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Public Health2744 articles archived since 1845

A bushel of facts about the uniqueness of human pubic hair

Like many people, I ask myself continuously about some of life’s biggest mysteries. Why are we here? What is the meaning of life? Why do we have those strangely sparse, wiry little hairs growing around our genitals—hair that is singularly different from all the other hair on our bodies?...

March 1, 2010 — Jesse Bering

Two hospital-acquired infections estimated to have killed 48,000, cost $8.1 billion in 2006

When patients get infections in the hospital, the ramifications can be expensive—and sometimes deadly.

Hospital-acquired infections (HAIs), including staph, pneumonia, sepsis and others, account for 44,000 to 98,000 deaths and $17 billion to $29 billion in additional costs each year, the Institute of Medicine (the health arm of the National Academy of Sciences) estimated about a decade ago...

February 22, 2010 — Katherine Harmon

Finches Seek Out Sick Dining Companions

A study in the journal Biology Letters finds that male finches prefer dining next to a sick bird despite the risk of infection, probably because the lethargic companion is less likely to engage in food fights...

February 19, 2010

King Tut's Tough Life

New analysis of the mummy of King Tut, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, shows that the boy king had severe bone disease and malaria. Christopher Intagliata reports...

February 17, 2010

Whaddaya Do with a Dead Whale?

Scientific American magazine Editor in Chief Mariette DiChristina talks with podcast host Steve Mirsky about some of the articles in the February issue, including one on the ecosystems that arise around the carcasses of whales that die and fall to the ocean floor; the warfare between our cells, our allied microbes and disease-causing organisms; and ways to improve the internal combustion engine...

February 10, 2010 — Steve Mirsky
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