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Latest Posts

Electrify A Potato, Boost Its Antioxidants?

PotatoesAntioxidants are important substances that prevent free radicals from damaging cells, and potatoes contain substantial amounts of them.

However, researchers from Obihiro University in Japan thought that more would be better and have developed some innovative methods of boosting the potato’s antioxidant content. By immersing the potatoes in water or salt and subsequently applying ultrasound or electricity for 5 to 30 minutes, they increased the amounts of antioxidants by as much as 50 percent. Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at Medgadget*

Vitamin E-Infused Contact Lenses May Treat Glaucoma

44543444.jpgResearchers at the University of Florida in Gainesville have developed a vitamin E-secreting contact lens that can bring the valuable antioxidant directly to eyes.

Vitamin E is packaged into clusters within the lens and the aggregate works to slowly release the chemical while remaining invisible to the eye.

“These vitamin structures are like ‘nanobricks’,” said Anuj Chauhan, Ph.D., lead researcher of the study. “The drug molecules can’t go through the vitamin E. They must go around it. Because the nanobricks are so much bigger than the drug molecules -– we believe about a few hundred times bigger –- the molecules get diverted and must travel a longer path. This increases the duration of the drug release from the lenses.” Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at Medgadget*

Topical Medications And Bathing: A Source Of Water Pollution

I have written two posts in the past on proper disposal of unused medications, and I have always been mindful of the medicines as a source of environmental water pollution. This past week the American Chemical Society reminded (head-slapped me) that topical medications are a source of environmental water pollution from their active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs). Yes, the simple act of bathing washes hormones, antibiotics, and other pharmaceuticals down the drain into the water supply.

Ilene Ruhoy, M.D., Ph.D. and colleague Christian Daughton, Ph.D. looked at potential alternative routes for the entry into the environment by way of bathing, showering, and laundering. These routes may be important for certain APIs found in medications that are applied topically to the skin — creams, lotions, ointments, gels, and skin patches. These APIs include steroids (such as cortisone and testosterone), acne medicine, antimicrobials, narcotics, and other substances. Read more »

*This blog post was originally published at Suture for a Living*

Latest Interviews

IDEA Labs: Medical Students Take The Lead In Healthcare Innovation

It’s no secret that doctors are disappointed with the way that the U.S. healthcare system is evolving. Most feel helpless about improving their work conditions or solving technical problems in patient care. Fortunately one young medical student was undeterred by the mountain of disappointment carried by his senior clinician mentors…

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How To Be A Successful Patient: Young Doctors Offer Some Advice

I am proud to be a part of the American Resident Project an initiative that promotes the writing of medical students residents and new physicians as they explore ideas for transforming American health care delivery. I recently had the opportunity to interview three of the writing fellows about how to…

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Latest Book Reviews

Book Review: Is Empathy Learned By Faking It Till It’s Real?

I m often asked to do book reviews on my blog and I rarely agree to them. This is because it takes me a long time to read a book and then if I don t enjoy it I figure the author would rather me remain silent than publish my…

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The Spirit Of The Place: Samuel Shem’s New Book May Depress You

When I was in medical school I read Samuel Shem s House Of God as a right of passage. At the time I found it to be a cynical yet eerily accurate portrayal of the underbelly of academic medicine. I gained comfort from its gallows humor and it made me…

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Eat To Save Your Life: Another Half-True Diet Book

I am hesitant to review diet books because they are so often a tangled mess of fact and fiction. Teasing out their truth from falsehood is about as exhausting as delousing a long-haired elementary school student. However after being approached by the authors’ PR agency with the promise of a…

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