Althea A. Fung


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Headaches 101: Symptoms, Diagnosis and Management - North Shore-LIJ

Almost everyone gets headaches – about 95 percent of women and 90 percent of men, according to the American Headache Society. They can be related to stress, diet, the environment or a symptom of another medical condition. For most, headaches go away with the use of over-the-counter medications or even a soothing bath, but for others, intense headaches happen often and make completing daily tasks next to impossible.

A migraine is a powerful headache, typically in one area of the head that can cause light and sound sensitivity, nausea and vomiting, which can sustain for hours or days.  Some migraines come with early warning signs called auras, which display as flashes of light, tingling in the arms or legs, and blind spots.

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Althea Fung
Fun in the Sun with Sunscreen - North Shore-LIJ

Even though the summer is drawing to a close, it does not mean it’s time to throw out your sunscreen. An important part in skin cancer prevention and maintaining healthy skin is using sunscreen year round to protect your skin.

So, how do you know what sunscreen is right for your children?

The first step is to understand how to select the right sunscreen for you and your children.  Sunscreen’s effectiveness is represented by the sun protective factor (SPF), which should always be clearly labeled on the packaging. This number represents  the comparison of how much time it would take for your skin to burn when it is unprotected versus when it is covered by sunscreen.  For example, if a person normally starts to burn after 10 minutes of sun exposure, while wearing an adequate amount of SPF 30 sunscreen, theoretically it should take 30 times or 300 minutes to burn. 

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Althea Fung
Sprains and Strains - North Shore-LIJ

With summer vacation just days away, your children are probably gearing up for foot races in the park, bike riding, and swimming, which often leads to injuries like sprained ankles or strained wrists. Sprains and strains are common injuries among active children with more than 900,000 kids in the United States visiting emergency rooms each year.

It’s important to recognize the signs and symptoms of these common injuries:

  • pain and swelling in the injured area 
  • difficulty moving the injured area
  • bruising or redness.

A sprain is a twist or tear of a ligament – the short band of tough flexible, fibrous connective tissue that connects two bones. A strain is also a twist or tear but of a muscle.

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Althea Fung
Prenatal Care Can Make a Difference in a Child’s Life - Everyday Health

From the backseat, 18-month-old Alex DeCrane Sloan babbles a mile a minute while his parents make the hour-long drive to Children’s Hospital of Illinois for his routine checkup.

Listening to Alex’s spirited baby talk, you’d never guess that this boisterous toddler had once faced a life-threatening heart condition that required critical prenatal care. 

Alex’s mother, Jessica DeCrane, does.

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Althea Fung
In the Air Again After Hip Replacement Surgery - Everyday Health

In 2011, Michael Standish was only 44, but the cartilage in his hips had deteriorated to the point where he couldn’t complete simple tasks. Getting dressed in the morning became a challenge.

“He hasn’t been tested, but it’s likely Michael has a genetic condition that is causing degenerative arthritis,” explains William Hartley, M.D., an orthopedic surgeon at Memorial Hospital. Dr. Hartley first saw Mr. Standish in 2008, and knew total joint replacement surgery was the right course of action.

“Michael is young to have hip replacement surgery—it’s more common among 50 to 55 year olds—but I knew it could correct his condition,” Dr. Hartley says. 

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Althea Fung
‘Amazing’ Recovery After Spine Injury - Everyday Health

After a hard fall in a hallway, Kimberly Moore embarked down a path of bizarre medical symptoms that ultimately led to a diagnosis and successful spinal surgery at Memorial Hospital.

Ms. Moore, 47, an office administrator, was at work when she fell. “I was wearing heels and a pair of slacks with a deep cuff. I think my heel caught in the cuff,” she says. “I fell forward, jerking my head back, and fell hard on my hands and knees.”

Soon after the spill in October 2010, Ms. Moore began exhibiting strange symptoms that confounded even her doctors.

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Althea Fung
Hypertension Screening - Everyday Health

Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is a serious chronic disease. Unlike many other conditions it has no signs or symptoms, so patients can have the disease for years without knowing. Left untreated high blood pressure can cause serious injury and even death.

But high blood pressure is completely preventable and for those already with the disease it is manageable with proper diet and exercise.

First things first – Get the Facts.

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Althea Fung
Secondhand Smoking Linked to Mental-Health Problems in Children - National Journal

Children who are exposed to secondhand smoke are more likely to have mental and behavioral issues and are more likely to smoke later in life, according to two new studies in the August edition of the journal Pediatrics.

About 5 million children in the United States live in homes where they are exposed to secondhand smoke, which puts them at greater risk for asthma, ear infections, and sudden infant death syndrome, according to researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health.

According to the new studies from Harvard and Washington University in St. Louis, children exposed to secondhand smoke more commonly have behavioral and mental-health problems and are more likely to smoke when they grow up than children from non-smoking homes.

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Althea Fung
A Parent's Military Deployments Take a Major Toll on Children's Mental Health, Study Finds - National Journal

More fallout from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq: Children with an active-duty parent deployed there for long periods were more likely to be diagnosed with a mental health problem than children whose parents were not deployed, researchers reported on Monday.

In the 10 years since the two wars began, more than 2 million servicemen and -women have served in wartime duties, with more than half of them being deployed more than once, according to the National Military Family Association, a support organization.

Those serving in Iraq and Afghanistan are more likely to have families than their counterparts in any wars in U.S. history. A majority of military children -- 75 percent -- are under the age of 11.

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Althea Fung