SAVI, the new autoinflammatory kid on the block

Doctors are discovering new autoinflammatory diseases almost every month.  The latest autoinflammatory disease is called STING-associated vasculopathy with onset in infancy, or SAVI.  As the name implies, the disease becomes noticeable shortly after birth: infants develop a rash, nodules, fever, lung abnormalities, and ulcers or gangrene in their fingertips.  Blood testing shows elevation in markers of inflammation, as are normally seen in autoinflammatory diseases. Continue reading SAVI, the new autoinflammatory kid on the block

To misdiagnose is human

Patient details have been changed to protect patient privacy.

A previously-healthy man sees his primary care physician and complains of fatigue.  Laboratory studies show abnormalities which concern his physician for the presence of cancer.  Imaging reveals enlarged lymph nodes, and he is admitted to the hospital to determine his type of cancer and begin treatment.  Several biopsies later, no malignancy is found, although his medical team remains suspicious. Continue reading To misdiagnose is human

Why we go bald: an evolutionary hypothesis

As a Senior in college, I took a class on evolutionary medicine with Professor Paul Ewald.  For my final project, I decided to explore male pattern baldness from an evolutionary perspective.  This topic, to my knowledge, had never been previously addressed.  I’ve included my entire (lengthy) paper below. Continue reading Why we go bald: an evolutionary hypothesis

How to floss (a hacker’s guide to completing unpleasant tasks)

There are two kinds of people in the world: those who floss their teeth every day, and those who wish they did.  For most of my life, I was a member of the latter group.  I never flossed–it took too long, was unpleasant, and I didn’t feel I received any benefits from the process.  I ignored my dentist’s  recommendations to floss, and the free dental floss I received after each visit settled, unopened, at the back of my bathroom drawer.  My wife–an obsessive flosser–eventually tired of reminding me to floss every night. Continue reading How to floss (a hacker’s guide to completing unpleasant tasks)

Uncovering the mysteries of autoinflammatory diseases and other rheumatic illnesses.

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