Health News Roundup: Teen depression risk lower in close-knit families; vaping 'epidemic' and more
Following is a summary of current health news briefs.
Democrat lawmaker introduces bill to cap nicotine content in vapes
A U.S. lawmaker on Monday introduced a bill that seeks to regulate e-cigarette makers by capping the amount of nicotine in the vapes they manufacture to make them less addictive. The bill, introduced by Illinois Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi, is the latest effort by lawmakers to clamp down on e-cigarette use, given a spike in underage vaping.
Nobel Medicine Prize won by doctors for work on cells' response to oxygen
Two Americans and a Briton won the 2019 Nobel Medicine Prize on Monday for discovering a molecular switch that regulates how cells adapt to fluctuating oxygen levels, opening up new approaches to treating heart failure, anaemia and cancer. William Kaelin at the U.S. Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Harvard Medical School said he was overwhelmed to get a pre-dawn call to say he and two other doctors, Gregg Semenza of Johns Hopkins University and Peter Ratcliffe of Oxford University, had won the 9-million Swedish-crown ($913,000) prize.
U.S. recorded seven new cases of measles last week
The United States recorded 7 new measles cases last week taking the total cases for the year to 1,250 in the worst outbreak since 1992, federal health officials said on Monday. As of Oct. 3, the highly contagious and sometimes deadly disease has been reported in 31 states, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (https://bit.ly/2iMFK71)
Paralyzed man hails 'feat' of walking again with robot exoskeleton
The French tetraplegic man who has been able to walk again using a pioneering four-limb robotic system, or exoskeleton, said walking was a major feat for him after being immobile for years. The French scientists behind the system, which was publicly unveiled last week, use a system of sensors implanted near the brain which send signals to the robotic system, moving the patient's legs and arms.
Two school districts sue Juul over vaping 'epidemic'
Two public school districts on Monday sued Juul Labs Inc, accusing the company of endangering their students and draining their resources by marketing its addictive e-cigarettes to teenagers. The St. Charles, Missouri, and Olathe, Kansas, public school systems appeared to be the first school districts to join the rising wave of litigation against Juul.
More U.S. heart disease patients may be choosing to die at home
Fewer U.S. patients with cardiovascular disease are dying in hospitals and more of them are dying at home, a new analysis suggests. Between 2003 and 2017, among the more than 12 million Americans who died of cardiovascular disease, the proportion dying at home rose from 23% to 31%, researchers report in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.
Rising heart infections tied to U.S. opioid epidemic
As the opioid epidemic continues in the U.S., more cases of an infection that damages the heart are being seen, researchers say. Between 2002 and 2016, rates of infective endocarditis doubled, with much of the increase occurring in young, poor, white men who also tended to have higher rates of alcohol abuse, hepatitis C and HIV, the study authors report in the Journal of the American Heart Association.
Teen depression risk lower in close-knit families
Teens with positive family relationships may be less likely to develop depression during adolescence or early adulthood, a new study suggests. Researchers followed 18,185 volunteers starting when they were age 15 on average and continuing until ages 32 to 43. In a series of surveys, researchers asked them about family dynamics and depression symptoms.
Kroger, Walgreens to stop sales of e-cigarettes amid U.S. vaping crackdown
Kroger Co and Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc said on Monday they would stop selling e-cigarettes at their stores, amid heightened regulatory scrutiny of the product and reports of lung disease and some deaths linked to vaping. Their move comes weeks after Walmart Inc said it was pulling the plug on e-cigarette sales, citing growing federal, state and local regulatory complexity and uncertainty.
(With inputs from agencies.)