June 12, 2012 |
More than a quarter of L.A.'s homeless adults are infected with the hepatitis C virus, and nearly half of them don't know it, UCLA researchers reported this week. Almost none of them have been treated for the infection, suggesting that the public health system could face a major financial burden as their infections progress to cirrhosis of the liver and end-stage liver disease. The hepatitis C virus, known as HCV, represents a potentially lethal infection. It is transmitted through the blood, primarily by needles used for injecting drugs.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 21, 2012 |
Robin Gibb, a singer and songwriter who joined two of his brothers in forming the Bee Gees pop group that helped define the sound of the disco era with the best-selling 1977 soundtrack to"Saturday Night Fever," has died. He was 62. Gibb died Sunday after battling cancer and while recuperating from intestinal surgery, family spokesman Doug Wright announced. This spring Gibb had been hospitalized in London with advanced colorectal cancer. He had intestinal surgery in March and, after contracting pneumonia, was unable to attend the April 10 premiere in London of "The Titanic Requiem," a classical composition he wrote with his son, Robin-John, to coincide with the 100th anniversary observance of the luxury ocean liner's sinking.
May 6, 2012
Re "Hepatitis a new worry for baby boomers," May 2 In the late 1960s I was a Peace Corps volunteer teaching school in Uganda. I became ill and required blood transfusions. Fast forward 30 years and I'm donating my own blood for surgery. Imagine my surprise when the Red Cross informed me that I had hepatitis C, something I had never heard of. I had contracted it from those long-ago transfusions. Once my initial panic subsided, I was fortunate to find an excellent heptologist who eventually persuaded me to undergo treatment.
April 27, 2012 |
Medical errors tend to occur more frequently at night and on weekends due to increased sleepiness, shortage of staff and a variety of other factors. Overall, such errors represent a significant problem for the medical community. A 1999 report from the Institute of Medicine showed that all medical errors -- including daytime errors, as well as night and weekend mistakes -- cause as many as 98,000 deaths each year and cost as much as $29 billion annually. Transplants are considered a source of concern by many experts because the surgeries occur when organs become available, and that is just as likely to be at an off-hour as during normal business hours.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 3, 2011 |
Norman Smith, who has liver cancer, was placed on the transplant list at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center last year. But early this year, doctors removed him because he was using medical marijuana and failed to show up for a drug test. To get back on the list, Smith, 63, has to spend six months avoiding medical marijuana, submitting to random drug tests and receiving counseling. He is still undergoing chemotherapy and radiation for the cancer, which recently returned after being in remission.
November 10, 2011 |
Should alcoholics who have blown out their livers be eligible to receive new livers from organ donors? The answer has been no - at least not until these patients have demonstrated that they won't squander a new organ. Patients with severe alcoholic hepatitis are usually required to go six months without a drink in order to get on the transplant list. But this requirement, while understandable given the scarcity of livers for patients in need, amounts to a death sentence for 70% to 80% of these patients; most of them don't even last two months without a new liver.
November 8, 2011 |
Former undisputed heavyweight boxing champion Joe Frazier, who died Monday at the age of 67 after a brief bout with liver cancer, also had diabetes -- a major risk factor associated with the disease. Diabetes has been associated with the highest percentage (34%) of cases of the most common type of liver cancer, according to research by the National Cancer Institute. (The next highest was alcohol-related disorders, with 24%). Men and older adults are at higher risk of the cancer as well.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 1, 2011 |
Dr. Richard R. Lopez Jr., who once ran the liver transplant program at St. Vincent Medical Center, was acquitted by a federal jury Friday on charges that he led a conspiracy to cover up the misallocation of an organ in 2003. Lopez has acknowledged that he helped decide to take an organ intended for one patient and use it for another more than 50 places down the waiting list — a serious violation of transplant rules that prompted the hospital to shut down the program. At issue was what role Lopez may have played in an extensive effort to hide the breach.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 30, 2011 |
One of the most widespread groundwater contaminants in the nation is more dangerous to humans than earlier thought, a federal agency has determined, in a decision that could raise the cost of cleanups nationwide, including large areas of the San Fernando and San Gabriel valleys. The final risk assessment for trichloroethylene by the Environmental Protection Agency found that the widely used industrial solvent causes kidney and liver cancer, lymphoma and other health problems.
August 23, 2011 |
He didn't order the signature bowl of hog guts, but Vice President Joe Biden's stop last week for lunch at a Beijing eatery during his state visit has proved a boon for the family-owned business. Diners have been lining up outside Yaoji Chaogan, reportedly waiting as long as an hour for a table at the no-frills restaurant, which specializes in pork liver and intestine soup. "Usually there aren't so many people at this time, and you can get a table quickly. But customers began to gather all day long after Biden's visit," a 76-year-old regular customer told the Global Times.