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Warm Water Danger: What to Know About Flesh-Eating Bacteria

If heading back into the water this summer has you concerned about flesh-eating bacteria, an expert offers some advice.

"Flesh-eating bacteria refers to an infection that spreads so rapidly that the skin and surrounding soft tissue starts to die," explained Dr. Stacey Rose, an assista...

Leftover Opioids After Surgery? Mailed Kits Double Rate of Proper Disposal

Could giving surgery patients ready-to-use mailed disposal kits for unused opioids lower the risk of abuse of the drugs?

Yes, claims a new study that found patients with unused opioid pain pills are much more likely to d...

After a Sweeping Review, CDC Looks to Rebuild Public Trust

In April, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention launched a new center to better forecast infectious disease outbreaks. It also underwent a month-long review to examine their current systems and inform future strategies.

Together, these announcements paint a picture of an agency at a crossroads, in the wake of enormous public scrutiny during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Most...

Some Health Conditions Greatly Raise Drowning Risks

MONDAY, May 9, 2022 (HealthDay News) -- With summer comes warm weather and swimming. But for some people, knowing how to swim may not be enough to ensure their safety.

That's because certain medical conditions bump up the risk for drowning in a big way, according to a new Canadian study.

About one in three adults and children over age 10 who drowned in Canada bet...

Your Take-Out Coffee Cup May Shed Trillions of Plastic 'Nanoparticles'

Maybe you ask the barista for cream with your coffee, and possibly sugar as well.

But new research shows that paper cup of joe you grab off the coffeehouse counter contains another ingredient, and it's one you might not care for — trillions of tiny plastic particles that leach into your hot java fr...

FDA Warns of Counterfeit Home COVID-19 Test Kits

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is warning Americans to watch out for phony at-home, over-the-counter COVID-19 tests that look a lot like the real things.

The counterfeit test kits may put you at risk of unknowingly spreading the disease or not seeking appropriate medical treatment, the agency cautions.

The phonies "are made to look like authorized tests so the users will thi...

Alabama Cases of Acute Hepatitis in Kids Show Link to Viruses: CDC

FRIDAY, April 29, 2022 (HealthDay News) -- The origins of a continuing outbreak of acute, potentially lethal hepatitis striking children in countries around the world has experts mystified. But a cluster of recent cases in Alabama all show ties to common viruses, according to a

  • Ernie Mundell HealthDay Reporter
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  • April 29, 2022
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  • New Omicron Subvariant Causing COVID-19 Spike in South Africa

    A new Omicron subvariant called BA.4 appears to be driving a sharp rise in COVID-19 cases in South Africa, health experts say.

    The number of daily cases reported by the country has shot up from just a few hundred a few weeks ago to just over 6,000, and the rate of positive tests has jumped from 4% in mid-April to 19% as of Thursday, according to the Associated Press.

    Increa...

    CDC Reports First American With New Bird Flu, Says Risk to Public Low

    FRIDAY, April 29, 2022 (HealthDay News) – The first U.S. case of bird flu in a human has been confirmed in Colorado, federal and state health officials reported Thursday.

    Still, the risk to the general public is low, the U.S Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stressed.

    The patient, a 40-year-old man who was working on a farm with infected poultry as part of a prison work-r...

    Behavior Differences Led to High COVID Death Rate in U.S. South: Study

    Thousands of COVID-19 deaths in the U.S. South could have been avoided if more people masked, social distanced, kept kids from school and made other behavioral changes to reduce the spread of the virus, researchers say.

    In other words, if they had acted more like folks up North.

    The study authors suggested that if the entire United States had followed the lead of the Northeast in t...

    Dangerous Germs Floating on Microplastics in Ocean Wind Up in Food, Water

    Land parasites that pose a risk to human and wildlife health can hitch rides on the millions of pounds of microplastics that float between oceans, a new study shows.

    "It's easy for people to dismiss plastic problems as something that doesn't matter for them, like, 'I'm not a turtle in the ocean; I won't c...

    Climate Change Will Make Pandemics Like COVID More Likely: Report

    Planet Earth is growing hotter, forcing different animal species to migrate to new areas and interact with other unfamiliar creatures at an increasing rate.

    That phenomenon could have dire consequences to human health, a new study says, raising the odds for new viral illnesses such

  • Dennis Thompson HealthDay Reporter
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  • April 28, 2022
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  • COVID Deaths Cluster in Poorly Vaccinated Communities

    COVID-19 death rates are significantly higher in U.S. counties that remain largely unvaccinated than in those where more people have gotten their shots, according to a new study.

    The findings add to evidence that vaccination ...

    U.S. Doctors on the Frontlines of Hepatitis Outbreak Striking Kids

    As health experts around the world try to understand why nearly 200 children in 12 countries have fallen seriously ill with severe hepatitis, doctors in Alabama are investigating nine such cases in that state.

    In each case, seemingly healthy kids ended up in hospital with acute liver inflammation.

    What's going on ...

    3 in 5 Americans Have Already Been Infected With COVID

    Thanks to the Omicron surge this past winter, 3 in every 5 Americans have now been infected with COVID-19, a new government report shows.

    Once Omicron surfaced as the predominant variant in this country, the highest infection rates were seen among children and teens, and the upward shift ...

    Experts Weigh in on CDC's New Forecasting Center for Infectious Diseases

    Back in December, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention held a detailed briefing to warn public health officials about an emerging COVID variant dubbed Omicron.

    Officials were incredibly specific, said Lori Tremmel Freeman, CEO of the National Association of County and City Health Officials, predicting that Omicron would enter the United States in four weeks and grow in inte...

    Firearms Now the Leading Cause of Death Among U.S. Kids, Teens

    Guns have surpassed road crashes as the leading cause of death among U.S. children and teens.

    Gun-related deaths rose 29% among 1- to 19-year-olds from 2019 to 2020, according to a new University of Michigan study. In all, there were more than 4,300 gun-related deaths — including suicides, homicides and accidents — in that age group in 2020.

    The rising rates demonstrate that the...

    U.S. Justice Department Appeals Ruling Striking Down Mask Mandate on Planes

    The Biden administration on Wednesday appealed a Florida ruling that struck down a federal mask mandate for planes, trains and other forms of public transportation.

    The announcement, made by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, came after the agency deemed the manda...

    FDA Warns 12 Companies About Skin Lightening Products

    Twelve companies have been issued warning letters about selling over-the-counter skin lightening products containing hydroquinone, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced Tuesday.

    The products are unapproved drugs that are not recognized as safe and effective, according to

  • By Robert Preidt HealthDay Reporter
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  • April 20, 2022
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  • CDC Launches Forecasting Center for Infectious Diseases

    A new forecasting center for infectious diseases was officially launched by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Tuesday.

    The goal of the Center for Forecasting and Outbreak Analytics is to act as a "National Weather Service" for infectious disease outbreaks, and to guide public health decisions during outbreaks. These can include developing vaccines, distributing antivi...

    Biden Administration Extends COVID Public Health Emergency for 90 Days

    America's public health emergency plan for COVID-19 will continue for at least another 90 days, the Biden administration announced Wednesday.

    Pushing the deadline to mid-July means that vulnerable Americans will keep getting the health care benefits the program offers.

    The emergency plan has b...

    J&J to Pay Over $300 Million in Pelvic Mesh Case

    Johnson & Johnson must pay $302 million to the state of California for deceptive marketing of pelvic mesh implants for women, an appeals court ruled on Monday.

    However, that is $42 million less than the $344 million originally assessed in 2020.

    Superior C...

    Philadelphia Becomes First U.S. City to Bring Back Indoor Mask Mandate

    Faced with rising COVID-19 case counts, Philadelphia has announced that it will reinstate an indoor mask mandate next week.

    City officials announced the change on Monday, as COVID-19 cases have climbed across the country due to the highly transmissible Omicron subvariant k...

    Is the CDC in Crisis? Former Agency Directors Debate Its Future

    A handful of former directors of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say they support a sweeping review of the agency that's been ordered up by CDC head Dr. Rochelle Walensky.

    Earlier this week, Walensky announced that she has asked outside experts to ...

    Walk the Roads at Your Own Risk as Pedestrian Deaths Keep Climbing

    America's roads are getting ever more dangerous for pedestrians, a new study finds.

    During the first six months of 2021, there was a 17% increase in pedestrian deaths in the United States — and that just continues the sharp increase seen over the previous 10 years, the researchers noted.<...

    Want a Healthier Neighborhood? Plant a Tree

    It turns out that trees might be good medicine.

    How so? New research shows that having lots of trees in your neighborhood could improve your health and lower your medical costs.

    “It’s time to stop looking at trees simply as an amenity and start recognizing the essential services they provide," said study author Ming Kuo, director of the Landscape and Human Health Lab the Univers...

    160,000 Lbs of Skippy Peanut Butter Recalled Due to Metal Fragments

    Check your cupboards for any SKIPPY peanut butter, since you may need to throw the jar out.

    Skippy Foods LLC has announced a recall of a limited number of jars of certain lines of its peanut butter products because they may contain a small fragment of stainless steel from a piece of manufacturing equipment.

    What products a...

    Had COVID? Getting Vaccine Boosts Resilience Even More, Studies Show

    If you've had COVID-19 but not your COVID shot, you may wonder if getting a vaccine now will really help you.

    It will, two new studies say.

    Researchers in Brazil and Sweden confirmed that COVID-19 vaccines provided significant additional protection for people who had alrea...

    No Threat From Common Chemicals in Most Face Masks: Study

    Reassuring new research finds that most face masks used by people during the pandemic don't have high levels of chemicals called per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS).

    The chemicals, which have been linked to numerous health harms, are used in many products to re...

    Biden to Lift Pandemic Rule Restricting Immigrants at Land Border

    THURSDAY, March 31, 2022 (HealthDay News ) -- An emergency health order that has curtailed immigration at U.S. land borders is expected to be lifted in late May.

    An announcement about rescinding the order -- which has been in place since the start of the pandemic and is called Title 42 -- is expected by the Biden...

    Health Experts Support End to Masks, Tests for Air Travel

    U.S. airline companies want an end to mask and COVID testing rules for air travel -- and many top infectious disease and public health experts agree with them.

    The chief executives of the country’s largest airlines asked President Joe Biden in a

  • Consumer news
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  • March 25, 2022
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  • Fauci: BA.2 Variant May Not Lead to Deadly Surge

    THURSDAY, March 24, 2022 (HealthDay News) -- The new Omicron subvariant, BA.2, is spreading across the United States and will soon take over as the major COVID variant, White House chief medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci said Tuesday.

    "Ultimately it will be the predominant variant ...

    Home COVID Tests Can Cause Harm If Not Stored Safely: FDA

    At-home COVID-19 tests are a key tool in containing the spread of the coronavirus. But a few safety precautions are in order to prevent serious injury, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration warns.

    The tests can cause harm if they're not used according to manufacturers' instructions, and they also need to be kept out of reach from children and pets, the FDA said.

    It said it has recei...

    High-Tech Drug Infusion Pumps in Hospitals Vulnerable to Damage, Hackers

    You've probably seen an infusion pump, even though the name might make it sound like a mysterious piece of medical technology.

    These devices govern the flow of IV medications and fluids into patients. They help deliver extra fluids to people in the emergency room, administer monoclonal antibodies to folks with COVID-19, and pump chemotherapy drugs to cancer patients.

    "If you're watc...

    'Lives Turned Upside Down': Ukraine's Refugees Struggle in Health Crisis

    Since Russia invaded Ukraine, millions have fled their homes and sought refuge wherever they could find it.

    Each individual story is intensely personal, but mental health experts warn of a refugee crisis that risks leaving a nation of 43 million with deep psychological scars for years to come.

    Marina, from Kyiv, now counts herself among the displaced.

    "Today, I would only lik...

    Could Russian Hackers Cripple U.S. Health Care Systems?

    FRIDAY, March 11, 2022 -- Sick people seeking lifesaving care in the United States could fall victim to a hidden part of Russia's war on Ukraine -- vicious cyberattacks aimed at sowing disruption, confusion and chaos as ground forces advance.

    Cybersecurity experts warn that attacks launched against Ukrainian institutions have the potential to spill over into America's health care systems,...

    Health Care Under Siege: Voices From the War in Ukraine

    As the war in Ukraine enters its third week, the scale of the devastation is placing the health of all Ukrainians — and the country's health care system itself — in peril.

    "It's mind-boggling," said James Elder, a spokesperson for UNICEF, who arrived in the western city of Lviv just two days after the Russian invasion began.

    Since then, "a million children who are refugees have ...

    More Hurricanes Mean Rising Death Toll for Americans

    From drowning to being struck by flying debris, the immediate dangers of hurricanes are well known, but these events also boost your risk of dying from a host of hidden diseases and conditions that occur in the storm's aftermath.

    The new research is concerning given the increase in t...

    U.S. Traffic Deaths Rise to Highest Level Since 2007

    Even though Americans drove less in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, close to 39,000 lives were lost on U.S. roadways in 2020 -- the highest death toll since 2007, the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports.

    Fatal collisions spiked almost 7% between 2019 and 2020, the safety administration revealed in its annual crash report.

    "The tragic loss o...

    Fitbit Recalls Over 1 Million Smartwatches Due to Burn Hazard

    Nearly 1 million Fitbit Ionic smartwatches sold in the United States have been recalled because they pose a burn hazard, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) said Wednesday.

    About 693,000 of the smartwatches were also sold in other countries.

    The lithium-ion battery in the Ionic smartwatch can overheat and cause burns, and consumers should immediately stop using them, ...

    What You Need to Know About the Infant Formula Recall

    If you're a parent using Similac, Alimentum or EleCare infant formulas, here's updated facts on the ongoing product recall.

    As the U.S. Food and Drug Administration investigates, Abbott Nutrition has recalled certain powdered formulas made at its Sturgis, Mich., facility. The products have been linked to bacterial infections in five babies. All had to be hospitalized and two died, possibl...

    J&J Finalizes $26 Billion Opioid Settlement

    Settlements totaling $26 billion have been finalized between drugmaker Johnson & Johnson plus three major pharmaceutical distributors and state and local governments, over the companies' role in America's opioid crisis.

    The

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  • February 28, 2022
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  • Rodent Infestation Spurs Product Recall by Family Dollar Stores

    A wide range of human food, pet food, medical devices and drug products have been recalled by Family Dollar Inc. due to the risk of salmonella and other hazards associated with a rodent infestation at a company warehouse in Arkansas.

    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration-regulated products were shipped from the Family...

    Fracking Wastewater Loaded With Toxic Chemicals, Study Shows

    Fracking has already raised the ire of environmentalists for its effects on the planet, but new research sends up another red flag: The wastewater produced by the complicated oil and gas drilling process is loaded with toxic and cancer-causing contaminants that threaten both people and wildlife.

    In fracking, water tha...

    Many Who Use Both Pot & Booze Say They've Driven Intoxicated

    Among U.S. drivers who use both alcohol and pot, over 40% say they've driven under the influence, a new study finds.

    "Alcohol and cannabis are two of the most common substances involved in impaired driving and motor vehicle crashes in the U.S.," said study author Priscila Dib Gonçalves. She is a postdoctoral fellow at the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health in New York Ci...

    Getting a COVID Vaccine Won't Affect Your Ability to Exercise

    Worried that a COVID-19 vaccine might hamper your workout? New research suggests you can hit the gym with minimal effects.

    In a study of 18 healthy people who received a COVID-19 vaccine, the participants were monitored while they did cycling workouts before and two to three weeks after being fully vaccinated.

    The researchers also conducted exercise tests in a cont...

    Omicron Hits Younger People, But Less Likely to Bring Long Hospital Stays

    Omicron COVID-19 patients are younger and have more breakthrough infections, a new study finds. But people infected with Omicron are also less likely to be hospitalized or need intensive respiratory support than those who'd gotten the earlier Alpha and Delta variants.

    The researchers examined data on patients at Houston Methodist hospital, where by the start of 2022,

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  • February 7, 2022
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  • Drills Key to Making Dental Appointments COVID-Safe

    The type of drill your dentist uses just might determine your chances of catching COVID-19 while in the chair.

    So claims new research that suggests dentists can significantly improve patient safety during the pandemic by switching the type of drill they use.

    British researchers used a harmless virus s...

    CDC Backs Full Approval of Moderna COVID Vaccine

    The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday gave its full approval to Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine for use in people 18 and older.

    This follows a similar move made Jan. 31 by its sister agency, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

    The vaccine, which had before been available for that age group only under emergency use authorization (EUA), will be marketed as Spik...

    Most Vaccine-Hesitant Health Care Workers Change Their Minds, Study Shows

    Most health care workers at a large U.S. hospital who initially refused COVID-19 vaccines eventually went and got their shots, new research reveals.

    "

  • Robert Preidt
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  • February 4, 2022
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