Health Newsbrief
July 19, 2000
Vol. 1, No. 13
ISSN 1530-3616
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Bruce Maxwell, Editor <bmax@silverhammerpub.com>
Silver Hammer Publishing <http://silverhammerpub.com>

Instructions for subscribing and unsubscribing are provided at
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The News
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ONCE AGAIN, PROZAC TAKES CENTER STAGE IN FUROR
A new book that attacks Prozac and other antidepressants is
getting lots of attention. That's a little hard to understand
since no reputable scientists support the book's alarmist
theories. In fact, some leading researchers whose work is quoted
in the book strongly disagree with its conclusions.
Source: New York Times - July 18, 2000
http://www.nytimes.com/library/national/science/health/
071800hth-behavior-prozac.html



SEPARATING RESEARCH FROM NEWS
Last week's announcement about development of a vaccine for
Alzheimer's disease generated huge amounts of media coverage,
most of which implied that a cure was right around the corner.
What the stories failed to mention is that drugs at the same
early stage of development as the vaccine rarely make it to
market.
Source: New York Times - July 18, 2000
http://www.nytimes.com/library/national/science/health/
071800hth-reflections-alzhemiers.html



HERBAL SUPPLEMENTED FOOD CRITICIZED
Dozens of foods contain illegal herbal supplements and should be
removed from the market, according to a petition filed with the
U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The petition was written by
the Connecticut attorney general and the Center for Science in
the Public Interest, a group in Washington, D.C. The petition
claims that the foods make phony health claims and may be
dangerous.
Source: Associated Press - July 18, 2000
http://dailynews.yahoo.com/h/ap/20000718/hl/
deceptive_foods_1.html

Foods listed in CSPI complaint:
http://www.cspinet.org/reports/funcfoodcomplaint.htm


CELL PHONE MAKERS TO DISCLOSE RADIATION LEVELS
TO CONSUMERS
Reacting to concerns that using cellular phones may cause brain
cancer, cell phone manufacturers are going to start disclosing
the amount of radiation that hits your body while using
individual phones. But don't look for the numbers on phone boxes
in stores, which would allow you to compare similar products.
That would be something like useful. Instead, the numbers will
either be on inserts in the boxes or posted on the Web site of
the Federal Communications Commission.
Source: San Jose Mercury News - July 17, 2000
http://mercurycenter.com/svtech/news/front/docs/cell071800.htm


PHYSICIANS ENTICED INTO EARLY RETIREMENT
Preliminary surveys show that an ever growing number of
physicians are choosing to retire early, leading to concerns
about future doctor shortages. Most who retire early say they're
doing so because of frustration with managed care.
Source: American Medical News - July 24, 2000
http://www.ama-assn.org/sci-pubs/amnews/pick_00/prl20724.htm


PSYCHIATRIC HELP MAY SHRINK SOME WAISTLINES
Twenty-five percent of patients who seek a primary care
physician's help with weight problems suffer from an active
psychiatric illness, according to a presentation at the annual
meeting of the American Psychiatric Association. Most suffer from
depression. The patients often believe they're depressed because
of their weight, but the reality is that they're overeating in
response to depression or anxiety.
Source: JAMA - July 19, 2000
http://jama.ama-assn.org/issues/v284n3/full/jmn0719-1.html


SIGN OF THE TIMES: CALIFORNIA OPENS DEPARTMENT
TO REGULATE HMOs
California has become the first state in the country to create a
government agency specifically to regulate managed care. Nearly
half of California's residents are covered by HMOs, but many
state HMOs have recently been suffering serious financial
problems.
Source: American Medical News - July 24, 2000
http://www.ama-assn.org/sci-pubs/amnews/pick_00/bisa0724.htm


CHARACTERISTICS AND EXPERIENCES OF PARENTS AND
ADULTS WHO WANT ANTIBIOTICS FOR COLD SYMPTOMS
A Minnesota study found that half of all adults with colds and 30
percent of parents whose children have colds ask physicians for
antibiotics - even though antibiotics have repeatedly been proven
ineffective in treating colds. And doctors continue to prescribe
antibiotics to keep their patients happy, contributing to the
problem of antibiotic overuse.
Source: Archives of Family Medicine - July 2000
http://archfami.ama-assn.org/issues/v9n7/full/foc9062.html


CLINTON ANNOUNCES ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
COMMISSION MEMBERS
President Bill Clinton has appointed 10 members to the new White
House Commission on Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Policy. The commission is expected to prepare a report that will
include recommendations to Congress and the president about
legislation regarding alternative and complementary therapies.
Source: Reuters - July 14, 2000
http://dailynews.yahoo.com/h/nm/20000714/hl/alternative_1.html


PROFITS, POLITICS, AND A DRUG PATENT
Two Republican U.S. senators are at the forefront of efforts to
pass legislation that would extend the patent on the allergy drug
Claritin. Such an extension could reap billions for
Schering-Plough, the drug's manufacturer, and keep the drug's
price high for consumers because generic versions would remain
forbidden. Is it a coincidence that the two lawmakers have each
received $50,000 campaign contributions from the drug company?
Source: Christian Science Monitor - July 19, 2000
http://www.csmonitor.com/durable/2000/07/19/p1s2.htm


CALIFORNIA CLUB GETS JUDGE'S OK TO DISPENSE
MEDICAL MARIJUANA
A federal judge in San Francisco has issued an order permitting
the Oakland Cannabis Buyers' Cooperative to sell marijuana to
people who suffer from AIDS, cancer, and other serious illnesses.
The judge, who previously ordered California medical marijuana
clubs to close, said he changed his mind because attorneys for
the federal government had "still not offered any evidence to
rebut the evidence that cannabis is medically necessary for a
group of seriously ill individuals."
Source: Reuters - July 18, 2000
http://dailynews.yahoo.com/h/nm/20000718/hl/marijuana_1.html


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Silver Hammer Publishing
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