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Health News

First US Zika Virus-Related Death Reported in Puerto Rico


iStock/Thinkstock(SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico) -- The first U.S. death related to the Zika virus was reported Friday by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.A patient infected with the virus developed a severe blood-clotting disease called thrombocytopenia that lead to his death, according to the CDC. The disease is characterized by low platelet counts in the blood, which can lead to difficulty clotting.There have been at least 683 confirmed cases of the Zika virus in Puerto Rico, where

US Cases of Zika Virus Top 400


iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- The Zika virus continues to spread throughout the Western Hemisphere, including in wide swaths of Central and South America. Concerns are growing for pregnant women because the mosquito-borne virus has been shown to cause a serious birth defect called microcephaly, characterized by an abnormally small head and brain.Here are the latest updates about the outbreak, which the World Health Organization has deemed a "global health emergency."Puerto Rico Faces Growing Nu

Author's Proposed 'Meternity' Leave from Work Sparks Backlash


iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- An author’s suggestion that all women would benefit from “meternity” leave that would give them time to step away from their jobs has sparked controversy.Meghann Foye is the author of Meternity, a new novel in which an overworked editor fakes her own pregnancy in order to get paid time off -- a “meternity” leave.In her own life, Foye, 38, also worked as a magazine editor and has said she felt jealous of parents who left the office to p

Breast Cancer Survivor Will Walk 1,000 Miles to Congress


Paulette McKenzie Leaphart(WASHINGTON) -- Paulette Leaphart, 49, is going to Washington, D.C. And she will make the entire 1,000-mile journey on foot.Nothing will stand in her way - not even the shirt on her back. Literally.She will walk from Biloxi, Mississippi, tomorrow completely topless, showing the evidence of her double mastectomy. Leaphart wants to talk to lawmakers about the uphill battle everyday Americans with cancer, like herself, face in trying to afford the sky-high cost of life-sav

Legally Blind Fifth Grader Sees Mother for First Time


iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- Fifth grader Christopher Ward, Jr., has been legally blind all his life, but he recently got to see his mother for the first time through new electronic glasses.The 12-year-old from Forest, Virginia, traveled up to Washington, D.C., a few weeks ago to demo a new wearable technology called eSight, according to his mother, Marquita Hackley.eSight's hands-free headset contains a small, high-speed camera that captures live video, which is sent to a LED screen in fron

Your Body: The Link Between Your Birth Month and Allergies


iStock/ThinkstockBy DR. JENNIFER ASHTON, ABC News Senior Medical ContributorCould the season in which your child is born determine whether he or she will suffer from allergies later in life?A new study published in the journal Allergies suggests that babies who are born in the fall have an increased risk of developing eczema, and those born in the fall and winter are more prone to asthma.The researchers found that the allergies did not just occur in childhood. They followed babies until they gre

This Miami Plastic Surgeon Uses Snapchat to Record His Surgeries Live in the Ope


iStock/Thinkstock(MIAMI) -- Miami plastic surgeon Dr. Michael Salzhauer has managed to amass one of the largest followings on Snapchat, one 10-second video at a time.Salzhauer, better known as "Dr. Miami," uses Snapchat during his patients' surgeries to document the procedures. As a result, he has millions of Snapchat fans and hundreds of new patients."Snapchat and social media has allowed us to show our work to an audience that we would never be able to reach if I had run a local commercial, yo

Beating Heart Cells Created From Human Skin Cells in New Study


Wavebreak Media/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Scientists have found a new way to transform human skin cells into heart-like cells in mice by using chemicals instead of genetic modification, in what some experts are calling a major breakthrough.Researchers used a chemical cocktail that affected the DNA replication and prompted the cells to convert into a heart-like cell, according to a new study published in the journal Science that shows promise in the field of tissue regeneration.When researchers tra

First Commercial Zika Virus Test Gets FDA Approval


iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) --  The Food and Drug Administration approved the first commercial U.S. test Thursday to diagnose the Zika virus.The news comes as states and the federal government struggle to get ahead of the epidemic as it makes its way to the U.S. from South America.Quest Diagnostics says it has received emergency authorization from the FDA to sell the first commercially developed diagnostic test for the mosquito-borne virus. Until now, patients who wanted the test had to go

Teen Pregnancy Rates Hit Historic Lows, CDC Finds


iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Teen pregnancy rates continue to drop throughout the U.S., and have reached a new historic low, according to a new report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).There were 24.2 live births per 1,000 teens between the ages of 15 to 19 in 2014, according to the report in the CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. This represents a 61 percent decrease from 1991."The United States has made remarkable progress in reducing both teen pregnanc

Grown Preemie Triplets Donate PJ's to NICU Where They Once Stayed


Ty Swarts(SHAWNEE, Kan.) -- A set of triplets who were born premature paid it forward last week after donating pajamas to the babies of the NICU in the hospital where they were born 10 years ago."I couldn't be more proud," dad Ty Swarts of Shawnee, Kansas, told ABC News. "I'm really happy to see [them] giving back -- especially to young kids. It's just a really big learning lesson...."In lieu of birthday gifts, Luke, Taya and Brady Swarts, former Overland Park Regional Medical Center NICU grads

Study: Spike in Cost of Certain Oral Cancer Drugs Squeezes Patients


Hemera/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- As rising drug costs have become a topic of intense debate, a new review finds a significant increase for some cancer drugs.The cost of certain oral medications for cancer treatment have increased multiple-fold since 2000, according to a study published Thursday in the Journal of the American Medical Association.The average cost for certain orally administered treatments have increased dramatically, even after prices were adjusted for inflation, according to a rese

Teen's 'Promposes' to Friend With Down Syndrome at Coffee Shop


iStock/Thinkstock(WILMINGTON, N.C.) -- A teen's touching "promposal" to her friend with Down syndrome is going viral on Facebook after it was captured on video.Lillie Wright, 17, surprised her friend and co-worker Trevor Jefferson, 21, at Beau's Coffee in Wilmington, North Carolina, on April 25 by asking him to prom with a cute coffee-themed poem written on a sign."I like coffee, I like tea. Would you go to prom with me?" Lillie's sign reads.In the video, Trevor reads the poem aloud and responds

Teen Leukemia Survivor to Announce Denver Broncos NFL Draft Pick


Phil Ellsworth / ESPN Images(DENVER) -- A 16-year-old Denver Broncos fan who survived a bone marrow transplant to treat a rare form of cancer will get a one-of-a-kind opportunity Thursday night at the 2016 NFL Draft.Daniel Hailpern, of Denver, Colorado, will stand next to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell in Chicago to announce the pick for the reigning Super Bowl champion Broncos thanks to the Make-A-Wish Foundation.“I’m not nervous at all,” Hailpern, a high school sophomore, tol

Opioid-Antidote Drug Will Now Be Available to US High Schools for Free


WABC-TV(NEW YORK) -- As the opioid epidemic continues to grow nationally, the company that makes a medication to block the effects of an opioid overdose said it will give a free carton of the antidote to any U.S. high school.Adapt Pharma, maker of the Narcan nasal spray, announced the move on Thursday.The medication consists of a drug called naloxone, which comes as a nasal spray or injection. It can quickly reverse the dangerous effects of an opioid overdose by binding to important receptors in

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