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Sat, 10 Dec 2022
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Update: Cold medicines offer little or no relief

Over-the-counter cough and cold medicines have recently come under fire as risky - even potentially fatal - for children under the age of 2. Now, a review of existing research suggests there is little evidence that these medications even work for either children or adults.

Bulb

An open door for manipulation: The mind and body together lean toward 'truthiness'

'Truthiness,' according to television satirist Stephen Colbert, represents the human preference to follow our intuition despite the presence of facts or evidence. For example, the more ambiguous an answer to a question, the more likely an individual will believe it is truthful.

At least that is what psychologists Rick Dale of the University of Memphis, Michael Spivey of Cornell University and the late Chris McKinstry found when they asked college students questions that ranged in levels of vagueness and tracked their corresponding arm movements to clicking 'yes' or 'no' on a computer screen.

Specifically, questions such as "is murder sometimes justifiable?" are considered ambiguous and could cause the sensation of being 'pulled' in both directions at once; however, questions like "can a kangaroo walk backwards?" have a high probability of 'no' responding.

People

Don't worry, be (moderately) happy, research suggests

Could the pursuit of happiness go too far" Most self-help books on the subject offer tips on how to maximize one's bliss, but a new study suggests that moderate happiness may be preferable to full-fledged elation.

The researchers, from the University of Virginia, the University of Illinois and Michigan State University, looked at data from the World Values Survey, a large-scale analysis of economic, social, political and religious influences around the world. They also analyzed the behaviors and attitudes of 193 undergraduate students at Illinois.

Their findings, which appear in the December 2007 Perspectives on Psychological Science, challenge the common assumption that all measures of well-being go up as happiness increases. While many indicators of success and well-being do correspond to higher levels of happiness, the researchers report, those at the uppermost end of the happiness scale (people who report that they are 10s on a 10-point life satisfaction score) are in some measures worse off than their slightly less elated counterparts.

X

24 clinical trial deaths in the Netherlands

Hospital says some might have lived

It's been revealed that at least 24 people have died after taking part in research into a new treatment for pancreatitis being run at major Dutch hospitals. The University Medical Centre in Utrecht, which spearheaded the trials, announced today that the patients died between 2004 and 2007 during the research. Tests were carried out on a total of 296 patients in 15 hospitals across the country.

Health

Incubator fire badly burns Minnesota newborn

Oxygen ignited inside a special hood worn by a prematurely born infant in a hospital, burning the boy's head and face and leaving him in critical condition.

The newborn was lying in an open-topped bassinet under a warmer at Mercy Hospital in suburban Coon Rapids on Tuesday when the accident happened, Allina Hospital and Clinics said in a statement.

The baby was wearing an oxygen hood, a device that fits over the face to supply additional oxygen, when something caused the gas to ignite, the statement read.

Health

Hypertension Patient's Gene Type Influences Response To Medication

If you suffer from high blood pressure (hypertension) your genotype may influence how well you respond to certain medications, according to an article in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), January 23rd issue.

Of the 71 million Americans who are known to suffer from at least one type of CVD (cardiovascular disease), at least 65 million have high blood pressure. Only about two-thirds of all hypertension patients have their blood pressure controlled successfully with current treatments, the authors explain. Even though treatments have improved in recent years, a sizeable number of patients are not being treated effectively. Using treatment tailored to a CVD patient's particular genotype has been an area of focus in recent years - however, there have been no effective therapeutic choices for the clinical setting.

Magic Wand

Doctors Report Transplant Breakthrough

Los Angeles - In what's being called a major advance in organ transplants, doctors say they have developed a technique that could free many patients from having to take anti-rejection drugs for the rest of their lives.

Fish

High Mercury Levels Are Found in Tuna Sushi

Recent laboratory tests found so much mercury in tuna sushi from 20 Manhattan stores and restaurants that at most of them, a regular diet of six pieces a week would exceed the levels considered acceptable by the Environmental Protection Agency.

Sushi from 5 of the 20 places had mercury levels so high that the Food and Drug Administration could take legal action to remove the fish from the market. The sushi was bought by The New York Times in October.

Extinguisher

Le Musée du Fumeur (The Museum of Smoking)

Wander through the 11th arrondissement of Paris toward the dead celebrities of Pere Lachaise Cemetery, and there's a decent chance you'll stumble across a small gallery called "Le Musée du Fumeur." Unlike the hallowed halls of the Louvre or the Musée d'Orsay, there is no tyranny of expectation in this tiny, smoking-themed museum. No smiling Mona Lisa or reclining Olympia dictates where the random tourist should focus his attention. Thus left to meander, the drop-in visitor may well overlook the more earnest exhibits here - such as Egyptian sheeshas or Chinese opium pipes - and note the small, red-circle-and-slash signs reminding guests that, in no uncertain terms, smoking is strictly forbidden in the Museum of Smoking.

People

One out of four children involved in a divorce and custody litigation undergoes the so-called Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS)

One out of four children involved in a divorce and custody litigation undergoes the so-called Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS), consisting of the manipulation of children by the custodial parent, who incessantly tries to turn them against the other parent by arousing in them feelings of hatred and contempt for the target parent, as explained in the book Marital Conflicts, Divorce, and Children's Development (Conflictos matrimoniales, divorcio y desarrollo de los hijos, edited by Pirámide), by professors José Cantón Duarte, Mª Rosario Cortés Arboleda, and Mª Dolores Justicia Díaz, from the Department of Evolutionary and Educational Psychology of the University of Granada.