Latest News

GERD sufferers sought for study on investigational heartburn treatment

Researchers in Sacramento, Calif., are looking for people who still experience troublesome symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) even while taking heartburn medication, to participate in a study to evaluate an investigational heartburn treatment. Symptoms of GERD include heartburn, or a burning sensation under the breastbone, burning in the back of the throat due to regurgitation of stomach acid, nausea and vomiting. If left untreated, GERD can result in painful inflammation or ulcers in the esophagus, scar tissue in the esophagus, Barrett’s esophagus, cough and asthma, inflammation and infection in the lungs, inflammation of the throat and larynx, and even ... Read More

Baby Julie mystery kicks off SJS awareness month

Discovery Channel viewers who watched a recent episode of Mystery Diagnosis were as stumped as doctors when the show featured the case of Baby Julie, a 10-month-old who began taking anti-seizure medication after suffering two seizures. Shortly afterward, her eyes swelled shut and she developed strange blisters on her back. She was diagnosed with conjunctivitis, or red eye, in both eyes and the common childhood virus, chickenpox. But her condition worsened. Mystery Diagnosis usually ends each episode with a solid diagnosis and summary on the patient’s prognosis. But the Baby Julie story had no resolution, which prompted viewers to research ... Read More

FDA offers shoulder pain pump safety tips to nurses

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has released safety tips for nurses on elastomeric infusion devices, or pain pumps, used during and up to 72 hours after surgery to deliver a continuous amount of local anesthetic directly into the patient’s intra-articular space, or shoulder joint, for postoperative pain control. The FDA has received approximately 35 reports of chondrolysis in patients who received continuous intra-articular infusions with pain pump devices. This type of chondrolysis, called postarthroscopic glenhumeral chondrolysis (PAGCL), occurs when the shoulder cartilage is worn away, causing bone to rub against bone. It is a severe, life-altering complication that is ... Read More

Experimental gastroparesis drug to be presented at medical conference

A new medication may soon be available for patients who suffer from advanced gastroparesis, or delayed emptying of the stomach contents. Tranzyme Pharma is presenting data on its experimental drug ulimorelin later this month at the 2010 Joint International Meeting in Neurogastroenterology and Motility in Boston, Mass. The presentation, entitled, “Ulimorelin (ghrelin agonist) effects on daily vomiting due to diabetic gastroparesis,” summarizes the effects of ulimorelin in patients with daily, moderate to severe vomiting. Individuals with severe gastroparesis face frequent hospitalizations and emergency room admissions due to recurrent nausea and vomiting, which are often associated with dehydration, malnutrition and weight ... Read More

Survey helps women choose the best birth control method for them

Choosing a method of birth control is an important decision for most women. There are several factors to consider from cost and convenience to side effects and safety. With so many different birth control pills and contraceptive devices available today, women are encouraged to research their options to find the best fit for their lifestyle. Planned Parenthood is offering to help women decide what type of contraception is best suited to them. My Method is an online questionnaire developed because “birth control methods are not one-size-fits-all.” Take the survey here. The brief questionnaire is written for women. Men are welcome ... Read More

Miami company willfully overexposed its workers to toxic levels of lead

Miami, Florida company E.N. Range Inc. has been slapped with more than $2 million in penalties for willfully exposing its employees to lead and for other violations that seriously threaten the health and safety of company workers. Occupational Safety and Health Administration inspectors found that the company knowingly neglected to protect its employees, who clean gun ranges, from dangerous overexposure to lead. The company also dispensed non-FDA-approved treatments for lead exposure to the employees without the proper medical supervision. OSHA cited E.N. Range with more than 50 violations with penalties totaling $2,099,600. Lead is a dangerous neurotoxin that can impair ... Read More

NHTSA may soon require safety belts in all new motor coaches

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has proposed requiring safety belts in all new passenger buses and large school buses. The lap and shoulder belts would be mandatory on all passenger seats and the driver’s seat as well. The proposal, which would amend the federal motor vehicle safety standard on occupant crash protection (FMVSS No. 208), is intended to prevent the ejection of bus occupants in a crash or rollover. If passed, the measure is expected to prevent nearly 800 injuries and save 8 lives annually. The proposal estimates the total cost of adding belts, changing the anchorages, and reinforcing ... Read More

Bayer launches new birth control pill amid a flurry of Yaz lawsuits

It wasn’t enough that Bayer Healthcare overwhelmed the oral contraceptive market with its No. 1 selling, $800 million-earning Yaz birth control pill. The powerful drug company is at it again, this time introducing a new oral contraceptive, Natazia. Bayer cleverly launched Yaz in 2006, promising that the new formulation birth control pill – a combination of ethinyl estradiol and drospirenone – not only prevented pregnancy but also helped treat premenstrual symptoms and acne. Women began to ask their doctors for the pill by name, skyrocketing sales. Soon after, a review by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) found the ads ... Read More

OSHA fines Sea World for safety violations after orca trainer’s death

SeaWorld has been hit with a $75,000 fine by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration for three safety violations following the death of one of its senior trainers in February. One of the violations is classified as willful – OSHA’s most serious civil penalty. “SeaWorld recognized the inherent risk of allowing trainers to interact with potentially dangerous animals,” said Cindy Coe, OSHA’s regional administrator in Atlanta, Ga. “Nonetheless, it required its employees to work within the pool walls, on ledges, and on shelves where they were subject to dangerous behavior by the animals.” On Feb. 24, a six-ton orca named ... Read More

New Orleans mayor says BP is ready to "cut and run"

New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu told an audience at the National Press Club in Washington D.C. on Thursday that he lacks faith in BP and doesn’t trust the company to do the right thing in the aftermath of the oil spill. The journalism organization invited Mr. Landrieu to speak about the progress New Orleans is making with its rebuilding efforts on the fifth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina and about the effects the oil spill continues to have on his city. Landrieu criticized BP’s cleanup efforts in the Gulf, telling the Press Club, “In my opinion, they’re poised to cut and ... Read More