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Blood Disorders News

Blood Donors Needed After East Coast Storm: Red Cross

Posted 15 days ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Jan. 26, 2016 – Jonas, the massive snowstorm that hammered the East Coast, has led to a shortage of blood products and there is an emergency need for both blood and platelet donors, the American Red Cross said Tuesday. "The impact of this weekend's winter storm continues to affect multiple states along the East Coast, and more blood drives will likely be canceled. Right now, blood products are being distributed to hospitals as quickly as donations come in," the Red Cross said in a news release. Since Jan. 1, severe winter weather has led to the cancellation of more than 300 blood drives in 20 states, resulting in about 9,500 fewer donations to an already low winter supply, the Red Cross noted. Blood products can be transported where and when they are most needed, so donors in areas unaffected by the winter storm are encouraged to make blood and platelet donations, the Red ... Read more

Related support groups: Blood Disorders, Anemia, Blood Transfusion, Anemia Associated with Chronic Disease, Blood Cell Transplantation

Low Bicarbonate Levels May Be a Danger for Seniors

Posted 15 Jan 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Jan. 14, 2016 – Seniors who are healthy but have low blood levels of bicarbonate are at higher risk for premature death, a new study contends. Bicarbonate plays an important role in maintaining the body's pH balance. Fruits and vegetables are a source of bicarbonate. Researchers looked at nearly 2,300 Americans, ages 70 to 97, who were followed for an average of just over 10 years. During that time, those who were healthy and had normal or high bicarbonate levels had a similar risk of dying, but those with low bicarbonate levels had a 24 percent increased risk of death. The study was published online Jan. 14 in the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology. "What we found was that generally healthy older people with low levels of bicarbonate had a higher risk of death," study author Dr. Kalani Raphael, from the University of Utah, said in a journal news release. ... Read more

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The Pill, Hormone Therapy Safe for Women Taking Blood Thinners: Study

Posted 22 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Dec. 22, 2015 – Women on blood thinners can also take contraceptives that contain estrogen, or hormone replacement therapy, without raising their risk for blood clots or uterine bleeding, a new Italian study finds. Currently, women diagnosed with blood clots may be advised to stop hormone therapy or use of the contraceptive pill – even if they are already on a blood thinner. The reason: Doctors are often concerned that these drug combinations might raise the patient's risk for more clots. However, "there has been no evidence to support this decision," said the study's senior author, Dr. Ida Martinelli, of the A. Bianchi Bonomi Hemophilia and Thrombosis Center in Milan. "We conducted this study to address the fear felt by both the physician and patient when making the decision to stop or continue hormone therapy in this setting," she explained in a news release from the ... Read more

Related support groups: Birth Control, Blood Disorders, Contraception, Bleeding Disorder, Emergency Contraception, Warfarin, Coumadin, Hot Flashes, Estradiol, Menopausal Disorders, Xarelto, Premarin, Pradaxa, Estrace, Ethinyl Estradiol, Postcoital Contraception, Lovenox, Postmenopausal Symptoms, Vivelle, Heparin

FDA Lifts Ban on Blood Donations by Gay Men

Posted 21 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Dec. 21, 2015 – Gay and bisexual men who have abstained from sex for one year will now be allowed to donate blood in the United States. The new policy, announced Monday by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, reverses a three-decades-old ban on donations from this group of men that traces back to the start of the AIDS epidemic. "The FDA's responsibility is to maintain a high level of blood product safety for people whose lives depend on it," FDA Acting Commissioner Stephen Ostroff said in an agency news release. "We have taken great care to ensure this policy revision is backed by sound science and continues to protect our blood supply." The FDA said it was changing its policy based on data from other countries that show allowing such donations would not increase the risk of HIV-tainted blood entering America's blood supply. FDA officials have estimated that about half of the ... Read more

Related support groups: Blood Disorders, Bleeding Disorder, Harvoni, HIV Infection, Valtrex, Acyclovir, Anemia, Tamiflu, Atripla, Ribavirin, Valacyclovir, Incivek, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis, Zovirax, Blood Transfusion, Truvada, Triumeq, Baraclude, Stribild, Complera

Gene Therapy Shows Early Potential for Rare Immune System Disorder

Posted 7 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

SATURDAY, Dec. 5, 2015 – Gene therapy might restore immunity in children and young adults with a rare inherited immune system disorder called X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency, researchers report in a small study. The condition, which primarily affects males, is caused by mutations in the IL2RG gene that prevent normal development and function of infection-fighting immune cells. Patients are at high risk for life-threatening infections, according to background information with the study. This early study was designed to test the safety and effectiveness of the procedure. Much more work is needed before the treatment could be approved for patients. Currently, the most effective treatment is a transplant of blood-forming stem cells from a genetically matched sibling. Patients without a matched sibling often receive transplants from a parent, but this only partially restores their ... Read more

Related support groups: Blood Disorders, Diagnosis and Investigation

Health Tip: Know Your Risk for Deep Vein Thrombosis

Posted 4 Aug 2015 by Drugs.com

-- A dangerous condition called deep vein thrombosis (DVT) occurs when a blood clot develops in a vein deep inside the body. The U.S. National Heart Lung and Blood Institute mentions these potential risk factors: Having had a previous DVT, or taking medication that thickens the blood or promotes clotting. Having had surgery, a broken bone or other injury that affects a deep vein. Having reduced blood flow to a deep vein as a result of inactivity. Typical causes are post-surgical recovery, or taking a long trip that limits your ability to move around. Being pregnant. Being treated for cancer. Having a central venous catheter. Being over the age of 60, being a smoker or being obese. Read more

Related support groups: Blood Disorders, Warfarin, Coumadin, Xarelto, Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT), Pradaxa, Lovenox, Heparin, Deep Vein Thrombosis, Eliquis, Deep Vein Thrombosis - First Event, Deep Vein Thrombosis - Recurrent Event, Rivaroxaban, Enoxaparin, Deep Vein Thrombosis Prophylaxis after Knee Replacement Surgery, Clexane, Apixaban, Fragmin, Arixtra, Hep-Pak

Antibiotic May Lower Effect of Some Blood Thinners

Posted 21 Jul 2015 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, July 21, 2015 – The antibiotic dicloxacillin may lessen the effects of some blood-thinning medications, new research shows. "The surprise in the study was just how much of an impact dicloxacillin had," said study author Anton Pottegard, a pharmacist and research fellow at the University of Southern Denmark, in Odense. "Often, the effects in these kinds of studies are quite small. But this was very pronounced: Six out of 10 patients dropped so much in their level of blood-thinning that they were no longer sufficiently protected against clotting and stroke," Pottegard said. Coumadin (warfarin) and similar blood thinners lower the risk of blood clots, a potential cause of strokes and heart attacks, by thinning the blood so blockages don't form in vessels, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine. Patients with irregular heart rhythms, such as atrial fibrillation, and ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Blood Disorders, Warfarin, Coumadin, Metronidazole, Bacterial Infection, Bactrim, Atrial Fibrillation, Ischemic Stroke, Flagyl, Bactrim DS, Prevention of Thromboembolism in Atrial Fibrillation, Xifaxan, Polymyxin B, Sulfamethoxazole/Trimethoprim, Septra, Zyvox, Bacitracin, Rifaximin, Metro

Study Sees No Link Between Testosterone Therapy and Blood Clots

Posted 20 Jul 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, July 20, 2015 – Testosterone therapy doesn't appear to increase the risk of blood clots in veins, a new study contends. The most common forms of this problem – called venous thromboembolism (VTE) – are deep vein thrombosis (a clot in the leg) and pulmonary embolism (a clot in the lungs). VTE is the third most common type of cardiovascular problem, after heart attack and stroke, the researchers said. There is conflicting information about the link between testosterone therapy and the risk of VTE. As a result, many men with low testosterone and their doctors are reluctant to start testosterone therapy, the study investigators said. "In 2014, the [U.S.] Federal Drug Administration required manufacturers to add a warning about potential risks of VTE to the label of all approved testosterone products," study author Jacques Baillargeon, a professor of epidemiology at the University ... Read more

Related support groups: Blood Disorders, Bleeding Disorder, Testosterone, AndroGel, Testim, Axiron, Androderm, Depo-Testosterone, Fortesta, Testopel, Testopel Pellets, Testim 5 g/packet, Delatestryl, Coagulation Defects and Disorders, Aveed, Striant, AndroGel 1.25 g/actuation, Estra-Testrin, Testro-LA, AndroGel 2.5 g/packet

Blood Test Could Reveal Your Viral History

Posted 4 Jun 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, June 4, 2015 – A single drop of blood may reveal a range of viruses a person has contracted recently, or possibly years ago, a new study suggests. Writing in the June 5 issue of Science, researchers describe a new technology that can test for more than 1,000 viral strains at the same time – using one drop of blood. Experts said the achievement could represent an advance over existing tests, which look for just one virus at a time. But for now, they see the one-stop, $25 test as useful for research purposes, rather than real-world diagnostics. "It's hard to say how far off any clinical application could be," said Tomasz Kula, one of the researchers on the study and a graduate student at Harvard University in Boston. More immediately, Kula said, the test – called VirScan – could aid research. "One example would be studies that look for correlations between people's viral ... Read more

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Researchers Report Progress in Making All Blood Types Universally Accepted

Posted 21 May 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, May 21, 2015 – Scientists are closing in on a way to transform any type of donated blood into type O, the universal blood type that can safely be given to any patient. Researchers have created a special enzyme that can shear off the substances on red blood cells that are responsible for potentially fatal immune reactions if a patient receives the wrong type of blood, according to a new study. The enzyme is not yet effective enough to allow for large-scale processing to convert type A or type B blood into type O, said lead author David Kwan, a postdoctoral fellow of chemistry at the University of British Columbia's Centre for Blood Research in Vancouver, Canada. "We're not there yet. This is really a step towards that," Kwan said. "The big thing is that we've shown that it's feasible to improve these enzymes." Results of the study were published online recently in the Journal ... Read more

Related support groups: Blood Disorders, Bleeding Disorder, Anemia, Blood Transfusion, Exchange Transfusion, Blood Cell Transplantation, Anemia Prior to Surgery

Gene Mutations Tied to Leukemia Rise With Age, Study Finds

Posted 26 Feb 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 26, 2015 – For many people, an increase in genetic mutations that could trigger leukemia seems to be an inevitable part of aging, a new study finds. The British researchers looked specifically at mutations in blood stem cells. "Over time, the probability of these cells acquiring mutations rises," co-lead author Thomas McKerrell, of the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, said in an institute news release. "What surprised us was that we found these mutations in such a large proportion of elderly people," he added. In the study, researchers looked at more than 4,200 people without any evidence of blood cancer. They found that up to 20 percent of people aged 50 to 60, and more than 70 percent of people older than 90, have blood cells with the same gene changes seen in leukemia. Just carrying a particular mutation doesn't mean that a leukemia is guaranteed, however. "Leukemia ... Read more

Related support groups: Blood Disorders, Leukemia

Many Kids Who Undergo Stem Cell Transplants Must Return to Hospital

Posted 24 Apr 2013 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, April 24 – Nearly two-thirds of children who received stem cell transplants were readmitted to the hospital within six months for treatment of problems such as infections and unexplained fevers, a new study finds. Children who were given stem cells donated by other people were twice as likely to be readmitted as those who received their own stem cells, said the researchers at Dana-Farber/Children's Hospital Cancer Center in Boston. "No one had ever looked at these data in children," Dr. Leslie Lehmann, clinical director of pediatric stem cell transplantation, said in a cancer center news release. "This is very important information and will allow us to counsel families appropriately, as well as try to devise interventions that reduce the rate of readmissions." Lehmann and Harvard Medical School student David Shulman analyzed the medical records of 129 children who had stem ... Read more

Related support groups: Blood Disorders

Off-Label Use of Clotting Drug Soars, Report Finds

Posted 18 Apr 2011 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, April 18 – Hospitals are using a pricey blood-clotting drug in treating people who do not have hemophilia, a rare disorder in which blood does not clot normally – even though its use in such patients is potentially risky, according to new research. Stanford University researchers found that use of the drug, known as recombinant factor 7a, grew by 140 times from use in 125 cases in 2000 to 17,813 in 2008, with off-label uses accounting for most of the increase. The $10,000-a-dose drug was used in people with hemophilia just 4 percent of the time, according to U.S. hospital statistics from 2000 to 2008. The rest of the time, it was used during heart surgery and to treat medical problems such as trauma and bleeding in the brain. The researchers content that such use puts patients at risk for heart attack and stroke because the drug can boost the risk of blood clots. "The stakes ... Read more

Related support groups: Blood Disorders

Gene Rx May Fight Severe Blood Disorder

Posted 15 Sep 2010 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 15 – Patients suffering from a severe, inherited blood disorder may one day benefit from a new gene therapy and no longer need regular blood transfusions, new research suggests. However, far more study is needed to determine whether the therapy is safe and effective. So far only one patient has received the experimental treatment, and the researchers have followed him for only three years. The blood disorder – beta-thalassemia – occurs when a crucial blood protein known as beta globin is missing from the red blood cells that carry oxygen. Without beta globin, many of the red blood cells die off, causing severe anemia and eventually death if the person goes untreated. Beta-thalassemia mostly affects people of Mediterranean, Middle Eastern, Southeast Asian and Chinese descent. Some 100,000 children are born with the disease each year around the world, according to the ... Read more

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