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As Traffic Piles Up, So Does Air Pollution

Posted 19 days ago by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Sept. 12, 2016 – Stuck in traffic? Shut your car windows and turn your ventilation system to re-circulate air, researchers advise. Doing so can reduce your exposure to toxic air pollution from a traffic jam by up to 76 percent, a new study suggests. "Where possible and with weather conditions allowing, it is one of the best ways to limit your exposure by keeping windows shut, fans turned off and to try and increase the distance between you and the car in front while in traffic jams or stationary at traffic lights," said study senior author Prashant Kumar. "If the fan or heater needs to be on, the best setting would be to have the air re-circulating within the car without drawing in air from outdoors," Kumar, who's with the University of Surrey in England, said in a university news release. The investigators also found that pedestrians are exposed to high levels of vehicle air ... Read more

Related support groups: Cough, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Bronchitis, Dyspnea, Cough and Nasal Congestion, Bronchiectasis, Respiratory Tract Disease, Croup

Will Worsening 'Smoke Waves' Threaten Western U.S.?

Posted 9 Sep 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Sept. 9, 2016 – Climate change, and the warmer summers it will bring, could blanket much of the western United States with persistent "smoke waves" – consecutive days of air pollution from wildfires, a new study warns. "More people in the western U.S. are likely to experience high-pollution episodes from wildfires, and the pollution episodes are likely to be more frequent, last longer and be more intense," said study author Jia Coco Liu. She was a graduate student at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies when the study was conducted. Northern California, western Oregon and the Great Plains will bear the brunt of the pollution, the researchers said. Wildfires occur frequently in the vast, dry West. The smoke they produce can spread far beyond the burning landscape, and the full impact on human health is still unclear. "The smoke has been long recognized as being ... Read more

Related support groups: Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Bronchitis, Upper Respiratory Tract Infection, Bronchiectasis, Respiratory Tract Disease

FDA Medwatch Alert: Fluoroquinolone Antibacterial Drugs for Systemic Use: Drug Safety Communication - Warnings Updated Due to Disabling Side Effects

Posted 26 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

ISSUE: FDA approved changes to the labels of fluoroquinolone antibacterial drugs for systemic use (i.e., taken by mouth or by injection). Includes the following currently available fluoroquinolones: Avelox (moxifloxacin) Cipro (ciprofloxacin) Cipro extended-release (ciprofloxacin extended-release) Factive (gemifloxacin) Levaquin (levofloxacin) Ofloxacin (generic brand) These medicines are associated with disabling and potentially permanent side effects of the tendons, muscles, joints, nerves, and central nervous system that can occur together in the same patient. As a result, FDA revised the Boxed Warning, FDA’s strongest warning, to address these serious safety issues. In addition, FDA updated other parts of the drug label including the Warnings and Precautions and Medication Guide sections. FDA has determined that fluoroquinolones should be reserved for use in patients who have no o ... Read more

Related support groups: Urinary Tract Infection, Bacterial Infection, Sinusitis, Cipro, Bronchitis, Ciprofloxacin, Levaquin, Pneumonia, Levofloxacin, Avelox, Ofloxacin, Moxifloxacin, Gemifloxacin, Floxin, Factive, Cipro XR, Anthrax, Cipro IV, Plague, Proquin XR

FDA Updates Warnings for Fluoroquinolone Antibiotics

Posted 26 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

July 26, 2016 – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today approved safety labeling changes for a class of antibiotics, called fluoroquinolones, to enhance warnings about their association with disabling and potentially permanent side effects and to limit their use in patients with less serious bacterial infections. “Fluoroquinolones have risks and benefits that should be considered very carefully,” said Edward Cox, M.D., director of the Office of Antimicrobial Products in the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. “It’s important that both health care providers and patients are aware of both the risks and benefits of fluoroquinolones and make an informed decision about their use.” Fluoroquinolones are antibiotics that kill or stop the growth of bacteria. While these drugs are effective in treating serious bacterial infections, an FDA safety review found that both oral and inj ... Read more

Related support groups: Urinary Tract Infection, Bacterial Infection, Sinusitis, Cipro, Bronchitis, Ciprofloxacin, Levaquin, Pneumonia, Levofloxacin, Avelox, Ofloxacin, Moxifloxacin, Gemifloxacin, Floxin, Factive, Cipro XR, Anthrax, Cipro IV, Plague, Proquin XR

FDA Bolsters Warnings About Class of Antibiotics

Posted 26 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, July 26, 2016 – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced Tuesday that it's strengthening label warnings on a class of antibiotics called fluoroquinolones because the drugs can lead to disabling side effects, including long-term nerve damage and ruptured tendons. The agency also cautioned that these bacteria-fighting drugs – including levofloxacin (Levaquin) and ciprofloxacin (Cipro) – shouldn't be prescribed for sinusitis, chronic bronchitis or simple urinary tract infections unless no other treatments options exist. "Fluoroquinolones have risks and benefits that should be considered very carefully," Dr. Edward Cox said in an FDA news release. He's director of the Office of Antimicrobial Products at the FDA's Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. "It's important that both health care providers and patients are aware of both the risks and benefits of ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Urinary Tract Infection, Peripheral Neuropathy, Sinusitis, Bladder Infection, Cipro, Bronchitis, Ciprofloxacin, Levaquin, Kidney Infections, Levofloxacin, Avelox, Myasthenia Gravis, Ofloxacin, Vigamox, Ciprodex, Moxifloxacin, Sinus Symptoms, Gatifloxacin, Norfloxacin

Health Tip: Need a Lung Function Test?

Posted 9 Jun 2016 by Drugs.com

-- A lung function test measures how well your lungs are working, helping your doctor diagnose the cause and severity of any problems with your breathing. The U.S. National Heart Lung and Blood Institute says the test is designed to show: The amount of air that you can breathe into your lungs to see if it's in the normal range. The amount of air that you can exhale from your lungs, and how quickly you can do it. The ability of your lungs to bring oxygen to your blood. How strong the muscles that help you breathe are. Read more

Related support groups: Asthma, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Bronchitis, Pneumonia, Asthma - Maintenance, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Maintenance, Upper Respiratory Tract Infection, Dyspnea, Asthma - Acute, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Acute, Bronchiectasis, Respiratory Tract Disease, Allergic Asthma, Respiratory Failure, Respiratory Arrest, Reversible Airways Disease, Bronchospastic Disease, Reversible Airways Disease - Maintenance

FDA Medwatch Alert: Fluoroquinolone Antibacterial Drugs: Drug Safety Communication - FDA Advises Restricting Use for Certain Uncomplicated Infections

Posted 13 May 2016 by Drugs.com

ISSUE: FDA is advising that the serious side effects associated with fluoroquinolone antibacterial drugs generally outweigh the benefits for patients with sinusitis, bronchitis, and uncomplicated urinary tract infections who have other treatment options. For patients with these conditions, fluoroquinolones should be reserved for those who do not have alternative treatment options. An FDA safety review has shown that fluoroquinolones when used systemically (i.e. tablets, capsules, and injectable) are associated with disabling and potentially permanent serious side effects that can occur together. These side effects can involve the tendons, muscles, joints, nerves, and central nervous system. As a result, FDA is requiring the drug labels and Medication Guides for all fluoroquinolone antibacterial drugs to be updated to reflect this new safety information. FDA is continuing to investigate ... Read more

Related support groups: Urinary Tract Infection, Sinusitis, Cipro, Bronchitis, Ciprofloxacin, Levaquin, Levofloxacin, Avelox, Ofloxacin, Moxifloxacin, Gatifloxacin, Gemifloxacin, Norfloxacin, Factive, Sparfloxacin, Floxin, Noroxin, Lomefloxacin, Nalidixic Acid, Maxaquin

4 Ways You Can Cut Smog in Your Town

Posted 4 May 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, May 4, 2016 – Those hazy days of summer may mean high smog levels for some northeastern U.S. states, but you can help reduce air pollution where you live, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says. Smog is a combination of ground-level ozone and fine particle air pollution. "Air pollution is a significant public health issue in New England," said Curt Spalding, regional administrator of the EPA's New England office. "New Englanders need to pay close attention to air-quality alerts and limit strenuous outdoor activity on air-quality alert days. In addition, we can all take individual actions to reduce the air pollution that contributes to this public health risk," he said in an agency news release. As part of Air Quality Awareness Week May 2-6, the EPA outlined four steps you can take to reduce air pollution, including: Use public transit or walk whenever possible. Set ... Read more

Related support groups: Cough, Sinusitis, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Bronchitis, Tonsillitis/Pharyngitis, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Maintenance, Cough and Nasal Congestion, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Acute, Sinus Symptoms, Bronchiectasis, Respiratory Tract Disease, Croup

Smog May Boost Risk for Several Cancers

Posted 29 Apr 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, April 29, 2016 – Long-term exposure to fine particles of air pollution – from cars, trucks, power plants and manufacturing facilities – is tied to an increased risk of dying from several kinds of cancer, a new study suggests. "Air pollution remains a clear, modifiable public health concern," said researcher G. Neil Thomas, a reader in epidemiology at the University of Birmingham in England. "Put simply, the more of these particulates there are in the air, the greater the risk of getting these cancers," Thomas said, although the study did not prove the particles actually cause cancer. The study, involving more than 66,000 older residents of Hong Kong, found an increased risk of dying from cancer for even small increases in exposure to these tiny particles of air pollution, which are measured in micrograms per cubic meter (mcg/m3). For example, the overall risk of dying from ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Cough, Smoking, Breast Cancer, Bronchitis, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Maintenance, Upper Respiratory Tract Infection, Lung Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Acute, Bronchiectasis, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Croup

Climate Change May Mean More Smoggy Days to Come: Study

Posted 21 Apr 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, April 21, 2016 – Climate change could cause many major American cities to experience more days with heavy ozone pollution in the coming decades, a new study predicts. If emission rates continue unchecked, regions within the United States could experience between three and nine additional days of unhealthy ozone levels between May and September by 2050, the study authors said. The researchers are concerned that climate change could undo the progress made under the Clean Air Act to rid U.S. skies of air pollution. "We found, in fact, that climate change could be a monkey wrench in our plans," said study co-author Loretta Mickley. She is a senior research fellow at Harvard's School of Engineering and Applied Sciences in Cambridge, Mass. "The number of bad ozone days per summer could double – could increase by as much as a week – by the 2050s," she said. California, the ... Read more

Related support groups: Cough, Asthma, Sinusitis, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Bronchitis, Pneumonia, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Maintenance, Cold Symptoms, Upper Respiratory Tract Infection, Asthma - Acute, Cough and Nasal Congestion, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Acute, Bronchiectasis, Respiratory Tract Disease, Allergic Asthma, Croup, Bronchospastic Disease

Doctors Issue Call to Combat Climate Change

Posted 18 Apr 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, April 18, 2016 – Climate change is already harming people's health by promoting illnesses linked to warmer temperatures and changing weather patterns, a leading group of U.S. doctors says in a new position paper. As a result, the American College of Physicians (ACP) is calling for "aggressive, concerted" action to fight climate change by curbing man-made greenhouse gas emissions. Respiratory illnesses, heat stroke and infectious diseases like Zika virus, dengue fever and cholera are flourishing as global temperatures rise, said Dr. Wayne Riley, president of the college. "Our climate is already changing and people are already being harmed. If we don't begin to address climate change, we're going to see more and more manifestations of these health problems," Riley said. "There is clear, compelling scientific consensus that climate change is real," he added. "There is no dispute." ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Anxiety and Stress, Migraine, Allergies, Major Depressive Disorder, Asthma, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Sinusitis, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Migraine Prevention, Bronchitis, Pneumonia, Asthma - Maintenance, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Maintenance, Cold Symptoms, Upper Respiratory Tract Infection, Dyspnea, Psychiatric Disorders, Migraine Prophylaxis, Dysthymia

Even Light Hookah Use May Cause Airway Problems

Posted 13 Apr 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, April 12, 2016 – Some people believe smoking from a hookah is safe because smoke passes through water before being inhaled. But, a new study found that hookah smoking may actually be more dangerous than cigarettes. The study found that young adults who are considered light hookah users have noticeable changes in the cells lining their airways. "With hookah, smoking a bowl is the equivalent of smoking a pack of cigarettes," said study leader Dr. Ronald Crystal, chairman of the department of genetic medicine at Weill Cornell Medicine in New York City. "When you talk to the hookah smokers, however, there's a general belief that it is safer than cigarette smoking. We looked at the airways, lower respiratory tract, and in the blood vessels and found biologic abnormalities in all of those who smoked hookah," he said. "Our conclusion is pretty obvious that there may be risk to ... Read more

Related support groups: Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Smoking, Bronchitis, Smoking Cessation, Dyspnea, Substance Abuse, Bronchiectasis, Respiratory Tract Disease, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse

Cleaner Air in California May Mean Healthier Kids: Study

Posted 12 Apr 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, April 12, 2016 – Southern California has cleaner air than it did 20 years ago, and children there may be breathing better because of it, a new study suggests. Researchers found that as the smog over eight Los Angeles-area communities lessened, children became less likely to suffer from bronchitis, congestion and chronic coughs. The findings, published April 12 in the Journal of the American Medical Association, do not prove that improvements in air quality deserve the credit. "We're careful to say this is an association. We can't say it's cause-and-effect for certain," said lead researcher Kiros Berhane. He is a professor of preventive medicine at the University of Southern California's Keck School of Medicine, in Los Angeles. Still, Berhane said, the findings have "a lot of credibility," partly because the study followed children living in the same handful of communities from ... Read more

Related support groups: Cough, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Bronchitis, Respiratory Tract Disease, Croup

Smog's Health Effects Persist for Decades, Study Finds

Posted 10 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Feb. 9, 2016 – Air pollution can increase the risk of premature death, even decades later, one of the longest running air pollution studies suggests. British scientists found the negative health effects of air pollution – such as a higher risk of lung and heart disease – can persist for more than 30 years. The study authors suggested that more research into the long-term health effects of air pollution – often called smog – is needed. "Air pollution has well established impacts on health, especially on heart and lung disease," study author Dr. Anna Hansell, from Imperial College London, said in a university news release. "The novel aspects of our study are the very long follow-up time and the very detailed assessment of air pollution exposure, using air-quality measurements going back to the 1970s." The researchers monitored air pollution levels in areas of England and ... Read more

Related support groups: Cough, Heart Disease, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Bronchitis, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Maintenance, Cold Symptoms, Upper Respiratory Tract Infection, Dyspnea, Coronary Artery Disease (CAD), Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Acute, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction, Bronchiectasis, Respiratory Tract Disease, Croup, Respiratory Distress Syndrome, Ischemic Heart Disease, Vasomotor Rhinitis, Respiratory Failure, Infectious Heart Disease

Study Casts Doubt on Effectiveness of COPD Drug

Posted 2 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Feb. 2, 2016 – A widely used drug may not significantly reduce the amount of time that patients with the lung condition COPD require mechanical help to breathe, a new study suggests. COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) – which is often related to smoking – includes emphysema, chronic bronchitis or a combination of the two. Common symptoms include difficulty breathing, chronic cough, wheezing and phlegm production. Over time, the condition can prove fatal. The drug acetazolamide has been used for decades to help COPD patients breathe when they develop a dangerous condition called metabolic alkalosis. However, the French study authors said that, until now, there's been no clinical trial to prove that the drug is actually effective in such cases. To try to remedy that situation, the new study included 380 French COPD patients who were expected to receive mechanical ... Read more

Related support groups: Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Bronchitis, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Maintenance, Diamox, Acetazolamide, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, Acute, Bronchiectasis, Diamox Sequels

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