Preview Mode Links will not work in preview mode

Howard G. Smith, M.D. is a former radio medical editor and talk show host in the Boston Metro area.  His "Medical Minute" of health and wellness news and commentary was a regular weekday feature on WBZ-AM, WRKO-AM, and WMRE-AM.   His popular two-way talk show, Dr. Howard Smith OnCall, was regularly heard Sunday morning and middays on WBZ.

More recently, Dr. Smith has adopted the 21st century technology of audio and video podcasting as conduits for the short health and wellness reports, HEALTH NEWS YOU SHOULD USE.  Many of these have video versions, and they may be found on his YouTube page:

Trained at Harvard Medical School and a long-time faculty member at Boston Children’s Hospital, he practiced Pediatric Otolaryngology for 40 years in Boston, Southern California, and in central Connecticut.

If you have questions or suggestions about this content, please email the doctor at or leave him a message at 516-778-8864.  His website is:

Please note that the news, views, commentary, and opinions that Dr. Smith provides are for informational purposes only.  Any changes that you or members of your family contemplate making to lifestyle, diet, medications, or medical therapy should always be discussed beforehand with personal physicians who have been supervising your care.

Mar 1, 2019


There is an acute shortage of hearts for transplant, but the University of Pennsylvania’s transplant team is increasing the supply with a treatment that allows use of organs from donors infected with the Hepatitis C virus.  

The clinicians treated a group of 10 heart transplant patients who developed positive tests for hepatitis C with a 3 month course of Zepatier, a two drug combo medication.  One of the patients suffered an unrelated rejection crisis, but the other 9 were cured of their hepatitis C and demonstrated excellent cardiac function.

As we live longer, more of use suffer from tired hearts, better known as congestive heart failure.  Last year, more than 3000 hearts were transplanted, but more than double that number were left behind on the waiting list.  Innovative programs like Penn’s and the future use of genetically transformed pig hearts may hopefully shorten and eventually eliminate that list.

One more thing.  In this day of astronomically high drug prices and pharmaceutical company greed, Zepatier by Merck is one of the least expensive anti-hepatitis C drugs.  I’ll say no more but I do give Merck some applause.

#heart #transplantation #hearttransplant #hepatitisC #Zepatier #Merck #healthnews

Rhondalyn C. McLean, Peter P. Reese, Michael Acker, Pavan Atluri, Christian Bermudez, Lee Goldberg, Peter L. Abt, Emily A. Blumberg, Vivianna M. Van Deerlin, K. Rajender Reddy, Roy D. Bloom, Richard Hasz, Lawrence Suplee, Anna Sicilia, Ashley Woodards, Muhammad Nauman Zahid, Katharine J. Bar, Paige Porrett, Matthew Levine, Nicole Hornsby, Caren Gentile, Jennifer Smith, David S. Goldberg. Transplanting hepatitis C virus-infected hearts into uninfected recipients: A single-arm trial. American Journal of Transplantation, 2019; DOI: 10.1111/ajt.15311