UCSF researcher, a rising star in study of ALS, now ravaged by disease

By Laurie McGinley | Washington Post SAN FRANCISCO — Rahul Desikan sits at his dining room table, a large computer screen before him, and works on his latest scientific paper. He types a single letter, then another, then another. For a man in a hurry, desperately trying to rid the world of terrible diseases, it’s an excruciatingly slow process. Using a special mouse strapped to his forehead that detects his smallest movement, Desikan moves a cursor around an on-screen keyboard. When he finds the letter he wants, he clicks a button with his right thumb, and it appears in a white space to the side. Repeating the process over and… Read More

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Letter: Trump’s efforts to undermine the Affordable Care Act will cost California’s small businesses

Efforts to undermine ACA will impact small firms Re: “Trump administration won’t defend the ACA” (Mercurynews.com, June 7): The Trump administration’s efforts to destabilize the Affordable Care Act will result in many of California’s small businesses paying more for health insurance next year. Get editorials, opinion columns, letters to the editor and more in your inbox weekday mornings. Sign up for the Opinion newsletter. The Congressional Budget Office said premiums for health care plans purchased through the ACA exchanges will rise by an average of 10 percent in 2019, thanks to the administration’s efforts to undermine the ACA as much as possible by proposing rules to expand association health plans… Read More

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A 5-year-old mysteriously woke up paralyzed. Her mom found the cause — on her scalp

By Cleve R. Wootson Jr. | Washington Post As soon as Kailyn Griffin’s feet hit the floor June 6, she collapsed in a heap. The 5-year-old kept trying to stand but fell every time. She was also struggling to speak, her mother Jessica Griffin noticed. Her daughter had been fine when the family went out to a T-ball game the night before, Midway, Florida, ABC-affiliate WTXL reported. Maybe Kailyn was having a hard time waking up the morning of June 6, or perhaps her legs were asleep. Then Griffin saw the tick. She had gathered Kailyn’s hair to put it in a ponytail when she spotted the insect, embedded in… Read More

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Opinion: A father’s greatest gift — talking to his son about mental illness

Father’s Day is the time to remember and celebrate our dads. ]My own father was a philosopher who studied with Bertrand Russell and Albert Einstein. He was my go-to person as I grew up in the Midwest, during a seemingly idyllic university life. Yet he disappeared, without warning, for 3, 6, or 12 months at a time. No one ever discussed it, when he was present or when he was gone. I had no idea that he was locked up in barbaric mental hospitals, for what were thought to be repeated bouts of chronic schizophrenia. Get editorials, opinion columns, letters to the editor and more in your inbox weekday mornings.… Read More

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Judge: Californians can once again use aid-in-dying drugs

A California Court of Appeals on Friday temporarily reinstated California’s right-to-die law, as it considers the constitutionality of its route to passage. That means the two-year-old End of Life Options Act can stand — once again available for dying patients — pending a future ruling by the court. “I am thrilled and relieved,” said Sen. Bill Monning, D-Carmel, who co-sponsored the legislation that led to the Act. “This decision will offer reassurance and certainty, for now, to any terminally ill patient who feared that their end of life options had been curtailed.” A flurry of rulings in May created confusion among patients, their families and doctors regarding the status of… Read More

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‘Are you dead sir?’ doctor asks patient in video that led to her removal from Los Gatos hospital

A video of a doctor speaking harshly to an emergency room patient and asking if he’s dead has led to her removal from the work schedule at El Camino Hospital Los Gatos, a hospital spokeswoman said. The video shows the doctor, Beth Keegstra, mocking 20-year-old Samuel Bardwell, a newly-enrolled student at West Valley College in Saratoga who was brought to the hospital’s emergency room after becoming ill during a basketball practice. Keegstra tells Bardwell, “I’m sorry sir, you were the least sick of all the people who are here who are dying. There, so you picked your head up. Now don’t try to tell me you can’t move. C’mon, sit… Read More

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