Featured Topics

The Featured Topics section is designed to provide the media with timely news on critical health issues and identify leading researchers and clinicians who are transforming health through knowledge and discovery at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth).

Each topic provides in-depth stories, additional resources and a link to faculty members available for media interviews, which can be scheduled by calling the university's 24-7 Media Hotline at 713-500-3030. Please note that all requests for interviews must be approved by a member of the media relations team.

Stroke

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Nearly 800,000 people in the United States suffer a stroke each year – one every 40 seconds. It is the fourth leading cause of death and a leading cause of disability. From cooling the brain to infusing stem cells, UTHealth is working hard to change that. An international leader in research and clinical care, UTHealth was one of the original sites in the ground-breaking trial that found tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) could help stroke patients. Researchers are now studying autologous stem cells, drugs that can be used in combination with tPA, other potential clot-busters and brain cooling for stroke. The UTHealth Department of Neurology Stroke Team has also established a strong telemedicine program that takes the best of clinical care and research to outlying hospitals and their patients. UTHealth neurologists continue to work with partners including the Mischer Neuroscience Institute at Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center and Harris Health System’s Lyndon B. Johnson Hospital to bring cutting-edge care to patients. 


Autoimmune Disease

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When your body turns on you, bad things can happen. Designed to guard against viruses, bacteria and foreign invaders, the immune system sometimes malfunctions, resulting in scleroderma, lupus and more than 80 other potentially crippling disorders. Scientists and clinicians at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) have made critical research and patient care breakthroughs in autoimmune and autoinflammatory disease. They can share this expertise with reporters.


Brain Injury/Rehabilitation

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A blow to the head can lead to a major health problem called traumatic brain injury (TBI). It is a leading cause of injury-related death and disability, and those with even mild TBI may experience long-term changes that affect their thinking and emotions. Approximately 1.7 million people sustain a traumatic brain injury annually, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

At The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth), clinicians and researchers are studying how to improve outcomes for patients with TBI and other types of brain injuries. Faculty members also are exploring new ways to facilitate rehabilitation after an injury. Much of this work is being done in collaboration with Memorial Hermann Healthcare System.


Developmental Disorders

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According to the Centers for Disease Control, about 1 in 6 children in the United States had a developmental disability in 2006-2008, ranging from mild disabilities such as speech and language impairments to serious developmental disabilities, such as cerebral palsy, autism and intellectual disabilities. At The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth), researchers and clinicians are finding ways to give these children the early intervention and skills they need to live fulfilling lives.


Disaster Preparedness

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From natural disasters to public health emergencies and other crisis situations, the importance of being prepared for an emergency situation cannot be underestimated. Preparing and protecting your family, home and business can be a life-saving and cost-saving decision. Faculty members at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) are available to draw on their expertise in emergency preparedness, public health and a host of other disaster preparedness-related issues.


Healthy Aging

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In 2009 there were 39.6 million adults ages 65 and older, according to the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). By 2030, that number will nearly double to an estimated 72.1 million older adults.

Health professionals throughout The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) are working to treat and diagnose conditions affecting seniors, including the frail elderly. UTHealth is combining research, patient care and education to prepare for their critical future needs.


Heart Health

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Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the country, killing more than half a million people every year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. UTHealth cardiologists are stepping up to the challenge by offering a wide range of clinical trials and innovative patient care including interventional procedures in the operating room, education about creating a healthy lifestyle and heart screenings for young athletes. Partnering with the Memorial Hermann Heart & Vascular Institute and Harris Health System Lyndon B. Johnson Hospital, UTHealth cardiologists bring the best of cutting-edge care to their patients.


Neurobehavioral Sciences

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Clinicians and researchers from across the campus of The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) are discovering breakthroughs in diagnosing and treating neurobehavioral disorders. UTHealth is home to the UT Center of Excellence on Mood Disorders and the Center for Neurobehavioral Research on Addiction, which is funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, part of the National Institutes of Health.

The UTHealth Harris County Psychiatric Center delivers a comprehensive program of psychiatric and psychosocial services to more than 6,100 inpatient admissions and 14,000 outpatient visits annually. Read more about how UTHealth is making a difference.


Obesity & Weight Management

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Obesity is an escalating problem for all age groups in the United States. The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) is at the forefront of obesity prevention, research and treatment and its faculty members have developed community, education and technology-based obesity intervention programs that have worldwide impact. Healthcare specialists are available to discuss obesity prevention, genetics, nutrition, surgical solutions, childhood obesity, fertility and obesity co-morbidities and chronic diseases


Stem Cell Research

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From trying to create new cartilage in the laboratory to clinical trials for patients with brain injuries, scientists and physicians at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) are leading the way in stem cell research.

In partnership with Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center, UTHealth was the first in the country to intravenously inject a stroke patient’s own stem cells in a trial funded by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, part of the National Institutes of Health. Learn how researchers continue to push the boundaries of this promising field.