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Spring-Clean Your Medicine Cabinet to Safeguard Your Kids

Posted 2 days 7 hours ago by Drugs.com

MONDAY, March 20, 2017 – When you learn that just 1 in 5 Americans locks up prescription drugs, it's not surprising to hear that thousands of children are treated for accidental medication overdoses each year. A new Consumer Reports survey of more than 1,000 adults also found that more than one-quarter of Americans hang on to unused drugs "until they're used up." This ups the odds for misuse, too. "People may not realize how dangerous certain medications can be for a child," said Lisa Gill, deputy editor of Consumer Reports Best Buy Drugs. "Pills within easy reach can be as dangerous as a loaded gun, particularly narcotic painkillers, such as OxyContin, Percocet and Vicodin," she said. The bottom line: "If you have these pills at home, and you have children around, we urge you to lock them up," Gill said. The magazine staff also recommends cleaning out your medicine cabinet once a year ... Read more

Related support groups: Xanax, Percocet, OxyContin, Vicodin, Morphine, Alprazolam, MS Contin, Xanax XR, Kadian, M O S, Poisoning, Avinza, Embeda, MSIR, Roxanol, Morphine IR, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Alprazolam Intensol, MS/S, Niravam

Health Highlights: March 13, 2017

Posted 9 days ago by Drugs.com

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

Rising Number of Kids Ill From Drinking Hand Sanitizers: CDC

Posted 2 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, March 2, 2017 – Gel hand sanitizer dispensers are ubiquitous now in American homes and schools, but a new government report suggests a rise in kids getting sick after ingesting the products. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention researchers tracked illnesses from 2011 to 2014 for children aged 12 and under. The investigators believe some kids in the higher age range may be drinking sanitizers because of the products' high alcohol content. "Older children [aged 6-12 years] were more likely to report intentional ingestion and to have adverse health effects and worse outcomes than were younger children, suggesting that older children might be deliberately misusing or abusing alcohol hand sanitizers," wrote the team led by Dr. Cynthia Santos, of the CDC's National Center for Environmental Health. According to the researchers, hand sanitizers often contain up to 60 ... Read more

Related support groups: Poisoning, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Acute Alcohol Intoxication

Health Tip: Use Caution When Applying Hair Dye

Posted 2 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

-- Hair dye contains chemicals that can be absorbed by the skin, so you should be careful when coloring your hair. The American Cancer Society advises: Follow packaging instructions, especially portions containing warnings and precautions. Before dyeing hair, do a patch test to check for a skin reaction. Do this even if you have used the same dye before. Wear gloves when applying dye. Never mix different dyes. Leave the dye on only for the recommended amount of time. Rinse thoroughly. Never dye eyebrows or eyelashes. Read more

Related support groups: Poisoning, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse

As Pot Legalization Advances, Pediatricians Warn of Dangers

Posted 27 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Feb. 27, 2017 – The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is urging doctors to protect children from the harms of marijuana as the nation becomes increasingly tolerant of the drug's use. "Marijuana is not a benign drug, especially for teens. Their brains are still developing, and marijuana can cause abnormal and unhealthy changes," said Dr. Seth Ammerman in an AAP news release. He's one of the authors of a new report by the academy. The authors said the report tries to rebut any perceptions that marijuana is safe, even as 29 states and Washington, D.C. allow its use for medical purposes, recreational use or both. Regular use of pot by kids may contribute to addiction, depression, psychosis, lung problems, memory and attention problems, and impaired driving, the AAP said. The report authors noted that research suggests modern marijuana is stronger than it was 20 years ago. They ... Read more

Related support groups: Smoking, Drug Dependence, Substance Abuse, Poisoning, Cannabis, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse

Does Mercury in Fish Play a Role in ALS?

Posted 20 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Feb. 20, 2017 – Eating mercury-laden seafood may raise the risk of developing ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), preliminary research suggests. The report warns of possible harm from fish containing the most mercury, such as swordfish and shark. It doesn't suggest a higher risk of ALS from general consumption of seafood. "For most people, eating fish is part of a healthy diet," said study author Dr. Elijah Stommel, who's with Dartmouth College's Geisel School of Medicine in Hanover, N.H. "But questions remain about the possible impact of mercury in fish," Stommel said in an American Academy of Neurology news release The study of 500-plus people found that seafood eaters who ate the most mercury-heavy fish may face double the risk of developing ALS. However, the study only established a link between the two, not a cause-and-effect relationship. Mercury is a toxic metal that ... Read more

Related support groups: Poisoning, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Mercury Poisoning

Don't Punish Pregnant Women for Opioid Use, Docs Say

Posted 20 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Feb. 20, 2017 – Prevention and treatment, not legal action, should be the focus when dealing with pregnant women who use opioids, a leading pediatricians' group says. Some states prosecute and jail pregnant women for substance abuse, but the new statement from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) warns that punitive measures have no health benefits for mother or child and may deter women from seeking help. "Over the last two decades, use of opioids surged throughout the U.S., and as they did, we have seen an increase in opioid-related complications in nearly every population, including pregnant women and their infants," statement co-author Dr. Stephen Patrick said in an AAP news release. "Our response should be grounded in public health. We should be bolstering efforts targeted at primary prevention, like prescription drug-monitoring programs, and expanding treatment ... Read more

Related support groups: Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Percocet, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Opiate Dependence, Morphine, Codeine, Lortab, Opiate Withdrawal, Roxicodone, MS Contin, Drug Dependence, Endocet, Kadian, Acetaminophen/Hydrocodone, Cheratussin AC, Delivery, Tylenol with Codeine

Kids' OD Risk Rises When Opioids Left Out at Home

Posted 20 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Feb. 20, 2017 – A child's risk of a potentially fatal drug overdose more than doubles if a parent brings home a prescription opioid painkiller like oxycodone, codeine or morphine, a new study reports. When their mother is prescribed an opioid for pain as opposed to a non-narcotic drug like aspirin, ibuprofen or acetaminophen, young children are about two-and-a-half times more likely to accidentally overdose, the researchers found. "The opioid epidemic has not skipped children," said Dr. Yaron Finkelstein, a pediatric emergency doctor with the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto. "They are also vulnerable to it, even as a third party or innocent bystander." Finkelstein is lead researcher on the study, published online Feb. 20 in Pediatrics. Another study in the journal helps explain the source of some of this risk. Nearly 70 percent of prescription opioids in homes with ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Suboxone, Oxycodone, Back Pain, Hydrocodone, Methadone, Percocet, Tramadol, Chronic Pain, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Fentanyl, Opiate Dependence, Morphine, Aspirin, Codeine, Lortab, Opana, Ibuprofen

Possible Drawback to Gluten-Free: Toxic Metals

Posted 16 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 16, 2017 – America's love affair with gluten-free foods may come at a cost: greater intake of the toxic metals arsenic and mercury, a new study contends. "These results indicate that there could be unintended consequences of eating a gluten-free diet," said study author Maria Argos of the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). Gluten-free products often contain rice flour as a substitute for wheat, rye and barley. And rice is known to accumulate arsenic and mercury from fertilizers, soil and water, said Argos, an assistant professor of epidemiology in the School of Public Health. For the study, the researchers analyzed U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey data from thousands of Americans, aged 6 to 80. The investigators identified 73 people who said they ate a gluten-free diet. Compared to other survey participants, those who ate gluten-free diets had ... Read more

Related support groups: Celiac Disease, Poisoning, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Arsenic Trioxide, Trisenox, Mercury Poisoning

Drinking Peroxide as 'Natural' Cure Leads to Dangerous Blood Clots

Posted 9 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 9, 2017 – Ingesting high-concentration hydrogen peroxide as a "natural cure" or cleansing agent may land you in the emergency room, health experts caution. Of particular concern are alternative drinking "therapies" that proactively promote the health benefits of potent peroxide. These so-called "super water" cures are anything but curative, researchers said, with ingestion leading to heart attack, stroke, and in some cases, death. "Alternative medicine practices are not always safe," said study lead author Dr. Benjamin Hatten. He's currently an assistant professor in the department of emergency medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine. "In addition to the lack of scientific evidence of benefit, ingestion of high-concentration peroxide can be life-threatening. This product is much more dangerous than the household hydrogen peroxide that comes in a brown ... Read more

Related support groups: Ischemic Stroke, Heart Attack, Myocardial Infarction, Poisoning, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Myocardial Infarction - Prophylaxis

Toxic Metals Found in E-Cigarette Liquid

Posted 8 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 8, 2017 – Electronic cigarette liquids can contain high levels of toxic and potentially cancer-causing metals, a new study suggests. "We do not know if these levels are dangerous, but their presence is troubling and could mean that the metals end up in the aerosol that e-cigarette users inhale," said study leader Ana Maria Rule, of Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore. Rule is an assistant scientist in the department of environmental health and engineering. She and her colleagues analyzed the liquid of five brands of so-called first-generation e-cigarettes, which resemble traditional cigarettes. (Newer e-cigarettes look like small cassette recorders with mouthpieces.) The researchers found liquids in those brands contained the heavy metals cadmium, chromium, lead, manganese and nickel. These metals are toxic when inhaled, the researchers said. In ... Read more

Related support groups: Smoking, Smoking Cessation, Nicotine, Poisoning, Nicorette, Nicoderm CQ, Nicotrol Inhaler, Commit, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Habitrol, Lead Poisoning, Nerve Agent Poisoning, Nicotrol TD, Nicorelief, Nicorette DS, Nicotrol NS, ProStep

Pet Meds Sending Kids to the ER

Posted 6 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Feb. 6, 2017 – The flea medications and heartworm pills that millions of Americans give to their beloved pets pose poisoning risks to any children in the home, new research warns. The study authors said just one poison center in Ohio received more than 1,400 calls for poisoning from pet medications over the course of 15 years, with 87 percent of those calls involving children under the age of 5. "We realize that pets are common and an important part of families, especially those with young children," said study co-author Kristi Roberts, from the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. "However, pets often require medications to keep them healthy, and these medications could be dangerous to a child if the child is exposed," she added. Poisoning occurs in several ways, the researchers explained. Toddlers can pick up pills spit ... Read more

Related support groups: Poisoning, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Organophosphate Poisoning

Laundry Detergent Pods Linked to Eye Burn Danger in Kids

Posted 2 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 2, 2017 – Liquid laundry detergent pods may be convenient, but young children are suffering vision-threatening burns from the chemicals inside them in increasing numbers, a new study finds. Between 2012 and 2015, more than 1,200 preschoolers in the United States suffered eye burns from these single-use detergent pods. In 2012, only 12 such burns were reported. By 2015, that number was almost 500. "These pods look like toys, they look like candy, and kids are finding them, playing with them, puncturing them, and the chemicals inside the pods are getting into their eyes," said lead researcher Dr. R. Sterling Haring, from the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore. Injuries most often occur when children play with the detergent pods and they break and the liquid squirts into their eyes. Burns also happen when kids get the soap on their hands ... Read more

Related support groups: Eye Conditions, Poisoning, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Visual Defect/Disturbance

Toxins in Your Fast-Food Packaging?

Posted 1 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 1, 2017 – Many grease-resistant fast-food wrappers and boxes contain potentially harmful chemicals that can leach into food, a new study contends. Testing on more than 400 samples from restaurants nationwide revealed that nearly half of fast-food wrappers and one out of five paperboard food boxes contained detectable levels of fluorine, said lead researcher Laurel Schaider. She's an environmental chemist at the Silent Spring Institute in Newton, Mass. Previous studies have linked some fluorinated chemicals such as perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS) to kidney and testicular cancer, low birth weight, thyroid disease, decreased sperm quality, pregnancy-induced high blood pressure, and immune system problems in children, the study authors said in background notes. Major U.S. manufacturers voluntarily phased out PFOA and PFOS for most uses ... Read more

Related support groups: High Blood Pressure, Hypertension, Thyroid Disease, Renal Cell Carcinoma, Immunosuppression, Poisoning, Premature Labor, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Labor Pain, Testicular Cancer, Hypertensive Heart Disease, Prematurity/Underweight in Infancy

Health Tip: Choosing a Pest Control Service

Posted 23 Jan 2017 by Drugs.com

-- Pests are a nuisance and may be a health hazard. But you're not doing your family any favors by using toxic chemicals inappropriately. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recommends: Get estimates from several recommended companies in your area. Ask questions about their processes. Ask how long each company has been in business at the current location, and check to see if there have been complaints filed against the company. Request a list of references. Ensure that technicians are licensed and certified to use pesticides correctly. Request a copy of pesticide labels and how much is applied during treatment. Read more

Related support groups: Poisoning, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse, Insect Bites, Diethyltoluamide

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Acetaminophen Overdose, Cyanide Poisoning, Organophosphate Poisoning, Anticholinesterase Poisoning, Mercury Poisoning, Nerve Agent Poisoning, Arsenic Poisoning, Ethylene Glycol Poisoning, Methanol Poisoning, Lead Poisoning, Iron Poisoning, Gold Poisoning, Aluminum Toxicity, Toxic Reactions Incl Drug and Substance Abuse