Review Category : Health

Woman ‘Very Nervous’ Since Being Grazed by Lightning in Living Room

ABC News(WHEATFIELD, N.Y.) — A New York woman says she hasn’t been herself since she survived being grazed by lightning while sitting on a couch in her living room.

“I’m feeling the same, but…like very nervous,” Theresa Szelest told ABC News’ 20/20. “That’s not my personality. [I'm] even to the point of almost having panic attacks.”

While at her home in Wheatfield, New York, last week, Szelest said her mom was rubbing her feet for her when it began raining outside.

“And it was thundering, lightning. And one struck in the backyard, and I went, ‘Oh my god, Mom, that is so close,’” Szelest recalled. “I don’t remember feeling anything. I don’t remember seeing it. But it’s the sound that I remember. All I remember is the sound.”

That’s when Szelest said her mom felt a jolt through Szelest’s foot.

“I smelled her hair to make sure she wasn’t burning,” Lottie Waldron, Szelest’s mom, told 20/20. “And then it was too quick. We all jumped up, and the next thing I knew I was outside.”

Szelest, 52, said she was unharmed, except for being in such shock that she was having trouble breathing.

“It was funny because I guess I was hyperventilating, so my toes were starting to turn purple,” she said.

A neighbor, who is a volunteer fireman, came across the street and had them leave the house in case it was on fire. Fortunately, there was no fire in the house, just small pieces of plaster that fell on Szelest and in the area where the bolt of lightning entered the home.

Szelest’s home has no visible outside damage, but she worries it may be susceptible to another lightning strike. “Just because of the direction and the way the house sits, it’s one of the highest peaks in the neighborhood. Is it going to happen again? I hope not,” said Szelest.

The overwhelming number of lightning strikes occur outside, but can also strike inside, said the National Weather Service’s lightning expert John Jensenius.

“Lightning can go through the plumbing. It could easily go through water and get to you,” Jenenius told ABC News. “If it strikes outside, it can travel through the metal doorknob.”

Because she has trouble remembering what happened, Szelest feels like a part of her is gone.

“I just want everybody else to be aware that it can happen and to be careful,” said Szelest. “Just be aware of your surroundings.”

Watch the full story on ABC News’ 20/20 on Friday, Aug. 8 at 10 p.m. ET.

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The One Question that Reveals If One Is a Narcissist

iStock/Thinkstock(COLUMBUS, Ohio) — The greatest love of all, Whitney Houston once sang, is the love one has for his or herself. However, even that love can get out of hand, given how some people are enamored with themselves at the exclusion of just about everyone else.

Psychologists call these people narcissists, and given the popularity of selfies on social media, it seems like an epidemic.

According to Brad Bushman, an Ohio State University researcher, there’s typically a 40-question survey that is used to determine whether one exhibits narcissistic traits.

However, Bushman contends that if you want to get to the meat of the matter quickly, all it takes is one question to determine if a person is truly self-centered and that is, “To what extent do you agree with the statement, ‘I am a narcissist’?

On a scale of one to seven, with seven being “very true,” Bushman determined that those likely to considers themselves narcissists were generally young and males.

The study did not analyze whether someone suffers from diagnosed narcissistic personality disorder, which can interfere with day-to-day living.

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Doctors Orders Often Don’t Include Taking an Aspirin

Purestock/Thinkstock(ROCHESTER, N.Y.) — For years, millions of middle-aged Americans have taken a low-dose aspirin each day to help prevent heart attack and stroke. The question is: who told them to do so?

Now, a University of Rochester study reveals the truth and it’s pretty shocking. Most older patients who pop an aspirin a day didn’t get that advice from their physician.

The UR researchers looked at the records of nearly 3,440 people who qualified for aspirin therapy even though they didn’t exhibit any signs of heart disease. They did, however, have other health risks such as diabetes, hypertension and obesity.

When asked if their doctor had told them to take a low-dose aspirin daily to prevent heart attacks, stroke or cancer, only 34 percent of the men and 42 percent of the women answered in the affirmative.

So why are doctors gun-shy about recommending aspirin to middle-aged patients who could probably benefit from it? Lead author Kevin Fiscella cites several reasons, including failure to assess whether a patient is eligible for an aspirin regimen and perhaps concerns that its disadvantages such as internal bleeding might outweigh the benefits.

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Americans Spending Billions on Billions of Drug Prescriptions

iStock/Thinkstock(DANBURY, Conn.) — Do the names Synthroid and Abilify ring a bell? According to the research firm IMS health, they happen to be the nation’s top-prescribed drug and top-selling prescription drug, respectively.

Synthroid, which is used to treat an underactive thyroid, averages 22.6 million prescriptions per month. Abilify, which is used to treat schizophrenia, Bipolar Disorder I, and depression, had $7.2 billion in sales in the past year.

IMS Health notes nothing much has changed with the top 10 lists of drugs in each category among the top 100 prescribed drugs in the U.S. from June 2013 to June 2014.

Here are the top 10 drugs, per monthly prescriptions, and what they’re used to treat:

  1. Synthroid, 22.6 million (Treats underactive thyroid)
  2. Crestor, 22.5 million (Treats high cholesterol)
  3. Nexium, 18.6 million (Treats heartburn)
  4. Ventolin HFA, 17.5 million (Treats asthma, chronic bronchitis)
  5. Advair Diskus, 15.0 million (Treats asthma)
  6. Diovan, 11.4 million (Treats hypertension)
  7. Lantus Solostar, 10.1 million (Treats diabetes)
  8. Cymbalta, 10.0 million (Treats major depressive disorder, general anxiety and fibromyalgia)
  9. Vyvanse, 10.0 million (Treats ADHD)
  10. Lyrica, 9.6 million (Treats epilepsy, shingles)

Here are the top 10 by sales for the year and what they’re used to treat:

  1. Abilify, $7.2 billion (Treats schizophrenia, Bipolar Disorder I, and depression)
  2. Humira, $6.3 billion (Treats arthritis)
  3. Nexium, $6.3 billion (Treats heartburn)
  4. Crestor, $5.6 billion (Treats high cholesterol)
  5. Enbrel, $5.0 billion (Treats rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis)
  6. Advair Diskus, $5.0 billion (Treats asthma)
  7. Sovaldi, $4.4 billion (Treats hepatitis C)
  8. Remicade, $4.3 billion (Treats rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis)
  9. Lantus Solostar, $3.8 billion (Treats diabetes)
  10. Neulasta, $3.6 billion (Treats low white blood cell count)

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Acid in Popular Beverages Can Wreck Youngsters’ Teeth

iStock/Thinkstock(ADELAIDE, Australia) — Parents have heard all the reasons why they should steer their kids away from certain popular beverages that are loaded with either sugar or caffeine or both. However, a study from Australia’s University of Adelaide brings up another downside of soft drinks, fruit juice and sports drinks, which is high acidity.

Dr. Sarbin Ranjitkar and his team say that the acids in these drinks can cause tooth enamel to wear away, not to mention make the teeth discolored and sensitive.

And if that isn’t bad enough, Ranjitkar warns of the dreaded “triple threat” that can do irreparable damage to young teeth. In addition to the effects of acid in beverages, he says that many teens also grind their teeth when they sleep and the combination of that and acids produced by the stomach because of reflux present a nightmare scenario.

Ranjitkar’s advice to parents then is to limit soft drinks, fruit juice and sports drinks since enamel erosion can occur within 30 seconds of acid in contact with teeth.

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Acid in Popular Beverages Can Wreck Youngsters’ Teeth

iStock/Thinkstock(ADELAIDE, Australia) — Parents have heard all the reasons why they should steer their kids away from certain popular beverages that are loaded with either sugar or caffeine or both. However, a study from Australia’s University of Adelaide brings up another downside of soft drinks, fruit juice and sports drinks, which is high acidity.

Dr. Sarbin Ranjitkar and his team say that the acids in these drinks can cause tooth enamel to wear away, not to mention make the teeth discolored and sensitive.

And if that isn’t bad enough, Ranjitkar warns of the dreaded “triple threat” that can do irreparable damage to young teeth. In addition to the effects of acid in beverages, he says that many teens also grind their teeth when they sleep and the combination of that and acids produced by the stomach because of reflux present a nightmare scenario.

Ranjitkar’s advice to parents then is to limit soft drinks, fruit juice and sports drinks since enamel erosion can occur within 30 seconds of acid in contact with teeth.

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American Says ‘Sense of Humanity’ Makes Him Fight Ebola

Hemera/Thinkstock(BOSTON) — Wellbody Alliance operates the largest primary care clinic in Sierra Leone. The clinic is close to the epicenter of the deadly Ebola outbreak that is raging throughout western Africa.

Raphael Frankfurter, the group’s 23-year-old executive director, returned from the country last week after spending several months there. The chief Ebola physician in the country recently died from the virus, wreaking havoc within the healthcare community there, he said. His team felt that as a non-medical person, he would be safer and more useful raising funds and coordinating programs in Boston where the organization is based.

Before Frankfurter left Sierra Leone, a woman died from Ebola in a nearby hospital after attending a funeral where she likely washed and wrapped an infected corpse, as is the local custom. He was tasked with finding all 35 people she had come in contact with and convincing them to come in for testing.

“People are not always receptive to us because of the aggressive way healthcare workers have met people in the community,” he said, explaining that armed military often surround the homes of suspected Ebola cases and isolate them for weeks at a time. “We tried a much more relaxed approach to engage them respectfully so they don’t feel as marginalized or intimidated.”

Frankfurter said with Ebola cases on the rise, the mood in Sierra Leone is tense.

“I couldn’t help feeling some of the tension myself, but rationally I was not afraid for my life. I know it is very difficult to contract Ebola unless you come into contact with a very sick person’s bodily fluids,” he said.

His family is concerned but they respect his work, he said.

“They are supportive and I appreciate the stress I am putting them through. I have reassured them many times that I have limited contact with patients,” he said.

Frankfurter said he is planning on returning to Sierra Leone as soon as it makes sense, possibly in September or October. He said a shared sense of humanity drives him to help the people of the region through this crisis.

“I’m motivated by a strong sense of ‘these people going through this in Sierra Leone could be me,'” Frankfurter said. “There is so much need. I couldn’t live with not engaging and trying to address some of these problems.”

Like many humanitarian aid groups, Wellbody Alliance has removed all but essential medical personnel from the hot zone. Their doctors remain to fight one of the deadliest Ebola outbreaks in history at great personal risk, Frankfurter noted.

Of the 1,711 Ebola cases currently reported, 145 of them are healthcare workers, according to the World Health Organization. There are 80 healthcare workers among the 932 confirmed deaths in all affected countries.

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American Says ‘Sense of Humanity’ Makes Him Fight Ebola

Hemera/Thinkstock(BOSTON) — Wellbody Alliance operates the largest primary care clinic in Sierra Leone. The clinic is close to the epicenter of the deadly Ebola outbreak that is raging throughout western Africa.

Raphael Frankfurter, the group’s 23-year-old executive director, returned from the country last week after spending several months there. The chief Ebola physician in the country recently died from the virus, wreaking havoc within the healthcare community there, he said. His team felt that as a non-medical person, he would be safer and more useful raising funds and coordinating programs in Boston where the organization is based.

Before Frankfurter left Sierra Leone, a woman died from Ebola in a nearby hospital after attending a funeral where she likely washed and wrapped an infected corpse, as is the local custom. He was tasked with finding all 35 people she had come in contact with and convincing them to come in for testing.

“People are not always receptive to us because of the aggressive way healthcare workers have met people in the community,” he said, explaining that armed military often surround the homes of suspected Ebola cases and isolate them for weeks at a time. “We tried a much more relaxed approach to engage them respectfully so they don’t feel as marginalized or intimidated.”

Frankfurter said with Ebola cases on the rise, the mood in Sierra Leone is tense.

“I couldn’t help feeling some of the tension myself, but rationally I was not afraid for my life. I know it is very difficult to contract Ebola unless you come into contact with a very sick person’s bodily fluids,” he said.

His family is concerned but they respect his work, he said.

“They are supportive and I appreciate the stress I am putting them through. I have reassured them many times that I have limited contact with patients,” he said.

Frankfurter said he is planning on returning to Sierra Leone as soon as it makes sense, possibly in September or October. He said a shared sense of humanity drives him to help the people of the region through this crisis.

“I’m motivated by a strong sense of ‘these people going through this in Sierra Leone could be me,'” Frankfurter said. “There is so much need. I couldn’t live with not engaging and trying to address some of these problems.”

Like many humanitarian aid groups, Wellbody Alliance has removed all but essential medical personnel from the hot zone. Their doctors remain to fight one of the deadliest Ebola outbreaks in history at great personal risk, Frankfurter noted.

Of the 1,711 Ebola cases currently reported, 145 of them are healthcare workers, according to the World Health Organization. There are 80 healthcare workers among the 932 confirmed deaths in all affected countries.

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Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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Stress in a Marriage Affects Interaction with Kids

iStock/Thinkstock(UNIVERSITY PARK, Texas) — Many children have natural radar systems that go into overdrive when there’s an undercurrent of tension in the house between mom and dad.

Southern Methodist University psychologist Chrystyna D. Kouros says that’s all the more reason for parents to try and cool things down because their stress and bad feelings can also affect each one’s relationship with their children.

In examining 200 families who wrote about their experiences for 15 days, Kouros learned that moms seemed to over-compensate when marriages were going through rocky patches and as a result, they would generally be more caring with their children.

However, dads were different and not in a good way. When their wives exhibited signs of being depressed, it affected men negatively and that led to worse interactions with the youngsters.

The bottom line, Kouros said, is that the quality of a marriage has an enormous effect on the entire family and parents need to be more cognizant of that fact and how children react to it.

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Stress in a Marriage Affects Interaction with Kids

iStock/Thinkstock(UNIVERSITY PARK, Texas) — Many children have natural radar systems that go into overdrive when there’s an undercurrent of tension in the house between mom and dad.

Southern Methodist University psychologist Chrystyna D. Kouros says that’s all the more reason for parents to try and cool things down because their stress and bad feelings can also affect each one’s relationship with their children.

In examining 200 families who wrote about their experiences for 15 days, Kouros learned that moms seemed to over-compensate when marriages were going through rocky patches and as a result, they would generally be more caring with their children.

However, dads were different and not in a good way. When their wives exhibited signs of being depressed, it affected men negatively and that led to worse interactions with the youngsters.

The bottom line, Kouros said, is that the quality of a marriage has an enormous effect on the entire family and parents need to be more cognizant of that fact and how children react to it.

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Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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