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Fri, 24 Mar 2023
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Health & Wellness


Botox Linked To Respiratory Failure And Death, FDA Advises

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has notified the public that Botox and Botox Cosmetic (Botulinum toxin Type A) and Myobloc (Botulinum toxin Type B) have been linked in some cases to adverse reactions, including respiratory failure and death, following treatment of a variety of conditions using a wide range of doses.

In an early communication based on the FDA's ongoing safety review, the agency said the reactions may be related to overdosing. There is no evidence that these reactions are related to any defect in the products.

The adverse effects were found in FDA-approved and nonapproved usages. The most severe adverse effects were found in children treated for spasticity in their limbs associated with cerebral palsy. Treatment of spasticity is not an FDA-approved use of botulism toxins in children or adults.


Surprise! Flu vaccine may not provide 'enough' protection

Officials question influenza shot as number of U.S. flu cases increase.

The influenza vaccine given to Americans may not protect as well as expected, U.S. health officials said on Friday as the number of flu cases increased nationwide.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said slightly more than half of the influenza virus strains reported to its surveillance system are not good matches against the strains included in this flu season's vaccine.

The number of states reporting widespread flu activity jumped to 31 this week compared with 11 a week ago, the CDC said. But Dr. Joe Bresee of the CDC's influenza division said there are no indications this flu season is worse than usual.

Comment: read here for the bigger picture: Signs Supplement: The Flu Threat


France Halts Genetically Modified Corn

Paris - The French government on Saturday suspended the use of genetically modified corn crops in France while it awaits EU approval for a full ban.


A Dangerous Transition: High School to the First Year of College

Increases in young women's drinking during the transition from high school through the first year of college can have dangerous physical, sexual and psychological implications, according to a report out of the University at Buffalo's Research Institute on Addictions.


UK Antidepressant Use Soars 'Out Of Control'

Britain has become a "Prozac nation", with the use of antidepressants spiralling out of control amid a crisis in mental health care, the Liberal Democrat leader, Nick Clegg, will warn today.

In a speech to the Guardian public services summit, Clegg will commit his party to a maximum 13-week wait for NHS treatment for mental health problems. If the NHS misses the target, the patient will be entitled to go private and make the health service pick up the bill, he will say.


H1N1 Tamiflu Resistance Rises in US

Today's CDC media update raised issues for all three seasonal flu serotypes. 93% of influenza B isolates was B/Yamagata/26/88, which doesn't match the vaccine strain (B/Victoria02/87). 87% of the H3N2 was A/Brisbane/10/2007, which doesn't match the vaccine strain (A/Wisconsin/67/2005). H1N1 did match the vaccine strain (Solomon Island/3/2006), but 8.1% was Tamiflu resistant in the United States. Moreover the incidence of flu positives was above the epidemic threshold for the four week in a row. Last week it rose dramatically above the threshold.


Thou shalt not smoke: WHO Launches Global Anti-Smoking Project

Tobacco could kill up to a billion people during the 21st century, as cigarette sales soar in poor and middle-income countries even as they drop in wealthier ones, says a report issued Thursday by the World Health Organization.

The report, financed by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg's foundation, suggests a six-point program for fighting the tobacco industry's influence.


Video Games Normalize Killing, Doctors Say

Playing video games increases aggression in some children and young adults and normalizes killing, some doctors said.


SAfrica Questions Circumcision Advice

Cape Town, South Africa - South Africa's health minister took another controversial foray into the AIDS debate Thursday by questioning international medical studies that say circumcision helps reduce HIV infections in men.

"She remains a minister who is addicted to folly," Lewis said in an interview from Canada. "There is overwhelming scientific evidence that male circumcision is one of the important ways of preventing transmission of the virus. This is proven beyond a shadow of a doubt."
Maybe there is no shadow of doubt in Lewis's mind, but what the article does not mention is that there is indeed doubt among several researchers.

Read this thread on the forum: Bogus Evidence That Male Circumcision Prevents HIV Spread

Other articles of interest:
Circumcision does not affect HIV in U.S. men
Male genital mutilation could save millions from HIV infection, AIDS conference told - and be an almost unlimited source for Western facial cream
Male circumcision overstated as prevention tool against AIDS

Magic Wand

Study: Acupuncture May Boost Pregnancy

It sounds far-fetched - sticking needles in women to help them become pregnant - but a scientific review suggests that acupuncture might improve the odds of conceiving if done right before or after embryos are placed in the womb.