home
RSS
Gum disease doesn't lead to heart attack or stroke
April 19th, 2012
07:23 PM ET

Gum disease doesn't lead to heart attack or stroke

Despite what doctors have been telling patients for the past few years, having gum disease does not make us more likely to have a heart attack or stroke, according to the American Heart Association. Treating gum disease does not appear to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease either.

Cardiologists, dentists, and infectious disease specialists reviewed more than 500 studies addressing the connection between the two diseases. The results were published Wednesday in a statement by the AHA.

The connection was made years ago when experts noticed that people with gum disease tended to have more heart attacks or strokes than people in better dental health. The thinking was that the bacteria causing the infection in the gums got into the blood stream and traveled to the fatty plaques in blood vessels where they attached and helped form blood clots which can lead to a heart attack or stroke.
FULL POST


FDA warns of fentanyl patch dangers to children
April 19th, 2012
06:50 PM ET

FDA warns of fentanyl patch dangers to children

Children explore their worlds by touching and tasting items within their reach. That can cause deadly results when the object of their curiosity contains a potentially lethal drug like pain relieving fentanyl.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a consumer advisory Thursday, reminding parents, caregivers, and medical personnel of the deadly consequences posed to children from accidental contact with, or ingestion of fentanyl patches, which are marketed under the brand name Duragesic.

The patches are prescribed for patients experiencing constant pain - for example, cancer patients. They contain a strong synthetic opiate that relieves pain for three days. But when a child swallows a patch or applies it to his or her skin, the drug can slow breathing and result in death.

An advisory on the FDA website  says "Young children are at particular risk of accidental exposure to fentanyl patches. Their mobility and curiosity provide opportunities for them to find lost patches, take improperly discarded patches from the trash, or find improperly stored patches, all of which may result in patches being placed in their mouths or sticking to their skin.  Additionally, young children are at risk of exposure when being held by someone wearing a partially detached patch which can then transfer to the child. "

According to the FDA warning, there have been 26 incidents of accidental fentanyl exposure since 1997, resulting in ten deaths and 12 cases requiring hospitalization. Most of the cases involved children.

“This reinforces the need to talk to patients and their families," says Douglas Throckmorton, M.D., deputy director of FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, in a written statement, "to make sure that these patches are stored, used and disposed of carefully.”


26% had health insurance gap in 2011, study finds
April 19th, 2012
06:23 PM ET

26% had health insurance gap in 2011, study finds

The fate of health care reform legislation is still up in the air, resting with the U.S. Supreme Court, which is expected to rule on the law's constitutionality in late June.

But today's news about health insurance isn't about the justices; it's about the people who had gaps in coverage in 2011.

The Commonwealth Fund Health Insurance Tracking Survey of U.S. Adults found that 26% of Americans had a hole in their health insurance coverage in 2011. That would equate to about 48 million people who were uninsured at some point during the year, the Commonwealth Fund said.

FULL POST


Measles cases reached 15-year high in 2011
April 19th, 2012
03:30 PM ET

Measles cases reached 15-year high in 2011

Back in 2000 measles was eliminated from the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  But now a  new CDC study tells us there were 17 outbreaks and 222 cases of the highly infectious disease reported in 2011.

An outbreak is defined as three or more cases linked by time or location.  The average age of those infected was 14 and most were infected while traveling abroad.  Seventy patients were hospitalized, but there were no deaths reported.

"Last year many U.S. travelers brought back more than they bargained for," said Dr. Ann Schuchat, director, CDC's Office of Infectious Diseases, National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Disease. "This is the most reported number of cases of the measles in 15 years."

Measles was wiped out in the U.S. for more than a decade, thanks in large part to the MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccine.  Cases here are sporadic and although the numbers reported seem relatively small, the CDC says vaccination is still key to maintaining elimination in the U.S.

"It's really important for families to know that measles are still a threat," Schuchat said. "In some places it's easy to exempt from a vaccine.  We believe that for many parents a reason to decline a vaccine is they don't think the disease exist, they believe it's gone ... No one wants their child to die from measles in 2012."

FULL POST


April 19th, 2012
02:32 PM ET

Feeding tube diet raises eyebrows

Brides often feel the pressure of looking their best on their wedding day, purchasing a dress with sometimes significantly lower wedding weight in mind. While some try to lose weight the healthy way focusing on long-term weight management, eating right and exercise, others attempt crash diets sometimes going to extreme measures to shed those extra pounds.

One such bride, Jessica Schnaider told ABC and The New York Times that she wanted to lose 10 pounds before her big day.  She went to Dr. Oliver Di Pietro in Miami Beach, Florida.  In a release to CNN, Di Pietro says he's brought the K-E diet to the United States from Italy.  The diet involves inserting a feeding tube into a patient's nose that runs to the stomach for a period of 10 days.

FULL POST


Good vibrations: Sex toys go mainstream
April 19th, 2012
01:09 PM ET

Good vibrations: Sex toys go mainstream

Ian Kerner, a sexuality counselor and New York Times best-selling author, blogs about sex weekly on The Chart. Read more from him on his website, GoodInBed.

From Victorian times - when vibrators were invented to treat “female hysteria" - to "Sex and the City" times - when Charlotte discovered The Rabbit - generations of women have used vibrators to go from no-go to the Big O.

But today’s sex toys are more innovative than ever and not just for women.

Brands like Trojan now sell their line of vibrators alongside condoms at your local drugstore. And sex shops report being inundated by shoppers who have read the erotic novel “50 Shades of Grey” and now want to spice things up in their own bedrooms.

In the past decade, vibrator use has become a lot less taboo among women, and there has been an explosion of new toy designs for the discerning lady looking to engage in self-pleasuring. Yet for the most part, that same variety of product has not existed for men.

Yet slowly but surely toy designers are acknowledging the fact that vibrators and the like don’t have to be relegated to solo use; for adventurous and open-minded couples, they can be invaluable tools for reigniting intimacy, and for achieving even more pleasurable sex.
FULL POST

Post by:
Filed under: Sex

Speed, Ecstasy tied to teen depression
April 19th, 2012
07:35 AM ET

Speed, Ecstasy tied to teen depression

The short-lived high teenagers get from using amphetamines or the club drug MDMA - better known as Ecstasy - could lead to longer-lasting depression later on, a new study suggests.

Researchers in Canada interviewed 3,880 teenagers from low-income neighborhoods in Québec. Compared to their peers who used neither drug, teens who reported taking MDMA or amphetamines at least once in the tenth grade had 70% and 60% higher odds, respectively, of experiencing depression symptoms in the eleventh grade.

Using both drugs nearly doubled the odds of depression.
FULL POST


Advertisement
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.

Advertisement
Advertisement