Medical Headlines

Archaeologists discover 3,000-year-old skeleton with metastatic cancer

Cancer is a leading cause of death worldwide. Factors involved in modern day living, such as smoking and exposure to certain chemicals, are thought to be major causes of the disease. Now, there is evidence that cancer was present in humans more than 3,000 years ago; archaeologists have discovered the world's first complete human skeleton with metastatic cancer that dates back to 1200 BC.

$1 billion a year is spent on brain scans for headache sufferers

Guidelines warn doctors against using brain scans for routine headache and migraine cases. Despite this, 12% of patients presenting with headache to a doctor are given scans, according to a study by researchers at the University of Michigan Medical School.

Alzheimer's onset could be triggered by sleep disturbances

Chronic sleep problems can inflame a number of health problems, from widespread pain to speeding up cancer. Though sleep disturbances have been observed in people with Alzheimer's disease, whether this is a cause or effect has been unknown. Now, researchers say individuals with chronic sleep disruptions could face earlier onset of Alzheimer's.

Experts question link between saturated fat and heart disease

A new review of published evidence challenges current guidelines that suggest in order to reduce heart disease risk, people should generally restrict intake of saturated fats - like those found in butter and dairy foods - in favor of unsaturated fats - such as in margarine and sunflower oil.

Vigorous exercise tied to reduced flu risk

A report on a UK survey suggests that vigorous exercise may help reduce the risk of catching the flu. The survey finds no such link with moderate exercise. However, the report authors stress the results are preliminary and should be treated with caution.The findings come from the UK Flusurvey, in which more than 4,800 people have so far taken part this year.

Potential for 'uncapped' newborn organ donations with UK guideline review

In the UK, organ donation from newborns is practically unheard of. New research from the Great Ormond Street Hospital in London suggests that this is primarily due to current death verification and certification standards. But the study authors say such guidelines need to be revised as there is "significant uncapped potential" for newborn organ donation in the UK.

TV, computer, video game use 'linked to poorer child well-being'

For most children, watching television, using computers and playing video games is a part of day-to-day life. But new research suggests that for young children, such activities are linked to poorer well-being.This is according to a study recently published in the journal JAMA Pediatrics.

Thirdhand smoke 'damages DNA and may cause cancer'

Evidence presented at the 247th National Meeting and Exposition of the American Chemical Society warns that thirdhand smoke damages DNA, attaching to it in a way that may result in cancer.

ADHD treatment linked to increased obesity risk

Past research has suggested that children with ADHD are at higher risk of obesity than those without the disorder. Now, new research from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, MD, suggests that this increased risk may be a result of ADHD treatment, rather that the disorder itself.

Colon cancer rates decreasing among older Americans

According to a new report from the American Cancer Society, rates of colorectal cancer - commonly called colon cancer - are decreasing steeply among older people in the US because of increasing use of colonoscopy screening, which can detect and remove precancerous growths.

New gene-scanning approach finds link to heart attack risk 'hiding in plain sight'

As scanning genomes for disease-related gene variations becomes more commonplace, scientists are pinpointing gene variations that change the way proteins function. Using this approach, a new study found a previously unknown gene variation that appears to make blood lipid levels healthier in humans and reduce risk of heart attacks.

Better sleep linked with higher omega-3 levels in new study

Omega-3 fatty acids are most commonly derived from fish oils, including tuna and salmon, and they have been linked to numerous health benefits. But now, a new study suggests that having higher levels of omega-3 DHA is associated with better sleep.The researchers, from the University of Oxford in the UK, have published results of their study in the Journal of Sleep Research.

Over 75% of people with the flu do not have symptoms

During flu season, sufferers may marvel at those individuals who just never seem to get sick. But a new study suggests they may actually be ill without knowing it, as three quarters of people with seasonal and pandemic flu do not exhibit symptoms.The researchers, led by Dr.

Parents 'increase infant's obesity risk through feeding and activity practices'

In 2012, more than one third of children and adolescents were overweight or obese. Now, new research suggests parents may need to shoulder some of the blame. A study found that many parents adopt infant feeding and activity practices that may increase a child's risk of obesity later in life.The research team, led by Dr. Eliana M.

Happiness is viral, thanks to social media

New research from the University of California in San Diego, and published in the journal PLOS One, suggests that happy status updates encourage happy updates from other users.Previous studies have shown that emotion spreads among people in direct, person-to-person contact. This "emotional contagion" has been documented among friends, acquaintances, and even among strangers.

Intelligent people 'more likely to trust others'

Do you often put your trust in others? If so, you are likely to be of high intelligence. New research from the University of Oxford in the UK suggests that intelligent individuals are more likely to trust other people, compared with those who are less brainy.

The 5-second rule is not an urban myth, say researchers

You are just about to eat the last chocolate that you have been saving all day, but as it reaches your mouth, you drop it on the floor. Do you throw it away? Or do you pick it up, give it a quick wipe and eat it? Many of us would refer to the "5-second rule" to justify eating it. Now, new research suggests this urban myth may actually hold scientific fact.