Some of 2013's biggest health news will keep making headlines in 2014. Many of these issues may already matter a great deal to your health — and perhaps your wallet.
Take our quiz to test your knowledge. (Answers, 5B)
1. The year's biggest health story was the rocky rollout of the Affordable Care Act's health insurance marketplace. Now the website is running more smoothly and policyholders are starting to use their new insurance. For those who still aren't insured and are above the income minimums, what is the deadline to get insurance or face a possible financial penalty?
a. March 31, 2014.
b. June 31, 2014.
c. Jan. 31, 2014.
2. In 2013, more people gave up smoking for "vaping," inhaling nicotine-laced vapor from electronic cigarettes. What's the next major e-cigarette development expected in 2014?
a. Vaporless e-cigarettes will be introduced.
b. E-cigarettes will be advertised on television.
c. The FDA is expected to begin regulating parts of the industry.
3. Actor Angelina Jolie had a preventive mastectomy last year because she carries the BRCA gene mutation that puts her at high risk for breast cancer. Her decision is helping spur women to consider the option. According to the National Cancer Institute, how effective is prophylactic double mastectomy at preventing breast cancer?
a. It removes 100 percent of the risk for breast cancer.
b. It reduces risk by 90-95 percent.
c. It reduces risk by 50-60 percent.
4. Twenty-one states and the District of Columbia have legalized medical marijuana. What's happening on the issue in Florida in 2014?
a. Florida will legalize medical marijuana.
b. The Florida Legislature will vote on it this month.
c. A group is gathering signatures to put a constitutional amendment legalizing medical marijuana on the November ballot.
5. The American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology issued controversial guidelines in late 2013 that would change how certain medications are prescribed to reduce the risk of heart attacks and stroke. You may want to discuss these with your doctor at your next visit. What's the issue?
a. Who should take cholesterol-lowering medications.
b. Who should take blood pressure-lowering medications.
c. Who should take baby aspirin to prevent heart attacks.
6. In 2013, a New England Journal of Medicine study ended early because it was so clear that a Mediterranean diet protects high-risk patients against heart attacks and stroke. Next up: research on possible benefits for people at lower risk. Name at least five components of the Mediterranean diet.
7. Vaccine-preventable diseases like measles and whooping cough, which can be fatal to infants, continued to rise nationally in 2013. Expect to see heightened public health messages on vaccines for people of all ages. Which adults need a whooping cough (pertussis) vaccine booster?
a. Anyone age 19 or older.
b. Only grandparents.
c. Only day care and health care workers.
8. The American Medical Association last year officially declared what condition a disease, a designation that could improve insurance coverage for treatment in 2014 and beyond?
c. Short stature.
9. Three Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2013 were diagnosed with MRSA, difficult-to-treat staph infections that can spread rapidly in health care settings, gyms and locker rooms. Why is it so tough to treat?
a. There are no outward signs of infection, so it's difficult to diagnose.
b. It is so rare that doctors aren't sure how to treat it.
c. It is resistant to most antibiotics.
10. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force now recommends an annual CT scan for certain people ages 55-80. Who are these people and what is the scan looking for?
a. Former and current smokers at high risk of lung cancer.
b. Diabetics at high risk for heart disease.
c. Alcoholics at high risk for liver disease.