Disease and Illnesses

Anthony Fauci (left), director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and chief medical advisor to the President, listens as President Joe Biden (right) delivers remarks on the Omicron Covid-19 variant. Fauci has warned that Omicron could reach most of the population.

Covid-19

Seven Key Questions About Omicron Answered

As the variant spreads and more studies have been done, experts share what they know

When putting on or taking off a mask, handle it by the edges or straps to avoid contamination.

Can You Reuse a KN95 or N95 Mask? Experts Say Yes, but Follow These Steps

Regularly check for stretched-out straps, staining and soiling, which can compromise masks' ability to filter viruses like Covid-19

The gene-edited pig heart recipient, who was ineligible for a human heart transplant, is doing well three days after the surgery. 

In a First, Man Receives a Heart From a Gene-Edited Pig

The swine-to-person cardiac transplant offers hope for thousands in need of organs

Preliminary evidence suggests that rapid tests like Abbott BinaxNOW and Quidel QuickVue struggle to detect the omicron variant during an individual’s first few days of infection. 

Should You Add a Throat Swab to Your At-Home Covid-19 Test?

Mounting evidence suggests the extra step might catch Omicron infections earlier than a nasal swab alone, but the FDA warns against it

More than a quarter of American ICU beds are currently occupied by Covid-19 patients.

U.S. Sets Record With Over 1 Million New Daily Covid-19 Cases

Experts credit the recent surge to the spreading omicron variant and a lag in case reporting over the holidays

The CDC said Thursday that “receiving any vaccine is better than being unvaccinated.”

The CDC Now Recommends Pfizer and Moderna Covid-19 Vaccines Over J&J

The decision comes after more evidence linking the Johnson & Johnson shot to a rare blood clotting syndrome

The Food and Drug Administration could authorize the experimental pill within days.

Pfizer Says Covid-19 Pill Is Effective and Likely Works Against Omicron

The drug helps those already infected, but experts say vaccination is the best way to prevent contracting and spreading the virus

A booster shot is administered in Stony Brook, New York in November. Such a shot can help spur a person’s immune system to ramp up defenses against Covid-19.

Six Questions About Waning Immunity to Covid-19 Answered

Experts weigh in on when a reduced immune response occurs and how boosters can help restore defenses

To reduce the risk of contracting and spreading Omicron, experts offer the same proven advice as they do against all Covid-19 variants: social distancing, masking, and getting vaccinated and boosted.

What Experts Do and Don't Know About the Omicron Covid-19 Variant

Scientists have dubbed Omicron a “variant of concern,” but warn against panic

The letter will be sold alongside a portrait of the Russian empress on December 1.

Catherine the Great Letter Extolling the Virtues of Vaccination Is Up for Auction

The Russian empress, who was inoculated against smallpox in 1768, was an early proponent of the practice

The Roman elite viewed public toilets as an instrument that flushed the filth of the plebes out of their noble sight.

How the Ancient Romans Went to the Bathroom

A new book by journalist Lina Zeldovich traces the management of human waste—and underscores poop's potential as a valuable resource

If regulators approve the request, roughly 181 million fully vaccinated Americans will be able to get an additional jab.

Pfizer Asks FDA to Expand Booster Eligibility to All Adults

Experts are optimistic the request will be granted before the winter holiday season

Though experts emphasize that vaccines are the primary defense against Covid-19, antiviral medicines could be another tool that doctors can use reduce the severity of infections, especially for high-risk Americans.

Pfizer Says Covid-19 Pill Cuts Hospitalization and Death Risk by Nearly 90 Percent

Though vaccines are still the best line of defense against the virus, the antiviral drug could help high-risk Americans once symptoms appear

Iron lungs were a necessity during the peak of the polio plague in the 20th century. A Texas man (not pictured) continues to use one today after he became paralyzed from the disease nearly 70 years ago.

Texas Man Lives 70 Years in an Iron Lung: 'I Never Gave Up'

Paralyzed by polio in 1952, Paul Alexander has led a full life despite being confined to a large steel ventilator

“Martineau was extremely unusual in the amount of control she had over her own medical care,” says Rachel Ablow, author of the 2017 book Victorian Pain.

The Victorian Woman Writer Who Refused to Let Doctors Define Her

Harriet Martineau took control of her medical care, defying the male-dominated establishment’s attempts to dismiss her as hysterical and fragile

Results from clinical trials show Pfizer’s vaccine was around 91 percent effective in preventing symptomatic Covid-19 infections in kids ages 5 to 11.

CDC Recommends Pfizer's Covid-19 Vaccine for Children Ages 5 to 11

About 28 million kids are immediately eligible for the safe and effective lower-dose vaccine

The recent decision expands vaccine eligibility to roughly 28 million American children.

FDA Authorizes Pfizer's Covid-19 Vaccine for Kids 5 to 11

The lower-dose vaccine could be administered as soon as this Wednesday, pending CDC approval

The CDC added mental health disorders to the list of primarily physical conditions that increase the risk of Covid-19 hospitalization or death. 

The CDC Adds Mental Health Conditions to High-Risk Covid-19 List

The addition of mood disorders expands the list of Americans eligible for booster shots by millions

The skin patch vaccine is administered by a pocket-sized device with 5,000 needle-like projections.

Covid-19

Could Skin Patches Be the Future of Covid Vaccines?

The device might survive longer storage times and pose a better option for people afraid of needles

Those currently eligible for a booster shot include older and high-risk recipients of the Pfizer and Moderna jabs, and those who received the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Mixing and Matching Covid-19 Vaccines Could Impact Immunity

Because public health officials aren’t recommending one booster shot over another, individuals are left to make a choice based on personal factors

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