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Daily MedNews

New Take on Man's Friendship With Fido

Posted today in Daily MedNews

FRIDAY, Aug. 26, 2016 -- Dogs were domesticated earlier than previously believed and in at least two separate locations, a new study indicates. "Most dogs today look like Eastern dogs, this has led to a misconception that the dogs were all domesticated in the East," said study co-author Anna Linderholm, an assistant professor of anthropology at Texas A&M University. An international team of researchers analyzed DNA from 60 bones of dogs that lived between 3,000 and 14,000 years ago across...

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Take Special Care With Hydrogen Peroxide Contact Lens Solution

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FRIDAY, Aug. 26, 2016 -- If you use a contact lens solution with hydrogen peroxide, you need to follow certain steps for safe use, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration says. Before choosing a contact lens solution, talk to your eye care provider about what is the best cleaning and disinfecting method for your contact lenses. Never change your contact lens care system without consulting your provider. Prior to using a new solution, read all the instructions on the box and bottle and follow them...

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FDA Recommends All Blood Donations Be Tested for Zika

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FRIDAY, Aug. 26, 2016 -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommended on Friday that the nation's entire blood supply be routinely screened for the Zika virus. In February, the FDA recommended testing of donated blood and blood components only in areas where Zika was actively spreading, but agency officials now say that universal testing is needed to further protect those who get donated blood. "There is still much uncertainty regarding the nature and extent of Zika virus transmission,"...

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Sex Partner With No Zika Symptoms Transmits Virus: CDC

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FRIDAY, Aug. 26, 2016 -- U.S. health officials report that the Zika virus can be spread sexually even when a partner shows no signs of infection. A Maryland woman who had not traveled to an active Zika area was diagnosed with the virus in June after having condomless sex with a man who had been to the Dominican Republic, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The mosquito-borne virus is circulating in the Dominican Republic, but the man had experienced no Zika...

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First Days of Preseason Practice Pose Big Heat Risks for College Football Players

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FRIDAY, Aug. 26, 2016 -- As college football players trade in their beach towels for helmets and padding, new research shows their risk of developing sports-related heat illness shoots up. In particular, during the first 14 days of preseason play these athletes face a greater than usual risk for a specific type of heat illness called exertional heat illness (EHI). EHI is a serious and potentially life-threatening series of health complications that sometimes unfold when strenuous activity meets...

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Health Highlights: Aug. 26, 2016

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Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay: No Olympics-Linked Zika Cases: WHO There have been no confirmed cases of Zika infection in anyone linked with the Rio Olympics, the World Health Organization said Thursday. Before the games, some experts expressed concerns that the huge event might result in a faster-than-normal spread of the virus because some of the large numbers of foreign athletes and visitors might carry Zika back home,...

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Even a Little Exercise May Help Stave Off Dementia

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FRIDAY, Aug. 26, 2016 -- Couch potatoes have a higher risk of developing dementia in old age, a new study reports. Seniors who get little to no exercise have a 50 percent greater risk of dementia compared with those who regularly take part in moderate or heavy amounts of physical activity, the researchers found. Moderate physical activity can include walking briskly, bicycling slower than 10 miles an hour, ballroom dancing or gardening, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and...

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Hopes Dashed for Rare Bone Cancer Treatment

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FRIDAY, Aug. 26, 2016 -- Adding extra drugs to chemotherapy doesn't benefit patients with a rare type of bone cancer, according to a new study. Osteosarcoma is diagnosed in about 600 people in the United States each year, mostly teenagers. With current treatments, only 65 to 70 percent of patients live three years after diagnosis without relapse or other cancers. Previous research suggested that more aggressive chemotherapy with extra drugs might help some patients, but this new study concluded...

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More Americans Can Afford Medications Under Obamacare: Study

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FRIDAY, Aug. 26, 2016 -- Though a growing number of Americans are able to afford prescription medications, millions still have difficulty, a new study finds. At the recession's height in 2009, over 25 million Americans said they had not filled a prescription in the previous year because they couldn't afford it, the analysis of federal government data showed. That was nearly one in 10 Americans. Between 1999 and 2009, every age group except seniors found prescription drugs increasingly difficult...

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Early Virus Raises Asthma Risk in Certain Kids: Study

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FRIDAY, Aug. 26, 2016 -- A common genetic variation significantly boosts the odds of asthma in children who've had a severe respiratory illness at a young age, researchers report. "Our findings suggest that genetic influences on asthma might be more pronounced in the context of early life environmental exposures, especially viral respiratory infections," said Dr. Rajesh Kumar, an allergist at Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago. He is senior author of the new report. The study involved nearly...

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Doctors Divided on Safety, Use of Electronic Cigarettes

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FRIDAY, Aug. 26, 2016 -- Doctors disagree on the best way to answer patients' questions about electronic cigarettes, a new study finds. They also want more investigation of the devices -- specifically, about the safety of e-cigarettes compared to traditional cigarettes, according to the Stanford University researchers. While traditional cigarettes deliver nicotine when the smoker inhales burning tobacco, e-cigarettes heat liquid nicotine until it vaporizes. Researchers analyzed more than 500...

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Health Tip: Make Sure Kids' Shoes Fit Well

Posted today in Daily MedNews

-- Kids need sturdy, supportive shoes that fit their growing feet. Here are some shoe-shopping suggestions from the American Podiatric Medical Association: Every few months, your child will probably outgrow shoes and socks. Poorly-fitted shoes can irritate your child's feet. Measure feet at each shopping trip, and inspect feet often for signs of irritation. Don't let your child wear secondhand shoes. They may not fit correctly, and may spread fungal infections. Check the heels of your child's...

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Health Tip: Keeping Foods Separate During Grilling

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-- It's important to prevent cross-contamination of food while grilling. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics advises: Make sure your grill is clean before you begin. Remove any leftover food particles. Don't put cooked food back on the same plate that held raw food. Wash with hot soapy water first, or use a different plate. Use separate grilling utensils to turn food once it's cooked, or thoroughly clean utensils after handling raw food. Never use marinade that contained raw meat to baste...

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Many Teens 'Vaping' for Flavor, Not Nicotine

Posted yesterday in Daily MedNews

THURSDAY, Aug. 25, 2016 -- Why are American teens tempted to try an e-cigarette? A new study suggests most are interested in the vaping product's flavoring, not nicotine. A team led by Richard Miech, of the University of Michigan's Institute for Social Research, tracked the responses of nearly 15,000 students who took part in a 2015 U.S. nationwide survey. More than 3,800 of the students -- who were in grades 8, 10 and 12 -- said they had used e-cigarettes at some point. Of those who had used...

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Synthetic Fentanyl Fueling Surge in Overdose Deaths: CDC

Posted yesterday in Daily MedNews

THURSDAY, Aug. 25, 2016 -- Deaths from overdoses of the synthetic narcotic fentanyl have surged in recent years, U.S. health officials say in a troubling new report. As more fentanyl was sold illegally on the streets, the number of fatal overdoses jumped 79 percent in 27 states from 2013 to 2014, the government report found, while law enforcement seizures of the drug increased 426 percent in eight of those 27 states. "Fentanyl is a powerful opioid that is 50 to 100 times more potent than...

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'Pretend Mommy' Program Doesn't Deter Teen Pregnancy

Posted yesterday in Daily MedNews

THURSDAY, Aug. 25, 2016 -- Teens are more, not less, likely to become pregnant if they take part in prevention programs that use lifelike robot babies to demonstrate the realities of motherhood, a new trial shows. Australian girls given a baby simulator for a weekend were 36 percent more likely to become pregnant during their teenage years, compared to girls in a control group who only received standard health education, researchers found. "Unfortunately, and surprising for us, the...

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Amphetamines Polluting Some Urban Streams: Study

Posted yesterday in Daily MedNews

THURSDAY, Aug. 25, 2016 -- Medications and illegal drugs are polluting streams in and around at least one major U.S. city, new research reveals. Scientists say this pollution comes with ecological consequences -- areas in some streams have high enough concentrations of the stimulant amphetamine to alter the bottom of the aquatic food web. "Around the world, treated and untreated wastewater entering surface waters contains pharmaceuticals and illicit drugs that originate from human consumption...

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For Uncontrolled Tremor, Ultrasound Instead of Brain Surgery?

Posted yesterday in Daily MedNews

THURSDAY, Aug. 25, 2016 -- Patients with uncontrolled shaking caused by a condition called essential tremor may get relief with a new noninvasive ultrasound procedure, a study finds. The movement disorder involves involuntary tremors in the hands or feet, and sometimes the voice is shaky, said Dr. Max Wintermark, a professor of neuroradiology at the Stanford Neuroscience Health Center in Palo Alto, Calif. "It's called 'essential' because we don't know what is causing it." In some cases,...

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Autism-Linked Genes Often Differ Between Siblings

Posted yesterday in Daily MedNews

THURSDAY, Aug. 25, 2016 -- In families that have more than one child with autism, the gene variations underlying each child's disorder often differ, new research shows. Researchers have long known that autism is a complex disorder. Experts have suspected that the development of autism involves both genetic susceptibility and environmental exposures that aren't yet fully understood. Now the new study suggests the genetic component is even more complicated than previously thought. "The genetic...

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Survey Says: Hair Transplants Make Men Look Younger

Posted yesterday in Daily MedNews

THURSDAY, Aug. 25, 2016 -- Bad news for the follicularly challenged: A new survey confirms that balding men are seen by others as older and less good-looking. But when the same men got a hair transplant, observers thought of them as younger and more attractive, the study found. The transplant recipients were also rated as more "successful, and approachable than their pre-transplant counterparts by casual observers," said a team led by Dr. Lisa Ishii. She works in the division of facial...

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