We’ve moved! Find out how to get our latest stories

Two new sites offer great new features

For several years, we’ve offered health news, feature stories and useful information from across the University of Michigan Health System on the blog site you’re reading now, and via email from the site.

But with the arrival of Spring 2016, we’ve launched even better options for connecting with us, getting the latest from our experts, and commenting on and sharing our stories.

This will be the last post to UofMHealthBlogs.org . It’s also the last post to the different topic-specific blogs hosted here on cancer, cardiovascular, children’s health, women’s health, neuro health and digestive health. We’ll keep this site online as an archive of great content.

Now, we invite you to join us at one or both of these great new sites:

Michigan Health

At www.michiganhealthblog.org, we’re serving up regular doses of health news and wellness tips — with expert information you can trust from top physicians, nurses, registered dietitians and others at our hospitals and clinics. If you’re managing a health condition, caring for loved ones or simply seeking to live well, you can find information and support here.

On the new site, you can also find specific pages on these topics: Bones, Muscles & JointsBrain HealthCancer CareChildren’s HealthDigestive HealthHeart HealthWomen’s Health

Michigan Health Lab

At www.michiganhealthlab.org, we’ve created a one-stop destination for stories about how physicians, scientists, students and healthcare professionals are shaping and sharing the future of health through research, technology development, innovative education and engagement with the world of public policy.

This site is aimed at an audience that wants to be up-to-date on the latest advances in science and clinical care. If you’re passionate about health innovation, biomedical science, health policy and the training of tomorrow’s health and science professionals, we welcome you into our “lab.”


Michigan Health Lab:

Balance Awareness Week: ‘Dizziness is not normal’



Some loss of balance as you age is to be expected, but balance issues don’t have to be a fact of life, say the vestibular therapists at the U-M Vestibular Testing Center, part of the Vertigo & Balance Disorders program in the Department of Otolaryngology- Head and Neck Surgery.

Wendy Carender

Wendy Carender, PT, NCS, of the U-M Vertigo & Balance Disorders program.

Sept. 12 through 18 is Balance Awareness Week, and vestibular certified physical therapists Wendy Carender, PT, NCS, and Melissa Grzesiak, PT, DPT recommend people see their doctor if balance or vertigo is getting in the way of their regular life. Many physicians will then refer patients to the physical therapists and audiologists at the Vestibular Testing Center for evaluation and treatment.

“I personally used to go in and see Wendy very often, so much that I suggested they set up an office for me there. I was a regular pest,” said Harold Johnson, 89, who dealt with a variety of balance and vertigo issues as he aged, in addition to a history of Meniere’s disease and a cochlear implant.

Carender educated Johnson in specific exercises to reduce his dizziness and improve his balance and sent him home with a customized home exercise program.  He finds his balance has improved so much that he rarely requires a visit anymore.

“The majority of our patients with dizziness and balance disorders benefit from an individualized home exercise program,” Carender said. “We’re teaching them to move through the dizziness in order to desensitize and decrease symptoms while promoting return to functional activity.”

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National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day this Saturday, April 30

Get rid of those unwanted medications cluttering your cabinet!

Several containers of over the counter and prescription medications on the shelves of a 1960's medicine cabinet.

Many years ago, a new father was inspired by the birth of his first child to improve his health. He used a prescription medication to stop smoking and when he had some medication left over, he placed it in a drawer. When his child grew to be an inquisitive toddler, the child found the medication and before the parents were aware had ingested enough of these pills to be at risk for seizures and other life-threatening complications.

Fortunately, this story ended well.  Managed quickly in the hospital, the child suffered no complications and after observation was sent home.

Tragically, this is not an isolated incident.

Prescription drugs are an important part of modern healthcare.  When taken as prescribed, pharmaceuticals have great potential to help with a wide variety of ailments and conditions.  When misuse occurs, however, great problems can also result. Continue reading

Signs of overeating can be seen at an early age

mottchildren - sweet cookie imageIt’s become a milestone moment so many parents look forward to: their baby’s first bite of birthday cake when he turns one.

For some children, it’s love at first taste, leading to photos of messy, frosting-covered faces.  Others need extra prodding to eat the sugar-laden treat. Parents may want to take note of which camp their child falls into – it could already be a clue to their risk of unhealthy weight gain in the future.

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UMHS teams up with students to teach hands-only CPR

Do you know what to do if a friend or family member suddenly went into cardiac arrest?

Start hands-only CPR!

Hands-only CPR is CPR without any mouth-to-mouth contact. If you witness someone suddenly collapse, it’s important to call 9-1-1 and then begin pushing hard and fast in the center of the chest of the collapsed person.

Thanks to the U-M Club Sports Teams, more than 350 U-M students were trained in hands-only CPR over the course of two days last week. Continue reading

The benefits of massage therapy

U-M patient experiences "life-altering" results

Massage therapy

Diane Holland, M.D., is a strong believer in the Massage Therapy Program offered to University of Michigan Health System patients, outpatients, families, staff and guests. In fact, you could say she’s one of the program’s biggest fans.The benefits Holland says she gets from her weekly massage session go well beyond the traditional muscle relaxation that many expect. The radiologist, a U-M Medical School alumna and former cancer patient, believes her weekly massage appointments with Massage Therapy Program Director Beth Miazga have been life altering. Continue reading