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HEALTH
February 27, 2012 | By Amber Dance, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Bonnie Addario didn't even know there was a word for what was happening to her. As if lung cancer weren't bad enough, the 54-year-old had lost 30 pounds off her normally 130-pound frame. Her life was limited to her husband's Barcalounger, where she had to recline because she lacked the strength to sit up straight. "It affected everything I did," says Addario, who is alive and well nine years later in San Carlos, Calif. "I literally could not get up and down the stairs. " There is a name for what Addario experienced: cachexia.
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HEALTH
September 13, 2010 | Joe Graedon, Teresa Graedon, The People's Pharmacy
Dozens of drugs can weaken bones. Oral corticosteroids such as prednisone are especially problematic when used for long periods of time. Even inhaled steroids (Advair, Flovent, Symbicort, etc.) may pose problems over time. People with osteoporosis should work closely with a doctor to develop a treatment strategy. I have taken prednisone for years due to an arthritic condition. Because of stomach upset, my doctor has prescribed Nexium to prevent an ulcer. I was recently diagnosed with osteoporosis and wonder what can be done to counteract the bone-damaging effects of my medicine.
NEWS
March 28, 2014 | By Scott Martelle
It's not often these days that we see some sanity in death-penalty cases, but judges in Oklahoma and Texas ruled Wednesday and Thursday that condemned prisoners in those states have a right to know what exactly they are going to be killed with. This will likely inflame death-penalty advocates, but these are good, constitutional decisions. The issue centers on the source of drugs to be used in executions. As the United States becomes more isolated from the world in its embrace of the death penalty, it has become harder for states to procure the drugs used in the different combinations to kill people.
NATIONAL
April 7, 2012 | By Kim Murphy, Los Angeles Times
SEATTLE - U.S. Air Force pilot Patrick Burke's day started in the cockpit of a B-1 bomber near the Persian Gulf and proceeded across nine time zones as he ferried the aircraft home to South Dakota. Every four hours during the 19-hour flight, Burke swallowed a tablet of Dexedrine, the prescribed amphetamine known as "go pills. " After landing, he went out for dinner and drinks with a fellow crewman. They were driving back to Ellsworth Air Force Base when Burke began striking his friend in the head.
SPORTS
January 17, 2013 | By Lance Pugmire
Lance Armstrong calmly told Oprah Winfrey in a highly anticipated taped television interview Thursday night that he took a variety of performance-enhancing drugs while winning a record seven Tour de France titles, but that in his mind at the time, he didn't consider it cheating. At the start of a stunning question-and-answer exchange, the disgraced rider responded to a series of yes-or-no questions, answering affirmatively when asked whether he had taken specific drugs during a period when he was one of the most celebrated athletes in the world.
SCIENCE
April 23, 2014 | By Mary MacVean
Two drugs given to people who suffer migraines reduced the frequency of their headaches in early trials, scientists said. The test results “may potentially represent a new era in preventive therapy for migraine,” Dr. Peter Goadsby, an author on studies of both drugs, said in a statement. One of the researchers called migraine headaches the third most common medical disorder in the world. Both drugs must undergo larger trials to confirm the results. Both drugs are intended to prevent rather than treat migraine headaches, and the studies of them are the first to test monoclonal antibodies for migraine prevention, the scientists said.
SCIENCE
May 6, 2013 | By Melissa Healy
The Food and Drug Administration is warning physicians that women who suffer migraine headaches and are pregnant or may become pregnant should not use the drugs valproate or valproic acid to prevent the severe headaches, in light of new evidence showing those taking the drugs during pregnancy have children with lower IQ scores than women who do not take them. That warning represents a strengthening of a boxed warning that already appears on these prescription medications, which are used to control epileptic seizures, to treat bipolar disorder, and to prevent and relieve migraine headaches.
NEWS
April 14, 2012 | By Christi Parsons
CARTAGENA, Colombia -- President Obama said Saturday that he is open to a debate about current drug laws but that he believes legalizing narcotics could lead to even greater problems in those countries hardest hit by trafficking and violence. Obama told Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos on Saturday that he is willing to discuss whether current laws are "doing more harm than good. " But "legalization is not the answer," Obama said. As president of Colombia, which was ravaged for years by drug-related violence, Santos raised the question of legalization during this weekend's Summit of the Americas meeting here.
NATIONAL
January 16, 2014 | By Matt Pearce and John M. Glionna
ALBUQUERQUE - Police were positive David Eckert had some drugs this time. On Jan. 2, 2013, officers in Deming, N.M., handcuffed Eckert, 63, in a Wal-Mart parking lot after a routine traffic stop turned into an attempted narcotics bust. Police said their drug dog, Leo, had sniffed something on the driver's seat of Eckert's truck. According to a lawsuit Eckert later filed, the officers said Eckert, who had a history of drug arrests, also had a history of hiding meth in his anal cavity.
NATIONAL
October 10, 2013 | By Molly Hennessy-Fiske
HOUSTON - Texas carried out yet another controversial execution Wednesday. Michael Yowell, 43, was put to death by lethal injection about 7 p.m. for killing his parents at their Lubbock home 15 years ago. The drug-fueled attack also left his 89-year-old grandmother dead. Yowell was the 14th inmate executed this year in Texas, the country's most active death penalty state, which has executed more than 500 prisoners . But Yowell did not die like the others. Last month, Texas officials were facing a shortage of the drug used in lethal injections, pentobarbital, after the manufacturer announced that the drug was unsafe for use in lethal injections and restricted its sale.
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