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Sealant Inspired By Beach Worm Could Become Surgical Superglue

human heartCardiac surgeon and his colleagues have developed a biodegradable adhesive that can patch a hole in a pig's heart or artery. The experimental glue is nontoxic and is strong enough to hold up under the high pressures in the human heart, the team Wednesday in the journal Science Translational Medicine.

So far, they've tested the glue only in animals. So the sealant is far from reaching the operating room or battlefield. But del Nido hopes the adhesive will eventually replace traditional sutures and staples for some operations, especially heart surgery.

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22 States Curb Access To Abortion In 2013

Abortion curbsThe year 2013 marked the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion nationwide. It also marked another year of success for those who would restrict or even outlaw the procedure.

While much national attention was focused on efforts to restrict abortion in , a from the Guttmacher Institute reports that as many as 22 states enacted 70 provisions aimed at curbing access to abortion. That makes 2013 in the number of abortion restrictions enacted in a single year, according to the think tank for reproductive rights.

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The Most Dangerous Things to Do on Your Phone While Driving

phone dangersIf Werner Herzog hasn't already convinced you not to touch your phone while driving, perhaps this will. Dialing a cellphone is the most dangerous thing you can do in a car, according to a new study from the New England Journal of Medicine, and increases your risk of crashing or nearly crashing eight-fold.

Researchers collected 12-18 months of driving data from 42 newly licensed teenaged drivers from southwestern Virginia, as well as from 109 more experienced motorists from Washington, all driving cars that had been outfitted with cameras, accelerometers, and GPS devices.

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Justice Dept. opposes block on contraceptive mandate

us justice dept.The Obama administration on Friday called on Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor to lift her order temporarily blocking a part of the president's signature health care law that requires some religious-affiliated organizations to cover forms of contraception in their health care plans.

The Justice Department said in court papers filed Friday that the challenge to the contraceptive requirement, filed by the Catholic nuns of the Little Sisters of the Poor for the Aged, did not impose a "substantial burden" and the Denver-based nuns "fail to satisfy the demanding standard for the extraordinary and rarely granted relief they seek.''

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Traditional Chinese Medicine Plant Found to Relieve Chronic Pain

new pain compound

A plant used in traditional Chinese medicine has been found to have potent pain-reliving properties, researchers have found.

The flowering plant Corydalis, a member of the poppy family, has been used for centuries for pain relief in Chinese medicine.

However, researchers have now found it contains a compound called dehydrocorybulbine (DHCB), which has the potential to lead to new drug therapies for people experiencing chronic pain.

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A half million U.S. surgeries on knee cartilage may be unnecessary

knee surgeryFinnish researchers found repairing meniscal cartilage in the knee is no more effective than a placebo and about 500,000 U.S. surgeries may be unnecessary.

Adjunct Professor Teppo Jarvinen of the University of Helsinki and the Helsinki University Central Hospital and Raine Sihvonen of Hatanpaa Hospital in Tampere said the most common diagnosis of the knee that requires treatment is a tear in the meniscus -- the shock-absorbing cartilage of the knee. Most of the treated meniscal tears are degenerative -- caused by aging, not trauma.

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"Let the Crime Spree Begin": How Fraud Flourishes in Medicare's Drug Plan

Medicare prescription drug fraudToday, credit card companies routinely scan their records for fraud, flagging or blocking suspicious charges as they happen. Yet Medicare’s massive drug program has a process so convoluted and poorly managed that fraud flourishes, giving rise to elaborate schemes that quickly siphon away millions of dollars.

Frustrated investigators for law enforcement, insurers and pharmacy chains say they don’t see evidence that Medicare officials are doing much to stop it.

“It’s kind of a black hole,” said Alanna Lavelle, director of investigations for WellPoint Inc., which provides drug coverage to about 1.4 million people in the program, known as Part D.

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