Lauren Bavis / Side Effects Public Media

Why New Mothers In Indiana Are Dying At One Of The Nation’s Highest Rates

Courtney Reimlinger was breastfeeding her week-old son last year when she felt a pain in her chest. The pain was excruciating, the 23-year-old Indianapolis native remembers, much worse than the 10 hours in labor she'd spent a week before. It spread up her neck and into her head, and soon she was slipping in and out of consciousness.

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On The Front Lines Of A Drug Crisis: A New Video Series

On The Front Lines Of A Drug Crisis: A New Video Series

The opioid addiction crisis is often reported on in desperate terms. But, to the people working on the frontlines of the problem, there are known and proven approaches that can help.

Maddie McGarvey / Side Effects Public Media

Jenn Glaser lay in bed with a severe pain in her right hip. In the last few days a large abscess had developed under her skin--an infection from injecting drugs. 

Legislation that would allow terminally ill patients to get access to experimental drugs is headed to the president's desk.

The House on Tuesday passed a "right-to-try" bill that was approved by the Senate in 2017.

"People who are terminally ill should not have to go from country to country to find a cure," said Rep. Michael Burgess, R-Texas, on the House floor Tuesday.

The bill, which President Trump is expected to sign, has patient advocates divided.

Jake Harper / Side Effects Public Media

One patient's death changed the course of Dr. Lilia Cervantes' career. The patient, Cervantes says, was a woman from Mexico with kidney failure who repeatedly visited the emergency room for more than three years. In that time, her heart had stopped more than once, and her ribs were fractured from CPR. The woman finally decided to stop treatment because the stress was too much for her and her two young children. Cervantes says she died soon after.

Bram Sable-Smith / KBIA/Side Effects Pubic Media

Taja Welton is ready for her daughter to be born. She’s moved into a bigger house, one with room for a nursery. She has a closet full of pink, Minnie Mouse-themed baby clothes. Her baby bag is packed right down to the outfit she plans to bring her baby home in that reads, “The Princess Has Arrived.”

“I can’t wait to put it on her,” Welton smiles. The princess even has a name: Macen.


Six months ago, Melissa Nichols brought her baby girl, Arlo, home from the hospital. And she immediately had a secret.

"I just felt guilty and like I didn't want to tell anyone," says Nichols, who lives in San Francisco. "It feels like you're a bad mom. The mom guilt starts early, I guess."

Across town, first-time mom Candyce Hubbell has the same secret — and she hides it from her pediatrician. "I don't really want to be lectured," she says. "I know what her stance will be on it."

Jake Harper / Side Effects Public Media

Hepatitis C cases in Marion County are up so much, the public health department in Indianapolis declared an epidemic. A syringe exchange program is part of the county’s answer. 

Updated at 8:48 p.m. ET

The birthrate fell for nearly every group of women of reproductive age in the U.S. in 2017, reflecting a sharp drop that saw the fewest newborns since 1987, according to a new report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

There were 3,853,472 births in the U.S. in 2017 — "down 2 percent from 2016 and the lowest number in 30 years," the CDC said.

The tall, gangly man twists a cone of paper in his hands as stories from nearly 30 years of addiction pour out: the robbery that landed him in prison at 17; never getting his GED; going through the horrors of detox, maybe 40 times, including this latest, which he finished two weeks ago. He's now in a residential unit for at least 30 days.

Children and adolescents are getting fewer prescription drugs than they did in years past, according to a study that looks at a cross-section of the American population.

Jupiterimages/Getty Images

Thirty U.S. states have enacted medical cannabis laws, and all but one of them include cancer in the list of conditions allowed. Such laws give cancer patients across the country access to a substance that remains illegal under federal law. Anecdotal reports suggest it’s helpful in managing symptoms of chemotherapy, like pain and nausea.

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What's Your Health care Workaround Story?

What's Your Health care Workaround Story?

What is the craziest thing you've had to do to get the health care you need? We're launching a new podcast called "The Workaround", and we're looking for your stories!

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