Health Highlights: July 5, 201107/05/11
Here are some of the latest health and medical news
developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:
Seeds Linked to E. Coli Outbreak Still Being Sold
European officials said Tuesday that fenugreek seeds linked to a
huge and deadly E. coli outbreak centered in Germany are still
being sold and were distributed to more countries than previously
The European Union has now banned further imports of the seeds
from Egypt until Oct. 31, and all seeds from one Egyptian exporter
received between 2009 and 2011 must be destroyed, the
Associated Press reported.
The lot of contaminated seeds from Egypt blamed for the E. coli
outbreak was imported by one distributor in Germany, but the seeds
were then sold to 54 different companies in Germany and 16
companies in 11 other European countries, according to the European
Food Safety Authority.
Fenugreek seeds are often sold dried. If they are contaminated
with E. coli, the bacteria can survive for years, the
Maker Seeks to Prevent Drug's Use in Lethal Injections
A Danish drug company says it will restrict distribution of its
Nembutal drug to prevent it from being used in lethal injections to
execute prisoners in some U.S. states.
Nembutal is the trade name for Lundbeck's pentobarbital sodium
injection. It's used to treat severe epilepsy but is also used by a
number of states in a three-drug mixture used to execute death row
Agence France-Presse reported.
Lundbeck said Friday that Nembutal will now "be supplied
exclusively through a specialty pharmacy drop ship program that
will deny distribution of the product to prisons in U.S. states
currently active in carrying out the death penalty by lethal
Distributors were notified of the plan in late June,
Paycheck Can Be Dangerous: Study
Payday can be life threatening, according to a new study.
A U.S. researcher looked at four major demographic groups --
military personnel, people receiving tax rebate checks, seniors on
Social Security, and recipients of Alaska's Permanent Fund
dividends -- and found a spike in death rates in the week after
they received their checks,
The largest increases occurred in deaths caused by substance
abuse, external causes (accidents of various kinds), and heart
"After getting paid, people are just more active -- they go out to dinner, head to the store, drive more, go to bars, etc.," said University of Notre Dame economist William Evans, msnbc.com reported. "Some of this behavior is inherently
risky, like drinking too much or driving drunk. Some of the
activity will naturally increase risk -- if you drive more, the
risk of being in a car accident has increased."
"Some of the links are not so obvious," he added. "For example, more activity may spur on a heart attack. And some of it is increased risk taking, as with substance abuse."
The study appears in the
Journal of Public Economics.
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