seizure

Myoclonus: An Innocent Twitch—or a Serious Illness?

What is myoclonus? According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, myoclonus “refers to sudden, involuntary jerking of a muscle or group of muscles.” It is a symptom, not a disease, affecting 8.6 people per 100,000 in its more serious presentations. A myoclonic twitch or a myoclonic jerk—when … Read More

Headache Location Determines Its Name

Headache location can be on one side or both sides. They may be intermittent, episodic, or constant. Some are acute—they come and go rapidly. Others persists for days or weeks. When the exact headache location cannot be identified, it is called a generalized headache. Where Is a Cluster Headache Location? Cluster … Read More

Alcohol Abuse: When Drinking Becomes a Problem

Full-blown alcohol addiction, commonly known as alcoholism, doesn’t happen all at once. Typically, alcohol abuse—a pattern of harmful drinking—begins the process. Abuse then progresses to dependency and addiction. The danger signs are well understood: They can provide a chance at early intervention, although problem drinkers face many challenges in overcoming … Read More

Flu Season: How Long It Lasts—and How to Survive It

You likely read about the historic and unsettling flu season of 2017-18: In America, some 900,000 people were hospitalized and 80,000 died from the flu and its complications. The 2017-18 flu season was the worst we’ve seen since 2011, when there were 56,000 deaths. By comparison, flu-related deaths during a … Read More

Phantom Smells: What Are They and What Do They Mean?

Ever smelled smoke, burnt toast, or sewage when there was no such scent around? You could be one of millions who experience phantom smells, or phantosmia, as it’s known in the medical community (more on that in the sidebar "What is Phantosmia?"). According to a study published in JAMA Otolaryngology-Head … Read More

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