Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Pharma mirrors a political dilemma

Wednesday, November 18, 2015, 9:31 AM
An interesting scene prompted by Valeant Pharmaceuticals has been unfolding during the last few weeks. As the company squirmed under political pressure and legal scrutiny for its enormous price hikes, its finagling with specialty pharmacy Philidor, and its pure-finance business model, the Big Cap pharma... Read more

A new nonsurgical option for enlarged prostate

Tuesday, November 17, 2015, 4:58 PM
By age 60, about half of men have enlarged prostate glands, and that proportion increases with advancing age, according to the American Urological Association. Hahnemann University Hospital says it is now offering a novel treatment for the benign but bothersome condition, which blocks the flow of... Read more

Penn study: When drugs fail, there’s still hope for OCD patients

Monday, November 16, 2015, 9:52 AM
Even after two kinds of medication have failed, a type of psychosocial therapy can make a big dent in symptoms for people with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), a new study from the University of Pennsylvania found. The research tested exposure and response prevention therapy in people who were... Read more

In brain cancer, why radiation and not chemotherapy?

Sunday, November 15, 2015, 6:00 AM
Q: I was diagnosed with lung cancer that spread to other organs. Even though the new anti-PD-1 immunotherapy I am receiving continues to shrink these, I was told I now have a couple of spots growing in my brain and need radiation treatments. Can you explain why I will need radiotherapy and not a new... Read more

What's causing her reaction to broccoli?

Sunday, November 15, 2015, 6:00 AM
I was just sitting down to dinner when I got a frantic call from the mother of a 9-year-old girl. The child had taken a bite of broccoli and immediately began crying that her mouth hurt. The broccoli was neither too hot nor too spicy. Both of her sisters had already eaten it with no ill effects. She... Read more

Medicaid denies half of prescriptions for new hepatitis C drugs, Penn study finds

Saturday, November 14, 2015, 9:00 AM
State Medicaid programs in the Philadelphia region denied nearly half the coverage requests for the most effective - and expensive - treatments for chronic hepatitis C, according to a University of Pennsylvania study that will be presented on Monday. The findings, based on prescription data for Pennsylvania... Read more

Fifth Pa. patient dies after getting unusual infection

Thursday, November 12, 2015, 12:12 PM
A fifth open-heart surgery patient has died at a central Pennsylvania hospital after contracting an unusual infection. The patient, who underwent surgery at WellSpan York Hospital, was among eight who became infected in the past several years with nontuberculous mycobacteria - a common, slow-growing... Read more

Along came the spider ...

Wednesday, November 11, 2015, 6:01 PM
Amy Reed knows a lot about calling attention to potential dangers, and a fair amount about spiders. So Tuesday night, when she unwrapped a package of organic grapes from BJ's Wholesale Club in Langhorne and discovered a black widow spider, she knew what to do. Call BJ's. And call the media. Reed... Read more

Virtua team: Pricey new drug no better than old one for knee surgery pain

Wednesday, November 11, 2015, 9:09 AM
A relatively new, brand-name drug was about as effective as a long-available generic at relieving pain after knee replacement despite costing 25 times as much, a team of Virtua Health orthopedists reported, winning a national research award for their small study. Orthopedic surgeon Rajesh K. Jain... Read more

Treating high blood pressure is a marathon, not a SPRINT

Tuesday, November 10, 2015, 10:55 AM
This week, the phones will be ringing off their hooks in my office from anxious patients concerned about the results of the SPRINT trial. Along with results of a second trial published last week in the British journal Lancet, new information suggests that many people with high blood pressure may need... Read more
About this blog

Check Up is a blog for savvy health consumers, covering the latest developments, discoveries, and debates from the Philadelphia area and beyond.

Portions of this blog may also be found in the Inquirer's Sunday Health Section.

Charlotte Sutton Health and Science Editor, Philadelphia Inquirer
Tom Avril Inquirer Staff Writer, heart health and general science
Stacey Burling Inquirer Staff Writer, neuroscience and aging
Marie McCullough Inquirer Staff Writer, cancer and women's health
Don Sapatkin Inquirer Staff Writer, public health, infectious diseases and substance abuse
Justin D'Ancona Philly.com
David Becker, M.D. Board certified cardiologist, Chestnut Hill Temple Cardiology
Michael R. Cohen, R.Ph. President, Institute for Safe Medication Practices
Daniel R. Hoffman, Ph.D. President, Pharmaceutical Business Research Associates
Hooman Noorchashm, M.D., Ph.D. Cardiothoracic surgeon in the Philadelphia area
Amy J. Reed, M.D., Ph.D. Anesthesiologist and Surgical Intensivist in the Philadelphia Area
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