• Amniocentesis

    Amniocentesis

    Every mom-to-be hopes to give birth to a healthy baby. However, some women, due to age or genetic makeup, are at greater risk of having a baby with a birth defect. Amniocentesis — or amnio for short — is a prenatal diagnostic test that uses a sample of the amniotic fluid that surrounds your baby

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  • Anemia and Pregnancy

    Anemia and Pregnancy

    It takes strong building materials to make a healthy baby, and few things are stronger than iron. Iron forms the core of red blood cells, the vehicles that carry oxygen to every part of your body, including to your growing baby. If you don’t have enough iron — a common problem in pregnancy — these

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  • Angina Pectoris (Chest Pain)

    Angina Pectoris (Chest Pain)

    What is angina pectoris? Angina is temporary pain or discomfort in the chest that occurs when not enough oxygen-carrying blood reaches your heart muscle. (The term “angina” means “pain,” while “pectoris” refers to the chest.) Sometimes angina feels like heartburn, the similar sensations you may get after eating a heavy meal. But if you feel

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  • Animal Bites

    Animal Bites

    What should I do if my child is bitten by an animal? Treatment depends on how bad the wound is. If it’s clearly minor — nothing more than a superficial scratch — carefully wash the area with soap and water. Apply an antibiotic ointment twice a day. Cover the wound with an adhesive bandage if

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  • Anorexia Nervosa

    Anorexia Nervosa

    What is anorexia nervosa? Anorexia nervosa, or simply anorexia, is a psychiatric and physical illness in which the sufferer basically starves herself. Clinically, a person is anorexic if she has 85 percent or less of the normal body weight for someone of her age and height, yet continues to fast or diet. An estimated 1

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  • Anthrax

    Anthrax

    Anthrax is an animal disease that has been around for thousands of years. It’s caused by a spore-forming bacteria, Bacillus anthracis, which live in the soil and on infected animals, such as cattle, sheep, goats, camels, antelope, and other hoofed animals.

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  • Aortic Dissection

    Aortic Dissection

    By all accounts, Lew Pringle was a ham when he taught his mathematics classes at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. Striding around the room, waving his arms, and indulging in occasional theatrics, he kept his students entertained. But in the middle of one colorful lecture, he collapsed suddenly, in mid-sentence. “A pain deep in the

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  • Appendicitis

    Appendicitis

    As far as anyone can tell, the appendix serves no particular purpose in the body. While your other organs are busy keeping you alive, this small, pinkish, finger-length abdominal sac seems content to just take up space. But every once in awhile, the appendix can be a matter of life and death. If the organ

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  • Arthritis

    Arthritis

    Questions Patients May Want to Ask Their Doctors about Arthritis 1. What is the difference between arthritis and rheumatic disease? 2. Are there several types of arthritis? 3. Does it affect all joints in the body? 4. Does it only affect older people? 5. What can I take for pain relief? 6. Will I have

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  • Artificial Sweeteners and Pregnancy

    Artificial Sweeteners and Pregnancy

    Now that you’re pregnant, a healthy diet is doubly important. Whether you’re sitting down for a meal or grabbing a snack from a vending machine, you have to think about how your choices will affect your baby. If you develop gestational diabetes, you’ll have still more choices to make. Your doctor may advise you, for

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