Acetaminophen is a common pain reliever and fever reducer commonly used to treat back pain, but a newly published study in The Lancet has found that it is no better than a placebo for this purpose. Acetaminophen is sold under brand names such as Tylenol, Anacin and Panadol.
The study involved 1,643 people who suffered from acute lower back pain. The researchers randomly assigned these participants into one of three groups who received two boxes; one box was labeled “regular” and the other “as-needed”. The first group received two boxes, with 500-milligram acetaminophen tablets in the “regular” box as well as acetaminophen in the second “as-needed” box. The second group received one regular box of acetaminophen and an as-needed box containing a placebo. The third group received two boxes of placebo. Continue reading
For police officers and others who took part in World Trade Center rescue and recovery efforts and now suffer cancer caused by toxic exposure, a deadline to register for compensation through the James Zadroga September 11th Victim Compensation Fund (VCF) is less than three months away.
The New York City Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association has alerted its members that those who were diagnosed on or before October 12, 2012 with one of the cancers first recognized by the VCF on that date must register by October 12, 2014, according to The PBA Beat. The newsletter says that members diagnosed on or before October 21, 2013 with prostate cancer must register by October 21, 2015. Members who were diagnosed on or before February 18, 2014 with a “rare cancer” as defined by the WTC Health Program must register by February 18, 2016, and members diagnosed with any of the recognized cancers after the relevant cut-off date above may register up to two years after the date they became ill, but no later than October 3, 2016. Continue reading
According to a study published this week in the Journal of the American Medical Association, the power morcellator, a surgical tool used in about 50,000 hysterectomies a year, may spread cancer.
In a power morcellation procedure, a device cuts uterine tissue into pieces that can be removed through small incisions made during minimally invasive surgery, The New York Times reports. Morcellation is also used to remove fibroid tumors. But recent reports indicate that when a morcellator slices into cancerous tumors the doctor didn’t know existed, the cancer cells can be spread through the woman’s abdomen. And the JAMA study found that undetected tumors are more common than many experts had thought. Continue reading
St. Jude Medical’s Riata and Riata ST defibrillator leads were recalled in the past due to “lead externalizations”, a defect where the wires protrude through the insulation. Now, a Danish study has linked this issue to a higher risk of electrical failures that worsens with time. Continue reading
Late last Friday, a Florida jury awarded $26 billion in punitive damages against R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company in the death of a chain smoker who died of lung cancer at age 36.
The suit was brought by Cynthia Robinson, widow of Michael Johnson Sr., who died in 1996. He had smoked for more than 20 years, beginning around age 13. The lawsuit argued that Reynolds had deliberately concealed the health hazards of Kool cigarettes, Johnson’s brand, The New York Times reports. The jury first awarded $17 million in compensatory damages and then the staggering $23.6 billion in punitive damages. Continue reading
California officials have shut-down 11 oil and gas waste water injection sites in the Central Valley and ordered a review of more than 100 others, fearing that energy companies may have been pumping fracking fluids and other toxic waste into drinking water aquifers.
The Division of Oil and Gas and Geothermal Resources issued cease and desist orders on July 7 to seven energy companies warning that they may be injecting waste into drinking water sources. The waste water disposal “poses danger to life, health, property, and natural resources,” the investigative journalism organization ProPublica reports. Continue reading
Powdered caffeine sold in bulk over the internet is dangerous and should be avoided, warned the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The agency’s warning follows the death of an Ohio teenager who died after using the product, NBC News reports.
Logan Stiner, 18, of La Grange, Ohio consumed powdered caffeine and died on May 27th, according to NBC News.
The FDA warns that powdered caffeine may be particularly appealing to teenagers and young adults. The agency emphasizes that “These products are essentially 100 percent caffeine. A single teaspoon of pure caffeine is roughly equivalent to the amount in 25 cups of coffee.” Even one teaspoon can be deadly. Continue reading
California-based White & Blue Lion, Incorporated has issued a nationwide recall on all of its tattoo inks, needles, and ink and needle kits over potential bacterial contamination.
Infections may lead to sepsis, which is a potentially deadly infection complication, according to Fox31Denver KDVR, citing the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The inks and needles were sold in kits, as well as separately, by 8Decades and White & Blue Lion, Inc. Sales were nationwide and through direct and online sales. One illness has been tied to use of the recalled inks and needles, to date. Continue reading
Walgreens Company has been accused of overcharging consumers more than what is legally allowed for making copies of their medical records.
Based in Deerfield, Illinois, Walgreens is the largest drug retailer in the United States, operating 9,000 stores nationwide and in Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Guam, as of the first-quarter of 2014. Now, at least one civil action has been brought accusing the retailer of charging consumers too much for copying medical records and of Walgreens being in violation of state laws. Continue reading
The criticism surrounding the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) continues to grow, with reports that veterans who have cancer are waiting much too long for treatment. CNN recounts the story of Sgt. Terry Mitchell, who survived the Vietnam War and exposure to Agent Orange. His wife, Vicki Mitchell, believes that he died because of delays in care at the VA. Continue reading