Health Highlights: July 10, 201307/10/13
Here are some of the latest health and medical news
developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:
New Diaper Detects Infant Health Problems
A diaper that can detect possible urinary tract infections,
kidney problems and dehydration in babies, along with a smartphone
app that can transmit the diaper information to a doctor, has been
developed by a New York Company called Pixie Scientific.
The front of the diaper has several colored squares. Each square
represents a different interaction with a protein, water content or
bacteria and changes color if there is something unusual,
The New York Timesreported.
The smartphone app takes a picture and can make precise readings
of the chemical data based on color changes in the diaper squares.
The information is relayed to a central location, where doctors can
determine if the baby requires further testing.
The diaper is expected to be tested at Benioff Children's
Hospital of the University of California, San Francisco this
September, and Columbia University's children's hospital is
considering a similar study. If the tests are successful, the
diaper may then be submitted to the Food and Drug Administration
for final approval,
The diaper is expected to cost about 30 percent more than
conventional diapers, according to Pixie Scientific founder
Surprising Pattern of Spine Injuries Among Jet Crash
A pattern of spine injuries among some survivors of the Asiana
jet crash in San Francisco shows how violently passengers were
shaken despite wearing seat belts, a doctor says.
Several patients have needed surgery to stabilize their spines
so they can move and two patients can't move their legs, although
it's not known if the damage is permanent, Dr. Geoffrey Manley,
chief of neurosurgery at San Francisco General Hospital, told the
He said the worst injuries include crushed vertebrae that
compress the spinal cord, and ligaments that are so stretched and
torn that they're unable to hold neck and back joints in place.
Even among passengers who suffered mild spine trauma, the
pattern of injuries shows how their upper bodies were hurled
forward than backward over their lap belts, Manley told the
However, that doesn't mean that adding shoulder belts to airline
seats is a good idea.
"If you put in the shoulder belt, it might just move the injuries up further. Your head weighs a tremendous amount," Manley said. He hopes to study the issue by comparing survivors' injuries to where they sat, the APreported.
Only 2 of the 307 passengers and crew of the jet died in
Saturday's crash. More than 180 people went to hospitals with
injuries, but only a small number were critically injured.
Abortion Bill Moving Through Texas Legislature
A restrictive abortion bill is once again moving through the
Texas legislature during a special session called by Republican
Gov. Rick Perry.
The controversial bill was stalled last month by Democratic Sen.
Wendy Davis' 11-hour filibuster. However, a new version was drafted
and there was a hearing on the bill in the Republican-controlled
House on Monday and a debate on the floor on Tuesday,
The New York Timesreported.
Like its predecessor, the new version would ban abortions after
20 weeks of pregnancy and hold abortion clinics to the same
standards as hospital-style surgical centers.
While proponents of the bill say the requirements for abortion
clinics are meant to improve safety, opponents charge that the
rules are meant to burden the clinics with costs that will force
many to close,
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