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She Found Out She Had Cancer. Then, a 'God Moment'

Nurse Iris Zink donated her kidney to longtime patient and friend Ginny Holcomb

(Newser) - Everyone hopes for a caring and compassionate nurse when they're ailing, but one Michigan woman's caretaker went "above and beyond the call of duty," per Becker's Hospital Review . For more than 15 years, nurse practitioner Iris Zink has treated Ginny Holcomb at Lansing Rheumatology, and... More »

Lawsuit: Female Nurse Had Sex With Medicated Patient

Man says he was awaiting heart transplant surgery at the time

(Newser) - A man who was in the ICU on medication and awaiting a heart transplant says a nurse came into his room and had sex with him against his wishes, reports CBS Chicago . A lawsuit filed by the man and his wife says the incident, "including intercourse," took place... More »

Woman's Face Erupts in Flames During Surgery

29-year-old mom of three was having cysts removed from her head

(Newser) - A Florida woman was airlifted to a burn center after her face erupted in flames during surgery. The 29-year-old mom of three was having cysts removed from her head when the accident occurred. Firefighters were called, but the flash fire was out by the time they arrived. It's not... More »

Senate Finally Confirms Surgeon General

Republicans relent after weeks of procedural delays

(Newser) - The Senate unanimously confirmed Regina Benjamin as US surgeon general yesterday after Republicans ended a procedural delay that had dragged on for several weeks. Mitch McConnell and seven other GOP senators said they stalled because of an administration “gag order” that prevented insurers from giving their opinions on the... More »

Medical Pot Use Legal, Confusing in Michigan

Law's loopholes leave advocates, opponents fretting

(Newser) - Medical use of marijuana is about to become fully legal in Michigan, but loopholes and inconsistencies in the law could keep reefer madness underground, the Chicago Tribune reports. Voters approved the decriminalization measure last fall, and next month, patients will be able to request authorization from doctors. Legislatures in Illinois,... More »

Face Transplant Patient Leaves Cleveland Hospital

Subject of experimental surgery released after a 2-month recovery

(Newser) - The subject of the first face transplant performed in America was released from the hospital yesterday, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports. The patient left after 2 months of recovery from the experimental, 23-hour procedure. She enjoys being able to once again drink from a cup and taste a hamburger, the... More »

Patients Could Polish Their Bedside Manner, Docs Say

Lousy rapport impairs treatment, survey finds

(Newser) - Odds are you're annoying your doctor, according to a Canadian study that asked nearly 300 physicians about their daily frustrations. As the Globe and Mail reports, many had difficulty establishing rapports with patients, who routinely resisted or flouted their advice —which can lead to patient safety problems. “When... More »

Patients Paying $1B in Medical Bills They Don't Owe

Health-care providers engage in illegal practice to get funds

(Newser) - Millions of patients throughout the country are footing the bill for medical payments they don’t owe, BusinessWeek reports. In a practice known as balance billing, health-care providers stick weary patients with the cost of their treatment not covered by insurers. The practice is often illegal, but, according to estimates,... More »

Cancer Patients Bare All in Blogs

Researchers and psychologists think connection, and release, are beneficial

(Newser) - Cancer patients, once reticent, are increasingly explicit in sharing the details of their ordeals in blogs—and finding it therapeutic. Researchers at Ohio State looked at 50 blogs and found they helped patients cope, the Boston Globe reports. Not only do they make it easier to  keep friends and family... More »

NC Hospital Faces Heat After Man Ignored 22 Hours Dies

Patient unattended as staff played cards

(Newser) - Federal authorities are threatening to cut funding for a North Carolina hospital where a psychiatric patient died after being ignored for 22 hours, the AP reports. It’s still not clear what killed the 50-year-old, who at one point choked on medication, but surveillance video shows him sitting unattended while... More »

Family Wants $25M Over Hospital Death

Woman left to die on floor 'killed twice' by staff at NY facility

(Newser) - The family of the woman who died on the waiting-room floor in a Brooklyn hospital plans to sue for $25 million, CNN reports. Esmin Green’s relatives are also pushing for criminal charges against the hospital staff, who they say ignored her and falsified records to say she was up... More »

Woman Dies, Ignored, on Waiting Room Floor

Brooklyn hospital staff overlooks ER patient for over an hour

(Newser) - Recently uncovered surveillance footage shows a woman collapsing in a Brooklyn psychiatric hospital, then lying on the floor for more than an hour while hospital staff ignored her. Esmin Green, 49, had been waiting for treatment for almost 24 hours when she collapsed at 5:32am and lay convulsing on... More »

LASIK Patients Urge Better Oversight

Eye surgery can have serious side-effects, they tell FDA

(Newser) - Patients experiencing painful and sometimes debilitating side-effects of LASIK eye surgery urged regulators today to keep a closer watch on the procedure, Reuters reports. A surgeon speaking to an FDA panel—soliticing advice for possible warnings after receiving 140 complaints—did not discount the allegations but said “the great... More »

Americans Double Use of Pain Meds

Led by Oxycodone, sales of painkillers soared 90% in 8 years

(Newser) - Retail sales of five major painkillers rose a whopping 90% from 1997 to 2005, a new AP analysis of DEA statistics shows. The increase is driven by Oxycodone, the chemical used in OxyContin, which has seen sales increase nearly 600%. Causes include an aging population, huge new drug marketing campaigns,... More »

Pavarotti Extends Stay in Hospital

'Tranquil' tenor to remain a few more days

(Newser) - Tenor Luciano Pavarotti has decided to extend his stay in the hospital a few more days, his wife said, saying the star feels “more tranquil” there and denying rumors that he had pneumonia. The opera luminary, who had surgery for pancreatic cancer in 2006, was hospitalized last week when... More »

Maybe Your Ailments Are All in Your Web

'Cyberchondriacs' surf around to round out docs' advice

(Newser) - More and more people are turning to websites to complement doctor visits, Ars Technica reports. About three-quarters of adults seek out medical info online, a fraction that's held for nearly a decade even as the number of wired adults has soared. That translates to 160 million of what Harris Interactive... More »

Transplant Doc Accused of Quickening Patient's Death

Organ-donation controversy erupts

(Newser) - A San Francisco surgeon is facing unprecedented felony charges of accelerating the death of a 25-year-old disabled man to harvest his organs for transplant. The doctor denies the charges that he acted without a legitimate medical purpose, the LA Times reports, but the controversy is bad news for transplant doctors... More »

Chief Justice Is 'Fully Recovered' After Seizure

It's his second mystery collapse

(Newser) - Chief Justice John Roberts was  "fully recovered" yesterday evening following  a seizure at his island summer home off Maine, according to a Supreme Court spokeswoman as Roberts spent the night in a hospital for observation. Roberts had a thorough neurological evaluation that revealed no cause for concern, the Washington ... More »

UK to Patients Who Smoke: Put That Out

National Health Service imposes four-week window before surgery

(Newser) - Smokers in Britain must kick the habit for at least four weeks before undergoing routine surgery or the National Health Service will deny them the operations, the Daily Mail reports. Doctors will use blood tests to enforce the new policy, which could affect up to 500,000 smokers awaiting procedures... More »

States Rewrite Organ-Donation Laws

New revision would make it easier to obtain organs

(Newser) - Doctors will be able to take organs from potential donors in more sticky situations, under revisions to state laws on the boards in more than 24 states. Model legislation that's already passed in four states clarifies how to handle ethically complex decisions, helping to alleviate the chronic shortage of kidneys... More »

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