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The Med & Mic™ 1.15.24 – 1.19.24 #COVID #Cancer #Food #Nutrition #Wastewater #DrugPrices

#Doctor, did you speak to the #media about any of these topics this week? How did it go? 

>> COVID vaccines and medicines: benefits and surprises

>> Cancer patterns

>> Food for thought

The Med & Mic™ 1.15.24 – 1.19.24

A medical news blog post

from the author of “Scoop, MD”

This Week In Medical News

In COVID news…

Hybrid Immunity Protects Mom and Newborn

Immunity from prior COVID infection plus vaccination is associated with a greater likelihood of protection at delivery for mothers and infants compared to prior infection alone, based on an analysis of antibodies. The immunity for infants lasts six months. Babies are not eligible to receive the vaccine until they are six months old. (Healio, C. Stulpin, 1.15.24)

Mixed Bag for Paxlovid

Paxlovid shortens illness with COVID and reduces viral load, however, it does not reduce the risk for long COVID. With treatment, symptoms went away 1.5 days sooner compared to placebo, and at one week, people who got the medication had less virus in their system. However, in a different study involving a survey of more than 100,000 people, the rates of long COVID were similar for vaccinated, non hospitalized people who took Paxlovid and those who did not. (MedPage Today, K. Kahn, 1.17.24, and Healio, S. Feller, 1.16.24)

In cancer news…

Rates Up for Common Cancers

The American Cancer Society says rates for six of the ten most common cancers are on the rise: breast, prostate, melanoma, kidney, pancreas, and uterine. Lung, colorectal, and pancreas cancers cause the most deaths. Survival has improved, though, from 49% in the mid-1970s to 69% in the 2010s. Thyroid, prostate, and testicular cancers have the highest survival rates. (USA Today, K. Alltucker, 1.17.24)

Handheld AI device for skin cancer

The FDA has cleared a  device that uses light and artificial intelligence to detect skin cancer. The device is currently available in Europe and Australia. (Reuters, C. Santhosh, 1.17.24)

In food as medicine news…

Plant Protein for Healthy Aging 

A diet rich in plant protein could help women stay healthy as they age. In an analysis of more than 48,000 women, for every 3% increase in plant protein in their diet (such as lentils, green peas, spinach, and broccoli), there was a 38% higher likelihood of fewer chronic diseases, greater physical mobility, and less cognitive decline. (NBC, L. Carroll, 1.17.24)

A Daily Multivitamin Could Fortify Memory

In a clinical trial comparing a daily multivitamin to placebo, those who took the multivitamin showed better reasoning, attention, and planning on cognitive tests and slowed deterioration by about two years. It is unclear which specific vitamins might be protective or how they might work. (NBC News, K. Sullivan, 1.17.24)

Alkaline Water Doesn’t Stem Kidney Stones

Trendy bottled water advertised as “alkaline” is not likely to prevent kidney stones. These products have a pH of 8 to 10, whereas tap water has a pH of 7.5. The increase in pH is not enough to stave off kidney stones in people who are susceptible. Orange juice may be a better over-the-counter alternative. (HealthDay, D. Thompson, 1.15.24)

In public health news…

Mpox in Wastewater 

While it wasn’t initially certain, it turns out water that goes down the sink, shower drain or toilet can be analyzed for mpox. When there were 15 or more people infected in a community, there was a 76% chance it could be detected in the wastewater. The CDC is pushing to use sewage to track more diseases as an early warning system. (AP, M. Stobbe, 1.18.24)

In medical economics news…

A Price Hike for Medicines

Drug companies are raising prices on more than 700 medications, including popular weight-loss drugs. This year the prices have increased by 4.5%. For the past five years, the increase was 5% per year. Other types of medicines affected include drugs for autoimmune diseases, pain, blood thinning, and depression. (CBS News, A. Picchi, 1.18.24)

Click the follow button to keep up on the medical news of the week. 

For more about preparing for media interviews, read Scoop, MD: the Doctor’s Guide to Media Interviews and Opportunities on Amazon Kindle Vella.

Remember: this post is for informational purposes only and may not be the best fit for you and your personal situation. It shall not be construed as medical advice. The information and education provided here is not intended or implied to supplement or replace professional medical treatment, advice, and/or diagnosis, or the advice of your own physician. Always check with your own physician or medical professional before trying or implementing any information read here.

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