By CBS News producer Tony Maciulis
This week, our online partner WebMD revealed a list of the most talked about medical stories and the most searched health-related topics of 2010.
(Scroll down to watch the full interview.)
It should come as no surprise that bedbugs topped both the "top stories" and "search trends" list.
We certainly aired our share of bed bug stories, and, as WebMD's chief medical editor Dr. Michael Smith told us, those creepy little critters are not a figment of our imagination. There's a growing bedbug epidemic in this country, mostly centered in major metropolitan areas...like right here in New York City. Yuck.
That said, both he and our own medical correspondent Dr. Jon LaPook agreed that bedbugs don't pose a serious health risk, although they are very hard to get rid of and can cause some very uncomfortable bites. Watch the webshow for more great information on where they come from and how to eliminate them.
Michael Douglas revealed this year that he has throat cancer, and discussed openly that it could have been brought on by years of drinking and smoking. His story sparked a large interest in throat cancer, and that term made its way up the "most searched" list, as well.
Katie also asked Dr. Smith about medical information sites like WebMD, and the tendency for people to type in symptoms and perhaps incorrectly self-diagnose or cause themselves undue stress about their condition. His advice, and the advice of any expert you'd ask, is simply, "Talk to your doctor." The Internet is a vast and powerful tool for learning about health, and lots of other things, but nobody knows your body better than you and your physician.
Tis the season for those year ender lists: The Top Movies of 2010, The Top Downloads of 2010, and I have even seen a list of The Top Dog Names of 2010. (In Ottawa if you call the name "Buddy" you have a great chance a dog will answer.) But this webshow is more than just a listicle, it's actually news you can use about some of the most important stories impacting your health and wellness.
Enjoy it, and have a healthy and happy holiday season.