Health Highlights: Aug. 4, 201008/04/10
Here are some of the latest health and medical news
developments, compiled by the editors of
Loving Siblings Help Shield Against Depression: Study
For young people, having a loving sibling encourages behaviors
such as kindness and generosity and helps protect against
delinquency and depression, says a new study.
In fact, the influence of siblings is twice as strong as parents
when it comes to good behaviors such as being nice to people,
volunteering, and doing favors for others,
USA Today reported.
Having a sister seemed even more beneficial than having a
brother, the study found, perhaps because females more often adopt
a caregiving or listening role, according to the researchers.
"Siblings matter even more than parents do in terms of promoting being kind to others and being generous," added study author Laura Padilla-Walker, an assistant professor in the School of Family Life at Brigham Young University.
She and her colleagues examined 395 Seattle families with two
more children, including at least one child between ages 10-14,
USA Today reported.
The study was published in the
Journal of Family Psychology.
Large Drop In Heart Bypass Surgery Deaths: U.S. Report
The proportion of Americans who died in hospital after having
heart bypass surgery decreased 43 percent between 2000 and 2006,
from 42 to 24 per 1,000, according to a federal government
The largest decrease (92 percent) occurred in rural hospitals,
but they still had a higher death rate (38 per 1,000) in 2006 than
other hospitals. Suburban hospitals near large metropolitan areas
had the lowest rate (21 per 1,000), says the latest
News and Numbers from the Agency for Healthcare Research and
Among the other findings:
- In 2006, women had a higher death rate than men -- 35 vs. 20
- The only increases in heart bypass surgery death rates were
reported by hospitals in counties with small cities (fewer than
50,000 residents). In those hospitals, the rate increased from 28
to 31 per 1,000.
- Uninsured patients had the lowest death rate in 2006 (23 per
1,000), followed by privately insured (24), Medicare (24.5) and
Medicaid patients (28).
Iams and Eukanuba Dry Dog Foods Recalled
Certain types of Iams and Eukanuba dry dog foods are being
recalled because they may be contaminated with salmonella, says
Procter & Gamble.
Humans are at risk because they can get salmonella from infected
dogs. The company said there haven't been any reported cases of
salmonella but recommended consumers discard the dog food, said
The recalled products, sold at retailers and veterinary offices,
- Iams Veterinary Dry Formulas, all sizes and varieties
- Eukanuba Custom Care Sensitive Skin, all dry sizes
- Eukanuba Pure, all sizes and varieities
- Eukanuba Naturally Wild, all sizes and varieties
Proctor & Gamble recently recalled certain prescription cat
foods that may have been contaminated with salmonella,
CBS News reported.
New Rules Would Improve Medical Device Safety: FDA
Proposed new rules to tighten oversight of medical devices were
released Tuesday by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Under the recommendations, companies that make medical devices
ranging from X-ray machines and drug pumps to heart pacemakers
would have to submit more safety information to win federal
Associated Press reported.
In addition, the FDA would have greater power to revoke approval
for products that prove unsafe or ineffective.
The recommendations were drafted by two internal FDA panels in
response to intense criticism of the agency's medical devices
division by public health advocates and lawmakers, the
The FDA will accept public comments about the recommendations
for 90 days. Some critics said they would have liked stronger
action from the agency.
"The good news is that I think the agency is admitting there are loopholes in the system that have allowed products to be sold that aren't safe, the bad news is they haven't yet figured out what to do about it," Dr. Diana Zuckerman, president of the National Research Center for Women & Families, told the AP.
Industry representatives had their concerns, too. AdvaMed, a
leading device industry trade group, said it is in favor of rules
that make device approvals more predictable, but cautioned that
other proposals "could result in significant disruption to a
program that has served patients well for more than 30 years."
7 Hours Of Sleep Optimal For Heart Health: Study
People who sleep fewer or more than seven hours a night are at
increased risk for heart disease, according to a new study.
It included more than 30,000 adults who were healthy at the
start of the study. As they followed the participants, the
researchers found that the risk of developing heart disease was
more than double for those who slept less than five hours a day
(including naps) and 1.5 times greater for those who slept nine
hours or more,
CBS News reported.
The findings were published in the August 1 issue of the journal
It's not clear why sleeping less or more than seven hours a
night increases the risk of heart disease, said the West Virginia
University School of Medicine researchers.
But they suggested it might be helpful for people to discuss
their sleep habits -- including changes in sleep duration -- with
CBS News reported.
Copyright © 2010
. All rights reserved.
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.