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Writer: Patrick Corcoran

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Bypass Surgeries Decline, But Are All Patients Better Off?

The frequency of heart bypass surgery has plummeted in recent years, a product of Americans leading healthier lifestyles and doctors adopting other treatments for blocked arteries. As HealthDay News reports, a study to be published in the Journal of the American Medical Association finds that the number of heart patients [...]

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5 Miners Dead, 9 Missing in Mexican Coal Mine Blast

A coal mine explosion in northern Mexico has killed five workers, and another another nine are trapped and feared dead. As the Associated Press reports, Mexican authorities had hoped to fly in Chilean experts who worked on the rescue of 33 trapped miners last year. But after rescuers discovered the [...]

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Japan Disaster a Drop in a Constant Global Shower of Radiation

The crisis at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant has heightened fears about the effects of radiation around the world, but experts say the worries are mostly unfounded. As The New York Times reports, concerns about radiation emissions have spurred a worldwide spike in the sales of radiation detectors and potassium [...]

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California’s Right to Stricter Auto Emissions Rules Upheld

California can continue to impose tighter controls on auto emissions than the rest of the country to clear up the state's smoggy skies. As the Los Angeles Times reports, a bid by industry groups to block the state's authority to supersede federal auto emissions standards has failed. A U.S. Court of [...]

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Brain Damage Linked to Botox Yields Jury Award of $212 Million

A federal jury in Virginia has awarded $212 million to a 67-year-old man who sued the maker of the drug Botox, claiming the medication caused brain damage and left him totally disabled. As the Richmond Times-Dispatch reports, Douglas Ray of Fredericksburg, Va., was given Botox to treat a hand tremor [...]

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Marketers Urged to Junk Ads for Unhealthy Kids’ Foods

As the U.S. struggles to address a childhood obesity epidemic, federal officials are seeking to rein in the ways unhealthy foods are marketed to minors. Proposed guidelines presented Thursday by the Interagency Working Group on Food Marketed to Children, which was established by Congress in 2009, would address a wide range [...]

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World’s Biggest Killers: Diseases Associated With Rich Countries

Malaria, tuberculous and other contagious diseases often are thought of as the leading global health threats, but the biggest killers worldwide actually are chronic afflictions -- including diabetes, cancer and heart disease -- often associated with the more prosperous countries. According to a new report from the World Health Organization, [...]

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Leprosy, an Ancient Scourge, is Linked to Armadillos in the U.S.

The majority of U.S. leprosy cases are the result of travel to far-away locales, but scientists also have identified a homegrown transmitter: the armadillo. Nearly one-third of the 150 to 250 annual U.S. cases of leprosy appear to be the result of contact with armadillos, the bumpy-looking creatures found in [...]

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Culture of Complicity Blamed in Japan’s Nuclear Disaster

As nuclear experts and industry watchdogs seek explanations for the institutional breakdown in Japan's Fukushima Daiichi disaster, many are pointing to a culture of cozy relationships among companies, regulators and politicians that produced a blase attitude toward safety. As The New York Times reports, in 2000, Kei Sugaoka, a Japanese-American [...]