Levine Named Co-Director of Mayo Clinic/ASU Obesity Solutions Initiative

Posted on January 16th, 2013 by loganlafferty

James A. Levine, professor of medicine at Mayo Clinic and a world-renowned leader in obesity research and child advocacy, has been named co-director of the Mayo Clinic/Arizona State University Obesity Solutions Initiative. Levine has been appointed a tenured professor in ASU’s School of the Science of Health Care Delivery in the College of Health Solutions, as well as in the School of Life Sciences in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, and the School of Biological and Health Engineering in the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering. He also will continue as a professor at Mayo Clinic.

Bioscience Technology

Study Asks: Are e-Visits as Good as Office Appointments?

Posted on January 16th, 2013 by loganlafferty

"E-visits" to the doctor? According to a U.S. study, they may be just as effective as in-person office visits for uncomplicated ailments such as sinus infections and urinary tract infections - and much cheaper…"All over the country, more and more of these e-visits are taking place," said James Rohrer, a family medicine doctor at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, who has studied online care…"If you're not feeling well, getting cleaned up and going into a clinic may not be too attractive," said Rohrer, who was not part of the study. And with e-visits, "there are no parking problems."


Why Mayo, UnitedHealth Research Lab Won’t Be Based in Minnesota

Posted on January 16th, 2013 by loganlafferty

Mayo Clinic and UnitedHealth Group Inc.are two of Minnesota’s biggest health care brands. So why aren’t the two juggernauts setting up their new joint research venture, Optum Labs, in their home state?... Officials also thought setting up shop elsewhere would send the message that the research organization is open to everyone and not just groups based in Minnesota. "We want to attract folks from all across the health care landscape, and doing this in a location that is neutral instead of where our company headquarters [are] sends a signal that it’s something for everybody to use," he said in an interview. "It’s not something set up to be proprietary."

Mpls St. Paul Business Journal by Katarine Grayson

Flu Shot Flaws Leave Experts Queasy

Posted on January 15th, 2013 by loganlafferty

The flu shot, it might be said, is the black sheep of the vaccine family. In good years, people ignore it because they think the flu is no big deal. In bad years -- like this one -- they complain that it doesn't work well enough. But the biggest problem, says Dr. Gregory Poland, a leading vaccine researcher, is that scientists are still scrambling to understand the elusive virus and come up with a better alternative…"Like every single man-made product, influenza vaccine is imperfect,'' said Poland, head of the Vaccine Research Group at the Mayo Clinic. "But I liken it to seat belts. Who would want to be in a crash without a seat belt?"

Related Coverage: KEYC, KSTP, WOWK, KAAL, Red Wing Republican Eagle, KIWA

Star Tribune by Maura Lerner

As Flu Rages, Caregiving Suffers

Posted on January 15th, 2013 by loganlafferty

Nationally, about 60 percent of health care workers get flu vaccines, which are voluntary in most hospitals, nursing homes and assisted-living facilities, according to Dr. Gregory Poland, director of the Mayo Clinic Vaccine Research Group. And when workers are struck by the flu, infections among residents can follow. “The disruptions, the costs, the complications from this virus, no one should confuse it with a minor illness,” said Dr. Poland, who has advocated for mandatory immunizations for health care workers.

New York Times by Judith Graham

Find the Perfect Sleep Position

Posted on January 15th, 2013 by loganlafferty

Tossing and turning all night to find that perfect sleeping position? Experts say there is no one right way to sleep…Roughly 10% of sleep apnea patients can be cured by changing their sleep position, said Eric Olson, co-director of the Mayo Clinic's Center for Sleep Medicine in Rochester, Minn. While there are many sleep products designed to keep people off their backs, Dr. Olson and other experts recommend sewing a tennis ball onto the back of your night shirt to avoid rolling on to your back. And for people who want to stay on their back, he suggests elevating the head by at least 30 degrees or using a wedge pillow.

Wall Street Journal  by Sumathi Reddy

Researchers Mine Data From Clinic, Big Insurer

Posted on January 15th, 2013 by loganlafferty

UnitedHealth Group Inc. and Mayo Clinic are set to unveil a new research initiative that will draw on millions of health-insurance claims and in-depth clinical patient records, part of a broader effort in the health industry to glean insights about care from a growing flood of data…The initiative will focus on research into "best outcomes for patients at lower costs," said John H. Noseworthy, chief executive of Mayo Clinic, a nonprofit. Some initial projects include analyzing how to improve the diagnosis of hepatitis C and looking at the relative cost-effectiveness of certain medical devices, the partners said.

Additional Coverage: Mpls St. Paul Business JournalBloomberg, MedCity News

Wall Street Journal by Anna Wilde Mathews

Gazette Opinion: A Good Match: Mayo Clinic, Billings Clinic

Posted on January 14th, 2013 by loganlafferty

For decades, the Billings Clinic has worked to be the “Mayo clinic of Montana.” Now a formal affiliation will make Billings Clinic a member of the Mayo Clinic Care Network. Network membership doesn’t involve any change in ownership or governance of Billings Clinic, which is a private, nonprofit organization based in Billings. Many Billings Clinic physicians, such as heart surgeon Scott Millikan, trained at Mayo. Billings Clinic physicians long have consulted Mayo specialists when caring for their Montana and Wyoming patients.

Additional Coverage: Sheridan Media, KTVQ

Billings Gazette

Bacteria, For Better or Worse

Posted on January 14th, 2013 by loganlafferty

Researchers are exploring whether a handful of those critters -- a few billion or so -- are making some of us fat. Even as preliminary clues emerge, however, a Mayo Clinic specialist has some reassuring news about those bugs: "Nearly all of them are friendlies," said Dr. Joseph Murray, a physician and researcher on the digestive system…Leaning on early research, some physicians and nutrition advisers say you can bring joy to the good bugs and discourage the bad ones by getting adequate sleep, controlling stress and eating such foods as unprocessed sugars and grains…."Some of that may be true -- or not true, or partly true -- but we just don't know yet," said Murray, whose musical Irish lilt and playful descriptions make you wonder if your stomach perhaps is a pleasant garden filled with happy little leprechauns who seize and boot out the nasty ogres of disease.

Star Tribune by Warren Wolfe

New Saliva Gland Test May Better Diagnose Patients With Parkinson’s

Posted on January 14th, 2013 by loganlafferty

It’s difficult for patients to absolutely know if they have Parkinson’s disease. To date, the only way to diagnose someone with Parkinson’s is to do a clinical exam to access his or her symptoms.  And in order to definitively get an answer, an autopsy is performed on the brain – only after the person has died. But now, a conclusive clinical test may soon be available.  Researchers from the Mayo Clinic in Arizona have found that examining a specific portion of a person’s saliva gland may be able to diagnose someone with Parkinson’s.

Fox News by Loren Grush

A Good Way to Measure Obesity? Fat Chance

Posted on January 14th, 2013 by loganlafferty

A report last week that people who are slightly overweight have less chance of dying than those of normal weight had some researchers calling for further study of how a little extra fat can apparently be good for you. But others saw it as another sign that the standard way of measuring who is too heavy should be scrapped… "I suspect it's primarily an issue with BMI being unable to measure the things it's intended to measure, or what really matters," said Francisco Lopez-Jimenez, a cardiologist and professor of medicine at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.

Wall Street Journal by Carl Bialik

Mayo Clinic in the News Weekly Highlights

Posted on January 11th, 2013 by Karl W Oestreich



January 11, 2013

Mayo Clinic in the News is a weekly highlights summary of major media coverage. If you would like to be added to the weekly distribution list, send a note to Emily Blahnik with this subject line: SUBSCRIBE to Mayo Clinic in the News.

Thank you.

Karl Oestreich, manager enterprise media relations

HuffPost Live
Let My Doctor Sleep
Hosted by Alicia Menendez

A new study shows that doctor fatigue raises the risk of car accidents after long shifts. How does fatigue impair medical care?

Circulation: The Huffington Post attracts over 28 million monthly unique viewers.

Context: This study appeared in the Dec. 5 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association. Colin West., M.D., Ph.D., the lead author, is a General Internal Medicine physician at Mayo Clinic. His research focuses primarily on physician well-being, evidence-based medicine and biostatistics, and medical education. Dr. West participated in this Google Hangout with eight other people. This function within Google Plus allows users to have live, face-to-face, multi-person video chats with chosen participants. Google Hangouts On Air are Hangouts in which the video stream displays publicly on the Google Plus profile page of the user who launched the chat. They can also be displayed on the user's YouTube channel or website.

News Release

Previous Coverage

Public Affairs Contacts: Alyson Fleming, Nick Hanson

NBC News
Is sitting the new smoking? Natalie Morales chats with viewers and experts about the growing health risk

NBC News'  Natalie Morales held a  Google+ Hangout with the    Mayo Clinic's Dr. James Levine, a leading obesity expert. Levine and Morales discussed the topic of sitting too much and how harmful it can be to your health. Dr. Levine and Morales also chatted with Howard Snitzer and Audrey Caseltine.  

Rock Center With Brian Williams
Mayo Clinic’s 10 tips on how to burn calories at work

Dr. James Levine’s obesity research at the Mayo Clinic is turning our conventional thinking about exercise on its head.  Levine says that a daily dose of exercise, while beneficial, can’t undo the damage done from sitting all day at work and at play. 

Context: James Levine, M.D., Ph.D., is a Mayo Clinic endocrinologist who is often sought out by journalists for his expertise. Basing his techniques of non-exercise activity on years of Mayo Clinic research, he offers cost-effective alternatives to office workers, school children and patients for losing weight and staying fit. Author, inventor, physician and research scientist, Dr. Levine has built on Mayo’s top status as a center of endocrinology expertise and has launched a multi-nation mission to fight obesity through practical, common-sense changes in behavior and personal environment.

Public Affairs Contacts: Bob Nellis, Sharon Theimer

PBS Newshour
Study Shows Many Teens at Risk for Suicidal Behavior Despite Mental Health Help

A new study shows most teenagers who think about or attempt suicide have already had mental health treatment. Gwen Ifill talks to Dr. Timothy Lineberry of the Mayo Clinic and Drexel University psychologist Brian Daly about concerns over the effectiveness of current clinical treatment programs to prevent adolescent suicide.

Reach: PBS NewsHour is an hour-long evening newscast with detailed analysis of major national and international issues.

Context: Timothy Lineberry, M.D. is a Mayo Clinic psychiatrist and suicide expert.

Public Affairs Contact: Nick Hanson

New York Times
Flu Widespread, Leading a Range of Winter’s Ills
by Donald G. McNeil Jr. and Katharine Q. Seelye

It is not your imagination — more people you know are sick this winter, even people who have had flu shots…Nationally, deaths and hospitalizations are still below epidemic thresholds. But experts do not expect that to remain true. Pneumonia usually shows up in national statistics only a week or two after emergency rooms report surges in cases, and deaths start rising a week or two after that, said Dr. Gregory A. Poland, a vaccine specialist at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota. The predominant flu strain circulating is an H3N2, which typically kills more people than the H1N1 strains that usually predominate; the relatively lethal 2003-4 “Fujian flu” season was overwhelmingly H3N2.

Circulation: The New York Times has the third highest circulation nationally, behind USA Today (2nd) and The Wall Street Journal (1st) with 1,150,589 weekday copies circulated and 1,645,152 circulated on Sundays.

Aditional Coverage: FoxNY, The Weather Channel, Newser, Becker’s Hospital Review, Health, Austin Daily Herald, NBC Nightly News, WCCO, Fox 9, KARE 11, Mankato Free Press, KEYC, St. Peter Herald, WBBH, Duluth News Tribune, USA Today

Public Affairs Contacts: Bryan Anderson, Traci Klein

Yuma Sun
Mayo Clinic bringing particle technology to Southwest
by Joyce Lobeck

A new era in radiation therapy for cancer patients is coming to the desert Southwest, including Yuma-area residents, through a major construction project at the Phoenix campus of Mayo Clinic…Proton beam therapy is a highly targeted and precise way to administer radiation therapy, explained Dr. Steven Schild, radiation oncologist with Mayo Clinic in Arizona.

Reach: The Yuma Sun’s online edition covers local and state news to people living in Yuma County, the southwest corner of Arizona. The online edition has more than 99,000 unique users per month and more than 1.4 million page views per month. The daily circulation of the print version is more than 19,000. 

Context: When fully established, the Mayo Clinic Proton Beam Therapy Program will offer one of the most technologically advanced treatment options to people with cancer. Proton beam therapy precisely targets cancer cells through the use of charged particles. While not everyone with cancer requires proton beam therapy, it is a preferred treatment for selected patients, such as children and adults with anatomically complex tumors adjacent to critical or sensitive organs and regions such as the brain, eye, spinal cord, lung, heart, liver, bowel and kidneys. Proton beam therapy is sometimes used to treat benign tumors as well. Proton beam therapy facilities are being built at Mayo Clinic’s campuses in Rochester, Minn., and Phoenix, Ariz. Groundbreaking in Rochester was in September 2011 and in Phoenix in December 2011. The first treatment rooms are expected to open by mid-2015 in Rochester and by March 2016 in Phoenix. Both facilities will be fully operational in 2017. Central to the development of this program was a gift of $100 million from longtime Mayo patient and philanthropist Richard O. Jacobson.

Public Affairs Contact: Julie Janovsky-Mason

Billings Gazette
Billings Clinic forms formal relationship with Mayo Clinic
By Cindy Uken

Billings Clinic announced Wednesday that it has entered into a one-year, renewable agreement with the recently created Mayo Clinic Care Network, a nationwide affiliation of health organizations. Billings Clinic, with 272 beds, is the first hospital in Montana to have passed Mayo’s review process and been selected as a member of the year-old network. It is the 12th hospital nationally to be included in the Mayo Clinic Care Network. There is also one Minnesota hospital in a separate Mayo Clinic Cancer Care Network.

Circulation: The Billings Gazette is the largest daily newspaper in Montana with more than 39,000 readers each day and serves eastern Montana, northern Wyoming and North Dakota. The paper focuses most on local, state and regional news and politics, as well as national and world news pertinent to the region. The newspaper's website has more than 328,000 unique visitors each month and has more than 4.9 million page views each month.

Addional Coverage: Mpls St. Paul Business Journal, Missoulian

Context: Mayo Clinic announced this week that Billings Clinic is the newest member of the Mayo Clinic Care Network. Billings Clinic is the first health system in Montana to have passed Mayo's rigorous review process and been selected as a member of the network. Billings Clinic's group practice structure is a team-oriented community of physicians who work together in a collaborative manner to provide primary and specialty regional medical care for the entire population of Montana, the western Dakotas and northern Wyoming, with a regional population of more than half a million.

News Release: Billings Clinic Joins Mayo Clinic Care Network

Public Affairs Contact: Bryan Anderson

Star Tribune
Mayo joint venture focuses effort on rural hospitals
By Jackie Crosby

Dr. Mark Lindsay's bright idea got its start in the late 1990s at a hospital in Eau Claire, Wis. That's when the Mayo Clinic pulmonologist began working on a comprehensive approach to help patients get free of ventilators and recover more quickly after an accident or surgery. The approach, which Lindsay fine-tuned and expanded to 11 rural hospitals in the Midwest, now forms the cornerstone of a new joint-venture business announced Thursday by the Mayo Clinic that will take the model to remote hospitals across the country.

Circulation: The Star Tribune Sunday circulation is 514,457 copies and weekday circulation is 300,330. The Star Tribune is the state’s largest newspaper and ranks 16th nationally in circulation.

Additional Coverage:  Post Bulletin, Minneapolis St. Paul Business Journal, La Crosse Tribune, 4-Traders

Context:  Mayo Clinic and Select Medical announced the formation of a new company designed to improve medical care — specifically post-acute care — in rural America. The joint venture, called Allevant Solutions, LLC, will offer consulting services to rural hospitals and skilled nursing homes. The consulting services include methodologies, algorithms and processes which incorporate clinical services, quality improvement and business expertise developed by Mayo and Select Medical. Through these services, Allevant will enable its clients to increase the availability of post-acute care and also reduce the costs associated with providing the rehabilitative services that many patients need even after they have overcome a life-threatening illness or accident.

News Release: Mayo Clinic and Select Medical to Form Allevant Solutions

Website: Allevant Solutions

Public Affairs Contact: Karl Oestreich

La Crosse Tribune
Mayo in La Crosse starts TV link with Rochester to treat strokes
by Mike Tighe

A new telecommunications method for evaluating stroke patients at the Mayo Clinic Health System in La Crosse gives neurologists at Mayo’s flagship in Rochester, Minn., a bird’s-eye view to help determine treatment. The method, called telestroke, incorporates a Skype-type link between Mayo’s emergency room in La Crosse and Rochester…“This allows the stroke neurologist to help decide which candidates go to Rochester for very specialized treatments,” said Dr. Greg Pupillo, a neurologist at the La Crosse facility, which he said treated 140 stroke patients last year.

Circulation: The La Crosse Tribune covers local and state news that is relevant to the Western Wisconsin area and has a daily circulation of more than 25,000 readers. the newspaper's online edition has more than 230,000 uniquevisitors each month and more than 6.9 million page views per month.

Context: The Neurology Department at Mayo Clinic Health System Franciscan Healthcare in La Crosse provides care for a wide variety of neurological disorders including stroke, seizures & epilepsy.

News Release: Mayo Clinic Health System Franciscan Healthcare adds telestroke program

Public Affairs Contact: Rick Thiesse

To subscribe: Mayo Clinic in the News is a weekly highlights summary of major media coverage. If you would like to be added to the weekly distribution list, send a note to Emily Blahnik with this subject line: SUBSCRIBE to Mayo Clinic in the News.

To unsubscribe: To remove your name from the global distribution list, send an email to Emily Blahnik with the subject: UNSUBSCRIBE from Mayo Clinic in the News.

Brief Class on Easy-To-Miss Precancerous Polyps Ups Detection

Posted on January 9th, 2013 by loganlafferty

Mayo study shows, Most people know a colonoscopy requires some preparation by the patient. Now, a Mayo Clinic physician suggests an additional step to lower the risk of colorectal cancer: Ask for your doctor's success rate detecting easy-to-miss polyps called adenomas…Recently, the Mayo Clinic in Florida developed a two-hour course designed to increase a doctor's ADR rate in order to reduce development of colorectal cancer. They found the short course made a big difference in even experienced endocopsists, the physicians who perform colonoscopies.


Hormel Institute Gets $1.8 million Grant

Posted on January 9th, 2013 by loganlafferty

The Hormel Institute has just received nearly $1.8 million in research grants…The BioScience Triangle growing the collaborative partnership between the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, Mayo Clinic-Rochester and The Hormel Institute-Austin is continuing to expand, with plans for a major expansion to begin this year at The Hormel Institute to add more laboratories and better space for its International Center of Research Technology.


Surprising Teaching Tool in K-12 Science Education — Zebrafish Research

Posted on January 9th, 2013 by loganlafferty

The world's leading zebrafish researchers contribute to the community's active global efforts to promote science education…"The emphasis is on teaching students how to think, rather than on what to think," says Stephen Ekker, PhD, Editor-in-Chief of Zebrafish and Professor of Medicine at Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN. "This issue will have a substantial impact well beyond the zebrafish community."