Obsidian Mens Health Opens in Tysons Corner, Virginia

McLean, Virginia (PRWEB) February 04, 2014

Shane Geib, M.D., and Marc Richman, M.D. Northern Virginia urologists board-certified by the American Board of Urology, and with more than 30 years of combined experience are proud to announce the opening of Obsidian Mens Health. Obsidian is unique: a practice that focuses strictly on mens sexual health, in an environment designed with luxury, privacy and unfettered physician access in mind.

Obsidians areas of expertise include erectile dysfunction, premature ejaculation, low testosterone, vasectomy, prostate-cancer screening and sexual-health optimization. The practice is conveniently located in Tysons Corner, Virginia.

We wanted to start a new kind of practice, Dr. Richman says. Theres nowhere men can seek medical advice from physicians who focus strictly on mens sexual health. With Obsidian, weve created a place where men have easy access to experts in mens sexual health, are afforded the time and space to express their concerns and are treated in a private, resort-like setting. There are no heavy sales pitches or long waits for insurance approvals. We simply see our patients and offer them the care they need and the experience they deserve.

Men and their partners are entitled to happy, healthy and fulfilling sex lives, Dr. Geib says.Unless theres disease present, men often have a difficult time getting their primary care physician, or even their general urologist, to pay serious attention to sexual concerns. Weve created Obsidian to be a place where men and their partners can feel comfortable enough to discuss sexual-health issues with physicians who will listen to their concerns and take a comprehensive medical approach to solving their problems.

Privacy is paramount at Obsidian. Separate check-in and checkout areas (with a secondary exit for discretion) enhance clients privacy, and the facility can be closed under special circumstances for those who request unique protocols or have high-level security requirements.

Obsidian has also built a state-of-the art web site at http://www.obsidianmenshealth.com that allows users to request appointments online and is brimming with resources for patients and their partners.

About Obsidian Mens Health

Obsidian is a new kind of medical practice: one that focuses strictly on mens sexual health, in an environment designed with luxury, privacy and unfettered physician access in mind. Shane Geib, M.D., and Marc Richman, M.D., have more than 30 years of combined experience, and have travelled the globe helping men and their partners achieve and maintain a healthy sex life. Theyve created Obsidian Mens Health to provide men with a place to focus on attaining sexual and overall wellness in an uncompromised, relaxed, secure setting.

Expert Urges Bold Action Against Smoking, Says Nicotine Not the Reason Smokers Cant Quit

San Diego, CA (PRWEB) February 05, 2014

Smoking cessation expert Lou Ryan, founder of online health coaching firm SelfHelpWorks, is urging other health groups to follow the lead of a coalition of seven leading public health and medical organizations that recently called on the US government to take bold action against the dangers of smoking. According to Ryan, the main reason smokers struggle to quit is not physical nicotine addiction but rather a reversible thought process that creates an overwhelming urge to smoke.

I applaud the American Academy of Pediatrics, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, American Heart Association, American Lung Association, Americans for Nonsmokers Rights, Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids and Legacy

PatientPerspectives.org Addresses Hypertension and Its Role in Erectile

PatientPerspectives.org Addresses Hypertension and Its Role in Erectile
A permanent solution to erectile dysfunction (ED), a penile implant is a surgical implant allowing men the freedom to achieve and maintain erections to resume regular sexual intercourse. Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is a common cause of ED.
Read more on Digital Journal

Sexual dysfunction Brazilian spider toxin analogue potentiates erection via NO
A peptide analogue comprising the active component of the venom of the Brazilian wandering spider (Phoneutria nigriventer) potentiates erectile function in rodents, according to data recently published in the Journal of Urology. PnPP-19 is a synthetic, …
Read more on Nature.com

Loyola to Help Couples Dealing with Sexual Dysfunction After Cancer
Newswise — Cancer and cancer therapies are frequently associated with sexual dysfunction, yet this condition often goes untreated, according to specialists at Loyola Medicine's Sexual Wellness Clinic. Beginning on Wednesday, Sept. 2, Loyola will offer …
Read more on Newswise (press release)

Dennis R. Hill MD Radiation Oncologist Discusses the Current Prostate Cancer Screening Controversy

Oakland, CA (PRWEB) February 06, 2014

Herbert Lepor M.D. Chairman of the Department of Urology at New York Langone Medical Center was interviewed January 16, 2014 on CBS about the highly-debated prostate cancer screening with prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test. Before the PSA test, being diagnosed with prostate cancer was almost a death sentence, he said because the disease was advanced by the time it could be detected on digital rectal examination (when a doctor checks the prostate through the rectum using a gloved finger). After PSA testing became widely available, the disease was diagnosed earlier, and cure rates were much better.

It seemed as though it would be the answer to help us identify earlier cancers, Lepor explained. It would seem like a screening test that can catch the disease early would be a major advance in medical care. In fact, its one of the most controversial areas in medicine, said CBS News Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Jon Lapook. The problem is that the many of the tumors are low risk and not significant enough to warrant treatment. The biopsies, radiation and surgery can cause serious side effects, including infection, impotence, incontinence and other complications which would adversely affect the mans quality of life.

Thats why a panel that advises the U.S. government on medical treatment guidelines, the U.S. Preventative Services Task Force, recommended against healthy, symptom-free men of any age getting the PSA test in the May 2012 guidelines. However, many cancer experts believe that the PSA test should still play a role. Without using the blood test, the only method left to check for prostate cancers is a digital rectal exam and they are often discovered too late.

Lepor said that what doctors need is to screen smarter. He suggested still using the PSA test and if it is elevated repeating it to reconfirm. Then, Lepor said, doctors could use an advanced MRI scan to see if there is a suspicious area. The biopsy could be directed or targeted to the abnormal area rather that the common practice of random biopsies throughout the gland as done currently if the PSA is elevated. If the MRI scan is negative, Lepor said, a man might not need a biopsy unless their PSA scores keep increasing or they have significant family history.

Dr. Lepor’s proposal for smarter screening makes some sense. If the MRI scan is negative, the patient could avoid a biopsy and possible infection, says Dr. Hill.

If prostate cancer is proven on biopsy, treatment options are active surveillance or interventional treatment such as radical surgery, external beam radiation, permanent seed implant or High Dose Rate Brachytherapy. In low risk disease the cure rate excellent with any of the treatment methods. However, High Dose Rate Brachytherapy has a very low complication rate compared to the other modalities. There are essentially no rectal complications, no incontinence and a low percentage of erectile dysfunction.

About Dennis R. Hill MD

Dr. Hill is a board certified radiation oncologist doing High Dose Rate brachytherapy exclusively since 2004 and has published scholarly articles on the subject. His office is located at: Dennis R. Hill MD, 3012 Summit Street, Suite 2675, Oakland, CA 94609 510-869-8875. His email is drh(at)dennisrhillmd(dot)com and his website is hdrprostatebrachytherapy.com

Beverly Hills Shuts Down Rodeo Drive for Genlux Magazine Concert with Grammy Award Winning Musician Chris Botti

Beverly Hills, CA (PRWEB) September 12, 2014

In celebration of Chris Botti being the first man on the cover of the prestigious Genlux, the fashion + philanthropy magazine, Botti will be performing a private concert on Rodeo Drive for 1,000 VIP guests. The most famous street in the world will be closed off to through traffic on Sunday, September 14th to erect a stage, sound, lights and seating where Rolls-Royces, Lamborghinis, and Ferraris usually roll. With the support of Westime and Beverly Hills BMW, Genlux is offering the summers last hot ticket. Genlux publisher Cecilia Moreno said, “Genlux is proud to present the best-selling and Grammy-winning jazz artist Chris Botti. We’re also excited have him as the first man on our cover. We are grateful to the Rodeo Drive Committee and the City of Beverly Hills for teaming up with us on this momentous occasion.”

Chris Botti, who won the Grammy for Best Pop Instrumental Album in 2013, has had four albums reach no. 1 on the Billboard Jazz chart. He has performed and recorded with Sting, Yo-Yo Ma, Paul Simon, Barbra Streisand, Andrea Bocelli, Joni Mitchell, Vince Gill, Herbie Hancock, Mark Knopfler, Steven Tyler, Gladys Knight and John Mayer. The private event is by invitation only for Genlux VIP guests.

About Genlux:

For the past 10 years, GENLUX has been Southern California’s leading regional luxury magazine whose award-winning content is focused on fashion, beauty and philanthropy. GENLUX has earned an affinity with its influential and stylemaking readership by showcasing the latest fashion trends, beauty tips, and stories of the charities and those who support them.

About Westime:

For more than two decades, Westime has distinguished itself as the ultimate retail destination specializing in extraordinary watches and jewelry. Its four boutiques in Southern CaliforniaBeverly Hills, West Hollywood, La Jolla, and Malibudisplay the collections of more than 50 watch brands that represent the best of traditional watchmaking as well as the new guard in haute horlogerie. Westime is frequently cited as one of a dozen multi-brand retailers in the world that influence trends in the watch making industry. Westime is led by founder John Simonian and president Greg Simonian.

The BMW Group:

The BMW Group is one of the most successful manufacturers of automobiles and motorcycles in the world with its BMW, MINI, Husqvarna Motorcycles and Rolls-Royce brands. As a global company, the BMW Group operates 29 production and assembly facilities in 14 countries and has a global sales network in more than 140 countries.

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DOT Quality Services Expands Certification to AWS D1.5 to Answer DOT and Bridge Sector Needs

Chicago, IL (PRWEB) September 12, 2014

For many years, owners of major bridge projects and programs have been looking for a way to assure specific knowledge and focus of fabrication and erection firms ability to meet Bridge Code Requirements. The DOTQS program is a deep dive into the firms complete understanding of the requirements and the ability to qualify procedures, personnel and inspect to the workmanship required by this critical industry sector.

Suppliers can choose to demonstrate their ability to meet the requirements with a respected certification body in this sector.

The codes and standards that DOTQS will newly certify are D1.1/D1.1M:2010 Structural Welding Code-Steel and AASHTO/AWS D1.5Bridge Welding Code. They are standard requirements for thousands of contracts including diverse steel structures–much more than just buildings and bridges. This expansion builds on the current registrar services for ISO 9001, a common quality system standard in multiple industries and ISO 3834 for welding process control. DOTQS is the first American firm accredited to certify a firms welding process to ISO 3834.

DOT Quality Services is a certification body accredited by ANAB in accordance with ISO/IEC 17021 granting certification to ISO 9001 to firms meeting requirements and by the American National Standards Institute ANSI in accordance with ISO/IEC 17021 for ISO 3834 to firms meeting the requirements.

The staff at DOTQS has extensive experience throughout the quality field. Audits are conducted by experienced quality professionals who carry both technical and quality system certification credentials. Industries include steel, welding, pharmaceutical, telecommunications, and nonprofit.

Global Stem Cells, Inc., Bioheart, Inc., and Paul Perito Urology Announce Plans to Launch Stem Cell Clinical Trials for Treatment of Erectile Dysfunction (ED)

Miami, FL (PRWEB) February 11, 2014

Global Stem Cells Group, Bioheart, Inc., and Paul Perito Urology announce plans to launch stem cell clinical trials for treatment of Erectile Dysfunction (ED).

Paul Perito, M.D. of Perito Urology in Coral Gables, Florida and the principal investigator of the trial study, titled, “An Open-label, Non-randomized, Single-center Study to Assess the Safety and Effects of Autologous Adipose-derived Stromal Cells Delivered into the Corpus Cavernosum in Patients with Erectile Dysfunction,” aims to assess the safety and efficacy of stem cell implantation therapy in patients with ED.

The cell therapy in this study will be composed of stem cells derived from a patients own adipose (fat) tissue, harvested by syringe liposuction. The adipose stem cells will then be delivered into the corpus cavernosum of the penis.

Clinical trials will be held at Perito Urology, in cooperation with Global Stem Cells Group and Bioheart. Up to 20 patients will be enrolled.

Fort Myers Florida-based Emcyte Corporation, a leading provider of biotechnology products for platelet rich plasma and bone marrow concentrate grafting procedures, will be providing systems and kits to be used in the trial.

To learn more about Global Stem Cells Group’s clinical trials, and for investor information, visit the Global Stem Cell Group website, email bnovas(at)regenestem(dot)com, or call 305-224-1858.

About the Global Stem Cell Group:

Global Stem Cells Group, Inc. is the parent company of six wholly owned operating companies dedicated entirely to stem cell research, training, products and solutions. Founded in 2012, the company combines dedicated researchers, physician and patient educators and solution providers with the shared goal of meeting the growing worldwide need for leading edge stem cell treatments and solutions. With a singular focus on this exciting new area of medical research, Global Stem Cells Group and its subsidiaries are uniquely positioned to become global leaders in cellular medicine.

Global Stem Cells Groups corporate mission is to make the promise of stem cell medicine a reality for patients around the world. With each of GSCGs six operating companies focused on a separate research-based mission, the result is a global network of state-of-the-art stem cell treatments.

About Bioheart, Inc.:

Bioheart committed to maintaining its leading position within the cardiovascular sector of the cell technology industry delivering cell therapies and biologics that help address congestive heart failure, lower limb ischemia, chronic heart ischemia, acute myocardial infarctions and other issues.

Biohearts goals are to cause damaged tissue to be regenerated, when possible, and to improve a patient’s quality of life and reduce health care costs and hospitalizations.

Specific to biotechnology, Bioheart is focused on the discovery, development and, subject to regulatory approval, commercialization of autologous cell therapies for the treatment of chronic and acute heart damage and peripheral vascular disease. Its leading product, MyoCell, is a clinical muscle-derived cell therapy designed to populate regions of scar tissue within a patient’s heart with new living cells for the purpose of improving cardiac function in chronic heart failure patients. For more information on Bioheart, visit http://www.bioheartinc.com, or visit us on Facebook: Bioheart and Twitter @BioheartInc.

About Paul Perito, M.D.:

Paul Perito, M.D. is a top urological surgeon who excels in mens sexual health and the treatment of erectile dysfunction (ED). Perito Urology is among the worlds top penile implant facilities. Completing more than 500 successful penile implant surgeries each year, Perito Urology offers a spectrum of services that include the treatment of Peyronies Disease and all other forms of urologic care related to erectile function and mens health. The clinic is located near Miami, Florida in Coral Gables.

Perito is Chairman of Urology at Coral Gables Hospital and an active, Board Certified member of the American Urological Association. He is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons, member of the Sexual Medicine Society and a member of the Society of Prosthetic Surgeons. Perito has established a penile implant training program for surgeons wishing to learn his minimally invasive technique. For more information on Perito and Perito Urology, visit his website PeritoUrology.com.


Dennis R. Hill MD Radiation Oncologist Discusses Prostate Cancer Screening in the Elderly Debate

Oakland, CA (PRWEB) February 13, 2014

It is generally recommended that elderly patients not be screened for prostate cancer, but many elderly men are quite vital and younger than their chronological age. According to an article published in the Annals of Internal Medicine November 19, 2013* physicians may be better able to tailor cancer screening for them by using a new tool that estimates comorbidity-adjusted life expectancy.

The report from the National Cancer Institute analyzed Medicare data on 407,749 elderly persons, both male and female, to develop tables that can be used to estimate life expectancies for patients who have or do not have comorbid conditions.

The researchers found that persons with more comorbidities such as diabetes, chronic obstructive lung disease, or congestive heart failure had shorter life expectancies when compared with an average person the same age, whereas persons with no comorbid conditions had life expectancies beyond the average.

For example, the researchers estimate that a 75-year-old healthy person has a life expectancy of 6 years longer than a person of the same age with multiple conditions.

The study population included Medicare beneficiaries who were alive and at least 66 years old during the period 1992 and 2005. Beneficiaries who had previously had a cancer diagnosis were excluded from the study. The functional status and the severity of the comorbidity were not available from the Medicare data reviewed.

The authors conclude that Life expectancy varies considerably by comorbidity status in elderly persons. Comorbidity-adjusted life expectancy may help physicians tailor recommendations cancer screening for individual patients.

This research confirms what I have seen in my practice,” says Dr. Hill, There are men who are biologically much younger than their stated age.

If prostate cancer is proven on biopsy, treatment options are active surveillance or interventional treatment such as radical surgery, external beam radiation, permanent seed implant or High Dose Rate Brachytherapy in low risk disease the cure rate excellent with any of the treatment methods. However, High Dose Rate Brachytherapy has a very low complication rate compared to the other modalities. There are essentially no rectal complications, no incontinence and a low percentage of erectile dysfunction.

About Dennis R. Hill MD

Dr. Hill is a board certified radiation oncologist doing High Dose Rate Brachytherapy exclusively since 2004 and has published scholarly articles on the subject. His office is located at: Dennis R. Hill MD, 3012 Summit Street, Suite 2675, Oakland, CA 94609 510-869-8875. His email is drh(at)dennisrhillmd(dot)com and his website is hdrprostatebrachytherapy.com.


Global and China Construction Equipment Market : New Research Analysis and Forecasts 2017

Albany, New York (PRWEB) September 17, 2014

Selecting the most suitable type and size of construction equipments is often cited as having significant effects on the amount of time and vigor required in completing a piece of construction. It is thus very important for construction planners and site supervisors to have a good understanding of the major types of construction equipment that are commonly used in any general construction project. Construction at various sites is a completely different matter when supplementary tasks in a construction project such as excavation, loading, drilling, blasting, compacting, grading, mixing, paving, lifting erecting, etc. are considered.

Take for instance the example of rock excavation. The degree of difficulty of this task largely depends on factors such as rocks shape, grain size, weathering, planes of weakness, hardness and brittleness of the rock and so forth. These conditions would be naturally different for different places. So, it is extremely necessary to have correct knowledge of all the special equipment and methods involved in such tasks. When one says construction equipment, the images of giant cement mixers, tower cranes and bulldozers commonly make their presence felt at the back of our memory lanes.

Browse and Buy this report, here: http://www.transparencymarketresearch.com/construction-equipment-market.html

These are, however, only a few examples of the plentiful construction equipments known and used worldwide. One could hardly believe that even the difference of a few stories to a building project requires the use of entirely different crane or that two different sizes of drills are used for extremely different purposes. Theres a huge and demanding market for this industry globally and though ancient architectural giants were all possibly built without using any of these technically smart machines of this generation, the simplest piece of construction today is deemed incomplete without their availability.

We mention in the following listing some of the most common construction equipment one gets to see at any construction site. These machines, however, should not be considered as the only ones used. There are many more specific machines working for more specific jobs around you, only you fail to recognize.

Meanwhile, the most commonly used construction equipment:

Cranes: Cranes are commonly used for lifting loads, placing them at appropriate positions and securing material for big construction projects. Cranes are especially beneficial at places that are otherwise unfeasible for access. With the right kind of combined crane and anchor in action, a construction site is able to conduct many activities with utter safety and efficiency.

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Not to mention the different sizes and forms of cranes that add more efficiency for specific jobs.

A crane is characterized by several attachments such as chains, wire ropes, sheaves, wire rope swings, etc. These attachments should be rigged with utter care and precision to ensure maximum safety at the workplace.

Excavator: Excavators are made for use in multiple uses in a construction project. It is characterized by a cab mounted on a pivot and an articulated arm and a bucket. All excavators have buckets that can be customized to fit the specific need. The common places where one could observe the use of excavators include digging trenches, landscaping, demolishing structures, mining, lifting piles, dredging rivers, cutting and heavy lifting.

Hoists and lifts
As the name suggests, these are used for lifting loads and holding them in suspension while they can be moved to places. The most commonly used hoists include wipe rope hoist and chain hoists that consist of pulleys, slings, chains, winches and wipe ropes.

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While using these equipments, it is necessary to select the proper form of parts to ensure a proper balance and safe movement of load. The various sizes and forms of the pieces of these equipment are meant for specific purposes.

Forklifts are generally used for lifting and transporting heavy material. As such, they are also called fork trucks or tow motors. They are essential in handling and transporting heavy material safely and quickly to the desired locations.

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Beaumont First in U.S. to Treat Prostate Cancer with MRI-Guided Ultrasound Therapy

Royal Oak, MI (PRWEB) February 20, 2014

Urologists at Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak are first in the U.S. to treat localized prostate cancer with a transurethral ultrasound therapy guided by magnetic resonance imaging. The experimental treatment is designed to potentially reduce the long-term complications of traditional prostate cancer treatments.

The first treatment on Jan. 25 marked the launch of the Transurethral Ultrasound Ablation research study at Beaumont evaluating the safety and effectiveness of a new medical device developed by Profound Medical Inc. of Canada.

The new, single treatment, outpatient procedure uses MRI guidance to allow physicians to precisely target the delivery of thermal (heat) therapy to the prostate gland with an ultrasound device inserted in the urethra. Ultrasound is a procedure in which high-energy sound waves are aimed directly at an area of abnormal cells or tissue in the body. The waves create heat that kills cells. The direct targeting with MRI is designed to spare nearby nerves and organs, such as the bladder, rectum and colon, from damage, potentially reducing treatment side effects.

Traditional prostate cancer treatments – surgery and radiation therapy – provide good local control of the disease, but can leave men with significant long-term complications affecting urinary, bowel and sexual function, says James Relle, M.D., urologist and co-principal investigator of the Beaumont study. These issues can significantly reduce a patients quality of life.

A better understanding of the natural history of prostate cancer has led us to focus on less invasive or less radical treatments, says Jason Hafron, M.D., urologist, and co-principal investigator of the study. As more men are diagnosed with prostate cancer through earlier screening and detection, we are focusing on development of treatment options with fewer long-term complications affecting quality of life.

To be eligible for the study, patients must meet criteria, including:

Be a male, 65 years of age or older
Have low-risk, early-stage, organ-confined prostate cancer
Be eligible for magnetic resonance imaging
Able to tolerate general anesthesia
Have biopsy confirmed cancer of the prostate
Not have a bleeding disorder
Not have a latex allergy
Not have a history of any major rectal or pelvic surgery
Not currently treated with antidepressant drugs

Research participants will be followed for a minimum of 12 months, including monitoring of quality of life and for signs of cancer recurrence.

For more information on study enrollment, call Maureen Cooney at 248-551-9477.

According to the American Cancer Society, prostate cancer is the most prevalent cancer in American men. About one man in six will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during his lifetime, with the risk being highest after age 60. Prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in American men, behind only lung cancer. About 1 man in 36 will die of prostate cancer.

Prostate cancer forms in tissues of the prostate, a gland in the male reproductive system found below the bladder and in front of the rectum. The prostate surrounds the urethra, the tube through which urine flows. A healthy prostate is about the size of a walnut. If the prostate grows too large, it squeezes the urethra. This may slow or stop the normal flow of urine.

About Beaumont Urology

Beaumont urologists offer endoscopic, robotic and laparoscopic surgical options as well as traditional surgeries. They also specialize in treatment for kidney stones; painful bladder conditions such as overactive bladder and incontinence; sexual dysfunction; urologic cancer; prostate conditions; male infertility; voiding dysfunction; and erectile dysfunction. In 2010, Beaumont opened a Womens Urology Center, the first center in the Midwest dedicated and designed for womens urological care and sexual dysfunction. Beaumont, Royal Oak is ranked on U.S. News & World Reports Americas Best Hospitals list for urology. Find out more at http://www.beaumont.edu/urology.

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Back to School and the Newest Chemical to Watch: Phthalates

With children across the country returning to school this week, many parents are just completed the infamous back-to-school shopping trip, wherein backpacks, notebooks, pencils, markers, and locker decorations were purchased. This year, some scientists and politicians are warning about the dangers of phthalates.

Phthalates are also known as “plasticizers.” This is a group of industrial chemicals, used in everything from raincoats, shower curtains, toys, and children’s backpacks. According to the Environmental Working Group, phthalates can disrupt the endocrine system, decrease a man’s sperm count, and possibly even cause cancer.

This week, the Center for Health, Environment and Justice released the “Back-to-School Guide for PVC-Free School Supplies.” The report tells parents how to avoid PVCs, calling them “poisonous.” A number of media sources have picked up the story and are cautioning parents against purchasing products containing these chemicals. However, not everyone is necessarily ready to call phthalates a health hazard just yet.

An op-ed piece appearing on Forbes.com this week blasts the allegations made by some politicians and environmental groups, noting that many of the studies only involved animals or test groups so small that it would be irresponsible to draw sweeping conclusions from them:

Most recently, in NeuroToxicology, the Mt. Sinai Hospital researcher linked phthalates and another controversial plasticizer, bisphenol A, to a variety of health problems including neuro-developmental delays, behavioral issues and reduced fertility. Her evidence? She examined urine samples from 10 Mennonite women —yes, 10 of 1.5 million Mennonites worldwide. From a science perspective, any conclusions she might make from such a dismally small sample is literally ridiculous—but the media had a field day, nonetheless.

The truth is that there simply is not enough information out there at this point to make a definite determination regarding the safety of phthalates. These chemicals not not highly regulated, and science is still emerging about any potential long-term effects.


Surface Miners Inhaling Toxic Dust At Risk for Black Lung

Many surface coal miners previously believed that only their colleagues working underground were at risk for contracting black lung disease. A new study conducted by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) says otherwise.

Black lung disease is simply a common name used to describe any lung disease that can be contracted by inhaling coal dust. The name is derived from the appearance of a person’s lungs, which normally appear to be pink. There are two types of black lung disease, also known as coal workers’ pneumoconiosis: coal workers’ pneumoconiosis (CWP or the “simple” form); and progressive massive fibrosis (PMF or the “complicated” form).

Utilizing chest x-rays and breathing tests, researchers at NIOSH discovered severe cases of black lung disease in surface coal miners. While a prior study, completed in 2002, revealed less than a 2% incidence rate of black lung disease, this current study revealed that the rate is actually about five times higher.

Although it is still somewhat unclear as to what specific chemicals are the most harmful, researchers have speculated that silica dust, found primarily in the Appalachian region, is especially dangerous.

Because of these findings, researchers are now alleging that federal regulations governing coal miners may be insufficient to protect workers. Currently, miners who work on the surface are often exposed to clouds of dust around coal trucks, mines, and along mine roadways.

Inhaling coal dust also increases the risk of contracting emphysema, chronic bronchitis, or COPD. X-rays are able to detect many lung diseases early, so workers who are concerned should get tested so that early treatment options are available to them. If an x-ray does reveal a formal positive diagnosis of black lung disease, workers have a legal right to be transferred to a less dusty working environment without a reduction in pay.

If you have suffered a lung injury from working in a coal mine or by inhaling toxic substances, contact our firm for a complimentary consultation or fill out the form below.

For more information on the study and on black lung disease, please see the following sources:

North Carolina Governor Rejects Fracking Legislation

On Sunday, North Carolina Governor Bev Perdue vetoed a bill which would have allowed companies to drill for natural gas in North Carolina through the highly controversial fracking process. (For background information on fracking, please see our blog post from August 24, 2011.) Governor Purdue said in a public statement that she did not believe the legislation contained adequate environmental protection.

“I support energy policies that create jobs and lower costs for businesses and families,” Perdue said. “Our drinking water and the health and safety of North Carolina’s families are too important; we can’t put them in jeopardy by rushing to allow fracking without proper safeguards.”

While Governor Perdue’s veto was criticized by the leadership in both the State House and Senate, the move received praise from a number of state and national environmental groups, who have been cautioning against the risks associated with fracking for many months now.

While Republicans in North Carolina supported fracking for its potential to create many jobs within the state, Democrats and many environmental groups fear that the process will contaminate drinking water and is therefore not worth the risk. They argue that releasing toxic chemicals into potable water could create massive health risks for those consuming water from sources near fracking sites.

To read more about the bill in North Carolina, please see the article in the Charlotte Observer.

If you or a loved one has been injured by contaminated water or soil, please contact our firm for a complimentary consultation to learn more about your rights.

New Vaccination Designed to Help Smokers Quit and Prevent Non-Smokers from Starting

British scientists have developed a vaccination that is designed to remove all addictive properties of nicotine. Specifically, the pleasure your body associates with smoking would no longer be generated when you smoke a cigarette.

While human trials for the vaccine have yet to begin, tests on mice have proven to be successful. After a single dose, mice were found to be immune to nicotine addiction for their entire lifespan.

The vaccine contains a harmless virus, which is engineered to generate anti-nicotine antibodies upon administration. The virus works by selectively affecting cells in the liver.

Because the vaccine works by turning liver cells into antibody generators, it is expected to cost far less than prior vaccines, which required antibodies to be administered directly. Because older vaccines have required numerous administrations of these antibodies, they were believed to be less effective and more costly.

If human trials are successful, scientists believe that the vaccine could be administered to children, who have never tried a cigarette. This should prevent any recipients of the vaccine from ever deriving pleasure from smoking.

To read more about the vaccine, please visit Sky News.

Certain Toxic Chemicals Possibly Linked to Autism

The product of a conference hosted by the Children’s Environmental Health Center (CEHC) in 2010 has gained publicity in the past few days. Philip Landrigan, MD, MSc, Luca Lambertini, PhD, MPH, MSc, and Linda Birnbaum, Director of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, recently published an editorial called “A Research Strategy to Discover the Environmental Causes of Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disabilities.” The editorial focuses on certain toxic chemicals that the editors suggest are linked to autism.

Autism Awareness Ribbon

According to the National Academy of Sciences, 3 percent of neurobehavioral disorders in children are caused by exposure to toxins in the environment. The disorders in this category include ADHD and autism spectrum disorder (ASD). An additional 25 percent of these disorders are believed to be caused by a mix of exposure to environmental factors and genetics, though the exact causes are still unknown. Researchers at Mount Sinai have estimated that between 400,000 and 600,000 of the 4 million children born each year in the U.S. are affected by these issues.

For these reasons, Dr. Landrigan, as well as four other editorials, have called for additional studies to be conducted to determine which chemicals might be causing conditions like autism. The CEHC listed ten chemicals it believes to be linked to causing autism and learning disabilities. They are:

1. Lead

2. Methylmercury

3. PCBs

4. Organophosphate pesticides

5. Organochlorine pesticides

6. Endocrine disruptors

7. Automotive exhaust

8. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons

9. Brominated flame retardants

10. Perfluorinated compounds

If you or a family member have been injured by exposure to a toxic substance, contact our firm for a complementary consultation. We have over 25 years of experience and would be happy to explain your legal options, free of cost.

For more information on these chemicals and their potential link to autism, please click here.

The New Drug of Choice: Hand Sanitizer?

While you certainly can’t sue over the subject matter of this post, this new trend is so baffling that it nonetheless merits attention. According to a recent article in the L.A. Times, a new trend is emerging on college campuses throughout the country: drinking hand sanitizer.

In the past year, the California Poison Control System announced that it has received sixty reported cases of teenagers drinking hand sanitizer. In order to kill all of those germs on your hands, sanitizer contains 62% ethyl alcohol. Unfortunately, many teens have begun to utilize the substance to create a very potent alcoholic beverage, which sometimes includes salt to separate out the alcohol. Some students reported locating instructions for making this stiff cocktail on the Internet.

If you are concerned that your child might be interested in experimenting, there are ways to continue using hand sanitizer, while minimizing the availability of the product around your house. According to Cyrus Rangan of the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, “All it takes is just a few swallows and you have a drunk teenager.” Health experts have advised purchasing foam hand sanitizers instead of the liquid versions, as the foam is more difficult to transform into a legal beverage.

To read more about this, please see the following sources:

California Study Finds Toxins in Nail Polish

Reports in a variety of scientific journals demonstrate that nail salon employees suffer from more frequent headaches, respiratory issues, and skin irritation than most Americans. Furthermore, those working in nail salons are frequently exposed to dangerous chemicals at higher levels than most.

With this in mind, it is disturbing that the Department of Toxic Substances Control is releasing a report, showing that toxic chemicals were found in a number of nail products, claiming to be toxic-free. ”Toxic-free” refers to products not using the “toxic trio:” formaldahyde, toluene, and dibutyl phthalate. Exposure to these three chemicals has been linked to both cancer and birth defects.

According to Thu Quach of the Cancer Prevention Institute of California, nail products are not closely regulated, and the toxic effects of nail products can be compounded if a nail salon is not properly ventilated. Therefore, some cities have begun to pay attention and implement stricter regulations. While Boston has approached the issue by requiring salons to obtain health permits, the city of San Francisco has used an incentive approach by recognizing salons that use toxic-free products.

If you or a loved one have been injured by a toxic product, contact us for a complementary consultation.

For more information on toxic nail products, please see the article appearing in today’s Los Angeles Times.

Cancer Cluster in Fridley, MN? Erin Brockovich is on the Scene.

Shortly after wrapping up an investigation in upstate New York, Erin Brockovich has traveled to Fridley, Minnesota, where she and her team are now attempting to decipher what might be causing elevated cancer levels in the area. Current estimates place the incidence of cancer in Fridley at around ten percent higher than other areas in the state.

While heightened occurrences of all types of cancer are cause for concern, epidemiologists are working to trace which types of cancers are appearing more than others. John Soler, an epidemiologist for the Minnesota Cancer Surveillance System, indicated that initial findings revealed higher concentrations of lung cancer, especially in women. Despite this, Soler noted that final numbers have yet to be crunched.

In the meantime, Bob Bowcock, Brockovich’s associate, is reaching out to Fridley residents on the facebook page, “Fridley Cancer Cluster.” The page was started by residents and was one of the reasons Fridley caught Brockovitch’s attention.

The page has nearly 1,900 members and is full of stories from locals whose lives have been affected by cancer.

For more on this issue, please visit any of the following sites:

More Reasons to Quit Smoking

Just when you thought you had heard every possible reason under the sun to quit smoking, another one emerges. The latest incentive for kicking your habit comes from an article released today by Reuters. The article pronounces, not only is smoking bad for you, for your friends and family, for those around you, but it’s a “drag on the world economy.”

The Tobacco Atlas, funded by the American Cancer Society and World Lung Foundation, launched a book, which contains a number of statistics concerning the harm caused by tobacco. One of the most important figures indicates that smoking costs around 1 to 2 percent of the world’s gross domestic product every year. Included in these figures are costs such as healthcare expenses for treating tobacco-related illnesses and the costs of tobacco-related absences from work.

Today, there are around 7 billion people on the planet, and approximately one out of every seven smokes. Each year, approximately 600,000 non-smokers die as a result of second-hand smoke.

Sadly, these staggering statistics don’t seem so staggering after being in the news for so many years. The World Health Organization is taking action to curtail global tobacco use, and so are nations around the globe. As of today, 174 countries have signed and ratified the WHO’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.

While this is certainly a step in the right direction, the Convention lacks any penalties for a State’s failure to comply with Convention provisions. The United States has signed the treaty, but it has not been ratified. Therefore, the signature is nothing more than a symbolic gesture; treaties are not binding until they have been ratified.

While frightening statistics about tobacco use and related injuries have become the norm, and while one more article likely won’t cause anyone to to toss their last pack of Marlboros in the trash, it remains important to be reminded every once in a while that kicking the habit can not only save lives, but apparently, it can help our ailing economy.

Is Fluoride in Water Dangerous?

Recently, the New Jersey State Legislature introduced a bill, requiring all public water systems to add fluoride to local water supplies. This bill was proposed in light of the discovery that around two hundred New Jersey municipalities have stopped adding fluoride to water.


Fluoride prevents tooth decay and guards against the development of cavities. According to WebMD, the mineral allows teeth to resist being damaged by bacteria and sugars in the mouth, and it reversed early tooth decay. In fact, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention has hailed the addition of fluoride to local water supplies as one of the top ten public health achievements of the 20th century.

Objections to fluoridation of water have been raised over concerns that fluoride, in addition to preventing tooth decay, also can cause bone weakness if consumed in high doses over many years.

In 1986, the E.P.A. mandated that fluoride levels in water could not exceed 4.0 milligrams per liter. This regulation was accompanies by a suggestion that levels actually be limited to 2.0 milligrams per liter. Twenty years later, the National Research Council released a study it was asked by the E.P.A. to conduct. The study indicated that the 4.0 maximum level should be lowered, though it does not specify by how much. Today, the E.P.A. is still pondering how to proceed.

It seems that other federal agencies are beginning to take notice of the issue as well. In January 2011, the Department of Health and Human Services recommended that fluoride levels be capped at 0.7 milligrams per liter.

In light of these findings and recommendations, cities throughout the country have begun to explore the issue in greater detail. While many cities in New Jersey have elected to abandon fluoride in local water, others like Aspen, CO and Shippensburg, PA have elected to continue adding it.

If you or a loved one has been harmed by a toxic substance, click here to contact our firm for a complementary consultation. A member of our staff who specializes in toxic torts will be happy to speak with you.

To learn more about fluoride in water, please see any of the following sources:

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