A new program called the Chicago South Side Trauma First Responders Course will train anyone to give lifesaving treatment to trauma victims. Mamta Swaroop, MD, ’10 GME, assistant professor of Surgery in Trauma and Critical Care, joined forces with advocate group Cure Violence in the hopes that simple steps taken immediately after a shooting or other violent event can save lives before an ambulance even arrives. “We asked people about what their experiences were with violence and with trauma,” Swaroop said. Many said they had lived through violent events in which they had no knowledge of how to respond to traumatic injuries. “[They] feel helpless in that situation.”
Clinical psychologist Inger Burnett-Zeigler, ’09 PhD, assistant professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, described how many of her patients came to therapy with anxiety, fear and worry after the presidential election. “It’s obvious to me that this highly contested election is already having real mental health consequences. Several people who had not demonstrated overt distress prior to election night began wrestling with the question: what does this mean for me? They wondered aloud about changes in government funding priorities that might affect their job security and ability to get healthcare,” she wrote.
Actor Ben Stiller shared his experience being diagnosed with prostate cancer in June 2014 after taking a prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test. Edward Schaeffer, MD, chair of Urology, performed a robotic assisted laparoscopic radical prostatectomy to remove Stiller’s cancer. “The PSA test is a powerful tool that has to be used and interpreted in the right way,” Schaeffer said. “Whether or not to get the test should be a shared decision-making process with a man and his doctor.”
People who reach middle age without developing high blood pressure, diabetes or obesity may have a lower risk of heart failure later in life, a recent study suggests. “The benefits of preventing the onset of the risk factors themselves often far exceeds the benefits experienced through treatment of the risk factors after they’ve developed,” said John Wilkins, MD, ’12 GME, assistant professor of Medicine in the Division of Cardiology, who led the research.
DOCTOR USES MAGIC TO HEAL, TEACH AND ENTERTAIN
WTTW Chicago Tonight
By trade, Ricardo Rosenkranz, MD, ’93, ’96 MD, clinical assistant professor of Pediatrics in Community Based Primary Care, is a neonatologist, specializing in the care of premature babies. But his other great passion is magic. “Almost every magical effect is about transformation. And so much of medicine is about transformation,” he explained in an interview about the one-man stage show he performed this winter, “The Rosenkranz Mysteries,” which looked at the connection between magic and medicine.
Katherine O’Brien, MD, geriatric medicine fellow, and June McKoy, MD, ’01 GME, associate professor of Medicine and Preventive Medicine, suggest that house calls can be an effective way to provide medical care geriatric patients. “If the house call is to truly make a comeback — and it should for both patient convenience and cost — training programs and the organizations that oversee them must revolutionize their curricula to help young physicians develop the skills necessary for home care medicine,” they wrote.
Inhaling activates a critical area in the brain, according to new research. “We found that the act of breathing in increases activity in parts of the brain that are important for smell, emotion and memory. This could in part be due to the fact that when you breathe through your nose, you activate smell neurons, which activate the parts of the brain that are important for sense of smell,” said lead author Christina Zelano, PhD, assistant professor of Neurology during a broadcast interview.
A HEARING TEST MAY BE ABLE TO IDENTIFY A CONCUSSION
By measuring the brain’s electrical reactions to speech sounds, researchers were able to identify children who had suffered a recent concussion with 90 percent accuracy and those who hadn’t with 95 percent accuracy. “[Auditory processing] is the most precise, most complicated computational work the brain has to do. So it’s not surprising that auditory processing can be used as a measure of brain health,” said Nina Kraus, ’80 PhD, professor of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery, who led the research.
CAN PSYCHIATRIC DRUGS BLUNT THE MOTHER-BABY BOND?
The New York Times
“Mothers who have depression and other mental health symptoms tend to have less positive facial expressions, less verbalizations, and even engage in certain types of behaviors that don’t always focus on the safety of the child in the same way,” said Sheehan Fisher, PhD, ’12 GME, professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, in a Q&A. “What our focus is on is how do we best treat the mother so that her symptoms don’t get in the way of her being able to bond with the child and the impact that can have on the infant long-term.”
The fall 2016 issue of Northwestern Medicine Magazine featured a group of seniors in their 80s, 90s and beyond who have remarkable memory power. Now research shows that these “SuperAgers” can have numerous amyloid plaques in their brains — hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease — yet their memory is unaffected. “It appears that some elderly individuals are immune to the effects of Alzheimer’s pathology,” said neurologist Changiz Geula, PhD, research professor in the Cognitive Neurology and Alzheimer’s Disease Center, who conducted the new research.