Welcome to Monday Morning Round-Up, featuring what’s new in health and medicine from around the web!
Every year, the Fourth of July brings patriotic displays of color, smoke, and sound — and a slew of emergency room visits from burns and blast wounds. Federal researchers track data on those injuries year-round using the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System, a national probability sample of about 100 hospitals in the U.S. and its territories. Fireworks injuries don’t only happen in July, but they are, unsurprisingly, far more common in that month versus the rest of the year.
Insect Venom Shortage Stings Allergy Sufferers This Summer via Kaiser Health News
As summer begins, signaling peak time for insect stings, allergists across the U.S. are warning of a shortage of a little-known but crucial product — honeybee, hornet and wasp venom extracts used in shots that prevent life-threatening reactions. Supplies of the extracts — which are made from venom gathered by hand from millions of individual insects — have been scarce since October. That’s when one of two manufacturers in the U.S. shut down production after contamination problems. Doctors say they hope the situation will be resolved, but that’s not likely before next year. For now, they’re rationing doses for patients who need them most.
15 health and wellness use cases for virtual reality via Mobi Health News
Virtual reality has moved from science fiction to marketable consumer product astonishingly quickly, partly because the incorporation of the smartphone into the technology makes it accessible, if not ubiquitous. It’s looking more and more like those who bet that virtual reality is here to stay, and not a flash-in-the-pan trend, made the smart bet. But what about in healthcare? Could a technology primarily associated with gaming turn out to be a serious therapeutic tool? Well, a growing number of doctors, researchers, and entrepreneurs think it can. In May, Kalorama reported that the virtual and augmented reality market in healthcare grew from $525 million in 2012 to an estimated $976 million in 2017.
You probably do it every day: pop in your earbuds during your commute or flip on tunes in the car. But what is actually happening in your head to let you hear — and belt out — the likes of Bruno Mars or the Beatles? Dr. Charles Limb knows. A surgeon and a musician, Limb has put jazz musicians and freestyle rappers into fMRI machines to study how musical creativity comes about. In this video, Limb shows how sound gets in our heads and brains.
Researchers Are Working On A Blood Test To Help Find Brain Cancer via The Huffington Post
Doctors currently rely on MRI scans and other imaging techniques to diagnose brain tumors ― tests that aren’t typically part of a regular check up with your general practitioner. A combination of headaches, memory loss, personality changes, blurred vision or slurred speech typically lead doctors to suspect, test for and eventually diagnose brain cancer, but by then it is often too late. By the time cancerous tumors cause those symptoms, they tend to be too aggressive to treat with drug therapies ― and treatments like surgery, radiation and chemotherapy are less effective than they would be in earlier stage cancers.