Health Highlights: May 2, 201305/02/13
Here are some of the latest health and medical news
developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:
High Levels of TV Violence Concern Group
The continuing high levels of violence on television shows are
cause for concern, a parents' group says.
The Parents Television Council looked at 392 prime-time scripted
programs shown on broadcast networks between Jan. 11 and Feb. 11
and found that 193 had some incident of violence, the
Along with an increase in gore from other studies it has
conducted over 18 years, the group said the new study found greater
specificity and darkness to the violence.
"There has been no accountability, in my opinion, in terms of the degree and amount of violence," Tim Winter, the group's president, told the AP.
"I think it is only going to get worse," said Dr. Victor Strasburger, a pediatrics professor at the University of New Mexico School of Medicine and an expert on violence in the media. He told the APthat media executives are "not willing to own up to their public health responsibilities."
Parents' Efforts Key to Approval of Drug for Rare Kidney
A new drug to treat a rare and deadly inherited kidney disorder
has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and the
efforts of one patient's parents may have played a key role.
The drug Procysbi is for nephropathic cystinosis. Left
untreated, the disease typically destroys the kidneys by age 10.
Even with a kidney transplant, the condition can lead to death by
The New York Timesreported.
Procysbi is not a totally new drug, but rather a more convenient
and tolerable version of an existing drug for cystinosis called
Cystagon, from Mylan Inc. Cystagon has a strong rotten-egg smell
that causes bad breath and body odor, and also causes nausea,
vomiting and other abdominal problems. It must be taken every six
Procysbi, from Raptor Pharmaceutical Corporation, has the same
active ingredient as Cystagon but can be taken every 12 hours and
parents say it causes less severe body odor, bad breath and
There is a huge price difference between the older and newer
medicines: Cystagon costs about $8,000 a year while Procysbi will
cost about $250,000 a year.
Still, reductions in the noxious side effects, and the
twice-a-day dosing of Procysbi are huge advantages for children
with nephropathic cystinosis, said Nancy Stack, a mother from
Corona del Mar, Calif.
Her daughter Natalie, 22, has the illness, and parents Nancy and
Geoffrey formed the Cystinosis Research Foundation in 2003 to help
push for better treatments. Money raised by the foundation was
instrumental in the development of Procysbi,
Now the challenge is to get Procysbi, with its high price tag,
covered by insurers. "It does seem extreme to have [the price] that
high," Stack told
The Times. "But as a community, our bottom line is getting
better treatment for our children. And we know that this will
change our kids' lives."
Ground Turkey Contains Potentially Harmful Bacteria: Report
Potentially dangerous bacteria was found in most samples of
randomly tested ground turkey products sold at U.S. stores, and
some of the bacteria were antibiotic-resistant,
Consumer Reportshas found.
The group also discovered that turkey raised without antibiotics
had much less antibiotic-resistant bacteria than turkey raised with
"Our findings strongly suggest that there is a direct relationship between the routine use of antibiotics in animal production and increased antibiotic resistance in bacteria on ground turkey. It's very concerning that antibiotics fed to turkeys are creating resistance to antibiotics used in human medicine," Dr. Urvashi Rangan, director of the food safety and sustainability group at Consumer Reports, said in a news release. "Humans don't consume antibiotics every day to prevent disease and neither should healthy animals."
The group tested 257 kinds of raw ground turkey meat and patties
for five contaminants that can cause illness and be fatal in some
cases: enterococcus, E. coli, staphylococcus aureus, salmonella,
Ninety percent of the samples tested had at least one of the
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