Dennis Douda @ddouda
Activity by Dennis Douda @ddouda
The 2016 Olympic games are underway. Gold medal hurdler Aries Merritt came within an eye blink of making the U.S. team to defend his title. Only a scant .01 seconds at the track and field trials in July kept him from making the trip to Rio. But, the fact he was even in the running is a major victory in itself.Just one year ago, kidney disease threatened not just Merritt's career, but also his life. Mayo Clinic physicians figured out what was making him sick, and guided him through the kidney transplant that put him back in the race. His living donor hero turned out to be his own sister. Dennis Douda has his story.
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Each year, around the world, 175,000 deaths are attributed to aortic aneurysms. The aorta, the largest blood vessel in the body, carries blood directly from the heart. A variety of factors may cause the aorta to dilate like an overstretched balloon. If it should burst, it’s possible for a person to bleed to death internally in a matter of minutes.Because aneurysms may be present without symptoms, most are discovered incidentally, while doctors are treating other conditions. In the case of one Minnesota man, his aneurysm was found during a pre-operative exam for carpal tunnel surgery. His achy wrist was not the only thing that may have saved his life. He was the first person in the U.S. to be treated with a new kind of stent that Mayo Clinic vascular surgeon Dr. Gustavo Oderich and his team are helping to develop for just such conditions. Here's Dennis Douda with the story of a very lucky man.
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Up to one-third of the population is considered moderately obese. Many people could use medical help to lose weight, but don’t qualify for gastric bypass surgery. So, Mayo Clinic experts are turning to a number of less invasive — even reversible — options to improve patients’ health. Dennis Douda reports.
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Up to one-third of the population is moderately obese, with a body mass index between 30 and 40. In the summer of 2015, Mayo Clinic doctors were the first in the U.S. to implant a new weight-loss device ─ an intragastric balloon ─ for those who need medical help, but don’t qualify for bariatric surgery. As the first results are being assessed, Mayo experts say the balloon has the potential to benefit millions of people. Here’s Dennis Douda for the Mayo Clinic News Network.
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New research at Mayo Clinic is bringing hope to hundreds of thousands of Crohn’s disease patients. Their extreme pain from complications is both physical and emotional and, for many, incurable. But, an innovation using the patient’s own stem cells seems to work extremely well in early testing. Eventually, researchers say, it may be used to treat Crohn’s disease in general. Here’s Dennis Douda for the Mayo Clinic News Network.
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With summertime upon us, here’s a healthy reminder to wear your sunscreen and keep an eye on changes to your skin. One in 5 Americans will develop skin cancer in his or her lifetime. Diagnosed early, it is highly treatable. Even melanoma, which accounts for 75 percent of skin cancer deaths, often is cured when removed at its earliest stages. Dennis Douda has more.
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May is Melanoma Awareness Month. It’s a good reminder to wear your sunscreen and keep an eye on changes to your skin — and to moles in particular. It’s estimated 1 in 5 Americans will develop skin cancer, and melanoma accounts for 75 percent of skin cancer deaths.
Here’s Dennis Douda for the Mayo Clinic News Network.
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A girl from Nigeria says she has a new future ahead, after a life-changing trip to Mayo Clinic. The new Limb Lengthening and Regeneration Clinic, which incorporates many medical specialties, enabled doctors to restore her legs to normal, so that she might enjoy the simple steps that most take for granted. Dennis Douda reports.
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Former President Jimmy Carter made news around the world a few months ago when, after a battle with potentially deadly melanoma, he revealed he was cancer-free. Hearing that a so-called “miracle drug” was responsible, Dr. Haidong Dong could not help but smile. Discoveries in a Mayo Clinic lab years earlier had helped to make this therapy, and a new generation of similar cancer therapies, possible. “Lots of people work in these [research] fields for years, for decades,” says Dr. Dong. “They never give up and their persistence eventually makes a big difference.”
Dr. Larry Pease, the co-director of the Cancer Immunology and Immunotherapy Program in the Mayo Clinic Cancer Center, agrees. “Basically, at Mayo Clinic, what we’re interested in is meeting the unmet needs of the patients,” says Dr. Pease. “But, you know, from a biological perspective, one of the goals is to try to figure out how the immune system works.” Dr. Dong adds, “This is our responsibility: to find answers.” From the Mayo Clinic News Network, Dennis Douda has more on the story.
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To run, play tag and try the sport of basketball – those are the new activities a girl from Nigeria is looking forward to most, after a life-changing trip to Mayo Clinic.
"She is very happy, and we are too, quite frankly," says Dr. Todd Milbrandt, a pediatric surgeon at Mayo Clinic Children's Center. "She’s just a phenomenal young woman and a really motivated patient," adds orthopedic surgeon S. Andrew Sems, M.D., with the Limb Lengthening and Regeneration Clinic.
Step by step, doctors were able to restore her legs to normal, so that she might enjoy the simple steps that most take for granted. Here’s Dennis Douda for the Mayo Clinic News Network.
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Randy Marlow knew he may have to be patient when he was added to the organ transplant waiting list. A shortage of donor organs is the reason more than 120,000 Americans are waiting for their second chance at life.
Randy's situation was particularly challenging, which meant much of his wait was spent in the hospital. Still, his Mayo Clinic team found creative ways to help the days pass. Dennis Douda reports.
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April is National Donate Life Month. On any given day, more than 120,000 people in the U.S. are waiting for lifesaving donor organs to become available.
Randy Marlow was 1 of more than 4,000 people in need of a heart transplant. He recalls being told that the odds were really stacked against him. A host of factors made finding a compatible donor extremely challenging. Still, his Mayo Clinic doctors told him, if he had the patience, they had a plan. Here’s Dennis Douda for the Mayo Clinic News Network.
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Great medical care often involves integrative collaborations among several specialties – teams of doctors working together. The patient is a vital member of that team, as well. When melanoma put a lifelong athlete in a fight for her life, she says she found a team at Mayo Clinic that kept her in the game. Here’s Dennis Douda for the Mayo Clinic News Network. Watch Video
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Are You Due for Your Screening? Don't Put it Off!
Every person over the age of 50 is strongly advised to get a colonoscopy. It’s one of the best ways to detect colorectal cancer, the third most common cancer in the United States. In 2016, 135,000 new cases are expected to be diagnosed.
March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. Mayo Clinic Cancer Center researcher and gastroenterologist, Paul J. Limburg, M.D., says research shows you can cut your risk by not smoking, exercising, losing excess weight, and eating a diet high in fruits, vegetable and whole grains.
Dr. Limburg says, even though colorectal cancer is the the second leading cause of cancer death, colonoscopy and other screening methods make it one of the most preventable cancers. Here’s Dennis Douda for the Mayo Clinic News Network.
Watch the Mayo Clinic Minute.
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This year, 135,000 new cases of colorectal cancer are expected to be diagnosed in the U.S., making it the third most common cancer. It’s the second leading cause of cancer death. However, it is also one of the most preventable cancers. With March being Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month, Mayo Clinic live-streamed a colonoscopy, just to show how simple this life-saving procedure can be. Here’s Dennis Douda for the Mayo Clinic News Network.
Journalists: A broadcast-quality video is available in the downloads. (2:04) Read the script.
Each year, about 500,000 Americans have to have their colons removed. Whether it’s because of cancer, trauma, diverticulitis or an inflammatory disease, colectomy may be necessary to save their lives. That was the case for Luis, a special young man who came a long way for help. His surgical team at Mayo Clinic found a very special solution. Here’s Dennis Douda for the Mayo Clinic News Network.
One year ago this month, teams of Mayo Clinic physicians were making complex plans to save a little girl with a very special heart. Baby Kieran had not yet arrived in the world. While still in the womb, her parents learned their daughter's heart was developing outside of her chest. "The odds were stacked against her," says Kieran's mother, Caitlin Veitz.
Today, however, Kieran is speaking her first words and her family is making plans for her first birthday. Her heart is performing so well, she may be able to wait another year or two before the next surgery to make additional repairs. Congenital heart problems are the most common structural birth defect. They affect about 1 in 100 children. While Kieran's situation was more complicated than most, February's American Heart Month is a great time to celebrate the progress being made for patients of all ages.
Watch the original story to see the amazing teamwork that saved Kieran's life.
Not all great advances in surgery happen in the operating room. Some are coming off the printer – a 3D printer. At Mayo Clinic, radiologists and surgeons are teaming up to discover every possible detail about complex cases before the operation. In some situations, it means patients experience less pain, shorter hospital stays and quicker recoveries. 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.
When winter storms hit and the thermometer drops, homes are buttoned up tight as people try to stay warm. Unfortunately, it's also a time when cases of carbon monoxide poisoning rise. The invisible, odorless gas claims about 500 lives each year. Symptoms may include headache, dizziness, vomiting, chest pain and confusion.
If you or someone you're with develops signs or symptoms, leave the area and get fresh air immediately. Call 911 for emergency help. Depending on the degree and length of exposure, victims may suffer debilitating injuries, so prompt medical attention can make a big difference in the recovery.
"It's very important treatment be tailored to the individual because, even though there are common effects of carbon monoxide poisoning, nobody’s injury or impairment is exactly the same," says Mayo Clinic's Dr. Allen Brown, an expert in physical medicine and rehabilitation after brain injuries.
The fumes of any fossil fuel not properly vented can cause problems. Natural gas, oil, wood, charcoal and engine exhausts are common sources in carbon monoxide poisoning. That’s why, in addition to homes, carbon monoxide detectors are often recommended in campers, cabins and ice fishing houses.
Watch this story of a young motocross rider named Wyatt, who was one of the lucky ones after a very close call with carbon monoxide poisoning in the summer months.
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Professional race car driver Tommy Archer just completed the final lap after seven weeks of radiation therapy for additional treatment of his prostate cancer. "The reality of being able to ring that bell after 33 treatments is humbling," Mr. Archer said. "I didn't think I had the patience," he added. "But, it's what I had to do to stay healthy." Thanks to a Choline C-11 PET scan, a technology developed at Mayo Clinic, Tommy was allowed to return to the race track this past summer after a three-year absence. The treatment approach allowed his urologists to find and remove a hidden tumor that was keeping him out of competition. The same technology can also be used to provide early detection in case a patient's cancer comes back, which is exactly how it worked for Tommy. "The feeling I have now is relief and I hope to be cancer-free."
Now that he's completed treatment, Archer Brothers Racing says Tommy's preparing for a full racing season in 2016. In fact, he hits the road in a few days for a big race in Florida next week.
Watch the original story of how a team of physicians and a bold strategy put Tommy Archer back in the race.