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‘Pink slime,’ Taser risks, mindfulness meditation and other topics this week on ‘Sound Medicine’


“Sound Medicine,” also available via podcast and Stitcher Radio for mobile phones and iPads, covers controversial ethics topics, breakthrough research studies and the day-to-day application of recent advancements in medicine.

Tasers on the job: Do they pose an unnecessary risk? Tasers are commonly used by law enforcement officials to temporarily stun and are capable of delivering shocks up to 50,000 volts. Douglas P. Zipes M.D., professor emeritus at the Indiana University School of Medicine, studied the use of these devices and discovered that Tasers are capable of inducing abnormal heart rhythms and even cardiac arrest.

“Pink slime”: Why is it a problem? The use of “pink slime” in ground beef has become a subject of mass scrutiny in the media and public health arenas due to the often unreported nature of the process behind making our meat products. Although these products have been included in ground beef since 2001 with FDA approval, public health officials and the public are concerned with the inclusion of this product in beef labeled as 100 percent ground beef. Tune in to hear Stephen Jay, M.D., IU School of Medicine professor of medicine and public health, discuss the controversy and clarify the history behind pink slime.

How do breast cancer treatments affect the ability to exercise? A new study will commence this summer to explore how common breast cancer treatments affect the body’s ability to exercise. Participants will be tracked throughout their treatment to measure their fitness level, with the overarching goal of returning each woman to her pre-treatment level of fitness or better. Kathy Miller, M.D., and Jeff Sledge, Ph.D., exercise physiologist at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, who are the co-principal investigators of this study, discuss the implications for improving the quality of life of breast cancer patients following treatment.

Author discusses “Mindfulness for Beginners” Practicing “mindfulness,” or paying attention purposefully to the present moment, can have wide-ranging positive effects on various medical conditions, psychological distress, and prevention and wellness efforts. Jon Kabat-Zinn, M.D., professor emeritus of medicine at University of Massachusetts School of Medicine, created mindfulness-based stress reduction 32 years ago and visits “Sound Medicine” this week to discuss his new book “Mindfulness for Beginners: Reclaiming the Present Moment — and Your Life.”

“Sound Medicine,” co-produced by the IU School of Medicine and WFYI Public Radio (90.1 FM) and underwritten in part by Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, is aired on the following Indiana public radio stations: WBSB (Anderson, 89.5 FM), WFIU (Bloomington, 103.7 FM; Columbus, 100.7 FM; Kokomo, 106.1 FM; Terre Haute, 95.1 FM), WNDY (Crawfordsville, 91.3 FM), WVPE (Elkhart/South Bend, 88.1 FM), WNIN (Evansville, 88.3 FM), WBOI (Fort Wayne, 89.1 FM), WFCI (Franklin, 89.5 FM), WBSH (Hagerstown/New Castle, 91.1 FM), WFYI (Indianapolis), WBSW (Marion, 90.9 FM), WBST (Muncie, 92.1 FM), WBSJ (Portland, 91.7 FM), WLPR (Lake County, 89.1 FM) and WBAA (West Lafayette, 101.3 FM).

“Sound Medicine” is also broadcast on these public radio stations across the country: WLRH (Huntsville, Ala.), KSKA (Anchorage, Alaska), KTNA (Talkeetna, Alaska), KUHB (Pribilof Islands, Alaska), KUAF (Fayetteville and Fort Smith, Ark.), KIDE (Hoopa Valley, Calif.), KRCC (Colorado Springs, Colo.), KEDM (Monroe, La.), WCMU (Mount Pleasant, Mich.), WCNY and WRVO-1 (Syracuse, N.Y.), KMHA (Four Bears, N.D.), WYSU (Youngstown, Ohio), KPOV (Bend, Ore.) and KEOS (College Station, Texas).