Tag Archives: news

Bacteria

Completely Resistant Superbug Strain Found in the US

It’s much more serious than Zika, Polio, or even Ebola. A drug resistant super-bug would send healthcare back to the days when the flu was lethal and infections led to amputation.

A genetic mutation that gives bacteria resistance to our strongest antibiotics has been found in the US for the first time ever.

Thankfully, the superbug isn’t ready just yet. The bacteria that was identified was vulnerable to a weaker subset of antibiotics, but that’s where the good news ends.

All it takes is for this gene to be transmitted to a bacteria that is already drug resistant, and healthcare might lose it’s upper hand over infections.

The drug resistance that has scientists worried comes from a gene called mcr-1. Unfortunately, this gene is easily transmitted to other bacteria. All it takes is for this gene to be transmitted to a bacteria that is already drug resistant and healthcare might lose it’s upper hand over infections.

The mcr-1 gene was found in Pennsylvania. Click here to learn more.

Dock

Electric Shock Drowning: 15 year old dies

Memorial Day is just around the corner and for many folks that means spending time at the lake. Unfortunately, there are lethal dangers that many of us are completely unaware of.

Electric Shock Drowning is when water around a dock is electrically charged and nearby swimmers are electrocuted by the AC charge. Many times swimmers are unaware of any possible danger before they enter the water, only to be electrocuted when they jump in or when they reach for the ladder to get out.

Typically, this problem arises when water finds it’s way into electrical components on the dock or somehow the wiring shorts into the water. Very little electricity is required to drown a swimmer. If you feel the water tingle, you should probably stay out until the dock is fixed.

10566279_GOne month ago Carmen Johnson died due to Electric Shock Drowning.  She was only 15.

After a few minutes, another friend jumped in. About that same time Jimmy lowered the metal ladder into the lake so the girls would have a way to climb out of the lake.

Jimmy said when the ladder hit the water, it sent an electrical current through the water. He heard Carmen’s friend scream for help. When he peered over the dock, he could see Carmen’s friend clinging to the ladder and Carmen underwater around her friend’s knees.

Jimmy said he jumped in the water to try to save the girls and that’s when he immediately felt the electric current. Before he blacked out, he yelled to his wife Casey, “Cut off the power to the boat dock.”

Carmen was a cheerleader with hopes to cheer at the University of Alabama. Her father is now raising awareness of Electric Shock Downing and promoting Dock Lifeguard, a product that warns of electrical charges in the water.

Click here to learn more about Electric Shock Drowning.

faucet

Flint in Alabama? 12 water systems have carcinogens in water

High concentrations of the cancer causing chemicals, PFOS and PFOA (Teflon related), have been detected in 13 water systems nationwide.

The EPA has finally decided to issue health warnings on these chemicals after decades of ignoring all the related health effects. We reported on these overlooked poisons last year and are thrilled the EPA has finally taken action. Unfortunately, 8 water systems in Alabama have been cited for having high concentrations of PFOS and PFOA.

According to EWG, a non-profit, non-partisan health organization,  9 Alabama counties are affected by PFOS and PFOA:

Chilton, Colbert, Cullman, DeKalb, Etowah, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Marshall, and Morgan County.

Nuts

FDA: Nuts, Avocados, and Salmon must NOT be labeled healthy

Although federal dietary guidelines emphasize the importance of eating healthy foods (including Nuts, Avocados, and Salmon) the FDA has been preventing such food products from being labeled as “healthy”. This powerful federal agency has been operating under 20 year old nutrition science that believes that limiting certain nutrients leads to greater health – the same nutrition science that created diet soda as a “healthy” alternative.

The company currently taking the brunt of this regulatory craziness is KIND snacks. They produce fruit and nut snack bars and they had the audacity to label themselves as healthy. The FDA sent them a cease and desist letter and they replied with this thorough petition.

The FDA has agreed to revisit their definition of “healthy”. Hopefully it will reconsider foods that people normally think of as healthy, like margarine, diet sodas, and whole wheat.

Spine Surgery

Infant’s Head is Reattached

They call it internal decapitation. Following a severe head-on collision, sixteen-month-old Jackson Taylor’s skull broke clean from his spine. The child was incredibly fortunate that his head was not completely separated from his body, and even more miraculous was that his spinal cord was still intact!

The accident occurred in Australia when the mother of the child, Rylea Taylor, her daughter, and infant Jackson were struck head-on by teenagers who were doing donuts and burning out. The mother was driving approximately 70 miles per hour.

Rylea Taylor was mostly uninjured but her daughter suffered abdominal injuries and her infant son was in life threatening condition. She says she immediately could tell that his neck was broken. The child was quickly airlifted to Brisbane.

When Jackson Taylor arrived at the hospital, famous spinal surgeon Geoff Askin preformed the 6 hour surgery to stabilize and reattach the child’s skull.

Doctors expect the child to recover within 8 weeks! You can follow the story here. Additionally, the mother has started a petition to increase penalties for reckless driving in Australia.

Image Credit: 7 News

Chemical Plant

The Poisons We Live In: How Dangerous Chemicals Still Evade Safety Testing

The story of Parkersburg, West Virginia is a cautionary tale of how large companies are still able to use marketing, lobbying, and lawyering to protect dangerous products.

Mariah Blake of the Huffington Post shares the story of  how Parkersburg became disastrously poisoned by DuPont’s chemical waste and how the main toxin, perfluorooctanoic acid (C8), has found it’s way into many US water systems. In fact, studies have shown the toxic chemical to be in the blood of over 90% of Americans.

Shelby county, Cullman County, and Clayton county are some of the many US counties that have detected C8 in the water supply.

Click here to see if your water is contaminated.

Although C8 is a known carcinogen,  liver toxin, developmental toxin, allergy stimulant and disrupter of normal thyroid function, it is still an unregulated substance.

The article in the Huffington Post explains how we arrived at this situation:

By the early 1970s, Congress was once again debating how to regulate the chemicals that now formed the fabric of American domestic life. Both houses drafted legislation that would empower the Environmental Protection Agency to study the health and environmental effects of chemicals and regulate their use. But the industry unleashed another lobbying blitz. Under the final version of the Toxic Substances Control Act of 1976, existing chemicals were again grandfathered in. Manufacturers did have to inform the EPA when they introduced new chemicals—but no testing was required. The resulting regulatory regime, which exists to this day, is remarkably laissez-faire. Only a handful of the 80,000-plus chemicals on the market have ever been tested for safety—meaning that we are all, in effect, guinea pigs in a vast, haphazard chemistry experiment.

Developments in chemistry have produced many valuable chemicals and medicines that have greatly benefited mankind. However, we should never be so foolish to ignore the dangers that can permanently damage our future and the future of our children.

The article is a long read, but definitely worth the time. Click here.

Tuna Recall

Warning: Salmonella in Sushi

According to a recent report by the CDC, 62 cases of salmonella have been reported across 11 states so far.

The culprit is frozen tuna processed by Osamu Corporation, which is sold through grocery stores and restaurants. A nation-wide recall has been issued for all affected products.

If buying frozen or thawed tuna at a store, ask if the product was sourced from Osamu Corporation or included in the recall. Affected tuna has a purchase order number from 8563 through 8599.

Also, grocery store pre-made sushi has also been affected by the recall. The affected sushi lot is sold through AFC Corporation and has the lot number 68568.

Mississippi and Virginia are among the states with reported cases so far.

image by InvernoDreaming.

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Girls soccer more dangerous than boys lacrosse

We normally think of soccer as a safer alternative to “full-contact” sports, like football, hockey or lacrosse. However, a recent study has shown that the risk of concussion is much higher than typically assumed.

In fact, the concussion risk for high school girls soccer is 4.5 concussions per 10,000 athlete exposures. This ranks  higher than the concussion risk for boys lacrosse, which is 4.0, and is almost that of football, which is 6.4.

The majority of concussions in soccer result from head-to-ball contact or head-to-head contact. Typically, these hits are the result of aggressive “Heading”, a move where soccer players use their head to hit the ball.

If more than one player goes for the same ball, the risk of injury is significantly increased, since players might have head-to-head contact.

10708755_825636734147508_6314490592686145869_oMuch of this risk is attributable to playing aggressively, however, players can educate themselves on how to head the ball safely, how to defend against head-to-head contact, and can use non-hindering protective gear.

If you would like to speak to a medical professional about concussion risks, look for doctors specializing in Sports Medicine.