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Summer 2007


Are We Running Out of Doctors?

First, a predicted glut; now, an apparent shortage. Getting physician supply to match demand is hard; getting it wrong could be devastating.

Not Fade Away

As the population ages and Alzheimer’s disease proliferates, millions of minds are being lost. A spate of new drugs could stem the damage.

Energy Crisis

When the powerhouses of cells—mitochondria—black out, a host of diseases ensue. The trick is to get them humming again.

Borrowing From the Best

What can hospitals learn from Toyota and other industry icons? Four paradigm-shifting strategies that improve efficiency and care.

Out of the Shadows

The cause of hepatitis C was a mystery solved only after years of groundbreaking research. But the battle continues.

Message from the MGH

Thoughts on the threat of primary care’s collapse, by Peter L. Slavin and David F. Torchiana.

Second Opinion

Readers offer a farewell and discuss an error, pain and prions.

Picturing the Other Side

Photographer Max Aguilera-Hellweg’s most demanding assignment was one he gave himself: to understand doctors not by taking their pictures but by becoming one.

Quick Fix

Retail clinics are burgeoning. But whom are they really serving?

Genes in a Haystack

Here’s how microarrays—or “gene chips”—are used in the search for errant genes.

Mobile Aid

In 1792, a clever French army surgeon devised the “the flying ambulance.”

A New Step in Scarless Surgery

Years ahead of schedule, doctors perform on humans a surgery that involves reaching internal organs via the mouth or other natural orifices.

Stops and Starts

Research on caterpillar cells, football players and false positives.

Gripping New Technology

Most prosthetic arms are clumsy things. One research team is working to change that.

Should the HPV vaccine become mandatory for girls?

Point: Yes, it will help prevent diseases; counterpoint: No, it was inadequately tested.

Feigning Illness

Before turning medical students loose on real patients, most schools have them practice on imposters.

Child's Play

A solution to a sub-Saharan public health crisis is also ... a merry-go-round.

Heart and Soul

The author climbed a mountain against doctor’s orders—but not against his better judgment.

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