Health Highlights: May 21, 2012

HealthDay + More
  • Bee Gee Robin Gibb Dies of Cancer
  • Woman With Flesh-Eating Disease Breathing on Her Own
  • Officials Lift Quarantines at Two California Dairy Farms

Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:

Bee Gee Robin Gibb Dies of Cancer

Former Bee Gees member Robin Gibb died Sunday "following his long battle with cancer and intestinal surgery," his family said in a statement released by Gibb's representative Doug Wright.

Gibb was forced to cancel several appearances in 2011. He was hospitalized briefly in 2011 for what doctors said was an inflamed colon and had surgery for intestinal problems in March, the Associated Press reported.

Brothers Robin, Maurice and Barry Gibb shot to fame in the 1970s when they wrote and performed a number of hit songs for the movie "Saturday Night Fever." Maurice died in 2003.

Robin Gibb was the second disco-era star to die this week. On Thursday, Donna Summer died of cancer in Florida, the AP reported.

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Woman With Flesh-Eating Disease Breathing on Her Own

The 24-year-old Georgia woman with flesh-eating disease is now breathing on her own, according to her father.

Late Sunday, Andy Copeland blogged that Aimee Copeland had been off the ventilator for more than 10 hours and was cracking jokes and displaying other typical behaviors, the Associated Press reported.

Aimee developed a rare condition called necrotizing fasciitis after her left leg was cut in a zip line accident on May 1. Most of her left leg has been amputated and doctors said last week that her hands and remaining foot would also need to be amputated.

In his latest update, Andy Copeland said he's grateful for the outpouring of concern for his daughter, the AP reported.

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Officials Lift Quarantines at Two California Dairy Farms

Quarantines have been lifted on two California dairies that were under investigation after a case of mad cow disease, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said Friday.

Officials said they found no connection between the illness and food the diseased cow might have eaten. And tests by the World Organization for Animal Health confirmed U.S. lab findings that the cow's illness was caused by a random mutation that was unlikely to affect other cows in the herd, the Associated Press reported.

The investigation was launched in April when the carcass of nearly 11-year-old cow from an unnamed Tulare County dairy tested positive for mad cow disease. It was the fourth case in the United States and the third "atypical" strain to be discovered.

Officials are still trying to track down at least a dozen other living cows that were raised on a calf ranch with the sick cow, the AP reported.

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