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Saturday, Oct 25th

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DNA Test Outperforms Pap Smear

A new DNA test for the virus that causes cervical cancer does so much better than current methods that some gynecologists hope it will eventually replace the Pap smear in wealthy countries and cruder tests in poor ones.

Not only could the new test for human papillomavirus, or HPV, save lives; scientists say that women over 30 could drop annual Pap smears and instead have the DNA test just once every 3, 5 or even 10 years, depending on which expert is asked.

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Bone-repairing stem cell jab hope

Doctors may soon be able to patch up damaged bones and joints anywhere in the body with a simple shot in the arm.

A team at Keele University is testing injectible stem cells that they say they can control with a magnet.

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14 Drug Makers Told to Stop Using Some Internet Ads

The Food and Drug Administration ordered 14 drug makers to stop using what it called misleading ads on Internet search engines. The agency faulted the companies for failing to identify product names and side effects in sponsored search results, according to its Web site.

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CDC: Rocket fuel chemical found in baby formula

Traces of a chemical used in rocket fuel were found in samples of powdered baby formula, and could exceed what's considered a safe dose for adults if mixed with water also contaminated with the ingredient, a government study has found.

The study by scientists at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention looked for the chemical, perchlorate, in different brands of powdered baby formula. It was published last month, but the Environmental Working Group issued a press release Thursday drawing attention to it.

The chemical has turned up in several cities' drinking water supplies. It can occur naturally, but most perchlorate contamination has been tied to defense and aerospace sites.

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Beta-Blocker Drugs Cause 400 Percent Increase in Heart Attacks

Surgical patients who are given blood pressure drugs known as beta-blockers around the time of surgery are four times more likely to suffer heart attacks and death than patients who are not given such drugs, according to a study conducted by researchers from the Veterans Affairs (VA) Boston Health Care System and published in the journal Archives of Surgery.

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UN: Killer strains of tuberculosis may 'spiral out of control'

The world is on the cusp of an explosion of drug-resistant tuberculosis cases that could deluge hospitals and leave physicians fighting a nearly untreatable malady with little help from modern drugs, global experts said Wednesday.

"The situation is already alarming, and poised to grow much worse very quickly," said Dr. Margaret Chan, director-general of the World Health Organization.

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Benefits of Mammogram Under Debate in Britain

The idea that mammography may do more harm than good may be alien to many American women. The prevention message has emphasized that screening protects women from breast cancer, and one survey of 479 women found that only 7 percent were aware that some cancers grow so slowly that even without treatment they will not affect a woman’s health.

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