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December 23, 2013 - Weekly Roundup Archive


December 23, 2013

News Clips

  • Twin U.S. studies unlock mystery of how HIV causes AIDS
    U.S. scientists have discovered the basic mechanisms that allow HIV to wipe out the body's immune system and cause AIDS, which could lead to new approaches to treatment and research for a cure for the disease that affects 35 million people around the world. Instead of actively killing immune system cells known as CD4 T cells, much of the damage done by HIV occurs when the virus tries to invade these cells and fails, triggering an innate immune response that causes the cells to self-destruct in a fiery kind of cell suicide known as pyroptosis.
    Medline Plus
    December 19, 2013

  • Nurses' reassurances may not help kids' stress: study
    Nurses understandably want to reassure kids during a medical procedure. But a new Scottish study looking at dental care suggests that placating words might only increase a child's anxiety. Reassurances given at the beginning of a routine dental task were tied to more child distress compared to encouraging words offered near the end of the procedure. Children who were not anxious at the start of the visit and who heard reassurances about 15 seconds into the event had a 2 in 3 chance of getting more stressed by reassurances. For kids who were anxious at the 15-second mark, the chances jumped to nearly 3 in 4.
    Baltimore Sun
    December 19, 2013

  • Adolescents’ Weight and Socioeconomic Status May Affect Their Risk of Developing Esophageal and Gastric Cancer Later in Life
    Overweight adolescents were twice as likely as their normal weight peers to later develop esophageal cancer in a recent study from Israel. The study, which is published early online in Cancer, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Cancer Society, also found that lower socioeconomic status as well as immigration from higher risk countries were important determinants of gastric cancer.
    The Almagest
    December 19, 2013

  • Sixty percent of 12th graders do not view regular marijuana use as harmful
    The percentage of high-schoolers who see great risk from being regular marijuana users has dropped dramatically in the past 10 years, according to this year’s Monitoring the Future (MTF) survey, which measures drug use and attitudes among the nation’s eighth-, 10th-, and 12th-graders. 
    National Institutes of Health
    December 18, 2013

  • Taking Drug to Prevent HIV Doesn't Seem to Encourage Risk-Taking
    Study found those given Truvada did not practice riskier sex because of extra protection
    Should people in danger of contracting HIV because they have risky sex take a pill to prevent infection, or will the medication encourage them to take even more sexual risks? After years of debate on this question, a new international study suggests the medication doesn't lead people to stop using condoms or have more sex with more people.
    Medline Plus
    December 18, 2013

  • Gene Dysfunction Linked to Adolescent Behavioral Problems
    During the teenage years, adolescents' behaviors often appear to change. Young and sweet children start to become moody teenagers. During this new time in life, they also become more vulnerable to mental health issues, such as schizophrenia, depression and substance abuse or addiction. In a new study, researchers identified a "teen gene" that could be responsible for these teenage behavioral problems.
    Counsel & Heal
    December 17, 2013

  • Many ADHD Drugs Linked to Painful Erections: FDA
    Agency wants drug labels to reflect this rare risk
    In rare cases, Ritalin and some other drugs used to treat attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) can cause long-lasting and sometimes painful erections, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said Tuesday. If this condition -- called priapism -- is not treated immediately, it can cause permanent damage to the penis.
    Medline Plus
    December 17, 2013

  • Teen pot use could hurt brain and memory, new research suggests
    Teenage pot smokers could be damaging brain structures critical to memory and reasoning, according to new research that found changes in the brains of heavy users.
    NBC News
    December 16, 2013

  • Parent behaviors linked to kids' anxiety, depression
    Young people whose parents tend to fight with each other or are over involved in their kids' lives are at increased risk of depression and anxiety, according to a new comprehensive review of past studies.
    Medline Plus
    December 13, 2013

  • Suicide: The Irony of Despair
    We’ve made some progress in understanding mental illnesses over the past few decades, and even come up with drugs to help ameliorate their effects. But we have not made any headway against suicide.
    David Brooks, New York Times
    December 6, 2013

  • HPV common among sexually active young gay men
    teenagers who have had at least four sexual partners are at increased risk of contracting human papillomavirus (HPV), a new study suggests.
    Medline Plus
    December 5, 2013

  • New Research Shows More Than Half of Teens With Mental Health Disorders Do Not Receive Treatment
    “It’s still the case in this country that people don’t take psychiatric conditions as seriously as they should,” lead researcher E. Jane Costello of Duke University said in anews release. “This, despite the fact that these conditions are linked to a whole host of other problems.
    Reclaiming Futures
    December 3, 2013

  • Sexual risk lower among U.S. gay and bisexual men who accurately know their HIV status
    A new analysis of data from 20 major U.S. cities reveals continued signs of sexual risk among gay and bisexual men, but shows dramatically lower sexual risk among those who accurately know their HIV status. The findings were published today in CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
    Centers for Disease Control
    November 27, 2013

Recent Reports of Note

  • Suicides — United States, 2005–2009
    This report is part of the second CDC Health Disparities and Inequalities Report (CHDIR). The 2011 CHDIR (5) was the first CDC report to assess disparities across a wide range of diseases, behavior risk factors, environmental exposures, social determinants, and health-care access. The topic presented in this report is based on criteria that are described in the 2013 CHDIR Introduction (6). This report updates information that was presented in the 2011 CHDIR (7) by providing more current data on suicide in the United States. The purposes of this report are to discuss and raise awareness of differences in the characteristics of suicide decedents and to prompt actions to reduce these disparities.
    Mortality and Morbidity Report
    November 22, 2013 

International News