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November 10th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic Experts Advise Caution with New Cholesterol Drugs- PCSK-9 Inhibitors

By bobnellis bobnellis

In a viewpoint released today in The Journal of the American Medical Association Cardiovascular Special Issue, Mayo Clinic endocrinologists and researchers are warning against the “premature and widespread adoption” of a new type of drug that reduces cholesterol, PCSK-9 inhibitors.the word cholesterol on a scale or meter reader They argue that little is known about their long-term safety and efficacy on outcomes that matter to patients. Given the long track record of efficacy and safety and the low cost of statins, they think that it is premature to adopt PCSK-9 inhibitors as alternatives to statins.

The Food and Drug Administration has recently approved the new class of drugs for patients with high LDL-cholesterol who also have familial hypercholesterolemia or with clinical cardiovascular disease who are seeking secondary prevention or cannot tolerate statins. The Mayo experts are predicting four situations that will fuel abandoning statins in favor of the PCSK-9 inhibitors:

  • Patients who have muscle problems or other symptoms suggestive of statin intolerance.
  • Patients who have a heart attack or a stroke while using a statin.
  • Patients who may not to be taking statins every day.
  • Patients who have cholesterol levels that remain high despite statins.

Media Contact: Bob Nellis, Mayo Clinic Public Affairs,

Journalists: Sound bites with Drs. Montori and Rodriguez-Gutierrez are available in the downloads.

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Tags: Dr Victor Montori, Endocrinology, Nilay Shah, PCSK-9 inhibitors, Rene Rodriguez-Gutierrez, statins

August 18th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

New Balloon Therapy Lifts Weight Loss Burden

By ddouda ddouda

In the United States, two-thirds of the population is said to be either overweight or obese. Now there’s a new option for those who might need medical help to lose weight but don’t qualify for weight loss surgery.

This week Mayo Clinic gastroenterologists were the first in the U.S. to implant a new device recently approved by the FDA. The procedure involves the temporary placement of a special balloon in the stomach and has the potential for lasting results. Here’s Dennis Douda for the Mayo Clinic News Network.

Click here to watch a video with Dr. Andres Acosta Cardenas explain the procedure in Spanish.

Journalists: A broadcast quality video package is available in the downloads. Click here to read the full script.  Sound bites with Dr. Acosta areac also available.

Mayo Clinic has a financial interest in Apollo Endosurgery, manufacturer of the ORBERA managed weight loss system. Revenue Mayo Clinic receives is used to support its not-for-profit mission in patient care, education and research.

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Tags: bariatric surgery, bmi, body mass index, Dr Barham Abu Dayyeh, Dr Christopher Gostout, Dr Karen Grothe, Dr Manpreet Mundi, Intragastric Balloon, obesity, Weight Loss, Gastroenterology

May 5th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Expert Alert – Fertility and Conception

By briankilen briankilen


ROCHESTER, Minn. -- With Mother’s Day being May 10 and May being Women’s Health Month, Mayo Clinic offers expert guidance on fertility and conception.

Mayo Clinic expert Jani Jensen, M.D. is available to talk about the latest research and provide expert guidance for reporters writing articles on women’s health and fertility and conception.

Dr. Jensen is a Mayo specialist in the division of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility and co-director of the In Vitro Fertilization Program at Mayo Clinic.

She is co-author of the recently released Mayo Clinic Guide to Fertility and Conception. The comprehensive book provides answers and explanations for nearly every aspect of achieving a successful pregnancy. It covers lifestyle and nutrition, the intricacies of natural conception, common fertility problems, the latest medical treatments to help (including intrauterine insemination, in-vitro fertilization and donors), and information on special situations (fertility preservation, choosing single parenthood, same-sex couples and more). Read the rest of this entry »

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Tags: Caffeine, conception, Dr Jani Jensen, Fertility, GBS, Minnesota news release, News Release, pregnancy, stress, women's health

March 3rd, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic and Gentag, Inc. Announce Agreement To Develop Wireless Sensors for Treatment of Obesity and Diabetes

By briankilen briankilen

NFC patch sensor

NFC patch sensor

ROCHESTER, Minn. — Mayo Clinic and Gentag, Inc. have reached an agreement to develop the next generation of wearable biosensors designed to fight obesity and diabetes.

“We are hoping that this technology will be game-changer. These patch biosensors may help us reduce global obesity and diabetes,” says James Levine, M.D., Ph.D., a Mayo Clinic endocrinologist and obesity researcher. “They are accurate, inexpensive, and can be integrated into the care people receive."

A first-of-its-kind, the wearable patch sensors are the size of a small bandage, and are designed to be painless, wireless and disposable. In the bandage is a sensor that communicates via a closed-loop diabetes management system which is compatible with cell phones. The system will allow researchers to monitor movement and develop treatments for obesity and related conditions.

MEDIA CONTACT: Brian Kilen, Mayo Clinic Public Affairs, 507-284-5005,

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Tags: diabetes, Mayo Clinic Ventures, News Release, News Release Minnesota, obesity, research

January 28th, 2015 · Leave a Comment

Thyroid Disease Can Diminish Quality of Life

By micahdorfner micahdorfner

illustration of normal thyroid glandMuch like motor vehicles have engines, our bodies have similar parts to help us function. The heart and brain are the big anatomy regulators, but did you know the thyroid is also a crucial driver of bodily operation? When your thyroid experiences problems, your whole body starts to feel out of sorts — and your quality of life suffers.

Knowing how your thyroid works and what signs indicate something is wrong will
help you get the care you need and enhance your livelihood. Deb Vogelsang, nurse practitioner at Mayo Clinic Health System, answers some common questions about thyroid disease.

QWhat is a thyroid?

A. A thyroid is a gland at the base of the neck. This important part of your body produces hormones that regulate blood pressure, body temperature, heart rate and weight.

Q. What are potential thyroid problems?how thyroid works illustration

A. There are four main thyroid afflictions: hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism, thyroid cancer and thyroid nodules.

While all of these conditions can be serious, each has its own symptoms and distinctions.

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Tags: Cancer, Deb Vogelsang, hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism, Mayo Clinic Health System, thyroid gland

May 13th, 2014 · Leave a Comment

Little-Known Condition Causes 5%-10% of High Blood Pressure Cases

By ddouda ddouda

More than 1 out of 4 Americans has high blood pressure. For millions of them, a little-known condition is to blame; primary aldosteronism or PA. It's caused when nodules on the adrenal glands increase the production of a specific, and even toxic,  hormone. The good news - the right treatment may cure their hypertension permanently and even save their life. Dennis Douda has more on how the condition is diagnosed and treated. A word of caution: There are graphic surgery images in the video. [TRT 2:21]

To read the script, click here.

Journalists: The video package and additional b-roll are available in the downloads. (TV stations: The graphic surgery images are at 1:35 & 1:55 in the video.)

Members of the media wishing to interview Dr. William Young may call 507-284-5005 or write to to make a request. 

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Tags: adrenal gland, adrenal vein sampling, aldosterone, AVS, Dr Geoffrey Thompson, Dr Thompson, Dr William Young, Dr Young, Endocrinology, primary aldosteronism, HL, Pkg

February 12th, 2014 · Leave a Comment

It’s National Tube Feeding Awareness Week

By bobnellis bobnellis

Tube feeding is a seldom talked about way of allowing patients to overcome a serious injury or condition and continue to lead a relatively normal and productive life. Yet it’s largely invisible unless the individual wants to make it known.

An inability to swallow due to stroke, cancer, cystic fibrosis, ALS or other condition makes tube feeding a necessity for thousands. Often it’s a temporary measure while someone is undergoing radiation or recovering from surgery. For others it’s a life-long practice and many people go to work, take vacations and manage their feeding as they go.

Click here to see a demonstration of how feeding tubes work.

Journalists:  Dr. Manpreet Mundi oversees the home enteral nutrition program at Mayo Clinic.  Sound bites with Dr. Mundi and broll are available in the downloads

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Tags: Dr Manpreet Mundi, Dr Mundi, enteral nutrition program, enteric medicine, Matthew Clark PhD, swallowing, swallowing disorder, throat cancer, tube feeding

January 30th, 2014 · Leave a Comment

Mayo Clinic Expert Says Heart Risks From Unnecessarily Treating “Low T” Serious Concern

By ddouda ddouda

"Anytime a physician prescribes a medication, there are going to be some risks associated with that medication," says William Young, Jr., M.D., the chair of Mayo Clinic's Division of Endocrinology.

Dr. Young says advertising for testosterone medications to treat so-called low T, particularly during televised sporting events, is prompting men to seek out prescriptions for a medication most of them don't need. "So successful has the marketing for this testosterone therapy been that, according to, an independent medicine website, sales of the testosterone gel Androgel in 2013 exceeded sales of Viagra," according to a statement from the UCLA newsroom regarding a new study of the cardiovascular risks of testosterone therapy.

Journalists: Sound bites with Dr. Young are available in the downloads.  

The joint study by UCLA, the National Institutes of Health and Consolidated Research Inc., found the risk of a heart attack shortly after beginning testosterone therapy roughly doubled for men under 65 with a history of heart disease. The study, in the Jan. 29 online edition of the journal PLOS ONE, is the largest to date examining heart disease in men using testosterone supplements.
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Tags: Dr William Young, Dr Young, Endocrinology, heart attack, Low-T, prostate, stroke, testosterone

January 21st, 2014 · Leave a Comment

Thyroid Awareness Month: Mayo Clinic Radio

By tracymccray tracymccray

How aware are you of your thyroid gland?

On Saturday, Jan. 25, at 9 a.m. CT, Ian Hay, M.D., Ph.D., will join the program to mark Thyroid Awareness Month.  How do you know if your thyroid gland isn't working?  Who should be screened for hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism?  What is Hashimoto’s disease? Why are cases of thyroid cancer increasing?  Are women at greater risk of thyroid problems and why?  We hope you'll listen.

Myth or Matter of Fact:  Once you begin taking thyroid medication, you’re on it forever.

Miss the show? Here is the podcast: Mayo Clinic Radio Full Show 1-25-2014

To listen to the program live, click here.

For future topics, click on Upcoming Programs.

To listen to archived shows, click on Episodes.

If there is a topic you would like us to address, drop us a note.  Click here to create a guest account.



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Tags: Radio, hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism, Thyroid, Thyroid cancer, thyroid tumors, Dr Hay, Dr Ian Hay, Hashimoto's disease, thyroid awareness, Thyroid Awareness Month

November 19th, 2013 · Leave a Comment

TUESDAY Q & A: For those with diabetes, smoking can increase complications

By danasparks danasparks

Dear Mayo Clinic: Does smoking have an effect on diabetes?caucasian person checking blood sugar counter for diabetes

Answer: Yes. There is some evidence that cigarette smoking can raise the risk of developing diabetes. And for those who have diabetes, smoking can increase the number of complications from the disease, as well as the severity of those complications.

Someone who has diabetes has too much blood sugar (commonly called blood glucose), which can lead to serious health concerns, such as cardiovascular disease, nerve damage (neuropathy), kidney damage, problems with the eyes and feet, bone and joint disorders, and skin problems.

Smoking may increase the risk of diabetes because it can increase blood sugar levels. It also affects the body's ability to respond to its own insulin — a hormone whose main job is to keep the level of sugar in the bloodstream within a normal range. Eventually, smoking may lead to insulin resistance. Thus, the more a person smokes, the greater the risk of diabetes. Heavy smokers — more than 20 cigarettes a day — almost double their risk of developing diabetes, when compared with nonsmokers.
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Tags: cigarettes, diabetes, Dr Adrian Vella, endocrinolgy, Medical Edge column, Smoking