Health Newsbrief
November 7, 2001
Vol. 2, No. 37
ISSN 1530-3616
______________________________________________________


Bruce Maxwell, Editor - bmax@silverhammerpub.com
Silver Hammer Publishing - http://silverhammerpub.com

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Editor's Note
______________________________________________________

My apologies for not publishing for the last several weeks. I was
on an extended trip regarding a family medical matter. Regular
weekly publication resumes with this issue.


The News
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A MUSCULAR LOBBY
TRIES TO SHAPE NATION'S BIOTERROR PLAN
Lobbyists for the pharmaceutical industry are swarming all over
the White House and Capitol Hill in Washington, meeting with top
government officials in closed sessions to discuss fighting the
bioterrorism threat. The lobbyists say their only motive is to
help the country during its time of need, yet each of their
offers of help has serious strings attached that ultimately
benefit the industry.
Source: New York Times - Nov. 4, 2001
http://www.nytimes.com/2001/11/04/business/04PHAR.html


PRESCRIBING CIPRO IS 'UNCONTROLLED EXPERIMENT'
It seems like everyone who comes within 10 miles of an anthrax
spore these days is being advised to take the antibiotic Cipro.
But as anyone who has taken Cipro can tell you, the drug has some
pretty nasty side effects. In addition, taking it for the
extended periods recommended by government officials has never
been proven to be safe.
Source: Washington Post - Nov. 3, 2001
http://washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A32486-2001Nov2.html


FURIOUS LOBBYING IS SET OFF
BY BILL ON MENTAL HEALTH
Efforts to force group health plans to offer the same insurance
coverage for mental illnesses as they provide for other types of
medical conditions now face their best chance in Congress in this
decade, according to advocates. The efforts face intense
opposition from employers, insurance companies, and some health
maintenance organizations. Despite strong evidence to the
contrary, the opponents claim that so-called mental health parity
would drive up insurance costs.
Source: New York Times - Nov. 6, 2001
http://www.nytimes.com/2001/11/06/politics/06MENT.html


NUTRITIONAL ANALYSIS OF BARS
REVEALS DISCREPANCIES
Those nutrition bars sold in grocery checkout lanes, fitness
clubs, and just about everywhere else sure look healthy. But a
new study has found that labels on many of the bars seriously
misrepresent the ingredients. Some bars had 100 more calories
than their labels claimed.
Source: Los Angeles Times - Nov. 5, 2001
http://www.latimes.com/features/health/
la-000088384nov05.story?coll=la%2Dheadlines%2Dhealth



WEEKLY CONTRACEPTIVE PATCH
FOUND SAFE, EFFECTIVE
A study published in the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology has
found that a new contraceptive patch is safe and effective. The
patch, called Ortho EVRA/EVRA, must be changed weekly.
Source: Reuters Health - Nov. 2, 2001
http://dailynews.yahoo.com/h/nm/20011102/hl/contraceptive_1.html


BELGIUM GIVES TERMINALLY ILL PEOPLE
THE RIGHT TO DIE
Belgium's legislature is expected before the end of the year to
approve legislation that would decriminalize euthanasia. A person
who wishes to die will have to meet strict criteria. Earlier this
year, the Netherlands became the first nation to decriminalize
euthanasia.
Source: British Medical Journal - Nov. 3, 2001
http://bmj.com/cgi/content/full/323/7320/1024/a


ATTENTION-DEFICIT/HYPERACTIVITY DISORDER:
MANAGEMENT
Since no laboratory test exists for
attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, diagnosing and treating
children and adults who have the disorder can be challenging.
This article explains the steps that physicians should take with
patients whom they suspect may have ADHD. A useful table with the
article lists books about ADHD written for children and parents.
Source: American Family Physician - Oct. 15, 2001
http://www.aafp.org/afp/20011015/1355.html


EVEN HIGH-NORMAL BLOOD PRESSURE IS TOO HIGH
People whose blood pressure is at the high end of what's
considered normal are at increased risk for heart disease,
according to a study published in the New England Journal of
Medicine. The study raises the possibility that the definition of
the normal range may need to be changed, and that doctors will
need to treat more people.
Source: Science News - Nov. 3, 2001
http://www.sciencenews.org/20011103/fob4.asp


BRAIN SCANS ACCURATELY PREDICT
ALZHEIMER'S: STUDY
A PET brain scan that examines metabolism is quite accurate in
identifying Alzheimer's disease before symptoms appear,
researchers from the University of California report in the
Journal of the American Medical Association. In the study of 284
patients, the scans identified Alzheimer's in many of the people
who developed outward symptoms within three years. However, the
scans also returned false positive results in a large number of
cases.
Source: Reuters Health - Nov. 6, 2001
http://dailynews.yahoo.com/h/nm/20011106/hl/alzheimers_1.html


Need a Writer or Researcher?
______________________________________________________

The editor of this newsletter is a full-time freelance writer
and researcher who's available for a variety of assignments -
articles, brochures, books, Web consultations, or a nice e-mail
newsletter like this one - about health or other topics. He has
20 years of professional writing experience, and has written
several books about searching the Internet. If you'd like to
learn more, visit http://bmaxwell.home.mindspring.com, send an
e-mail to bmaxwell@mindspring.com, or call 703-532-6327.
______________________________________________________

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