Health Highlights: March 7, 201403/07/14
Here are some of the latest health and medical news
developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:
New Testosterone Drug OK'd by FDA Amid Controversy
A controversial new drug for men with low testosterone has been
approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Aveed, a long-acting testosterone injection that's taken once
very 10 weeks, is expected to be available this month, according to
Irish drugmaker Endo Pharmaceuticals. Similar products need to be
taken weekly or biweekly,
CBS News/Associated Pressreported.
The FDA should reverse its approval of Aveed, Public Citizen's
Health Research Group founder Dr. Sidney Wolfe said in a letter to
the agency. He pointed out that an FDA panel of outside experts
last April voted 9-9 on whether the drug was safe for treating low
That vote came before a federal study suggested that
testosterone therapy could double the risk of heart attack in men
65 and older, said Wolfe, who added that the vote result might have
been against the drug if that information was known at the
In response to the study, the FDA said in January that it was
reviewing the safety of testosterone drugs. Public Citizen says the
FDA should make all testosterone drugs carry a black box warning
about cardiovascular risks,
"The FDA's current view is that the benefits of testosterone therapy, including Aveed, outweigh the known risks when used as directed in patients for whom the drug is indicated," said FDA spokeswoman Andrea Fischer.
High Vitamin D Levels Benefit Breast Cancer Patients: Study
High levels of vitamin D improve survival in breast cancer
patients, according to a new review.
Researchers analyzed five studies that included thousands of
breast cancer patients who were followed for an average of nine
years and found that those with high levels of vitamin D in their
blood were twice as likely to survive as those with low levels,
United Press Internationalreported.
The findings were published in the journal
Further studies are needed, but the researchers said their
results suggest that adding vitamin D supplements to breast cancer
patients' standard care could be beneficial,
Surgeon Who Saved Many Pitchers' Careers Dies at Age 88
The American doctor who saved the careers of many baseball
pitchers and other athletes died Thursday in Santa Monica, Calif.
at age 88.
Dr. Frank Jobe developed the groundbreaking Tommy John surgery,
which was named for the first pitcher who underwent the procedure
The surgery involves transplanting an unneeded tendon from the
wrist into the elbow, where it functions as a new ligament. The
procedure has been used since in thousands of athletes, most of
The New York Timesreported.
Jobe also developed a new shoulder surgery that reduces trauma
to tissue during the procedure. Pitcher Orel Hershiser was the
first to undergo the surgery in 1990.
"There are a lot of pitchers in baseball who should celebrate his life and what he did for the game of baseball," Tommy John said in a statement released after Jobe's death, The Timesreported.
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