Baby Boomers Should Get Tested for Hepatitis C!

According to the CDC, all “Baby Boomers” should get tested for hepatitis C. This is based only on age and for this recommendation Baby Boomers are defined as those born between 1945 and 1965

Hepatitis C (HCV) is a viral infection of the liver that can lead to cirrhosis, liver cancer, liver transplant, and death. It has been found to be very common in this age group, and, as they age, the consequences of the infection can be more severe and be irreversible before there are any symptoms at all!

The CDC also recommends that people who test positive for HCV be counseled about alcohol intake and referred to a liver disease specialist, who is familiar with the treatments available. This is particularly important now for several reasons.

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Your bag can help tone your abdomen and back

While you are carrying anything, in any position, stand up straight as if you are carrying nothing.  While walking in the city, you can look at yourself in store windows to be sure your posture is 100% upright.

When you are carrying a bag on one side, by standing up straight, you are using the muscles that form your waist line and support breathing muscles.  If you are carrying a bag on one side, switch sides regularly, every 5-10 blocks.

When you are wearing a backpack, by standing up straight rather than leaning forward, you use more muscles in front, including your “six pack.”

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‘Kidney Swap’ Program Increases Living Donations

When former New York Jets running back Dennis Bligen was diagnosed with focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS) in 2011, and told by doctors that he needed a new kidney, the news came as a shock.

For his long-time friend, Jill Christensen—who worked with him in the athletics department at St. John’s University in Queens, N.Y.—the news was a call to action. “I just knew I would get tested [to become a donor],” she says. But it turned out that Ms. Christensen’s kidneys were not an appropriate match.

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Neonatal Transplants Save Lives

It was the longest drive of Kelly Smith’s life: four hours in an ambulance from Syracuse, N.Y., to The Mount Sinai Hospital beside her 9-day-old daughter, Matilda, who was critically ill. Seemingly healthy on the day she was born in early September, Matilda had become lethargic and sick after nursing only a few days later. Tests in Syracuse revealed acute neonatal liver failure—a rare, life-threatening condition. Matilda’s best hope was a liver transplant.

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Finding Comfort in Knitted Blankets

Three years ago, Sharon Jones began knitting as a way to ease the pain she felt after losing her 17-year-old son Andrew in a car crash in 2007. “When you lose a child, it doesn’t go away,” says Ms. Jones, a Manager of Grants and Contracts in The Mount Sinai Medical Center’s Department of Pediatrics. “The knitting keeps me thinking about something else.”

The knowledge that Andrew was an organ donor, who helped many recipients, provides solace, as well. So when Ms. Jones recently learned about “Sean’s Gift,” a national initiative to give handmade blankets to the families of deceased organ donors, she decided to turn the lunchtime knitting club she had started at Mount Sinai a year-and-a-half ago into a similar initiative here.

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Questions and Answers About Organ Donation

Every 15 hours, someone in New York State dies waiting for an organ transplant. The shortage of available organs is so severe that in 2012, as many as 9,914 people were listed as waiting for transplants in New York State, for which there were only 358 deceased donors and 481 living donors, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. One donor can save up to eight lives.

The New York Organ Donor Network (NYODN), a federally designated organ procurement organization, and one of the nation’s largest, serves a diverse population of 13 million people in the New York metropolitan area. The organization facilitates donation with The Mount Sinai Medical Center’s Recanati/Miller Transplantation Institute, nine other transplant centers, and more than 90 hospitals in the region.

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Leadership in Scientific Education

The Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences has been training many of our nation’s finest scientists for more than four decades and inspiring them to translate their discoveries into effective treatments for human diseases.

Today, Mount Sinai is a leader in bringing “big data” to biomedical sciences, both in our laboratories and in our classrooms. By connecting with the Icahn Institute for Genomics and Multiscale Biology, the Graduate School has developed innovative courses that teach students how to use the new frontier of computational genomics in the laboratory setting. Many of our most devastating diseases are due to complex changes in our genes and how they interact with our environment. Our students learn how to embrace this complexity.

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