medicine

Electrical implant allows paralyzed man to move his legs

Electrical implant allows paralyzed man to move his legs

There isn't usually much doctors can do after a spinal cord injury that results in paralysis, but a new breakthrough from Mayo Clinic may give reason to hope. The clinic reports that an electrical implant placed near the site of a spinal cord injury allowed a paralyzed patient to make voluntary movements with his legs, which is a pretty big breakthrough.

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Study: Ibuprofen poses major cardiac arrest risk

Study: Ibuprofen poses major cardiac arrest risk

Ask anyone, and there’s a good chance they’ve casually taken a tablet or two of ibuprofen to stave off a headache or other minor ailment. The general perception is that ibuprofen is a pretty safe drug, the small risk of stomach ulcers aside, and that’s why it is available in large quantities for low prices over the counter. According to a new study, though, this medication is associated with big increases in cardiac arrest risk, so much so that some professionals are calling for it to be made prescription-only.

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Birth Control pills saved 200k lives in 10 years, say scientists

Birth Control pills saved 200k lives in 10 years, say scientists

A study conducted by a group at Oxford showed that 200,000 lives have been saved from endometrial cancer over a 9-year period. This group, known better as the Collaborative Group on Epidemiological Studies on Endometrial Cancer (Oxford), showed that "about 400 000 cases of endometrial cancer before the age of 75 years have been prevented over the past 50 years (1965–2014) by oral contraceptives." Their conclusion, based on this study, is that use of oral contraceptives (birth control pills), confers long-term protection against edometrial cancer.

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Alzheimer’s treatment might someday just use flickering LEDs

Alzheimer’s treatment might someday just use flickering LEDs

Alzheimer’s disease is a growing cause for concern in the world today. In the US alone, about 5 million people are reported to be affected. And that number is predicted to grow even more in the very near future. And as there is no known cure for it, Alzheimer’s patients and their families are left to resort to treatments that are usually expensive and, in the long run, only temporary. Researchers at MIT, however, may have come across a possible new mode of treatment that shows promising results. And it involves nothing more than flashing LEDs lights at eyes.

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Methylene Blue could help improve memory, new study suggests

Methylene Blue could help improve memory, new study suggests

Methylene Blue is a drug you've possibly never heard of before, but it's been in use for nearly a century. These days, the drug is primarily used to treat methemoglobinemia, a disease that affects the ability of soft tissue to absorb oxygen from the bloodstream, but a new study suggests it may have some exciting uses for improving memory and attention.

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DARPA program seeks ‘rugged drugs’ that don’t expire

DARPA program seeks ‘rugged drugs’ that don’t expire

Much like the food in your fridge and the cleaning supplies in your closet, the drugs — both over the counter and prescription — in your medicine cabinet have an expiration date. While that expiration date isn’t a hard and fast rule in most cases, at least according to past research on the matter, it does mark a time when one can expect the medication to start losing potency, making it difficult to take proper dosages. Thanks to a new synthetic protein recently detailed by DARPA, however, that reality may itself soon be obsolete.

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Pain killer patch releases ibuprofen over 12 hours

Pain killer patch releases ibuprofen over 12 hours

Ibuprofen can be seen as one of the most useful medications available today; just two to four pills of the pain killer can help treat headaches to muscle pain. But researchers may have just improved its effectiveness by developing the world's first ibuprofen patch capable of releasing the drug over a 12 hour period once applied to the skin. That sounds much better than having to remember to take the pills every four hours or so.

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Researchers use Microsoft Kinect to take better X-rays

Researchers use Microsoft Kinect to take better X-rays

Next time your parents claim that nothing good would come from gaming, this little anecdote might tide things in your favor. Of course, it's gaming technology that's in focus here, but we're not going to split hairs. Microsoft's Kinect controller has become one of the most hacked and repurposed gaming peripherals in the market and that kind of modification might soon benefit medicine as well. Researchers from the Washington University School of Medicine have developed a way to reduce radiation exposure when taking X-rays by reusing the technology found in the Kinect.

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3D printed medicine gets FDA stamp of approval

3D printed medicine gets FDA stamp of approval

Is there anything 3D printing can't do these days? From toys, to chocolate, to dog legs, to house parts. And now we even have 3D printed drugs. Now that in itself isn't really a novel feat, considering 3D printed food. The success that Aprecia Pharmaceuticals achieved is in actually getting the US Food and Drug Administration to approve it. This makes its SPRITRAM seizure drug to be the first 3D printed medication to receive FDA approval, perhaps opening the doors to even more such products in the future.

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Bioengineered bacteria change color in urine to indicate diseases

Bioengineered bacteria change color in urine to indicate diseases

Science is going to great lengths to harness the ability to detect disease before it can wreak havoc on the human body. From a cancer detecting bra, to a smartphone accessory that can detect HIV, new medical gadgets are making it easier to identify what ails us. Recently, researchers have decided to do away with the gadgetry altogether, letting bacteria do the work. These new, mutant bacteria are bioengineered to detect specific diseases, and change the color of the patient's urine for a fast diagnosis.

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Robotic pill being developed as replacement for injection medications

Robotic pill being developed as replacement for injection medications

At some point in the future, you may no longer need to suffer through injections to have certain medications administered. The Swiss pharmaceutical company Novartis and the US biotech startup Rani Therapeutics have revealed they will together in developing a "robotic pill" that could simply be swallowed and then deliver drugs to the body via needles made of sugar. This has the potential to make taking certain medication much more convenient for patients, as it could be a new delivery method for drugs that have never been possible in pill form before.

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Quick blood test can triage radiation exposure victims, saving lives

Quick blood test can triage radiation exposure victims, saving lives

In the rare, but serious, cases of a radiation leak like the Fukushima nuclear plant's meltdown, first responders are tasked with sending radiation victims to triage based on their level of exposure. A new genetics-based blood test could be a faster, more accurate way to assess how individual victims will respond to radiation. Researchers from Harvard Medical School and New York City's Montefiore Medical Center have created a method of identifying long-term damage from radiation, immediately. Their technique involved looking beyond blood cell counts and delving into blood-bound genes.

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