Category Archives: Medical

Chicago Nurse Hopes 3D Printed Kidneys Will Save Her

Darvece Monson

*I know what you’re thinking and I agree: She doesn’t even look sick. 

But she is.

Darvece Monson admits she has tried everything to secure a new kidney with no luck. And with the traditional options looking so bleak, she is willing to look at alternatives.

For the past year, three days a week, six-hours per day, Monson has been on hemodialysis; a treatment endured by 35 percent of Black Americans in the U. S. But the mother of an 8-year-old says that it was actually the treatments that made her hopeful about potentially getting a 3D printed kidney, which would reduce the waiting time on lists that currently hold approximately 25,000 out of 70,000 people (of all races) to weeks rather than years. This, in addition to the possibility that her body may actually reject the organ, which is a major concern in organ transplants.

“It is a blessing that I am in Chicago, African-American and female; that also is my curse,” Monson chuckles. Continue reading

First Human Head Transplant Volunteer Steps Up! (Watch)

surgeons-500px

*Excuse me one sec, while I attempt to wrap my own securely attached head to this lastest rather scientific occurrence. A neuroscientist in Italy had promised one day he would perform the first head transplant surgery. Everyone within earshot most likely replied “Ha!” and went about their business. The neuroscientist most likely just shrugged off the haters and kept it moving. No doubt secretly looking for volunteers.

Well the joke is on the haters now, because a volunteer has sho’ nuff stepped up.

I can just imagine Dr. Sergio Canavero sticking his tongue out singing, “Nah-nah-nah-nah-nah!”

He had promised that his procedure would take place in December 2017, and it looks like everything is on schedule. His volunteer is 30-year-old Valery Spiridonov, a Russian man who hopes that the historic operation will help him to live a normal life. Continue reading

TV Station Suspends Female Anchors, Orders Them To Lose Weight

_90818040_egypt2

*They say the camera adds 10 pounds, and that everyone looks a little…healthier on TV.  Egypt’s state broadcaster thinks it’s more than the camera for eight of its female anchors, and has suspended them and ordered them to lose weight!  

The Egyptian Radio and Television Union (ERTU) has given the women just one month to take off the pounds before allowing them to appear again on air with what they say will be “appropriate appearance.”

Interestingly, the ERTU has a female director, Safaa Hegazy, who used a be TV anchor!  

_90818481_safaahegazy

Lest you ask, yes, Hegazy is what many in the US would call a “skinny beeeatch.”   I think she looks like Sally Field, but anyway… Continue reading

Model With Vitiligo Redefining “Beauty”

Winnie-Harlow-Composite

*Just when you think you might be able to define the term “beauty,” I invite you to take a look at model Chantelle Winnie’s stunning cover shot!

Winnie was born Chantelle Brown-Young in 1994 in Toronto, to parents of Jamaican heritage.  At the age of four, she contracted vitiligo, a chronic autoimmune disorder that causes a loss of pigment on the skin in patches around the body, particularly the face and hands.

While the condition is not contagious, it affects two percent of the population and has no known cure.  Vitiligo affects all ethnicities, but is more visible among people of African and Hispanic heritage.

By the time she entered school, Winnie has being teased — and even beat up — by her classmates.  Some likened her to a cow and “mooed” at her, while others simply avoided her in the mistaken fear that they might  “catch” the condition.

“I remember sitting by my window, wishing upon the stars that my skin condition would go away,” she remembered.  “I wondered, ‘Why me?'” Continue reading

4-Year-Old Amputee’s Leg Stolen from Beach, But Then…

leg28n-1-web

*My faith in humanity was both challenged and restored in the space of a couple of days, with this story.

4-year-old Liam Brenes battles a genetic condition called Facto Syndrome.  As a result of it, he had to have one of his legs amputated below the knee when he was just 1 year old.

One of my best friends growing up had a prosthetic leg, so this story really touched me.

Liam manages today with his second prosthetic leg, the first of which he outgrew.  Last weekend, he and his family took his first-ever trip to the beach.  Liam’s father, Frank, said Liam’s afraid of the water, and that it had been the first time they’d been to the ocean.

The family brought Liam’s older, shorter prosthetic leg with them, so he could use it in the water without fear of damaging the new one.    After arriving at the beach, eager Liam waded into the ocean.

What happened next is almost unfathomable to me.

Continue reading

Wow! That’s a Lot of Babies: Twins Times Three! (Watch)

Danesha Couch smiles during interview
Danesha Couch smiles during interview

*I suppose one way to wrap your brain around the realization that you have produced three sets of twins in a little over two years and your future for the next 18 will be centered around taking care of ‘dem babies is being grateful that you can produce children at all.

After all, as Danesha Couch, a 20-year-old mother of five, knows so well, there are many women who cannot. She smiles as she talks to the media, and shares how people respond when she tells them about her large family.

“People just consider me a freak of nature when I tell them,” Couch said.

Unless you actually come from a family with a history of multiple births, its safe to assume that most women who plan for children never think of having more than one baby at a time. But when Couch had her first set of twins, and then had a repeat with the second, the question that probably comes to the mind of many is, why even take the risk a third time?

According to one report, the chances of having THREE sets of twins is something like 1 in 88,000.

But…I don’t think Danesha ever got this memo. Continue reading

What…Mortality Rate for Black Babies Outweighs All Others?

vfx5tjww6zdwayu4fpcb

*I recall one of my greatest fears during pregnancy was something happening to my baby. While I was a generally happy pregnant woman, all the talk about children dying in their sleep — Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) — or children born with low birth weight not making it to their first year scared the crap out of me. This was especially harsh since I was a low birth-weight child, born to an alcoholic mother.

I remember once I gave birth, for months thereafter, waking up every 30-minutes to turn my baby from her back to her stomach and vice-versa; or placing my finger under her little nose to make sure she was still breathing.

It was maddening, and not unlike many new mothers, I got very little sleep for the first 6-months of her life!

So when I read a report in the Sacramento Bee that claims children in impoverished areas of the county are dying — and Black children more than any other race or ethnicity even more so, it was very disconcerting. Especially in this day and age when so many medical strides have been made.

Why is this STILL happening?

First, a bit of background.

The Sacramento Bee reports that between 2010 and 2015, nearly one quarter of the 873 children 18 and under who died in Sacramento County were Black. And at that time Black children only made up 11 percent of the population represented in that age category. Continue reading

When 911 Doesn’t Take Your Call Seriously…And Then You Die

911 dispatch

*A Virginia native is dead today because 911 thought his call was a “butt dial.” Robert Paulus died hours later from heart disease, after he made the call and attempted to let the emergency service know that he was having what may have been a heart attack.

The 18-second call to Fredericksburg City Dispatch revealed that when the dispatcher heard nothing from the caller, after three attempts to make contact with him only presented an “unidentifiable sound,” the call was labeled a pocket call, which means no call back is required.

Hours later, Robert Paulus was found dead, presumably by his son. Continue reading