kidney transplants

The need for living kidney donors is growing, partly because people are living longer on dialysis, explains Dr. Vaughn Whittaker, a transplant surgeon at Upstate University Hospital.

People are usually born with two kidneys and can live with just one, and a kidney from a live donor tends to be of higher quality, he says. Whittaker explains the safety factors and support system that let almost any healthy adult make a living kidney donation, as well as  breakthroughs like the ability to donate to someone with an incompatible blood type.

As Jody Adams scrolled through Facebook in January, one post stuck with her. It was written from the point of view of an infant seeking someone to donate a kidney to his ailing mother.

A nurse for 12 years and the mother of six children, Adams says the idea of donating one of her healthy kidneys had never crossed her mind -- until she read that post. She didn’t want to imagine a little boy growing up without a mother, especially if she could help. It didn’t matter to her that she did not know the family.

It’s never too late to maintain an active brain, says Patrick VanBeveren, the physical therapy supervisor at the The Centers at St. Camillus rehabilitation and skilled nursing facility.

VanBeveren stresses that physical activity, good nutrition and stress reduction are the “big three” for lifelong brain health. He describes simple ways to start -- taking short walks, eliminating any unhealthy food from your diet and setting aside a few minutes to relax on a regular basis.

Nurse practitioner Anthony Cerminaro, who specializes in hematology and oncology, writes thrillers in his spare time. One of his characters is a doctor who graduated from Upstate Medical University in Syracuse.

Cerminaro joins us to talk about his books, "The Ten Knife Murders" and "Bonding Over Bullets" on this week’s show.

Also on this week's show: how multidisciplinary care helps breast cancer patients, plus kidney transplants.

Strokes that occur in women create symptoms that are different than those in men. Women may experience the classic sudden numbness or severe headache, but they may also develop arm pain, general weakness or hiccups.

Rochele Clark, Upstate Medical University's stroke program coordinator, explains the importance of calling 911 immediately. Quick action is essential to help lessen the damage from a stroke.