One of the more surprising — and genuinely scary — research papers published recently appeared in JAMA Internal Medicine. It examined 10 years of data involving tens of thousands of hospital admissions. It found that patients with acute, life-threatening cardiac conditions did better when the senior cardiologists were out of town

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When Charles Thompson checked into the hospital one July morning in 2011, he expected a standard colonoscopy. He never anticipated how wrong things would go.

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As many as 60,000 American women each year are told they have a very early stage of breast cancer — Stage 0, as it is commonly known — a possible precursor to what could be a deadly tumor. And almost every one of the women has either a lumpectomy or a mastectomy, and often a double mastectomy, removing a healthy breast as well

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Overall, 26 percent of the visits by women with Medicaid included at least one of five services, compared with 31 percent of the visits by privately insured women

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In February, Medicare announced that it would pay for an annual lung cancer screening test for certain long-term smokers. Medicare recipients between the ages of 55 and 77 who have smoked the equivalent of a pack a day for 30 years are now eligible for the annual test, known as a spiral CT scan

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Developed by medical faculty at Duke, the University of Pittsburgh and several other medical schools, “Oncotalk” is part of a burgeoning effort to teach doctors an essential but often overlooked skill: clinical empathy

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For three years, Dr. Robert Green, a researcher at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School, has been painstakingly gathering genetic data on thousands of Alzheimer’s patients, trying to figure out whether genetic differences explain why the disease progresses over a quarter century in some people and kills others within five years

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A study in the New England Journal of Medicine casts doubt on whether increased access to Medicaid results in better health outcomes, and media on both sides of the aisle have been quick to spin the results

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