Chicago Sun-Times Latest news from the Chicago Sun-Times Online en-us (Editor) Newspapers Chicago Sun-Times 84 34 30 Copyright 2014 <![CDATA[ A boost for biotech startups ]]> Lead story image

Paul A. Fehrenbacher and two fellow graduate students at Northwestern University are postponing their graduations with to develop a technology to help surgeons identify and keep from accidentally cutting blood vessels. Daniel Leventhal, a doctoral student in cancer biology at the University of Chicago, is helping advise two professors working to develop new ways of treating cancer with less radiation or by making radiation treatment more effective. Both Fehrenbacher, 34, and Leventhal, 26, are benefiting from Chicago’s little-known biotech incubator, Chicago Innovation Mentors, or CIM. CIM pairs would-be biotech entrepreneurs with seasoned experts, and provides hands-on business experience to aspiring … ]]> Wed, 24 Apr 2013 06:05:08 -0600 <![CDATA[ Seniors click in 47th Ward-based cyber-community ]]> Lead story image

A grassroots effort in the greater Bell School/St. Ben’s neighborhood gives senior citizens online resources to help them stay in their homes, even as local home values skyrocket. The effort is based on the Village to Village Network concept in which 89 communities nationwide have set up websites to help people “take aging into their own hands.” The Village to Village Network usually requires an initiation fee for members. The local project, named “Forward Chicago,” differs in a key aspect: It’s free. The website is at A Senior Council in 47th Ward Ald. Ameya Pawar’s office organized the effort … ]]> Mon, 11 Mar 2013 11:08:00 -0600 <![CDATA[ Proton therapy center offers precise alternative to typical radiation ]]> Lead story image

The Central DuPage Hospital (CDH) Proton Therapy Center offers an alternative, safer form of radiation for cancer patients. Partnering with ProCure Treatment Centers and Radiation Oncology Consultants Ltd., Warrenville’s CDH Proton Therapy Center is one of 11 in the United States. The lack of centers available is due to the difficulty to build the 60,000-square-foot facility. ]]> Thu, 10 Jan 2013 14:05:26 -0600 <![CDATA[ Entering new waters via tiny chip ]]> Lead story image

Swimmers will know in real-time this summer whether their neighborhood lake is safe from high bacteria, thanks to a test developed by a Chicago biotech startup. The startup, FCubed, LLC, invented the detection technology, which works with technology created at the University of Notre Dame to find DNA in a water sample. If DNA is there, the water isn’t safe because it contains sewage. The biochip and detection device got the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s OK just in time to meet the EPA’s mandate to provide the lake testing within 24 hours this coming summer, rather than the now-acceptable 48 … ]]> Wed, 19 Dec 2012 12:19:12 -0600 <![CDATA[ Tech firm rides health-reform wave ]]> Lead story image

A Chicago clinic and a suburban tech firm expect to grow as federal health-care reform takes effect — a massive overhaul that the Congressional Budget Office forecast this week will require $1.17 trillion in new government spending in the next decade, or $84 billion less than first estimated. ]]> Wed, 29 Aug 2012 06:03:21 -0600 <![CDATA[ Radiologists work to limit kids’ exposure to radiation ]]> Lead story image

Parents in Naperville concerned about radiation their children might be exposed to should they need an X-ray or CT scan can rest easy. Local radiologists already are doing many of the recommendations included in a new FDA proposal to reduce kids’ exposure. They also can help balance the benefits and risks of radiology exams. ]]> Sat, 07 Jul 2012 08:27:26 -0600 <![CDATA[ Vision to ease chronic illness ]]> Lead story image

A Chicago State University “Entrepreneurial Idol” contest revealed a new frontier of remote medicine intended to make patient care easier and quicker than ever before. The winner of the Business School contest, Sherrod Woods, a LeClaire Courts neighborhood native and an electrical engineer with 20 years of software and biomedical engineering experience, proposed a system to let patients with chronic illnesses send their vital signs to nurses and doctors without having to own a computer. Woods, 43, who founded a company 10 years ago to realize his vision, won $10,000 and free business consulting. The idea is particularly timely as … ]]> Thu, 19 Apr 2012 08:12:30 -0600 <![CDATA[ 10,000 additional employees join Emanuel’s wellness plan ]]> Lead story image

Ten thousand more employees at five city agencies have signed on to Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s plan to raise monthly health insurance premiums by $50 for employees who fail to participate in a “wellness program” to manage chronic health problems.Emanuel hopes to save $20 million in 2012 — and $240 million over four years — by riding herd over costly, but controllable problems like diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease and asthma. Obesity is also a contributor. So is heavy smoking. Last fall, City Hall issued a “request for proposals” (RFP) from companies interested in managing the wellness program. Eleven companies … ]]> Sun, 22 Apr 2012 10:19:11 -0600 <![CDATA[ Take it to Heart: Three ways to help relieve sleep apnea ]]> Lead story image

For most people snoring is not a medical problem, but for some, constant snoring may indicate a serious sleep disorder. Obstructive sleep apnea occurs when airflow pauses or decreases during breathing while you sleep, because the airway has become narrowed or blocked. Sleep apnea heightens a person’s risk of hypertension, diabetes and heart attacks, because of the stress that the apneic episodes place on the cardiovascular system. The amount of time someone with sleep apnea stops breathing can be from 10 seconds to greater than a minute or more. The stops can occur a couple of times in an hour, … ]]> Fri, 16 Mar 2012 08:06:57 -0600 <![CDATA[ Clear! Heart docs figuring out how to get your attention ]]> Lead story image

Actress Elizabeth Banks made a funny little film called “Just a Little Heart Attack.” Posted on the American Heart Association website, the film uses a good dose of humor to promote a serious message: Women have heart attacks, too, and their symptoms can vary from those typically seen in men. As with men, women’s most common heart attack symptom is chest pain or discomfort. But women are somewhat more likely than men to experience some of the other common symptoms, particularly shortness of breath, nausea or vomiting, and back or jaw pain, according to the heart association. Spreading awareness is one way … ]]> Tue, 14 Feb 2012 10:53:41 -0600 <![CDATA[ Stroke survivor chime choir weekly highlight at Edward ]]> Lead story image

The Edward Hospital stroke chime choir began in October, the brainchild of Judy Smith and Charlie Welsh, both caregivers to stroke survivors. They learned of the therapeutic and social benefits of chime playing while at a stroke camp. ]]> Fri, 16 Mar 2012 08:06:25 -0600 <![CDATA[ Around 10,000 visitors take tour of new Silver Cross ]]> Lead story image

On Sunday, Elizabeth Farmer became the first woman to feel a contraction in the new building. The pregnant Lockport resident held on to a doorframe for a moment but assured everyone no others were coming right away and she still expected to deliver at the end of March. Which was good because the birthing suite she was standing in at the new Silver Cross Hospital won’t open until Feb. 26. Farmer and her husband, Mike, expect to have their second baby at the new facility, which hosted “housewarming” tours this weekend. “We had about 3,700 employees’ family and friends here … ]]> Wed, 14 Mar 2012 08:10:59 -0600 <![CDATA[ When your eyes fail you ]]> Lead story image

Kenneth Woodrum, of Braidwood, knew something was going on when his right eye began tearing up. “It just kept watering and watering,” he said, “and that made my vision blurry in my right eye.” Woodrum travels quite a bit with his job and also noticed his night vision was not what it used to be. What he didn’t know was that his cornea had basically shut down and was filling with fluid, causing the blurry vision and tearing. Silver Cross ophthalmologist Dr. Timothy Kisla knew pretty quickly what the diagnosis was. He has seen it before. Woodrum had Fuch’s dystrophy, … ]]> Fri, 09 Mar 2012 08:06:33 -0600 <![CDATA[ Treatment for medical bills ]]> Lead story image

Kevin Kent, a 30-year-old entrepreneur looking to invent a next-generation baby monitor, negotiates with his doctor so he can afford the regular checkups he needs to regulate his diabetes. He recently paid $275 for a physical exam and lab work that would have cost more than $600 because he worked out a deal with his physician. The lab work includes tests of the thyroid, cholesterol and blood-sugar control, since diabetics are at increased risk of kidney and heart disease. “Usually, I pay with cash or a credit card,” Kent said. Kent is looking to take advantage of two technology innovations: … ]]> Wed, 06 Feb 2013 20:05:43 -0600 <![CDATA[ Valentine’s Day no holiday for depressed ]]>

Valentine’s Day next week means literally millions across the country will flock to candy stores, flower shops and favorite restaurants to let their special someone know how much they care. But for others, Feb. 14 brings feelings of loneliness or depression. Naperville Dr. Riaz Baber, 65, who is conducting clinical trials on the new anti-depression drug, Amitifadine, said Valentine’s Day often triggers an even deeper level of depression in those who already are struggling. “The national statistics we have indicate that there are 17 million people in this country who are clinically depressed, and we also know that 25 percent … ]]> Fri, 09 Mar 2012 08:03:38 -0600 <![CDATA[ Central YMCA swim program soothes special-needs children ]]> Lead story image

Joel Smith suffered a stroke when he was only eight hours old, causing weakness on his right side -- particularly his arm -- and affecting other motor and verbal skills. About four-and-a half years ago, Kelly Smith of Vernon Hills enrolled her son in a swim program for special-needs children at the Central YMCA in Vernon Hills. The water therapy has proved to be a godsend. “It’s helped him a lot,” she said. “Not only has it improved his swimming skills but it’s given him a lot more endurance and it helps strengthen that (right) arm,” he said. “The water … ]]> Sat, 10 Mar 2012 08:29:58 -0600