Health Highlights: Aug. 21, 2012

Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:

Rosie O'Donnell Suffers Heart Attack

Rosie O'Donnell suffered a heart attack last week and doctors inserted a stent after finding a 99 percent blocked artery in the former daytime TV show host's heart.

"She is now home and resting comfortably. She is very, very lucky," a spokesperson for O'Donnell told People, the Los Angeles Times reported.

O'Donnell blogged that she experienced heart attack symptoms last Tuesday within a few hours of helping an overweight women get out of her car in a Nyack, N.Y. parking lot.

Instead of calling 911, O'Donnell decided to wait to see a cardiologist the next day, the Times reported.

"I am lucky to be here. Know the symptoms ladies, listen to the voice inside. The one we all so easily ignore. CALL 911," O'Donnell blogged.

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Romaine Lettuce Recalled Due to E. Coli Fears

Romaine lettuce shipped to 19 states, Puerto Rico and Canada is being recalled over fears about possible E. coli contamination, a northern California produce supplier says.

The recall involves a single lot of Field Fresh Wrapped Single Head Romaine that became available in retail stores starting Aug. 2, according to Salinas-based Tanimura & Antle, CBS News and the Associated Press reported.

The recalled lettuce -- sold in 9 ounce, 9.25-, 10-, 10.25-, and 16-ounce plastic bags under the labels Ready Pac, Trader Joe's, Safeway and Dining in Classic -- has the UPC number 0-27918-20314-9 and may have a "best by" date of Aug. 19.

The lettuce was shipped to Puerto Rico, Canada and the following states: Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Georgia, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, North Carolina, New Mexico, Nevada, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and Washington.

No illnesses have been reported in connection with the recalled lettuce, CBS/AP reported.

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Cantaloupe Tainted With Salmonella Blamed for 2 Deaths

Cantaloupe grown in southwestern Indiana that was tainted with salmonella has been linked to two deaths and at least 141 cases of illness nationwide, the Associated Press reported.

Health officials in Indiana and Kentucky said Friday that they were investigating farms, distributors and retailers, and authorities recommended that all Indiana residents discard cantaloupes bought since July 7, the news service said.

Kentucky health officials urged residents not to eat cantaloupes after tests revealed that the fruit had the same strain of salmonella that killed two people and sickened more than 50 others in the state, the AP reported.

According to the U.S. National Institutes of Health, salmonella -- a group of bacteria -- is the most common cause of foodborne illness in the United States. Salmonella occurs in raw poultry, eggs, beef, and sometimes on unwashed fruit and vegetables.

Symptoms include fever, diarrhea, abdominal cramps and headache. Symptoms usually last four to seven days. Most people get better without treatment. It can be more serious in the elderly, infants and people with chronic conditions. If salmonella gets into the bloodstream, it can be serious, or even life-threatening. The usual treatment is antibiotics.

Posted: August 2012


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