Pregnant mothers’ exposure to the flu was associated with a nearly fourfold increased risk that their child would develop bipolar disorder in adulthood, in a study funded by the National Institutes of Health. The findings add to mounting evidence of possible shared underlying causes and illness processes with schizophrenia, which some studies have also linked to prenatal exposure to influenza.
According to new surveillance statistics released on Friday from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), forty-seven states in the U.S. are now reporting widespread influenza activity . The virus, which first appeared in the Southeast, has reached epidemic levels.
Walmart and Sam’s Club (a division of Wal-Mart Stores) recently announced the launch of expanded immunization services across the United States, signaling the company’s expansion into healthcare services [1, 2]. In partnership with Mollen Immunization Clinics, ten of the CDC-recommended immunizations will be offered in more than 2,700 Walmart stores and 554 Sam’s Club pharmacy locations.
A heart attack, or myocardial infarction (MI), occurs when a portion of the heart muscle becomes oxygen-starved due to clogged blood vessels. This can damage or kill the affected portion of muscle. Depending upon the amount of muscle involved, heart attacks range from mild to life-threatening. The best predictor of whether a heart attack sufferer will survive an acute MI is their ability to identify that a heart attack is taking place and get medical help.
Xylitol, or birch sugar, is a sugar naturally found in plums, strawberries, raspberries, and rowan berries. It is often used to sweeten toothpaste and chewing gum since it is as sweet as sucrose but does not cause tooth decay; this is because it cannot be fermented by bacteria that live in our mouths, and instead inhibits their growth. As the key step causing acute ear infections is the colonization of the middle ear by bacteria that move there from the mouth, researchers have hypothesized that xylitol might help prevent acute ear infections as well as tooth decay.
Researchers at the University of Toronto recently performed a meta-analysis of three Finnish studies and found that children who chewed gum — or took other products laden with xylitol, including lozenges or syrup — had about a 25% lower risk of developing an ear infection compared to controls. The study is published in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews .