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Health Highlights: March 13, 2017

Posted 13 Mar 2017 by

Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay: Consumer Advocates Pan Trump's Choice for FDA Head A former top official in the U.S. Food and Drug Administration during the administration of President George W. Bush is President Donald Trump's choice to lead the agency. The nomination of Scott Gottlieb, 44, was welcomed by drug industry executives but criticized by consumer advocates, who said he is too deeply tied to pharmaceutical companies, The New York Times reported. Gottlieb is a partner at a venture capital fund with extensive links to the medicine and biotech industries. "He is basically entangled in an unprecedented web of ties to big pharma," Dr. Michael Carome, director of the health research group at the consumer organization Public Citizen, told The Times. "He is someone who has been an industry shill and has spent ... Read more

Related support groups: Poisoning, Addison's Disease, Hodgkin's Lymphoma, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Meningitis - Listeriosis

'Listeria on Rye'? Many U.S. Deli Meat Slicers Cut Corners on Cleanliness

Posted 31 Mar 2016 by

THURSDAY, March 31, 2016 – The next time you sidle up to the deli counter for a sandwich, you may want to think about how often the meat slicer gets cleaned. That's because a new federal government survey of a sample of delis across the United States found that about half fail to clean their slicing equipment every four hours, as recommended. Leaving machines cleaned and unsterilized for longer than four hours raises the odds for potentially deadly listeria, according to the report released Thursday by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "Meats sliced and packaged at retail delis are the major source of listeriosis illnesses" because of the potential for cross-contamination, a team led by researcher Laura Brown said in the report. The CDC notes that infection with the listeria bacterium is the third largest cause of deaths linked to food-borne illness in the United ... Read more

Related support groups: Infectious Gastroenteritis, Traveler's Diarrhea, Meningitis - Listeriosis

Multistate Foodborne Illness Outbreaks the Most Deadly: CDC

Posted 3 Nov 2015 by

TUESDAY, Nov. 3, 2015 – Multistate outbreaks caused by contaminated food account for more than half of all foodborne illness deaths in the United States, even though they only represent 3 percent of all reported outbreaks, a new government report shows. The findings prompted U.S. health officials to urge the food industry to play a larger role in preventing multistate outbreaks, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said. "Americans shouldn't have to worry about getting sick from the food they eat," CDC director Dr. Tom Frieden said during a news conference Tuesday. But each year one in six Americans is sickened by contaminated food, he said, adding that, "food industries play a critical role in improving our food safety." The food industry can help stop outbreaks by keeping better records to allow officials to trace contaminated food faster and by alerting consumers to ... Read more

Related support groups: Poisoning, Infectious Gastroenteritis, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Traveler's Diarrhea, Salmonella Enteric Fever, Meningitis - Listeriosis, Salmonella Gastroenteritis, Traveler's Diarrhea Prophylaxis, Enterocolitis, Salmonella Extraintestinal Infection

Caramel Apples Can Harbor Listeria, Study Finds

Posted 14 Oct 2015 by

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 14, 2015 – Caramel apples with dipping sticks – sometimes handed out as Halloween treats – can make you sick if they're not refrigerated, researchers warn. The researchers studied the growth of Listeria monocytogenes bacteria on caramel apples stored at either room temperature or in the refrigerator. Some of the apples in both groups had dipping sticks and others did not. After three days, the amount of listeria on unrefrigerated apples with sticks increased 1,000-fold, while listeria growth on unrefrigerated apples without sticks was delayed, the investigators found. Refrigerated apples with sticks had no listeria growth for a week, but then had some growth over the next three weeks. Refrigerated apples without sticks had no listeria growth over four weeks, the findings showed. The study was published online Oct. 13 in the journal mBio. Because caramel has a low ... Read more

Related support groups: Poisoning, Infectious Gastroenteritis, Meningitis - Listeriosis

Company to Destroy 265 Tons of Ice Cream Over Listeria Contamination

Posted 28 Apr 2015 by

TUESDAY, April 28, 2015 – Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams said Tuesday it will destroy more than 265 tons of ice cream because of possible contamination with listeria. Just last week, the bacteria was found in the company's production facility and in products. In the wake of that discovery, the ice cream maker recalled all its products from retailers and shuttered ice cream shops in six states. That many tons of ice cream would fill 15 tractor-trailer trucks, and the move will cost the Columbus, Ohio-based company more than $2.5 million, Jeni's CEO John Lowe told the Associated Press Tuesday. Another ice cream maker recalled all of its products last week after some half gallons of ice cream tested positive for listeria. Texas-based Blue Bell Creameries closed facilities in three states for intensive cleaning after the bacteria was discovered, the AP reported. In the case of Blue Bell, three ... Read more

Related support groups: Gastroenteritis, Meningitis - Listeriosis

2nd U.S. Ice Cream Maker Pulls All Products After Listeria Threat

Posted 24 Apr 2015 by

FRIDAY, April 24, 2015 – For the second time this week, a major U.S. manufacturer of ice cream has recalled all of its products because of possible contamination with the bacteria listeria. Ohio-based Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams said Thursday that it was recalling all of its ice creams, sorbets and ice cream sandwiches, and temporarily closing all of its scoop shops. The company said in a statement that it took the action after possible listeria contamination was found in one random sample that had been tested by the Nebraska Department of Agriculture. The company said it wasn't aware of any illnesses caused by its products, and added that it issued the recall "out of an abundance of caution." Listeria – officially known as Listeria monocytogenes – is a bacteria that can cause stomach illness, although it typically does not cause severe illness in healthy people. However, it can pose ... Read more

Related support groups: Meningitis - Listeriosis

Ice Cream Maker Pulls All Products After Listeria Outbreak

Posted 21 Apr 2015 by

TUESDAY, April 21, 2015 – Blue Bell Creameries said Monday that it will pull all of its frozen dessert products off the market because they might be contaminated with a bacteria that can cause stomach illness. So far, tainted ice cream made by Blue Bell has been linked to five illnesses and three deaths in Texas and Kansas, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And new tests have revealed that half-gallons of chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream produced on two dates in March contained Listeria monocytogenes, the Brenham, Texas-based company said in a statement. "This means Blue Bell has now had several positive tests for listeria in different places and plants," the company said. "At this point, we cannot say with certainty how listeria was introduced to our facilities, and so we have taken this unprecedented step." Blue Bell distributes frozen desserts to ... Read more

Related support groups: Meningitis - Listeriosis

CDC Report Shows Bacterial Meningitis Cases on the Decline

Posted 25 May 2011 by

WEDNESDAY, May 25 – The incidence of bacterial meningitis dropped by 31 percent between 1998 and 2007, new government research shows. The drop was led by reductions in infections by two powerful germs – Neisseria meningitidis and Streptococcus pneumoniae – that are covered by available immunizations. With fewer infections among young children, the burden of the disease is now mainly borne by older adults, the study authors found. "The good news is that fewer people are getting bacterial meningitis. The bad news is that if you get it, it's still a very serious infection," said study co-author Dr. Cynthia Whitney, chief of the bacterial respiratory diseases branch at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta. "There are still at least 4,000 cases a year, including about 500 that are fatal," she noted. Results of the study are published in the May 26 issue of the ... Read more

Related support groups: Meningitis, Meningitis - Meningococcal, Meningitis - Pneumococcal, Meningococcal Meningitis Prophylaxis, Meningitis - Haemophilus influenzae, Waterhouse-Friderichsen Syndrome, Meningitis - Streptococcus Group B, Meningitis - Listeriosis, Meningitis - Lymphomatous, Haemophilus influenzae Prophylaxis

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