Since the illness first surfaced in the U.S. in the ’80s, chronic-fatigue patients have endured skepticism from doctors, who have not known what to make of a constellation of symptoms that has no known cause, no diagnostic test, and no specific treatment.
To those who are convinced that the science of global warming is sound, as well as to those on the fence, the refusal of climate scientists to attribute any single episode of extreme weather to greenhouse-induced climate change has been either exasperating … or suspicious.
Ancient Egyptians relied on a pregnancy test that was roughly 70 percent accurate: if a woman urinated on grain seeds and they grew—thanks to high levels of estrogen and progesterone in her urine—she was probably pregnant. Today, people still place a high premium on diagnosing themselves from the comfort of their own bathrooms.
While government agencies, businesses, and private institutions are all looking for ways to battle the obesity crisis, no one has yet figured out successful interventions that both improve health and save money, and programs being implemented are often untested.
“Blackout in a can.” That’s what kids call the fruity caffeinated-alcohol drinks that offer a cheap, fast way to get drunk and party all night. As safety concerns grow, so does the pressure to pull these potent products from store shelves. Oklahoma, Washington, Utah, and Michigan recently banned the drinks. Beverage retailers in Indiana are lobbying their state to do the same; Pennsylvania has asked state-run liquor stores to voluntarily stop selling them. Meanwhile, pressure is mounting on the FDA to finish its yearlong investigation into the drinks’ safety.
What happened to the Netroots? That’s what I’ve been wondering ever since the Republicans routed the Democrats last week. Two years ago, a lot of people—myself included—really believed that all those online activists who helped elect Barack Obama were going to stick around and support him as he pushed through a sweeping list of progressive measures.
Almost no topic in modern medicine has been as controversial or confusing as hormone-replacement therapy. The issue got even more confusing last week thanks to a study published in The Journal of the American Medical Association and based on data collected for the ongoing federal Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) that found that women taking estrogen and progesterin had an increased risk of breast cancer. Here, the answers to the eight questions asked most often.
Every year approximately 12.9 million babies are born too early. Despite a heroic, costly, and decades-long effort by doctors and scientists to understand and prevent preterm birth, that number has climbed steadily for the past three decades.
The landscape of personal data mining and exploitation is shifting faster than ever; trying to protect your online privacy alone is like trying to build your own antivirus software—really, really difficult.
If not for Ted Hoff’s curiosity, we’d all be using typewriters to text our BFFs. OK, not quite. But it’s hard to overstate how much Hoff’s invention changed the world, even if he downplays the impulse that led to the first mass-produced microprocessor.
About 18 months ago, I took a trip to Buenos Aires. Naturally, I searched the Web for information on the city, but what I found didn’t feel natural at all. There were lists of links; spammy, dense blocks of text; and a hodgepodge of videos and advertising. It took so long to assemble key facts about the city, I almost missed my flight. Amid this frustrating experience, however, I also had a moment I’ll never forget. I realized that what the Web needs isn’t another search engine. It needs story, a quintessentially human way to experience information.
The shoe market has recently been glutted with a new wave of "toner" sneakers promising a better body simply by walking. At first blush, these new kicks seem like the most magical footwear since Dorothy's ruby slippers. But consumers are right to ask whether the shoes are based on sound science or marketing gimmickry.
Two hours after January’s earthquake struck Haiti, a texting donation campaign, “Text HAITI to 90999,” was up and running. After three days the effort had raised $5 million for the Red Cross, and “Text” and “90999” were in the top-10 trending topics on Twitter. Nine months later, more than $40 million has been donated by people sending as little as $5 to $10 from their cell phones.
Since Christine “I’m Not a Witch” O’Donnell is campaigning for the U.S. Senate and not the directorship of the Kinsey Institute, maybe we should give her a pass when it comes to her views on sex and, specifically, masturbation. But that would be a mistake: the stakes are simply too high, going all the way up the very survival of our species. For while O’Donnell crusaded against masturbation in the mid-1990s, denouncing it as “toying” with the organs of procreation and generally undermining baby making, the facts are to the contrary.
Moving in together before marriage used to be associated with a higher risk for divorce. But now, as more unmarried couples than ever before decide to live under the same roof, do they face the same fate? Sociologists think the calculus may have changed. Part of the difference stems from just who’s deciding to shack up.
If the summer of 2009 was the season of “death panels,” as the debate over health-care reform exploded, this is the season of “17.5k dead women a year.” That’s the body count scaremongers are predicting if the Food and Drug Administration rescinds its provisional approval of the drug Avastin for metastatic breast cancer.
The really interesting thing about "The Social Network" is that while much of the tale is invented, the story tells a larger truth about Silicon Valley’s get-rich-quick culture and the kind of people—like Facebook’s 26-year-old founder and CEO, Mark Zuckerberg—who thrive in this environment.
Seven million Americans are taking prescription drugs for “nonmedical reasons.” Tomorrow, the Drug Enforcement Agency hosts its first national effort to collect unwanted meds to keep them away from people who might abuse or sell them, especially teenagers.
The idea that less is more has long held true in the arts. In the world of gadgets, not so much. Each year’s crop of products is weighted down with more features, more menu options, more, more, more. Apart from this trend stands a little video camera called the Flip.
When Steve Jobs introduced Apple's new tablet computer earlier this year, there were plenty of snickers about the menstrual undertones of the name "iPad." Now it turns out that the device—and its mobile cousins—are actually useful for, uh, tracking periods.
It’s been nearly four years since the nice sonogram technician waved her magic wand over my left testicle and said: “Uh-oh.” At least I think that’s what she said. Your brain tends to blank out when you’re in full-on flop-sweat panic.