Recalled, drug-tainted supplements still available for purchase

Reuters, 22 October 2014
Author: Kathryn Doyle
“Long after the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued recalls for dietary supplements tainted with banned drugs, more than half of the tainted supplements were still available for purchase, a new study found.”
Find article here.

Think twice before buying breast milk online: study

Reuters, By Genevra Pittman, October 21, 2013

“Most of the breast milk sold over the Internet is contaminated with bacteria, a new study suggests. Researchers tested 101 milk samples they bought on milk sharing websites. They found that almost three quarters probably weren’t safe for babies, especially preemies. Those sites have thousands of ads from people selling breast milk, often new mothers who make more than their baby needs. The milk typically sells for $1 or $2 per ounce. “If you buy milk on the Internet, you have no idea what you’re getting,” said Sarah Keim. She led the study at The Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio.”

Find article here.

China tightens rules again to promote breast feeding

Reuters, AP, October 29, 2013

“The Chinese government will tighten rules again on makers of infant formula to promote the use of breast feeding, state media said on Tuesday, banning pictures of children on packaging and formula companies from promoting their wares in hospitals.  Milk powder is a highly sensitive topic in China after a scandal in 2008, when melamine added to baby milk killed at least six children and made thousands ill.  The incident seriously damaged consumer confidence in local firms and led to international competitors gaining market share.”

Find article here.

New York court to hear Bloomberg’s appeal to restore soda ban

Reuters, By Daniel Wiessner, October 17, 2013

“New York state’s highest court agreed on Thursday to hear Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s appeal of a decision striking down a ban on large sugary drinks in New York City, setting up the final showdown over one of the outgoing mayor’s most controversial policies. The Court of Appeals did not say why it had agreed to hear the appeal.”

Find article here.

Harvard study finds food expiration labels are misleading

Reuters, By Atossa Araxia Abrahamian, September 18, 2013

“Americans throw out billions of pounds of food every year because they falsely believe “sell-by” and “best-before” dates on package labels indicate food safety, researchers have found. A study published Wednesday by Harvard Law School and the Natural Resources Defense Council found that dates printed on packaged foods, which help retailers cycle through stocked products and allow manufacturers to indicate when a product is at its peak freshness, are inconsistent. They confuse consumers, leading many to throw out food before it actually goes bad.”

Find article here.

New laws follow death of 17-year-old student Henry Kwan

The Australian, By Mark Coultan, September 11, 2013

“NSW has become the first state in Australia to completely ban substances with psychoactive properties in an attempt to stop the proliferation of synthetic drugs.  The new laws follow interim bans on 19 products, which the states and the commonwealth implemented after the death of Sydney student Henry Kwan, 17, who jumped from a balcony after ingesting a $10 synthetic drug in June. Since then, police and hospitals in NSW have reported a drop in people reporting psychotic episodes. NSW Mental Health Minister Kevin Humphries said synthetic drugs had become prevalent in the mining and transport industries, where workplace drug-testing had driven users to use synthetic substances that were very difficult to detect.”

Find article here.

Judge orders Zimmer to pay Stryker $228 million in patent case

Reuters, By Jonathan Stempel, August 8, 2013

“A federal judge ordered Zimmer Holdings Inc to pay Stryker Corp more than $228 million for infringing its surgical irrigation patents, and in doing so tripled a damages award by a jury that found Zimmer’s conduct was willful. U.S. District Judge Robert Jonker in Grand Rapids, Michigan, also issued a permanent injunction banning Zimmer from selling infringing products, including from its Pulsavac Plus line. Zimmer said it plans to appeal Wednesday’s decision.”

Find article here.

Bard Executives Hid Vaginal-Mesh Device’s Flaw, Lawyer Says

Bloomberg News, By Jef Feeley, July 9, 2013

“CR Bard Inc. (BCR:US) officials knew some of the company’s vaginal-mesh devices were made of a plastic deemed unsuitable for human implantation and hid that flaw from doctors and women who used the products, a lawyer said. Executives of a Bard unit made implants for shoring up pelvic muscles out of plastic that carried a warning saying it shouldn’t be permanently implanted in people, Henry Garrard, a lawyer for a woman suing over the devices, told a jury in federal court in West Virginia.”

Find article here.

FDA Approves New Cigarettes in First Use of New Regulatory Power Over Tobacco

Time, By Alexandra Sifferlin, June 26, 2013

“It’s taken four years, but the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has finally exerted its authority to review and regulate cigarettes and certain tobacco products. Two new Newport non-menthol cigarettes will soon appear on the market, thanks to powers Congress granted to the FDA in 2009 to study the safety of cigarettes, cigarette tobacco and rolled tobacco. The approval does not indicate any endorsement by the FDA that the cigarettes are safe, or safer than currently sold smokes, only that the new products are not any more harmful than the company’s existing cigarettes. The agency also rejected four other new cigarettes from other manufacturers, stating that these makers failed to demonstrate that these cigarettes were similar to already available products.”

Find article here.

Jury finds no negligence in trial over man’s 8-month erection

Reuters, By Miles Miller, June 17, 2013

“A jury on Monday cleared a doctor of negligence in a lawsuit filed by a Delaware truck driver who underwent a penile implant procedure and ended up with an erection that lasted eight months. “We’re stunned,” attorney Michael Heyden said as he left the New Castle County courthouse, where his client Daniel Metzgar, 44, of Newark, Delaware, was suing urologist Thomas Desperito of Wilmington, Delaware. In April 2010, four months after the procedure was performed, Metzgar experienced swelling and went to a hospital, where he underwent testing. Before going to the hospital, Metzgar had been unable to reach Dr. Desperito. The doctor’s lawyer argued that hospital staff who performed tests were unfamiliar with penile implants and were not properly trained to do them. Therefore, the results from the tests, including images showing swelling, did not prove negligence.”

Find article here.