Health & Spirit

Man has no memory of a freak accident that fractured his spine

Health / Health & Fitness /

LOS ANGELES -- It was Friday night and Vamsi Polisetty was headed to Las Vegas for the weekend. But his bus was late.

The 33-year-old software engineer from Costa Mesa, Calif., waited at the Crowne Plaza Los Angeles International Airport, a 16-story tower less than a quarter-mile from the terminals. While waiting, Polisetty ambled into the ...Read more

Top Obamacare official makes tweaks as insurer complaints grow

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NEW YORK -- To reduce turbulence in Obamacare's fledgling insurance markets, the Obama administration's top health official is pushing to get more information to consumers about what they'll actually pay for health care, which can include out-of-pocket costs as well as premiums.

The changes are meant to help people choose coverage that fits ...Read more

Health-care options as physician shortage looms

Health / Health & Fitness /

The Association of American Medical Colleges projects that the nation will face a shortage of 12,000 to 31,000 primary-care physicians by 2025. So it's no wonder you may be finding it harder to find a doctor or to schedule an appointment with the one you have.

What's fueling this problem? The baby boom generation pouring into older age, an ...Read more

Conservatives want Congress to curb Obamacare aid for insurers

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WASHINGTON -- Conservative groups are pressing Republican leaders in Congress to renew a restriction on the U.S. government's ability to reimburse health insurers for some losses under Obamacare.

Organizations including Heritage Action for America, the Club for Growth and Americans for Tax Reform want the limits added to a broad spending bill ...Read more

Therapeutic riding is so much more than horse play

Health / Health & Fitness /

HUNTINGTON BEACH, Calif. -- Eddie Brennan is all charged up. The hyper 4-year-old, who is autistic, has already charged through a puddle, and writhes as his nanny struggles to remove his shoes and socks.

But when Brennan climbs on the back of Kattie, a dark bay therapy horse, something magical happens.

The kinetic little boy becomes like Jell-...Read more

Study: Food restriction helps mice with kidney disease

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ROCHESTER, Minn. -- Researchers at Mayo Clinic have found that a mild to moderate reduction in calories effectively prevents and reverses polycystic kidney disease (PKD) in mice. The results appear online in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology and could have implications for humans with the disease.

"Currently, there is no FDA-...Read more

Runner didn't let cancer diagnosis beat him in his race to survive

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PHILADELPHIA -- When doctors diagnosed Michael Ross with stage IV colon cancer last September, he didn't ask them to forecast his future. The 44-year-old triathlete was focused on living, not dying.

So a few months after the disease was identified, Ross ran the Rothman Institute's 8K race in the city as he has done for years. Because the event ...Read more

Researchers reduce inflammation in human cells, a major cause of frailty

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ROCHESTER, Minn. -- Chronic inflammation, closely associated with frailty and age-related diseases, is a hallmark of aging. Mayo Clinic researchers have discovered that inhibiting key enzyme pathways reduces inflammation in human cells in culture dishes and decreases inflammation and frailty in aged mice.

The results appear in Proceedings of ...Read more

Deaths from heart disease declining among rheumatoid arthritis patients

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Rheumatoid arthritis patients are twice as likely as the average person to develop heart disease, but a new study shows that efforts to prevent heart problems and diagnose and treat heart disease early may be paying off. Despite the heightened danger, deaths from cardiovascular disease among people with rheumatoid arthritis are declining, the ...Read more

UnitedHealth Group warns it could get out of Obamacare exchanges

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CHICAGO -- UnitedHealth Group, the nation's largest health insurer, warned Thursday that it may exit the Affordable Care Act's exchanges in 2017, a potential blow to President Barack Obama's signature health care law.

The Minnesota-based carrier said its exchange-based business has not met financial expectations. The company said it expects ...Read more

UnitedHealth Group cuts outlook, warns it may exit public health exchanges

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MINNEAPOLIS -- UnitedHealth Group offered a gloomy prognosis on Thursday for government-run health exchanges, and said losses in the market could prompt the nation's largest insurer to withdraw for 2017.

The company also said the difficulties meant its fourth-quarter profit would be smaller than previously forecast.

Shares in UnitedHealth were...Read more

Bar X Project helps vets heal in pristine Montana landscape

Health / Health & Fitness /

The driver should have known better. He was getting too close. The U.S. Marines in Iraq's Anbar province watched warily as the vehicle crept up on their convoy.

They'd seen comrades killed by suicide bombers, IEDs and snipers during tours of duty there and in Afghanistan, so they were on guard, ready to defend themselves.

With the driver ...Read more

Study: Health plan buyers may save money if they shop

Health / Health & Fitness /

You better shop around.

For holiday gifts?

No, for a 2016 health insurance plan on the federal marketplace,

Millions of consumers who are enrolled this year could pay higher rates if they stay in the same health plan next year, according to a study released Wednesday by the Kaiser Family Foundation.

The KFF analysis found ...Read more

Study finds marketplace silver plans offer poor access to HIV drugs

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In most states, consumers with HIV or AIDS who buy silver-level plans on the insurance marketplaces find limited coverage of common drug regimens they may need and high out-of-pocket costs, according to a new analysis.

In 31 states and the District of Columbia, silver-level plans cover fewer than seven of the 10 most common drug treatment ...Read more

Health systems are dipping into the business of selling insurance

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In addition to treating what ails you, a number of health care systems aim to sell you a health insurance plan to pay for it. With some of the most competitively priced policies on the marketplaces, "provider-led" plans can be popular with consumers. But analysts say it remains to be seen how many will succeed long term as insurers.

It's not ...Read more

Obamacare recruiters seek uninsured at food fairs, churches

Health / Health & Fitness /

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- For the past week, Henry Bowles has stood along a busy road here six hours a day holding a sign that reads "Obamacare Help Center- Free Enrollment" and points to a nearby insurance agency.

With sunny skies and temperatures in the high 80s, Bowles uses a towel to grip the wooden stick bearing the sign so his sweaty hand ...Read more

'Do the math' when shopping for a health plan this open enrollment season

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With the health insurance markets open for next year's enrollment, Eve Campeau says she's planning to look carefully at the fine print.

Last time she shopped, she switched to a plan with a lower monthly premium, but found herself paying far more out-of-pocket for medications and doctor visits. While she might be saving money on the premium, she...Read more

Using a weight-loss app? Study of millennials says it doesn't help much

Health / Health & Fitness /

Young American adults own smartphones at a higher rate than any other age group. Researchers from Duke University wanted to see if capitalizing on that smartphone usage with a low-cost weight-loss app might help the 35 percent of young adults in the U.S. who are overweight or obese.

If you're rooting for smartphones to solve all our health ...Read more

Curing cataracts without surgery?

Health / Health & Fitness /

Cataracts are very common. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 20.5 million Americans age 40 and over have them. Cataracts slowly cloud your vision, and people struggling with them say it's like trying to look through a frosted window. Cataracts make it difficult to read or drive a car, especially at night.

Surgery ...Read more

Screen overweight and obese adults for diabetes: task force

Health / Health & Fitness /

Overweight and obese Americans between 40 and 70 years old should be tested for type 2 diabetes, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) now says. The group recommends that patients with abnormal glucose levels be referred to intensive lifestyle counseling.

Being overweight is strongly linked to the development of type 2 diabetes. ...Read more