Stanford Medicine Newsletter Updates For the Local Community

Summer 2014

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Julie Prillinger decided to have her genome sequenced at the new Clinical Genomics Service to give her daughter information about her own health.

Genomics gets personal

An athlete in both high school and college, Julie Prillinger had no idea anything was wrong with her until she went for a physical for a new job. The doctor detected something unusual in the rhythm of her heartbeat and referred her to a cardiologist.

Tests showed that Prillinger had an inherited condition of the heart called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. Prillinger, whose father died at 49 of a suspected heart problem, followed her doctor's recommendation to have a defibrillator implanted in her chest to shock her heart if she were to experience a dangerous rhythm.

After the birth of her first child, however, she thought about a next step -- an analysis of her entire genome. Read Story »

Sound Bites

“This technology can work. It can decrease the risk of having a prolonged low at night, and there seems to be minimal downside.”

Bruce Buckingham, MD, professor of pediatric endocrinology, regarding a computer program that can predict dangerously low blood sugar levels in type 1 diabetics while they sleep

Fox News, May 9

“Why do we physicians choose to pursue such aggressive treatment for our patients when we wouldn't choose it for ourselves? The reasons likely are multifaceted and complex.”

VJ Periyakoil, MD, clinical associate professor of medicine and director of the Stanford Palliative Care Education and Training Program, regarding her study showing that many doctors would forgo aggressive end-of-life treatments for themselves that they would pursue for their patients.

HealthDay, May 29

“We should be learning from the record of routine medical practice.”

Nigam Shah, MD, assistant professor of medicine, on a study that mined electronic health records of young arthritis patients to see if there was a connection between allergies and an inflammatory eye condition.

Wall Street Journal, May 13

“If you're a patient who receives a sample, you may perceive that doctor is giving you better care. But that doctor may have increased your medical costs by giving you that sample.”

Alfred Lane, MD, emeritus professor of dermatology, on a study that found that dermatologists with access to free drug samples write costlier prescriptions.

Reuters, May 18

Guidelines for genome-sequencing tests for kids

Louanne Hudgins, MD, chief of medical genetics and director of perinatal genetics at Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford, explains the unique risks of direct-to-consumer genome-sequencing tests for children. Read Story »

Health's kitchen

Chloe Chien, MD, went to medical school because she wanted to "comfort, heal and save lives." But more than a year ago, the young doctor shocked her family and friends by withdrawing her applications to medical residency programs and turning her attention to creating a healthy-cooking course. Read Story »

Building to withstand a major earthquake

The U.S. Geological Survey predicts a 63 percent probability of a 6.7 earthquake within the next 20 years for the Bay Area. But the New Stanford Hospital is being constructed to withstand the most severe of tremors. When completed in 2017, the building will be one of the most seismically safe hospitals in the country. Read Story »

Put a lid on children's screen time

When kids reach for the tablet, smartphone or television remote for easy entertainment, research suggests this could be a one-way ticket to obesity, aggressive behaviors, increased consumerism and decreased standardized test scores. Read Story »

Med School 101

This spring, about 140 students from 10 local high schools visited campus for Stanford Medicine's eighth annual Med School 101, a day-long event designed to expose students to medicine and related fields. Read Story »

Life Flight marks 30 years of saving lives

In May 1984, a 70-year-old woman critically injured in a car accident in Santa Cruz County became Stanford Life Flight's inaugural mission. With that incident, Life Flight was established as the first helicopter emergency services program in the Bay Area, and Stanford Hospital & Clinics became the first medical center in the region to have its own helicopter and air medical transport team. Read Story »

Fetal surgery lets baby -- and parents -- breathe easy

Elizabeth Rodriguez-Garcia was nearly six months pregnant and in a celebratory mood when she went in for a routine ultrasound in July 2013. It would be the first baby, a boy, for Rodriguez-Garcia and her husband, Salvador Alvarez. But something was wrong. The ultrasound technician found a large, dark spot where the fetus's left lung should have been. Read Story »


Young blood

Something — or some things — in the blood of young mice has the ability to restore mental capabilities in old mice, a new study shows. More »



Find out more about the events taking place at Stanford. More »


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