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news-and-notes

Chronic stress, depressive symptoms, and hostility associated with increased risk of stroke

Photo courtesy Flickr user hapal

A new study from the University of Minnesota links negative emotions with significantly increased risk of stroke or transient ischemic attacks (TIAs, or mini strokes) in middle-aged and older adults.

The results are published in the latest edition of the American Heart Association journal Stroke.

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research-and-clinical-trials

New compound shows promise in treating chronic pain

Photo: Geraint Rowland/Flickr CC 3.0/flic.kr/p/82icD5

A new compound in development at the University of Minnesota shows promise as a breakthrough drug for treating chronic pain.

The new compound, developed by Philip Portoghese, Ph.D., of the University of Minnesota’s College of Pharmacy, appears to be the first of its kind. A patent has been applied for, and the University’s Center for Translational Medicine has been conducting proof-of-concept studies. As a potential medication, the compound offers benefits lacked by current medications: It does not induce the body to develop tolerance or dependence, as opioid painkillers do. It is more potent than other opioid pain medications. It reduces and inhibits neuropathic pain, post-operative pain, burn pain, spinal injury pain and inflammation.

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research-and-clinical-trials

Advanced imaging technology aiding in prostate cancer screenings

The 7T magnet provides a higher picture resolution and more clearly visible detail.

According to the American Cancer Society, prostate cancer is the second most common cancer among men after skin cancer. Despite the grim reality of a positive cancer diagnosis, prostate cancer can often be treated effectively if discovered early.

At the Center for Magnetic Resonance Research (CMRR) at the University of Minnesota, researchers are utilizing robust magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technology to better diagnose and follow patients with prostate cancer.

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patient-care

Study urges reduction in use of routine pelvic exams for women

Photo courtesy Flickr user Maggie Osterberg

After reviewing 52 past studies, researchers from the University of Minnesota and VA found little evidence to support routine pelvic exams for average-risk women with no gynecological symptoms, other than for cervical cancer screening.

For decades, providers and patients alike recognized pelvic exams as a part of a woman’s routine health exams. The study recently published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, has led to a new clinical practice guideline being issued by the American College of Physicians.

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expert-perspectives

U of M expert: Maximize your health through diet and exercise

Courtesy: Arya Ziai, Flickr

Regular exercise is extremely important for people of all ages in order to stay healthy, whether it’s running a marathon or simply setting aside time to power walk a few times per week. But knowing when to eat, what to eat and what exercises are safe at a given age can have a major impact on how someone gains muscle or loses excess fat.

In order to fully understand some variables that impact the effectiveness of a diet and exercise routine, Health Talk consulted David Jewison, M.D. in the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery.

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education

50 years out: Will your genes define your Rx?

Photo: Flickr user net_efekt/CC 2.0/flic.kr/p/4ahq13

Tylenol should relieve pain, cough suppressants should ease cough and serious ailments should reliably respond to vital medication. But when a prescribed medicine doesn’t do its intended job, it can be difficult to decide who or what is to blame.

It doesn’t help that sometimes the problem doesn’t lie within the medicine or the doctor; it can lie within your genes.

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