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Kids Who Are Sick Have Fewer Friends, Study Finds

A new study reveals that sick teens are more isolated than other kids, but they do not necessarily realize it and often think their friendships are stronger than they actually are. The findings rely on surveys conducted before the Internet era made it easier for outsider kids to reach out to teens like themselves. Still, the study offers insight into ...

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Depressed Smokers Less Likely to Stay Tobacco Free

Depressed smokers want to quit the nicotine habit just as much as non-depressed smokers, but a new study suggests that depression can put a kink in their success. The study, which appears online and in the January 2011 edition of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, showed that about 24 percent of surveyed callers to the California Smokers’ Helpline currently ...

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Heat Injury Rates on the Rise

Outdoor exercise and physical activity increase the risk for heat-related injuries, including dangerous heat stroke. A new study finds that heat-injury rates are on the rise for all age groups, and football-playing boys are among the most vulnerable. Part of the problem is people neglecting to take commonsense precautions − like staying hydrated − and knowing when to come in ...

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Teens Get More Ear Infections When Someone Smokes at Home

Family members who smoke are more apt to feel it is OK to smoke indoors as their children get older. But in households with secondhand smoke, children between 12 and 17 are 1.67 times more prone to have recurrent ear infections compared to adolescents who live in a smoke-free environment, a large new study reveals. Harvard researchers analyzed smoking behavior ...

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Limiting Salt Lowers Blood Pressure and Health Risks in Diabetes

For patients living with diabetes, reducing the amount of salt in their daily diet is key to warding off serious threats to their health, a new review of studies finds. In the Cochrane review, the authors evaluated 13 studies with 254 adults who had either type 1 or type 2 diabetes. For an average duration of one week, participants were ...

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Ginseng Might Boost Brain Power, but Evidence Is Weak

Many people believe that the popular herb ginseng can improve thinking ability and prevent or even treat dementia. However, a comprehensive review of research failed to find convincing evidence of these benefits. “Ginseng appears to have some beneficial effects on cognition, behavior and quality of life,” said JinSong Geng, M.D., lead review author. “But at present, recommendations about [whether to ...

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Stem Cell Treatment Is Effective for Certain Cases of Acute Leukemia

Some adults and children with acute leukemia could benefit from certain transplants of blood stem cells, but the benefits are not equal across all cases of leukemia, according to a new review of 15 studies. Acute leukemias — classified as either acute myeloid leukemia (AML) or acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) — are fast-moving cancers that attack the bone marrow and ...

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Dialysis Center Choice Makes Difference in Death Risk

If you need dialysis for advanced kidney disease, where you get it could make a big difference. A large study found that patients in certain large chain facilities are significantly more likely to die than those treated elsewhere. Mortality was also higher in for-profit than non-profit dialysis centers. “The differences were not minor,” said Yi Zhang, Ph.D., lead study author. ...

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“White-Noise” Therapy Alone Not Enough to Curb Tinnitus

Tinnitus — what many think of as “ringing in the ears” — is the perception of sound without any real acoustic stimulation. Sound masking therapy, a common component of tinnitus treatment, is of uncertain benefit when used on its own, a new evidence review finds. Tinnitus sufferers might hear one sound or multiple ones; they can hear them continuously or ...

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When Mental Health Meds Are Out of Reach, Hospitalization More Likely

Too often, mental health patients have problems accessing or paying for their prescription drugs under Medicaid. The results — longer hospital stays and more emergency room visits — are hard on patients and costly for the entire health care system, a new study finds. Lead author Joyce West, Ph.D., and colleagues analyzed Medicaid data from 10 states and found that ...

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