Thyroid Nodules: Common, but Most Are Noncancerous

Typing “thyroid nodule” into Google generates more than 683,000 results. Lumps and bumps in the thyroid are exceedingly common, especially in women. By age 50, up to 70 percent of women have one or more thyroid nodules, the vast majority of these are noncancerous. In fact, of all thyroid nodules, up to 95 percent are ultimately characterized as benign.

Largely because of the increased use of radiologic imaging, the incidence of thyroid nodules, and the incidence of thyroid cancer, is increasing. Though this (possibly artificial) rise in thyroid cancer may seem alarming, the fact is that even if a nodule is cancerous, thyroid cancer is by far one of the most curable cancers. In fact, cure rates for the two most common types of thyroid cancer are in the high 90 percentile range, approaching 100 percent. The American Cancer Society estimates that of the nearly 63,000 cases of all types of thyroid cancer occurring in the U.S. each year, and fewer than 1,900 result in mortality. Read more

Cooking Classes Help Cancer Survivors Make Nutrition Changes

When Ann Ogden was first diagnosed with kidney cancer in 2001, she had no idea that creating a cooking network for cancer patients would someday become her great life’s work. Ann was, professionally, a fashion designer, but she found her culinary knowledge to be particularly useful while managing the side effects of treatment for a later diagnosed breast cancer. She would swap recipes with other patients, who found her guidance helpful and encouraged her to do more with her skills. In 2007, Cook for Your Life–a website dedicated to providing healthy recipes, cooking tips and nutrition information to cancer survivors–was born. Read more

Tips for curbing a sugar habit in the New Year

If you think you eat too much sugar, you probably do, and you’re not alone in satisfying your sweet tooth. This infographic illustrates the extent to which Americans overindulge. On average, Americans consume 765 grams sugar, the equivalent of 17 12-ounce sodas every 5 days. Our typical intake is 22 teaspoons of sugar per day, compared to the American Heart Association recommendation of no more than 9.5 teaspoons. Read more

Learning About Stroke

In Herald Square, on Wednesday, October 29—World Stroke Day—staff from The Mount Sinai Hospital, World Stroke Organization, and Covidien provided free blood pressure screenings, answered questions about stroke, and helped launch a global “Take 2…Tell 2” campaign. “This initiative encourages people to educate themselves and others by taking two minutes to learn about stroke risk factors, warning signs, and symptoms, and spending two minutes sharing that information,” says Stephan A. Mayer, MD, Founding Director, Institute for Critical Care Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.

Realistic Resolutions for the New Year

A new year is the perfect time to set goals and make positive changes in our lives. But, if you’re like the majority of us, these good intentions tend to fall by the wayside long before the winter snow starts to melt. This can happen if we set expectations too high or try to make drastic changes – it’s easy to get discouraged this way and abandon our plans. This year, try making smaller, more sustainable changes, which can add up big time over the course of the year! Here are some of our favorites: Read more

Nutrition Tips for Holiday Parties

‘Tis the season for treats – eggnog, cookies, fruitcakes, fancy cocktails – the list is endless. Pair holiday menus with a packed party schedule and not enough exercise time, and it’s no wonder we tend to see the scales creep up by the end of December. Here are our tips to get through those holiday parties healthfully.

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Medicare’s $5 Billion Ambulance Tab Signals Area of Abuse

A Bloomberg article noted: “The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has identified ambulance service as one of the biggest areas of overuse and abuse in Medicare — companies billing millions for trips by patients who can walk, sit, stand or even drive their own cars.”

“‘It’s a cash cow,’ said Assistant U.S. Attorney Beth Leahy … ‘It’s basically like a taxi service except an extremely expensive one that the taxpayers are financing.’” Read more

Treating and Beating Winter Laryngitis

It’s that time of year when the temperature drops, the weather changes and we all begin to get colds or the flu. With these upper respiratory infections come fatigue, muscle aches, sneezing, coughing, and often laryngitis. The laryngitis may be the most debilitating aspect of the illness because it can be painful and rob us of our ability to communicate, socialize, and work.

“The symptoms of laryngitis can be caused by numerous factors,” says Michael Pitman, MD, Director, Voice and Swallowing Institute at New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai. “The most common cause is a viral upper respiratory infection. Vocal abuse in the form of smoking or yelling also commonly leads to laryngitis.”

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Injured Good Samaritan Billed $165,000 by Aetna For “Out-of-Network” Care

An Arizona Central article noted: “Cliff Faraci sustained first-, second- and third-degree burns after trying to save a teen girl after a car accident in March 2013. He stayed in a hospital burn unit for a week to get treatment for his injuries. Days later, Aetna told him it wouldn’t cover the stay.”

“Cliff Faraci suffered first-, second- and third-degree burns trying to rescue girl from a deadly accident last year. His insurance company denied his claims and hit him with a $165,000 bill, saying his injuries were not severe enough to require acute-care treatment for a week.” Read more