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Katharin Czink is WGN’s Medical Watch Producer.

Recent Articles
  • 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: […]

  • Bedside Lessons: Young patients head back to school too

    As kids head back to school this week, what about those who are sick? Just watch the way some public school teachers are extending their reach — bringing lessons to the bedside. Like most school kids, her day started with a test, but this one was a little different — an echocardiogram to check the nine-year-old’s heart function. Keniya Noys has been a patient at Lurie Children’s in Chicago since July. She’s waiting for a new heart. But today is […]

  • Kidney transplant patients may have new way to fight off rejection

    A kidney transplant that lasts for life. It’s the ultimate goal. But the drugs that keep a donor organ going also pose the greatest threat. Now a new approach to fighting off rejection – but is it safe? One woman says she’s willing to take a chance to find out. It looks like a scene from a sci-fi movie … a bag of human cells sways steadily. Scientists prep tubes and machines in an ultra-sterile lab. But what looks like […]

  • Alternate breast cancer treatment more direct route to tumor cells

    An alternative form of a common breast cancer drug glides on the skin instead of traveling the distance through the blood stream. It’s a more direct route to tumor cells, and it may help patients avoid obstacles along the way.   Rosalie Saviano, breast cancer survivor: “I had three different areas of cancer in my right breast.”   The diagnosis wasn’t a surprise for Rosalie Saviano. Her mother and sisters had faced the same news. Her doctor recommended a lumpectomy, […]

  • A calming touch: Massage helps sick children

    For the sickest children who rely on life-sustaining technology – a calming touch helps them breathe a little easier. Outside they swing happily, freely. An adapted playground hints at the more complex equipment housed inside Maryville’s Children’s Healthcare Center. There’s room for 12 – all classified as medically fragile. The young patients rely on respirators, pumps and monitors to keep them alive and well. This is transitional care – the children stay until they’re stable enough to go home and […]

  • Scuba diving an unlikely tool for kids and adults with autism

    Going deep in search of a sense of calm. Scuba diving builds confidence, especially for those with disabilities. But for kids and adults with autism spectrum disorders, there’s an added benefit. The lesson starts at the side of the pool. Twenty-six-year-old Nick Johnson and his dive buddy – his dad Glenn — gear up. Nick Johnson, scuba student: “Ever since we started diving, felt we’re part of a team, we’re more connected.” Glenn Johnson, Nick’s father: “I’ve always wanted to […]


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