Health Care

Warning about Dangerous Birth Control Device!

How dangerous does a medical device have to be before the FDA takes action to protect the public? The FDA acknowledges that there are serious risks with using the birth control device called Essure. Essure is a flexible mettle and polyester coil that looks like a small spring. One device is inserted into each Fallopian …

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Repeat After Me: "Did You Wash Your Hands?"

Health writers are very savvy when it comes to medical procedures. They talk with doctors, nurses, and medical researchers daily, and they read medical journals the way the rest of us read Sports Illustrated or People magazines. That’s what makes the opinion piece in the latest issue of The Journal of the American Medical Association …

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Excess Stroke Risk Halts Brain Stent Study

Stents have been used successfully for years in people with atherosclerosis to keep arteries around the heart open and prevent a first, second, or third heart attack. About six years ago, stents were approved for use in the brain, with the hopes of preventing strokes. The brain stents failed miserably. A study designed to test …

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FDA to Restrict Acetaminophen in Pain Medications

Acetaminophen—the active ingredient in Tylenol products—is a popular, over-the-counter pain reliever. Because it is so useful to treat many types of pain, it is often added to prescription narcotic pain medications. Even though you can buy acetaminophen in any supermarket or pharmacy, it is actually a potent drug, capable of causing permanent liver damage if …

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Beware Scam by FDA Impersonators

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued a warning about a scam targeting people who purchase medications over the Internet or via “telepharmacies.” The criminals call the victims and identify themselves as FDA special agents or other law enforcement officials. The scammers tell the victims that purchasing drugs over the Internet or the telephone …

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Abbott Recalls Diabetes Test Strips

Abbott Diabetes Care is recalling about 359 million glucose test strips. The test strips are unable to absorb enough blood for proper monitoring, and this means the strips may give falsely low blood glucose results. If the strips are exposed to warm weather or prolonged storage, they may be more likely to provide a false result. …

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Surgical Mistakes Persist Despite Prevention Measures

These are the kinds of mistakes that make you slap your head in disbelief: Surgeons who operate on the wrong patient or on the wrong part of the body (also known as “wrong site” mistakes). In 2004, hospitals nationwide adopted a Universal Protocol that was supposed to prevent wrong-patient and wrong-site surgeries. The protocol consisted …

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