Pharmaceuticals

4:50pm

Thu October 24, 2013
Shots - Health News

FDA Seeks To Tighten Controls On Hydrocodone Painkillers

Hydrocodone, sold as Vicodin and other brand names, may face tighter restrictions on prescribing and use.
Toby Talbot AP

The Food and Drug Administration Thursday announced that it wants the federal government to impose tough new restrictions on some of the most widely used prescription painkillers.

The FDA said it planned to recommend that Vicodin and other prescription painkillers containing the powerful opioid hydrocodone be reclassified from a "Schedule III" drug to a "Schedule II" drug, which would impose new restrictions on how they are prescribed and used.

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10:46am

Tue August 27, 2013
Shots - Health News

More Stroke Patients Now Get Clot-Busting Drug

Originally published on Wed August 28, 2013 10:14 am

A brain scan followed by quick drug treatment in the right patients can stop a stroke in its tracks.
iStockphoto.com

It's been a long and often controversial road, but U.S. doctors are finally embracing a drug that can halt strokes and prevent disabling brain damage.

An analysis of more than 1 million stroke patients shows that use of the 17-year-old drug, called alteplase (brand-name Activase), nearly doubled between 2003 and 2011.

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3:11pm

Wed August 14, 2013
Shots - Health News

Evidence Supports Pill To Prevent Some Prostate Cancers

Originally published on Fri August 16, 2013 6:40 am

The active ingredient in Propecia, a baldness remedy approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 1997, is showing new promise as a way to prevent some prostate cancers.
AP

Researchers say a cheap, generic pill called finasteride prevents almost 40 percent of low-grade prostate cancers without increasing the risk of dying from more aggressive tumors.

New evidence points to the drug as a potentially safer way to deal with prostate cancers that now get more intense treatment. Many prostate cancers that aren't destined to cause men serious health problems are often treated with surgery or radiation.

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12:59pm

Wed August 14, 2013
Shots - Health News

Industry Ties Raise Questions About Expert Medical Panels

Who's deciding which boxes he gets to check?
iStockphoto.com

When your doctor is looking to make a diagnosis or choose a treatment, she often checks to see what the experts recommend.

Guidelines from these groups of leading doctors help the average physician decide if it's time to prescribe drugs to lower a patient's cholesterol or turn to medicines for someone's depression.

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1:07am

Mon August 12, 2013
Shots - Health News

New Muscle Drugs Could Be The Next Big Thing In Sports Doping

Originally published on Mon August 12, 2013 9:03 am

Belgian Blue bulls look like they are made of muscle because they have a mutation in the gene that codes for the protein myostatin. In humans, as in other types of cattle, myostatin normally limits the number of muscle fibers that form before birth and then limits the growth of those fibers later on.
Courtesy of Se-Jin Lee and Alexandra McPherron PNAS

Research intended to help people with muscle-wasting diseases could be about to launch a new era in performance-enhancing drugs.

The research has produced several muscle-building drugs now being tested in people with medical problems, including muscular dystrophy, cancer and kidney disease. The drugs all work by blocking a substance called myostatin that the body normally produces to keep muscles from getting too big.

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