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Charlotte Hospital Pioneers New Kind Of Heart Surgery

Apr 17, 2013

A hospital patient in Charlotte is going home Tuesday after doctors successfully treated her with a new kind of heart surgery. Doctors at Carolinas HealthCare System's Sanger Heart and Vascular Institute became the first in the world to try it are among the first to try it.


Charlotte Medical Team Uses 'Ick' Factor To Cure Stubborn GI Infection

Apr 9, 2013
Todd Sumlin / Charlotte Observer

  Pam Kee calls herself a “mixologist.”

But the concoction in her blender comes together at a hospital.

Kee is a nurse at Carolinas Medical Center-University, where she assists Dr. Barry Schneider with an unusual therapy that can cure a potentially deadly gastrointestinal infection.

The treatment is called a fecal transplant – and it’s just what the name implies.

Feces from a healthy donor is transferred into a sick patient to create a new, infection-free environment in the gut.

It may sound disgusting, but it works.

NC DHHS

Governor Pat McCrory outlined a plan to significantly change North Carolina's Medicaid program last week. A key person responsible for filling in the details is Carol Steckel. She's the director of the state's Medicaid program, and she spoke to WFAE's Michael Tomsic about the reasons for the overhaul and how it's designed to work.


Gov. McCrory Announces Big Changes For N.C Medicaid

Apr 3, 2013

North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory plans to make major changes to the state's Medicaid system. About 1.8 1.5 million North Carolinians who are low-income, young, elderly or disabled rely on Medicaid for health coverage.

McCrory said the current system is broken and inefficient.  He pointed to an audit that showed the state has been horrible at managing the cost of the program. He said the state hasn't been much better at managing the care people get, either.

Earlier this month, the Centers for Disease Control warned us about the spread of a deadly, antibiotic-resistant "nightmare bacteria." The strain called CRE has been on the rise for the past decade - tracked in at least 42 states, including North Carolina - and the CDC is urging hospitals to act now. In Charlotte, CRE has infected 18 patients since 2012; seven of them died. The threat has been compared to that of MRSA, a staph infection that has also shown resistance to antibiotics and is now considered a common hospital germ. We'll learn more about these rare but dangerous drug-resistant bacteria - what they are, how they spread, what makes them so strong and how our environment and use of antibiotics might be making them worse. We'll also talk with people on the front lines, dealing with these bacteria in hospitals about what they're doing to try and control them and what patients should know. The rise of superbugs and what to do about them, when Charlotte Talks.

Not everything can be cured with a pill. At least, that’s what we've been finding out in recent years. A new movement has started: the whole health movement. This wave of education and awareness brings with it the encouragement of individuals taking more control of their own health. And how do they do this? Through a plethora of activities and choices like eating less meat, practicing yoga, drinking tea and integrating more preventative measures into their daily routines. Some call this alternative or integrative medicine, but what is integrative medicine? Where did it begin? A conversation about health and integrative medicine, when Charlotte Talks.

Nine of 10 cancer doctors nationwide have had to delay or change chemotherapy treatments because of drug shortages. That's according to a study released last week, and it's another example of how shortages affect patients.


N.C., S.C. Hospitals Deal With 'Nightmare Bacteria'

Mar 10, 2013
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Hospitals in the Carolinas are dealing with a growing threat from a type of superbug. It's only infected a small percentage of patients. But that percentage is on the rise, and the infections can be deadly.

The superbug is called CRE, and a recent report from the Centers for Disease Control describes it as "nightmare bacteria." 

Dr. Katie Passaretti of Carolinas HealthCare System said it's evolved into something extremely difficult to treat.

Viagra, Cialis and Levitra... those erectile dysfunction commercials that air while you're watching sitcoms aren’t just awkward and uncomfortable, according to a new study, they are breaking rules too. Those rules, designed by the pharmaceutical industry itself, are meant to ensure the campaigns educate consumers and avoid targeting audiences for which the message is not age appropriate - like children. But the study out of UNC Charlotte says that 'Big Pharma's' efforts to self-regulate are "an industry-sponsored ruse" with the intention to deflect criticism and block any new Federal regulations. We'll talk with the researchers about direct-to-consumer pharmaceutical marketing - about the effectiveness and the ethics behind the ads. Sex, Lies and Television, when Charlotte Talks.

Eat like a caveman. That's what some doctors are recommending. Stick to lean meats, fruits and vegetables. Cut out refined grains and sugar. Dr. Philip Goscienski is one of them, the "Stone Age Doc" says our cavemen ancestors had the right idea and if we followed the simple ways they lived by, we'd live healthier, longer lives. We'll talk with him about that and meet the founder of a local company who's helping people do just that. Is "paleo" an effective movement towards a healthier life or the oldest fad diet of all time? And in a fast-food, pre-packaged world, can we really cut out sugar and grains? We go back to the cave, when Charlotte Talks.

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