<![CDATA[NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth - Health Connection]]>Copyright 2016http://www.nbcdfw.com/news/health http://media.nbcnewyork.com/designimages/NBC+5-KXAS+Logo+for+Google+News.png NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth http://www.nbcdfw.comen-usWed, 26 Oct 2016 22:39:35 -0500Wed, 26 Oct 2016 22:39:35 -0500NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Volunteer Previews American Cancer Society Walk]]> Wed, 26 Oct 2016 16:22:41 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/10-16-16-Making-Strides-Walk.JPG American Cancer Society volunteer Dr. Stephen Berndt joins NBC 5 live in studio to preview the organization's Making Strides to End Breast Cancer walk.

Photo Credit: NBC 7 San Diego]]>
<![CDATA[Tarrant Co. Confirms First West Nile Virus Death of 2016]]> Wed, 26 Oct 2016 17:39:04 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Mosquito-GettyImages-563546355.jpg

Tarrant County health officials are reporting the county's first death related to West Nile virus of the 2016 season Wednesday.

The victim was a "senior adult" with underlying health conditions, according to Tarrant County Public Health, although additional information was not released.

One person died from complications of West Nile virus in Tarrant County in 2015.

Most people bitten by a West Nile virus-infected mosquito will not show any symptoms. Symptoms, if they appear, are fever, headache, nausea, body aches, swollen lymph nodes and skin rashes.

Fewer than one percent of those infected with West Nile virus experience the serious form of the illness. Serious symptoms include high fever, severe headache, neck stiffness, disorientation, tremors or convulsions, vision loss, muscle weakness and numbness or paralysis.

Photo Credit: LA Times via Getty Images
This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[Two Procedures Help Reduce the Effects of Aging on Skin]]> Wed, 26 Oct 2016 19:46:30 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/laser+wrinkle+treatment.jpg

Wrinkles, brown spots and enlarged pores are just some of the changes that come as we age. But two new FDA-approved treatments are helping people save face as they get older.

"I would love to even out my skin tone," said 53-year-old Laurie Watson.

She loves the outdoors but the sun has taken a toll on her skin.

Rather than undergo surgery Watson is choosing two new procedures to help erase the signs of aging. BBL, or Broadband Light, uses flashes of light specifically designed to treat brown spots and redness by targeting blood vessels and pigment in the skin. BBL takes about 20 minutes, is not painful, and has no downtime at all.

"What happens is the pigment in your skin absorbs the light, and by absorbing it with that energy, it breaks apart the pigment cells," explained Dr. Mathew M. Avram, director of MGH Dermatology Laser & Cosmetic Center at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.

In addition to the pigment problem Watson wanted to smooth out her skin so she added a new laser treatment called Halo. To make it more comfortable doctors put on a topical anesthetic for the half-hour procedure.

"It only treats a small portion of the skin when you are doing the treatment, but it affects the entire skin and gives benefits to the entire skin," Avram said.

Halo uses two lasers, creating columns of heat throughout the face and helps correct pigment and pore size as well as texture and tone.

"I think things did soften and even out," said Watson.

Avram said if patients stay out of the sun, the glowing results can last a few years.

The average cost of a BBL treatment is $400-$600 and is recommended several times a year. Halo costs about $1,300 per treatment and typically patients need just one or two sessions that can last a few years.

There are certain side effects that may occur after BBL treatment. The spots from the laser may start to darken, and there could also be reddening of the skin. This typically subsides within a couple of hours, and the dark spots will fade over the course of one to three weeks. As for the safety of the BBL treatment, it has been rigorously tested in clinical studies and has been approved by the FDA.

<![CDATA[FDA Steps Up Warnings About Testosterone Use]]> Wed, 26 Oct 2016 13:38:50 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/AP_16159721727583-fda-generic.jpg

The FDA announced Tuesday that it is increasing warnings against testosterone and other steroids, NBC News reported.

It has been found that these drugs can be easily abused, according to the FDA, in addition to existing concerns of heart attacks, personality changes and infertility. 

"Reported serious adverse outcomes include heart attack, heart failure, stroke, depression, hostility, aggression, liver toxicity and male infertility," said a statement from the FDA. "Individuals abusing high doses of testosterone have also reported withdrawal symptoms, such as depression, fatigue, irritability, loss of appetite, decreased libido and insomnia."

Testosterone used to fight the effects of aging has been heavily criticized by the FDA. It is currently a $2 billion industry with men purchasing gels, pills and injections. 

Photo Credit: AP, File]]>
<![CDATA[New Hip Replacement Surgery Dramatically Improves Recovery Time]]> Wed, 26 Oct 2016 11:43:09 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/hip-replacement.jpg A hip replacement surgery using an anterior approach has people up and walking hours after surgery and recovering much more quickly.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Push for Dental Sealant Programs in Schools]]> Wed, 26 Oct 2016 07:24:52 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/dental-sealant.jpg

Children dealing with dental disease sometimes have trouble eating, speaking and even learning.

A new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows there is a lack of dental sealant used for school-age children. Some dentist and researchers think more school-based sealant programs could help fix the sealant shortage before it grows into a dental dilemma.

Dr. Robert Morgan, a pediatric dentist in Richardson, explains that sealants are basically a smooth protective coating put over teeth.

"Probably two of the greatest inventions that have happened in dentistry in recent times have been fluoride and sealants,” he said. “It takes it from a rough surface to a smooth surface. Easier to clean and less likely to trap bacteria.”

Morgan calls the practice cost-efficient and about 80 percent effective in protecting against the formation of cavities.

"Non-invasive, not uncomfortable," Morgan said. "Literally no more difficult than painting your nails."

Dental pain could take children out of classrooms and make it more difficult for them to concentrate when in school.

"If you could assess that a child doesn't have any cavities and they are healthy, put sealants on their teeth so that now they are not missing school to have a fillings done. They are not missing school because they have a toothache," Morgan said. “You have less missed school for the child, less risk of discomfort, a lower cavity rate, mom's not taking off from work and it's a great system.”

Morgan said the cost of a sealant is anywhere from $15 to $60 while fillings can cost from $60 to $250. Prevention could have money.

There is some opposition to a school-based sealant program, as some say the sealants aren’t guaranteed and students can still get cavities.

Free sealant programs are available in some Texas schools. The Department of State Health and Services recommends checking with your child’s school about eligibility. 

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Male Breast Cancer Survivor Shares Inspirational Battle]]> Wed, 26 Oct 2016 04:28:15 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Avist+Owens.jpg

In this final week of breast cancer awareness month, we are sharing a part of the story you rarely see: a man who received the diagnosis.

Avist Owens can often be found taking care of his horse, Sandy, at his property in Dallas.

He says the animal is part of his family, and like family, she helped him through some of his darkest days, including two bouts with cancer.

"It was hell to pay," he said.

Owens overcame bladder cancer in 2006. The cancer returned in 2015 when he was diagnosed with breast cancer.

Owens said he felt a small lump in his right breast.

"It's not in the nipple, it's under the nipple and you could just feel it in the muscle part," he explained.

Right away, Owens told his doctor about the lump. The doctor ordered a mammogram and a biopsy. Three days later, he learned he had breast cancer.

"I was shocked because I felt like I was healthy," he said.

Owens found taking care of his horse therapeutic.

"She's been like an inspiration. I can talk to her and she doesn't talk back," Owens said.

Owens finds the same sense of understanding at a support group called Men for Men. The group meets every month at Methodist Charlton Medical Center in Dallas to share stories about a battle too many fight in private.

"To them, that's something that they conceal so to have a support group where they can come in and openly talk about it to other men who also have breast cancer really opens the door for them," said breast cancer nurse navigator Vicki Hallum.

"I will tell anybody you need a friend, you can't go through this by yourself," Owens said.

Breast cancer is about 100-times less common in men than women.

The American Cancer Society estimates about 2,600 men will be diagnosed this year in the United States.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Breast Cancer Awareness in American Indian Population]]> Wed, 26 Oct 2016 04:31:44 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/mammogram3.jpg

The Urban Inter-Tribal Center of Dallas is encouraging breast cancer screening in the American Indian population.

Tuesday, the American Cancer Society held its "Crucial Catch" initiative, a parternship with the National Football League, at the center.

Kenwin Cummings, a former Dallas Cowboy and member of the Lumbe tribe, spoke to the group.

"I grew in a family full of women. I was the only son. I had four sisters, a mother and a grandmother, and it's been in my family. Breast cancer has affected my family," Cummings said.

Officials at the center say they noticed an increase in women dying from breast cancer and they attribute to lack of screening.

The American Cancer Society has awarded a $50,000 grant to the Urban Inter-Tribal Center of Texas to increase brast cancer screening rates in Dallas.

The center plans to reach uninsured and underinsured women to increase awareness of the importance of having annual mammograms.

"Statistically, American-Indian women have a lesser chance of getting breast cancer, but most of our women aren't educated enough to understand how important it is for early detection," Cummings said.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Health Headlines: SIDS, Concussions]]> Mon, 24 Oct 2016 17:51:26 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/180*120/tlmd_baby_sleeping_bebe_durmiendo_shutterstock_206555212.jpg New guidelines are out to help protect your baby against sudden infant death syndrome. And if your young football player has never had a concussion, he may still at risk for brain trauma. Health reporter Bianca Castro has Monday's health headlines.

Photo Credit: Shutterstock]]>
<![CDATA[The DMN's Dr. Seema Yasmin: Wrong Antibiotic Treatment]]> Tue, 25 Oct 2016 11:58:10 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/seema-antibiotics.jpg The Dallas Morning News' medical expert Dr. Seema Yasmin joins NBC 5 live via satellite to talk people being treated for ear and sinus infections with the wrong antibiotics.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Infants, Parents Should Share Room: New Guidelines]]> Mon, 24 Oct 2016 10:35:11 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/NC_sleepstandards1024_1920x1080.jpg The American Academy of Pediatrics has released updated guidelines for new parents on infant sleep safety. Experts say room sharing could reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) by half and recommend babies sleep in a crib or bassinet in the parent's bedroom for at least the first six months and up to age 1. ]]> <![CDATA[Kaufman County Athletes Tested For Heart Health]]> Fri, 21 Oct 2016 19:56:35 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/ecg+heart+test.jpg

A life-saving service is being offered for free to student athletes in Kaufman County.

According to the American Heart Association, more than 1,300 high school and college aged students die from heart problems each year and there's a push to get every high school student screened, starting in Kaufman County.

Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Kaufman raised money to purchase a portable ECG device.

The funds used to purchase the equipment came from Texas Health Kaufman’s Black Tie Ball, an annual community fundraiser, focused on improving cardiovascular health in Kaufman and the surrounding areas.

It's a five minute procedure that can tell doctors if a student has any risk of sudden cardiac death.

Doctors say it provides results more reliable than the standard EKG for teens ages 14 to 18.

They're providing the screening for free.

"It doesn't happen often, but when a young child dies, it's just devastating for everyone, physicians included. So, we want to try and find better ways to pick them out of the basket and identify them and help them live a normal life," said Dr. Paul Guttuso, physician at Texas Health Kaufman.

If doctors find an issue with a student's ECG reading, the student would go to a cardiologist for a follow-up.

That visit is also free if a family can't afford it.

"We are trying to get that knowledge and that application to the small communities around here people that would not otherwise have that available to them," said Guttuso.

Clacie Terry, a tenth-grader at Kaufman High, received a normal reading, but says she's happy to have the peace of mind.

"I like that they can bring it to all the different towns so every one can be sure that they're safe," said Terry.

Bringing this kind of access to heart health technology to the rural towns in Kaufman County was a priority for the health team, said officials at Texas Health Resources.

They report that the number of heart disease-related deaths is about 247 for 100,000 people, twice the national average.

“We believe part of the reason that Kaufman County experiences a higher incidence of cardiovascular complexities comes from the feedback that we received in our recent Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA). The responses accumulated from the community on their own health behaviors and needs show that Kaufman and the surrounding communities have lower indicators of healthy behaviors, such as exercise and regular screenings," said Ajith Pai, PharmD, MBA, RPh, Professional & Support Services Officer/Director of Pharmacy.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Doctor Discusses Breast Cancer Awareness]]> Fri, 21 Oct 2016 16:44:59 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/mammogram3.jpg More than 200,000 women are diagnosed with breast cancer every year, and more than 400,000 women died from it in 2015, according to the American Cancer Society. Dr. Angela Seda, surgeon with Texas Breast Specialists, helps shed light on this disease.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Pediatrics Group Lifts 'No Screens Under 2' Rule]]> Fri, 21 Oct 2016 14:32:41 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/180*120/GettyImages-135280995.jpg

The American Academy of Pediatrics issued new screen media guidelines for parents with infants and young children, amending its previous recommendation that outright banned screens for children under the age of two.

In its policy statement released Friday, the AAP says it’s OK for children under the age of 18 months to Skype or Face Time with grandma and grandpa, and for older children and teens to do some of their socializing, learning and playing online – as long as they put down their devices long enough to sleep, exercise, eat, and engage in rich offline lives. 

The nation's leading group of pediatricians recommends children under 18 months, with the exception of video chatting, should avoid screens. Children between 18 months and 24 months should only be introduced to digital media that is high-quality and parents should watch it with their children in order to help them process what they’re seeing.

For children ages 2-5, digital media use should be limited to one hour a day. The guidelines again recommend high-quality, education media suited for children, such as Sesame Street and PBS.

Overall, parents should avoid using media to calm a child or replace physical activity. Parents are also recommended by the AAP to have media-free time with their children and media-free zones in the house. Parents should also have conversations with children about online safety and respecting people both on and offline.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Preimplantation Genetic Testing May Help Fertility Struggles]]> Fri, 21 Oct 2016 10:53:35 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/NC-Fertility-Testing.jpg Preimplantation genetic testing before in-vitro fertilization virtually eliminates multiple births and helps patients struggling with infertility achieve pregnancy more quickly.

Photo Credit: KSL]]>
<![CDATA[New Advice: Parents Should Share Screentime with Kids]]> Fri, 21 Oct 2016 10:46:47 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/NC_mediakids1020_1920x1080.jpg Instead of playing a constant game of keep-away, parents are now encouraged to join the fun. Updated guidance from the American Academy of Pediatrics on kids' media usage represents a shift to making moms and dads "media mentors." Previously the influential group of pediatricians suggested no media before age 2. Now they say there's evidence toddlers as young as 18 months could learn and benefit from some forms of technology, as long as parents are there to guide them and the technology is not overly stimulating.

Photo Credit: NBC News]]>
<![CDATA[Dallas' First 'Brain Gym' Teaching Meditation Techniques]]> Thu, 20 Oct 2016 23:03:40 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/meditation3.jpg

In the middle of your busy work day, would you ever consider taking a break to strengthen your brain? There’s a new business in Dallas that’s considered a “brain gym,” it’s a peaceful space that’s focused on improving your brain by using meditation.

Mastermind is a new meditation center in Dallas that’s offering research-proven results that offer, “improved focus, clarity, memory retention, reduction in stress. Our whole idea is a healthy mind equals a healthy body,” said Chelsey Charbeneau, meditation teacher

What makes Mastermind different from other meditation centers is that their whole focus is improving your brain function.

“This is the first of its kind. There are meditation studios in the country but this is the first ‘brain gym,’ so everything we do here is focused on your brain.”

The class NBC 5 attended was working to strengthen memory.

“I want you to recall as many things as you can from yesterday,” Charbeneau told the class.

Other guided meditation classes are for improved energy, focus, intention, and gratitude.

“So I found myself thanking people more, or telling people how I appreciate them more, based on some of the classes that we’ve had,” said Shawn Williams.

Williams said he’s meditated on and off over the years but scheduling a meditation at Mastermind made it easier for him to get it done.

“It was like a 30 minute nap, but you weren’t sleeping, and I was like, ‘This is the best!’” said Lexi Holt.

Meditation is an ancient technique that continues to help people improve all aspects of their lives.

“It really is a calming experience and one that puts you in a great frame of mind, which puts you in a positive mood for the rest of the day,” said Ryan Trimble.

“So we’re all stressed and doing too much and this place provides a little haven for you to rejuvenate,” said Charbeneau.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Woman With Cancer: '#JuJuOnThatChemo']]> Thu, 20 Oct 2016 14:21:49 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/214*120/chemo-dance-101916.PNG

A Texas woman is not letting cancer and chemo get her down. Ana-Alecia Ayala, who’s battling a rare form of uterine sarcoma, has joined the viral dance craze — and has a heartwarming message to share.

In a social media post shared Tuesday, Ayala, in her hospital gown and medical tubes attached to her, dances to "JuJu On That Beat" with her friend Danielle Andrus during a chemotherapy session at Baylor T. Boone Pickens Cancer Hospital in Dallas.

"We want to show the world that dancing and laughter is the best medicine," wrote Ayala, who's from Dallas. "#JustForFun #ChemoSucks #CancerAwareness #JuJuOnThatBeat #JuJuOnThatChemo."

Ayala, who has rhabdomyosarcoma, has had two surgeries for tumor removal and port placement since she was diagnosed in December 2015. She has been in chemo since January, according to her GoFundMe.

Photo Credit: Ana-Alecia Ayala]]>
<![CDATA[Therapy Dogs Help Children, Victims Find Comfort in Court]]> Thu, 20 Oct 2016 13:31:53 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/NC_courtdogs1020_1920x1080.jpg

California's Fresno County District Attorney is calling on therapy dogs to help children and other victims of crimes feel comfortable while taking the witness stand.

District Attorney Lisa Smittcamp says she expects the dogs to be busy.

"A lot of the times you're asking little children about very adult things. Sometimes you are asking them to talk about some of the worst things that have ever happened in their life, so if they can have a dog to make them comfortable and make them feel safe, we are happy to provide that service," said Smittcamp.

Barbara Handly trains some of the therapy dogs. She brought the first dog into a Fresno County courtroom this week to support a young girl on the witness stand.

"When she would get upset and start to cry they would call for a break and then the dog would get up and put his paws around her neck and licked her face until she quit crying and then she'd be ready to testify again and the dog would go back under the witness stand," said Handly.

Read more on this story at YourCentralValley.com.

Photo Credit: KSL]]>
<![CDATA[Labor Pains, Baby Delivery Surprise Woman]]> Fri, 21 Oct 2016 01:02:12 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/NC_suprisebaby1019_1920x1080.jpg

One Norton, Massachusetts woman got the shock of a lifetime this past weekend when she unexpectedly gave birth to a child that she says she didn't know she was pregnant with.

Ileana Martinez was admitted to the hospital Sunday after she came in with a bad stomachache.

The new mother assumed it was cramping, but later learned from the doctors she was 38 weeks along.

"I had no morning sickness, my period was normal, I had no cravings and no extreme weight gain. I gained five pounds and that is just from me not working out like I used to," Martinez said.

The bewildered new mother said she is thankful for her new son, but wishes she had more time to prepare for his arrival.

Read more on this story at NECN.com.

Photo Credit: NECN]]>
<![CDATA[Teen Charged in 'Pink' Overdose Deaths]]> Thu, 20 Oct 2016 11:57:05 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/NC_pink_1920x1080.jpg

A Park City, Utah teenager now faces drug and endangerment charges in the deaths of two 13-year-old boys suspected of overdosing on the dangerous synthetic opioid nicknamed "pink."

The 15-year-old boy was charged Wednesday with distribution of a controlled or counterfeit substance, a second-degree felony, and reckless endangerment, a class A misdemeanor.

The charges were filed in 3rd District Juvenile Court in Summit County.

A Utah State Courts spokesman confirmed that the charges are tied to the deaths of Grant Seaver and his friend Ryan Ainsworth, who were found dead within 48 hours of each other last month.

Investigators are waiting for toxicology results to determine their causes of death.

Read more on this story at KSL.com.

Photo Credit: KSL]]>
<![CDATA[Largest Autism Study in History Now Underway]]> Wed, 19 Oct 2016 18:00:16 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/autism+study.jpg

Autism spectrum disorders affect one in 68 people. Now researchers are collecting information and DNA samples from 50,000 people with autism and their family members, and they're sharing that information with other top autism experts and researchers in the nation. They believe that such a large database of information will start to unravel some of the genetic mysteries behind the disorder.

With the swipe of a cotton swab, Ben Tarasewicz, 14, is providing researchers a valuable piece of the autism puzzle: his DNA.

Ben's mother, Andrea Tarasewicz, says that she believes "any information they can get from this that will help him or the next person, it's what we all should be doing."

The SPARK autism study, which stands for Simons Foundation Powering Autism Research for Knowledge, is collecting medical and behavioral information, along with DNA samples.

"Simply by saying that we need 50,000 people with autism to be registered, we're acknowledging that there's so much more to know. And we need all of these people in this massive database," said Latha Soorya, Ph.D., an autism researcher at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago.

Having studied autism spectrum disorders for 25 years, Soorya believes a study of this scale will allow researchers to answer exactly what makes up the spectrum and why some people fall on it.

"That's gonna speed up research in a way that we don't have the ability to do now," Soorya said.

Researchers used to know of only one or two genes that played a role in autism. To date, 50 genes have been identified. Researchers believe, by the end of the study, it's possible they will have identified 300 genes or more, which will give them a better understanding of how genetics, biology and environment all play a role.

"The whole thing is going to make it easier for somebody else because the day-to-day grind is not an easy one," Andrea Tarasewicz said.

SPARK researchers are still looking for more people with autism and their families to sign up for the study. You can even do it online and receive a free sample collection kit that you can mail in. Those who participate will have access to care and support groups where they can share information and learn about any new developments researchers make along the way. You can go to sparkforautism.org for more information.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Arthritis Patients Say Massage Can Help Soothe Pain]]> Wed, 19 Oct 2016 10:34:31 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/NC_Arthritis-Massage.jpg Arthritis affects millions of Americans and some patients say massage helps them deal with the pain.

Photo Credit: NBC]]>
<![CDATA[Doctor, Patient on How to Help Seizure, Stroke Sufferers]]> Wed, 19 Oct 2016 10:37:36 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/NC_Seizure.jpg Witnessing the physical effects of strokes and seizures can cause others to freeze, not knowing what to do, or worse, panic and do more harm than good. Now, a doctor and his patient are working to raise awareness on how to manage such occurrences.

Photo Credit: NBC]]>
<![CDATA[FDA Approves New Lip Filler Now Available In North Texas]]> Tue, 18 Oct 2016 17:41:59 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/lip+filler.jpg

The American Society of Plastic Surgeons says a record number of Americans underwent lip augmentation procedures last year and yet another lip filler hits the market for 2016.

Volbella, from the drug makers of Botox, is the only FDA-approved filler to increase lip fullness and softens the appearance of lines around the mouth through one year.

Dr. Fiona Wright, with Skin M.D. and Beyond in Plano, is one of the first North Texas dermatologists to offer the product to her clients.

"It’s FDA-approved and specifically designed for the lips and patients have noticed that it feels very smooth and natural when they’re making movements and talking and chewing," said Wright.

By comparison, Wright says other dermal fillers may not always offer the same results.

"Many people are afraid of the lips being overfilled or having that pursed or bee sting look to the lips. The unique thing of Volbella is that I don’t need very much material in order to make the correct result, having a good contour, removing the wrinkles," she said.

Beth Marshall drove in from Oklahoma to be one of the first to receive Volbella injections.

"I barrel race as a hobby, so I’m outside a lot," said Marshall.

"No matter what I do, no matter what kind of protection I wear, I always seem to get this part of my face exposed. So, it does take a beating from the sun and there are lines there that weren't there a few years ago," she added, referring to her lips.

Wright says at a cost of $400, Volbella is a good option for women on a budget since it lasts twice as long as other fillers.

"When other products are lasting about six months, you're gonna have to repeat that purchase of $450-$600 every six months. Where with Volbella, you're gonna spend $400 and that's going to be on a yearly basis," Wright said.

Marshall seems pleased with the results after a series of injections.

"I hadn't seen these lips like this since I was 17-years-old!" Marshall said.

According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, complications from dermal fillers are uncommon, but potential risks include bruising or bleeding and infection.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Mom's Update on Conjoined Twins]]> Tue, 18 Oct 2016 08:12:23 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/conjoined+twins+gofundme+thumb.png

Nicole McDonald has reluctantly documented her family's experience as her twin sons who were attached at the head faced their most difficult surgery yet last week. But if supporters of her family read anything she hopes, it's her message to them and the doctors who saved her children. 

In a lengthy and emotional Facebook update on Saturday, the Illinois mother shared that as she and her husband "emerged from the depths of the hospital" in New York City last week, they were forced to face the fact that their family's private battle has quickly become a national story. 

"For those of you who don't know us, it might be interesting to note that we do not have TV or Internet access at home," she wrote. "We don't get to watch the news on a regular basis and we have literally spent the last 36 hours at the boys' bedside or waiting for updates from the doctors in the Caregiver Support Center at Montefiore."

McDonald's 13-month old sons, Jadon and Anias, were separated following 16 hours of surgery at Montefiore Medical Center. 

McDonald noted that at first, she didn't want to take her family's unique situation public, but agreed because they wanted to help show the medical miracle that would soon separate her sons. 

"Our biggest desire was to show how brilliant the team at Montefiore has been and to give the hospital the credit it deserves," she wrote. "The real heroes of this story are the people who have put countless hours, days and months into the success of today."

McDonald had been sharing updates on the surgery as the boys returned to their room one by one. 

Hours later, McDonald wrote that the brothers had been "finally reunited."

"How surreal. I now realize that I always saw you as separate because seeing you like this is really nothing different to me," McDonald wrote. "When I stand at your bedside, Jadon, it's almost as if Anias is still there. Anias, when I leaned over you I protected my hair from Jadon. But the view is still the same. This is how I always saw you. I love you so much. Now it's time to step forward into the new chapter of our life. I'm ready to fight and I know you are too."

McDonald earlier described the atmosphere as "one of celebration mixed with uncertainty." She says Jadon did better than Anias during the procedure, adding that doctors predict he may not be able to move part of his body at first. 

"When they told me they were wheeling Jadon up first, it took me a second to comprehend," she wrote. "I actually asked why they rearranged the room because I hadn't really internalized the idea that there would be 2 beds in here."

McDonald and her husband first found out they were having twins during a routine ultrasound when she was 17 weeks pregnant. But hours after learning the big news, the couple was called back for a repeat ultrasound, a call she said is "every pregnant mother's nightmare."

"It was on that day, in that dark room, that our whole life changed," McDonald wrote in a GoFundMe page for the family. "I was informed that I was pregnant with craniopagus twins, which in normal language means twins who are joined at the head. I was given the option on many occasions to abort my precious babies. I kindly declined. I had heard their heart beats...they spent their life listening to mine. It was my job as their mother to give them life and I decided that I would give everything up, if need be, to do so. Miracles happen...and there is one (really, two :)) unfolding before our very eyes."

McDonald went into labor on Sept. 9, 2015 and an emergency c-section was performed at Rush University Medical Center. 

The boys were named Jadon and Anias. 

While the babies started having some health problems shortly after birth, things quickly "went downhill" for the McDonald family.

"Anias started having trouble breathing," McDonald wrote. "Because of the way he was positioned in my belly, his chin was against his chest and his jaw couldn't grow. His airway was also constricted. As he required more oxygen for day to day life, his breathing got worse and worse, until eventually he was back on oxygen."

Months later, the couple met with a specialist in hopes of successfully separating the twins. Fast forward to October, the babies have undergone their final surgery, but their most difficult. 

The family's GoFundMe page had raised $161,161 as of Friday, exceeding their goal of $100,000 to aid with the babies' medical care. 

McDonald thanked those who helped her family during the trying time, saying "each and every one of you is a hero in your own way."

"The people who literally lift us up and carry us when we feel like we just can't take another step. We are so blessed to have so much support in our corner," she wrote. 

Most recently, McDonald said the boys are stable, but "there are some things happening that I can't really find the words to explain or allow myself to dwell on."

"Every thing changes from hour to hour and we just have to remember that the brain responds in crazy ways when it's been cut through," she wrote. "We still cannot hold the boys because they are intubated so we sit at their bedside and hold their hands, give them massages and kiss their faces. When I have a better understanding of their actual status, I will do my best to update. Thank you so much for your heartfelt support."

This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.]]>
<![CDATA[The DMN's Dr. Seema Yasmin: Costly Chemicals]]> Tue, 18 Oct 2016 12:01:42 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/seema-pesticides.jpg The Dallas Morning News' medical expert Dr. Seema Yasmin joins NBC 5 live to discuss a study on the billions of dollars spent per year on the health impact of chemicals like pesticides.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Previewing Walk to End Alzheimers]]> Tue, 18 Oct 2016 12:09:38 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/paul-morgan.jpg Paul Morgan of the North Texas Chapter of the Alzheimer's Association joins NBC 5 live in studio to talk about the group's Walk to End Alzheimer's fundraiser.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Nina Pham Still Working to Settle Ebola Lawsuit: Attorneys]]> Mon, 17 Oct 2016 19:05:06 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/11a_v-nina_pham_trial_KXASAERB_1200x675_738776131808.jpg

Two years after the Ebola crisis hit Dallas, one of the nurses infected is still pursuing a lawsuit against Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital, where she worked.

Nina Pham filed the lawsuit in March 2015. She says the hospital's lack of training, poor equipment and violations of her privacy after she was infected are a symbol of corporate neglect.

NBC 5's media partners at The Dallas Morning News reported Monday that Pham's attorneys are close to reaching a settlement. But when NBC 5 reached out to those attorneys, they said that no settlement has been signed.

Pham says the hospital posted a video of her sick in the hospital without her consent, and she says she has suffered hair loss, physical pain and insomnia since recovering from Ebola.

The man she was treating, Thomas Duncan, died from the Ebola virus while in the hospital.

According to The Dallas Morning News, Pham is still on the hospital's payroll.

<![CDATA[Apps Connect Patients with Medical Help in an Emergency]]> Mon, 17 Oct 2016 17:39:01 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/medical+app.jpg

Today, there seems to be an app for just about everything. Now new technology can give patients and doctors critical time when they need it most.

Things are looking up for Armand Kaladi, just a few months after he had a stroke.

"I got myself out of the car and I basically fell on the ground because my whole left side was paralyzed. It had no strength, no activity to it," Kaladi said.

Kaladi knew he was in trouble. Within minutes after a stroke brain cells begin to die. Every 30 minutes that passes without treatment equals an 18-percent reduction in the chance of a good outcome. Experts say patients need to be inside a hospital within 60 minutes so they can prevent permanent damage.

But in Kaladi's case, an app called Pulsara was a life-saving difference. The hospital has patient information before arrival.

Dr. Brijesh Mehta, neurointerventional surgeon at Memorial Healthcare System in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, explains.

"One notification goes to all the staff so we're all on the same page and when the patient arrives, we're ready," Mehta said.

"We've really seen a huge, huge reduction in time in getting patients to treatment by the new process we've created here and the inclusion of some of these technologies," said Mark Ellis, rescue fire chief at Hallandale Beach Fire in Florida.

The potentially life-saving app takes just seconds to use, when seconds matter.

"In my case, it could've been the difference in being paralyzed, saving my life or just enjoying a normal lifestyle," said Kaladi.

Pulsara is just one form of technology EMS is using in the field to communicate with doctors at the hospital.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Healing Tattoos For Breast Cancer Survivors]]> Mon, 17 Oct 2016 15:17:54 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/3d+nipple+tattoo+breast+cancer.jpg

Editor's note: This story contains images of breast cancer survivors after reconstructive surgery, and may not be suitable for all audiences.

Marie Sena is an accomplished tattoo artist and medical illustrator who works from her studio, Electric Eye, at Jefferson Tower in Oak Cliff.

A few years ago, she decided to combine her talents to become a medical tattoo artist and is now changing the lives of breast cancer survivors.

Dozens of women who've had breast reconstruction after mastectomies have come to Sena for a 3-D nipple tattoo.

Sena uses skin matching coloring, shading and extreme attention to detail to tattoo a realistic-looking nipple onto the reconstructed breast.

One of her clients, Sabrina Lamb, said before the nipple tattoo, her healing process wasn't complete.

"Physically, you get over the mastectomy. You get over the chemo and radiation, but you don't get over it mentally. You're just not the same. That's why I searched for a 3-D tattoo, and that's why I came here," said Lamb.

"The second she did the tattoo and I stood up and looked in the mirror, I felt whole," said Lamb.

Stayci Hawthorn was diagnosed with breast cancer at just 37 years old.

She said after a double mastectomy and reconstruction surgery, she felt so far from whom she used to be, she showered in the dark.

"They made it sound like you can have whatever size of breasts you want and everything will be great, but that's not how it is. You're left with scars, and when you look in the mirror and you don't look anything like what you used to look like, it's tough," said Hawthorn.

She got her 3-D nipple tattoos last August.

"After going for six years with no nipples, it's like 'Wow.' You can't stop looking at them," said Hawthorn.

"I think the best thing I can say is I feel perfectly imperfect. She (Sena) made me feel whole again," Hawthorn added.

To learn more about Marie Sena and 3-D nipple tattoos, visit her website, Dallas Medical Tattoo.

The TODAY Show recently featured the process of 3-D nipple tattoos. To read more, visit TODAY.com.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Racial Disparities in Breast Cancer Rates, Report Finds]]> Fri, 14 Oct 2016 13:42:53 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/strides6-PIC_0.jpg

Despite innovative technology for detection and treatment of breast cancer, black women continue to have the highest rate of mortality, a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention revealed.

The report released on Thursday found that black and white women now have roughly similar incidences of breast cancer. For black women, this is bad news; for the past 40 years, they have had the lowest prevalence of breast cancer. That health advantage has disappeared, with increased incidences of cancer.

In addition to increased frequency of breast cancer, the death rate is higher for black women than white women by about 40 percent. White women are seeing a faster decrease in mortality.

The CDC report noted that the prevalence of cancer for white women has steadily decreased, and increased for black women, especially for those 60-79 years old. These trends are unique to black women; overall, the trends for the last few decades have shown less incidence and mortality from breast cancer.

While the relationship between obesity and breast cancer is unknown, the incidence of both have increased in black populations, according to the report. Increased physical activity and healthy diet to maintain a healthy weight may help in subsiding the incidence of breast cancer, the report says.

But above all, the report suggested that if care for all women was equal, there might be less exaggerated differences between black and white women.

“Measures to ensure access to quality care and the best-available treatments for all women diagnosed with breast cancer can help address these racial disparities,” it said.

Photo Credit: NBC7]]>
<![CDATA[Mysterious Polio-Like Illness Affecting North Texas Children]]> Wed, 19 Oct 2016 18:49:54 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/paralysis-illness.jpg

Scientists from coast-to-coast are studying an increase in cases of a polio-like illness in children.

As of August, at least 50 people in 24 states were confirmed to have acute flaccid myelitis, or AFM, a viral illness that targets the body’s nervous system and can lead to paralysis and death.

Eleven of those cases are in Texas and at least five of them are in North Texas, according to doctors.

Infection with AFM leads to the limb weakness and paralysis.

Other symptoms include drooping eyelids, facial weakness and slurred speech, breathing problems, gastrointestinal infections and difficulty swallowing.

"The similarities to polio are frightening and real," said Dr. Benjamin Greenberg, pediatric neurologist at Children's Health and associate professor at UT Southwestern Medical Center.

"What we see in children today is quite similar to what we saw in polio going back over a hundred years," Greenberg said.

Doctors are troubled by the increase in cases this year.

"We think we are going to see more cases. We don't know how many. When we look to 2014, we saw a spike in cases, going through July, August and September. Then, as it got to October, November, December, the cases declined, but we hope we are on the tail end."

Greenberg says the suspected cause of the condition is a virus called enterovirus-D68.

"We think this is triggered by a virus, specifically something called the enterovirus-D68 sub type, but there's a lot of debate on proving causation. In 2014, there was a large outbreak nationwide. We saw 120 kids of more nationwide come down with this paralytic conditions," Greenberg said.

"Not all kids recover and we are still looking at ways to improve those outcomes in any way possible. There's nationwide study trying to understand why some people get this condition and other don't, and of those who get it, why it's severe or mild," he adds.

Enterovirus-D68 is transmitted through casual contact and doctors say the best prevention is proper hygiene, like washing hands and avoiding contact with others while sick.

It's still not clear, however, whether the virus was the definite cause of AFM in 10-year-old Faith Dibley, of Frisco.

She went to bed one Saturday night in July with a strange pain in her left hand.

"It was stinging, so I thought I might have just injured it. I thought I needed a good night sleep," she said.

By Sunday morning, she wasn't able to move her legs, in addition to her left hand.

Her parents, Glenn and Kittren Dibley, say they knew right away they needed to take Faith to the emergency room.

"Her telling us, 'I can't walk, my legs feel funny,' and of course, her hands were still in a closed abnormal position," said Glenn Dibley, as he described the point they decided Faith needed medical attention.

They took her to Children's Medical Center of Dallas, where doctors had treated several cases like hers before.

They gave her therapies to "dampen down the immune system" in her spinal cord, which was inflamed, according to Dr. Greenberg, who says there is no FDA approved treatment therapies for AFM.

Faith recovered function of legs but still needs occupational therapy to regain full function of her left hand.

"I always thought when I was in the hospital, 'Why me? Why did it have to be me that got it out of billions of other people?' I was confused but I realize that God, he knows what's best so I was just trusting that it's gonna heal. It is going to get better so whatever happened, it's for the best," Faith said.

Both the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Texas Department of Health and Human Services have issued warnings about the uptick in AFM cases and are asking doctors to report any suspected cases to them as soon as possible.

Doctors at UT Southwestern and Children's Health are the lead site of an international study on Myelitis.

They say if your child develops any kind of weakness in the arms or legs, you should get him or her to the pediatrician right away.

"The likelihood is they will never become paralyzed. This is an extremely rare event. If you ever have a child develop weakness of any kind, weakness of arm or leg, it is very important to seek medical care with pediatrician," Greenberg said.

NBC News: Mysterious Polio-Like Illness Paralyzing U.S. Children

Photo Credit: Dibley Family]]>
<![CDATA[TMS: Providing Hope for People With Depression]]> Mon, 17 Oct 2016 16:45:12 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/transcranial-magnetic-stimulation.jpg

Depression is a subject that is starting to gain more attention and funding in our country, but many still don't realize how prevalent the issue is.

Nearly 350 million people worldwide are affected by some form of depression, according to the World Health Organization.

About 11 percent of adolescents have a depressive disorder by the age of 18 and 16 million adults in the United States will have at least one major depressive episode during the course of a year. That is approximately 6.9 percent of all adults in the country.

Now, there is a treatment that may be able to help a lot of those people is becoming more mainstream and being accepted by more health care companies.

Tyler Kirkpatrick has been dealing with depression for most of his life. He says he thinks it set in during his teen years.

“I think it set in sometime around 13 or 14, I went from being a happy kid to being depressed,” he said.

And for Kirkpatrick, typical medications were not effective.

“I started with all these meds," he said. "Every single one, the side effects were too much, or they made me more depressed or they just didn't work”

That’s when Plano psychiatrist Dr. Dhiren Patel stepped in with transcranial magnetic stimulation. TMS uses pulses from a magnet to affect your brain in a way that medications typically don't respond to.

“This is a big change in our thought process in treating depression," he said. "The patients we treat with TMS, they have tried 3 or 4 meds and because of side effects or other problems they’re not really taking it and it doesn't work well for their mood.”

Kirkpatrick started with TMS about a month ago and the difference, he says, is huge.

"I still struggle with daily challenges, I still have some mood swings, but when I look back, I woke up with depression and I went to bed with depression, and not just depression but despair.” he said. “Every time I had a hopeful thought, I'd have a thought that no, you can't do that. And now it's switched."

“I'm not dealing with the feelings of hopelessness anymore. They're just gone," he said. "It is amazing. It's changed my life.”

Many insurance companies are now covering this relatively new form of treatment. And if you were wondering, Kirkpatrick insists it's not painful. A bit strange the first few times you do it, but not uncomfortable at all.

And Kirkpatrick's not an exception, as 80 percent of patients see results from TMS. Patel says it's complete remission for some and 50 percent improvement for others, which is huge for someone who has not seen any change in year.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Promising News For Children With Peanut Allergies]]> Thu, 13 Oct 2016 04:14:37 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/peanut+allergy.jpg

New research shows children, some as young as nine-months-old, with peanut allergies can successfully become desensitized to nuts by eating small doses of peanut protein.

To reduce the risk of life-threatening allergic reactions, researchers at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine have been studying the use of oral immunotherapy to reduce sensitivity to peanut proteins.

The published a new report that found the therapy to be 81 percent effective in preschool-aged children.

Only a handful of oral immunotherapy programs exist in Texas.

Medical City Dallas has been running its current program for eight years with high success, according to doctors.

The Larson Family of Houston has made 51 visits for their 12-year-old son Brendan's immunotherapy for food allergies, including peanuts.

"You always hear the stories of kids having terrible reactions and it's usually kids who are teenagers or early adults, so I really wanted him protected before he got to that age," said mom Katie Larson.

Dr. Stacy Silvers, of Allergy Partners of North Texas, started Brendan on small doses of peanut protein, in the form of peanut flour mixed with juice.

Over time, the dose of peanut increases.

"Over the course of weeks or months, we build them up to where they're eating 12 peanuts daily," said Silvers.

Silvers said 80 percent of the children who go through the months-long program build enough tolerance for peanuts that they no longer have allergic reactions to them.

The success echoes the results of the new published research.

"We have been starting kids age five and older in the program, but with this recent study that came out, in the very near future, we plan to start treating the younger kids," Silvers said.

Brendan has graduated from the program and is now in the maintenance phase, which includes daily consumption of Peanut M&M's, which helps him keep his tolerance to peanuts.

In a few weeks, Brendan will attend a birthday party, where he will eat birthday cake for the first time in his life.

"He's never eaten the cake at a birthday party. He's actually invited to a birthday party in a few weeks and it'll be the first time that he'll get to eat the cake at the party. Obviously, I'm tearing up thinking about that," said Katie.

"I'll be able to eat all these new foods," said Brendan. "It's going to be a whole new world."

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Moms Find Worms in Baby Formula]]> Wed, 12 Oct 2016 09:04:38 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/NC_maggotformula1011_1500x845.jpg A first-time mom says she found worms in a bottle of Similac baby formula that she fed her son. "Two ounces down I noticed the worms," said Taylor Seyler from Missouri. "Took it from his mouth, went and put a napkin over the faucet and we poured it down the drain and we saw the maggots on it." Her story isn't a unique one; another mother says she had a similar experience with Nutramigen formula. Manufacturers say contamination likely occurred after the packaging was opened. ]]> <![CDATA[Can Dry Shampoo Lead To Hair Loss?]]> Tue, 11 Oct 2016 19:06:06 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Dry+shampoo.jpg

Dry shampoo has become a staple on most women's vanities, but some online claims accuse the popular products of causing hair loss.

Most agree, dry shampoo can cut down a morning routine in half and help a hairstyle last days.

"Not only would I be using shampoo and conditioner, I'd be blow drying and flat ironing every day. That just makes my hair that much drier and more damaged," said Bedford resident Kristy Zastrow.

But can it cause your hair to fall out?

Dr. Katherine Ayoade, a dermatologist who researches Alopecia at UT Southwestern, says no.

She says if you're experiencing hair loss, get to a doctor, because it could be a symptom of an underlying condition.

Low vitamin D, thyroid problems, an iron deficiency or even stress could be the culprit.

"During times of illness, during times of stress, during times of hormonal changes, I'm talking about thyroid hormones in particular, anytime your body is under physical or medical stress, it seems to affect the hair cycle," said Ayoade.

She warns that if you overuse dry shampoo and let it continue to build on your hair follicles by going days without a good lather and rinse, it's possible, but unlikely, you can experience some hair loss.

"That build up can potentially can cause inflammation on the follicles of the scalp and if untreated, can potentially lead to hair loss," Ayoade said, describing the only scenario she believes dry shampoo can lead to hair loss.

She says, like with anything else, use in moderation.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[4 Qualities Explain Why Big Cities Are Healthier: Survey]]> Tue, 11 Oct 2016 14:48:27 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/StretchMcDonalds.jpg

The American cities with the healthiest, happiest residents are Boston, San Francisco, Chicago, New York and Washington, D.C., according to a new survey that scored communities on important health measures, NBC News reported.

While they may not shriek "healthy living," they all have lots of sidewalks, parks and good public transportation, a report from Gallup and Healthways found. The four key components the group identified are walkability, easy biking, parks and public transit.

"Residents in these top five communities have, on average, significantly lower rates of smoking, obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and depression compared with those in the five lowest-ranked active living communities," the groups said in a statement, adding to a large body of research that's found that access to green spaces, lowered stress and other factors translate into lower rates of disease and longer lives.

Photo Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto]]>
<![CDATA[College Students Say 'Drunkorexia' Is More Than Buzzword]]> Tue, 11 Oct 2016 11:36:41 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-113218959beer.jpg

Despite attempts to curb students’ consumption of alcohol, binge-drinking is becoming the norm on college campuses, NBC News reported.

A group of young people spoke about the trend, called “drunkorexia," for "Today" show's Campus Undercovered series. According to the students interviewed, the habit altered their way of life, even leading to extended hospitalization, for one student.

A study from the University of Houston found that of 1,200 students surveyed, up to 80 percent altered their diet by restricting calories, overexercising, purging or using laxatives while also binge drinking.

Photo Credit: Getty Images/Aurora Creative]]>
<![CDATA[The DMN's Dr. Seema Yasmin: Legionnaire's Disease]]> Tue, 11 Oct 2016 11:57:56 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/seema-legionnaires.jpg The Dallas Morning News' medical expert Dr. Seema Yasmin joins NBC 5 live via satellite to talk about Legionnaire's Disease after the bacteria that causes it was found in an American Airlines maintenance hanger.

Photo Credit: NBC 5 News]]>
<![CDATA[Finding the Right Running Shoes]]> Tue, 11 Oct 2016 11:22:19 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/running-shoes-101116.jpg

Your feet absorb four times your weight when running, so it's important to have the right footwear to prevent injury.

Luke's Locker footwear specialist Christina Rodriguez says brand, color and comfort are not the only things to consider when selecting running shoes.

"It's really important to get the right fit on shoes, the right sock, in order to make it as enjoyable an experience as possible," she said.  "You can't really do much as far as changing somebody's running gait, but you can do things to help improve it."

For people who need arch support, she says optimal running shoes have a wider sole.

"If you look in the midfoot area, you'll see it's a wider fit here so it supports the part of the foot that collapses in," Rodriguez said.

She also points out there is a dense section right under the arch, it's sometimes colored/patterned differently and feels hard. You'll want to shop for that if your ankles roll inward.

"It's called a denser stability posting so anytime anyone is running, if they roll in, it's going to push them more into a neutral position," Rodriguez said.

As for money, good shoes are an investment.

At Luke's Locker, running shoes run close to $100, but they say that should last you hundreds of miles.

"I would say anywhere between 250 and 400 miles," said Rodriguez.

However, the mileage range depends on the amound of cushion and frequency of a person's workout.

An average of 350 miles is a good rule of thumb. So if you run 3 miles twice a week, that's new shoes about every year.

Photo Credit: NBC News]]>
<![CDATA[Unlocking Secrets of West Nile Virus]]> Tue, 11 Oct 2016 10:56:33 -0500 http://media.nbcdfw.com/images/213*120/Mosquito-GettyImages-563546355.jpg

Scientists at University of Texas Southwestern are trying to unlock the secrets of the West Nile virus.

The mosquito-borne illness sickens hundreds of people every year and can be deadly, yet some people who get the virus don't show any symptoms. Lisa Cheeks of Dallas was one of the unlucky ones who contracted the severe form of the virus in 2012.

"I knew I was very sick, but the thought of getting out of bed was overwhelming," she said. "I literally thought i was going to die."

The 35-year-old mother of three said she had never been seriously ill in her life and, to this day, has no idea why she was sickened to the point where she wasn't able to get out of bed or complete sentences.

"People are walking around with it every day and they show no symptoms, so I still wonder why I got it and got such a severe form," she said.

The answer might be hidden in the DNA of the West Nile virus.

Scientists at UT Southwestern are using genome sequencing to break the DNA down to its most simple form and see how the virus has mutated over the years.

"We are trying to characterize exactly how these changes in the sequences of the viral genome affect how infectious it is, how does that really affect a human cell," says Chukwuemika Aroh, a UT Southwestern research student.

So far, they've discovered the changes inside the West Nile virus strain that caused Cheeks and 1,800 other Texans to become seriously ill in 2012. They will use that information to see if there is a way to predict future mutations and if there's something in human DNA that plays a role in how sick a person gets.

"As in West Nile virus, most of us can fight this off, but it has the ability to take advantage of some versions of the immune system that just a subset of people have, by chance, and they're more at risk to have the disease," says Dr. Ward Wakeland, Chairman of Immunology at UT Southwestern.

Their research will help drugmakers pinpoint a target when developing possible vaccines or medicines and could shed light on other similar viruses, like Dengue Fever and the Zika virus. 

 "It would make me so happy to see no one else have to go through this," said Cheeks, who still feels the effects from the illness, such as short-term memory loss and occasional numbness in her left arm.

"It was a true lesson in waking up and saying 'I might not be able to take care of my kids,'" she said. "That was panic mode for me. That was scary."

The Centers for Disease Control says between 70 to 80 percent of people who become infected with West Nile Virus do not develop any symptoms.

Currently, there are no vaccines or drugs for human infection of the West Nile virus.

Photo Credit: LA Times via Getty Images]]>