Here are some of the latest health and medical news
developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:
FDA Testing Pet Food for Salmonella
A nationwide program to test pet food and related products for
salmonella has been launched by the U.S. Food and Drug
Administration because there is evidence that tainted pet food is
making owners sick.
In October, agency investigators began taking samples of pet
treats, dry pet food and pet diet supplements from retailers,
wholesalers and distributors, the
Wall Street Journal reported.
The testing includes products for dogs, cats, rabbits, reptiles,
aquarium fish, birds and rodents such as mice, guinea pigs and
In a memorandum released this week, the FDA said it is
"particularly concerned about salmonella being transmitted to
humans through pet foods, pet treats, and supplements for pets that
are intended to be fed to animals in homes, where they are likely
to be directly handled or ingested by humans," the
Wall Street Journal reported.
To highlight the need for testing, the FDA cited Centers for
Disease Prevention and Control data showing that 70 people became
ill from January 2006 to December 2007 in connection with
salmonella-tainted dry dog food made in Pennsylvania.
Melanoma-Detecting Device Approved by FDA
A device designed to help doctors decide if a mole should be
removed and tested for melanoma was approved Wednesday by the U.S.
Food and Drug Administration.
The MelaFind takes detailed images of suspicious-looking skin
growths and analyzes them for signs of melanoma, the deadliest type
of skin cancer, the
Associated Press reported.
The device, made by Mela Sciences Inc. of Irvington, N.Y.,
compares images from patients to a database of 10,000 images and
then recommends whether a biopsy should be done.
Finding melanoma at an early stage can save lives. While 85
percent of patients diagnosed with late-stage melanoma die within
five years, nearly all patients diagnosed with early-stage melanoma
can be treated and cured, the
Obama in Excellent Health
President Barack Obama is physically active, eats a healthy
diet, maintains a healthy weight, occasionally consumes alcohol in
moderation, has quit smoking and is fit for his age, according to a
new medical report.
"The President is in excellent health and 'fit for duty,'" Dr. Jeffrey C. Kuhlman, the physician who supervised the physical performed last week at the White House, wrote in the two-page report, USA Today said. "All clinical data indicate he will remain so
for the duration of his presidency."
"The President is current on all age-appropriate screening tests," Kuhlman noted. "He is 'fit at 50' and 'staying healthy at 50+.'"
Obama's next physical should be held in December 2012, Kuhlman
recommended. That's a month after the presidential election,
USA Today said.
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