MedTruth
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Today is the deadline set by U.S. Senators Elizabeth Warren and Tina Smith for the Food and Drug Administration to respond to questions regarding the safety of imported drugs during the ongoing pandemic. More than half of drugs and nearly three-quarters of active ingredients sold in the U.S. are made overseas.

The senators are concerned about reductions in on-site quality inspections of foreign drug manufacturing facilities, which have plunged more than 60% since March. …


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Johnson & Johnson intends to appeal a record $2.1 billion talc verdict to the highest court in the land after striking out in the Missouri Supreme Court.

The state high court on Nov. 3 refused to hear J&J’s appeal, letting stand the multibillion dollar jury verdict, the largest award on record to women who claimed that talcum powder caused their ovarian cancer, according to reports in Law.com and Law360.

In 2018, a Missouri jury found that J&J’s asbestos-contaminated talcum powder had led to ovarian cancer in the 22 female plaintiffs and even death in some cases.

Asbestos is a known carcinogen with no safe levels of exposure. …


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Breast augmentation can play a major role in gender affirmation for individuals living with gender dysphoria, but what happens when the devices meant to affirm your identity diminish your health?

Even as MedTruth has reported on the experiences of cisgender women struggling with breast implant illness and breast-implant associated anaplastic large cell lymphoma, the stories of transgender women have largely been left untold, until now.

This fact reflects the large gulf in our understanding of trans-specific health issues that fall outside of HIV and mental health, said Dr. …


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The Food and Drug Administration is warning against taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or NSAIDs, at 20 weeks of pregnancy or later due to the risk of rare but serious fetal kidney problems and pregnancy-related complications.

The new warning will appear on prescription and over-the-counter NSAIDs, according to an Oct. 15 FDA statement. These widely used medications, which include Advil, Motrin, Aleve, Celebrex and their generics, are taken to treat fever or pain.

The Problem With NSAIDs in Later Pregnancy

Beginning at around 20 weeks, a fetus’s kidneys begin producing most of the amniotic fluid that surrounds it. …


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The Food and Drug Administration is warning certain individuals to avoid getting “silver” fillings — known as dental amalgams — due to the potential risk of “adverse health effects of mercury exposure.”

The warning, issued as part of dental amalgam guidelines released last month, applies to:

  • Pregnant and nursing women
  • Developing fetuses and newborns
  • Children under age 6
  • Patients with preexisting neurological conditions
  • Patients with impaired kidney function
  • Individuals with metal allergies to copper, tin, silver or mercury

Dental amalgams are widely used to fill cavities. More than 100 million people have these amalgams, according to the American Dental Association, that are typically made of a mixture of tin, copper and silver and about 50% mercury, by weight. …


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For the more than 34 million Americans with diabetes, checking blood sugar levels, staying physically active and understanding the health risks can mean major adjustments in lifestyle, livelihood and overall well being.

The constant worries about health and unwanted complications, while juggling frequent doctors’ appointments and myriad prescriptions, can take a toll and ultimately may lead to “diabetes distress.”

Such distress is common, affecting up to 50% of people with diabetes in any given 18-month period. Managing diabetes distress begins with understanding your symptoms, then taking charge of your health.

What Is Diabetes Distress?

Nursing professor Kathryn Evans Kreider describes diabetes distress as “an emotional state where people experience feelings such as stress, guilt, or denial that arise from living with diabetes and the burden of self-management.” …


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Recalls of the diabetes drug metformin continue, with the Food and Drug Administration announcing two additional voluntary recalls of extended-release formulations last week.

Drugmakers Marksans Pharma and Sun Pharmaceutical Industries are both pulling select lots of metformin that may contain the impurity NDMA (N-nitrosodimethylamine). NDMA is a chemical with the potential to cause cancer when consumed in unsafe amounts over long periods of time.

This year, a total of 11 pharmaceutical companies and drug distributors have withdrawn specific extended-release lots of metformin, leaving countless patients searching for alternatives.

Metformin is widely used to control type 2 diabetes, in combination with diet and exercise. It is sold under various brand names, including Glucophage, Glucophage XR, Glumetza, Riomet and Fortamet. …


The rollback back of the Affordable Care Act protections hurts transgendered health

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Sarah*, a transgender woman in her mid-thirties, has found it difficult to navigate the health care system. She switched health care providers numerous times before finally finding a gender-affirming provider in Chicago, where she lives. (Sarah’s name has been changed to protect her identity.)

Sarah was shocked to learn that the Trump administration’s rollback of the Affordable Care Act protections could make it even harder to see a gender-affirming doctor. The rule, which is currently blocked in court, aims to reverse Obama-era regulations that said discrimination protections “on the basis of sex” should apply to transgender people.

The rule change could force Sarah and individuals like her to use their assigned sex at birth to see a health care provider. Doing so could worsen the discrimination and stigma facing transgender people in the health care system. According to the 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey, 33% of trans-Americans have experienced at least one negative experience with a health care provider and another 23% have avoided medical care due to fear of mistreatment as a transgender person. …


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Last week, California became the first state in the nation to ban 24 toxic chemicals from cosmetics. Signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom on Sept. 30, the groundbreaking law goes into effect in 2025.

“This landmark bill will ban cosmetics in California that contain 24 toxic chemicals known to cause cancer, reproductive harm and hormone disruption,” Assemblymember Al Muratsuchi, a Democrat from Torrance who sponsored the legislation, said in a press release. “The science is clear on the harmful nature of these chemicals and AB 2762 will provide Californians with the same consumer protections already provided in the European Union.”

According to the nonprofit Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, the “EU Cosmetics Directive” bans 1,328 chemicals known or suspected to cause cancer, genetic mutation, reproductive harm or birth defects from cosmetic products. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, on the other hand, has restricted or banned only 11 toxic chemicals from cosmetics. …


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The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday issued a final warning label and new guidance to inform patients of the potential risks associated with breast implants.

The breast implant guidance includes a boxed warning, also known as a black box warning, to call attention to the serious or life-threatening side effects linked to breast implants. The warning applies to saline or silicone gel implants used in “breast augmentation or breast reconstruction,” which accounts for most, if not all, breast implants.

The consumer warning was part of a 22-page breast implant guidance report that was heavily based on draft guidelines released last October. …

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