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Nutritional Concepts Mid-Week Brief
March 19, 2014
Dear Valued Subscriber.
 
Have a happy, healthy week. Bonnie and Steve Minsky

Meds, Supplements, Procedures, Recalls Alert.

fda

ADHD Meds

A journal Pediatrics study tracked the same group of 163,000 children ages 3 to 18 over a period of up to 13 years. For the children diagnosed with ADHD and put on medications, their body mass indexes (BMIs) remained slightly below that of their peers who either were not affected by ADHD or had the disorder but were not treated, or treated with nonpharmaceutical therapies. That wasn't a surprise, since years of studies have shown that stimulants, or amphetamines, can inhibit growth.

What stunned the scientists was what happened after the kids came off the drugs. About half of the children in the study remained on the medications for about six months or less, while the other half took the pills for about a year. On average, by age 13, those who had taken the medications started to put on weight, while those who hadn't did not. The BMI growth curve was curving dramatically upward. 
  
"Whatever the stuff does to you for that relatively short period of time - months to a year - it seems to alter your BMI trajectory for a long period of time after," said the lead author.

Anesthesia and Surgery
Older subjects had double the risk for dementia within 3 to 7 years of anesthesia and surgery compared with a control group who had no anesthesia and surgery within that time period. In addition, the average time to dementia diagnosis was shorter in patients who had anesthesia and surgery compared with those who did not.

The study, published in the British Journal of Psychiatry, adds to growing concerns that anesthetic agents may have neurodegenerative complications.

Antibiotics
Data from a large cohort of patients enrolled at US Veterans Affairs medical centers support recent conclusions that treatment with the antibiotic azithromycin (Zithromax/Zmax, Pfizer) significantly increases the risk of death and cardiac arrhythmia in the first five days of treatment. In addition, investigators showed the antibiotic levofloxacin (Levaquin, Janssen Pharmaceuticals) was associated with a significantly increased risk of death and cardiac arrhythmia when compared with patients treated with amoxicillin. The study appeared in the March 10th issue of the Annals of Family Medicine.
  
A new study in journal Pediatrics found that most cases of the severe - and potentially fatal - diarrhea illness in children caused by Clostridium difficile infection picked up outside of the hospital occur among those who have recently taken prescribed antibiotics.
  
Cosmetic Facial Fillers
Irreversible vision loss should be added to the list of potential complications associated with injection of cosmetic facial fillers. Three such cases of blindness or near-complete vision loss were reported in the March 6th issue of JAMA Ophthalmology. All three patients had central retinal artery occlusion shortly after receiving an injection. Each received different dermal fillers. The injections were in the forehead area, which is not an approved site for dermal fillers but is a common off-label use.  
  
Dietary Supplements
FDA has notified its field personnel that it may detain certain products containing "kratom" without physical inspection because the agency has determined that the new dietary ingredient poses such adverse health effects as aggression, hallucinations and vomiting. Kratom does not have a history of safe use. Kratom also is known as mitragyna speciosa, mitragynine extract, biak-biak, cratom, gratom, ithang, kakuam, katawn, kedemba, ketum, krathom, krton, mambog, madat, Maeng da leaf, nauclea, Nauclea speciosa, or thang. We do not dispense or recommend using any products containing this herb.
  
Oral Contraceptives
Women with multiple sclerosis (MS) or clinically isolated syndrome (CIS) were more likely to have used oral contraceptives in the three years before their diagnosis than women who did not have MS or CIS, according to a study presented at the American Academy of Neurology 66th Annual Meeting. Women who used any hormonal contraceptive in the three years before symptoms onset had a 35% increased risk of developing MS/CIS. Those who had stopped using hormonal contraceptives at least 1 month prior to symptom onset had a 50% increased risk.
  
OTC Acne Products
The FDA has placed over-the-counter acne products containing benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, or both on its latest quarterly list of products to monitor because of potential signals of hypersensitivity and anaphylactic reactions. Skin reactions and very serious allergic reactions are known adverse events associated with both agents. Steve: Those with salicylate sensitivity can react violently to the salicylic acid OTCs. Please read labels carefully.

 

Vitamin D Shows Promise for Lower Cholesterol

You may have seen this study because it did seem to penetrate the mainstream media.

 

According to a study in the March issue ofMenopause, researchers randomly assigned 576 postmenopausal women to either a daily dose of 400 units of vitamin D and 1,000 milligrams of calcium, or a placebo. They followed them for three years. By the end of the study, the vitamin D group had significantly higher serum levels of vitamin D, and a small but notable drop in LDL.


The researchers controlled for initial vitamin D level, smoking, alcohol consumption and more than 20 other variables. The randomized, double-blind design and the use of blood tests for vitamin D levels give the study considerable strength.

 

Bonnie: What most of the media did not pick up on was the women with the highest vitamin D levels also had higher HDL cholesterol (the good one) and lower triglycerides. The fact that it was only 400 IU of vtiamin D3 tells us that in higher doses, there could be an even greater impact.