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Katharin Czink is WGN’s Medical Watch Producer.

Recent Articles
  • New drug may help with heart failure

    It’s a chronic, pervasive problem; Heart failure impacts millions of Americans, shortening their lives and reducing the quality of their daily lives. It’s been a decade since doctors and patients have had renewed hope. But a new drug is infusing a sense of excitement. “The holy grail of heart failure is to reverse what is going on in the heart and try to get some regeneration and make the heart stronger. Sometimes, by letting the heart work less it will […]

  • Cancer patient and caregiver’s comedy show unconventionally therapeutic

    A cancer patient, her caregiver and a comedy sketch show … not a conventional formula for laughter but for one couple, it’s been a therapeutic production. And their audience feels the same way. On stage, Judy Fabjance and her wife Kelly Beeman are a team, performing the two-person sketch show they wrote together. It’s called “Tales of a Stage 4 Cancer,” and it’s no drama. But there is a song about robotic tumors. Kelly Beeman: “We’re doing this show about […]

  • Breast cancer patients could shorten radiation therapy with concentrated dose

    Shrinking the length of time breast cancer patients receive radiation therapy. A one-time dose delivered in the operating room during surgery helps some patients avoid weeks of fatigue and discomfort. Dr Eric Donnelly, Northwestern Medicine radiation oncologist: “This lesion here is just 9.4 millimeters, just under a centimeter.” Right after this small tumor in the breast was removed, Northwestern Medicine radiation oncologist Dr Eric Donnelly zapped the cavity left behind with a dose of radiation. Dr Donnelly: “The majority of […]

  • Two new drug options give hope to those suffering pulmonary fibrosis

    Where there was once nothing … finally, something for patients suffering with a devastating lung disease. Not one, but two new drugs give hope to those running out of breath … and time. Arlene Brescia, pulmonary fibrosis patient: “I would be huffing and puffing, a lot of shortness of breath.” When her doctor told her the diagnosis? Arlene Brescia: “I was devastated. I thought, ‘Oh my life is over with.’” University of Chicago Medicine pulmonologist Dr Imre Noth says it’s […]

  • Blackhawks honor nurse who save the life of a teen

      There is a follow up to a story the Medical Watch reported last week in which someone who went out of her way to help someone else. Her efforts made the difference between life and death. Emily Petersen, a nurse practitioner jumped into action when a young hockey player collapsed at a local ice rink and she was honored at another arena last night. The Blackhawks presented her with their volunteer of the month award for saving a young […]

  • Blood test could take the guesswork out of concussions

    A portable, rapid blood test to detect concussion. It sounds like science fiction, but it’s in development now. And it takes the guesswork out of diagnosis. It’s like a portable laboratory – a handheld device developed by healthcare company Abbott. A few drops of blood on a cartridge and the i-Stat goes to work. Within minutes, the rapid blood analyzer can measure a range of organ functions and blood gases. The results help nurses and doctors make treatment decisions – […]

  • Stranger’s kindness helps save young hockey player’s life

    A small act of kindness. A stranger steps in and changes the course for a young hockey  player– near death after collapsing in front of his teammates. This is a story about heart, getting involved and saving a life. Emily Petersen, Lurie Children’s nurse practitioner: “Do you mind if I take a listen to you?” Just as she does for all her patients, nurse practitioner Emily Petersen checks Grey Small’s heart rate and his incision site. Emily Petersen: “No puffiness, […]

  • Chicago docs team up with faith leaders to combat effects of violence

    Doctors are recruiting faith leaders in their efforts to combat the effects of violence in Chicago. The University of Chicago Medicine and Northwestern Medicine are spearheading a program to train religious leaders in the community. People are afraid to seek counseling but often trust faith leaders. With proper psychiatric training, they can offer counseling to heal the emotional scars following gunshot wounds, domestic violence and school bullies. The faith leaders will also counsel witnesses of horrific events as well as […]

  • Small but mighty: New minature pacemakers protect the heart

    They’re smaller and slimmer than ever. And now a new miniature pacemaker travels deep inside the heart, where doctors hope it will be protected from damage and infection. Mary Moore, Lamb’s wife: “Gradually, I would be walking someplace and there he was behind me where in the past he was always ahead of me. It didn’t occur to me that it was his heart. I just thought he was getting older.” But it was Lamb Moore Jr’s heart that was […]

  • Respiratory virus EV-D68 growing threat in Illinois

    A growing threat in Illinois — a respiratory virus spreading and threatening children. The emergency room is filling up at Lurie Children’s as parents of children with viral symptoms are flooding the hospital — this as hundreds are admitted across the Midwest. For five days, four-year-old D’Mari Lockwood has been taking medicine in the hospital. The sweet boy seems happy now … in stark contrast to last week when his mother rushed him to the hospital. Lakeia Lockwood, D’Mari’s mother: […]


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