Review Category : Health

Eight Children Hospitalized for Possible Rare Nervous System Disorder

Seattle Children’s Hospital(SEATTLE) — Federal and state health officials are investigating a possible cluster of a rare nervous system disorder after multiple children reported symptoms, including weakness or loss of movement in one or more limbs.

Eight children in the Washington state were hospitalized recently for symptoms that matched a rare condition called acute flaccid myleititis (AFM). It is condition that affects the nervous system, specifically the spinal cord, and can occur due to various causes, including the polio virus.

Experts at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as well as the Washington State Health Department are still evaluating if these children’s symptoms point to AFM as an “exact cause” and other conditions are being investigated as well, according to the Washington State Health Department.

“None of them have been confirmed or ruled out,” department spokeswoman Julie Graham told ABC News.

“At this point there isn’t evidence that would point to a single source of illness among these cases,” Dr. Scott Lindquist, state infectious disease epidemiologist at the Department of Health, said in the statement on Friday.

All of the children, between the ages of 3 to 14, reported a loss of strength or movement in one or more limbs. Three of the children remain hospitalized and five have been released, according to the state health department.

Since AFM can be caused by a viral infection, officials at Seattle Children’s Hospital have taken steps to minimize the risk of infection among patients.

“At Seattle Children’s, patient safety is our top priority and parents should rest assured that it is safe to bring their children to the hospital,” Dr. Mark Del Beccaro, chief medical officer at Seattle Children’s Hospital, said in a statement. “We are following our standard infection control protocols, including putting patients with symptoms of active respiratory infections in isolation so they do not have contact with any other patients.”

The CDC was already investigating an increase of AFM cases in the U.S., with at least 50 cases reported by last August compared to 21 cases in all of 2015. In 2014, 120 cases of AFM were reported throughout the U.S. just between August and December. At the time, the CDC and other health agencies were investigating if a virus called enterovirus D68 was linked to the increase in cases. Enterovirus D68 spread rapidly in 2014 and infected many children. Some of the children developed AFM, but the CDC has not “consistently detected a pathogen” in the spinal fluid of infected patients, making the cause impossible to pinpoint.

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Mom Pushes Triplets in Stroller for Half Marathon, Potential World Record

Suzy Goodwin(FAYETTEVILLE, N.C.) — A North Carolina mother of four children may have set a Guinness World Record after racing a half marathon while pushing her 14-month-old triplets in a stroller.

Suzy Goodwin, 35, ran the Fayetteville, North Carolina, Halloween Half Marathon Sunday in 2 hours, 1 minute and 19 seconds, according to race results.

Goodwin has submitted her official race time to the Guinness Book of World Records. If approved, she would set the world record in a new category, completing a half marathon with a triple stroller.

Goodwin, also the mother of a 3-year-old son, said she has run 50 marathons in 42 states since she started running 15 years ago. After finding that the triplets enjoyed being in the stroller while she ran, she raced to a first place female finish in a 5K in May and then was inspired to set a world record.

“A triple stroller record is just obscure enough,” said Goodwin, whose husband is a U.S. Army captain stationed at Ft. Bragg. “There are people I’m sure who will come along and break it, but in the spirit of camaraderie, I hope they do.”

Goodwin’s 2-hour race time Sunday included a stop to change a diaper around mile seven and keeping her babies happy with pacifiers, crackers and entertainment.

“It was the most proud I’ve ever been to run,” Goodwin said. “It’s always great to pass the men and hear them mutter under their breath, ‘The mom with three babies just passed me.'”

Goodwin said she also ran the race to support the nurses and doctors of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Cape Fear Valley Health, where her triplets, Charlotte, Gabriel and Gideon, spent the first 10 weeks of their lives.

“The most satisfying thing is hearing from nurses who haven’t seen the triplets in a year saying, “It’s great to see the Goodwin triplets,'” she said. “This is the biggest way I know to say thank you and honor the work God did through the NICU nurses and doctors.”

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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New Patch May Help Kids with Peanut Allergies

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Parents of children suffering from peanut allergies may soon have a new weapon in their arsenals.

A new wearable skin patch tested by children allowed nearly half of them to consume at least 10 times the amount of peanut protein. The findings were part of a year-long study funded by the National Institutes of Health.

Researchers also found kids between the ages of 4 and 11 saw the biggest benefit, while those 12 and older didn’t see as much of an effect.

The patch works by delivering small amounts of peanut protein in an effort to build the skin’s immune system’s tolerance to it. So far, it has not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Your Body: Arthritis Drug May Help Those Suffering from Alopecia

iStock/ThinkstockBy DR. JENNIFER ASHTON, ABC News Senior Medical Contributor

Approximately 6.5 million people in the U.S. suffer from alopecia areata, an auto-immune condition in which the immune system attacks a person’s own hair follicles, causing them to lose big patches of hair or even go completely bald.

But now, new research is showing an arthritis drug called XELJANZ may help some people with alopecia regrow hair. The theory is that the drug blocks inflammation that destroys the hair follicle.

A few words of caution: The drug is expensive and can cause side effects such as a weakened immune system or tears in the lining of the intestinal tract.

Other causes of thinning hair can be helped by shampoos, platelet rich plasma (PRP) injections into the scalp, supplements or light caps.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Baby Girl Gets Adorably Upset When Parents Kiss In Front Of Her

Courtesy Matt Hanneken(GLEN BURNIE, Md.) — When one baby saw her parents kissing in front of her, she broke down in a fit of tears.

Thankfully, the tears subsided when 5-month-old Ella’s parents kissed her on her cheeks.

Proud father Matt Hanneken told ABC News that it’s a bedtime ritual that he and his wife, Krissy, have with each of their kids. The two are also parents to Tyler, 8, and Carter, 5.

“We would kind of kiss them at the same time every night before going to sleep, and [the boys] would get a kick out of it and they’d laugh and they’d love it,” he recalled.

The Glen Burnie, Maryland, father noted that his daughter Ella also seemed to love the routine, except for on this fateful day on Oct. 3.

“This particular night, she started to give us that look. My wife said, ‘She must be off her game tonight,'” Matt Hanneken recalled, saying that’s when his wife grabbed the camera to record the hilarious reaction.

Now when the parents kiss Ella good night “she’s all giggles and all smiles.”

Matt Hanneken said he’s glad the video of his daughter went viral because it’s important that parents teach their kids how to love.

“Love is an expression,” he continued. “For kids to know that they’re loved, they need to see it, they need to experience it so then they can show it to others as well.”

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Husband’s Ode to Stay-at-Home Wife Captures Heart of Internet

Courtesy Kate Douglas (NEW YORK) — One man’s online ode to his stay-at-home wife, the mother of his two boys, has the internet swooning.

Scott Douglas wrote a note to his wife after what she called “a hard day” with her two boys. Kate Douglas shared the note in a post on Facebook. Since then, it has been shared more than 11,000 times.

The Newcastle, Australia, mom became “very emotional” when she saw the post, she told ABC News.

“I was in a room full of mums when I read it; who were also all in tears,” she added. “It was just what I needed to hear at that moment.”

Since the post went viral, Kate Douglas said, she has been surprised by “mums who say that they have never felt appreciated by their other half.”

The comments on the post are overwhelmingly positive. “Wow! You have a king! So nice to know that a man actually realizes what we do all day! We NEVER clock off! He is a keeper,” Lisa Compagne wrote.

“This bloke is an incredible role model for his sons,” Pauline Matejczuk wrote. “They can’t fail with his attitude.”

Scott Douglas is “surprised” by the reaction to his tribute, he told ABC News.

“I think it has resonated so well because any type of mother, whether working or stay-at-home put so much pressure on themselves to make sure the household stays in order and the kids have everything they need,” he said.

“Then when a bad day comes along they question themselves. I think with what I wrote has let them know they are not alone by having those days but also there are positives in those days, and to be appreciated for the bad days is very rewarding for them too.”

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Fringe ‘Church’ Founder on MMS: It’s No Cure

ABC News(NEW YORK) — The founder of a fringe “church” who had claimed a chemical solution could cure virtually any disease, from autism to cancer to herpes, said he takes it back — just days after ABC News tracked him down in Mexico to ask about the dangerous game prosecutors say his church is playing with desperate people.

“There are certainly times I have said some things that I probably should have said differently. For lack of a better way to express things at the time — or because others put words in my mouth, in the past I have stated that MMS cures most of all diseases. Today, I say that MMS cures nothing!” Jim Humble, founder and archbishop of the Genesis II Church of Health and Healing, wrote in a newsletter posted on the church’s website Thursday.

But while federal prosecutors say MMS, Miracle Mineral Solution, is really just industrial bleach, Humble maintained in his note that it, along with “various other important health tools,” can “combat the ill effects of poor foods, and chemicals that make us sick.”

U.S. officials and medical experts told ABC News that it’s the MMS that can make people very sick, as shown Friday on ABC News “20/20”.

“They might as well be selling Clorox,” said Ben Mizer of the Department of Justice, who indicted four people for selling the stuff in Nevada in 2013. “You wouldn’t drink Clorox, so there is no reason to drink MMS.”

Humble and other church officials in the U.S. and around the world have marketed MMS as a miracle cure or treatment online and at weekend seminars, held up as a way to overcome breast cancer or childhood autism. ABC News was there at one of the seminars presided over by a church archbishop, Mark Grenon.

“HIV. I wish everyone had HIV, and that’s all the disease we had to deal with. We’d get rid of that quick. Easy,” Grenon said at one point. And later: “So what would you use this for? The cancer, Lyme disease, Parkinson’s. Stuff that’s taking a long time to heal. Usually within three to six months, they’re fine.”

Outside that conference, ABC News asked Grenon about his claims. He denied that the church was doing anything wrong, stood by the claims MMS can cure diseases and accused an ABC News reporter of being an “actor” and “pawn” of the pharmaceutical industry.

Humble was more difficult to track down, but ABC News eventually found him living in a small town outside Guadalajara, Mexico, outside the reach of American law. There, Humble maintained that MMS should be given to women with breast cancer and children with autism. When asked about allegations that he was just a con man, Humble said they “ain’t true.”

The newsletter with Humble’s apparent dramatic reversal on the “cure” claims came this week amid a flood of emails into an ABC News reporter’s inbox from MMS supporters — hundreds of emails that came in the wake of ABC News’ first online report Wednesday calling it and later reports lies.

“MMS saved my life,” wrote one person from Malaysia. Another man from Michigan wrote, “I have been using MMS for 10 [years] now and it has helped me with my health in several different ways ranging from the common cold to eliminating cancer.” One woman added, “Whenever my dogs looked really sick, MMS has helped to cure the sickness sometimes immediately.”

More than 500 people reached out to the ABC News producer to tell their stories of using MMS, many, like Grenon, accusing ABC News of being beholden to “big pharma.”

“You need to get a real job,” wrote one Humble follower. “You need to stop harassing wonderful, honest hearted, good people like Jim Humble. You need to stop the lies and wake up.”

It’s unclear what the reaction inside the pro-MMS community was to Humble’s recantation.

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Twin Gets Upset When She Discovers Her Sister Is 1 Minute Older in Adorable Video ORANGE, N.J.) — The moment when Alexis McClure realized that her twin sister Ava was one minute older than her has captured the Internet’s attention — because it’s just so darn cute.

In the video, which has gone viral on social media, Alexis is listening to her mother, Ami, inform her that her sister is older.

“Ava was born one minute older than Alexis; one minute,” Ami says in the video.

“But I want to be older,” Alexis says with faux tears in her eyes.

“You’re one minute younger, you don’t have to cry,” her mother says, trying to comfort her. Then her big sister also tries to comfort her saying, “I’m just one minute older. That’s it!” Then the hugs come and our hearts melt.

“I want to grow,” Alexis tearfully pushes out as her mother laughs.

The twin girls’ father Justin told ABC News that he and his wife of one year started a YouTube channel for their girls as a way to spread positivity.

“I used to be a comedian and a writer,” the West Orange, New Jersey, dad continued. “I don’t do that anymore because I laugh way more just being a dad that I ever would just being an adult on my own.”

Justin, 42, now spends his time working at a law firm and photographing his daughters.

“We’re a modern family that embraces culture,” he said, noting that his wife is Nigerian while he hails from North Georgia.

“All along we’ve tried to be a family that brings joy, especially in this time when there’s so much negativity,” Justin added.

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See This Amputee’s Amazing Halloween Costume as Lumiere From ‘Beauty and the Beast’

Josh Sundquist(NEW YORK) — One amputee took a page out of a fairytale this Halloween.

Josh Sundquist, who had his left leg amputated after being diagnosed with a rare form of bone cancer at the age of 9, is dressing up as Lumière from “Beauty and the Beast.”

A photo of the Santa Monica, California, man as the animated candlestick is now going viral online. In an Instagram caption, Sundquist wrote, “Want to see my #HalloweenCostume? Be my guest.”

Sundquist, 32, told ABC News he’s been brainstorming his Halloween costume for about three months. He keeps a running list of ideas on his phone.

The motivational speaker gets help from his assistant, Lisa McLaughlin, to create his costumes each year, which have gone viral before.

“They’re pretty time-consuming,” he said. “But Lisa basically builds them from scratch. She’s incredibly good at crafting.”

McLaughlin spent weeks creating Lumière.

According to Sundquist, McLaughlin purchased a metallic gold morph suit. Next, the base was made out of papier-mâché and covered with gold fabric. The candle holder was made out of decorative tubes — or poster board glued into a cylinder — topped with clay to create the illusion of dripping wax.

“On my face is a silicon nose that I bought on Amazon and clown makeup,” Sundquist added.

Previously, Sundquist has dressed up as the Gingerbread Man, an IHOP sign and even a pink flamingo.

“The flamingo — that was really crazy,” Sundquist recalled. “Probably no matter how many costumes I make there’s never going to be one that’s quite as uncanny looking as this one.”

Disney is the parent company of ABC News.

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Mom of Toddler with Down Syndrome Pushing Brands to Put Children with Disabilities in Ads

Crystal Barbee Photography(ATLANTA) — A Georgia mom fighting to get companies not only to value children with disabilities as consumers of their brand, but also to feature them in their advertisements, got some huge news Friday: an invitation for her toddler with Down syndrome to model in a Carter’s holiday advertising campaign.

Meagan Nash, 27, of Buford, Georgia, came across a casting call in July for Carter’s, a children’s clothing brand. So, she sent photos of her 15-month-old son, Asher, to a talent agent because he met the requirements for the call.

When she didn’t hear back from the talent agency, the mother of two said she reached out to the agent.

“Her [the agent’s] response to me was, ‘I did get the submission but I did not submit because the criteria did not specify that they were looking for a baby with special needs,'” Nash said. “And to that, I asked her, ‘Well, did they specify that they were not looking for a baby with special needs?’ And she said ‘No.’ She said they didn’t specify either way.”

Nash said the agent apologized and said she’d submit Asher’s pictures but the incident got the Georgia wife and mother thinking for months about how many other talent agencies were not entering the photographs of children with disabilities.

“I was hurt,” she said. “I was really hurt. … I’m seeing this baby [Asher] that I think would be a huge contribution to the modeling world. … He didn’t even get the chance to be rejected by Carter’s because he never even got submitted. I felt angry.”

Eventually, Nash came across Changing the Face of Beauty, an organization that, in part, identifies companies that have not yet used children with disabilities in their marketing. Nash said she picked OshKosh B’gosh, a subsidiary of Carter’s.

“I put a picture [of Asher] on Facebook with OshKosh and I shouted out to them, asking them to please change the face of beauty and use him [Asher] in the advertisement,” Nash said. “My end goal was that I wanted OshKosh to hear what we were saying and I wanted them to consider using kids with disabilities in their ads.”

Her post went viral, after it was picked up by a Facebook page called Kids With Down Syndrome. Nash said that within a day of her post being shared, OshKosh B’gosh had reached out to her.

Nash and Asher met this week with representatives of OshKosh B’gosh at its headquarters. She said she spoke to Carter’s and OshKosh B’gosh about how important it was for their brands to include children with disabilities in their advertising. By the end of the meeting, she said, everyone was smitten with Asher.

“It made me feel really good, as his mom, as his advocate,” said Nash, who also works with the Down Syndrome Association of Atlanta. “I feel accomplished. I feel like I set out to tell Asher’s story, to be heard, for him to be heard. And that is exactly what happened, we were heard. Our message was delivered.”

In a statement to ABC News, OshKosh B’gosh thanked Nash for raising the companies’ awareness on the issue.

“OshKosh B’gosh enjoyed spending time with Asher and his family earlier this week and hearing their perspective. We appreciate Ms. Nash’s passion for greater inclusiveness of children with special needs in advertising. … We are committed to evolving our process to ensure that in the future children with special needs are better represented in our advertising campaigns,” a representative said.

Carter’s confirmed Friday that Asher will be modeling in its holiday campaign and that a shoot had been scheduled for the coming weeks.

Nash, who also has an 8-year-old daughter, Addison, said her family was excited about the news and that other companies had since expressed interest in using Asher as a model.

“If Asher, when Asher is used in these advertisements, he will be the first one and for him, for the Down syndrome community and for people with disabilities that’s iconic for them,” she said. “It’s a huge accomplishment.

“My real goal for him [Asher] in life is just for him to be included,” Nash said. “I want him to be included with his peers when he goes to school. I want him to be included when he is an adult and he is going to work.

“I just want him to be able to live in a world where he has full inclusion and he is accepted for who he is, not for his diagnosis.”

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