Is health simply the absence of illness? What exactly does it mean to be “healthy”? These questions came to me as I helped prepare this issue, and not just because it features our annual Top Doctors list. January is naturally a time for reflection and anticipation, from wishes for a happy and healthy new year to fleeting thoughts of getting in shape. (Note to self: I already have a shape.)
The bulk of the U.S. healthcare system remains focused on treating illness and disease, but most of us know medical professionals who have embraced a more proactive approach. Cincinnati is fortunate to be home to hospitals and medical groups doing groundbreaking research into both prevention and treatment, as evidenced in our Top Doctors stories. You’ll read about DNA testing that can predict a person’s reaction to certain prescription drugs and research into long-haul COVID, as well as safer and more effective treatments for heart defects, brain cancer, spinal deformity, and uterine fibroids.
Looking through the list of almost 900 area doctors recommended by their peers, you’ll also find professionals focused on preventing and treating addiction, pain, sleep issues, and reproduction and infertility—along with specialists for every imaginable body part and condition. It’s clear that care has become holistic and health is more than the sum of your cholesterol and blood pressure numbers.
Elsewhere in this issue, I notice other touchpoints around the theme of health. Our longform story about Cincinnati’s water supply (“The River Runs Through Us”) explains the ongoing battle to transform the muddy, polluted Ohio River into safe, clean drinking water. “The Wow Factory” delves into how hospitals and office spaces use art to boost spirits. And Molly Wellmann graces our Style Counsel feature with positive thinking and awesome accessories.
A successful healthcare regimen involves a top doctor, sure, but let’s not forget that it can—and maybe should—also include a clean environment, an appreciation for beauty, and a fun pair of shoes.