Medic alert bracelets can save lives but can also draw unwanted attention, especially to young people with illnesses. Hope Paige Designs has found a way to rectify this problem with stylized versions of the ordinarily bulky bracelets. The Hope Paige bracelets come in a variety of styles, crafted from materials like leather, hemp and rubber, and each piece bears a stylish version of the important medic-alert emblem. Medic alert and awareness jewelry can be seen at www.hopepaige.com.

nNew research courtesy of an assistant professor at Louisiana State University offers new theories on surgery in patients over 80. Dr. Hernan Bazan led a team in researching the higher risk of embolization or stroke during the artery-expanding procedure known as carotid artery stenting in elderly patients.

“We hypothesized that elderly patients have more heavily calcified arches than younger patients,” Dr. Bazan says.

The aortic arch is the bend between the two sections of the aorta, from which the carotid arteries branch. The study found that patients over 75 had markedly more calcium in these arch areas and that these calcium levels could indicate risk of stroke in elderly patients.

Doctor and blogger Maoshing Ni reports that power naps (10-30 minutes a day) can increase longevity. Mao says a midday nap is one of the best ways to decrease stress on the heart – stress being a serious factor in coronary heart disease. Dr. Mao cites great minds such as Albert Einstein, Winston Churchill and Thomas Edison as nap enthusiasts. For those with little time, Dr. Mao recommends short meditations, which rest the body in a way similar to sleep.

nEarly in November Ochsner Medical Center opened its new Labor and Delivery Unit at 180 W. Esplanade Ave. in Kenner. The facility will house the only Well-Baby Nursery and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit in Kenner.

“Obstetrical units in the greater New Orleans region have been delivering a record number of babies and this increased demand prompted us to bring these services back to Ochsner Medical Center – Kenner,” says Dr. Alfred Robichaux, Chairman of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

The new facility will also employ a new “Hugs & Kisses” baby tagging system intended to prevent abduction and transfer errors

It’s official: the Ironman competition is coming to New Orleans in 2009. The Big Easy will host the 24th event in the Ironman 70.3 series and will be the only qualifying competition within five states. New Orleans’ 70.3-mile course will wind through the historic areas of the city, where athletes will enjoy a 1.2-mile swim, 56-mile bike ride and a relaxing 13.1-mile run. Don’t forget to stretch!