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FDA warns about infections from another type of medical scope

FDAFederal officials issued a new warning about medical scopes Thursday, alerting health care providers about reports of bronchoscopes spreading infections to patients even after the reusable devices were cleaned.

The Food and Drug Administration said it's investigating reports that bronchoscopes used in the throat and lungs weren't adequately disinfected and sickened patients. The agency said no deaths have been reported so far.


FDA halts sales of four R.J. Reynolds cigarette brands

FDA bans some cigarettesThe Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday banned sales of four cigarette brands from R.J. Reynolds because they did not meet the agency’s safety review requirements.

Under FDA rules, companies that launch new cigarettes must show that the products are essentially the same as older products in terms of health risks. The FDA said four brands from R.J. Reynolds failed to show that they don’t raise new safety concerns.


Man fitted with robotic hand wired directly into his brain can 'feel' again

Robot hand can feelA new advanced robotic hand that is wired directly into the brain has been successfully tested, allowing paralysed man to “feel”.

The hand, developed by the Applied Physics Laboratory at Johns Hopkins university, is part of a research project into advanced replacement limbs funded by the US military’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (Darpa).


Planned Parenthood files suit over Arkansas decision to cut funding

Planned Parenthood law suitPlanned Parenthood filed a lawsuit in federal court on Friday seeking to a block a move by Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson that cut state funding for certain programs the reproductive health provider has in the state, the group said.

Arkansas was one of several Republican-controlled states that have cut funds for the organization in the wake of the release of videos by anti-abortion activist group Center for Medical Progress, in which a Planned Parenthood official is seen talking about transactions involving fetal tissue.

Planned Parenthood has denied any wrongdoing.


Protein linked to Alzheimer's could be spread during surgery, say researchers

Protein linked to Alzheimers transferred via surgeryFragments of sticky proteins found in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s disease could potentially be spread to others via contaminated surgical instruments and other medical procedures, scientists warn.

Researchers called for further work into the possibility that metal instruments used in medical procedures could pick up harmful proteins which survive conventional sterilisation with formaldehyde.


California lawmakers approve assisted dying legislation

Right to die legislation in CaliforniaCalifornia lawmakers have approved a measure that would give terminally ill patients the ability to end their lives, in a 42 to 33 vote that is seen as reflecting a changed perception among Californians towards a citizen’s right to die.

The bill, AB-15, is similar to SB-128, which stalled in July after the assembly’s health committee did not have the support to send it to the full body. Co-sponsors Susan Eggman, Luis Alejo and Mark Stone, all Democrats, brought back the legislation after seeing public perception change over physician-assisted dying.


Study: Pollution, weather linked to post-heart attack health

Pollution and heart attacksResearchers presenting at this year's European Society of Cardiology Congress have connected patient status after experiencing heart attack with weather and everyday pollutants.

According to the study, which involved about 2,300 patients who had heart attacks between 2006 and 2012, environmental conditions have an effect on a person's risk of heart attack as well as post-MI treatments.


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