Kelli Deister, shown in her Sunbury, Pa., apartment, is legally blind suffers from retinitis pigmentosa.

Can embryonic stem cells help stop blindness?

From electronic implants to stem cells, University of Pittsburgh researchers and others seek ways to halt blindness.

about 1 hour ago

 Nurse Barbara McQuaid, left,  and Jana Medina, both volunteers with the Honor Escorts program, fold up an American flag after a training run through at the Pittsburgh VA Hospital on Friday. The program involves volunteers escorting veterans on an American flag-covered gurney from the room where they die to the facilities' morgue. Volunteers for the program have been training in recent weeks to prepare hospital staff to stand at attention when a deceased patient is escorted through the hallways.

'Honor escort' at Pittsburgh VAs begins new rite when veterans die

A new "Honors Escort" program will include draping an American flag on the gurney carrying a deceased veteran with escorts by its side.

1 day ago

More than 50 sickened in salmonella outbreak in nine states

Ten people have been hospitalized but no deaths have been reported, according to federal health officials.

1 day ago

 West Penn Hospital in Bloomfield and many others around the state are operating in the red.

Many Pennsylvania hospitals aren't getting paid for care they provide, report finds

The most notable Pittsburgh-area hospitals with negative operating margins were West Penn in Bloomfield and Forbes in Monroeville.

3 days ago

 The findings come less than a year after the suicide of Robin Williams, who had battled depression and was in the early stages of Parkinson’s at the time of his death.

Study suggests depression is precursor to Parkinson’s disease

The more severe the depression, as measured by hospitalizations and other treatment, the higher the risk of Parkinson’s, researchers found.

3 days ago

 Lovie Blackman, 11, a fifth-grader from Sheraden, reacts to her increased heartbeat being shown on a computer during a demonstration by Mike Hennessy, program development coordinator at the Carnegie Science Center.

Carnegie Science Center, AHN introduce educational program on anatomy

The BodyWorks program is targeted at upper-level elementary and middle school students.

3 days ago

Ligonier Valley School District reports case of MRSA at elementary school

MRSA -- methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus -- is a type of staph infection that cannot be treated with many standard antibiotics.

3 days ago

4 cancer charities accused in FTC fraud case

Federal authorities and all 50 states are accusing them of deceiving donors and diverting close to $190 million for personal expenses.

4 days ago

 Maggie Schneider, who has MS, rides with her Maggie Maurauder’s team in last year's MS 150-Keystone Country Ride.

Bicyclists go the distance to support MS research

The Keystone Country Ride is a favorite for bike touring in Central Pennsylvania.

5 days ago

 Rocky Tuan, director of the Center for Cellular and Molecular Engineering at the Pitt/UPMC McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine, says that using tissue chips in testing for toxicity replaces using animals in tests.

University of Pittsburgh developing technology to test chemicals for toxicity

Vanderbilt and the University of Pittsburgh land $6 million Environmental Protection Agency grant to develop ways to test chemical toxicity.

5 days ago

Health happenings for week of May 19

Special events

5 days ago

 “We ought to let doctors prescribe the medications that they think their patients need,” Gov. Tom Wolf said Monday.

Medical marijuana use in Pa. debated at governor's residence

Gov. Tom Wolf hosted legalization advocates on Monday to “get the facts out.”

5 days ago

 In a recent study, a CMU professor found that couples who increased their frequency of sex had a slightly lower happiness level than couples whose sexual frequency remained unchanged. “They were, if anything, less happy,” said George Loewenstein, a professor of economics and psychology. “They ended up wanting sex less and enjoying the sex that they did have less.”

Does more sex make couples happier? Study's results dispute CMU professor's expectations

Carnegie Mellon professor George Loewenstein said results of a “sex and happiness“ study on married couples may not reflect real life.

6 days ago

Nation briefs: Apple CEO tells grads to fight injustice

Plus: Rapper killed in NYC, Bird flu spreads in U.S., Central U.S. hit by floods

6 days ago

State Supreme Court hears 'wrongful life' case

Montgomery County couple challenges law that bars parents from suing a doctor for failing to inform them about possible birth defects.

1 week ago

 Flora Harris, 56, talks with Betty Charles as they make their way  through part of Bedford Dwelling in the Hill District. Ms. Harris is a neighbor and friend who works as an aide for Ms. Charles, 71, who is mostly in a wheelchair.

Home-care program lets friends help friends

Participant-directed program is facing unusual attention in Harrisburg this year.

1 week ago

Botox injection to heart may erase rhythm issues

In a small study of heart bypass patients, surgeons injected the paralyzing toxin into fat pads that can build up around the heart.

1 week ago

Fund set up for Derry Township 4-year-old awaiting transplants

Angelo Giomo, who has short bowel syndrome, needs a small intestine transplant and a liver transplant.

1 week ago

 The Rev. Matthew Elanjileth, left, talks with Mark Sevco, president of UPMC McKeesport and UPMC East, at the UPMC McKeesport Wall of Fame ribbon cutting May 8.

History Hallway tells McKeesport hospital's story

The Castle on the Hill opened in 1894 as the first hospital in McKeesport and today is UPMC McKeesport.

1 week ago

 Scott Fulmer and his son, Brandon, 18, who has cystic fibrosis.

Hike to raise awareness for cystic fibrosis

A local father shows support for his son by taking a long hike through the Laurel Highlands.

1 week ago

Cross-country walk to benefit bone marrow transplants

By crossing the country, Jared Reichbaum is crossing an item off of his bucket list.

1 week ago

 More than a half-million Americans had medication costs in excess of $50,000 last year, a 63 percent increase since 2013.

'Specialty drugs' making up larger percentage of prescription costs

And many of the “super spenders” are spending on a highly effective -- and expensive -- treatment for hepatitis C.

1 week ago

House passes abortion ban after dropping rape language criticized by GOP women

House bans later-term abortions after yanking an earlier version that drew objections from the ranks of Republic women.

1 week ago

 A January 2014 study by the Kaiser Family Foundation estimated 1 in 3 Americans had trouble paying their medical bills the previous year.

Are health plans with high deductibles becoming more popular?

Such plans are based on the belief that patients who bear more financial responsibility will be more responsible about treatment choices.

1 week ago

95 percent of parents: Their overweight kids look ‘just right’

The chances of a child “being appropriately perceived” has declined 30 percent over two decades.

1 week ago

 Laura Skinger, who teaches at California Cycle Path in Brighton Heights, poses for a portrait.

Beaver County woman serves as an inspiration to those battling obesity

Laura Skinger took a bad situation with overweight and serious health issues, and turned it around with hard work.

1 week ago

 John Bratton, co-owner of California Cycle Path in Brighton Heights, poses for a photo inside the workout studio.

The key to exercise success: Find a gym that fits your lifestyle

Two Brighton Heights residents take a leap into the gym business and open California Cycle Path.

1 week ago

 Authors of a recent Journal of the American Medical Association article say expanding organ procurement to out-of-hospital or emergency-department deaths could "put a dent" in the organ waiting list.

Is a wider push in store for organ donation?

A recent medical article says earlier requests to families of people who die outside of hospitals would help urgent need for organ donation.

1 week ago

Indoor cyclists can join Tour de Cure

Virtual indoor cycling tour of the American Diabetes Association’s Pittsburgh Tour de Cure will take place at five local gyms May 17.

1 week ago

Drug-resistant strain of ‘superbug’ typhoid spreads worldwide

An antibiotic-resistant typhoid fever “superbug” is spreading globally, according to findings of 74 scientists in almost two dozen

1 week ago

Health happenings around Pittsburgh

Health-related events: May 12, 2015.

1 week ago

WHO declares Liberia to be free of Ebola

The World Health Organization said Saturday that the west African nation has not had any new cases of Ebola in 42 days.

2 weeks ago

 A volunteer for Prevention Point Pittsburgh holds a needle and ascorbic acid while preparing injection equipment provided at Prevention Point's Oakland clinic. Prevention Point offers services to drug users to reduce risks, such as HIV and hepatitis C, related to injection drugs.

State law prohibits needle exchanges

In Pennsylvania, distributing sterile syringes is a criminal act.

2 weeks ago

FDA unaware of listeria in Blue Bell plant before outbreak

An Oklahoma ice cream plant found listeria bacteria in its facility back in 2013, but the FDA said it was unaware of these findings.

2 weeks ago

New look at benefits of measles vaccination

Measles shots may be more protective than previously thought.

2 weeks ago

 According to Health Department statistics, 20 percent of the 9,000 food facilities it inspects have had at least one high-risk code violation that could cause a food-borne illness.

County health board bringing back food safety committee

Despite county council’s 12-1 vote against the grading system, the health board voted to re-establish a food safety advisory committee.

2 weeks ago

 “Treadmill injuries actually are quite common,” said Louis H. Alarcon, medical director of trauma surgery at UPMC Presbyterian.

Pittsburgh doctors weigh in on dangers of treadmills

In light of the death of a Facebook executive’s husband, experts warn of the high risk of using the exercise machines.

2 weeks ago

 Last week, state regulators asked the courts to force UPMC and Highmark into arbitration to resolve alleged violations of state-mediated agreements governing their breakup in January.

Highmark settles with UPMC on bill claims

The ongoing dispute between the region's health care giants had interfered with the payment of about 3 percent of more than 900,000 claims.

2 weeks ago

 Denise O'Connor, left, is the founder and president of Three Rivers Mothers' Milk Bank. Here, she poses for a picture with Dr. Alan Lantzy, a neonatologist at West Penn Hospital, in December 2013.

Pittsburgh breast milk bank could open in Strip District by fall

The Pittsburgh-based breast milk bank will service neonatal intensive care units in Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

2 weeks ago

 FILE - In this Sept. 16, 2014, file photo, Sen. Dean Heller, R-Nev., speaks at a hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington. Troubled by delays in handling of veterans claims, a bipartisan group of senators is seeking a wide-scale independent review of the Department of Veterans Affairs for mismanagement and changes to improve budgeting and speed up applications. "The VA system again finds itself engulfed in another scandal," said Heller, co-chair of the Senate's VA backlog working group. VA offices nationwide are suffering from poor management, he said, proving "it is time for an overhaul of the entire system." (AP Photo/Lauren Victoria Burke, File)

Senators seek wide-scale VA probe on mishandled claims

The senators said recent findings of mismanagement at the Philadelphia VA might point to a broader, department-wide problem.

2 weeks ago

Pitt study connects diabetes, premature brain aging

Middle-aged type 1 diabetics had more severe brain abnormalities than a similarly aged control group without the disease.

2 weeks ago

Komen Race online deadline today

The 23rd annual Komen Pittsburgh Race for the Cure expects to draw 23,000 participants on Mother’s Day.

2 weeks ago

 Kristi Reynolds plays a game with her three boys, Isaac, 8, Timothy, 2 months, and Noah 6. Mrs. Reynolds had Timothy via C-section at West Penn Hospital in February.

Can Pittsburgh hospitals offer 'gentler' C-sections?

Many hospitals are embracing new procedures, including placing babies with their mothers within minutes of birth, as “a culture change.”

2 weeks ago

 Dr. Oscar Lopez, Alzheimer's researcher at the University of Pittsburgh

Pitt researchers find some hope in Alzheimer's studies

The new research is examining both treatment and prevention, using the latest technology of imaging a person’s brain.

2 weeks ago

 The Allegheny County Council on Tuesday rejected a plan to start posting health inspection grades on restaurant doors.

Controversial restaurant health-grading plan rejected

The measure requiring restaurants to post A-B-C letter grades on health inspections failed in a 12-1 vote of Allegheny County Council.

2 weeks ago

 A plume of steam billows from the coal-fired Merrimack Station in Bow, N.H.

Study connects emission cuts to reduction of early deaths

Peer-reviewed study finds health co-benefits would result from implementing the controversial federal Clean Power Plant Rule

2 weeks ago

 Seven young Pittsburgh-area residents who are a part of the “ADA generation" participated in a panel discussion Monday night.

The ADA at 25: Pittsburgh-area disabled adults say act made difference in their lives

But advocates are stressing the need for further progress.

2 weeks ago

University of Pittsburgh finds zinc to be important in brain signaling

University of Pittsburgh and MIT say zinc helps modulate neural signaling in the brain, adding a new tool to help understand brain diseases.

2 weeks ago

Health happenings for Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Excela Health and the Latrobe Rotary will hold a a Wellness Check diagnostic screening Saturday at the Latrobe Municipal Building.

2 weeks ago

 Ben Carson

Retired surgeon Ben Carson announces bid for presidency

He has become a conservative favorite on the strength of his motivational life story and strong opposition to President Barack Obama.

2 weeks ago


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