11:40 am
Wed August 27, 2014

Addiction in the Orchestra: Classical Music's Drink and Drugs Problem

Lead in text: 
At 15 she was playing the Royal Albert Hall. At 21 she was breakfasting on vodka. As a new documentary explores addiction in classical music, cellist Rachael Lander tells her story
I was 23 when it dawned on me that I might be an alcoholic. It was a cold February morning and I was in a public lavatory in south London, decanting supermarket-brand vodka into an empty water bottle, so I could carry it undetected in my handbag.
Tick-Borne Diseases
5:47 pm
Mon August 25, 2014

Ticked Off: Maine Lab Tracks Growing Impact of Disease-Carrying Pests

A deer tick.
Credit File photo / MPBN

SCARBOROUGH, Maine - Twenty-five years ago, a critter about the size of a poppy seed grabbed the attention of a few researchers at Maine Medical Center. It was the deer tick - a tiny creature that carries a potentially devastating illness: Lyme disease. The researchers formed the Vector-borne Disease Lab to learn more about where deer ticks occur in Maine and about how they spread disease. A quarter of a century later, the lab is as busy as ever. Patty Wight has the first of two stories on the work being done there.

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Flouride concerns
11:27 am
Thu August 21, 2014

Survey: 10 Maine Towns' Wells Too High in Fluoride

DEDHAM, Maine (AP) _ Tests on private wells around Maine found dangerously high levels of fluoride in 10 towns.

The Portland Press Herald reports the tests were performed in about 25 percent of Maine towns and Scientific American reported the results on Wednesday. Eight of the 10 towns with dangerously high levels are in Hancock County. Maine Geological Survey director Robert Marvinney says that is likely attributable to a high level of granite in the area.

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Maine Calling
1:55 pm
Tue August 19, 2014

Alternative or "Complementary" Medicine

Just what is "alternative" or "complementary" medicine and what is its relationship to traditional medicine? There are numerous health care practices, products and therapies which fall outside what is taught at established medical schools or used in conventional medicine. Examples of alternative medicine include homeopathy, naturopathy, chiropractic, energy medicine and acupuncture.

Host Jennifer Rooks speaks with:

Liz Strawbridge, family medicine physician specializing in integrative medicine

Chris Haskell, licensed acupuncturist with Rocky Coast Acupuncture

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7:09 am
Tue August 19, 2014

Study: More Than 178,000 Mainers Rely on Food Banks

More than 178,000 Mainers use food banks to help stay afloat, according to a new study.

The study, from the Feeding America Food Bank Network, found that nationwide, one in seven Americans relies on food pantries and meal service programs. That's more than 46 million people, including 12 million children.

Clara Whitney is with Good Shepherd Food Bank, which is part of Feeding America's network of food pantries. She says the study showed the network's Maine food banks getting an average of 11 visits per year from families — and that's significant.

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Genetic disorder
5:11 pm
Mon August 18, 2014

Doctor: Genetic Disease More Widespread in Maine's French Population Than Thought

Dr. Dervilla McCann has been deeply involved in researching the genetic disease known as FH.
Credit Josie Huang / MPBN

AUBURN, Maine - Back in February of 2012, MPBN reported a story about a rare genetic disorder that can cause sky high cholesterol and lead to early heart attacks, strokes, and death. The disease is called familial hypercholesterolemia - or FH - and, according to experts, it affects about one in every 500 people.

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ACA coverage
3:52 pm
Wed August 13, 2014

1,200 Mainers Must Act to Avoid Losing Coverage

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) _ About 1,200 Mainers who've failed to submit necessary documents verifying their eligibility for the Affordable Care Act exchange must act soon to avoid losing their health care coverage.

Consumers have until Sept. 5 to submit outstanding citizenship or immigration documents or they will lose their coverage on the health care exchange on Sept. 30.

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Depression's toll
5:15 pm
Tue August 12, 2014

Robin Williams Death Highlights Depression's Indiscriminate Toll

Robin Williams in 2011.
Credit Eva Rinaldi / Wikimedia Commons

PORTLAND, Maine - The suicide of actor-comedian Robin Williams this week highlights how indiscriminate depression can be:  It can strike anyone, anywhere.  The actor had been open about his bouts of depression and substance abuse for years, and he recently announced he was returning to a 12-step treatment program.  But depression is often hidden, and with tragic consequences.

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4:16 pm
Tue August 12, 2014

Maine Attorney General Reviewing State's E-Cigarette Laws

The first generation of so-called e-cigarettes.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

AUGUSTA, Maine - Some call them e-cigarettes, others call them personal vaporizers. But whatever you call them, use of the devices is growing, and that has prompted Maine Attorney General Janet Mills to review state laws covering their use. Mills is meeting with health advocates and others over the summer to look at possible changes to state law.

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7:40 am
Tue August 12, 2014

Maine Concerned About Tick-Borne Diseases

PORTLAND, Maine — Doctors in Maine are reporting a high number of tick-borne diseases this year.

The Portland Press Herald reports that the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention has tracked 103 cases of the disease anaplasmosis so far this year. That is already more than the 94 cases reported for all of 2013.

Babesiosis, another tick-borne disease, is also trending upward. So far in 2014 there have been 20 reported cases, compared with 36 for all of last year.