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Luis Fábregas

Fábregas: There’s a little hypochondriac in all of us — we’re just wired that way

By Luis Fábregas
It’s that time of the year when some of us who can’t shake a nagging cough suddenly think we have tuberculosis. Admit it. It happens to you, too. A symptom sneaks up, and the worst illness springs to mind. A headache ...

Fábregas: Many contributions but few tough solutions for obesity in America

By Luis Fábregas
Russian journalist Ilmira Alimguzina arrived in Pittsburgh last week, eager to learn about all things American: history, government and — wouldn’t you know it — obesity. Alimguzina, who is shadowing Trib journalists, told me that she’s interested in the issue ...

Fábregas: Judge makes comeback with imperfect heart, thanks to cardiologist daughter

By Luis Fábregas
Thomas Piccione’s heart became so weakened, he couldn’t tie his shoes without becoming short of breath. The Lawrence County judge, 69, had tried every available ...

Fábregas: Measles outbreak shows anti-vaccine crusade foolhardy, dangerous

By Luis Fábregas
When I was growing up in the early ’70s, there was no vaccine for chickenpox. Many of my schoolmates got sick with the virus, which covers the skin with hundreds of itchy blisters. I picked up a nasty case of ...

Fabregas: When you’re done reading this, take a break from sitting

By Luis Fábregas
Get up. Sitting can be hazardous to your health. Just when I thought I’d heard about every possible disease in the world, along comes the head-scratching “sitting disease.” Despite its peculiar name (and the fact that it’s not even a ...

Fábregas: Wolf should leap into Highmark-UPMC fiasco, but probably won’t

By Luis Fábregas
If you’re wondering what Gov. Wolf’s priorities will be over the next four years, don’t put your money on the UPMC-Highmark fiasco. As important as it is for thousands of people in the state, the divorce of these two health ...

Fábregas: Patients see red over hospital noise levels

By Luis Fábregas
Shhhhhhhhh! Have you noticed that hospitals are getting louder? Alarms beep constantly. Machines and carts roll in and out of rooms. And nurses yak like it’s happy hour at the bar. Can we start using our quiet voices, please? When I ...

Fabregas: Allegheny Health Network urgent care center is lifeline for Braddock

By Luis Fábregas
At first glance, the opening of a relatively small urgent care center in Braddock seems like a non-event. After all, there are dozens of urgent care centers everywhere, billed as convenient walk-in alternatives to jammed emergency rooms. We have a ...

Fábregas: Coffee’s the nectar for many Americans

By Luis Fábregas
Good thing the Steelers’ first playoff game falls on a Saturday. Most of us can sleep in Sunday, without needing massive doses of caffeine to make it through the day. Unless, of course, you work in public safety, health care or ...

Fábregas: 5 healthy wishes for the new year

By Luis Fábregas
Let’s all agree on something about 2014: As far as health stories are concerned, it was a hypochondriac’s worst nightmare. We had Ebola, measles, enterovirus 68 and, just when we thought we were in the clear, the mumps. Thank ...

Highmark backtracks on policy not to pay for anesthetic during colonoscopies

By Luis Fábregas
Health insurer Highmark Inc. has stepped back from a proposal to stop paying for full anesthesia for some patients undergoing colonoscopies, a spokesman said Tuesday. The controversial plan called for changes in the insurer’s coverage of propofol, a general anesthetic that ...