Health Care

A user’s guide to your thyroid

Body temperature. Appetite. Fatigue. You may be surprised to learn that your thyroid, a small, butterfly-shaped body part right below your Adam’s apple controls all of them — and more. Like the control tower at an airport, your thyroid directs the behind-the-scenes actions of your body. The thyroid creates two important hormones called triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4). T3 and T4 are made with the help of iodine, a chemical found in foods including iodized … Read More

How important is early detection in testicular cancer?

Today more than ever, patients, providers and researchers are working together to rethink the basis for early detection of cancer. Taking lessons learned from the cancer survivorship movement, we are appreciating that success isn’t only about improving survival rates, but how patients survive. In most cases, success in early detection means that a patient will survive with less intensive therapy that is more cost effective with less interruption to their quality of life. As a … Read More

Pioneering in-home stroke care

By Darren Larsen, R.N., OHSU Stroke Center Mike Dickinson doesn’t have to go any farther than his home office to see his OHSU neurologist and stroke nurse for checkups. The White City, Ore., resident is part of a pioneering effort to use telemedicine to deliver follow-up care to stroke patients in their homes or nearby clinics. And Dickinson appreciates being able to connect with his Portland-based medical team using his home computer instead of taking time … Read More

Calorie-free thirst quenchers

Now that spring has brought warm, sunny days, do you find yourself craving a cold, refreshing beverage? Beware the liquid calories lurking in many drinks! Calories from fluids typically aren’t filling, meaning you’ll still eat the same amount of food during the day. These liquid calories become “bonus” calories that can easily contribute to unwanted weight gain — not a good thing for your health or the upcoming swimsuit season! Liquid calories include any beverage that … Read More

A Mother’s Day Thank You

Judy Orem always knew she wanted to be a mom.  She and her husband, Frank, built their lives around their two children, Peter and Nancy. When Judy was diagnosed with chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) in 1995, the prognosis was grim. She likely would be dead in five years. But Dr. Brian Druker, a researcher at OHSU, was  launching  testing that would lead to a clinical trial using a drug that would become known as Gleevec®. In January of 1999, she and … Read More

Is chocolate good for your heart?

Cocoa has been long been known for its good taste. But several epidemiological studies and some small prospective studies have shown that cocoa exerts beneficial cardiovascular effects. These beneficial effects seem to be mediated by its polyphenols, especially flavanols, a group of natural chemicals found primarily in fruits and vegetables. The beneficial effects of cocoa include improvement in endothelial function (the lining of your artery wall), the reduction in platelet function (decreasing the chances of a blood clot), and … Read More

How head and neck cancer screenings can save lives

More than 48,000 cancers that occur on a patient’s head or in their throats and mouths are diagnosed in the U.S. every year. Understanding the underlying causes of these cancers, as well as ensuring they are caught early, drives Neil Gross, M.D., to organize free screenings at the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute that draw hundreds of people each year. He shared insights into what he’s learned after holding the screenings, now in their seventh year, and helping … Read More

Put some “Spring” in your step

With the days growing longer, it’s the perfect time to take advantage of spring weather and enjoy the outdoors. As a trainer for OHSU’s March Wellness Center, I see how exercise benefits my clients physically and mentally every day. At age 30, a woman’s bone density starts to decline, and it’s crucial to build that back up. Exercise is one of the best things you can do to rebuild and maintain your bone mineral density. Working out … Read More

Ask the Health Expert: When are statins effective?

You ask. OHSU experts answer. Q: When are statins effective? And what are the side effects? A: Your question is a timely one. Statins are a class of drugs used to lower LDL cholesterol levels, and they’re one of the safest classes of medications that we have. Recently (November of 2013), the American Heart Association and American College of Cardiology published the new national guidelines on the treatment of blood cholesterol to reduce the risk of … Read More

Eight-year-old pneumonia patient recovers close to home thanks to telemedicine

Ryan was one of the sickest patients I had managed in years. Pneumonia was robbing his bloodstream of oxygen, and I was sure I would have to send him to Portland for specialized care. But that didn’t happen. Instead, interactive video technology allowed doctors from OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital to consult on Ryan’s case from a distance. He made a full recovery at Bay Area Hospital, without the expense and family disruption of traveling to Portland. … Read More

OHSU Health Fair at Pioneer Square.

Why 96,000 Square Miles?

President Robertson is fond of saying that OHSU has a 96,000 square mile campus, serving Oregonians “from Enterprise to Coos Bay, from Portland to Klamath Falls.”

This blog aims to highlight that breadth. 96,000 Square Miles (96K for short) will focus on the people of OHSU, the Oregonians we serve and the ripple effect of our work in Oregon and beyond.

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