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Health

Immunized: 8 mumps cases at New Jersey college

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Stevens Institute of Technology, Hoboken, NJ
The New Jersey Department of Health is investigating eight confirmed cases of mumps found in students at Stevens Institute of Technology.

The college in Hoboken says the students range in age from 18 to 21. All were fully vaccinated with two documented doses of mumps-containing vaccine.

The school says it has told faculty and staff members who are unsure of their immunization status to check with their health providers.

"At Stevens our top priority is the health and well-being of our students, faculty, and staff. Consistent with the procedures outlined by the NJDOH, all students with suspected mumps infection were isolated from others during the infectious phase of the illness and returned to their homes off campus," said Maggie Cunning, Director of the Student Health Services. "There have been no reports of newly symptomatic cases since the initial cases last week."

Stevens is encouraging anyone who may have recently visited the campus or had close contact with a student or staff member to contact their doctor if they are exhibiting mumps symptoms. These include swollen salivary glands, fever, headache, tiredness and loss of appetite.
Health

New MRSA superbug discovered in Brazil

superbug
© Wikimedia Commons
An international research team led by Cesar A. Arias, M.D., Ph.D., at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) has identified a new superbug that caused a bloodstream infection in a Brazilian patient. The report appeared in the April 17 issue of The New England Journal of Medicine.

The new superbug is part of a class of highly-resistant bacteria known as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus or MRSA, which is a major cause of hospital and community-associated infections. The superbug has also acquired high levels of resistance to vancomycin, the most common and least expensive antibiotic used to treat severe MRSA infections worldwide.

Most worrisome is that genomic analyses indicated that this novel vancomycin-resistant MRSA superbug belongs to a genetic lineage that is commonly found outside hospitals (designated community-associated MRSA), said Arias, the report's senior author and an associate professor of medicine, microbiology and molecular genetics at the UTHealth Medical School.
Family

Depression risk in elderly reduced by 30 percent with internet use

Loneliness can fuel depression in older adults, and experts estimate that as many as 10 million older Americans suffer from depression.

Now, a new study suggests information technology, specifically use of the Internet, among the elderly can reduce the chances of depression by more than 30 percent.

Researchers followed the lives of thousands of retired older Americans reviewing data collected by the Health and Retirement Survey - a survey collecting information from more than 22,000 older Americans every two years.

"The 30 percent reduction is a very strong effect," said Shelia Cotten, Ph.D., a Michigan State University professor of telecommunication, information studies and media who led the project.
Hearts

The benefits of high cholesterol

People with high cholesterol live the longest.

It is actually much better to have high than to have low cholesterol if you want to live to be very old.
This statement seems so incredible that it takes a long time to clear one´s brainwashed mind to fully understand its importance.

Yet the fact that people with high cholesterol live the longest emerges clearly from many scientific papers.

Consider the finding of Dr. Harlan Krumholz of the Department of Cardiovascular Medicine at Yale University, who reported in 1994 that old people with low cholesterol died twice as often from a heart attack as did old people with a high cholesterol.

Supporters of the cholesterol campaign consistently ignore his observation, or consider it as a rare exception, produced by chance among a huge number of studies finding the opposite.

But it is not an exception; there are now a large number of findings that contradict the lipid hypothesis.

To be more specific, most studies of old people have shown that high cholesterol is not a risk factor for coronary heart disease.

Comment: For more vital information, check out this video:

Dr. Jonny Bowden - The Great Cholesterol Myth

Wolf

A History of Holistic Dog Care

© Unknown
Juliette de Bairacli Levy and one of her home-bred and holistically raised Turkuman Afghans in the 1960s.
Readers of canine health books and magazines, including this one, can be forgiven for assuming that holistic or natural pet care is a recent breakthrough, something developed during the past two or three decades by a handful of revolutionary veterinarians and researchers.

Not so. Today's holistic pet care movement began over 70 years ago when Juliette de Bairacli Levy defined "natural rearing." Now in her 90s and living in Switzerland, Levy holds a place of honor in the history of natural pet care.
Stop

What fracking can do to your health

© Daniel Foster | Shutterstock | Tim McDonnell
If you know one thing about fracking, it might be that the wells have been linked to explosive tap water. Of course, a tendency toward combustion isn't the biggest problem with gas-infused water; it's what could happen to you when you drink it.

Although the natural gas industry is notoriously tight-lipped about the ingredients of the chemical cocktails that get pumped down into wells, by now it's widely known that the list often includes some pretty scary, dangerous stuff, including hydrochloric acid and ethylene glycol (a.k.a. antifreeze). It's also no secret that well sites release hazardous gases like methane and benzene (a carcinogen) into the atmosphere.
People 2

One-third of vegetative patients may be misdiagnosed and are in a minimally conscious state

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A new study published in the Lancet shows that as many as one-third of vegetative patients are misdiagnosed.

Researchers used brain-imaging techniques and found minimal consciousness in 13 of 42 patients it studied.

The study revealed that those patients with minimal consciousness have emotions and may feel pain.

This could have major legal and medical consequences, Maclean's reports.

Comment: A number of recent studies have confirmed that many patients who have lost signs of conscious awareness might still be able to learn and can respond to loved ones:
Conditional Consciousness: Patients in Vegetative States Can Learn, Predicting Recovery
Trace of Thought Is Found in 'Vegetative' Patient
Do patients in a vegetative state recognize loved ones?

Pills

Your psych meds can kill you sez 100,000-person study

© WND
Sleep aids are a more than $2 billion per year industry. Forecasts predict that global prescriptions for anti-anxiety medicines will reach $5.9 billion per year by 2017. But are these drugs safe? Studies show how easy it is to get hooked and a new study just published in the British Medical Journal shows that anti-anxiety and sleep drugs can kill you.

Using data from the prescription records of primary care doctors, the study compared 34,727 patients prescribed anxiolytic (anti-anxiety) or hypnotic (sleep) drugs to 69,418 people not prescribed these drugs. Over 90 percent of the prescribed drugs were benzodiazepines or Z-drugs, which you might know by brand names like Xanax, Valium, Lunesta, Ambien and many more.
Health

Twenty in Middle East infected with MERS corona virus; spread to Southeast Asia

© Press TV
The Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) seen under an electron microscope.
Deadly disease spreads to Southeast Asia via infected passenger flew from Saudi Arabia, and there are fears it could be a SARS-like event

A recent spate of infections from a frequently deadly Middle East virus is raising new worries about efforts to contain the illness, with infectious disease experts urging greater vigilance in combatting its spread.

More than 20 people, many of them health-care workers, have been reported infected with the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus in two distinct clusters - one in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates - likely involving human-to-human transmission since early last week.

The disease, originally identified in 2012 in the Middle East, has also for the first time spread to the Far East, which grappled with an outbreak of the related SARS virus last decade.

"The last two weeks have put us into uncharted territory," said Michael Osterholm, an infectious disease expert at the University of Minnesota.

Comment:
U.S. says deadly MERS (coronavirus) could affect national security
More MERS-CoV (coronavirus) deaths reported as clusters are profiled

Alarm Clock

Each one of us is a toxic superfund site

dna-molecule
© via Shutterstock
We are all lab rats in one giant, toxic, and deadly experiment.

The Environmental Defense Fund has released a new report, titled Toxics Across America, which looks at the billions of pounds of toxic and potentially deadly chemicals that are currently in the American marketplace.

The report looks at 120 chemicals that have been identified by state, federal and international officials as hazardous to our health.

It also looks at which of those chemicals are currently distributed in the U.S, what amounts they are being produced in, where they are being manufactured, and which companies are responsible for them.

The report's key findings include that at least 81 of the chemicals studied are produced in or imported to the U.S. each year in amounts of 1 million pounds or more.

Also, 14 of the chemicals studied come in at quantities of 1 billion pounds or more per year, including known carcinogens, or cancer-causing chemicals, like formaldehyde and benzene.

And, at least 90 of the chemicals that the EDF studied are commonly found in consumer and commercial products, including 8 used in children's products.

With billions of pounds of toxic chemicals being produced and used in the United States each year, you'd think that our government would have strict regulations in place to monitor those chemicals, and to keep Americans safe from them.
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