Keeping Ebola Fears in Perspective

Five Bigger Health Threats than Ebola to Americans Right Now—And What You Can Do About Them

While we all watch the Ebola outbreak in West Africa with justified concern—and while some observers have even expressed concern about the risk of bringing Americans with the disease home to the US—it’s worth remembering that we already know where Americans who are really worried about health risks should be focusing their concerns if they want to stay healthy: Disease prevention and health screenings, safe driving, and adopting healthy lifestyles.

AA0422601. Inaction

Inaction is our biggest threat when it comes to preventing disease and serious health threats. According to the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, optimal use of nine clinical interventions including colonoscopies, screening and treatment for high blood pressure, and the flu vaccine could prevent up to 100,000 deaths per year in people under 80 years old, and up to 40,000 deaths per year in people under 65. Yet only about a quarter of adults ages 50 to 65 are up to date on recommended immunizations and cancer screening tests, the CDC reports. HealthTap doctors offer more information on health screenings here.

2. Heart disease

This disease kills more Americans than any other disease every year. According to the American Heart Association, heart disease, which causes heart attacks and strokes, kills more people than all forms of cancer combined, and Americans can reduce their risk immediately by quitting smoking, managing high blood pressure, losing excess weight, and adopting a heart-healthy diet. HealthTap doctors weigh in on risk factors here.

3. Cancer

Cancer risk can be significantly reduced by lifestyle choices—not smoking, eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, using sunscreen and by getting regular cancer screenings recommended by your doctor. For more information about the most common types of cancer, risk factors, tests and tips, visit the Cancer Topic Page on HealthTap.

4. Stroke

Stroke is the number three cause of death in women, and the number four cause of death in men and, like heart disease, stroke-related risks can be reduced by making healthy life choices that include not smoking, staying active and exercising more, losing weight, and adopting a heart-healthy diet. Learn about risk factors from our HealthTap doctors here.

5. Traffic Accidents

Traffic Accidents are the leading cause of fatal injuries in both men and women according to the Mayo Clinic and the Centers for Disease Control. By wearing your seat belt, adopting a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to drinking and driving, and putting your cell phone away so you never drive while distracted by phone calls or texts, you’ll be reducing your risk of injury or death on the road.

Keeping health risks in perspective is one of the most important things you can do to stay healthy. Americans concerned about their health can be proactive about preventing and detecting the risks that are the greatest threats to their health.

Got more questions about staying healthy? Get free answers to your health questions from 62,000 HealthTap doctors now.

HealthTap Prime Featured on Good Morning America!

We’re excited to share that HealthTap and HealthTap Prime were just featured on Good Morning America, the most popular morning show in the United States. GMA Anchor Amy Robach introduced the segment by saying, “Doctor house calls are making a come-back with a high-tech twist.” Rebecca Jarvis, GMA correspondent, conducted her interview via live virtual consult with one of the doctors in our network, and a long-time HealthTap customer spoke enthusiastically about the service.

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AppRx: Top 8 Android Anatomy Apps

Every week, we bring you AppRx—high-quality health, fitness and wellness apps reviewed and recommended by HealthTap’s network of 62,000 top doctors. In this week’s edition, we take a look at 10 Best Anatomy Apps.


1. Visual Anatomy FreeAppRx | Visual Anatomy Free | HealthTap

Description: This app’s primary use is as a learning tool, but it can also be used for any professional who needs the occasional reminder. Additionally, this app is ideal for physicians, educators or professionals, allowing them to visually show detailed areas to their patients or students – helping to educate or explain conditions, ailments and injuries. Learn More.

Recommended By: 202 Doctors

Available On: Android – FREE


2. Anatomy QuizAppRx | Anatomy Quiz | HealthTap

Description: “Anatomy Quiz” is a quiz which invites you to test your knowledge of human anatomy. It may be used for testing and educational purposes for people well-informed about the anatomy. Game consists of 150 illustrated questions. Learn More.

Recommended By: 31 Doctors

Available On: Android - $1.99


3. Speed Bones MDAppRx | Speed Bones MD | HealthTap

Description: How fast can you point to your trapezium, trapezoid or triquetrum? Speed Bones MD is a fun an addictive quiz game that tests your speed and challenges your memory. Learn More.

Recommended By: 16 Doctors

Available On: Android – $1.99


4. Pocket Atlas of Anatomy TRAppRx | Pocket Atlas of Anatomy TR | HealthTap

Description: This pocket atlas is your best way to reference anatomy on the go! It combines definitions from Dorland’s Illustrated Medical Dictionary with illustrations from Gray’s Anatomy for Students, for an unprecedented level of accuracy and visual clarity. An ideal guide to structures and their definitions - great for quick consultation in the dissection lab as well as for convenient study anytime, anywhere! Learn More.

Recommended By: 10 Doctors

Available On: Android – FREE

 5. The Muscular System Manual

AppRx | The Muscular System Manual | HealthTapDescription: The Muscular System Manual by Dr. Joseph E. Muscolino makes the study of musculoskeletal anatomy easier and more engaging with a highly visual approach! This innovative, vibrantly illustrated atlas details the muscles and bones of the human body with unrivaled clarity and helps you build the strong anatomic understanding needed for success in practice. Learn More.

Recommended By: 8 Doctors

Available On: Android – FREE

 6. Rays Anatomy Skeletal System

AppRx | Rays Anatomy Skeletal System | HealthTapDescription:  Create knowledge about the symphony of your bones with this superbly simple and small app on skeletons and bones. Learn More.

Recommended By: 6 Doctors

Available On: Android – FREE

 7. Male Anatomy 3D – Anatronica

AppRx | Male Anatomy 3D - Anatronica | HealthTapDescription: A free 3D educational guide to the male human anatomy featuring an advanced interactive 3D touch interface. Wikipedia and Grays anatomy info available. Learn More.

Recommended By: 4 Doctors

Available On: Android – $4.99

 8. Anatomy of the Ankle Joint

AppRx | Anatomy of the Ankle Joint | HealthTapDescription: This series of lectures is aimed at anyone who is studying human anatomy. They are ideal for medical or nursing students, biological studies students and physiotherapists or doctors looking to refresh their knowledge. Learn More.

Recommended By: 2 Doctors

Available On: Android – FREE


For more Anatomy apps, visit HealthTap today!  And stay tuned for next week’s edition, 10 Best Baby apps!

What Is Whooping Cough?

As a whooping cough epidemic is growing in southern California, it is important to be informed about the condition, its diagnosis, and its treatment. Here, we’ve compiled some answers from our doctors to provide a basic understanding about whooping cough. For more information, visit our Whooping Cough topic page or ask a new question.

What is whooping cough?

“Pertussis (whooping cough) is a contagious bacterial disease, and often causes violent, uncontrollable coughing. Difficulty breathing may also occur.” – Dr. Geoffrey Rutledge

What is the timespan of whooping cough?

“Symptoms of whooping cough develop after a typical incubation period of 7 to 10 days (range: 5 to 21 days).Initially symptoms are similar to a common cold, but then progress to significant paroxysms of cough which are notable for an inspiratory “whoop”. Symptoms slowly resolve over weeks. The classic illness generally lasts 6-10 weeks. Routine childhood immunization is the best protection.” – Dr. John D. Simpson

What other health problems are caused by whooping cough?

“Besides the terrible cough, whooping cough (in young babies) can cause cessation of breathing (apnea), seizures, and death.” – Dr. Roy G. Benaroch

How can whooping cough be cured?

“Whooping cough, or pertussis, is caused by a bacterial infection so treatment is with antibiotics prescribed by your doctor. So, see your doctor for diagnosis and treatment. Vaccines largely prevent this disease.” – Dr. Sue Ferranti

What are the defining features of whooping cough?

“Whooping cough is diagnosed formally by testing for the bacterium that causes it. Most of us know it, however, from the funky cough it causes. After a bunch of coughing, there’s a sharp inhalation of breath that sounds like ‘whoooop’. The sound comes from air moving quickly through a swollen, narrowed airway. If you think you or someone you know has it, get to a doctor as soon as you can.” – Dr. Ronda Alexander

How long is pertussis (whooping cough) considered contagious after symptoms begin?

“If pertussis is treated and you have started antibiotics you are contagious for about 5 to 7 days. If you are not treated the period extends from 3 to 6 weeks.” – Dr. Josephine Ruiz Healy

Got more questions about Whooping Cough? Ask a HealthTap doctor now!

AppRx: Doctor-Recommended Alternative Medicine Apps

stk314099rknEvery week, we bring you AppRx—high-quality health, fitness and wellness apps reviewed and recommended by HealthTap’s network of 60,000 top doctors. In this week’s edition, we take a look at some doctor-recommended Alternative Medicine apps.







1. About Herbs

AppRx | About Herbs | HealthTapDescription: In this app, their Integrative Medicine Service, under the leadership of a pharmacist and botanicals expert, provides comprehensive, objective information about herbs, botanicals, supplements, complementary therapies, and more. Learn More.

Recommended By: 95 Doctors

Available On: iOS – FREE



2. Medication Guide

AppRx | Medication Guide | HealthTapDescription: The easiest way to lookup drug information, identify pills, check interactions and set up your own personal medication records. All mobile-optimized to speed up your browsing experience. Learn More.

Recommended By: 68 Doctors

Available On: Android – FREE


3. GoodRx

AppRx | GoodRx | HealthTapDescription: GoodRx lists a number of pharmacies that have many popular generic drugs for less than $4 per fill, and some where they even provide certain prescriptions for free! Learn More.

Recommended By: 56 Doctors

Available On: iOS – FREE



4. Breathing Zone

AppRx | Breathing Zone | HealthTapDescription: Breathing Zone uses a clinically proven therapeutic breathing technique that decreases your heart rate, and over time can even help lower High Blood Pressure. There are no complicated settings and no difficult breathing patterns to master. All you need to do is breathe in and out according to the guide. Anyone can it. Learn More.

Recommended By: 53 Doctors

Available On: Android – FREE


5. RxmindMe Prescription / Medicine Reminder and Pill Tracker

AppRx | RxmindMe Prescription / Medicine Reminder and Pill Tracker | HealthTapDescription: RxmindMe is a reminder app for your medications, vitamins and supplements. It allows you to enter all your dosage information, set up reminders and keep track of when you take them. Learn More.

Recommended By: 45 Doctors

Available On: iOS – FREE



6. Home Remedies (Free)

AppRx | Home Remedies (Free) | HealthTapDescription: Complete guide to Home Remedies and Natural Cures for Common Ailments. Learn how you can use natural cures to replace many of the most commonly used over-the-counter drugs in the treatment of common ailments. Learn More.

Recommended By: 37 Doctors

Available On: Android – FREE



7. Reflexology

AppRx | Reflexology | HealthTapDescription: Want to promote relaxation, improved circulation, reduction of pain, soothe tired feet, and encourage overall healing in yourself or others? Its all here. This app answers your questions, gives you the latest tips, techniques, and news. Learn More.

Recommended By: 19 Doctors

Available On: iOS – $0.99



8. Medicinal Herbs Bible

AppRx | Medicinal Herbs Bible | HealthTapDescription: Medicinal Herbs Bible is an application containing information over 330 traditional medicinal herbs and plants. For every type of herb included, you can reference a photo of the herb, description of the material, and information about the herb and its uses. Learn More.

Recommended By: 14 Doctors

Available On: Android – $0.99



For more Alternative Medicine apps, visit HealthTap today!  And stay tuned for next week’s edition, Top 10 Anatomy Apps!