Jim Byard's Health Beat
Health Watch Stories 1 to 6 of 483  
St. John's Wort Can Cause Side Effects
A popular herbal therapy to help depression may not be as safe as once thought. A new study out of Australia finds that St. John's wort creates side effects as the drug Prozac. Those reactions include anxiety, panic attacks, dizziness, nausea and spikes in blood pressure.  Doctors caution that even if a remedy is "natural" or "herbal" that it doesn't mean it will be without negative reactions. 
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Game Changer For Kids With Scoliosis
Many young children with scoliosis face a childhood of countless doctor's appointments and treatments, including casts, braces and even surgery. In the most serious cases, an operation is needed to strengthen the spine every six months as the child grows. Now, kids have a high tech option that means less surgery. A magnetic device that was recently approved by FDA can be lengthen in a doctor's office without surgery. Doctor Ryan Goodwin with the Cleveland Clinic says any scoliosis patient eligible for a growing rod, as young as two-years-old, may also be a candidate for the magnetic rod.  
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Senators Introduce Legislation On Eating Disorder
A bipartisan group of senators is introducing a bill  to help combat eating disorders. The Anna Westin Act will use existing funds to create grant program to train school personnel, primary care physicians, and mental health and public health professionals in identifying, preventing, and intervening in eating disorders. It also clarifies the Paul Wellstone and Pete Domenici Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act, requiring health insurance companies to cover residential treatment for eating disorders. The bill is named for a 21-year-old Minnesota woman who committed suicide while struggling with anorexia.     
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New Infant Car Seat Aims To Stop Hot Car Deaths
An infant car seat that's designed to end hot car deaths is on its way to stores. The seat made by EvenFlo has a sensor on the harness that sets off a series of tones if the baby still buckled in when the car is turned off. The seat sells for about 150-dollars, which is the same price as comparable popular infant car seats. The seat is available now on Walmart.com and it will be in stores by mid-August. It will be sold exclusively at Walmart for the first year.
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Sunlight Maybe Good For The Elderly
Getting too much sun can be harmful, but for some older people, avoiding the sun could be unhealthy, too. Doctor Ronan Factora with the Cleveland Clinic says that a little sunlight can provide positive benefits for many elderly people. Doctor Factora says the Vitamin D that the sunlight provides may benefit our immune system as we get older. As one recent study points out, Vitamin D also has a role in calcium and phosphate metabolism, in skeletal health, and may reduce the risk of colorectal cancer, hip fractures and vascular events. The study found that because of these potential benefits, older adults may want to adopt a balanced approach to sun exposure.
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Olympian Warns Of Birth Control Pills
An Olympian who trains in Park City, Utah is warning women about a popular method of birth control that nearly killed her. Megan Henry says the NuvaRing caused blood clots in her lungs. The drug company Merck created NuvaRing and has settled a class action lawsuit with 38-hundred victims for 100-million-dollars. Henry is calling for an entire boycott of the product. Merck has changed warning labels on NuvaRing since the lawsuit, but continues to insist product is safe.
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