Medical Week in Review 3-15-13

Are you ready for the weekend?  Thanks to St. Patrick's Day, it should be a good one! Unfortunately, I always forget to request minor holidays off work and St. Patty's Day slipped my memory when submitting my schedule requests for the month.  So, my green beer consumption will remain at an all time low.  Irish or not, I hope you enjoy a weekend filled with festive activities.  Here are a few entertaining medical stories from this week to help you make it through your Friday.

How many people 'Like' your clinic or hospital on Facebook?  A recent study in the American Journal of Medical Quality suggests that Facebook 'Likes' are an indicator of patient satisfaction and hospital quality.  93 Facebook 'Likes' even corresponds with a one percent decrease in 30-day mortality rate. 

The newly appointed Pope Francis is revolutionary for many reasons.  He is the first Pope from South America, the first to take the name 'Francis'...and he is the first Pope with one lung.  Pope Francis' lung was removed as a teen when he suffered from a severe lung infection of unknown cause.

I hope you like your job.  A new study shows that the top 20 percent of burnt-out employees have an alarming 79 percent increased risk of coronary artery disease.  Burn-out has also been associated with obesity, insomnia and anxiety.  It turns out your stressful job could literally be killing you

Last week I mentioned an iPhone app designed for urinalysis declaring I prefer to keep my cell away from bodily fluids.  Well, I prefer to keep my gadgets away from creepy crawlies as well.  A new iPhone microscope helps detect parasitic worm eggs.  Using just an $8 lens and sticky tape, this app identifies disease-causing worms.  The new technology is designed for use in remote areas and is currently used in Tanzania to diagnose parasitic disease in children.

Kim Kardashian undergoes a procedure known as the 'Vampire Facial'.  During this cosmetic procedure, the participant's blood is drawn from a vein, spun down in a centrifuge to extract platelet-rich portion of the serum which is then injected into the skin of the face using a motorized injection device.  Results are said to last 15 to 18 months.  Kim's 'after' picture doesn't give me much confidence in the procedure's benefits. 

New data indicates Medicaid is hazardous to your health.  Having Medicaid coverage may make you more likely to die than having no insurance at all.  Medicaid patients consume more healthcare resources than individuals with other types of insurance, undergo more testing and stay in the hospital longer for the same level of illness than individuals with other types of insurance or no insurance at all.  Despite this liberal use of health care resources, Medicaid patients experience poorer outcomes. 

Do you order medications online?  Despite the convenience of mail-order drugs, it turns out extreme weather conditions can affect the potency of prescription medications.  Conditions such as direct sunlight and sweltering temperatures negatively impact the effect of many medications calling the mail-order system into question

Check out the American Nurse Project.  This compelling project highlights photographs and interviews with nurses across the country who make a difference.  The project has become so popular it is being developed into a feature-length documentary.

Got the Harlem Shakes?  You have to see this version of the popular dance- The Hospital Shake.

Have a wonderful weekend!