Latest News

Oregon Woman Blames Physiomesh for Her Injuries

An Oregon woman has filed a lawsuit against the makers of her Physiomesh hernia repair mesh, blaming the product for her injuries. According to the lawsuit, on Sept. 3, 2015, Melinda Rall underwent surgery to repair a recurrent incisional hernia at the OSV Providence St. Vincent Medical Center in Portland, Oregon. A hernia repair mesh called Physiomesh was used, made by Ethicon, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson. Immediately following the surgery, Rall says she began to experience an unusual amount of severe pain as well as bleeding. The next day, Rall underwent an additional procedure to help reduce the swelling and put a ... Read More

Medicaid Fraud targeted by Massachusetts to Fight Opioid Addiction

The State of Massachusetts is tackling Medicaid fraud and opioid addiction by warning doctors who provide treatment services through the state’s Medicaid program not to unlawfully charge patients struggling with addiction to opioid painkillers. Massachusetts law requires providers of opioid addiction treatment to accept payment from the state’s Medicaid program, MassHealth, as full payment for their services. The buprenorphine-based drugs Suboxone, Subutex, and Vivitrol are used to treat opioid addiction under the Medicaid program to suppress opioid withdrawal and cravings. According to Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey, the state has brought numerous criminal and civil enforcement actions against Medicaid providers that ... Read More

Study: ‘Dabbing’ Vapor Found to Contain Benzene

Portland State University organic chemistry researchers have found that benzene is formed when a marijuana extract is vaporized. In a study led by Jiries Meehan-Atrash, Dr. Wentai Luo and  Dr. Robert M. Strongin, the researchers scrutinize “dabbing,” a unique way of marijuana consumption using butane hash oil (BHO), KATU2 reports. “Of very recent concern is the practice of dabbing, which has emerged as a dangerous and rapidly growing trend in cannabis consumption,” the study reads. “It consists of inhaling the vapors produced by placing a small amount of cannabis extract (a ‘dab’) on a small heated surface (the ‘nail’), which is ... Read More

Traffic Fatalities Rise Again in 2016

Traffic fatalities in the U.S., already at a 50-year high, leaped again last year dramatically, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Traffic data collected from all 50 states and the District of Columbia show that 37,461 people were killed on U.S. highways and roads in 2016, an increase of 5.6 percent from 2015, NHTSA reported. Part of the rise in traffic fatalities can be attributed to a corresponding leap in the number of vehicle miles traveled on U.S. roads in 2016. According to NHTSA, vehicle miles traveled increased by 2.2 percent last year, resulting in about 1.18 deaths per ... Read More

Diabetes drugs may cause serious muscle injury

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is evaluating whether regulatory action is needed after receiving reports of a serious muscle injury called rhabdomyolysis in patients treated with type 2 diabetes drugs from the dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) inhibitor class. The issue was identified during a review of reports to the FDA’s Adverse Event Reporting System, FAERS. Drugs in this class include Glyxambi, Janumet, Janumet XR, Januvia, Jentadueto, Jentadueto XR, Kazano, Kombiglyze XR, Nesina, Onglyza, Oseni, Qtern, and Tradgenta. DPP-4 inhibitors are used along with diet and exercise to lower blood sugar in adults with type 2 diabetes. The drugs first hit ... Read More

Skin treatment linked to transient amnesia

Cases of transient global amnesia have been linked to Ameluz Gel, a topical treatment for actinic keratosis on the face and scalp. Actinic keratosis is a rough, scaly patch on the skin caused by years of sun exposure. Ameluz Gel contains the active ingredient aminolevulinic acid hydrochloride. It was approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in May 2016 to be used in combination with photodynamic therapy using BF-RhodoLED lamp. It works by causing damage to cellular components, and results in the dying of cells. Transient global amnesia is a sudden, temporary episode of memory loss that can’t be ... Read More

Pennsylvania U-Haul Worker Killed in Industrial Accident

At U-Haul Falls Manufacturing in Falls, Pennsylvania, a tragic industrial accident left one employee dead. One of U-Haul’s workers died at 12:31 p.m. Oct. 6 at the steel plant when he was pinned between a table and a machine, reports the Bucks County Courier Times. According to the township’s fire marshal Rich Dippolito, the incident occurred when a steel product on the table flipped it into the air. When the table landed, it pinned the worker against a machine. Co-workers rushed to his aid, pulling him free. When the Morrisville Rescue Squad arrived on scene, the worker was transported to a hospital. There, he was ... Read More

Clinical trial safety protocol overlooked, FDA says

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a warning letter to Dr. Laveeza Bhatti with Beverly Hills’ Cedars-Sinai Medical Group for disregarding safety protocols regarding cardiovascular safety during clinical trials of experimental drugs, Law360 reports. The name of the drugs were redacted in the letter published online, but the letter indicated that the drugs carried potential cardiovascular risks. Thus, the study’s protocol called for participants to have electrocardiograms (ECG) performed during the testing and for the drugs to be discontinued if certain heart problems were diagnosed. However, at least five patients in the study missed some of the ECGs. “Failure ... Read More

More questions about the safety of J&J’s talc

In the largest Missouri talc ovarian cancer verdict, Lois Slemp was awarded $110 million by jurors who found Johnson and Johnson and its talc supplier Imerys Talc America Inc. responsible for her ovarian cancer. There have so far been seven completed talc trials in three states, with six plaintiff wins and damages of $724 million. All of these have alleged that talc particles when used in the genital area can travel through the female reproductive tract to the ovaries where they cause inflammation that leads to ovarian cancer. Slemp’s case was different from the other talc cases, which all accuse ... Read More

Operational Pause for CH-53 helicopter After In-flight Fire, Emergency Landing

A U.S. Marine Corps CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter was forced to make an emergency landing in Okinawa, Japan, last week after experiencing an in-flight fire, according to The New York Times. Following the event, Military.com reported that the commanding general of the III Marine Expeditionary Force, Lt. Gen. Lawrence Nicholson, implemented a 96-hour operational pause for the rest of the fleet of CH-53E Super Stallions based at the USMC Air Station Futenma in Japan. The heavy-lift helicopter was assigned to the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing (MAW), forward-based in Japan, Military.com also reported. The aircraft had been conducting “regularly scheduled training” when ... Read More