Scientists have struggled for decades to find answers for boys with Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a devastating muscle disorder. But now, new research into cardiac stem cells is offering hope — and going straight to the heart of what cuts patients’ lives so short.
Incurable. Degenerative. Terminal. For decades, those terms have lingered in the ears of patients with a little-known lung disease while they have listened in vain for good news from the scientific community. Finally, investigators are breathing new life into the quest for novel treatments.
Parkinson’s disease notoriously robs the body of its ability to move. Some patients can no longer walk, and many feel ‘frozen’ in their bodies. The five men and women portrayed in these pages slowed the excruciating creep of the disease in the most challenging way possible: They decided to move more — and with more determination — than ever before.
Today, Cedars-Sinai medical resident Cholene Espinoza, MD, studies sonograms, looking for the curves of a baby hidden in a mother’s womb. But 25 years ago, her astute eye was used for something different: flying a spy airplane.
Being a beginner is tough — and there is no exception for doctors. It doesn’t matter how smart you are or how talented you feel, when you are new to a job, you will trip over a hurdle or two.
Like Clark Kent removing his glasses, Vince Hendrickson just makes one small wardrobe change to summon hidden strength. Twice a week, he pulls on bright-red boxing gloves to push through Parkinson’s symptoms and complete demanding workouts at a Los Angeles boxing gym. He hammers the punching bag with such tenacity that his coach calls him “Bulldog.”
All the best medical centers strive for health equity — but it cannot be achieved through lip service. We must embrace a deep understanding of the concept and teach it to the next generation of caregivers.