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June 23rd, 2010
05:56 PM ET

Tests can screen for Parkinson's fall risk

By Georgiann Caruso
CNN Medical Associate Producer

New tests can help determine which Parkinson's disease patients are most at risk of falling, researchers report in Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

Fear of a fall can be overwhelming for people suffering from any neurological illness and the people who care for them. "'What we found is that people, even with early stage Parkinson's, have problems in postural stability and balance and that they do fall a lot," said study author Graham Kerr, Ph.D., of Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia. "We are actually finding much earlier signs of falling than has been recognized before. People in the later-stage of the disease are going to be at even greater risk."

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June 23rd, 2010
05:51 PM ET

California plans tough product safety limits

By Caleb Hellerman
CNN Senior Medical Producer

The state of California proposed new rules Monday that could force makers of consumer products to show they're not using harmful plastics or other ingredients, or face restrictions including a possible ban on selling those products. If the rules go into effect, they could have a ripple effect beyond California, since many companies  are unlikely to develop separate product lines, just for that state.

Maziar Movassaghi, acting director of California’s Department of Toxic Substances Control, says the ambitious plan seeks to totally reshape the way new products are developed. “We’ve had 30 years relying on [federal law], and it’s had limited success,” Movassaghi said. “The idea here is to go up the pipeline to the desk of individuals designing products, asking them to design products safe for use, and safe for the environment.”

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June 23rd, 2010
02:24 PM ET

Belly fat boosts diabetes risk for seniors

By Trisha Henry
CNN Medical Producer

It's a demonstrated fact that belly fat increases type 2 diabetes risk, and a new study confirms that's true for seniors too.

Gaining weight in your 50s and after age 65 can double your risk of diabetes later in life, according to a new University of Washington study.  Being obese and having excess body fat around the waist also contributes to the risk of getting diabetes.

More than 80 percent of people with type 2 diabetes are overweight, according to the National Institutes of Health.

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June 23rd, 2010
11:46 AM ET

Athletic trainers set infection-fighting guidelines

By Val Willingham
CNN Medical Producer

At any given time, one out of every three people in the U.S. suffers from a skin infection. Athletes are particularly vulnerable to contracting skin problems, because of the close quarters they work in–locker rooms–and their proximity to skin to skin contact and bodily secretions. Many of these infections, such as MRSA, can be serious, even life-threatening.

In an effort to provide information for avoiding, identifying and treating skin infections in athletes at all levels, a panel of experts unveiled guidelines to combat skin outbreaks in competitive sports.

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About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.

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