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Deutsche Welle is reporting that Germany’s largest physician association has formally called on the government to end financial support for homeopathic treatments and the “remedies” used by homeopaths.

From left: Dr Stephan Hofmeister, Andreas Gassen, Thomas Kriedel. Photo credit: Lopata / axentis.de

The head of the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians, Andreas Gassen, is not calling for a ban on homeopathic products or a stripping of homeopaths’ licenses. But he is pushing for insurers to stop refunding people who buy the medications.

Homeopathic remedies are made by diluting an “active” substance to such a degree that, in some bottles of the finished product, not even a single molecule of the original ingredient remains. Homeopaths explain this inconvenient fact by claiming that the production method, which involves violently shaking or slamming the mother tincture, infuses the remedy with the “energy” of the active ingredient.

Science, as you might expect, is skeptical–at best.

Gassen made the comments earlier today. When (or if) his exact statement appears on the Association’s website, we’ll add a link.

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APS BioGroup has announced a recall of 4 of its products:

  • Viralox
  • DPS Throat Spray
  • Immulox
  • Immuno PRP Spray
Photo of recalled Viralox courtesy FDA.

In its press release about the recall, APS BioGroup discloses that the recall was prompted by the discovery of the potential for Stenotrophomonas maltophilia contamination. Stenotrophomonas maltophilia, say health experts, can cause respiratory infections. It is a rare infection but one that can be tough to cure.

DPS Throat Spray photo supplied by FDA and APS BioGroup.

All of the recalled supplements are hawked for supporting immune health. They were sold nationwide through online sellers like Amazon, and to brick-and-mortar stores like Sprouts and Healthy Habit Health Foods.

Each comes in a 5-ounce plastic spray bottle marked with lot code 9068 and an expiry date code of 04/2021.

Photo of Immulox supplement courtesy FDA.

As of the date of the recall announcement, neither the company nor the Food and Drug Administration had received any reports of anyone being sickened by the products.

Of course, APS encourages you not to use any remaining products you might still have on hand.

Immuno PRP Spray

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Nearly two-and-a-half years ago little Deacon Morin died after, investigators say, the amber teething necklace his mother allowed him to wear caught on something, strangling the toddler as he napped at his daycare. Now, Deacon’s mother, Danielle, is suing craft website Etsy for selling the jewelry to a family friend.

Morin, who uses the name Dani Elaine on Facebook, confirmed news of the suit in a post yesterday.

Dani Morin’s Facebook post announcing her lawsuit against Etsy over her son’s apparent strangulation with an amber teething necklace.

Morin does not appear to be suing the friend who actually bought the necklace and gave it to Deacon but is suing the website, Etsy, and the company the distributes the items in the U.S.

Child safety advocates have long warned about the sham medical devices, which are widely available through websites like Amazon, Etsy and others. In December the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, or FDA, issued a formal Safety Communication begging parents and caregivers of infants or special needs individuals not to use them.

There is absolutely no scientific evidence that amber beads do anything to reduce fever or treat teething pain. And even “safe” necklaces aren’t considered safe.

A 2018 study of amber teething necklaces found that half of them failed to open when scientists applied 15 pounds of force. (It takes only 1.6 pounds to collapse a child’s airway.)

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On Monday STIFF BOY announced a recall covering all lot codes of its The Beast “male enhancement” supplement after U.S. Food and Drug Administration, or FDA, tests found sildenafil contamination along with the product’s herbs, minerals and vitamins.

Sildenafil, as you probably know, is a prescription-only medication given to men for the treatment of male erectile dysfunction.

Image of THE BEAST “male enhancement” supplement captured from STIFF BOY’s YouCanBeast.com website and used under Doctrine of Fair Use.

In its press release about the recall STIFF BOY acknowledges the contamination but offers no explanation for it. Nor does it say what, if anything, prompted the FDA to test The Beast in the first place.

As of Monday, neither STIFF BOY nor the FDA had logged any reports of anyone taking the product and becoming ill or suffering an injury.

The product was sold online nationwide. STIFF BOY says it is notifying its customers by email. Of course, anyone with any product still on hand should stop using it and take it back to their place of purchase.

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Nearly two-and-a-half years ago little Deacon Morin died after, investigators say, the amber teething necklace his mother allowed him to wear caught on something, strangling the toddler as he napped at his daycare. Now, Deacon’s mother, Danielle, is suing craft website Etsy for selling the jewelry to a family friend.

Morin, who uses the name Dani Elaine on Facebook, confirmed news of the suit in a post yesterday.

Dani Morin’s Facebook post announcing her lawsuit against Etsy over her son’s apparent strangulation with an amber teething necklace.

Morin does not appear to be suing the friend who actually bought the necklace and gave it to Deacon but is suing the website, Etsy, and the company the distributes the items in the U.S.

Child safety advocates have long warned about the sham medical devices, which are widely available through websites like Amazon, Etsy and others. In December the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, or FDA, issued a formal Safety Communication begging parents and caregivers of infants or special needs individuals not to use them.

There is absolutely no scientific evidence that amber beads do anything to reduce fever or treat teething pain. And even “safe” necklaces aren’t considered safe.

A 2018 study of amber teething necklaces found that half of them failed to open when scientists applied 15 pounds of force. (It takes only 1.6 pounds to collapse a child’s airway.)

###

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On Monday STIFF BOY announced a recall covering all lot codes of its The Beast “male enhancement” supplement after U.S. Food and Drug Administration, or FDA, tests found sildenafil contamination along with the product’s herbs, minerals and vitamins.

Sildenafil, as you probably know, is a prescription-only medication given to men for the treatment of male erectile dysfunction.

Image of THE BEAST “male enhancement” supplement captured from STIFF BOY’s YouCanBeast.com website and used under Doctrine of Fair Use.

In its press release about the recall STIFF BOY acknowledges the contamination but offers no explanation for it. Nor does it say what, if anything, prompted the FDA to test The Beast in the first place.

As of Monday, neither STIFF BOY nor the FDA had logged any reports of anyone taking the product and becoming ill or suffering an injury.

The product was sold online nationwide. STIFF BOY says it is notifying its customers by email. Of course, anyone with any product still on hand should stop using it and take it back to their place of purchase.

###

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Some of our most vulnerable are still dying because the adults in their lives either do not understand or fail to follow longstanding recommendations for safe sleep practices and safer sleeping environments.

What’s wrong with is picture? A lot, say safe sleep advocates. The soft, fluffy blanket and the large stuffed animal both pose a serious suffocation risk.

In a new study published this morning at the website for the journal Pediatrics, researchers explained that they gleaned data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Sudden Unexpected Infant Death Case Registry database. Looking at the years 2011 through 2014 they discovered more than 1800 babies died before their first birthday. At least 250 of those children died of suffocation in what safety advocates characterized as “unsafe sleep” situations.

The American Academy of Pediatrics has, for years, recommended that babies sleep alone, in a safe crib or bassinet, on their backs, and with no blankets, pillows, stuffed animals or other soft items.

But parents are not following those recommendations, researchers discovered. (While daycare deaths do happen, most sleep suffocation incidents actually occur in the infants’ own homes.) Soft bedding was blamed for the largest number of deaths but suffocation caused by an adult rolling over onto the baby was also common.

In all cases, non-supine sleeping and sleeping in an adult’s bed were frequent factors.

In the past two decades the number of sleep deaths in newborns has remained fairly steady. But better diagnostics means that more of those deaths are being classified as suffocations.

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Some of our most vulnerable are still dying because the adults in their lives either do not understand or fail to follow longstanding recommendations for safe sleep practices and safer sleeping environments.

What’s wrong with is picture? A lot, say safe sleep advocates. The soft, fluffy blanket and the large stuffed animal both pose a serious suffocation risk.

In a new study published this morning at the website for the journal Pediatrics, researchers explained that they gleaned data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Sudden Unexpected Infant Death Case Registry database. Looking at the years 2011 through 2014 they discovered more than 1800 babies died before their first birthday. At least 250 of those children died of suffocation in what safety advocates characterized as “unsafe sleep” situations.

The American Academy of Pediatrics has, for years, recommended that babies sleep alone, in a safe crib or bassinet, on their backs, and with no blankets, pillows, stuffed animals or other soft items.

But parents are not following those recommendations, researchers discovered. (While daycare deaths do happen, most sleep suffocation incidents actually occur in the infants’ own homes.) Soft bedding was blamed for the largest number of deaths but suffocation caused by an adult rolling over onto the baby was also common.

In all cases, non-supine sleeping and sleeping in an adult’s bed were frequent factors.

In the past two decades the number of sleep deaths in newborns has remained fairly steady. But better diagnostics means that more of those deaths are being classified as suffocations.

###

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This weekend you can get 3 absolutely FREE monographs, authored by Lisa, for your Kindle or Kindle reading app.

Written with the serious aromatherapy enthusiast in mind, Lisa Barger’s essential oil series goes well beyond the fluff that has damaged aromatherapy’s image and presents info on scientific studies instead.
Why You’ll Want These eBooks

Let’s be candid. Most aromatherapy books (and the vast majority of aromatherapy websites) simply regurgitate information from other essential oil texts. The botanical information is outdated, there are often no scientific references and some of the health claims are just silly.

So let’s rethink things. Lisa’s monographs were written for the serious enthusiast:

  • Updated botanical nomenclature
  • Folklore discussed as folklore–not fact
  • Scientific references

My monographs aren’t medical texts and I don’t give medical advice. But I do believe I can help you make a more informed and empowered choice when it comes to your health. Come see what I mean.

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Vivitar has announced a recall of its Hot/Cold Massage Balls products. In the press release, issued through the Consumer Product Safety Commission, or CPSC, the company reveals that as of April 04, 2019, it had received 84 reports of the balls leaking after being microwaved. In 17 of those incidents, burns were reportedly suffered.

Vivitar pulls its Hot/Cold Massage Balls product from Target after dozens rupture and 17 people report suffering burns.

The massage balls were made by Sakar International and sold only at Target. Costing around $5 for a set of 2, the balls were on store shelves as recently as February.

The balls were sold in 2-packs of one smooth ball and one textured ball. Available colors included:

  • Teal
  • Light pink
  • Lavender

If you think you might have these in your home, check your packaging for the name “Vivitar” and your balls’ model number, date code, and UPC. Vivitar says the date code is reprinted on the smooth ball of the set.

The following model numbers are covered:

  • F19-MB-TL
  • F19-MB-LP
  • F19-MB-LV

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