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Former Marine And Self-Described ‘Proud Mexican American’ Finally Finds His Way To Career Of His Dreams

Pharmacy is not Antonio Silva’s first career, but he is certain it will be his last. In the past, the 34-year-old Riverside, California, resident has served in the US Marine Corps and owned and operated his own small business.  However, he could never forget what he was really passionate about―science, medicine and, most importantly, helping sick people feel better. 

“My uncle is diabetic,” explains Silva, who describes himself as a “proud Mexican American.” “When I was younger, I would translate for him, explain what the doctors and nurses were saying, and help him get the tools and resources that he needed to manage his diabetes.”

But, despite his growing interest in health care, Silva chose to enlist in the US Marine Corps and then follow in his father’s footsteps as a small business owner in the transportation industry.

Ablation Increases Survival For Adults With Atrial Fibrillation

Adults who undergo a minimally invasive technique to treat atrial fibrillation are significantly less likely to die from a heart attack or heart failure, according to a long-term study by the University of Michigan Frankel Cardiovascular Center.

mhs-logoMore than 4 million people have atrial fibrillation, an age-related heart rhythm disorder that can cause a fluttering sensation in the chest and impair the heart’s ability to pump blood.

The study published in Heart Rhythm shows cardiovascular mortality dropped by 60% among adults who had their normal heart rhythm restored through catheter ablation.

HIV Care Corps

The 31-year-old Moore Clinic operated by the Johns Hopkins AIDS Service at the School of Medicine is a historic operation — the second-oldest AIDS clinic in the country. But when Jason Farley, PhD, MPH, CRNP, looks nowadays at the makeup of Moore’s caregiving staff, he worries that he’s seeing too much history.

Source: Oliver Weiss

Source: Oliver Weiss

“There are 12 non-physician providers, and I am one of the two youngest. And I’ve been there for 11 years now,” notes Farley, an HIV/AIDS nurse practitioner at the clinic since 2003.

The situation is not isolated to specialty clinics like Moore. A 2014 survey sponsored by the nonprofit Health HIV found that half of primary care physicians in the US do not provide HIV care because they don’t feel qualified to do so. Of those who do offer care, most are physicians, and 55% are over age 50. “We really need to get new young people in,” says Farley, assistant professor at the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing.

Making Cancer Glow To Improve Surgical Outcomes

The best way to cure most cases of cancer is to surgically remove the tumor. The Achilles heel of this approach, however, is that the surgeon may fail to extract the entire tumor, leading to a local recurrence.

With a new technique, researchers at the University of Pennsylvania have established a new strategy to help surgeons see the entire tumor in the patient, increasing the likelihood of a positive outcome. This approach relies on an injectable dye that accumulates in cancerous tissues much more so than normal tissues. When the surgeon shines an infrared light on the cancer, it glows, allowing the surgeon to remove the entire malignancy.

“Surgeons have had two things that tell where a cancer is during surgery: their eyes and their hands,” said David Holt, first author on the study and professor of surgery in Penn’s School of Veterinary Medicine. “This technique is offering surgeons another tool, to light tumors up during surgery.”

Vision-Correcting Display Makes Reading Glasses So Yesterday

What if computer screens had glasses instead of the people staring at the monitors? That concept is not too far afield from technology being developed by UC Berkeley computer and vision scientists.

The researchers are developing computer algorithms to compensate for an individual’s visual impairment, and creating vision-correcting displays that enable users to see text and images clearly without wearing eyeglasses or contact lenses. The technology could potentially help hundreds of millions of people who currently need corrective lenses to use their smartphones, tablets and computers. One common problem, for example, is presbyopia, a type of farsightedness in which the ability to focus on nearby objects is gradually diminished as the aging eyes’ lenses lose elasticity.

More importantly, the displays could one day aid people with more complex visual problems, known as high order aberrations, which cannot be corrected by eyeglasses, said Brian Barsky, UC Berkeley professor of computer science and vision science, and affiliate professor of optometry.

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