/* mobile /* end mobile MEDDESKTOP: August 2007

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Uninsured Children in America, 8.7 million of them

I have been trying to decipher what SCHIP program is and how one qualifies to get the benefits and insure children. What I learned is that politicians (Bush) are thinking that all the Americans are rich or trying to dupe people without having to provide the service by pushing the matter through a mess. Try to understand the following;
"States were told this month that they will no longer be allowed to enroll children whose families earn above 250 percent of the poverty level unless they can prove that they have managed to cover 95 percent of children below 200 percent of the poverty level and unless they require that children who previously had private health insurance wait a full year without coverage before enrolling in the State Children's Health Insurance Program."
I do not like to delve in politics. But when it comes to children, I only can say STUPID to people who does thing like this.
I am not not going to write anymore but will direct you to some articles that I thought were well written. Again the risk of parents dropping private coverage to sign up for SCHIP is greater for parents with higher incomes. But there is a risk, too, when society allows children to remain uninsured.

Number of Uninsured Americans Hits Record High

Americans Without Health Benefits Rose to 47 Million (Update2)


Friday, August 24, 2007

West Nile Virus rampant in Canadian Prairies

The number of cases of West Nile virus on the Prairies has exploded. And some experts are warning the worst is yet to come.The latest figures show at least 386 Canadians have been infected. In Manitoba, the number of cases has doubled to 213. That's almost twice as many as the figures for the entire country last year.Of the new cases in Manitoba, 18 were identified by Canadian Blood Services routine screening. The donated blood units were discarded as planned.Two West Nile virus-related deaths were reported in Manitoba earlier this month; West Nile was the likely cause of death in one of the cases and is suspected in the other.Many of the cases begin identified now were like contracted weeks ago. Peak exposure to west Nile is late July to mid-August and the infection can take up to three weeks to surface.

West Nile Virus rampant in Canadian Prairies

FDA Approves Updated Warfarin (Coumadin) Prescribing Information

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced today the approval of updated labeling for the widely used blood-thinning drug, Coumadin, to explain that people's genetic makeup may influence how they respond to the drug.

Manufacturers of warfarin, the generic version of Coumadin, are to add similar information to their products' labeling, FDA said.

The labeling change highlights the opportunity for healthcare providers to use genetic tests to improve their initial estimate of what is a reasonable warfarin dose for individual patients. Testing may help optimize the use of warfarin and lower the risk of bleeding complications from the drug.

These labeling updates are based on an analysis of recent studies that found people respond to the drug differently based, in part, on whether they have variations of certain genes.

FDA estimates that 2 million persons start taking warfarin in the United States every year to prevent blood clots, heart attacks and stroke. Warfarin is a difficult drug to use because the optimal dose varies and depends on many risk factors including a patient's diet, age, and the use of other medications.

Patients who take a dose larger than they can tolerate are at risk of life-threatening bleeding. Those who receive too low a dose are at risk of equally dangerous blood clots. Dosing is particularly important at the beginning of therapy, when problems in adjusting the dose can lead to complications such as bleeding.

Warfarin is the second most common drug – after insulin –implicated in emergency room visits for adverse drug events.

Physicians and other health care professionals who prescribe warfarin regularly check to see if the drug is working properly by ordering a test called the PT or prothrombin time that evaluates the blood's ability to clot properly. The results are measured in seconds and compared with the expected value in healthy people, known as the International Normalized Ratio or INR.

"Today's approved labeling change is one step in our commitment to personalized medicine. By using modern science to get the right drug in the right dose for the right patient, FDA will further enhance the safety and effectiveness of the medicines Americans depend on," said Commissioner of Food and Drugs Andrew C. von Eschenbach, M.D.

The FDA's "personalized medicine" initiative makes use of pharmacogenomics—the science that predicts a response to drugs based upon a person's genetic makeup. This effort supports the personalized health program spearheaded by Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt.

A person's genes "encode" enzymes and differences in the sequence of a gene can cause differences in enzyme activity or sensitivity. That is why different people process the same drug differently.

One-third of patients receiving warfarin metabolize it quite differently than expected. Research has shown that some of the unexpected response to warfarin depends on a patient's variants of the genes CYP2C9 and VKORC1.

"Although genetic testing can currently identify who has these genetic variants, more studies are needed to explore the precise starting dose for these patients," said Larry Lesko, Ph.D., director of the FDA's Office of Clinical Pharmacology. "FDA has been working with other government agencies and organizations to develop such studies under the auspices of our three-year-old Critical Path Initiative, which addresses the challenges of moving promising medical products from discovery to patient use."

FDA's Critical Path Initiative has funded a research project with the University of Utah and the Critical Path Institute of Tucson, Ariz., to develop genetically based instructions for warfarin dosing. The Initiative has also facilitated meetings and planning with the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute for a clinical trial that will study warfarin dosing based on genetic test information and is helping to pay for another clinical study being conducted by Harvard Partners that will derive personalized warfarin dosing algorithms for patients new to the drug.

The dosage and administration of warfarin must be individualized for each patient according to the particular patient's PT/INR response to the drug. The specific dose recommendations are described in the warfarin product labeling, along with the new information regarding the impact of genetic information upon the initial dose and the response to warfarin. Ongoing warfarin therapy should be guided by continued INR monitoring.

Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. of Princeton, N.J., is the manufacturer of Coumadin.

For more information see New Labeling Information for Warfarin.

FDA defines SPF, "sunburn protection factor" not "sun protection factor"

FDA Proposes New Rule for Sunscreen Products Highlights Include New UVA Rating System, Sun Warning Information
Scroll down for FDA Proposal and links.
The proposal w
hen finalized, the proposed regulation would amend the existing OTC sunscreen rule published in 1999 that established regulations related to UVB light and mandated that OTC UVB sunscreen products be labeled with a SPF. FDA also is amending its existing 1999 rule to increase the SPF from SPF30+ to SPF50+. Previously, FDA had recognized SPF values up to 30+. Under the proposed amendment, the range would be SPF2 to SPF50+. SPF50 provides more UVB protection than lower SPF values. Additionally, the proposed rule:
  • revises the existing SPF (UVB) testing procedures;
  • allows new combinations of active ingredients; and
  • asks for comments on the issue of nanoparticles.
he new proposal
Consumers have 90 days in which to comment on the new proposed standards.

Manufacturers will be given 12 months to comply to the new standards once they come into force, so consumers should not expect to see the new labeling before then.
Besides this, the term "sun protection factor" will have to be replaced by the term "sunburn protection factor." in order to avoid the misconception of a user of being absolutely invincible against the sun and the ensuing false sense of security.

A dermatologist who specializes in skin cancer who practises St Petersburg in Florida, Dr James Spencer, told the New York Times the new standards are good news for consumers:

"Now when you go to the drugstore and buy sunscreen, you will finally know what you are getting."

Dr Perry Robins, President of the Skin Cancer Foundation (sponsored among others by the cosmetics industry) also welcomed the news, saying that over 90 per cent of skin cancers are caused by sun exposure and:

"We now know that UVA plays a very direct role in skin cancer comparable to that of UVB. Therefore, introducing a UVA test method will enable consumers to know how well the product protects against UVA rays as well as UVB rays."

Skin cancer is cancer that forms in the tissues of the skin. There are mainly two types, both of which usually result from exposure to sunlight. One type of cancer is when the cells that form pigment become cancerous, this is called melanoma. The other type of skin cancer develops in cells that do not form pigment and there are two types of these cells: basal (small and round cells in the base of the outer layer of skin) and squamous (flat cells on the surface of the skin).

Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States. More than 1 million new cases are diagnosed every year.


FDA Release.
FDA Proposes New Rule for Sunscreen Products Highlights Include New UVA Rating System, Sun Warning Information

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today proposed a new regulation that sets standards for formulating, testing and labeling over-the-counter (OTC) sunscreen drug products with ultraviolet A (UVA) and ultraviolet B (UVB) protection.

"For more than 30 years, consumers have been able to identify the level of UVB protection provided by sunscreens using only sunburn protection factor or SPF values," said Andrew C. von Eschenbach, M.D., Commissioner of Food and Drugs. "Under today's proposal, consumers will also now know the level of UVA protection in sunscreens, which will help them make informed decisions about protecting themselves and their children against the harmful effects of the sun."

Sunlight is composed of the visible light that we can see, and ultraviolet (UV) light that we can not. There are two types of UV light, UVA and UVB. UVA light is responsible for tanning and UVB for sunburn. Both can damage the skin and increase the risk of skin cancer.

The proposed regulation creates a consumer-friendly rating system for UVA products designed to help consumers identify the level of UVA protection offered by a product. The FDA proposal provides a ratings system for UVA sunscreen products on a scale of one to four stars. One star would represent low UVA protection, two stars would represent medium protection, three stars would represent high protection, and four stars would represent the highest UVA protection available in an OTC sunscreen product. If a sunscreen product does not provide at least a low level (one star) of protection, FDA is proposing to require that the product bear a "no UVA protection" marking on the front label near the SPF value.

Ratings would be derived from two tests the FDA proposes to assess the effectiveness of sunscreens in providing protection against UVA light. The first test measures a product's ability to reduce the amount of UVA radiation that passes through it. The second test measures a product's ability to prevent tanning. This test is nearly identical to the SPF test used to determine the effectiveness of UVB sunscreen products.

In addition, a "Warnings" statement in the "Drug Facts" box will be required of all sunscreen product manufacturers. The warning will say: "UV exposure from the sun increases the risk of skin cancer, premature skin aging, and other skin damage. It is important to decrease UV exposure by limiting time in the sun, wearing protective clothing, and using a sunscreen." The warning is intended to increase awareness that sunscreens are only one part of a sun protection program.

"Many consumers incorrectly believe that the only way to protect themselves from skin damage caused by the sun is to apply sunscreens," said Douglas Throckmorton, M.D., deputy director of FDA's Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. "The labeling being proposed today strengthens the existing labeling for sunscreens by educating consumers on the added importance of limiting their time in the sun and wearing protective clothing as part of a sun protection regimen."

When finalized, the proposed regulation would amend the existing OTC sunscreen rule published in 1999 that established regulations related to UVB light and mandated that OTC UVB sunscreen products be labeled with a SPF. FDA also is amending its existing 1999 rule to increase the SPF from SPF30+ to SPF50+. Previously, FDA had recognized SPF values up to 30+. Under the proposed amendment, the range would be SPF2 to SPF50+. SPF50 provides more UVB protection than lower SPF values. Additionally, the proposed rule:

  • revises the existing SPF (UVB) testing procedures;
  • allows new combinations of active ingredients; and
  • asks for comments on the issue of nanoparticles.

FDA is accepting comments on the new rule for 90 days until November 26, 2007. Comments must be identified with Docket No. 1978N-0038 and can be submitted electronically or in written form. Electronic submissions can be submitted at the following Web sites:

Federal eRulemaking Portal: www.regulations.gov
FDA Web site: www.fda.gov/dockets/ecomments


Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Health warning to Seniors, you might be out of Medicare Advantage

WASHINGTON, D.C. · August 03, 2007 / PRNewswire / – Three million seniors could lose their Medicare Advantage coverage, while millions more would face benefit cuts and higher out-of-pocket health care costs under legislation passed today by the U.S. House of Representatives.

Noting that 49 percent of Medicare Advantage beneficiaries have incomes of less than $20,000 per year, Karen Ignagni, President and CEO of America's Health Insurance Plans (AHIP), said the legislation would have a devastating impact on seniors' health security.

"The House bill shreds the safety net for millions of seniors who depend on Medicare Advantage," said Ignagni.

In testimony before the Ways and Means Committee last week, Peter Orszag, Director of the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, said that Medicare Advantage enrollment would fall by 33 percent under the legislation passed today by the House.

A study from an independent researcher and former senior health care official in the Clinton Administration, Ken Thorpe, estimates that the proposed cuts would result in 3.2 million seniors losing their Medicare Advantage coverage and that Medicare Advantage would no longer be available to seniors in 22 states. Seniors in these states would have to enroll in the fee-for-service Medicare program, where they would likely receive fewer benefits and pay higher out-of-pocket costs than they do in Medicare Advantage.

AHIP also reiterated its support for strengthening the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP), which is a key element of AHIP's comprehensive proposal to cover the uninsured. AHIP has run advertisements in support of raising tobacco taxes to finance SCHIP and joined with a diverse group of national organizations to promote the program through the Health Coverage Coalition for the Uninsured.

America's Health Insurance Plans –
Providing Health Benefits to More Than 200 Million Americans

Contact Info

Mohit Ghose
(202) 778-8494

Related Links

www.ahip.org
www.medicarechoices.org

Related Documents

National MA Fact Sheet
Medicare's Long-Term Financial Picture
MA Highlights

Saturday, August 18, 2007

FDA Warns on Codeine Use by Nursing Mothers

FDA Alert [8/17/2007]: FDA has important new information about a very rare, but serious, side effect in nursing infants whose mothers are taking codeine and are ultra-rapid metabolizers of codeine. These babies may be at increased risk for morphine overdose.

When physicians prescribe codeine-containing drugs to nursing women, they should inform their patients about the potential risks and the signs of morphine overdose. Nursing women taking codeine need to carefully watch their infants for signs of morphine overdose and seek medical attention immediately if the infant develops increased sleepiness (more than usual), difficulty breastfeeding or breathing, or decreased tone (limpness). Nursing mothers may also experience overdose symptoms such as extreme sleepiness, confusion, shallow breathing or severe constipation. When prescribing codeine to nursing mothers, physicians should choose the lowest effective dose for the shortest period of time and should closely monitor mother-infant pairs.

Drug metabolism is a complex process involving multiple genetic, environmental and physiologic factors. Limited evidence suggests that individuals who are ultra-rapid metabolizers (those with a specific CYP2D6 genotype) may convert codeine to its active metabolite, morphine, more rapidly and completely than other people. In nursing mothers, this metabolism can result in higher than expected serum and breast milk morphine levels. One published case report of an infant death raises concern that nursing babies may be at increased risk of morphine overdose if their mothers are taking codeine and are ultra-rapid metabolizers of the drug.
FDA News on Codeine use.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Turn your leftover IVF embryos into personalized stem-cell lines.

A biotech company offers to turn unused IVF embryos into personalized stem-cell lines.

Couples who have had children via in vitro fertilization are often left with extra embryos--and the rather difficult decision of what to do with them. Embryos can be donated to research or to other couples, destroyed, or left languishing in frozen storage. But now a California-based biotech startup is offering a new option: to use these embryos to create personalized stem-cell lines for couples or their families.

TR Blog: A New Use for Your Leftover Embryos

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Toy recalls in Japan too by Tomy

Update;

The mattel.com site does not seem to support Firefox properly. IE works fine. I have provided individual links below.

What do you do if you suspect you have a recalled toy?

The first step is for consumers to determine if they have a toy that has been affected by the recall. To do so, they can visit www.service.mattel.com (Check links Below)where they will find a complete list of each toy recalled, including color photos and toy model numbers. You can locate toy model numbers on the bottom of most recalled toys. You also can compare the images.

From there, you are prompted to fill out a form and Mattel will send them (via email or to a postal address) a color brochure with photos and toy numbers of every affected product, as well as a pre-paid mailing label for return of the products.

Once Mattel receives a consumer’s returned, affected products, Mattel will send the consumer a voucher for each affected product for the product’s original value. Vouchers may be used at most national retailers and are good toward any Mattel or Fisher-Price manufactured product.

Direct links by type of recall
Mattel Playsets with Magnet Hazard Recall
Barbie® Doll and Tanner™ Magnet Hazard Recall
Pixar Cars Sarge Lead Paint Hazard Recall
Fisher-Price Toys with Lead Paint Hazard Recall


For People without Internet access (Please inform you neighbors), or for those preferring phone support, they may call the following hotlines dedicated to the different product recalls:



  • “CARS” Sarge character diecast vehicle Recall Hotline: 1-800-916-4997
  • Fisher-Price Toy Lead Paint Recall Hotline: 1-800-916-4498
  • Magnet Hazard Recall Hotline: 1-888-597-6597




TOKYO, Aug 16 (Reuters) - Japanese toy maker Tomy Co. (7867.T: Quote, Profile, Research) said on Thursday it will voluntarily recall Mattel Inc. (MAT.N: Quote, Profile, Research) die-cast cars following the U.S. toy giant's massive recall of toys made in China due to lead paint.

Tomy officials were not immediately available for comment, but in a statement posted on its Web site, Tomy said its subsidiary will recall "Sarge" die-cast toy cars it imported and sold in Japan since March 1 this year.

Jiji news agency reported 2,730 Matchbox cars will be recalled.

Tomy said it has not received any reports of health hazards from customers.

Mattel, the world's largest toy maker, has recalled millions of toys made in China due to lead paint and hazards from small, powerful magnets that can be swallowed and cause injury.

Reuters News

Public Health Advisory -- Nonprescription Cough and Cold Medicine Use in Children

Federal Register Meeting Notice PDF document

FDA announced today that, in October, the Nonprescription Drugs Advisory Committee will discuss the safety and effectiveness of cough and cold drug product use in children. Questions have been raised about the safety of these products and whether the benefits justify any potential risks from the use of these products in children, especially in children under 2 years of age. In preparation for the meeting, FDA is reviewing safety and efficacy data for the ingredients of these products.

Some reports of serious adverse events associated with the use of these products appear to be the result of giving too much of these medicines to children. An over-the-counter cough and cold medicine can be harmful if more than the recommended amount is used, if it is given too often, or if more than one cough and cold medicine containing the same active ingredient are being used. To avoid giving a child too much medicine, parents must carefully follow the directions for use of the product in the “Drug Facts” box on the package label.

What should parents know about using cough and cold products in children?

  • Do not use cough and cold products in children under 2 years of age UNLESS given specific directions to do so by a healthcare provider.
  • Do not give children medicine that is packaged and made for adults. Use only products marked for use in babies, infants or children (sometimes called “pediatric” use).
  • Cough and cold medicines come in many different strengths. If you are unsure about the right product for your child, ask a healthcare provider.
  • If other medicines (over-the-counter or prescription) are being given to a child, the child’s healthcare provider should review and approve their combined use.
  • Read all of the information in the “Drug Facts” box on the package label so that you know the active ingredients and the warnings.
  • Follow the directions in the “Drug Facts” box. Do not give a child medicine more often or in greater amounts than is stated on the package.
  • Too much medicine may lead to serious and life-threatening side effects, particularly in children aged 2 years and younger.
  • For liquid products, parents should use the measuring device (dropper, dosing cup or dosing spoon) that is packaged with each different medicine formulation and that is marked to deliver the recommended dose. A kitchen teaspoon or tablespoon is not an appropriate measuring device for giving medicines to children.
  • If a measuring device is not included with the product, parents should purchase one at the pharmacy. Make sure that the dropper, dosing cup or dosing spoon has markings on it that match the dosing that is in the directions in the “Drug Facts” box on the package label, or is recommended by the child’s health care provider.
  • If you DO NOT UNDERSTAND the instructions on the product, or how to use the dosing device (dropper, dosing cup or dosing spoon), DO NOT USE the medicine. Consult your healthcare provider if you have questions or are confused.
  • Cough and cold medicines only treat the symptoms of the common cold such as runny nose, congestion, fever, aches, and irritability. They do not cure the common cold. Children get better with time.
  • If a child’s condition worsens or does not improve, stop using the product and immediately take the child to a health care provider for evaluation.
FDA CDER Announcement

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

A Parent's Guide to Kids' Vaccines (FDA)

Vaccines have contributed to a significant reduction in many childhood diseases, such as diphtheria, polio, measles, and whooping cough. It is now rare for American children to experience the devastating effects of these illnesses. Infant deaths due to childhood diseases have nearly disappeared in the United States and other countries with high vaccination coverage. But the germs that cause vaccine-preventable diseases and death still exist, and can be passed on to people who are not protected by vaccines.

Ensuring the safety and effectiveness of vaccines is one of the Food and Drug Administration's top priorities. Vaccines are developed in accordance with the highest safety standards; they must be safe to give to as many people as possible.

Like any medicine, vaccination has benefits and risks, and no vaccine is 100% effective in preventing disease. Most side effects of vaccines are usually minor and short-lived. A child may feel soreness at the injection site or experience a low-grade fever. Serious vaccine reactions are extremely rare, but they can happen. For example, signs of severe allergic reaction can include swelling, itching, weakness, dizziness, and difficulty breathing.

"But parents should also know that the risk of being harmed by a vaccine is much smaller than the risk of serious illness that comes with infectious diseases," says Norman Baylor, Ph.D., Director of the Office of Vaccine Research and Review in FDA's Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research (CBER). "Vaccination is an important step to get children off to a healthy start."

Vaccines may contain live, attenuated (but weakened) or killed (inactivated) forms of disease-causing bacteria or viruses, or components of these microorganisms. They trigger a response by the body's immune system when injected or given by mouth. Vaccines stimulate the body to make antibodies—proteins that specifically recognize and target the disease-causing bacteria and viruses, and help eliminate them from the body.

CBER is the part of FDA that regulates vaccines in the United States. CBER works with other agencies to study and monitor vaccine safety and effectiveness.

Steps to Take When You Vaccinate

Review the vaccine information sheets. These sheets explain to vaccine recipients, their parents, or their legal representatives both the benefits and risks of a vaccine. Health practitioners are required by law to provide them.

Talk to your doctor about the benefits and risks of vaccines. Learn the facts about the benefits and risks, along with the potential consequences of not vaccinating against certain diseases. Some parents are surprised to learn that children can die of measles, chicken pox, and other vaccine-preventable diseases.

Tell your doctor about bad reactions. Before your child receives a vaccine, tell your doctor if you, your child, or a sibling has ever had a bad reaction to a vaccine. If your child or a sibling has had an allergic reaction or other severe reaction to a dose of vaccine, talk with your health care provider about whether that vaccine should be taken again.

Ask about conditions under which your child should not be vaccinated. This might include being sick or having a history of certain allergic or other adverse reactions to previous vaccinations or their components. For example, eggs are used to grow influenza (flu) vaccines, so a child who is allergic to eggs should not get a flu vaccine.

Report adverse reactions. Adverse reactions and other problems related to vaccines should be reported to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System, which is maintained by FDA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. For a copy of the vaccine reporting form, call 1-800-822-7967, or report online to www.vaers.hhs.gov

Commonly Used Vaccines

Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis (DTaP)

  • What it's for: Protects against the bacterial infections diphtheria, tetanus (Lockjaw), and pertussis (whooping cough). Tripedia, Infanrix and DAPTACEL are licensed for children 6 weeks to 7 years old. Diphtheria can infect the throat, causing a thick covering that can lead to problems with breathing, paralysis, or heart failure. Tetanus can cause painful tightening of the muscles, seizures, and paralysis. Whooping cough causes severe coughing spells and can lead to pneumonia, seizures, brain damage, and death.
  • Common side effects: Mild fever, redness, soreness or swelling at the injection site, fussiness or crying more than usual.
  • Tell your health care provider beforehand if: Your child is moderately or severely ill, or has had a severe reaction to a previous shot or has a known sensitivity to ingredients of the vaccine, including latex, which is used for the stopper vial.

Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis (Tdap) Vaccine

  • What it's for: Boostrix is licensed for use for people ages 10 to 18 years. Adacel is licensed for people ages 11 years and older, up to age 64. Protects against the bacterial infections diphtheria, tetanus (Lockjaw), and pertussis (whooping cough).
  • Common side effects: Mild fever, pain and redness at injection site, headache, tiredness.
  • Tell your health care provider beforehand if: Your child has had any allergic reaction to any vaccine that protects against diphtheria, tetanus, or pertussis diseases, any ingredient contained in the vaccine, or to latex.

Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) vaccine

  • What it's for: Protects against Hib disease, which can cause meningitis (an infection of the covering of the brain and spinal cord), pneumonia (lung infection), severe swelling of the throat, and infections of the blood, joints, bones, and covering of the heart. Approved for children who are at least 2 months old.
  • Common side effects: Redness, warmth or swelling at site of injection, fever.
  • Tell your health care provider beforehand if: Your child is moderately or severely ill, or has ever had a life-threatening allergic reaction to a previous dose of Hib vaccine.

Hepatitis A Vaccine

  • What it's for: Protects against liver disease caused by the hepatitis A virus. Hepatitis A can cause mild "flu-like" illness, jaundice (yellow skin or eyes), severe stomach pains, and diarrhea. A person who has hepatitis A can easily pass the disease to others within the same household. Havrix and VAQTA are licensed for use in children ages 12 months and up.
  • Common side effects: Soreness at the injection site, headache, loss of appetite, tiredness.
  • Tell your health care provider beforehand if: Your child has ever had a severe allergic reaction to a previous dose of the vaccine.

Hepatitis B Vaccine

  • What it's for: Protects against liver disease caused by the Hepatitis B virus. Hepatitis B can lead to liver damage, liver cancer and death. Recombivax HB and Engerix-B are licensed for use in babies at birth.
  • Common side effects: Soreness at injection site and fever.
  • Tell your health care provider beforehand if: Your child is moderately or severely ill or has ever had a life-threatening allergic reaction to baker's yeast used for making bread, or to a previous dose of the vaccine.

Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Vaccine

  • What it's for: Gardasil is licensed for the prevention of cervical cancer, abnormal and precancerous cervical lesions, abnormal and precancerous vaginal and vulvar lesions, and genital warts in females ages 9 to 26.
  • Common side effects: Pain, redness or swelling, itching at the site of injection, dizziness, fainting.
  • Tell your health care provider beforehand if: Your child has had an allergic reaction to yeast or another component of HPV vaccine, or to a previous dose of the vaccine.

Influenza (Flu) Vaccine—Inactivated Shot

  • What it's for: Protects children six months and older against the influenza virus strains contained in the vaccine. Influenza is a contagious respiratory illness caused by the influenza virus. It can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. The influenza viruses that cause disease in people may change every year, so yearly vaccination is needed to reduce the chances of getting sick.
  • Common side effects: Soreness at the injection site, low-grade fever, and aches. The influenza vaccine is made from killed or inactivated influenza viruses, so your child can't get the flu from the flu shot.
  • Tell your health care provider beforehand if: Your child is moderately or severely ill, has ever had an allergic reaction to eggs or to a previous dose of the flu vaccine, or has ever had Gullian-Barre Syndrome (GBS), a serious neurological disorder that can occur either spontaneously or after certain infections. The disorder typically involves weakness in the legs and arms that can be severe.

Influenza (Flu) Vaccine—Live Intranasal

  • What it's for: FluMist is sprayed into both nostrils and protects against flu in healthy children and adolescents ages 5 to 17.
  • Common side effects: Runny nose, headache, vomiting, muscle aches, low-grade fever. This vaccine, which contains weakened viruses, usually doesn't cause illness, because the viruses have lost their disease-causing properties.
  • Tell your health care provider beforehand if: Your child is pregnant, moderately or severely ill, has a weakened immune system, has ever had an allergic reaction to eggs or to a previous dose of the flu vaccine, has a history of asthma or any other history of coughing, wheezing, or shortness of breath, or has a history of Gullian-Barre Syndrome (GBS).

Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR) Vaccine

  • What it's for: Protects against measles, mumps, and rubella in children ages 12 months and up. Measles is a respiratory infection that causes skin rash and flu-like symptoms. It can cause severe disease leading to ear infection, pneumonia, seizures, and brain damage. Mumps causes fever, headache and swollen glands, especially salivary glands. It can also lead to deafness, meningitis (infection of the brain and spinal cord covering), painful swelling of the testicles or ovaries. Rubella, also called German Measles, is an infection of the skin and lymph nodes and can cause arthritis. Rubella infection during pregnancy can lead to birth defects.
  • Common side effects: Fever and mild rash. In rare cases, swelling of the glands in the cheeks or neck.
  • Tell your health care provider beforehand if: Your child is ill or has ever had an allergic reaction to gelatin, the antibiotic neomycin, or a previous dose of the MMR vaccine.

Meningococcal Disease Vaccine

  • What it's for: Menactra is licensed for use in people ages 11 years and older, up to age 55. Menomune is licensed for use in children 2 years and older. These vaccines protect against meningococcal disease, a serious illness caused by a bacteria. It is a leading cause of bacterial meningitis in children 2-18 years old in the United States. Meningitis is an infection of fluid surrounding the brain and the spinal cord.
  • Common side effects: Sore arm, headache, fatigue.
  • Tell your health care provider beforehand if: Your child has had a severe allergic reaction to a previous dose of meningococcal vaccine, has a known sensitivity to vaccine components or latex, which is used in the vial stopper, or has bleeding disorders or a history of Gullian-Barre Syndrome (GBS), a serious neurological disorder that can occur either spontaneously or after certain infections. The disorder typically involves weakness in the legs and arms that can be severe.

Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine

  • What it's for: Prevnar (Pneumococcal 7-valent Conjugate Vaccine) protects infants and toddlers against serious pneumococcal disease, such as meningitis and blood infections, and some ear infections.
  • Common side effects: Redness, tenderness, swelling at injection site, fever, fussiness, drowsiness, loss of appetite.
  • Tell your health care provider beforehand if: Your child is moderately or severely ill, or has ever had an allergic reaction to a previous dose.

Pneumococcal Vaccine Polyvalent

  • What it's for: Pneumovax 23 is licensed for use in children with certain health conditions who are 2 years or older for the prevention of the 23 most prevalent types of pneumococcal bacteria. Pneumococcal disease can lead to serious infections of the blood, the lungs, such as pneumonia, and the covering of the brain (meningitis).
  • Common side effects: Soreness, warmth, redness, swelling at the site of injection.
  • Tell your health care provider beforehand if: Your child is allergic to any component of the vaccine, has a respiratory illness or other active infection, or has severely compromised cardiovascular and/or pulmonary function.

Polio Vaccine

  • What it's for: The inactivated poliovirus vaccine (IPV) protects against the virus that causes polio, an illness that can cause paralysis or death. For children at least 2 months old.
  • Common side effects: Soreness at injection site, muscle aches, low-grade fever.
  • Tell your health care provider beforehand if: Your child has ever had a severe allergic reaction to a previous shot or an allergic reaction to the antibiotics neomycin, streptomycin, or polymyxin B.

Rotavirus Vaccine

  • What it's for: RotaTeq is a live vaccine given by mouth to prevent rotavirus gastroenteritis in infants. This viral infection of the stomach and intestines can cause severe diarrhea, vomiting, and fever, which may lead to serious dehydration. For children who are at least 6 weeks old, but younger than 32 weeks.
  • Common side effects: Mild, temporary diarrhea or vomiting.
  • Tell your health care provider beforehand if: Your child has a known or weakened immune system, is allergic to any of the ingredients of the vaccine, or has ever had an allergic reaction after getting a dose of the vaccine.

Varicella (Chicken Pox) Vaccine

  • What it's for: Varivax (varicella virus vaccine live) protects against chicken pox in people 1 year and older. Chicken pox, which is caused by the varicella-zoster virus, causes itchy blisters and fever. Complications of chicken pox can include skin infection, scarring, brain swelling, and pneumonia.
  • Common side effects: Soreness or swelling at the injection site, fever, mild rash.
  • Tell your health care provider beforehand if: Your child is moderately or severely ill, or has ever had a life-threatening allergic reaction to gelatin, the antibiotic neomycin, or a previous dose of chicken pox vaccine.
For More Information

FDA's Web Page on Vaccines
www.fda.gov/cber/vaccines.htm

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Healthy Google, Google gets hots on your health

Since many a people talk about Google owning you, at least all the information about you, (I got that when I posted about Google Desktop for Linux). It just like worrying about privacy. Anyway I saw a quite a bit of posts on Google and Microsoft getting on health. Google Blogscoped had screenshots, Official Google Blog had Official Google Blog: Health care information matters.
But since I left a comment on gOS, I will direct you to go and see a screen shot and a Photo, and read a bit. Be healthy! Here is the best!

* How do you know you're getting the best care possible? - "There is a lot of material out there about drugs, diseases, procedures and treatments. How do you know what is trustworthy and what isn't? Search is great at finding us places with relevant information, but it is hard to know which links are reliable and which are less so."
Of course go to Meddesktop once it is up, until then try not to die!

Monday, August 13, 2007

Quit Smoking on impulse

"For most smokers, (quitting) is a process, and it may culminate for many people -- more than we thought, if this study proves to be correct -- that they do make a very spontaneous decision," Glynn observed. "But that's in all likelihood the culmination of a series of decisions over a period of years leading to that day."What's unclear in this study, he said, is whether people defined that process as "planned" or "unplanned." So, is quitting on a whim a better strategy? Or is planning a better option for some? "The truth is that we just don't know what the best strategy is," conceded West, who acknowledged that planning may help some smokers quit.
"The most important thing," he added, "is for smokers to realize that if they are experiencing powerful urges or feeling really bad because of withdrawal symptoms, they can help themselves by using nicotine patches or one of the other medications and by using specialist support, either by telephone or face to face."

I second the thought. I have been smoking 15 years and last November I gave up. One Friday I decided not to go to work, did not light the first cigarette of the day, stayed in the bed. (I would smoke a packet of Marlboro a day usually and first one was with first cup of coffee.) By 12:00 noon I was uncomfortable. Got up ate some lunch, had a good drink, a swig of cognac (I get drunk very fast) and watched TV to my sleep. I repeated this till next evening. By then I was a very unhappy person. I also stopped drinking Cognac because it was getting into me. I asked my Girlfriend to drive me to beach on Sunday. It was good! Next morning I got up and went to work.

That was the last time I touched a cigarette. There is a 3/4 full box of cigarettes on my study desk, for las 9 months. I look at it and think how stupid I was to have smoked this nasty thing for so long. Since then I have talked two of my friends to give up smoking. I will continue to do so.

Side effects! I put up about 30 pounds of weight, so please add exercise to your quiting schedule.

The article

Quitting on Impulse May Be Smokers' Best Bet

HealthDay

Yone Minagawa, Worlds oldest person Passes away!


August 14, 2007; (Agence France-Presse) - - The world's oldest person, a Japanese woman who counted eating well and getting rest as her hobbies, has died aged 114, a news report says. Yone Minagawa, a widow who lived in a nursing home but was still sprightly late in life, died "of old age" yesterday, Kyodo News reported.

There was no immediate answer to a telephone call placed to city hall in her town in southern Fukuoka prefecture. Born on January 4, 1893, Mrs. Minagawa was already in her 50's when Japan surrendered in World War II. She had been certified as the world's oldest person by the Guinness Book of World Records after Emma Faust Tillman, the daughter of freed American slaves, died in January. Despite her advanced age, Mrs. Minagawa was said to enjoy eating sweets and counted eating well and getting a good night's sleep as the secrets of her longevity.

Her nursing home said Mrs Minagawa had celebrated becoming the world's oldest person earlier this year with a Western-style lunch of bread, stew, salad and a dessert. Japanese women are the world's oldest living people, in what experts attribute to a traditionally healthy diet and high standard of medical care. Their life expectancy was a record 85.81 years in 2006, according to the Government. Japanese men are the world's second oldest with a life expectancy of 78.8 second only to men in Iceland who on average live to be 79.4

link

Fisher Price Toys Recalled due to Lead Paint

Dozens of some of the biggest-selling toys from Fisher-Price are being recalled in a lead paint scare.

The move follows the discovery of problems with a number of character-based products marketed for children as young as two years old.

The company is recalling 83 types of Chinese-made toys because their paint contains excessive amounts of lead.

Parent company Mattel said no injuries had occurred as a result of the sales, but urged parents to stop children using the affected toys immediately.


Recall
Fisher-Price Toys with Lead Paint Hazard Recall

There has been a recall announcement for Fisher-Price toys representing various Nickelodeon and Sesame Street characters.

Please choose from the following options.
  1. Help me determine if I own product(s) affected by this recall.


  2. Review the recall announcement.


  3. My product is not affected or has already been serviced for this recall; Take me to the home page.


  4. View and print the recall brochure. If you own affected product(s) you will also need to complete the Help me application (if you haven't done so already) to order a prepaid mailing label for the return of those items.



  5. ATTENTION TO CONSUMERS OUTSIDE OF THE UNITED STATES AND CANADA
    The list of products included on this website are ONLY for the recall in the United States and Canada. To determine the recalled products in your county, please contact your local Mattel office or distributor. Please click here to look up the contact information. Additionally, your local retailers that sold the recalled product have received information concerning the recall and can assist you in determining if you own any of the recalled products. You may also find information on your local Fisher-Price website at: http://www.fisher-price.com/intl.asp.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

FDA: Don't Eat Raw Oysters From Washington, Southern Tip of Hood Canal

Friday August 10, 2007 (Foodconsumer.org) -- The Food and Drug Administration Friday issued a warning to advise consumers not to eat raw oysters harvested from an area of the southern tip of Hood canal in Washington after an outbreak of Vibriosis - a food-borne illness.

Raw oysters harvested from growing area 6 in Hood Canal from July 3, 2007 have sickened at least six people in California and Washington. The states are investigating more reports of the illness.

Vibriosis is caused by Vibrio parahaemolyticus bacteria, which can be found occasionally in oysters in the summer. The bacteria wouldn't do too much harm to most people, but in rare cases can it be life-threatening to those with weakened immune systems.

LinkWithin

Related Posts Widget for Blogs by LinkWithin