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Health & Wellness

Blankets, bed-sharing common in accidental baby suffocations

CHICAGO — Accidental suffocation is a leading cause of injury deaths in U.S. infants and common scenarios involve blankets, bed-sharing with parents and other unsafe sleep practices, an analysis of government data found.

These deaths “are entirely preventable. That’s the most important point,” said Dr. Fern Hauck, a co-author and University of Virginia expert in infant deaths.

Study finds peanut allergy treatment safe for allergists to use with young kids

VANCOUVER — A new study suggests preschoolers who are allergic to peanuts can be treated safely by eating small amounts of peanut protein with guidance from a medical specialist.

The findings offer assurances to allergists in clinics and hospitals that oral immunotherapy does not have to be confined to research settings.

Telemedicine, walk-in clinics cloud role of family doctor

Lisa Love hasn’t seen her doctor of 25 years since she discovered telemedicine.

Love tried virtual visits last summer for help with a skin irritation and returned for another minor problem. She doesn’t feel a pressing need to seek care the old-fashioned way, especially since she also gets free health screenings at work.

How safe is running a marathon? Heart doctors say it depends

BOSTON — It was the death heard ‘round the running world.

In July 1984, acclaimed author and running guru Jim Fixx died of a heart attack while trotting along a country road in Vermont. Overnight, a nascent global movement of asphalt athletes got a gut check: Just because you run marathons doesn’t mean you’re safe from heart problems.

Brain scans may reveal concussion damage in living athletes

Researchers may be closing in on a way to check athletes while they’re alive for signs of a degenerative brain disease that’s been linked to frequent head blows. Experimental scans found higher levels of an abnormal protein tied to the disease in a study of former National Football League players who were having mood and thinking problems.

Health Canada says it will set cap on arsenic in food, looks to Europe for standard

Health Canada says it will launch a months-long consultation process this year on setting a maximum level of arsenic allowed in rice and rice-based food, including baby cereal.

Currently, there is no hard limit on arsenic in rice-based food in Canada and the U.S., despite existing regulations in Europe.

US health officials alarmed by paralyzing illness in kids

NEW YORK — One morning last fall, 4-year-old Joey Wilcox woke up with the left side of his face drooping.

It was the first sign of an unfolding nightmare.

Three days later, Joey was in a hospital intensive care unit, unable to move his arms or legs or sit up. Spinal taps and other tests failed to find a cause. Doctors worried he was about to lose the ability to breathe.