Antidepressants do little for mild depression, study finds

For patients battling severe depression, antidepressant medications are still the best option for treatment, but these drugs may offer little benefit to patients suffering from milder forms of depression, according to a new analysis published this week in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The review, which analyzed data …

Cut back TV time, burn more calories

It may seem obvious that spending less time lounging on the couch may help burn more calories, but a team of researchers from the University of Vermont recently confirmed that cutting back daily TV time increases the amount of calories you burn. The study, published last month in the journal Archives of Internal Medicine, included 36 …

Antidepressants may alter personality

Clarification added January 6, 2010.

A wealth of research has shown that selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI) are effective at reducing the symptoms of depression—though new research suggests that study populations limited to those with severe depression may skew these findings, and that antidepressants only show truly …

Happy New Year! Don’t forget contraception

It’s New Year’s Eve, and for many people that means some confetti, bubbly and even a midnight kiss. But if you hope that for that kiss to turn into something more, safe sex advocates emphasize the importance of curbing your cocktail intake, and remembering contraception. Research sponsored by the sexual health non-profit group Marie …

Are kids too clean for their own good?

Raising children in an über-hygienic atmosphere may inhibit immune system development key to fighting infection and disease later in life, according to a new study from researchers at Northwestern University. Researchers followed a group of more than 3,000 Filipino children from their mother’s third trimester of pregnancy through 22 …

Looking younger may mean living longer

Informally, it’s a measure medical professionals have been using for centuries—if an adult patient looks “old for his age,” that’s generally considered a sign of poor health. A new study published in the British Medical Journal put that folk wisdom to the test, in a study of more than 1,800 twins ages 70 and older. As part of the …

After brain surgery, bedside exam as critical as CT scan

For brain surgery patients, a doctor’s bedside exam is still superior to a routine CT scan for identifying potential post-surgical complications, according to a study published in the Journal of Neurosurgery. Researchers from the Department of Neurological Surgery at Loyola University in Chicago examined the records of 251 patients who …

Can people really be “visual” or “verbal” learners?

For several decades it has been widely accepted in the field of education that certain people learn better using specific teaching techniques—that some of us gain knowledge more efficiently through verbal training, while others are more visual learners, for example. Yet, according to a review of previous research into this subject …

In hospitals, can disinfectant create super bugs?

In hospital settings, disinfectants are regularly used to prevent the spread of bacteria and prevent infection, but a new study published in the January issue of the journal Microbiology, suggests that too much exposure to a disinfectant may actually cause harm by creating bacteria that can not only resist the cleaning product, but some …

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