(oatawa/iStock, Getty Images) Combine the vast power and reach of social media, the unlimited resources of websites and apps, and the unquenchable thirst for health information and motivation. The result is a powerful tool for researchers, health care providers and patients. But like many aspects of the internet, it can be a mixed blessing. “Social…

(LaylaBird/E+, Getty Images) Most people realize getting medical help quickly is crucial in response to a heart attack or stroke. But it’s important to know the signs so you can act. “It is an emergency. People need to call 911,” said Dr. Erin Michos, associate director of preventive cardiology at the Johns Hopkins Ciccarone Center…

(margouillatphotos/iStock, Getty Images) This story is part of Eat It or Leave It?, a series that provides a closer look at the pros and cons associated with certain foods and drinks – and cooking options if you decide to eat them. Grapefruit looks sweet and friendly, but you might have heard it possesses powers far…

Halle Spivey survived after her heart stopped for 27 minutes. The Spivey family, from left: brother Charlie, Halle, mom Autumn, and dad Britt. (Photo by Theresa Bluhm Photography) Britt Spivey knew something was wrong when his pregnant wife showed up at his work following what was supposed to be a routine doctor visit. Autumn started…

(serezniy/iStock, Getty Images) Tobacco smoke from hookahs may cause blood clots, which can lead to heart attack or stroke, according to new research conducted in mice. Hookah, also called “waterpipe smoking,” is a method of smoking tobacco that is often perceived as less harmful than cigarettes. It consists of a head that holds the tobacco,…

(izusek/E+, Getty Images) Too few Medicare recipients take part in cardiac rehabilitation despite the services being available to them, according to new research that showed women, the elderly and minorities are most likely to miss out. “Cardiac rehabilitation has strong evidence demonstrating its lifesaving and life-enhancing benefits, and Medicare Part B provides coverage for the…

(Shidlovski/iStock, Getty Images) If you want to protect your brain, get busy protecting your heart. Lifestyle behaviors that boost cardiovascular health, such as physical activity and quitting smoking, also contribute to good cognitive health. It starts with adequate blood flow. “If the heart isn’t pumping strongly or the blood vessels leading to or in the…

Alicia Bravo helped her community raise money for a chest compression system, and a year later it saved her life. (American Heart Association) When Alicia Bravo saw the EMS service in her childhood hometown was holding a 5K race to raise money for a mechanical chest compression system, she signed up right away. As an…

(drbueller/E+, Getty Images) Transplants from donors with hepatitis C may be a safe option for those awaiting new hearts – a major development in curbing the nationwide organ shortage, according to new research. Patients who received heart transplants from donors who had hepatitis C saw similar outcomes a year after surgery as those whose donors…

(ipopba/iStock, Getty Images) The top number on a blood pressure test is widely viewed as the best gauge of a person’s overall risk for heart disease. But the bottom number could be important when it comes to evaluating the chance of a person having scars on their brain that could be an indicator for dementia,…