a complex surgery known as pulmonary thromboendarterectomy. Mayo Clinic in Florida is the only center in the south offering this procedure.

WATCH Laura's Story: Breathing Easy After Pulmonary Hypertension Surgery

JOURNALISTS: Animation and sound bites are available in the downloads. For interviews, please contact Cynthia Weiss, Mayo Clinic Public Affairs, at or 507-284-5005.



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Tags: Dr Charles Burger, Dr Kevin Landolfo, Laura Floeckhler, pulmonary hypertension, thromboendarterectomy, #Newsapp, Mayo Clinic in Florida

November 24th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mandarin Oriental, Bodrum and Mayo Clinic To Introduce Healthy Living Wellness Program

By briankilen briankilen

healthy living word cloud on chalkboard
Mayo Clinic and Mandarin Oriental, Bodrum will introduce a new program reflecting a joint commitment to wellness, the Mayo Clinic Healthy Living Programme at Mandarin Oriental, Bodrum will combine the research-based medical expertise of Mayo Clinic with Mandarin Oriental’s signature treatments and therapies, offered in its award-winning, expansive Spa. This collaboration is the first of its kind for the clinic.

Launching in January 2016 with a focus on preventive wellness and designed to inspire a more balanced lifestyle, the wellness program will offer guests a choice of tailor-made experiences from one day assessments to five day retreats, as well as a la carte services. Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: Dr Paul Limburg, GBS, Mandarin Oriental, Mayo Clinic Health Living, Minnesota news release, News Release

November 23rd, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic Minute: Pediatricians Call for End to Antibiotics Overuse in Animals

By Jeff_Olsen Jeff_Olsen

cows in a corral, bovine, antibiotic resistance
Watch today's Mayo Clinic Minute

  • The American Academy of Pediatrics says the overuse of antibiotics to speed growth in animals is a creating a significant public health threat. In a new report, the group warns the drug-resistant bacteria showing up in the food supply is endangering medicine's ability to treat young patients. Jeff Olsen has more in this Mayo Clinic Minute.

Journalists: Video is available in the downloads. [TRT 1:06] Download the script.

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Tags: #Newsapp, american academy of pediatrics, antibiotics and animals, Dr Ritu Banerjee, Jeff Olsen

November 23rd, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic Leads Global Effort to Standardize Diagnosis of Kidney Disease

By gplumbo gplumbo

medical illustration for normal kidney and diseased kidney
Consensus report expected to lead to more effective, patient-centered diagnosis and treatment

Rochester, Minn. — Kidney disease is a major health concern worldwide. It’s estimated that 1 in 3 American adults are at risk of developing kidney disease, and 26 million adults already have kidney disease. Many are undiagnosed. Because kidney disease can go undetected until it’s too late, effective and consistent diagnosis is essential. Physicians on Mayo Clinic’s Rochester, Minn., campus – one of the world’s leading kidney disease centers – are at the forefront of an effort to standardize the diagnosis of kidney disease.

In a paper published in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (JASN), Mayo Clinic researchers provide a detailed recommendation for standardizing the diagnosis of glomerulonephritis. This is a term used to describe various conditions involving inflammation of the glomeruli, which is the basic filtering unit in the kidneys. Inflammation prevents the kidneys from properly filtering toxins out of the blood and regulating fluid levels in the body, and, ultimately, can lead to permanent damage to the kidneys and potential kidney failure.

MEDIA CONTACT: Ginger Plumbo, Mayo Clinic Public Affairs, 507-284-5005, Email: Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: Fernando Fervenza, Minnesota news release, Nephrology, News Release, Sanjeev Sethi

November 23rd, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic Featured on National Geographic “Breakthrough” Series

By bobnellis bobnellis

“The universal fascination and anxiety that we all feel around this subject is what gives it its power.” - Ron Howard, director of Breakthrough - The Age of Aging


How to age but keep your health? Can science reverse aging? Those are just two of the questions Oscar-winning director Ron Howard will investigate when he hosts the documentary series Breakthrough on the National Geographic channel on Sunday November 29, 9 pm EST/8 pm CST. The segment focuses on Mayo Clinic’s Kogod Center on Aging and features gerontology researcher James Kirkland, M.D., Ph.D.

The production team spent a week on Mayo’s Rochester, Minnesota campus last spring, interviewing researchers, physicians and residents of retirement communities about optimal ways to make the most out of one’s later years. Expect to hear about possible aging interventions at the cellular level and what that may mean for lifespan and “healthspan.”

Download and view a segment of the program on Mayo research.

Aging is the leading risk factor for most chronic diseases, including stroke, heart disease, cancer, dementia, osteoporosis, arthritis, diabetes, metabolic syndrome, blindness and frailty. Research discoveries being made at the Mayo Clinic Kogod Center on Aging suggest that aging may actually be a modifiable risk factor — aging doesn't have to increase the risk of disease and disability.

MEDIA CONTACT: Bob Nellis, Mayo Clinic Public Affairs, 507-284-5005, Email: Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: aging, Edward Kirlin, Kogod Center on Aging, National Geographic, Ron Howard, Dr James Kirkland

November 23rd, 2015 · Leave a Comment

In Case You Missed the Show: #MayoClinicRadio Podcast 11/21/15

By jenohara jenohara

Dr. Jon Ebbert being interviewed on Mayo Clinic Radio

Listen: Mayo Clinic Radio podcast 11-21-15

On Mayo Clinic Radio, Dr. Jon Ebbert, who treats patients at the Mayo Clinic Nicotine Dependence Center, talks about the latest approaches to quitting smoking. Also on the program, keeping a food diary may be the most effective way to avoid unwanted weight gain during the holidays. Psychologist Dr. Karen Grothe explains why. And registered dietitian Katherine Zeratsky has healthful tips for turning traditional holiday fare into dishes that taste good, but that won't break your calorie bank.

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Tags: Mayo Clinic Radio

November 23rd, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Housecall: Healthy Options for Thanksgiving

By jenohara jenohara

cornucopia basket of mixed fruits, harvest, healthy foodTHIS WEEK'S TOP STORIES
Thanksgiving recipes: Delicious and healthy options
Serve up a healthier Thanksgiving this year. These recipes have all the taste of the dishes you love, but with less fat and fewer calories.

If your waist is large and you're not very active, you may be on your way to developing prediabetes. The good news? This can be a chance for you to improve your health.

What are superbugs and how can I protect myself from infection?
Uncover the mystery behind superbugs and find out how to avoid getting an infection that doesn't respond to medicine.

Can certain foods trigger chronic hives?
See which foods may cause flare-ups of chronic hives and how keeping a written log may help.

Helping children cope: Tips for talking about tragedy
Motion sickness: First aid
Fall prevention: Simple tips to prevent falls
Granulomatosis with polyangiitis (GPA): Know the signs

Receive a free e-supscription to Housecall and other health newsletters. Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: butter vs margarine, children coping, chronic hives, Fall prevention, GPA, granulomatosis with polyangiitis, Healthy recipes, Motion Sickness, nutrition-wise blog, Prediabetes, superbugs, Thanksgiving recipes