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July 29th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Learn the ABCs of Ticks with Dr. Bobbi Pritt

By Vivien Williams

More areas in the United States are seeing human cases of Lyme disease. A recent report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows a significant increase in geographic areas — as much as 320 percent in the Northeast — determined as high risk for contracting the tick-borne illness.

The Mayo Clinic Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology and Mayo Medical Laboratories have developed “The ABCs of Ticks" flash cards to help protect you against tick-borne diseases.

Dr. Bobbi Pritt, director of the Clinical Parasitology Laboratory, says the online, interactive and easy-to-use tool explains what a person needs to know about tick bite prevention, treatment and more. Dr. Pritt invited medical reporter Vivien Williams to the Bacteriology Laboratory where she explains how the flashcards work and how you, your family and your pets can stay safe from ticks.

Journalists: Video is available in the downloads. [TRT 2:41] 

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Tags: ABC's of Ticks, Dr Bobbi Pritt, Lyme disease, Mayo Clinic Health System, Mayo Medical Laboratories, Tick-Borne Diseases, Vivien Williams

July 29th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Hysterectomy may indicate cardiovascular risk in women under age 50

By Kelley Luckstein

woman talking to female physician about healthROCHESTER, Minn. — Hysterectomy may be a marker of early cardiovascular risk and disease, especially in women under 35, according to Mayo Clinic experts.

In a study recently published in Menopause: The Journal of the North American Menopause Society, researchers found that women who underwent hysterectomy were much more likely to have pre-existing cardiovascular risk factors – especially obesity – than women of the same age in the control group who did not undergo hysterectomy. In particular, women under age 35 had the most cardiovascular risk factors and disease, including stroke.

“Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death among women, and women see primarily gynecologists between 18 years and 64 years – a time when early screening for cardiovascular disease would be important,” says lead author and Mayo Clinic OB-GYN Shannon Laughlin-Tommaso, M.D., “We wanted to do this study to find a gynecologic screening method for cardiovascular disease.”

MEDIA CONTACT: Kelley Luckstein and Katie Pak, Mayo Clinic Public Affairs, 507-284-5005, Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: cardiovascular disease, Dr Shannon Laughlin-Tommaso, gynecologist, hysterectomy, Mayo Clinic Rochester, Minnesota news release, News Release, OB-GYN, obesity, Research, stroke, women

July 28th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Raffles Medical Group first member in Asia joins Mayo Clinic Care Network

By Rhoda Madson

Raffles Medical Building, Mayo Clinic Care Network
SINGAPORE — Mayo Clinic and Raffles Medical Group announced today that Singapore-based Raffles has joined the Mayo Clinic Care Network, a growing network of organizations committed to better serving patients and their families through collaboration.

Dr. Nair and Dr. Hayes at MCCN announcement sharing

Dr. Prem Kumar Nair, Managing Director, Singapore Healthcare and Dr. David Hayes, Medical Director, Mayo Clinic Care Network.

Raffles Medical Group, the largest private group practice in Singapore, is the first health care organization in Asia to join the network. The formal agreement gives Raffles Medical Group access to the latest Mayo Clinic knowledge and promotes physician collaboration that complements local expertise. Through shared resources, more patients can get answers to complex medical questions while staying close to home.

“Our patients have always looked to Raffles to provide them with quality care,” says Dr. Donald Poon, general manager, RafflesHospital. “We share a commitment to enhance care and add value for patients, which has become increasingly important in a changing health care landscape. By working with Mayo Clinic, we will be in an even stronger position to deliver high-quality, best-practice care. This is especially true for both our Centres of Excellence – Raffles Heart Centre and Raffles Cancer Centre.”

“We are pleased to welcome Raffles Medical Group to the network,” says David Hayes, M.D., medical director, Mayo Clinic Care Network. “As we have worked together toward today’s announcement, we have been impressed by the cultural alignment of our two institutions. Raffles continues to raise the bar on the ways in which an integrated, team-based approach can be used to meet the needs of its patients, and we’re very proud of our shared purpose — to bring the highest quality patient care to the region."

Journalists: B-roll video of the Mayo Clinic Rochester campus is available in the downloads.

Rhoda Madson, Mayo Clinic Public Affairs, 507-284-5005,
Joanna Lee, Raffles Medical Group, +65 6311-1312,

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Tags: Dr. David Hayes, Mayo Clinic Care Network, Minnesota news release, News Release, Raffles Medical Group, Singapore

July 28th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Creepy, Dreadful, Wonderful Parasites: A parasitologist’s view of the world – week of July 27, 2015

By Jen O'Hara

researcher Dr. Bobbi Pritt with lab microscopeEvery week, Dr. Bobbi Pritt posts a new case, along with the answer to the previous case. Read Dr. Pritt's blog: Parasite Wonders and submit your answers, comments and questions. Enjoy science! Read more about Dr. Pritt's work.

Note from Dr. Pritt: All opinions expressed here are mine and not my employer's. Information provided here is for medical education only. It is not intended as and does not substitute for medical advice. I do not accept medical consults from patients.

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Tags: Dr Bobbi Pritt, Mayo Medical Laboratories, Parasite Wonders, pathology

July 28th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic PathWays July 28: What’s the Diagnosis?

By 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

July 28th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic Q and A: Many safe choices available to help whiten teeth

By lizatorborg

teeth whiteningDEAR MAYO CLINIC: What is the most effective way to whiten teeth? Is it worth it to pay the extra expense for treatment from a dentist, or do the over-the-counter options work just as well? Are they safe for your teeth?

ANSWER: There are quite a few choices available if you want to whiten your teeth. The approved products — both those you can buy at drugstores and those available from your dentist — are safe. Just make sure you follow the directions carefully. Many teeth whiteners are quite effective, particularly if you use them for an extended period of time. If cost is a concern, try the over-the-counter options first. If those don’t give you the results you want, then talk to your dentist about other choices he or she offers.

One of the simplest options is whitening toothpaste. It whitens teeth by removing surface stains, such as those caused by drinking coffee or smoking. Some whitening toothpastes contain the chemical blue covarine. It stays on the surface of the teeth and makes them appear less yellow. Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: Dr Phillip Sheridan, Dr Sheridan, Mayo Clinic Q A, teeth whitening, whitening toothpaste

July 28th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic releases findings and treatment criteria for use of left-ventricular assist devices on heart failure patients

By Ginger Plumbo

Cirugía para trasplante cardíaco con el Dr. Richard DalyROCHESTER, Minn. — Mayo Clinic is announcing results of a study on the effectiveness of left-ventricular assist devices (LVAD) in treating patients with a form of cardiomyopathy called restrictive cardiomyopathy (RCM). The Mayo Clinic study, which is the largest study of its kind to date, demonstrates that LVAD devices are a viable and accessible option for treating patients with RCM, who would otherwise see their health deteriorate or who may not survive. The study suggests criteria that clinicians can use for successful implementation of these devices in RCM.

Approximately 500,000 people are currently living with cardiomyopathy, which is a condition that affects the muscles in the heart. RCM is a rare form of cardiomyopathy that limits the heart muscle from relaxing between beats when the blood returns from the body back to the heart. This causes the heart to pump weakly and restricts the flow of blood to the heart’s chambers. An LVAD is a mechanical pump that helps pump blood from the heart to the rest of the body.

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

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Tags: Dr Lyle Joyce, Dr Sudhir Kushwaha, Heart Transplant, Mayo Clinic research, Minnesota news release

July 27th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

In case you missed the show: #MayoClinicRadio PODCAST 7/25/2015

By Jen O'Hara

Dr. Pritish Tosh talks on Mayo Clinic Radio

Listen: MayoClinicRadio 07-25-15 PODCAST

On this week's program, infectious diseases specialist Dr. Pritish Tosh explains how antibiotic resistance works and how to avoid it. Also on the program, a new study in Mayo Clinic Proceedings may help predict who is most vulnerable to opioid pain medication addiction. Anesthesiologist and pain management specialist Dr. Michael Hooten explains the study's results. And family medicine specialist Dr. John Wilkinson discusses the current recommendations for when to get a complete physical exam.


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Tags: Mayo Clinic Radio

July 27th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic Minute 7/27/2015

By Deborah Balzer

In today's Mayo Clinic Minute with Vivien Williams:

  • A group of the nation's leading cancer experts works to reduce the high cost of cancer drugs, how fat around the hearts of many post-menopausal women increases risk of cardiovascular disease and researchers say the guidelines for dietary protein intake need updating.

Click here for more on the cost of cancer drugs, here for the heart study and here for the protein study.

Journalists: Video is available in the downloads. [TRT :57] Click here for the script.


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Tags: cancer drugs, cardiovascular disease, dietary protein, Dr Ayalew Tefferi, Mayo Clinic Minute

July 27th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

How to Overcome the Top 5 Fitness Barriers

By Micah Dorfner

woman stretching in exercise gear, ocean boardwalk

Sticking to a regular exercise schedule isn't easy. After all, there are plenty of potential hindrances — time, boredom, injuries, self-confidence. But these issues don't need to stand in your way.

Darcy Reber, nurse practitioner at Mayo Clinic Health System in Cannon Falls, shares practical strategies for overcoming common barriers to fitness.

  1. “I don't have enough time to exercise.”

Setting aside time to exercise can be a challenge. Use a little creativity to get the most out of your time.

Squeeze in exercise throughout the day. If you don't have time for a full workout, don't sweat it. Shorter spurts of exercise, such as 10 minutes of walking spaced throughout the day, offer benefits too. Additionally, you can try office exercises.

Get up earlier. If your days are packed and the evening hours are just as hectic, get up 30 minutes earlier twice a week to exercise. Once you've adjusted to early-morning workouts, add another day or two to the routine. Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: Darcy Reber, Exercise, Fitness, Mayo Clinic Health System

July 27th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Monday’s Housecall

By Jen O'Hara

Housecall BannerTHIS WEEK'S TOP STORIES tick on a blade of grass
Stay safe this summer: Know the ABCs of ticks
For such tiny creatures, ticks can make a big impact. Here's how to protect yourself on the trails and in backyards this season.

Weight loss: Choosing a diet that's right for you
Dropping those extra pounds is your goal, but which diet will help you reach it? Get the skinny on how to rate weight-loss plans.

Statins: Do they cause ALS?
Statins can cause muscle injury in some people. But can they also trigger ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease)? See what researchers found.

Celiac disease diet: How do I get enough grains?
If you have celiac disease, there are plenty of gluten-free grains — including good-for-you whole grains — out there.

Click here to get a free e-subscription to the Housecall newsletter.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: ABC's of Ticks, ALS, Athletic Shoes, celiac disease, chest pain, Exercise, Healthy Recipes, Melanoma, Monday's Housecall, reducing stress, statins, stress blog, Weight Loss

July 25th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic Q and A: Vaccine recommended for older adults even if they’ve had shingles

By lizatorborg

DEAR MAYO CLINIC:illustration of man with Shingles along his back I am a healthy 78-year-old man and have never had shingles or the shingles vaccine. I did have chickenpox when I was a child. Is the shingles vaccine something you would recommend for someone like me? What are the side effects of the vaccine?

ANSWER: Once you have had chickenpox, the virus that causes it — called the varicella-zoster virus — stays in your body for the rest of your life. That virus can be reactivated at any time, causing shingles. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or CDC, recommends that adults age 60 and older get the shingles vaccine, whether you’ve already had shingles or not.

When you get chickenpox, the varicella-zoster virus causes a rash to develop all over your body. Even though it’s itchy and uncomfortable, most people recover from chickenpox without any lasting problems. After the rash goes away, however, the virus remains and goes into hiding in your body’s nerve cells. Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: Dr James Steckelberg, Dr Steckelberg, Mayo Clinic Q A, shingles, shingles vaccine

July 24th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Something to Think About ~ Should you laugh at yourself?

By Dana Sparks

young people taking a selfie picture, laughing and smiling

Should you laugh at yourself?

"I have a choice. I could be stiff and defensive. I could thwart any attempt of others to laugh at me. Or I can learn to laugh at myself. I believe the latter is a healthier option."
- Dr. Amit Sood

Amit Sood, M.D. is director of research in the Complementary and Integrative Medicine Program at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. He also chairs the Mind-Body Medicine Initiative at Mayo Clinic

Click here to read previous blog posts. Follow Dr. Sood on Twitter @AmitSoodMD

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Tags: Alternative Medicine, Dr Amit Sood, laughter, Something to Think About

July 24th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Tips for cancer survivors to keep cool in the summer heat

By Jen O'Hara

Blue and white banner logo for 'Living with Cancer' blog

Tips for cancer survivors to keep cool in the summer heatthermometer pointing up toward bright sunshine
Some cancer treatments can increase your risk for dehydration and sunburn. Here's how to stay safe and comfortable this summer.

Low white blood cell count
Why would the number of white blood cells (the ones that fight diseases) decrease? And what precautions should you discuss with your doctor?

Prostate cancer treatment
Does initial treatment preclude other treatments later? Learn more.

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Tags: Cancer Survivors, Living With Cancer Blog, low white blood cell count, prostate cancer treatment

July 24th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic Minute 7/24/2015

By Vivien Williams

In today's Mayo Clinic Minute with Vivien Williams:

  • New recommendations for when women should start getting mammograms and how often, researchers say e-cigarettes may be just as addictive as tobacco cigarettes and Twitter pulls flickering videos because they may increase risk of epileptic seizures for some people.

Click here for more information on mammogram recommendations, here for the e-cigarette study and here for Twitter.

Journalists: Video is available in the downloads. [TRT :50] Click here for the script.

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Tags: Dr. Sandhya Pruthi, e-cigarettes, Epilepsy, Mammogram, Mayo Clinic Minute, twitter, Vivien Williams