Jun 14, 2011, 5:19 p.m.
Prenatal pesticide exposure tied to birth size
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Exposure to even moderate amounts of certain pesticides during pregnancy may affect infants' birth size, a new study suggests. Researchers found that among nearly 500 newborns whose umbilical cord blood was tested for pesticide residues, those with higher levels tended to be smaller at birth.
Sleep position may affect stillbirth risk
LONDON (Reuters) - Women who do not sleep on their left side on their last night of pregnancy have double the risk of late stillbirth compared with women who do sleep on their left side, according to a study from New Zealand. The researchers who conducted the study said women should not worry because the increased risk is still very small -- the chance of the baby being stillborn rises to 3.93 per 1,000 for those who don't sleep on their left from 1.96 per 1,000 for those who do.
COPD mist inhaler may increase risk of death: study
CHICAGO (Reuters) - A mist inhaler used to improve breathing in people with lung diseases including chronic bronchitis and emphysema may increase their risk of dying by 52 percent, U.S. and British researchers said on Tuesday. The increased risk occurred in patients who used the Spiriva Respimat inhaler, a newer device made by privately held Boehringer Ingelheim. It delivers a soluble form of Spiriva, known generically as tiotropium.
Malpractice claims common outside of the hospital
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Medical errors don't just happen at the hospital, according to a new study that highlights safety problems in the doctor's office as well. Researchers found that about half of U.S. malpractice payments -- a proxy for medical errors -- from 2009 involved patients seen outside of the hospital.
Sunscreen label changes aim to reduce cancer risk
CHICAGO (Reuters) - New labeling rules for sunscreens should make it easier for U.S. consumers to choose products that will protect them from sunburn, skin cancer and premature aging. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration ruled on Tuesday that sunscreens making those claims will need to protect against both ultraviolet A and B rays and have a sun protection factor (SPF) of 15 or higher.
Australia health minister accuses tobacco firms of smear
CANBERRA (Reuters) - Australia's health minister accused big tobacco companies on Wednesday of using smear tactics against her in retaliation for the minority government's plans to introduce the world's toughest anti-smoking laws. Nicola Roxon, who is forcing global tobacco firms to adopt plain, brand-less packaging for cigarettes, accused the tobacco lobby of trying to discredit her after letters were released showing she had asked cigarette companies to help fund her 2007 re-election.
TV time tied to diabetes, death
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - People who log more hours in front of the television are at greater risk of dying, or developing diabetes and heart disease, a new study suggests. "The message is simple," study author Dr. Frank Hu at the Harvard School of Public Health told Reuters Health. "Cutting back on TV watching is an important way to reduce sedentary behaviors and decrease risk of diabetes and heart disease."
J&J wins U.S. approval for hip replacement system
NEW YORK (Reuters) - A ceramic-on-metal artificial hip system made by Johnson & Johnson for patients with osteoarthritis has won U.S. approval, the Food and Drug Administration said on Tuesday. The approval provided some welcome news for J&J's DePuy orthopedics division. The company is facing a rash of personal injury lawsuits from patients who received older hip replacement products that were recalled last year due to defects.
Seizure drugs tied to pregnancy risks
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - New research on the links between seizure medication and pregnancy complications highlights the hard choices that pregnant women with epilepsy must make. Scientists from the University of Bergen in Norway found that women with epilepsy are more likely to have pregnancy complications, and that the added risks were largely "associated with the use of anti-epileptic drugs in pregnancy."
FDA extends recall on Boston Scientific's catheters
BANGALORE (Reuters) - Health regulators have expanded the recall of Boston Scientific Corp's coronary imaging catheters by including a new model. The Food and Drug Administration said on its website the recall involves 110,020 iCross and Atlantis SR Pro2 devices distributed within and outside the United States.