Testing It Up

Children of Dads Who Smoked Pre-Conception More Likely to Have Asthma: Study

Children are more likely to have asthma if their fathers smoked prior to conceiving them, a new German study has found. kid with asthma

The research looked at the smoking habits of 13,000 men and women who responded to survey questions, including whether they have smoked, when and for how long. They also indicated whether they stopped smoking before conceiving, according to a news release about the study, which found fathers who smoked prior to conception raised the chances of their unborn children having asthma. Fathers who had been smoking longer and fathers who began smoking before 15 were more likely to have babies born with asthma.

Mothers smoking prior to conception was not associated with increased asthma risk among the women in the survey.

It isn’t exactly clear how smoking before conception could cause asthma, but air pollution is certainly a factor, the authors said.

“This study is important as it is the first study looking at how a father’s smoking habit pre-conception can affect the respiratory health of his children,” said one of the study authors, Dr. Cecile Svanes, of the University of Bergen, Norway, in a statement. “Given these results, we can presume that exposure to any type of air pollution, from occupational exposures to chemical exposures, could also have an effect.”

Asthma is a condition that causes the airways to swell, leading to labored breathing and tightness around the lungs. At least 25 million Americans have asthma, and 7 million of them are children, according to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.


September 8, 2014 at 12:44 pm Comments (0)

Back to School Went Badly for Students who Ended up with Mysterious Illness

Going back to school sent hundreds of children to hospitals throughout the American Midwest for an unconfirmed respiratory illness that gave sufferers intense flu-like symptoms. school closings

Parents are being warned that back to school time is going to mean viruses have a field day with returning students, as the children are exposed to ailments with so many of them congregating in the same place after being separated for the past few months.

The Enterovirus EV-D68 is most likely the cause of the outbreak and has common symptoms. The virus is sending 30 children to the hospital a day and 15% of them are being placed into intensive care units. September is peak season for enteroviruses, which have more than 100 different strands and are typically what causes a summer cold. The virus was first identified in 1962, however it’s fairly rare until now. Between 1987 and 2005, only 26 cases were reported worldwide, but in the past month 19 cases have been confirmed in Kansas City alone.

“It’s worse in terms of scope of critically ill children who require intensive care. I would call it unprecedented,” Mary Anne Jackson, division director for infectious diseases at Kansas City’s Children’s Mercy Hospital, said. “I’ve practiced for 30 years in pediatrics, and I’ve never seen anything quite like this.”

The influx of 475 children forced the facility to call in help from other health care providers.

September 8, 2014 at 12:28 pm Comments (0)

Prescription Drug Disposal Program Expanded

The Drug Enforcement Administration has expanded its prescription drug disposal program by allowing the medication to be dropped off at hospitals, pharmacies, clinics and other authorized drop-off sites in an effort aimed at curbing rising drug addiction and abuse.prescription drug disposal

Long-term care facilities will be able to collect controlled substances turned in by residents. Prescription drug users also can mail unused medications to collectors using pre-paid packages, a statement from the DEA said.

“I am committed to ending the national epidemic that has already stolen too many lives and torn apart too many families,” Attorney General Eric Holder.

A 2013 survey showed that about 6.5 million Americans 12 and older were non-medical users of prescription drugs, the statement said. In 2011, more than half of the 41,300 unintentional U.S. drug overdose deaths involved prescription drugs. Opioid pain relievers caused about 17,000 of those deaths.

Sept. 27 is National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. For more information about the day and what you can do to promote it in your community, click here.

September 8, 2014 at 12:03 pm Comments (0)

Experimental Ebola Vaccine Shows Promise

A GlaxoSmithKline-produced Ebola vaccine has shown to be effective in lab monkeys for at least five weeks and extends protection to 10 months with a booster that contains an additional vaccine, a recently released study has indicated. alcoholism vaccine

Johnson & Johnson and NewLink Genetics are also among the firms developing an Ebola vaccine and treatments as the worst known outbreak of the virus ravages West Africa. Thus far, it has killed more than 2,000 people.

The results of the new study, published in Nature Medicine, suggest that a GSK vaccine now being tested on healthy volunteers would protect against Ebola infection in the short term, but may have to be augmented for long-term protection.
The study is the first to report that a vaccine regimen produced “durable immunity” against Ebola, protecting four out of four monkeys for 10 months.

The vaccine uses a chimp adenovirus, a version of Ebola closely related to a human version, that causes upper respiratory tract infections, into which scientists spliced an Ebola gene.

The adenovirus infects cells in a vaccinated animal, causing them to take up the gene and produce Ebola proteins, which primes the immune system to attack the proteins of Ebola viruses when an infection occurs.

The vaccine in the study is similar to competing vaccines being developed by GSK, which began human safety trials last week, and by J&J, which aims to start safety trials in early 2015.

September 8, 2014 at 8:22 am Comments (0)

Joan Rivers Dies Days After Medically-Induced Coma Following Throat Surgery

Veteran comedian Joan Rivers died on the afternoon of September 5, 2014 (Thursday) following a medically-induced coma after suffering from cardiac arrest during a throat surgery. She was hooked on life support at the Mount Sinai hospital in Manhattan after she was found not breathing during the procedure at the Yorkville Endoscopy clinic.

joan rivers deathMelissa Rivers, daughter of the influential TV host, released a statement to the press: “It is with great sadness that I announce the death of my mother. She passed peacefully at 1:17pm surrounded by family and close friends. My son and I would like to thank the doctors, nurses, and staff of Mount Sinai Hospital for the amazing care they provided for my mother. Cooper and I have found ourselves humbled by the outpouring of love, support, and prayers we have received from around the world. They have been heard and appreciated. My mother’s greatest joy in life was to make people laugh. Although that is difficult to do right now, I know her final wish would be that we return to laughing soon.”

The 81-year-old TV fixture underwent a minor surgery at the Yorkville Endoscopy clinic, where she suffered respiratory and cardiac arrest. Rivers was rushed to Mount Sinai Hospital where she was placed in a medically-induced coma under life support until her demise last Thursday.

Details about her death have not been released as of this time, but according to a report from CNN, the New York medical examiner’s office will launch an investigation regarding the incident. In the meantime, the New York State Department of Health is already conducting its own investigation on the clinic.

Rivers is best known for her acid-tongued commentaries on current events, as well as her tongue-in-cheek barks on fashion trends through her show “Fashion Police”.

September 4, 2014 at 10:58 pm Comments (0)

Study: Type 2 Diabetes Aggravated By Obesity

A comprehensive survey covering more than three decades of data revealed that the rising number of cases of diabetes may be attributed to obesity, among other factors.

obesityStudy author Andy Menke conducted the study that looked into national surveys than ran between 1976 and 2010, and monitored the trending factors behind changes in Type 2 diabetes rates in the U.S. “Overweight and obesity explained most of the increase in the prevalence of diabetes in the U.S. during this time period,” said Menke in a news release.

The study, however, is quick to clear out that the results do not show a cause-and-effect relationship between being overweight and increasing the risk of getting diabetes. “It’s not entirely clear why some people who have maintained a healthy weight their entire lives develop type 2 diabetes while other people who are obese never develop it,” Menke expressed.

Based on the duration of the data involved in the study, diabetes cases increased from 5 percent to above 11 percent in males, and also shot up from 6 percent to almost 9 percent for females. Obesity as a risk factor for diabetes resulted to only half of the increase in men as opposed to women. “Changes over time in the distribution of age, race and ethnicity, and obesity in the population explained all of the increase in women but only half of the increase in men,” the study author added.

Type 2 diabetes continues to be one of the most prevalent diseases in the U.S., with close to 30 million Americans diagnosed with the disease. This is the reason why diabetes drug tests have become popular.

September 3, 2014 at 3:11 am Comments (0)

September is Responsible Dog Ownership Month!

Chinese_Chongging_Dog1September is Responsible Dog Ownership Month. Responsible dog ownership, of course, means taking care of your pooch so it can live a long, happy and healthy life.

Part of responsible dog ownership means regularly checking your dog’s health to ensure it is in tip top shape. Regular veterinarian visits are required, but keeping an eye on your dog’s health in between visits is equally important.

Dogs can be susceptible to many health problems, particularly as they get older. But, with the help of urinary tract infection testing kits, instant diabetes detection kits and instant kidney failure testing kits, you can monitor your canine’s health to save them from unnecessary pain and suffering.

If you have a mixed breed dog and you don’t know what breeds it consists of, you can use a dog breed DNA saliva test kit to find out. It’s important to know the various breeds of your mixed breed dog because certain breeds are more susceptible to certain health conditions. Knowing the breeds will help you know what to be on the lookout for when it comes to your dog’s health.

So, if you have a dog, do it proud by being extra vigilant this month. Be a responsible dog owner!

September 1, 2014 at 8:46 am Comments (0)

Sarah Silverman Shows Up at Emmys with Marijuana Vaporizer

The telecast for the Primetime Emmy Awards this year has already come to a close, but comedian and host Sarah Silverman isn’t out of the spotlight just yet.

sarah silvermanEveryone who tuned in to the pre-awards red carpet show saw the stand-up comedian being interviewed by E! host Giuliana Rancic about the contents of her purse. Silverman then proceeded to empty out her clutch to expose a marijuana vaporizer pen. “This is my pot. It’s liquid pot,” Silverman said to Rancic.

Since then, the topic burned up social networking sites to discuss the controversial marijuana device. Vape pens have been in existence for quite some time now, and have become the go-to tool for people who want to use marijuana without taking it through traditional procedures. Vaporizers have been used by people who have a prescription for medical marijuana, based on some reports that vape pens lessen the adverse effects of the other compounds in marijuana as compared to simply smoking it.

Silverman admits to have a legal prescription of medical marijuana, and she chose to administer the drug through a vaporizer pen. In fact, she’s not afraid of using her Twitter account to declare her use of medical marijuana.


August 29, 2014 at 5:17 am Comments (0)

WHO Calls For E-Cigarette Ban For Indoor Use

A little over a week after news broke of the hazards of e-cigarettes on airplane flights, the World Health Organization (WHO) is now calling for banning indoor use of electronic cigarettes.

electronic cigarettesAccording to a news story by AP as published on HealthDay, the United Nations health arm recommends regulation of these vapor-based cigarettes, on the basis that vaping has not yet been confirmed to be safe when people are exposed to the fumes, much like secondhand smoke in regular tobacco cigarettes. In addition, the WHO is also pushing for its member nations to stop the sale of these electronic variants to minors.

The WHO recommendations come a day after the American Heart Association (AHA) issued a similar warning to the public. According to AHA, e-cigarettes should also be imposed with the same restrictions as tobacco variants. “Recent studies raise concerns that e-cigarettes may be a gateway to traditional tobacco products for the nation’s youth, and could renormalize smoking in our society,” said AHA CEO Nancy Brown.

To this day, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has yet to issue a statement regarding its stand on electronic cigarettes. While regulations and laws are still pending, the e-cigarette business continues to profit from the emerging market, which has already gained roughly $3 billion around the world as reported by the WHO.

August 29, 2014 at 12:21 am Comments (0)

Prescription Drug Fatalities Drop In Medical Marijuana States

Is medical marijuana the key to addressing prescription drug abuse deaths? A study conducted by a professor from Baltimore’s Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health seems to conclude so.

prescription drug overdoseDr. Colleen L. Barry, an associate professor in the university’s Department of Health Policy and Management, released a team study published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine that links lower deaths due to prescription drug abuse in states that legalize medical marijuana. “As our awareness of the addiction and overdose risks associated with use of opioid painkillers such as Oxycontin and Vicodin grows, individuals with chronic pain and their medical providers may be opting to treat pain entirely or in part with medical marijuana, in states where this is legal,” Barry said in a news item.

The study revealed that states where medical pot has been legalized posted a 25 percent lower mortality rate due to prescription medication overdose. The research used data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) between the years 1999 and 2010, which showed that the rate of fatalities arising from opioid painkiller abuse shot up within that particular time frame.

Study lead author Dr. Marcus Bachhuber from the University of Pennsylvania shared the details of the research results. “In absolute terms, states with a medical marijuana law had about 1,700 fewer opioid painkiller overdose deaths in 2010 than would be expected based on trends before the laws were passed.”

Meanwhile, the study’s proponents urged for more studies related to this topic, noting that there is a need to determine the long-term effects of medical marijuana in “both overdose deaths and the health trajectories of individuals suffering from chronic pain.”

August 27, 2014 at 9:44 pm Comment (1)

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