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Health News Roundup: Microplastics turning up in human stool; U.S. records 19 new cases of measles as of last week

Devdiscourse News Desk
Updated: 03-09-2019 10:32 IST
Health News Roundup: Microplastics turning up in human stool; U.S. records 19 new cases of measles as of last week

Image Credit: Wikimedia commons

Following is a summary of current health news briefs.

Tuberculosis rates down in most U.S. children, but still high in some groups

Over the past decade, the number of children and teens in the U.S diagnosed with tuberculosis has decreased by nearly half, according to a new study. But that good news doesn't apply to everyone. The incidence of the disease among certain racial and ethnic groups was at least 14 times higher than among non-Hispanic white children and adolescents, researchers report in The Lancet Public Health.

Fewer cardiovascular events seen in diabetics after weight-loss surgery

For obese diabetics in a large U.S. study, weight-loss surgery was linked with a significant reduction in long-term rates of major cardiovascular problems. The study doesn't prove that surgery caused the better outcomes. But researchers found that obese individuals with type 2 diabetes who had weight-loss surgery were roughly 35% less likely to experience problems like heart attacks, strokes, and heart failure, and they were less likely to die during the study. They also lost more weight, controlled their diabetes better, and reduced the amount of medication they took.

China expands drug bulk-buy program, puts pressure on pharma firms

China has expanded a pilot drug bulk-buying program to almost the entire country in an attempt to negotiate lower prices from drug manufacturers, heaping fresh pressure on multinational pharmaceutical companies and their domestic rivals. The program rolled out last year saw 11 Chinese cities, including Beijing and Shanghai, band together behind a tender process to bulk-buy 25 types of drugs. This caused the price of some medicines to plunge over 90%, state news agency Xinhua said.

After heart attack stenting, coming back to open other narrowed arteries pays off - study

A new study offers some advice for doctors poking around the heart to reopen a clogged artery that has caused one type of heart attack: Come back again to finish the job. The study found that when doctors also open other arteries that are dangerously narrow -- either while the patient is still hospitalized or after a month or so -- those patients are half as likely to die from heart problems, have a heart attack or need repeat surgery due to chest pain than patients given conventional medical therapy.

Chinese city sells discounted pork as meat prices soar: media

A city in southern China is selling a limited quantity of pork at discounted prices to help consumers cope with soaring prices, as the world's top pork-eating nation deals with a meat shortage caused by the death of pigs due to African swine fever. From Sept. 1, people in Nanning, the capital of the southwestern Guangxi region, can buy up to 1 kg of pork a day at a discount of more than 10% to the average market price over the previous 10 days, said the state-backed Nanning Evening News on Sunday.

Microplastics turning up in human stool

Tiny bits of plastic may be getting into our bodies via the air we breathe and the food we eat, a new study suggests. Researchers who examined stool samples from eight people from diverse geographic locations found that all contained bits of plastic, according to a report in Annals of Internal Medicine. Czech doctors deliver baby girl 117 days after mother's brain-death

When a helicopter rushed an unconscious Czech woman who had suffered a severe stroke to hospital in April, her chances of survival were slim - and those of the fetus she had carried in her womb for 15 weeks little better. And yet, on Aug. 15, against all odds, a healthy baby girl was born by cesarean section - weighing 2.13 kg (4.7 lb) and measuring 42 cm (16.5 inches) - to her brain-dead mother, setting a new record in the process, Brno's University Hospital said on Monday.

U.S. records 19 new cases of measles as of last week

The United States recorded 19 new measles cases last week, taking the total cases for the year to 1,234 across 31 states in the worst outbreak since 1992, federal health officials said on Monday. More than 75% of the cases this year are linked to outbreaks in New York, with the majority of cases among people who were not vaccinated against measles, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said.

China says has only 'limited' cooperation with U.S. on fentanyl

China and the United States have only "limited" cooperation in stopping fentanyl smuggling, a Chinese narcotics official was quoted as saying on Tuesday, after complaints China isn't doing enough to help fight an opioid crisis in the United States. U.S. officials say China is the main source of illicit fentanyl and fentanyl-related substances that are trafficked into the United States, much of it through international mail. China denies that most of the illicit fentanyl entering the United States originates in China.

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(With inputs from agencies.)