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Columns

In it for the long haul

Dear Anne: I’m a 49-year-old who has been dating and living with my girlfriend for almost one year now. I’m madly in love with her, and she says the same. We have talked about marriage, and I would love to, but she keeps saying no. She went through a 25-year marriage that she thought ...

Placebo response may be at work on reader’s leg cramps

BY KEITH ROACH, M.D. DEAR DR. ROACH: I was a bit surprised that in your response to a question about coping with nighttime leg cramps some time ago, you made no mention of vitamin E. I was troubled with these painful cramps increasingly often and tried both calcium and magnesium supplements ...

America’s energy industry hangs in the balance

In his inauguration address, President Biden spoke of a nation moving forward as one to overcome the many challenges ahead, proclaiming that doing so “requires the most elusive of things in a democracy: Unity.” Unfortunately for the hardworking men and women employed in America’s ...

What those mourning the fragility of American Democracy get wrong

For many people, the lesson from the assault on the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021 — and more broadly from the experience of the last four years — is that American democracy has become newly and dangerously fragile. That conclusion is overstated. In fact, American democracy has always been ...

Dear Annie: Remember the thank-you note

Dear Annie: Recent letters regarding the acknowledgment and expectation of gifts have prompted me to write about an issue that has been bothering me lately. I am retired, and while I’m not wealthy by any stretch of the imagination, I have invested well and live a comfortable life. Besides the ...

Breakfast bread induces half-day snoozefest

DEAR DR. ROACH: Why do I feel sleepy for almost half the day whenever I have bread for breakfast? This only happens when I take bread. I’m an 18-year-old female. — A.B. ANSWER: There are several reasons. Bread is made up mostly of starch, which in turn is composed of long strands of ...

Dear Annie: Mysterious internet lovers

Dear Annie: I’ve been seeing this guy, on and off, since spring of last year. He pursued me, and I went along with it. We’ll have a few intense days or weeks, but then months can go by without seeing each other. But whenever I’ve asked him for help with things, he’s always helped me ...

The prognosis on extra heartbeat is usually normal

BY KEITH ROACH, M.D. DEAR DR. ROACH: I’m an 83-year-old woman in very good health who takes no medications. My doctor informed me that I have an “extra” heartbeat, but I have no noticeable symptoms. What is my prognosis? Will my heart wear out sooner? — R.P. ANSWER: Based on what ...

Out of many, one

It’s with heavy hearts that we write this letter. We believe that all of us, no matter which side of the political spectrum we happen to be on, want a country where our children and loved ones can thrive. We believe that, if we took the time to look closely, we’d find that most of ...

An advocate for the victim-survivor

The position of Commonwealth Victim Advocate was, admittedly, my dream job. Being a political appointment, the position has always held associated risks, and that has never been more evident. When it comes to those inflicting unthinkable pain and abuse upon others, I have always stood ...

Wedding on horizon

Dear Annie: My husband is estranged from his adult children and ex-wife, through no fault of his own. His son is getting married this summer, and recently we learned that we’ll be invited, despite his having cut off contact with his dad years ago. We’re not sure whether to go to the ...

A high cholesterol reading despite healthy habits needs review

BY KEITH ROACH, M.D. DEAR DR. ROACH: I am a 52-year-old female. During my annual exam this year, my fasting cholesterol came back at 217. I usually come in around 170-180. I am not overweight, do not smoke, eat well (not lot of fatty foods) and exercise on a daily basis by walking 1.5-2 ...

No compromise on COVID relief

Ten Senate Republicans have proposed a COVID-19 relief bill of about $600 billion. That's less than a third of President Joe Biden's plan. They promise "bipartisan support" if he agrees. Their proposal isn't a compromise. It would be a total surrender. It trims direct payments and ...

Still grieving my mom

Dear Annie: My mom passed away three years ago, and it’s still hard on me. I am 42 years old. Am I too old to cry? And should I be over her by now? — Missing Mom Dear Missing Mom: Two resounding no’s. You are never too old to cry, and there’s no getting “over” a huge loss like the ...

Pernicious anemia patient needs pain fix for osteoarthritis

BY KEITH ROACH, M.D. DEAR DR. ROACH: I have pernicious anemia. My doctor told me not to take any NSAIDs, including aspirin, because they can cause stomach irritation, and that pernicious anemia raises the risk of stomach cancer to three times the rate of the average person. I also have ...

GOP failures

With the electoral eviction of Donald Trump from the Oval Office, Republicans had a shot at redemption and resurrection. They missed and failed — and deserve to spend the next several years in political purgatory. The chaos now enveloping what's left of the Grand Old Party after four years ...

What’s the point?

The debate over whether to hold Donald Trump accountable for his role in the events that led to the siege of the U.S. Capitol has slipped into partisan farce. Let me say up front I think it's an open-and-shut case that Trump committed numerous impeachable acts, and in a healthy republic, any ...

Great expectations

Dear Annie: This is to all the parents or grandparents that have been hurt by their family because they have not been receiving calls, thank-you notes for all that they do, gifts for special occasions or a little show of care, concern or thought (and I hope this is a small population). If ...

What is proper treatment for mild case of COVID-19?

BY KEITH ROACH, M.D. DEAR DR. ROACH: With cases rising and all the information about COVID-19 out there, I have yet to read what should we be doing for people who have only a mild case. I know of three people in their late to mid-20s who all tested positive and only had sinus issues and one ...

What we owe our college students

Two weeks into spring semester at the University of Florida, groups of unmasked college students — 30 or more at a time, many hollering as they partied — stood in lines to enter bars and clubs in Gainesville. Photos in The Gainesville Sun showed them standing elbow to elbow, ear to ear. ...