Katharin Czink is WGN’s Medical Watch Producer.

Recent Articles
  • Understanding Williams Syndrome: Genetic condition brings host of medical problems but also unlimited capacity to love

    How a heart that is broken physically works flawlessly when it comes to emotion. For children born with Williams Syndrome, compromised heart function opens the door for an unlimited capacity to love. Maya is a happy, playful 18-month-old. “The moment I get home from work, the moment she wakes up, she’s usually always smiling and happy,” says Maya’s father Scott Ottenheimer.  “We celebrate and get so excited about the milestones because they mean so much to us.” When Maya was born […]

  • Fighting the good fight to fund childhood cancer research

    Many children survive childhood cancer but in some cases, they experience devastating, life-long side effects. And you may be shocked to know how little money goes for research for the future of the tiniest patients. Benny  Martinez is a thoughtful, caring 12-year-old. “He always gives it 150 percent,” says his mother Michelle Martinez.  “No matter what gets thrown at this kid, he just faces it with amazing poise and grace.” At a St Baldrick’s fundraiser last year, Benny shaved his […]

  • Helping to stop the cycle of violence can start with helping kids overcome anger

    Fighting violence is a contradiction in terms. Instead of battling, those in the trenches say what we really want to do is quell anger and stop the cycle. Changing minds may be the key to bringing about meaningful progress when it comes to saving our city and the people in it. Edward, Mercy Home resident: “When there’s dead bodies lying on the ground, I’m kinda used to it. I grew up in Chicago, like in a rough neighborhood. I started […]

  • Church opens its doors for worship and care for the wounded in violence-plagued Chicago

    Violence is a plague in Chicago and across the country. It is full of a risk for sudden brutal death or a slow decline filled with stress, grief and pain. Street crime invades kid’s lives like a disease. And for their parents the heartache is incurable. In response, the church has opened its doors, not just for worship but to care for the wounded. News of the violence plague reached Rome. Pope Francis took notice and offered his support and […]

  • For Chicago trauma center and its staff, city’s violence takes physical, emotional toll

    CHICAGO — Violence in Chicago doesn’t just affect those in dangerous neighborhoods – it has become a healthcare crisis that affects us all. The price of medical treatment in Cook County is exorbitant, trauma care averages more than $50,000 per injured person – and that doesn’t include follow-up or long-term care. The Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence says, in total, every year the city pays $2.5 billion for gunshot victims. Split among Cook County taxpayers, that is $2500 dollars a […]

  • Middle school math with a side of dance party keeps students on their toes

    For Oak Lawn-Hometown Middle School teacher Melissa Rose, the most important formula is one that brings learning math full circle. Mrs. Rose is passionate about her work, and the results that follow have earned her a huge amount of praise and adoration from her students. “One of the big things with math, a lot of kids come in with the mind set and they say they’re good at math or they are bad at math, and I don’t believe that […]

  • Newly engineered wheelchair rolls, rises and gets everyone on the same level

    On the Medical Watch, there is now a wheelchair that not only rolls but rises. It’s giving people who can’t walk the ability to stand and move. The inventor of the bionic arm reached even further to help wheelchair users thrive. Doctors at the Center for Bionic Medicine showed off the standing wheelchair at the Shirley Ryan Ability Lab Tuesday along with Jonathan Annicks, who has been in a wheelchair a little more than a year after he was shot. […]

  • Easy to find foods can help you fuel up and slim down

    On the Medical Watch: It’s not about what you don’t eat. It’s about what you do eat. Whether it’s 5 or 10 pounds, you can slim down by fueling your body with the right foods. Registered dietitian Vicki Shanta Retelny says, “It’s really about the quality of calories you’re taking in. It’s not about one specific food that’s going to make you lose weight miraculous.” But there are some choices that can make a significant impact — one comes in […]

  • New technique for removing thyroid leaves small scar only inside the mouth

    On the Medical Watch: A more cosmetically appealing way to remove the thyroid gland – and the only person who will see the scar is your dentist. “Traditionally we make a transcervical incision which is about a 4-6 centimeter incision straight across the neck,” says Dr Raymon Grogan, a endocrine surgeon at the University of Chicago Medicine. It’s the traditional approach that’s been used for at least a century. But the operation to remove the thyroid gland – due to […]

  • Kindness and caring just as important as reading and math in Miss Wood’s classroom

    Our Teacher of the Month teaches second grade in far northwest suburban Ingleside. Of course, reading, writing, math and science dominate her lesson plans, but it’s her kindness, caring and show of affection that’s having the most impact. Miss Wood’s personality shines through each day.  She puts a heavy emphasis on the importance of self-love and the love and affection for others. It’s part of the family-like atmosphere she’s created over the past 19 years at Gavin Central Elementary. In […]