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Health Consequences Associated With Untreated Hearing Loss

Kathryn Samaniego
As research continues in the area of untreated hearing loss more and more findings show that it is not worth it to wait to do something about hearing deficits.  Current research is showing correlations between untreated hearing loss and dementia, depression, heart disease, and diabetes, as well as increased mortality.

A study published in the Archives of Neurology on February 14, 2011 found that hearing loss was associated with dementia (all causes).  They noted that the greater the hearing loss the more at risk a person was for dementia.  Additionally, they noted that for individuals in their study over the age of sixty, more than one-third of the subjects with risk of dementia had associated hearing loss.  One reason that may support these findings would be the exhausting of cognitive reserves; in other words more brain power goes into straining to listen for comprehension of speech than other cognitive processes, like working memory.

Another study ...

Heart health and hearing loss may be connected

Erin Lazar, AuD
Could hearing loss be an indicator for cardiovascular disease? February is American Heart Month so it is a perfect time to bring up this question. More and more research has been showing that there is a link between people’s cardiovascular health and their hearing. This is yet another important reason for middle-aged and older adults to get their hearing tested.

Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the United States and it accounts for nearly 30% of all deaths worldwide. Fortunately, early intervention and identifying important risk factors for cardiovascular disease has decreased its incidence. Despite the medical advances in recent decades, there is still a need for more sensitive screening techniques to identify heart disease sooner.

This is where hearing testing could come in:

How much water should I be drinking?

Lora Plaskon, MD, MS

Lora Plaskon, MD, MS
Urogynecologist

"How much water should I be drinking?" is one of the most common questions I get and the answer I give is "enough to keep you urine flowing and generally a light yellow color".

The old advice of 8-10 glasses of water a day is with the caveat if you aren't eating food - you have to consider the fluids in your food as part of your daily water intake - so 8-10 glassses a day is too much water for most of us.

Most active women who are ...

Preliminary results from study of myelin repair

James D. Bowen, MD

Results were released recently from a study of a medication that may promote myelin repair. The MS Center at Swedish was one of the research sites for this study. The medication, rHIgM22, is an antibody that encouraged myelin repair in animal models. The way that it helps with myelin repair is not known. This study was a phase I study, which means that it was the first time that this medication was used in humans. Phase I studies are done to determine the safety of a medication, and also to help determine the dose of the medication.

In this study, patients ...

Recommended vaccinations for those with IBD

Karlee J. Ausk, MD

Karlee J. Ausk, MD
Gastroenterologist

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a persistent inflammatory condition of the gastrointestinal system affecting over one million Americans. Treatment of IBD often requires altering a patient’s immune response and can increase the risk for infectious complications. To help prevent this, the American Gastroenterological Association and the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation have published immunization guidelines for IBD patients. Despite these recommendations, less than half of IBD patients are up-to-date on their recommended immunizations. Studies show that the most common reason for missing vaccinations is the lack of awareness that immunizations are safe and recommended.


If you are immune-suppressed, inactivated vaccines are safe and should be given. I would recommend:

World Cancer Day 2015: Not Beyond Us

Damarise Navarro, MPH

Damarise Navarro, MPH
Health Education Specialist, Swedish Cancer Institute

World Cancer Day is an initiative created to give the entire world an opportunity to fight against the cancer epidemic together.

Cancer is the uncontrollable growth and spread of cells.  The cancerous cells originate in one area and have the potential to invade surrounding tissue and can metastasize/spread to other sites through the blood and lymph system. There are different types of cancers such as carcinoma, sarcoma, leukemia, lymphoma, multiple myeloma, and the central nervous system. Avoiding common risk factors such as smoking can help reduce the risk of developing cancer.  Based on the time of diagnosis, cancer may be treated using surgery, chemotherapy or radiation.

World Cancer Day occurs the 4th of every February. The primary goal is to significantly reduce the illness and death caused by cancer.  In order to prevent the loss of millions of lives, this initiative aims to raise awareness and education about cancer as well as motivating government entities and individuals to take a stance against the disease.

Are trampolines safe for kids?

Kathleen Moen, MD

Kathleen Moen, MD
Pediatric Orthopedic Surgeon

Trampolines are fun and children get a good amount of exercise when using them. However, thousands of children every year are injured on trampolines. In 2009, 98,000 people were seen in emergency rooms with injuries sustained while on trampolines. While many of these injuries were bumps and bruises, others were fractured bones that required casting and injuries requiring hospitalization and surgery. Sadly, a small percentage of people sustained life-threatening and permanently life-altering injuries, including closed head injuries and spinal cord injuries. Both the American Academy of Pediatrics and the America Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons have discouraged the recreational use of trampolines. What do we know about how these injuries occur and can we avoid them?

About 75% of injuries happen when more than one child at a time is on the trampoline. The smallest children are most at risk, because:
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