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June 2, 2011 | By Rong-Gong Lin II and Jessica Garrison, Los Angeles Times
The medical ethics controversy that erupted when Nadya Suleman gave birth to octuplets two years ago took a decisive turn Wednesday when the California medical board announced it will revoke the license of the Beverly Hills fertility doctor who helped the single mother of six conceive eight more children. The "Octomom" case focused national attention on what critics have called "the Wild West" of fertility medicine. And Dr. Michael Kamrava, who assisted Suleman by implanting her with 12 embryos, became a symbol to some of the problems in the burgeoning industry.
May 30, 2011 | By Amber Dance, Special to the Los Angeles Times
A pouch full of brand-new cells may one day reduce the need for people with Type 1 diabetes to take daily insulin shots. ViaCyte Inc. of San Diego has already used its technique to cure diabetes in hundreds of mice, says Eugene Brandon, one of the company's directors. ViaCyte hopes to begin human trials of its implants, which are made from embryonic stem cells, by 2013, aided by $26 million in grants and loans from the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine, the state's stem cell funding agency.
May 25, 2011 | By Shari Roan, Los Angeles Times / For the Booster Shots blog
Contraceptives such as IUDs and implants are finally being embraced by U.S. women after many years of doubts and controversy. In a new study, researchers at the Guttmacher Institute looked at data from the National Survey of Family Growth from 2006 and 2008 and found many more women are using IUDs such as the Copper T or the levonorgestrel intrauterine system (known as Mirena). Similarly, implants inserted under the skin in the arm, such as Implanon, are becoming more popular. The ratio of women using these long-lasting, reversible methods increased from 2.4% in 2002 to 5.6% in 2006 to 2008.
March 30, 2011 | By Nathaniel Popper, Los Angeles Times
Edward Zuckerberg pulls his iPhone out of his jeans pocket and hits the familiar blue Facebook icon. He's eager to show off his latest effort to market his suburban dental practice. The man known as "Painless Dr. Z" is offering a free teeth bleaching kit to the first 10 patients who use their smartphones to tell their Facebook friends that they've stopped by his office. On the receptionist's desk, a blue sticker exhorts clients to "'Like' us on Facebook. " The effort has paid off. The dental practice has more than 1,100 fans.
March 27, 2011 | By Kavita Daswan, Special to the Los Angeles Times
"Trout pout" ? overly plumped lips that are ubiquitous on Hollywood's red carpets ? can afflict any woman who has tried to enhance naturally thin lips. But a technique from Europe that's rolling out across cosmetic surgery practices in Beverly Hills and beyond aims to counteract the billowy, bee-stung lips that are the result of having fillers, collagen and fat injected into the area. PermaLip, an Food and Drug Administration-approved implant that looks like a clear-colored piece of elastic, is now being used in practices in Florida, Texas, New York and California.
March 24, 2011 | By xxx xxx, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
February 10, 2011 | By Thomas H. Maugh II, Los Angeles Times
Prenatal surgery for the most severe form of the birth defect spina bifida doubled the number of children who were able to walk unassisted by the age of 30 months and halved the percentage who had to have shunts implanted after birth to remove water from the brain, researchers reported Wednesday. The surgery, however, presented some risks to both children and mothers: Infants were more likely to be born preterm and mothers suffered a thinning of the uterine wall that would require all future births to end in a caesarean section.
February 7, 2011 | By Mary Forgione, Tribune Health
First breast implants, now jaw implants. The implant news just keeps on coming. The Food and Drug Administration on Monday ordered three manufacturers of temporomandibular joint, or TMJ, implants to study the length of time these jaw implants remain effective before they are removed or replaced because of pain or other reasons. The federal agency reviewed what it called "TMJ implant-related adverse event reports" and found that a substantial number of patients had implants replaced within three years or less.
February 4, 2011 | By Shari Roan, Los Angeles Times
For years, Michell Anne Kimball of San Diego considered breast augmentation but worried about the health risks. Three years ago, the 47-year-old decided the time was right, consulted with a plastic surgeon and, after four more months of pondering, received silicone implants. She loves them, she said. And she continues to agonize over them. "Are these things safe or not? Are we ever really going to know?" Though modern breast implants have been around for decades, questions of safety continue to plague augmentation even as the artificially enhanced bosom has become common.
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