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November 13, 2007: In the News

November 13, 2007

Bone Marrow Transplants Can Turn Deadly

A side effect to bone marrow transplants called graft-versus-host disease, or GVHD, strikes several thousand patients each year, and there has been little progress over the last decade to combat it. GVHD occurs when patients receive pieces of someone else’s immune system through donated bone marrow. The cells can become super-aggressive and attack the recipient’s body. An average of 1 in every 5 cases is life-threatening, severely affecting the stomach and intestines, causing unremitting vomiting and diarrhea.

ADHD Kids’ Brains Mature More Slowly

Researchers at the National Institute of Mental Health say key parts of the brain in children with ADHD develop more slowly compared to children without the condition. Development of regions of the brain that focus attention, suppress inappropriate actions, and influence short-term memory can lag as much as 3 years behind other kids, according to the study. Researchers used MRI scans over a 3-year period to measure cortex thickness throughout the brains of 223 kids with ADHD.

Hidden Dangers of Herbal Sex Pills Exposed

An Associated Press investigation suggests that herbal impotency pills are emerging as a major public health concern, with emergency rooms and poison control hotlines logging more incidents related to the unregulated supplements. The pills are often marketed as a safe alternative to sildenafil (Viagra) and other erectile dysfunction treatments. The herbal ingredients can pose a particular danger to men who take prescribed nitrates to lower blood pressure and regulate heart disease, potentially leading to heart attack, stroke, or death.

Milk Allergy Takes Longer to Outgrow: Study

A recent study appearing in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology reveals that milk allergies last longer than had been previously thought. Researchers found 19% outgrew their milk allergy by age 4; 42% by age 8, and 64% by the age of 12, with 79% outgrowing their cow’s milk allergy by age 16. The study found 1 in 5 did not outgrow their allergy by age 16, and kids with asthma, hay fever and those who received infant formula were less likely to outgrow the condition over time.

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