After taking Tylenol when she felt sick on vacation, an Indiana woman suffered a serious skin reaction like burns, over 40 percent of her body, and doctors are fighting to save her eyesight.
Stricken while vacationing near Bowling Green, Kentucky, Donna Emley, of Fort Wayne, Indiana, was diagnosed with Stevens-Johnson syndrome, a serious disorder of the skin and mucous membranes. Stevens-Johnson is usually a reaction to medication or an infection, according to the Mayo Clinic. Emley was sent to the burn unit at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville for treatment. Continue reading
Following the tragic deaths of two toddlers, Ikea is warning of the risks with its chests and dressers. Associated Press reports that Ikea chests resulted in fatal injuries when they tipped over and fell on two boys last year. The Swedish company is warning that the 27 million chests and dressers should be kept away from children if they are not mounted to a wall. CPSC spokesman Scott Wolfson said “They are unstable when built and used without a wall anchoring device,” according to AP. Consumers who have the furniture can obtain a free kit from Ikea for mounting to a wall; the kit will be available for consumers who purchased chests and dressers above specific heights.
In February 2014, a Malm six-drawer chest fell on a two-year-old boy in West Chester, Pennsylvania; he was fatally pinned against his bed. A three-drawer Malm chest fatally injured a 23-month old boy from Snohomish, Washington when it fell over. Continue reading
In a time when ever-increasing numbers of Americans rely on medical devices, legislation currently before Congress could weaken the standards the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) uses to determine a device’s safety and efficacy.
The 21st Century Cures Act would allow devices to reach the market using case-study evidence rather than clinical trial results to demonstrate the device’s safety and effectiveness. Current approval process requires one clinical trial (new drugs, in contrast, usually require two trials). Writing in an op-ed piece in the New York Times, cardiologists Rita Redberg and Sanket S. Dhruva warn that medical devices, some of which are permanently implanted in the patient’s body, should have stricter approval requirements. Only a small minority of medical devices undergo randomized, controlled, blinded clinical studies—considered the gold standard in trials. Continue reading
On September 24, 2015, the Obstetrics and Gynecology Devices Panel of the Medical Devices Advisory Committee of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will meet to discuss the risks and benefits of Bayer HealthCare’s Essure birth control system.
The panel will seek expert scientific and clinical opinion on the risks and benefits of the Essure, a method for nonsurgical permanent female sterilization, and will hear testimony from doctors and scientists, as well as from women who have had the device implanted. The committee will evaluate scientific evidence about the safety and effectiveness of the Essure System, including perforation/migration of the device, device removal, chronic pain, allergic reactions, unintended pregnancy, and ectopic pregnancy. The committee will provide recommendations to the FDA about appropriate use of the device, product labeling, and the potential need for additional postmarket clinical studies. Continue reading
Ashley Madison, an online dating service with the slogan “Life is Short. Have an Affair,” reports that the site has been breached and hackers have obtained personal data about the service’s millions of members.
The Impact Team, the name given by the group behind the attack, said they had stolen information on Ashley Madison’s 37 million members. The group has leaked a portion of the data and said it will release all if the site is not shut down, the New York Times reports. Continue reading
A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association shows an increased risk of melanoma for men who use the erectile dysfunction drug Viagra.
Men who use Viagra have almost twice the melanoma risk, according to a study, CBSMiami reports. Researchers followed 25,000 thousand male health care professionals were followed for ten years as part of the research, tracking which men developed melanoma and whether they used Viagra (sildenafil). Continue reading
A study by researchers from the University of Pennsylvania and Columbia University indicates that people who live near hydraulic fracturing drilling sites have a higher rate of hospitalizations for such issues as heart conditions, neurological illnesses, and cancer.
The research team was drawn from Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health, the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, and the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine. Their findings were based on analyses of hospitalization data for three Pennsylvania counties, and the article was published online last week in the journal PLOS One. Continue reading
New Study Warns of Increased Bleeding Risk In Patients with Combined Use of Antidepressants and NSAIDs
Results of a new study from a research team in Korea indicate that the combined use of antidepressants and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), a common form of painkiller, is associated with an increased risk of intracranial bleeding.
The authors write that the increased risk can occur soon after the combined use of the drugs begins, Medical News Today reports. The study, published in The BMJ, compared the risk of bleeding inside the skull (intracranial hemorrhage) among patients taking antidepressants with NSAIDs and without. Continue reading
A recent ruling by the New Jersey Supreme Court has extended the state’s whistleblower protections to employees whose jobs entail identifying health and safety risks.
The court ruled unanimously to affirm an appeals court ruling that said whistleblower protections included watchdog employees, NJ Spotlight reports. Justice Jaynee LaVecchia wrote the 38-page decision. Continue reading
After reviewing new safety information, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has requested drug makers to strengthen warnings that common painkillers like Motrin, Aleve, and Advil can increase the risk of a heart attack or stroke.
These painkillers—nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs—are widely used in both prescription and over-the-counter formulas to treat pain and fever from conditions such as menstrual cramps, headaches, colds, and the flu, and in the long-term treatment of arthritis. Continue reading