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Womens Health
 

  • Breast cancer screening: Options beyond the mammogram

    The mammogram remains the foundation of breast cancer screening, but variations on this test can improve detection for some women. The mammogram isn’t a perfect test, but it’s the best one we have right now for identifying breast cancers early, which is why it remains the cornerstone of breast cancer detection. “For the woman at […]

  • Latest thinking on mammograms for older women

    Latest thinking on mammograms for older women

    New evidence shows the tests may benefit women older than age 75. Just as it is for younger women, routine breast cancer screening for older women is debated. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommends against routine mammograms for women 75 and older at average risk of breast cancer. But the American Cancer Society […]

  • Too little — or too much — sleep linked to dementia risk

    Too little — or too much — sleep linked to dementia risk

    Participants in the Women’s Health Initiative Memory Study (WHIMS) have provided a trove of information. They completed monthly questionnaires and underwent cognitive tests. Those who showed significant decline were also tested for dementia. Recently, researchers analyzed data from 7,444 participants over 65. They had followed the women an average of seven years. Their report was […]

  • Can women get away with less frequent bone density screenings?

    Can women get away with less frequent bone density screenings?

    A study by researchers at Harvard-affiliated Hebrew SeniorLife questions whether older adults might be getting bone mineral density (BMD) tests too often. The study of 492 women and 310 men (average age 75) found that having a second scan four years after the initial baseline test didn’t provide any additional information on fracture risk that […]

  • Younger women get inadequate treatment for heart disease, survey finds

    Younger women with heart disease may be unaware of their condition and may not recognize the symptoms of a heart attack, according to a report in the March 2015 issue of Circulation. The finding came from a survey of women under 55 who had survived heart attacks. Researchers from the Translational Research Investigating Underlying Disparities […]

  • The top 5 tests you probably don’t need, from the October 2013 Harvard Health Letter

    The top 5 tests you probably don’t need, from the October 2013 Harvard Health Letter

    Some health tests, such as colonoscopies and cholesterol checks, are wise preventive measures. Others aren’t, and may be unnecessary, reports the October 2013 Harvard Health Letter. “I think we’re doing too much screening,” says geriatrician Dr. Suzanne Salamon, an instructor at Harvard Medical School. Screening means checking seeming healthy individuals for hidden disease. Sometimes it […]

  • Mammograms identify heart disease risk

    Mammograms identify heart disease risk

    Research We’re Watching Image: Frans Rombout/Thinkstock When specks of calcium appear in ductal tissue on mammograms, they can indicate a small cancer. But when calcifications are found in the breast arteries, they haven’t been a cause for concern. However, in recent years, physicians have begun to suspect that arterial calcifications in the breast, like calcifications […]

  • What’s the story with Fosamax?

    What’s the story with Fosamax?

    Recent reports have women wondering if they should stop taking this widely prescribed osteoporosis drug. In 1995, the FDA approved alendronate (Fosamax) for the treatment of postmenopausal osteoporosis, a bone-weakening condition that affects more than eight million women and causes 1.5 million fractures each year in the United States. Fosamax increases bone mineral density and […]

  • Other options better than vitamin D for knee arthritis

    Other options better than vitamin D for knee arthritis

    We’ve known for some time that vitamin D—along with calcium—can help shore up our bones and protect against osteoporosis. More recently, researchers have wondered whether this vitamin might also slow the progression of knee osteoarthritis. A study published January 9 in The Journal of the American Medical Association randomly assigned 146 people with knee osteoarthritis […]

  • Update on vibration therapy for bone health

    Update on vibration therapy for bone health

    Can gentle vibration improve bone density and prevent fractures after menopause? Soon you may be hearing a lot about low-intensity vibration therapy for strengthening bones and reducing the risk of fractures. Two low-intensity oscillating devices designed for home use are coming onto the market, and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), which advises […]

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