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Health Headlines - February 18

Posted Oct 23 2008 2:25pm
Merck May Consider Selling Vioxx Again

Merck & Co. Inc. (MRK.N) will consider selling its arthritis pill Vioxx again if the U.S. Food and Drug Administration decides the cardiovascular risks are similar to those of related prescription pain relievers, a company official said on Thursday.

Alzheimer-Risk Gene Makes Brain Work Harder

Mental tasks take an extra effort for healthy non-demented older adults with a genetic variation called APOE-e4, which has been linked to an increased risk of developing Alzheimer's disease, research shows.

Obesity Poses Risk to Kidney Transplant Kids

The proportion of children undergoing a kidney transplant who are obese is on the rise, researchers report.

Writing Out Feelings Helps, But Not for Asthma

Although expressing ones emotions through writing has numerous documented health benefits, it appears to do little to ease asthma, new study findings show.

Gene 'Signature' May Predict Breast Cancer Relapse

Scientists have discovered a genetic marker that may predict which breast cancer patients are at high risk of recurrence, potentially saving many women from undergoing unnecessary chemotherapy.

New HIV Strain Shakes Up New York Gay Community

A potentially virulent strain of the HIV virus found last week in a New York man has the gay community worried about a new deadly epidemic, and activists battling a scourge they believed was contained.

Women Laid Off Job May Run Risk of Heart Disease

Getting fired or laid off from work may not only be bad for your wallet, but also be bad for your health.

Genome Map Offers First Look at Human Differences

The first published map of human genetic differences offers a major step toward truly personalized medicine, from predicting who will get what disease to finding ways of choosing the best drug for an individual patient, scientists said on Thursday.

Pain Drug Mobic Shows Increased Risk

A pain reliever called Mobic has shown a higher risk of heart attacks in early data than found with Merck & Co. Inc.'s now-withdrawn Vioxx, a veteran U.S. Food and Drug Administration scientist told an FDA advisory panel on Thursday.

TB Prevention Among Homeless Faces Hurdles

A recent outbreak of tuberculosis among homeless people in New York highlights the difficulty in tracing cases when they're handled by different jurisdictions, according to public health officials.

Vitamin D May Ward Off Prostate Cancer

Getting a little sunshine may be one way for men to cut their risk of prostate cancer. A large study presented at a cancer conference Thursday found that men with higher levels vitamin D in their blood were half as likely to develop aggressive forms of prostate cancer.

Saliva Holds Promise for Drug Testing

Detecting illegal drug use may one day become as simple as testing spit on a sponge. Researchers on Thursday said techniques now being developed for analyzing saliva may in the future replace many of the blood and urine tests that now are used.

Doctors Study Viagra As Stroke Treatment

Doctors at Henry Ford Hospital here have begun studying Viagra as a possible treatment for strokes.

Senate OKs Ban on Genetic Discrimination

The Senate voted Thursday to protect people who are reluctant to have genetic testing for breast cancer or heart disease because of fears the results might cost them their jobs or health insurance.

Vatican Decries 'Religion of Health'

Vatican officials on Thursday held out Pope John Paul II's stoic suffering with Parkinson's disease as an antidote to the mentality that modern medicine must cure all, calling this a "religion of health" that is taking hold in affluent countries.

Health Tip: Deal With Grief

Whether it is the illness or death of a loved one, the loss of a job or income, or the end of a marriage or relationship, each of us has a personal way to cope with grief. Only you know what is best for your personality and lifestyle.

Stem Cells Promise Better Plastic Surgery

Stem cells have gotten a lot of attention over the past few years, mostly for their potential in treating life-threatening diseases.

Young Blood Rejuvenates Old Muscles

Young blood can help revive damaged older muscles, according to a study that found the blood of aged mice somehow hinders muscle's ability to repair itself.

Monkeys Control Robotic Arm With Brain

With the help of a computer, monkeys using only their brain signals are now able to move a robotic arm to feed themselves pieces of fruit and vegetables, researchers report.

Wives Who Bite Their Tongues Risk Their Lives

Married women who keep quiet during conflicts with their mates greatly boost their risk of dying from any cause, a new study finds.

Science Points to a 'Sixth Sense'

Ever get a gut feeling something just isn't quite right, and make a decision accordingly? Science is beginning to suggest those instincts may have roots deep in the brain.

New Vaccine Boosts Prostate Cancer Survival

For the first time, a vaccine therapy that harnesses the power of the body's own immune system is proving successful in the fight against metastatic prostate cancer.

Nursing Home Drug May Speed Alzheimer's

The antipsychotic drug quetiapine, commonly used to treat agitation and other symptoms in people with Alzheimer's living in nursing homes, greatly speeds up cognitive decline.

Gene telltale helps victims of breast cancer

Scientists in the Netherlands say they have developed a powerful diagnostic tool, based on a telltale gene "signature," that could help breast-cancer patients avoid unnecessary follow-up treatment.

Breakthrough in study of schizophrenia announced

Australian researchers announced a breakthrough in the search for the cause of schizophrenia, linking the impaired thought processes involved with the disorder to thinning grey matter in the brain.

15 dead, five hospitalised as cholera hits Nigerian state

Fifteen people have died and five were hospitalised following an outbreak of cholera in two communities in the southeastern Nigerian state of Anambra, the Nigerian Red Cross said.

Senate passes bar on 'genetic discrimination'

The Senate, by a vote of 98 to 0, approved legislation barring employers and health insurance companies from using genetic data to discriminate against workers or potential policy holders.

Violent movies, video games boost aggressive behaviour in children

Violence on TV, home movies and video and computer games has a major short-term effect on young children, boosting the risk of aggressive behaviour or fear, British researchers say.

Flu epidemic hits Italy putting pope and the prime minister in bed

A particularly virulent flu virus has hit Italy putting more than 800,000 people in bed including the pope and the prime minister.

China planning large-scale introduction of genetically-engineered rice

China is on the verge of introducing genetically-engineered rice on a large scale as it seeks ways to adequately supply the basic staple to its people.
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