Recent Posts

Cosmetic Medicine
Chemical Peels - What Are They and How do They Work?
Aug 29, 2014 By Foad Nahai, MD

Chemical PeelThere are three components related to the aging of the face – loss of volume, descent of the tissues and changes in the skin. As we age the skin loses elasticity resulting in the loss of fullness and that youthful glow. In addition, over time the activities of facial muscles such as smiling, frowning, and puckering of the lips lead to those lines we refer to as smile/frown lines and crow’s feet. Eventually these lines become deeper and are etched in the skin. The process is only accelerated by sun exposure and smoking.

However, there are nonsurgical options to help slow down and reverse the aging process. Retinols, such as Retin A and Renova (derivatives of vitamin A) have a proven role in slowing the process, but there are also skin resurfacing treatments available, such as chemical peels and lasers that are also effective in reversing sun damage and, to a certain extent, the changes associated with aging skin. Lasers and peels basically function in similar fashion. Both remove the top layer of skin and stimulate collagen deposition or tightening in the deeper layers. The laser relies on heat energy, while chemical peels rely on acid to achieve similar effects. The [...]

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Orthopedics, Spine & Sports Medicine
Takeaways from Dr. Oskouei's Stem Cell Treatment Chat
Aug 28, 2014 By Emory Orthopaedics & Spine Center

Stem Cell TreatmentThank you for attending the live chat on Stem Cell Treatment for Osteoarthritis on Tuesday, Aug. 12. We had a great discussion, so thank you to all who participated and asked questions. We were thrilled with the number of people who were able to register and participate in the chat. Check out the chat transcript for a full list of questions and answers! The response was so great that we had a several questions we were not able to answer during the chat, so we will answer them below for your reference. The questions have been broken into sections based on topic:

Surgical vs. Non-Surgical Stem Cell Treatment

  • How exactly do both stem cell treatments work?
Shervin Oskouei, MDDr. Oskouei: When implanted surgically, they recruit surrounding cartilage cellsand begin differentiation into mature cartilage.
  • Can you explain the differences in "stem cell implantation surgery" and "stem cell injections?
Shervin Oskouei, MDDr. Oskouei: Injections alleviate pain and symptoms; whereas,  surgical implantation surgery is a way to actually grow cartilage in areas where the cartilage is lacking.
  • What determines whether you get the surgical or nonsurgical procedure?
Shervin Oskouei, MDDr. Oskouei: It depends on [...]

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Highlights
Cochlear Implants Could be a Game Changer for Those Affected by Hearing Loss
Aug 27, 2014 By Esther Vivas, MD

Cochlear ImplantAccording to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, hearing loss affects millions of children and adults worldwide. Hearing loss can stem from conductive problems or problems with the external ear canal, ear drum, middle ear space or middle ear bones. Conductive hearing loss often can be treated with surgery to address the structure that is affected; however, this is not an option for nerve hearing loss. Nerve or sensorineural hearing loss is caused by intrauterine infections, congenital malformations of the inner ear, trauma, medication induced, sudden deafness or a progressive hearing loss from genetic predisposition. While many patients benefit from standard hearing aid technology, there are some who do not. Fortunately, a result of decades-long research, in 1985 the FDA approved cochlear implant use in humans to address sensorineural hearing loss. Cochlear implants have now helped more than 300,000 people worldwide. What are cochlear implants? Cochlear implants are implantable hearing devices that allow people who are deaf to hear. How do they work? Cochlear implantation provides electrical stimulation directly to the cochlea, the auditory portion of [...]

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Cancer
Doctor as Patient
Aug 27, 2014 By Winship Cancer Institute

Dr. Sagar LonialWinship multiple myeloma expert Dr. Sagar Lonial has seen hundreds of patients through the ups and downs of treatment and recovery, and has pioneered many new drug therapies that have changed the course of survival for multiple myeloma patients. He found his sense of purpose early in his career, seeing discoveries in the lab benefit the patients he was caring for and knowing that his research was intimately tied to their struggles. But it wasn’t until he became a patient himself that he gained full insight into how purpose drives the trajectory of a patient’s journey. Late in 2013, Dr. Lonial sustained a fall that resulted in severely broken bones requiring surgery, hospitalization and months of physical therapy. Lonial wrote about this insight in a recently published essay. Here is an excerpt from his story: Recently, I experienced a medical issue that allowed me to experience the importance of purpose from the other side of the stethoscope. While it was in no way analogous to what my patients go through during the rigors of aggressive therapy or a transplant (I lay in a hospital bed recovering from surgery to repair broken bones), I felt a strong need to push [...]

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Heart & Vascular
What Is Bradycardia and Why Does It Occur?
Aug 26, 2014 By Anshul M. Patel, MD

bradycardiaBradycardia is the medical term for a heart rate that is too slow — specifically, a heart rate less than 60 beats per minute in adults. However, under some circumstances, a heart rate less than 60 beats per minute is perfectly healthy and not a cause for intervention. For instance, a resting heart rate below 60 beats per minute in a person who is physically fit may be normal, and it can be normal for the heart rate to dip below 60 beats per minute in some older adults and in anyone during sleep. The heart consists of two upper chambers (atria) and two lower chambers (ventricles). In a normal heartbeat, an electrical impulse originates from an area in the right atrium called the sinus node. This impulse travels first to the atria, causing them to contract and pump blood into the ventricles. The electrical impulse then continues along its circuit to the ventricles, signaling them to contract and pump blood out to the lungs and the body. In bradycardia, there is a problem with this electrical impulse. For instance, it may trigger the atria to contract, but not reach the ventricles to signal their contraction (heart block), or the signal may travel too slowly along its [...]

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Orthopedics, Spine & Sports Medicine
Achilles Tendon Ruptures and Repair
Aug 25, 2014 By Dr. Labib

achilles tendonThe Achilles tendon connects the muscles in the back of your calf to your heel bone. There are two basic variations of Achilles injuries: Achilles tendonitis, and a complete tear. It’s important to know whether the Achilles is torn or not, because the treatment is very different: a torn Achilles may require surgery; Achilles tendonitis probably means rehab and rest. While tendonitis is a gradual onset of pain that tends to get worse with more activity, an Achilles tear is a sudden injury, and it feels as if you were hit or kicked in the back of the ankle. A tear usually affects your ability to walk properly. Because an Achilles tendon rupture can impair your ability to walk, it's common to seek immediate treatment. You may also need to consult with doctors specializing in sports medicine or orthopaedic surgery. Tests and Diagnosis During the physical exam, your doctor will inspect your lower leg for tenderness and swelling. In many cases, doctors can feel a gap in your tendon if a complete rupture has occurred. Achilles tendon rupture can be diagnosed reliably with clinical examination, but if there's a question about the extent of your Achilles tendon injury then [...]

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Highlights
Video Blog: Emory Ebola Patients Discharged
Aug 22, 2014 By Emory Healthcare

As of yesterday, we confirm that the two Americans infected with the Ebola virus while providing humanitarian aid in West Africa have been discharged from Emory University Hospital. The two patients, Dr. Kent Brantly and Nancy Writebol, were the first Ebola patients to be treated in the United States. Writebol was discharged from Emory University Hospital on Tuesday, Aug. 19, 2014, and Dr. Brantly was discharged Thursday, Aug. 21, 2014. Emory’s Bruce Ribner, MD, and Dr. Kent Brantly spoke at a press conference yesterday afternoon, Aug. 21, about their experiences over the last few weeks. Watch a portion of the news conference below to learn more! [...]

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Highlights
Two Ebola Patients Discharged from Emory University Hospital
Aug 21, 2014 By Emory Healthcare

In an effort to keep our community informed on the status of the Ebola patients being treated at Emory University Hospital, today we confirm that as of this afternoon, both Ebola patients have been discharged from our Infectious Disease Unit at the hospital. Nancy Writebol was discharged from the Emory University Hospital on Tuesday, Aug. 19, 2014, and Kent Brantly, MD, was discharged today, Thursday, Aug. 21, 2014. “After a rigorous and successful course of treatment and testing, the Emory Healthcare team has determined that both patients have recovered from the Ebola virus and can return to their families and community without concern for spreading this infection to others,” says Bruce Ribner, MD, medical director of the Emory University Hospital Communicable Disease Containment Unit. Criteria for the discharge of both patients were based on standard infectious disease protocols and blood and urine diagnostic tests. Our team has maintained its extensive safety procedures throughout this treatment process and is confident that the discharge of these patients poses no public health threat. “The Emory Healthcare team is extremely pleased with Dr. Brantly’s [...]

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Heart & Vascular
Can the Right Diet Help Prevent Heart Disease?
Aug 20, 2014 By Susmita Parashar, MD, MPH, MS, FACC, FAHA

Healthy DietThe simple answer is yes. A proper diet is one of the best ways to reduce your risk for heart disease. But changing entrenched eating habits can be difficult, and it can help to have a deeper understanding of the roles various nutritional components play in the function of your heart and circulatory system. Fats Fats serve a number of essential roles within your body, such as supporting cell growth, providing energy, helping with nutrient absorption and assisting in the production of certain hormones. But not all fats are the same, and it’s important to choose the right kinds to include in your diet. In general, saturated fats and trans fats increase the bad type of cholesterol (LDL) in your blood. These fats tend to be solid at room temperature, such as butter. Unsaturated fats (monounsaturated and polyunsaturated), on the other hand, can help lower the amount of LDL cholesterol in your blood. These types of fat tend to be liquid at room temperature, such as vegetable oil. LDL cholesterol can contribute to plaque build-up on the inside walls of your arteries (atherosclerosis), thereby reducing or blocking blood flow. In addition, all fats are high in calories and [...]

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Cancer
Bone Marrow Transplant Patient Story: Georgia Teacher Finds Perfect Match Across the Globe
Aug 19, 2014 By Winship Cancer Institute

Bone Marrow Transplant Patient StoryErin Blonshine, a 29 year old teacher from Dacula, Georgia, was diagnosed at 21 with AML, a form of Leukemia. Across the globe, Johannes Saur from Ulm, in southern Germany had joined his country’s bone marrow registry at the age of 18, and at 20, when Erin was diagnosed, Johannes got a call that he was a match for an American. At that time, Erin’s cancer went into remission before the transplant was needed, but a year later, it resurfaced. “Her leukemia relapsed, and we knew that the only potential cure was a transplant,” says Amelia Langston, MD, Medical Director of Winship’s Bone Marrow & Stem Cell Transplant Center. In August of 2009, Johanne’s bone marrow was flown to the U.S. for Erin’s transplant, and today, she has made a complete recovery. “5 years, for most leukemia survivors, means cure. It means we’re done worrying about the leukemia,” says Langston. If Erin ever wondered if her perfect match was out there, now she knows. To learn more about Winship’s Bone Marrow Transplant Center and Erin’s journey to recovery after her transplant, check out the video story from Fox 5 News below: [...]

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