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Health & Medicine Archives | OUPblog

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Living with multiple sclerosis

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is widely thought to be a disease of immune dysfunction, whereby the immune system becomes activated to attack components of the nerves in the brain, spinal cord and optic nerve. New information about environmental factors and lifestyle are giving persons with MS and their health care providers new tools…

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9780199393275

Can marijuana prevent memory decline?

Can smoking marijuana prevent the memory loss associated with normal aging or Alzheimer’s disease? This is a question that I have been investigating for the past ten years. The concept of medical marijuana is not a new one. A Chinese pharmacy book, written about 2737 BCE, was probably the first to mention its use as a medicine for the treatment of gout, rheumatism, malaria, constipation, and (ironically) absent-mindedness.

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Reflections on the Reith Lectures: the future of medicine

The Reith lectures were inaugurated in 1948 by the BBC to celebrate and commemorate Lord Reith’s major contribution to British broadcasting. Many distinguished names are to be found in the alumni of lecturers, whose origins are not confined to this sceptred isle in which the concept of these educational thought provoking radio talks were conceived.

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Jonas Salk Book

Jonas Salk and the polio vaccination

Today, 12 April 2015 marks the sixtieth anniversary of the announcement that Jonas Salk’s vaccine could prevent poliomyelitis. We asked Charlotte Jacobs, author of Jonas Salk: A Life, a few questions about this event.

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Journal of Public Health

What evidence should be used to make decisions about health interventions?

When making decisions about health interventions in whole populations, many people believe that the best evidence comes from analysis of the results of randomized control trials (RCTs). This belief is reinforced by the notion of a hierarchy of evidence in which the RCT is close to the pinnacle of evidence. It has that position because the RCT is a powerful tool for eliminating bias.

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Oxford Medicine Online

An interactive timeline of the history of polio

Today is the 60th anniversary of the polio vaccine being declared safe to use. The poliovirus was a major health concern for much of the twentieth century, but in the last sixty years huge gains have been made that have almost resulted in its complete eradication. The condition polio is caused by a human enterovirus called the poliovirus.

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Research4Life

Nasra Gathoni: an unsung hero

Recently, Research4Life and its partners, including Oxford University Press, have embarked on a campaign, “Unsung Heroes: Stories from the Library,” to raise awareness about the heroic and life-saving work being done by librarians in the developing world. In this new video, we follow a day in the life of Nasra Gathoni, Head Librarian at the Aga Khan University hospital in Kenya.

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How does handwashing help prevent undernutrition?

Three-year old Asha died last night, her tiny body wracked with diarrhea. Two-month old Abu is vomiting. His mother is dead and his grandmother is finding it difficult to prepare safe artificial food for him. Asha and Abu are just two reasons why Food Safety is the theme of World Health Day 2015. Asha and Abu became ill because her porridge, and his milk, were contaminated with lethal bacteria.

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Residency training and social justice

It is axiomatic in medical education that an individual is not a mature physician until having learned to assume full responsibility for the care of patients. Thus, the defining educational principle of residency training is that house officers should assume the responsibility for the management of patients.

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The importance of antimicrobial stewardship

Antimicrobial stewardship refers to the judicious use of antibiotics. Since 2007, the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) has recommended that all hospitals implement formal antimicrobial stewardship programs (ASPs), which should consist of an infectious diseases physician and a pharmacist with training in infectious diseases.

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Fatherhood and mental health

When people think about depressed parents, it’s almost instinctive to think about post-partum moms. Certainly, post-partum depression is a serious issue, but my co-author Garrett Pace and I wanted to go one step further. We asked if moms and dads are at similar risk for depression based on the kinds of parental roles they take on (like a step-parent or residential biological parent).

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9780199937776

Beethoven’s diagnosis

Since Beethoven’s death on this day 188 years ago, debate has raged as to the cause of his deafness, generating scores of diagnoses ranging from measles to Paget’s disease. If deafness had been his only problem, diagnosing the disorder might have been easier, although his ear problem was of a strange character no longer seen. It began ever so surreptitiously and took over two decades to complete its destruction of Beethoven’s hearing.

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Pohlmann-Eden

Purple Day: a day for thinking about people with epilepsy

Purple Day started with the curiosity and of a girl in eastern Canada, in the province of Nova Scotia, who had epilepsy. It soon became a world-wide success. Purple Day is now an international initiative and effort dedicated to increasing awareness about epilepsy around the globe. Why is it so important to create awareness around people with epilepsy?

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Oxford Medicine Online

The history of epilepsy: an interactive timeline

Investigations into the nature of epilepsy, and its effects on those diagnosed with the disorder, can be traced back for almost 2,000 years. From associations with lunar cycles, to legislation preventing those with epilepsy to marry, the cultural and scientific record on epilepsy treatment is one of stigma and misunderstanding.

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Miller

Where do drugs come from? [quiz]

The discovery and development of drugs was not always a straight path. Many times, the drugs that are well-known today — both hallucinogenic and medicinal — were discovered by mistake or originally developed for a much different purpose. How well do you know the history of some of the most common drugs? Take this quiz to find out if you can match the drug to its origin.

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Pathogens and Disease journal cover

Chlamydia: a global health question?

A leading researcher in the field of immunogenetics, Servaas Morré has investigated women’s genetic susceptibilities to Chlamydia trachomatis, recently co-authoring “NOD1 in contrast to NOD2 functional polymorphism influence Chlamydia trachomatis infection and the risk of tubal factor infertility.” We sat down with Morré to discuss his findings about the most common sexually transmitted bacterial infection and the impact his research will have on treatment in the years to come.

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