May 22, 2013
They launched the 'Arab Spring' but now yearn for the good old days of a strongman
May 20, 2013
Richard A. Serrano: Is Meir Kahane's assassin now a changed man?
Genetic copies of living people from embryos no longer science fiction
Jewz in the Newz by Nate Bloom :
The Kosher Gourmet by Cathy Pollak:
Jews Inducted into Rock Hall of Fame; Anton Yelchin co-stars in New "Trek" film; Kutcher (but not Kunis) visits Israel; Jewish TV Star Praises Jewish Rap Star
WARNING: This WALNUT CAKE WITH PRALINE FROSTING, perfect for afternoon coffee, is addicting
May 13, 2013
Rabbi Nathan Lopes Cardozo: Why the giving of the document that would permanently change the world could only be done in desolation
David G. Savage:
Church-state, literally? Supreme Court weighing public school graduation in a church
May 10, 2013
Rabbi Berel Wein: Be all that you should be
May 8, 2013
Peter Ford: Why China is welcoming both Israel's Netanyahu and Palestinians' Abbas
Obama administration quietly backs out of appeal over new contraceptive mandate
At Kerry-Putin meeting, US-Russia relations thaw --- a tad
The Kosher Gourmet by Leela Cyd Ross :
Almost too pretty to eat, this colorful salad with Sicilian inspiration will tickle the taste buds and delight your visual sensibility
May 6, 2013
May 3, 2013
Kids, kittens the Same?
With employee perks at struggling Internet pioneer Yahoo! it's hard to tell
Artificial kidney offers hope to patients tethered to a dialysis machine
April 29, 2013
Poland's new Jewish museum celebrates life, doesn't revisit Holocaust
Terrorism in America: Is US missing a chance to learn from failed plots?
Boston Bomber's 'Svengali' Revealed
Tiny satellites + cellphones = cheaper 'eyes in the sky' for NASA
April 26, 2013
Clifford D. May:
Defense in the Age of Jihadist Terrorism
Sharon Palmer, R.D.:
How to feel your best -- with plenty of energy, a healthy weight and optimal mental and physical function -- without driving yourself batty
April 24, 2013
Jewish World Review
Ask the Harvard Experts: Something to cry about
Robert Shmerling, M.D.
Damaging your cornea by not tearing sufficiently
Q: I've been diagnosed with recurrent corneal erosion. My eyes are dry all the time. One eye doctor suggests putting small plugs in the ducts that drain tears from my eyes, which should make the tears stay in my eye longer and make my eyes moister. I use artificial tears all day long and an ointment at night. Will the plugs help prevent further eye damage? Also, I have a dry mouth and wonder if I have Sjogren's syndrome. If I have it, would the plugs still help?
A: Placing "punctal plugs" has become a common procedure for patients with severe dryness of the eyes. These plugs block your tears from draining. So the tears you make last longer in the eye. Your condition sounds severe enough that this approach seems appropriate to consider.
The dryness could be an isolated problem or part of Sjogren's syndrome (see below). Whatever it's from, punctal plugs can help relieve symptoms and protect the cornea.
Other ways to help avoid dry eye include:
Using artificial tears frequently
Steering clear of low-humidity environments
If possible, avoiding medicine that makes dryness worse (such as diuretics, antihistamines and certain antidepressants)
There are a variety of eye drops that may reduce irritation and help prevent corneal damage from not making enough tears. Doctors commonly recommend artificial tears and cyclosporine (RESTASIS). Your ophthalmologist can determine the best care for your eyes after a full evaluation.
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Sjogren's syndrome is an autoimmune disease. That's a condition in which the immune system mistakenly attacks its host. People with Sjogren's syndrome have dry eyes and mouth and inflammation in multiple organs, including the eyes, joints and skin.
Antibody tests can help diagnose this condition. Diagnosis is important because you may need more than just eye drops. For example, drugs that stimulate saliva production or drugs that suppress the immune system may be helpful.
Dry mouth increases the risk of cavities. So your dentist may recommend frequent dental cleaning and an oral rinse with fluoride.
Based on the symptoms you describe, I would suggest you see an ophthalmologist, dentist and rheumatologist for evaluation.
(Robert H. Shmerling, M.D. is a practicing physician in rheumatology at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, Mass., and an Associate Professor in Medicine at Harvard Medical School.)
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