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DEAR DR. ROACH: My very healthy husband collapsed and died on the way to the hospital. They worked on him for a long time but could not revive him. They didn't do an autopsy, and they declared his death as "atherosclerotic vascular disease." He was 79 years old and had no health problems. He came into the house and said that something was in his throat and he couldn't swallow. He tried to cough it up, but nothing came up. He then collapsed. He had no pain. I am still puzzled by that symptom of a heart attack. Have you ever heard of that? I am really curious and still in shock. I hope you can explain. — T.S.

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DEAR DR. ROACH: I am a man in my late 50s. I now am told to sleep on my right side and not my left side, because it's better for the heart. However, my sinuses seem to open up and it's easier to breathe lying on my left side. What, if anything, will happen if I sleep on my left side? Can it damage the heart permanently or lead to an early death? — M.N.

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DEAR DR. ROACH: I am a 75-year-old man in excellent overall health. Routine bloodwork recently showed an elevated potassium level of 5.6. For the most part, I follow a vegetarian diet, which includes a number of very healthy foods that also happen to be high in potassium. I exercise regularly. Two years ago, my level was 4.9. My cardiologist stopped my metoprolol, as he said that could have pushed up the potassium, and he felt that based on my routine tests it was safe to stop it. I also stopped the 500-mg turmeric supplement I was taking, as a precaution. I take no other drugs.

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If you watch the news, you might have seen there's a proposal underway that would allow states to import prescription drugs from Canada, where costs are lower. Drugs are cheaper in other countries because their governments control the prices.

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DEAR DR. ROACH: My question is about symptoms for women's heart attacks. I have always heard that symptoms for women can be much different from men's. Instead of the chest-clutching, sharp pain that men can have, I have read that women's symptoms can be any of these: heartburn or indigestion; pain in the jaw, neck, shoulders, back, one or both arms; fatigue and troubled sleep; dizziness and nausea; or extreme anxiety. Are you KIDDING me? I am a healthy, active 63-year-old woman. I have had all of these symptoms at one time or another. If I acted every time I had one of these symptoms, I would be at the doctor's office every day. How is one to know which symptoms to take seriously and act on immediately, and which to wait a few days to see if it is temporary? — J.

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DEAR DR. ROACH: Something's been puzzling me. I'm a 71-year-old female, and my cholesterol tends to hover around the 240 mark. However, I had to give up bread for several weeks due to oral surgery, and my next blood test results showed my cholesterol had plummeted 40 points, to 206. (I actually had them double-check, since I thought they had given me someone else's report!) I asked my doctor about this, but he didn't know of any reason for it to happen. My husband thinks it may have something to do with the yeast. Do you have any ideas? — R.R.

NATIONAL HEALTH NEWS

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A Florida judge denied custody to the parents of a 4-year-old boy with leukemia after their struggle with the state over giving him chemotherapy. Noah McAdams was removed from his parents, Taylor Bland and Joshua McAdams, when they skipped a chemotherapy session and left the state in pursuit…