August 27, 2014

From $10 - $10,000 for Same Test

1 Prices for Common Blood Tests Vary Widely

Costs for 10 common blood tests vary widely finds a University of California/San Francisco study that looked at 2011 prices charged by 160 to 180 California hospitals. The median charge for a basic metabolic panel was $214.00 but, depending on the facility, costs ranged from $35.00 to $7,303. The median charge for a lipid panel was $220.00 but costs ranged from $10.00 to $10,169. Health insurance covers the bulk of these prices but patients without insurance will have to pay the price, which can be hefty. In general, teaching hospitals had lower prices than non-teaching hospitals. “ ... one of the most concerning findings is the small degree to which any factors could explain the differences. This shows that the way we price health care is so irrational,” said senior researcher Renee Hsia.

More at Www.washingtonpost.com | Posted 3 years ago by Melody Lesser

Previously: Mystery: Cost to Have Baby in Hospital

Tags: Medical Costs, University of California at San Francisco, Rene Hsia, Lipid Panel, Metabolic Panel

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (50%) / No! (50%)

Pie, Cookies, Cake, Oh My

2 Rats on Junk Food Don't Want Balanced Diet

If we're anything like rats, we may lose our appetite for a balanced diet after consuming too much junk food. Researchers from Australia, publishing in Frontiers in Psychology, found that a diet of junk food made rats fatter and reduced their appetite for novel foods, a preference which drives a balanced diet. After two weeks with access to pie, dumplings, cookies and cake, the rats' weight increased by 10 percent, and they became indifferent in their food choices (lost their preference for novelty). Researchers say that the study results help explain how engaging in a diet that includes excessive junk foods can alter behavior and weaken self-control, possibly leading to obesity.

More at EurekAlert | Posted 3 years ago by Peggy Rowland

Previously: Nickelodeon Rapped for Too Many Junk Food Ads

Tags: Balanced Diet, Junk Food, Rats Junk Food, Frontiers in Psychology, How Junk Food Ruins Appetite

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (47%) / No! (53%)

Movement Affects Hearing

3 Want to Hear Better? Be Still.

If you want to hear better, you know to stop talking, but did you also know that you should stop moving? Stopping movement improves hearing because it prevents unwanted sounds that are generated by our movements. However, that's not the only explanation for why stopping movement helps hearing, finds the study in Nature. Duke researchers say the interplay between hearing and movement has a counterpart deep inside the brain. The study used optogenetics, electrophysiology and behavioral analysis on mice to learn how the motor cortex of the brain anticipates movement and tweaks the volume control in the brain's auditory cortex, which affects conscious perception of sound. Specifically, movement can stimulate inhibitory neurons that suppress auditory cortex response to tones.

More at EurekAlert | Posted 3 years ago by Peggy Rowland

Previously: Personal Music Players May Impair Hearing

Tags: Hearing Health, Hearing Loss, Journal Nature, Improve Hearing, Standing Still Improves Hearing, Optogenetics, Electrophysiology

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (46%) / No! (54%)

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