HEALTH

Citi analyst: Flu activity up year over year in early December

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK — Predictions of a more active flu season are coming true as temperature differences have helped drive flu activity, a Citibank financial analyst wrote.

In a letter to investors, Citi Research analyst Deborah Weinswig wrote that influenza virus activity in the week ended Dec. 8 increased year over year for the ninth consecutive time this season and increased significantly compared with last week — up 28.3% compared with last week’s 20.7%.

Meanwhile, natural temperatures during the week were significantly warmer compared with the same period last year, but cooler year-over-year temperatures in the prior four weeks helped drive increased flu activity.

Overall, the Midwest, Southeast and Central parts of the country experienced the highest flu activity during the week. The U.S. Outpatient Influenza-like Illness Surveillance Network reported that 2.8% of patient visits during the week were due to influenza-like illness, above the national baseline of 2.2% and the highest percentage this season. Activity was up by 0.9% from last week and above the 1.2% reported during the same period last year.

The report noted that while Walgreens reported a 10-bps negative impact due to lower cough, cold and flu incidence, Weinswig said the chain lost flu shot share in a competitive environment, while CVS reported that front-end same-store sales experienced a positive effect from flu-related sales.


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Nutra Pharma to introduce ‘military-strength’ painkiller

BY Alaric DeArment

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. — Nutra Pharma will introduce a stronger version of its OTC pain reliever, the company said Wednesday.

Nutra Pharma — which is developing treatments for such diseases as HIV, multiple sclerosis and adrenomyeloneuropathy — announced the planned introduction of Nyloxin Military Strength in order to combat opiate abuse and overuse of NSAIDs by military personnel.

"Our hope is that with Nyloxin, we can greatly reduce the instances of opiate abuse and overuse of NSAIDs in high-risk groups like the U.S. military," Nutra Pharma chairman and CEO Rik Deitsch said. "Our goal for Nyloxin over the next several years is to be the No. 1 choice that people turn to for chronic pain relief."

The company said that over the past few years, the Department of Defence has reported an increase in the use and abuse of prescription drugs, particularly opiates, and there were nearly 3.8 million prescriptions for pain relievers written in the military, a 400% increase from the number written in 2001. Meanwhile, the terms "Ranger Candy" and "Military Candy" refer to service members said to use 800-mg doses of ibuprofen to control pain, which can put them at risk for organ damage.

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W.Veiock says:
Dec-24-2012 02:24 pm

Should a patient trust a product when the website of its manufacturer doesn't state the active ingredient?

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ScarAway sheets to reduce C-section scars available at Buybuy Baby stores

BY Alaric DeArment

GUILFORD, Conn. — A sheet designed to fade and flatten C-section scars is available at Buybuy Baby stores, the manufacturer said.

ScarAway Silicone C-Section scar sheets used to be available only through hospitals but are now available at Buybuy Baby stores nationwide and online, manufacturer Mitchell-Vance Labs said.

"Much has been written about what to expect when you’re expecting, but it’s hard to prepare for all the changes to your body — let alone your life — after the baby arrives," Mitchel-Vance president Jessica Rowen said. "Women who have delivered via C-section leave the hospital with a 4-in. to 6-in. scar that can far outlast those postpartum sleepless nights. That’s why we’re excited to partner with Buybuy Baby to make a specialize, over-the-counter treatment available where moms are already shopping for newborn necessities."

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