Bugged by ringing in your ears? After doctors have ruled out possible serious causes, for example the presence of a tumor, there is really very little else that they can do for you. Whether the sound in your ear is ringing, whistling, clicking or hissing; loud or soft; intermittent or incessant; mildly annoying or downright infuriating, one of the following natural remedies could be the answer you seek. Continue reading
Medicare spent $4.5 billion last year on new, pricey medications that cure the liver disease hepatitis C — more than 15 times what it spent the year before on older treatments for the disease, previously undisclosed federal data shows.
The extraordinary outlays for these breakthrough drugs, which can cost $1,000 a day or more, will be borne largely by federal taxpayers, who pay for most of Medicare’s prescription drug program. But the expenditures will also mean higher deductibles and maximum out-of-pocket costs for many of the program’s 39 million seniors and disabled enrollees, who pay a smaller share of its cost, experts and federal officials said. Continue reading
A recipe found in a ninth-century Anglo Saxon book of medical remedies has proven effective in killing methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.
The key to killing methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus — also known as MRSA or golden staph — may not be new-fangled treatments after all, but a treatment for an infected eyelash follicle found in a 1,000-year-old book.
The MRSA “superbug” is notoriously difficult to treat. Over the years, it developed resistance to beta-lactam antibiotics, which include common treatments like penicillin and its derivatives, cephalosporins, monobactams and carbapenems. It’s also a particular problem in hospitals and nursing homes, where a high percentage of the population of which have open wounds and weakened immune systems. Continue reading
Archaeologists find oldest evidence of disease in 4,200 year old Egyptian skeleton
A team from a Spanish university has discovered what Egyptian authorities are calling the world’s oldest evidence of breast cancer in the 4,200-year-old skeleton of an adult woman. Continue reading
Cholesterol in foods does NOT cause heart disease
Potentially reversing almost 40 years of government policy, the top nutrition advisory board for the United States has dropped its warning against dietary cholesterol. The Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee concluded that no evidence supports a link between dietary cholesterol and heart disease.
Even five years ago, the committee was still promoting the warning first popularized by the American Heart Association in 1961. But the new position has been a long time coming.
“There’s been a shift of thinking,” said Walter Willett, chair of the nutrition department at the Harvard School of Public Health. He called the committee’s decision to drop the cholesterol warning a “reasonable move.” Continue reading
The world’s most widely-used weed killer can “probably” cause cancer (non-Hodgkin lymphoma), the World Health Organization said recently.
The WHO’s cancer arm, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), said glyphosate, the active ingredient in the Monsanto Co herbicide Roundup, was “classified as probably carcinogenic to humans”.
It also said there was “limited evidence” that glyphosate was carcinogenic in humans for non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
Monsanto, the world’s largest seed company, said scientific data do not support the conclusions and called on the WHO to hold an urgent meeting to explain the findings. Continue reading
Scientists believe the gases in our body can reveal a range of diseases such as colon cancer and irritable bowel syndrome.
But attempting to ‘scientifically analyse people’s farts’ – either by using a breathalyser or looking at feces – can prove tricky.
Now one engineer claims he has come up with two methods to do this that are far more effective; fecal fermentation and gas-sensing capsules.
Fecal fermentation involves incubating feces in conditions similar to those found in the large intestine.
To do this scientists place a spoonful of feces in a jar, and place a lid on it. Continue reading
New study reveals why taking statins may be harmful
People with high cholesterol are less likely to have diabetes, which may help explain why statins may trigger the condition.
Researchers found rates of type 2 diabetes among 25,000 patients with inherited hypercholesterolemia – a genetic disorder leading to high cholesterol levels – were significantly lower than among their unaffected relatives.
Some studies suggest people taking cholesterol-lowering agents face an increased risk of up to 46 per cent of developing diabetes, with higher risk linked to higher doses of the drugs.
However, experts say the absolute risk of diabetes is lower than the benefits of statins in cutting heart attacks and deaths. Continue reading
Advocates distorted statistics and downplayed side-effects say experts
The benefits of taking statins have been exaggerated, two leading experts claim.
They say the cholesterol-lowering medicines – hailed as miracle drugs when they hit the market 20 years ago – are not as safe or effective at preventing heart attacks as patients have been led to believe.
Although they can dramatically cut cholesterol levels, they have ‘failed to substantially improve cardiovascular outcomes’, says an analysis of data in clinical trials. Continue reading