Recall of blood pressure drug losartan expanded

If you take blood pressure medicine, you’ll want to double-check your bottle. Torrent Pharmaceuticals Ltd. has expanded its recall of losartan potassium and losartan potassium/hydrochlorothiazide tablets. Tests found trace amounts of a potentially cancer-causing impurity called N-methylnitrosobutyric acid in some of these drugs. The company is recalling 36 additional lots, it said Thursday. A full list of recalled drugs is available on the US Food and Drug Administration website. The company hasn’t had any reports of users getting sick, but the impurity level in these pills is above what the FDA considers an acceptable daily…

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This flu season is the longest in a decade, CDC says

It’s official: This year’s flu season is a record breaker. There have been 21 weeks of elevated flu activity reported in the United States during the current 2018-19 flu season, based on data from the weekly flu report released Friday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That’s one week longer than the previous 10-year high, which occurred in the 2014-2015 season and lasted 20 weeks, according to CDC spokeswoman Kristen Nordlund. “This season has been record-breaking in terms of duration,” she said. The latest weekly report includes flu activity through…

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Mom suing Colorado doctor over daughter’s infection

AURORA, Colo. – A 13-year-old girl and her mother claim the girl’s urologist stopped seeing the girl when her care became too complicated. Now, Abaigeal Holbrook and her mother Carrie are suing Children’s Hospital Colorado and Dr. Duncan Wilcox. In 2014, Dr. Wilcox implanted a device in Abaigeal’s lower back to help her with bladder control issues caused by a disease called transverse myelitis. The medical device is a miracle when it works, but it became a nightmare when it caused multiple infections over a 2-year period. “It was really painful, to…

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It’s now legal for your meat to have trace amounts of fecal matter

This product “may contain feces.” That’s the label that one consumer rights advocacy group wants for the government to require meat distributors put on the food they send out to grocery stores. The recommendation is tongue-in-cheek, Deborah Press, an attorney for the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, tells CNN. The group represents 12,000 physicians whose mission includes promoting plant-based diets and ethical scientific research. But it gets at real concerns the PCRM has about the US Department of Agriculture’s food safety inspection system. The US Department of Agriculture has a…

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Israeli flight attendant in coma after getting measles

KFAR SABA, Israel – An Israeli flight attendant has slipped into a coma after contracting measles, according to health officials. The 43-year-old woman has encephalitis, or inflammation of the brain, a well-known and potentially deadly complication of the virus. She was otherwise healthy before getting measles. “She’s been in a deep coma for 10 days, and we’re now just hoping for the best,” said Dr. Itamar Grotto, associate director general of Israel’s Ministry of Health. The flight attendant, who works for El Al, the Israeli national airline, might have contracted the virus…

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Neck surgery helps Henrico firefighter get back to work: ‘Best decision I made’

RICHMOND, Va. — John Larsen is thankful to be healthy and back on the job again, answering the call for help as a Henrico firefighter. Larsen, 35, recently returned to work after having surgery for a damaged disc in his neck. “The herniated disc created a pinched nerve in my neck which presented pain significantly in my shoulder and left arm, so I was out of work that entire time,” Larsen said. Cervical herniated discs are common, especially in younger patients in physically demanding jobs. Dr. Matthew Mayr, M.D., a…

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Falling for phone scams could be an early sign of dementia, study says

The woman lives alone, but she’s rarely lonely. Friends stop by most mornings, and a niece looks in weekly. Still, most of her afternoons and evenings are spent sitting in her chair, looking at the clouds and sky through a picture window. The caller sounded nice. “Good afternoon,” he said in a cheery voice, asking whether he could use her first name. She couldn’t remember entering the sweepstakes, but he assured her that she had and that it didn’t matter: What matters, he said, is that she’d won. “And what…

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New Jersey to allow terminally ill patients to end their lives

TRENTON, New Jersey — Terminally ill adults in New Jersey will now be able to ask for medical help to end their lives. Gov. Phil Murphy has signed the Medical Aid in Dying for the Terminally Ill Act. And the law goes into effect August 1. It will allow adults with a prognosis of six months or less to live to get a prescription for life-ending medication. This make New Jersey the ninth jurisdiction to allow physician-assisted suicide. The others are: California, Colorado, Oregon, Vermont, Washington, Hawaii, Montana and the…

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CDC suspects ground beef is the source of recent E. coli outbreak in 6 states, including Virginia

Ground beef is the food responsible for a mystery E. coli outbreak involving 109 cases of illness in six states, including Virginia, according to preliminary evidence, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Friday. “Ill people in this outbreak report eating ground beef at home and in restaurants,” the CDC said in its outbreak update. No single supplier, distributor or brand has been identified as the source of the outbreak. Therefore, no recall has been issued, and the CDC is not recommending that consumers avoid ground beef at…

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