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Podcast Season 1

S1 Episode 44: Fighting Parkinson’s with DBS

Parkinson’s Disease patient Elizabeth Larsen gives a deeply honest view of her Deep Brain Simulation (DBS) surgery to control her tremors. We learn what it feels like to have electrodes in the brain and what happens when patients want to change their tremor management software program.    Dr. Stieg: I’d like to welcome back our guests, Dr. Michael Kaplitt, Vice Chair of […]

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Podcast Season 1

S1 Episode 43: Facing Parkinson’s Disease

From mild resting tremors to freezing, stiffness, and loss of motor control, the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease progress relentlessly over time. Dr. Michael Kaplitt, Director of the Movement Disorders Program at Weill Cornell Medicine, along with his patient Elizabeth Larsen, explore how quality of life can erode over the years — and when it’s time […]

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Podcast Season 1

S1 Episode 42: Love in Captivity

The COVID-19 quarantine has changed everything about love and sex. Biological anthropologist Helen Fisher reveals how socially distant dating can nurture a relationship by slowing things down and encouraging more substantive conversation and deeper intimacy. Long-term couples have a different problem as they adjust to 24/7 togetherness and learn to carve out safe spaces. Plus… why it’s essential to laugh, […]

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Podcast Season 1

S1 Episode 41: Covid’s Invisible Bullet

In the war on COVID-19, doctors face an enemy like no other – mysterious, invisible, and medically confounding. Dr. Laura Kolbe, co-founder of the COVID+ Hospice and Palliative Care Unit at Weill Cornell Medicine/New York-Presbyterian explains a new first-hour emergency room protocol. We learn how the palliative care team allays suffering, comforts the sick, and […]

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Podcast Season 1

S1 Episode 40: Information Overload

Human brains are not wired for the staggering amount and variety of daily information coming our way. Dr. Marvin Chun, Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at Yale University, explains how our brains evolved to do one thing at a time, why they react poorly to the demands of multi-tasking, and why distraction undermines our performance […]

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Podcast Season 1

S1 Episode 39: Understanding and Destigmatizing Epilepsy

People with epilepsy have been stigmatized since the time of Hippocrates. Two epilepsy specialists, Dr. Caitlin Hoffman, a Weill Cornell Medicine pediatric neurosurgeon, and Dr. Heidi Bender, a neuropsychologist at Mt. Sinai Hospital, explain what happens in the brain to cause seizures. They give parents, teachers, kids, and their classmates a primer on understanding this […]

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Podcast Season 1

S1 Episode 38: Music’s Powerful Impact on the Brain

World-renowned soprano Renée Fleming is also a leading advocate for research and public education on the therapeutic power of music to heal the mind. Music’s psychological and neurological impact can help people suffering with dementia, Parkinson’s disease, and other brain disorders, and even restore speech after a stroke.  Recorded live at Juilliard, this episode also […]

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Podcast Season 1

S1 Episode 37: The Risks of Long-Term Space Travel

A three-year mission to Mars will have profound effects on bodies—and brains. The recent NASA study of twin astronauts Scott and Mark Kelly provides a new understanding of how life in space can alter cognition, heart health, and even gut bacteria. Dr. Christopher Mason of Weill Cornell Medicine and Dr. Mathias Basner of the University […]

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Podcast Season 1

S1 Episode 36: Brain-Healthy Eating

“Today Show” nutritionist Joy Bauer has easy, affordable, and delicious tips for making brain-healthy food choices. Boost your memory, strengthen your focus, and improve your blood flow by following Joy’s simple advice. Plus, the surprising benefits of coffee, and the 3 golden rules of snacking.   Dr. Stieg: I’m really happy to have Joy Bauer with […]

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Podcast Season 1

S1 Episode 35: Teen Brains at Risk

Dr. Frances Jensen, Chair of the Department of Neurology, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, and author of “The Teenage Brain,” explains how vaping, binge drinking, and pot smoking are especially dangerous for adolescent brains. Young adults are more susceptible to addiction, cognitive impairment, and mental health issues when exposed to such substances because […]