Walter McKenzie's assignment toward the end of the Cold War was to mop up after mishaps at a nuclear weapons factory. With a crew of other laborers from rural Georgia, he swabbed away leaks and spills inside the secret buildings, until one day his body became so contaminated with radiation that alarms at the factory went off as he passed.
"They couldn't scrub the radiation off my skin -- even after four showers," McKenzie, 52, recalled of his most terrifying day at the Savannah River nuclear weapons plant near Aiken, S.C. "They took my clothes, my watch, and even my ring, and sent me home in rubber slippers and a jumpsuit."
Later, when doctors discovered the first of 19 malignant tumors on his bladder, McKenzie followed the same torturous path as thousands of nuclear weapons workers with cancer: He filed a claim for federal compensation. It was denied.
Unable to access secret government files, or even some of his own personnel records, McKenzie could not sufficiently prove that he was exposed to something that might have made him sick. Nor can most of the 104,000 other workers, retirees, and family members who have sought help from a federal program intended to atone for decades of hazardous working conditions at scores of nuclear weapons facilities around the country.
Body builders and gym buffs, look away now. It appears that the opposite sex is much more interested in your face than your bulging biceps or elegant figure, especially if you're a man. At least that's the upshot of the first study to assess how much faces and bodies contribute to someone's overall attractiveness.
Twelve women and 12 men took part in a trial to assess the attractiveness of people in photographs, on a scale of 1 to 7. Some participants saw the entire person, some saw faces on their own, and some just bodies. Marianne Peters from the University of Western Australia in Crawley and colleagues assessed the face-only and body-only ratings to see how well they predicted the "entire person" ratings.
Most women 55 years and younger who have heart attacks don't recognize warning signs, researchers reported at the American Heart Association's 8th Scientific Forum on Quality of Care and Outcomes Research in Cardiovascular Disease and Stroke.
Women younger than 55 years represent less than 5 percent of all hospitalized heart disease patients, but because so many heart attacks occur in the United State each year, even this small percentage affects a large number of people. Young women with heart disease account for about 40,000 hospitalizations each year. Diseases of the heart in young women account for about 16,000 deaths annually, ranking it among the leading causes of death in this group, according to authors.
"The number of young women who die from coronary heart disease each year is roughly comparable to the number of women who die of breast cancer in this age group," said Judith Lichtman, Ph.D., lead author of the study. "Studies have shown that young women with heart disease are twice as likely to die in the hospital as similarly aged men. While these statistics are startling, relatively little is known about the clinical presentation, care or outcomes of young women with heart disease."
Contrary to belief, fluoridation is damaging teeth with little cavity reduction, according to a review of recent studies reported in Clinical Oral Investigations.(1)
Pizzo and colleagues reviewed English-language fluoridation studies published from January 2001 to June 2006 and write, "Several epidemiological studies conducted in fluoridated and non-fluoridated communities suggest that [fluoridation] may be unnecessary for caries prevention..."
They also report that fluoride-damaged teeth spiked upwards to 51% from the 10-12% found over 60 years ago in "optimally" fluoridated communities. Dental fluorosis is white-spotted, yellow, brown-stained and/or pitted teeth.
Fluoridation began in 1945 when dentists thought that ingested fluoride incorporated into children's developing tooth enamel to prevent cavities. However, Pizzo's group reports that fluoride ingestion confers little, if any, benefit and fails to reduce oral health disparities in low-income Americans.
Fluoride, added to the water supply of many cities and counties and sold by WalMart in its nursery water
, has a tendency to accumulate not only in developing teeth causing discoloration, and in bones making them brittle. The mineral is associated with cancer
and it also accumulates in the pineal gland
, an important hormone control center, where it wreaks considerable havoc. Paul Connett of Fluoride Action Network
comments on Jennifer Luke's research which was part of her PhD thesis and had just been published in Caries Research under the title: Fluoride Deposition in the Aged Human Pineal Gland
Hong Kong media were full of lurid accounts Monday of pigs staggering around with blood pouring from their bodies in Gaoyao and neighboring Yunfu, both in Guangdong Province. Apple, a daily newspaper here, said that up to 80 percent of the pigs had died in the area, that peasants were engaged in panic selling of ailing animals at deep discounts and that pig carcasses were floating down the river.
China acknowledged on Tuesday that two Chinese companies had illegally exported contaminated wheat gluten and rice protein for pet food blamed for a spate of animal deaths in the United States.
Brian Ross, Richard Esposito & R. Schwartz Report:ABC News
Fri, 11 May 2007 16:11 UTC
Rudolph Giuliani and his consulting company, Giuliani Partners, have served as key advisors for the last five years to the pharmaceutical company that pled guilty today to charges it misled doctors and patients about the addiction risks of the powerful narcotic painkiller OxyContin.
If it really is what's on the inside that counts, then a lot of thin people might be in trouble. Some doctors now think that the internal fat surrounding vital organs like the heart, liver or pancreas - invisible to the naked eye - could be as dangerous as the more obvious external fat that bulges underneath the skin.
"Being thin doesn't automatically mean you're not fat," said Dr. Jimmy Bell, a professor of molecular imaging at Imperial College, London. Since 1994, Bell and his team have scanned nearly 800 people with MRI machines to create "fat maps" showing where people store fat.
According to the data, people who maintain their weight through diet rather than exercise are likely to have major deposits of internal fat, even if they are otherwise slim. "The whole concept of being fat needs to be redefined," said Bell, whose research is funded by Britain's Medical Research Council.
Pioneer Hi-Bred's website boasts that their genetically modified (GM) Liberty Link corn survives doses of Liberty herbicide, which would normally kill corn. The reason, they say, is that the herbicide becomes "inactive in the corn plant." They fail to reveal, however, that after you eat the GM corn, some inactive herbicide may become reactivated inside your gut and cause a toxic reaction. In addition, a gene that was inserted into the corn might transfer into the DNA of your gut bacteria, producing long-term effects. These are just a couple of the many potential side-effects of GM crops that critics say put the public at risk.