Breakthroughs | KERA News

Breakthroughs

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Breakthroughs is a KERA News series devoted to the latest innovations in health, science and technology — with a North Texas accent.

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On average, every four minutes someone dies of a stroke.

Strokes are also the leading cause of long-term disability in the U.S. But technological and medical advances can help diagnose a stroke early. And early diagnosis and treatment for strokes can mean the difference between life and death.

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Even if you don’t need to stay up late Monday night to finish taxes, you might want to. Starting after midnight there will be what’s called a “blood moon.” It’s a full lunar eclipse, and it’s the first of a rare series of eclipses over the next two years.

DarcyDoll/CC

Testosterone replacement therapy does not affect Caucasian men and Mexican-American men the same. In fact, a new study published in the  Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, shows Caucasian men may be at risk of brain damage from the treatment.

UT Dallas

Ordinary sewing thread can have superhuman power. That’s according to researchers at UT Dallas who discovered fishing line and sewing thread can be cheaply converted to powerful artificial muscles — no Rumpelstiltskin required.

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In Texas, the association between marijuana and crime goes back more than a century. One hundred years ago, the state made marijuana use illegal, and it remains that way both for recreational and medical purposes today.

Lauren Silverman / KERA News

A shortage of medical specialists, combined with a glut of newly insured patients has put some rural Texas hospitals in a bind.

Brittany Lynk / North Texas International Visitors Center

A group of female entrepreneurs from two dozen countries across the world visited Dallas this week. As part of the Department of State’s International Visitor Leadership program, the women got a chance to meet with North Texas entrepreneurs.

UT Dallas

The concussion crisis has sent shock waves through the football world from the NFL all the way down to pee-wee leagues. A researcher at UT Dallas has developed a device to measure the force of hits and determine whether there’s been a brain injury.

Louisiana State University

Parkland introduced its new CEO on Monday – the first new CEO in thirty years. Dr. Fred Cerise previously headed Louisiana State University’s charity hospital system. This week, Parkland is inviting the public to meet the new CEO at a series of events hosted by Dallas County commissioners.

According to WFAA, the husband of Marlise Muñoz will not be billed for his wife’s two month stay at JPS Hospital in Fort Worth. Marlise Muñoz, the North Texas woman who was brain dead and pregnant, stayed at JPS Hospital for 62 days, against the wishes of her family. 

Lauren Silverman / KERA News

In television dramas, CPR is often successful. The nurse or doctor is able to resuscitate lifeless body within minutes, simply by pushing on their chest. Unfortunately, in the real world, less than 20 percent of people who receive CPR in a hospital actually survive.

Lauren Silverman / KERA News

Millionaire couple Harville Hendrix and Helen Hunt are on a mission to save marriages in Dallas. Their goal is to bring the tools – in both Spanish and English – to fix broken relationships.

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If you’re a Medicare patient, finding a doctor in Texas can be a challenge.  And there’s a chance Congress is  about to make the task even harder.

In Texas, only 58 percent of doctors take new Medicare patients. That’s partly because reimbursement rates are so low.

Workplace wellness is already a six-billion-dollar-a-year industry, and it’s growing. Employers are searching for programs that are both good for the beltline and the bottom line. The result? They’re gamifying corporate wellness programs.

Lauren Silverman / KERA News

The crowdfunding trend – where people pool their money to back everything from arts projects to new gadgets – has hit home. Literally. Investors are now pooling their money online to buy real estate. And the first crowdfunded real estate transaction just took place in Dallas.

New Crop Of Tech Wildcatters In Dallas

Feb 28, 2014
Lauren Silverman / KERA News

A select group of fourteen startups will work, sleep, eat, and breath together in Dallas for the next three months. Tech Wildcatters, a seed accelerator that started in 2010, has announced its newest, and largest, class of startups from across the world. Of the fourteen companies, five are from Texas.

The Lone Star State is home to more than 50 Fortune 500 corporate headquarters. Part of what Tech Wildcatters offers startups is direct access to these well-established companies.

Let the roast begin: Five North Texas coffee shops have been nominated for the 2014 KRUPS Best Brew Awards: Crooked Tree Coffeehouse, Cultivar Coffee & Tea Co., White Rock Coffee, Avoca Coffee Roasters and Oddfellows.

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Throughout last year, we reported on the spike in cases of whooping cough across North Texas and the rest of the state. (Last September, the state issued a whooping cough alert.)

The numbers are in for last year – and they don’t look good.

Statewide, 3,908 cases were counted -- the highest since the 1950s. About 11 percent of patients were hospitalized. Five deaths were reported.

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Patient-centered care. If you aren’t already familiar with this catchphrase, you will be soon.

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Millions of Americans suffer from a chronic ringing in the ears known as tinnitus. And for more than 10 million of them, the experience of hearing that sound is severe enough to seek medical attention.

Lauren Silverman / KERA News

There may be a future for an ancient profession.

Scribes, who in times past worked on everything from translating religious texts to historical book keeping, are making a comeback in the doctor’s office. A growing number of physicians in Texas, and across the country, are hiring scribes to gather patient information and lighten their workload.

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How many days will you have to wait to see a doctor? Depends on where you live. A new study of fifteen metropolitan areas measured average wait time, and the winner? It’s Dallas.

Lauren Silverman / KERA News

People living in one South Dallas neighborhood used to be three times as likely to die from diabetes-related complications than those in Dallas County overall. That grim statistic is changing, thanks to a prevention-focused health center at the Juanita J. Craft Institute.

Jay Mallin

A $7.75 million gift from Darwin Deason will launch the Darwin Deason Institute for Cyber Security and support the Deason Innovation Gym in Southern Methodist University’s Lyle School of Engineering.

My BuddyTag

Keeping track of your kids at a theme park or fair can be a challenge. That’s why Plano parent and engineer Willy Wu created a device called BuddyTag. There’s no GPS involved -- just a phone and a wristband.

If you’re looking to kick your health tech startup into high gear, Dallas-Fort Worth is a sweet spot to set up shop. Among DFW’s offerings: a roaring tech sector, startup meetups galore and top medical schools, to  name a few.

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A state district judge has ruled that Marlise Muñoz, the brain-dead North Texas woman who’s 22 weeks pregnant, must be removed from life support by 5 p.m. Monday.

The decision Friday afternoon comes after John Peter Smith Hospital declared publicly for the first time that Muñoz has indeed been brain dead since late November. The hospital also says the fetus inside Muñoz is "not viable."

For weeks, hospital officials had said she isn’t dead and that her condition is serious.

DFW NORML

Texas has some of the country’s strictest laws against marijuana — and they date back nearly 100 years. But new polls show growing support across the state to legalize marijuana use. This weekend, drug reform advocates are gathering in Dallas for the first major drug policy conference of 2014, hosted by Mothers Against Teen Violence.

Doualy Xaykaothao / KERA

The Fort Worth Museum of Science and History has a new learning space, where kids get some unusual playmates: scientists and researchers from the University of Texas at Arlington.

Nearly A Quarter Of Health Marketplace Enrollees Are Young Adults

Jan 13, 2014

Nearly a quarter of the 2.2 million people who’ve enrolled in health coverage in the health law’s insurance marketplaces are young adults — the population that’s hardest to reach and yet most vital for the long-term financial stability of the new exchanges, the Obama administration announced Monday.

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