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September 4th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Researchers Work on One Flu Shot to Cover All Strains

By Dennis Douda Dennis Douda

person getting flu shot in armTwo groups of American researchers recently announced progress in their efforts to create a single flu vaccine. The goal is to find a universal vaccine that will offer broader coverage against all types of influenza each season. It's possible such a vaccine would even provide long-term protection, preparing our immune systems to fight off the flu for many seasons.

The challenge in developing such a vaccine has been the flu virus's ability to mutate quickly. Even slight changes to a virus may interfere with our body's ability to control it before it makes us sick. This newly reported single vaccine research focuses on a protein called hemagglutinin, which all influenza virus strains share in common.

Journalists: Broadcast quality sound bites with Dr. Tosh are available in the downloads. To read a transcript of his quotes, click here.

"There’s a lot of research going on looking at some of these other options, in terms of our target for the influenza vaccine," says Mayo Clinic infectious diseases specialist Pritish Tosh, M.D. Dr. Tosh, who is also a member of the Vaccine Research Group at Mayo Clinic, says the new avenues of investigation are definitely needed. However, he cautions, the single flu vaccine has only been tested in animals and is not yet available. So, he urges everyone to get immunized with the safe and proven vaccines that we already have. "Influenza is real killer. It kills tens of thousands of Americans each year, either directly or through its complications. And we really only have one great way in terms of prevention and that is with [the current] influenza vaccine." Play the video to hear more of Dr. Tosh's comments about different research approaches for improving flu vaccines.

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Tags: Dr Pritish Tosh, infectious diseases, influenza, influenza vaccine, Universal Vaccine

September 4th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Baby Season: Fruits of Labor

By Vivien Williams Vivien Williams

pregnant couple smiling and happy

Labor Day honors our nation's workers, and who works harder than a mom in labor? A Harvard study reports that September is one of the busiest months of the year for baby births, which means many soon-to-be moms are busy preparing for the big day. Contractions and your water breaking are the classic signs that your baby is ready to enter the world, but other indications are less obvious. Mayo Clinic certified nurse midwife Julie Lamppa says the symptoms of labor differ for everybody. "Often women hear that they should go to the hospital or wherever they've chosen to give birth when contractions are every two to three minutes apart. But because labor can be so individual, I suggest women pay attention to contractions that are simply getting consistently stronger and closer together. Women may also have back labor or occasionally GI symptoms, but GI symptoms are less common." She says women in labor should go the hospital any time they feel they are ready, regardless of symptoms, especially if bleeding or decrease in fetal movement occurs.

Read more on the Mayo Clinic Pregnancy and you blog.

Journalists: Sound bites are available in the downloads. [TRT 1:11]  Click here for the transcript.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: contractions, Julie Lamppa, labor, Nurse-Midwife, pregnancy, pregnancy blog

September 4th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Living With Cancer

By Jen O'Hara Jen O

prostate cancer word cloudUnderstanding prostate cancer, one man at a time
By looking at the genetic makeup of individual men with prostate cancer, Mayo Clinic is helping doctors know which drugs may help.

Chemotherapy and hair loss: What to expect during treatment
If you're about to undergo chemotherapy, there's a chance that you may lose your hair. Can you do anything to prevent it?

Anger and cancer: What to do with the difficult emotions
Anger is a normal emotion to experience as you're dealing with the diagnosis, treatment and life after treatment. Cancer is a big interruption in life — an unexpected and unwelcome interruption for everyone.

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Tags: anger and cancer, chemotherapy and hair loss, Living With Cancer Blog, Prostate Cancer

September 3rd, 2015 · Leave a Comment

#ThrowbackThursday: Hematology Laboratory’s New ‘Counter’ Cuts Routine Test Time

By Dana Sparks Dana Sparks

Throwback Thursday photo - 1971 Hematology Lab

Mayo Clinic Hematology Lab 1971

This article first appeared Feb. 19, 1971 in the publication Mayovox.

The Routine Hematology Laboratory last week put into service a new instrument—the Coulter Model S—which automatically determines red and white cell counts, hemoglobin, hematocrit, mean cell volume, mean cell hemoglobin and mean cell hemoglobin concentration.

All seven determinations are made on a single 1.3 ml. blood sample and the results are automatically imprinted on a form which is attached to the patient’s chart. A carbon copy of the report is also made which is retained in the laboratory. Samples may be introduced into the instrument at the rate of two to three per minute.

Automation is not new to the Hematology Laboratory. Use of earlier model Coulter Counters for red and white blood cell count was started about ten years ago and represented a vast improvement over the procedure by which a technician literally counted the number of cells visualized through a microscope. However, to secure all of the results obtained in less than a minute with the Model S required approximately 8 minutes with the earlier automatic methods. Read the rest of this entry »

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September 3rd, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic Radio

By Jen O'Hara Jen O

medical illustration depicting bacteria and the human microbiome

Ecosystems usually refer to places on the earth, like forests or deserts. But our bodies have ecosystems, too. Collectively called the "human microbiome," these communities of organisms help keep us healthy. On the next Mayo Clinic Radio, gastroenterologist Dr. Purna Kashyap discusses how the human microbiome works. Also on the program, infectious disease specialist Dr. Pritish Tosh explains when it might be OK to stop taking an antibiotic early. Stool transplantation is being used to treat serious digestive diseases, and gastroenterologist Dr. Sahil Khanna describes how this new treatment works. And physical medicine and rehabilitation specialist Dr. Nathan LeBrasseur talks about ways to slow the aging process.

Myth or Matter-of-Fact: It's OK to stop taking an antibiotic before the prescribed time is up if symptoms have gone away.

Mayo Clinic Radio is available on iHeartRadio.

Click here to listen to the program at 9:05 a.m. CT Saturday, Sept. 5 and follow #MayoClinicRadio.

To find and listen to archived shows, click here.

Mayo Clinic Radio is a weekly one-hour radio program highlighting health and medical information from Mayo Clinic.


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Tags: aging, Anti-Aging, antibiotic resistance, antibiotics, Dr Nathan LeBrasseur, Dr Pritish Tosh, Dr. Purna Kashyap, Dr. Sahil Khanna, fecal transplant, Human Microbiome, Mayo Clinic Radio, microbiome, Prescription Antibiotics, Prescription Medication, stool, stool transplant

September 3rd, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Telomerase targeting drug demonstrates benefit in myelofibrosis treatment

By Joe Dangor Joe Dangor

ROCHESTER, Minn.Imetelstat, a novel drug that targets telomerase, has demonstrated potential value in treating patients with myelofibrosis, according to the results of a study published today in the New England Journal of Medicine.

"We observed that Imetelstat was active and induced morphologic and molecular remissions in some patients with myelofibrosis," says Ayalew Tefferi, M.D., a hematologist at Mayo Clinic and lead author of the study. "We also observed that Imtelstat demonstrated selective anti-clonal activity, inhibiting the growth of cancer cells, which we had not previously documented with other drugs."

MEDIA CONTACT: Joe Dangor, Mayo Clinic Public Affairs, 507-284-5005,

Journalists: Sounds bites with Dr. Tefferi are available in the downloads.

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Tags: Cancer, chronic myeloid cancer, Dr Ayalew Tefferi, Dr Tefferi, imetelstat, Minnesota news release, myelofibrosis, News Release, telomerase

September 3rd, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Obesity Treatment: Achieving Long-Term Success For Women

By Micah Dorfner Micah Dorfner

Did you know that obesity is considered a chronic disease? It’s also a national epidemic. According to the Centers for Disease Control, more than one-third of U.S. adults (over 78 million people) are obese. Obesity is defined as having a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or greater.woman in kitchen cutting up healthy vegetables

"It’s no secret that weight gain occurs easily and weight loss can be a bit more challenging. Although there are genetic and hormonal influences on body weight, obesity occurs when you take in more calories than you burn through exercise and normal daily activities," says Seanna Thompson, M.D., Mayo Clinic Health System OB-GYN physician. "Your body stores these excess calories as fat. As fat cells accumulate, so do the pounds you carry around your body each day."

Significant health risks are associated with obesity. Obesity is linked to dozens of other chronic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes. Numerous cancers — including female reproductive tumors — are also associated with being overweight or obese. Other gynecologic problems may include infertility and irregular periods. Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: Dr Seanna Thompson, Mayo Clinic Health System, obesity, Weight Loss, Weight Loss Medication, women's health

September 3rd, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Thursday Consumer Health Tips

By Jen O'Hara Jen O

High Fiber Bowl of Cereal with Strawberries, Blueberries and Almonds

Slide show: Guide to a high-fiber diet

College depression: What parents need to know

Slide show: Which CPAP masks are best for you?

Coronary bypass surgery

Weight-loss procedure: Intragastric balloon

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Tags: college depression, coronary bypass surgery, CPAP, high-fiber foods, Intragastric Balloon, Thursday Consumer Health Tips

September 2nd, 2015 · Leave a Comment

From Marine to Miracle Cancer Survivor

By Dennis Douda Dennis Douda

marine Josh Russell in uniform, eating breakfast
Integrated care. A multidisciplinary approach. These are words often heard when talking about the way Mayo Clinic seamlessly incorporates many medical specialties to diagnose and treat patients. A young man from Wisconsin offers up a couple more – lifesaving teamwork. Here’s Dennis Douda for the Mayo Clinic News Network.

Journalists: A broadcast quality video package is available in the downloads. To read the full script, click here.



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Tags: Cancer, Dr Bradley Leibovich, Dr Dennis Wigle, Dr James Lynch, Dr Jan Kasperbauer, Dr Thomas Bower, Endovascular, Oncology, Surgery, teratoma, Testicular Cancer, Thoracic Oncology, Thoracic Surgery, Urology

September 2nd, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic Minute 9/02/2015

By Deborah Balzer Deborah Balzer


In today's Mayo Clinic Minute with Vivien Williams:

  • It's a nutrition showcase as we focus on food. We look at why the type of dietary fat you eat matters, hear from Mayo Clinic pediatrician Dr. Brian Lynch about the importance of good nutrition for our kids and are reminded about the ill effects of consuming sugary drinks.

For more from Dr. Brian Lynch on nutrition, click here.

Journalists: Video is available in the downloads. [TRT :58] Click here for the script.

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Tags: back to school, dietary fat, Dr Brian Lynch, Mayo Clinic Minute, Nutrition, sugary drinks, trans fats, Vivien Williams

September 1st, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Legionnaires’ disease: What you need to know

By Vivien Williams Vivien Williams

Legionnaires' disease has surfaced in Illinois, California and areas of New York and Pennsylvania. The disease is caused by a type of bacterium called Legionella, which can be found in fresh water. Symptoms include severe pneumonia and, in some cases, theThis image depicts a large grouping of Gram-negative Legionella pneumophila bacteria. infection can be deadly. Should you worry about it? Mayo Clinic infectious diseases specialist Dr. Pritish Tosh says, "While Legionnaires' disease can be a very serious infection, the general population should not panic about the recent outbreaks. Legionnaires' disease is usually not a problem when concentrations are low. Unless you've been directly exposed to it, you're really not at risk." He says the infection is not spread from person to person. Instead, you get it by inhaling the bacteria that's been aerosolized.

Treatment for Legionnaires' disease includes antibiotics. Fast treatment is key in order to avoid serious and potentially deadly complications.

Journalists: Sound bites are available in the downloads. [TRT 1:34]  Click here for the transcript.

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Tags: Dr Pritish Tosh, infectious diseases, Legionnaire's disease, pneumonia

September 1st, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic PathWays September 1: What’s the Diagnosis?

By April Josselyn April Josselyn

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

September 1st, 2015 · 1 Comment

Mayo Clinic and Hootsuite introduce new health care social media training program

By Rhoda Madson Rhoda Madson

Certificate program to offer best practices on using social media tools effectively

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA, and BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA  — Hootsuite, the most widely used platform for managing social media, and the Mayo Clinic Center for Social Media (MCCSM) today announced an industry-leading social media credential for medical and health care professionals. This joint initiative is being launched at the first-international Healthcare and Social Media Summit presented by Mayo Clinic in Brisbane, Australia, Sept. 1-2.

Social media has become a vital communications tool in the health care industry. More than 40 percent of consumers say that information on social media affects the way they deal with their health, and another 41 percent of people said social media would affect their choice of doctor, hospital or medical facility. The training program developed by Hootsuite and Mayo Clinic will teach medical and health care communications professionals how to effectively use social media technologies within the health care industry.

“It’s important for physicians and other health care professionals to understand how online social networks matter to them,” says Farris Timimi, M.D., a Mayo Clinic cardiologist and medical director for the MCCSM. “Even if they’re not yet active online — or maybe even particularly if they’re not involved — what others say about them affects their practices.”

Media Contacts:
Julie Huang, @juliewh11, Hootsuite Corporate Communications
Rhoda Madson, Mayo Clinic Public Affairs, 507-284-5005, Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: Dr Farris Timimi, Health Care Social Media, Hootsuite, Lee Aase, Mayo Clinic Center for Social Media, Minnesota news release, News Release

September 1st, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic, University of North Florida to host 11th annual Upbeat Pink: A Musical Tribute to Breast Cancer Survivorship

By Paul Scotti Paul Scotti

pink ribbon with sign that says breast cancer awarenessJACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Mayo Clinic and the University of North Florida (UNF) are honoring National Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October by hosting the 11th annual “Upbeat Pink: A Musical Tribute to Breast Cancer Survivorship” concert on Friday, Oct. 9 at 7:30 p.m. in Lazzara Performance Hall, UNF Fine Arts Building on the university’s campus in Jacksonville. The Upbeat Pink concert is free and open to the public.

The theme for this year’s program, “The Wild West Through TV and Movies”, showcases the UNF Wind Symphony, which will be conducted by Gordon Brock, D.M.A.

Guest speakers will include Stephanie Hines, M.D. from Mayo Clinic’s Florida campus and Patricia Dunbar-Norris, a breast cancer survivor.

MEDIA CONTACT: Paul Scotti, Mayo Clinic Public Affairs, 507-284-5005, Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: Breast Cancer, Donna Foundation, Florida News Release, Gordon Brock, Mayo Clinic, News Release, UNF Wind Symphony, University of North Florida, Upbeat Pink, 262 with Donna

September 1st, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic Q and A: Toenail fungus often difficult to eliminate completely

By lizatorborg lizatorborg

DEAR MAYO CLINIC: What causes toenail fungus, and what can be done to treat it? Is it contagious?

Toenail fungus is an infection that’s usually caused by a microscopic organism called dermatophyte fungus. These infections can be contagious, and they are often difficult to eliminate completely. Fortunately, for most healthy adults toenail fungus doesn’t pose any serious health risks.medical illustration of toenail fungal infection

Toenail fungus is a common condition that begins as a white or yellow spot under the tip of your toenail. As the infection goes deeper, nail fungus may cause your nail to discolor, thicken and crumble at the edge. Fungal infections are more likely to happen in your toenails than in your fingernails because toenails often are confined in a dark, warm, moist environment — inside your shoes — where fungi can thrive. Toes also have less blood flow than fingers, making it harder for your body’s immune system to detect and stop the infection.

The older you are, the more likely you are to get toenail fungus. That’s because as you age, your immune system changes. In addition, your nails become more brittle and drier over time, creating more cracks where fungus can live. Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: Dr. Dawn Davis, Mayo Clinic Q A, toenail fungus