- Some Artificial Turf Fields Should Be Tested For Lead: CDC
- VA Denying Most Claims From Secret Tests
- World Population To Reach 7 Billion in 2012
- FDA Sued Over Alleged Painkiller Risks
- PETCO Warehouse Cited for Unsanitary Conditions
- Drug Linked to Suicide Being Tested on Vets With PTSD
- Scientists Renew Old Muscles
- Baby Bottle Makers Sued Over Bisphenol A
Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by editors of HealthDay:
Some Artificial Turf Fields Should Be Tested For Lead: CDC
Some artificial turf athletic fields should be tested for the lead, says a health advisory posted on the Web site of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The agency said any field containing worn or faded turf blades that are made of nylon or nylon-blend fibers should be tested, as well as nylon fields with visible dust, the Associated Press reported.
Testing doesn't need to be done on artificial fields made from polyethylene or nylon fields that aren't visibly worn, the CDC said.
The advisory was issued two months after health officials in New Jersey found high lead levels in artificial turf fibers from three athletic fields. They also determined that lead in the turf can be absorbed by people.
While the lead levels weren't high enough to cause poisoning in people who play on the fields, these levels could cause additional health damage to children already exposed to lead, said New Jersey epidemiologist Dr. Eddy Bresnitz, the AP reported.
VA Denying Most Claims From Secret Tests
Only a small percentage of health claims filed by American veterans stemming from once-secret chemical and germ warfare tests conducted in the 1960s and 1970s have been approved by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, the Associated Press reported.
During the tests, conducted from 1962 to 1973, more than 6,000 of members of the military were exposed to real and simulated chemical and biological agents. In many cases, the tests were conducted without the participants' knowledge.
Of the 6,440 service members involved in the experiments, 4,438 have been notified of their participation, while the remainder couldn't be located or have died, the AP reported.
As of May 2008, 39 of the claims received by the VA were granted, 546 were denied, and 56 were pending. Many of the veterans have cancer, respiratory conditions or other health problems.
Earth's Population To Reach 7 Billion in 2012
Earth's population will reach seven billion in 2012, putting increased pressure on dwindling natural resources, according to projections released by the U.S. Census Bureau.
There is no agreement on how many people the planet can sustain, said William Frey, a demographer at the Washington, D.C.-based Brookings Institution. It depends on how will the world's resources are managed, he told the Associated Press.
Currently, there are 6.7 billion people in the world. China, India and the United States have the largest populations.
In 1999, there were six billion people on the planet, which means it should take about 13 years to add another billion. By comparison, the world's population reached one billion in 1800 and two billion 130 years later, Carl Haub, a demographer at the Population Reference Bureau, told the AP.
FDA Sued Over Alleged Painkiller Risks
The painkiller propoxyphene, sold under the brand names Darvoset and Darvon, has too many health risks to be left on the market, a consumer advocacy group alleges in its lawsuit filed Thursday against the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
The drug, which also is sold generically, has been involved in the accidental deaths of more than 2,000 people who took it since 1981, Public Citizen said in its petition two years ago to ban the medication.
In its lawsuit, Public Citizen said the FDA broke the law when it failed to act on the petition within the required six months, the Associated Press reported.
The advocacy group has said that there are safer, more effective painkillers than propoxyphene, which the lawsuit says is addictive and can cause cardiac problems including a slowed heartbeat, the AP reported. It can also cause sedation and confusion among the elderly, according to Dr. Sydney Wolfe, Director of Public Citizen's Health Research Group.