Articles by Jim Atkinson

The Race of His Life

Jan 20, 2013 By Jim Atkinson

When a world-class athlete like Austin’s Lance Armstrong gets cancer, it’s a shock—for him, and for every man who has ever considered himself invincible.


Jan 20, 2013 By Jim Atkinson

More than a decade ago I wrote about the virtues of the drinking life and the comforts of what I called a “bar bar.” Then I hit rock bottom. It’s been eight years now since I took my last drink—and I’m finally ready to tell the rest of the story.

State of the Heart

Jan 20, 2013 By Jim Atkinson

Bypass surgery with almost no pain, and you get to go home three days later? Don’t have a coronary: It’s happening right now, in Texas.

Pick Your Poison

Mar 1, 2005 By Jim Atkinson

It turns out that the toxin that’s changed a million faces has a social conscience after all. The wonders of Botox, a concentrated form of botulinum toxin, have been touted ad nauseam: By paralyzing facial muscles, it was smoothing out Hollywood’s wrinkles long before the FDA approved it, in 2002.

State of Emergency

Sep 30, 2004 By Jim Atkinson

As more and more children fall off the health-insurance rolls, chaos reigns at Children's Medical Center Dallas, which used to have the best pediatric ER in Texas, and the quality of care for everyone suffers.

The Pedophile Next Door

Mar 1, 2004 By Jim Atkinson

How do you know when a child molester is cured? Are you willing to take his word for it? David Wayne Jones hopes so. Thirteen years ago he was convicted of preying on little boys at the East Dallas YMCA, but he could soon be out of jail and back on the street. Your street.

Bad Air Days

Jul 31, 2003 By Jim Atkinson

Historically, Southeast Texas and cancer have gone together like, well, pollution and disease. I wish I could say things were different today.

Mold Age

Apr 1, 2003 By Jim Atkinson

Are the toxic fungi that launched a thousand lawsuits really as dangerous as everyone says? Don't believe the hype.

Wrongful Life?

Dec 1, 2002 By Jim Atkinson

A Houston couple says a hospital is responsible for their daughter's severe disabilities. Should Texas' highest court agree, the case will change health care as we know it.

Perilously Plump

Apr 1, 2002 By Jim Atkinson

Texans love to say that everything’s bigger here, but when it comes to the waistlines in one in four of our largest cities, that’s nothing to brag about.


Feb 1, 2002 By Jim Atkinson

If you think your flulike symptoms could be anthrax, don't call your HMO—call your doctor. And other advice the television "experts" should have told you.

Battle Plan

Jun 30, 2001 By Jim Atkinson

A Dallas epidemiologist has made it his mission to learn the truth about Gulf War Syndrome, even if he has to fight the government.

Killer Bugs

May 31, 2001 By Jim Atkinson

I learned a shocking lesson when I visited San Antonio's "hot lab," where some of the world's deadliest microbes are studied. The germs are winning.