HEALTH

DSE debuts new Anti Monkey Butt brand on Facebook

BY Michael Johnsen

EDISON, N.J. — DSE Healthcare Solutions on Sunday evening announced the launch of Safari Towels, a new product extending from its Anti Monkey Butt Powder brand, to its Facebook fan base of almost 39,000.

“Our new Safari Towels … so hot off the presses they aren’t even in stores yet!” the Anti Monkey Butt Powder status read. “Make a cool gift … from cyclists to soldiers, [they’re] great to have on hand for a ‘shower on the go.’ See them in our online store.”

The Safari Towels are premoistened, heavy-duty disposable towels that are large enough to clean an entire body surface without tearing. A Safari 6-pack (18 towels) are selling for $14.95 on the company’s website.

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CDC raises awareness around flu shots

BY Michael Johnsen

ATLANTA — In preparation for the National Influenza Vaccination Week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention hosted a press conference Friday afternoon to raise awareness around the universal need for people to be protected against influenza. “It’s a week that we typically highlight the importance of the flu vaccine,” Howard Koh, assistant secretary for health at the Department of Health and Human Services, told reporters. During a typical season, he said, most influenza incidents begin picking up in December. “Flu activity is now increasing across the country, and the flu season is well underway,” Koh said. “If you’ve been thinking about getting vaccinated for influenza, now is a very good time to do so.”

At this time last year, added Anne Schuchat, director of the  National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, the H1N1 flu was in full circulation, and the CDC was conducting weekly press conferences. “This fall has begun like so many influenza seasons, with relatively few flu viruses circulating through the end of November,” she said. “[But] we don’t want people to be complacent because disease activity has been low so far this year. Flu is coming.”

Right now there is a sharp increase across Georgia, Schuchat said, primarily in school age children. The prominent virus is an influenza B strain that matches up well to the B strain included in this year’s vaccine, Schuchat added. “Everything we know so far suggests to us that vaccine should be a good match for the circulating strain.”

According to a telephone survey of 38,000 adults recently conducted by the CDC, 33% of the population has already been vaccinated. Of those who haven’t been vaccinated, 15% plan on getting their flu shots, and 25% suggested they would “probably” get vaccinated.

That vaccine is being administered most commonly in the doctor’s office — 63% of patients reported that they received their shot there or in a hospital or clinic. Approximately 18% received their shots at their workplace or school, and 16% from a supermarket pharmacy or other retail setting.

To date, 64% of those over the age of 65 years have been vaccinated, Schuchat added.

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Intimacy health remains issue among seniors

BY Michael Johnsen

BOSTON — According to a report in the December 2010 issue of the Harvard Health Letter, Americans are maintaining intimacy through their 60s, 70s and even 80s.

The article summed up findings from two surveys investigating intimacy health in older Americans. Indiana University researchers reported earlier this year that 20% to 30% of long-lived Americans are active into their 80s. And a University of Chicago survey originally published in 2007 found that half of Americans continue to engage well into their 70s.

The Health Letter offers several possible explanations for sexuality extending later into life, notably that people are staying healthy longer. In fact, the University of Chicago study found a close association between good health and sexual activity among older people, particularly among men. Diabetes seems to have a greater negative effect than either arthritis or high blood pressure on both genders, but especially on women.

Half of those who participated in the University of Chicago study reported having at least one health-related problem. Among men, the problems included difficulty achieving and maintaining an erection (37%) and the lack of interest in sex (28%). Among women, the common problems were lack of interest in sex (43%) and difficulty with lubrication (39%).

In the Indiana survey, 30% of the women ages 50 years and older said they experienced some level of pain during their most recent sexual experience with a partner.

In the Indiana survey, 17% of men ages 50 years and older took an erectile dysfunction drug in connection with their most recent sexual experience with a partner. In the University of Chicago study, 14% of the men and 1% of the women reported taking medications or supplements to improve sexual function during the past year.

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