Houston Matters

Crowdsourcing: Could It Provide a Faster, More Accurate Medical Diagnosis?

Posted on · In recent years, crowdsourcing has surged in popularity as a way to solicit contributions from a large group of people. It can be in the form of needed services, ideas or content. And when it comes to seeking a medical diagnosis, receiving opinions from potentially hundreds of strangers online is convenient, but are they accurate? […]

Houston Matters

Researcher: Barriers Keep Teens from Participating in HIV and STI Studies

Posted on · A recent paper from Rice University argues legal barriers barring adolescents from participating in HIV and STI (sexually transmitted infections) studies should be removed. We talk with one of the authors, Dr. Quianta Moore, a scholar in health policy at Rice University's Baker Institute for Public Policy and adjunct assistant professor in Baylor College of […]

Houston Matters

Do You Have a Concussion? There’s an App for That

Posted on · Growing concern about concussions has led to new rules in various sports, and a new movie starring Will Smith as a crusading doctor. But concussions are not easy injuries to treat – or even diagnose. David Eagleman, a neuroscientist at Houston's Baylor College of Medicine, has developed an iPad app called "BrainCheck." It uses research-backed […]

Houston Matters

Houston Doctor Leads Charge to Raise the Legal Smoking Age

Posted on · You may have heard in the news recently that the American Academy of Pediatrics recommended the purchasing age of cigarettes nationwide should be changed to 21. That recommendation came from a Houston doctor, Harold Farber. He’s associate professor of pediatrics in the section of pulmonary medicine at Baylor College of Medicine and Texas Children's Hospital […]

Houston Matters

Baylor Researchers Hunt for Safe, Male Contraceptive Drug

Posted on · Imagine a colorful cupcake sprinkle in a long glass jar full of thousands of other sprinkles. Which one can you pick that has the right binding properties to stick to the new cupcake icing you've created? Researcher Dr. Martin Matzuk has been thinking about that scenario that for years, or really, he's been imagining the […]

Houston Matters

Treating Bipolar Disorder in Houston

Posted on · Whether you realize it or not, you might know someone battling with a mental illness, because nearly one in five American adults are. One such mental illness is bipolar disorder, which can manifest itself as pretty extreme mood swings, ranging from euphoric or irritable to depressed. We discuss bipolar disorder and how it’s treated in […]

Houston Matters

Why Did Humana Drop Baylor Doctors From Its Network?

Posted on · Health insurer Humana dropped Houston's Baylor College of Medicine from its network back on Aug. 1. Baylor's administrators had been notified in May. Still, they were surprised it wasn't just a negotiating ploy. It also caught some doctors and patients off guard. The move terminated HMO, PPO and point of service plans. As the Houston […]

Houston Matters

Medicare and Medicaid: Past, Present and Future in Texas

Posted on · Medicare and Medicaid turn 50 years old today. It was on this date in 1965 that then President Lyndon Johnson signed into law Amendments to the Social Security Act, which established these two federal health programs. We discuss the legacy of Medicare and Medicaid for Houstonians with Helen Valier, a medical historian at the University […]

Houston Matters

Lex Frieden on the ADA and the Past, Present, and Future of Disability Rights

Posted on · This Sunday marks the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The landmark legislation, signed into law on July 26, 1990 by President George H.W. Bush, prohibits discrimination and ensures equal opportunities for disabled Americans in "employment, government services, public accommodations, commercial facilities, and transportation." On this edition of Houston Matters, we talk with […]

Houston Matters

Working the Early Shift: The Life and Health of Houston’s Early Risers

Posted on · For most Houstonians, life follows a fairly predictable schedule. Wake up around sunrise, work or go to school during the day, run errands, socialize, or decompress at night, then sleep, and start all over again. But that pattern – and the environment that is Houston – looks and feels very different if you work the […]

Houston Matters

What’s the Best Way to Hear Bad News About Your Health?

Posted on · When something abnormal comes up in a medical test, would you like to hear the news immediately from the lab or later from your doctor? Researchers at the Houston Veterans Affairs Center for Innovations in Quality, Effectiveness and Safety recently conducted studies to determine whether patients and doctors agree on how abnormal test results should […]

Family Business

The Family Business: Sons Becoming Doctors, Like Their Father

Posted on · From time to time, we talk with Houstonians who have followed in previous generations’ footsteps about the opportunities and challenges inherent in going into the family business. Today, Maggie Martin talks with a father, Dr. Yochai Birnbaum, a professor of medicine in cardiology at Baylor College of Medicine, and his two sons, Itamar and Gilad […]