Review Category : Health

Mom Receives Son’s Kidney After His Fatal Stroke

ABC News/Perry family(OAK PARK, Ill.) — An Illinois woman said she physically feels fine after her kidney surgery, but is in emotional pain as she mourns the death of her son, the kidney donor who likely saved her life.

Less than two weeks after her surgery, Rose Perry, 50, said the pain of losing her son “hurts so bad.” Perry’s son, Ronald Perry Jr., died earlier this month at age 24 from a severe stroke that lead to a coma and fatal cardiac arrhythmia.

Perry was undergoing treatment for kidney failure and Type 2 diabetes when her son suffered the stroke. Her kidney failure was so dire, she even had an upcoming appointment with a transplant doctor at Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Park, Illinois, to determine if she was healthy enough to get a transplant.

After the stroke, Ronald Perry Jr. was put into a medically induced coma to try and save his brain function, but doctors later told Rose Perry and her husband that their son would not recover. At that point, the family was asked, along with their younger son, Christopher, if they would consider organ donation.

“I right away said no,” Rose Perry told ABC News. “I don’t wish for my son’s body to be cut up. I don’t wish that.”

But Perry’s husband Ronald Perry Sr. and Christopher asked her to reconsider and asked that she consider being a possible recipient for Ronald Perry’s kidney.

“My husband and my son said, ‘We think you should let them do it,’” Rose Perry recalled. “I cried my eyes out and said, ‘I don’t want his kidney and I want my child.’”

After discussing it with her family, Rose Perry agreed to a partial organ donation but refused to let doctors transplant Ronald Perry Jr.’s heart.

“I’ve never met anyone in their lifetime that ever had anything bad to stay about him,” she told ABC News of her son, who loved camping and the Chicago White Sox. “His heart was one of a kind.”

Just hours after agreeing to the organ donation, Rose Perry met with her transplant surgeon, Dr. Deepak Mital, at Advocate Christ Medical Center, the same doctor she was scheduled to meet the next week. While she had agreed to the transplant, she still had to undergo tests to ensure she was healthy enough to receive the kidney and find out if it was a match.

Mital said when he met Perry he tried to help her by counseling her on her decision to go ahead with organ donation.

“I’m so sorry you lost your son, I think you’re making the right decision. … He can save lives,” Mital remembers telling Perry.

The Illinois mother said the two days of tests quickly became a blur. Less than 48 hours after meeting Mital, she was approved for transplant surgery on May 17.

“I was numb by then,” she said of the two days of intensive testing. “There were things I don’t even remember them. I don’t remember them taking me to surgery.”

Mital said the kidney was a near perfect match and started working right away. Perry was able to leave the hospital in just a few days. Her odds for survival doubled after the surgery, according to Mital.

“In his death … he really gave her the gift of life,” Mital said.

Perry said she is now satisfied with her decision to undergo the transplant and that she suspects it will help her in the future as she grieves her oldest son.

“I’ll just rub my belly and I’ll say, ‘Oh, Ronald, what is going on in this world,'” she said.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Female Student Sparks Debate With ‘I Don’t Shave’ Essay

Meliha Gojak/iStock/Thinkstock(LIVERPOOL, England) – A UK student has worked online readers into a lather, after writing about her refusal to shave her body hair and perpetuate what she described as “unfair expectations of women.”

In an essay that appeared in the The Tab Liverpool, titled, “I Don’t Shave and I’m Not Going To Start,” Yasmin Gasimova wrote that since having stopped shaving at the age of 11, she has endured much criticism from acquaintances and schoolmates. But she remained staunchly opposed to the notion that she should alter her natural appearance to suit societal norms.

“As someone of Turkic origin, I don’t remember ever not having hair,” Gasimova, now 19 and a computer science student at the University of Liverpool, wrote. “In fact, as early as 10, boys were making fun of my moustache and I was trying to shave my noticeably hairy stomach.”

But a year later, the author decided that shaving her abdomen and legs wasn’t worth the inconvenience it caused her, so she stopped. After a period of pushback from friends, family and boyfriends, Gasimova wrote that most people close to her eventually agreed with her personal stance.

Some commenters offered support of her position on not shaving, cheering:

“Good on you for be comfortable with your hair!”

Others asserted their dislike of female body hair.

“I’d hope the Author of this article is aware that many guys don’t like body hair on women and that she’s tough enough to take the, regrettably inevitable, abuse she’s getting,” wrote one reader.

Gasimova disagreed, she wrote:

“If you think the au naturel look is gross, it isn’t – you only believe that because you’ve been conditioned to see it that way your entire life,” wrote Gasimova. “I dream of the day I can walk around in the summer in shorts, without being conscious of people judging me. It will, however, take many of my sisters joining me and ridding the public of the shock.”

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Cut Sugar The Right Way

YelenaYemchuk/iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Americans consume more sugar than anyone else in the world.

The World Health Organization has long called for adults and children to reduce their sugar intake to roughly 50 grams (12 teaspoons) or less a day. But recent recommendations suggest limiting sugar intake even further to less than five percent of total calories—half of the original recommendation.

Cutting back on sugar consumption can be more than just good for a waistline, it can also reduce tooth decay and prevent diabetes in the long run, Harvard researchers say.

Still, Kristin Kirkpatrick, a registered dietician at the Cleveland Clinic says replacing sugar with artificial sweeteners can actually cause more harm.

“You’re still giving your taste buds the sugar that it’s craving and artificial sweeteners tend to be a lot sweeter than actual, real sugar,” Kirkpatrick says.

She suggests it’s better to just cut sugar out of your diet — quell cravings with nuts or a piece of fruit instead. Getting more sleep is helpful too: it’s even harder for sleepy people to cut back on sweets because of the effect of sleeplessness on the brain. Getting more fiber can also help you feel full.

“What I tell my patients on day one of meeting them is, ‘If you see sugar in the first five ingredients of any food product in your pantry, put it in the trash.'”

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Rumer Willis Shares Her Unusual Diet and Workout Secrets

ABC/Adam Taylor(NEW YORK) – When Rumer Willis took home the mirror ball trophy on Dancing with the Stars earlier this month, a lot was said about her dance moves.

But after she shared a photo of herself in a bikini on Instagram, talk has begun to focus on the singer’s figure.

“I pretty much eat the same things. I mean French fries is [sic] a very large part of my diet,” she told E! News. “But honestly, that’s just one of the reasons why I like dancing. I don’t like standing on a treadmill”

Val Chmerkovskiy, who was partnered with Willis, 26, on the ABC reality TV show teased her that she needs to run on the treadmill to get a real workout. She laughed off the joke, and continued that she prefers exercises that “actually serve a purpose.”

“To me, running on a treadmill, that seems so monotonous and I’m not working toward anything,” she said. “At least when I was dancing, I felt like, I’m doing something that’s going to give me something back. It’s not just for the sole purpose of trying to make my body look a certain way.”

After a moment and laughed: “I think I still have it right now, so I’m probably just taking it for granted.”

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Photo Series Shows ‘Bottle Feeding Is Beautiful Too’

iStock/Thinkstock(GRAHAM, Wash.) — Nikke Whitman, a birth photographer from Graham, Washington, said she finds photos of breastfeeding moms beautiful.

But she finds photos of moms bottle feeding beautiful, too.

After hearing the stories of some of her mom friends — who had a variety of reasons for bottle feeding — she realized some of them were “brokenhearted” by not breastfeeding. Others felt judged.

“For some, the choice of feeding their babies rather than letting them starve is a very real scenario,” she said.

Whitman decided to post on her blog images of women bottle feeding — and bonding with — their babies. “There is undeniable bonding happening,” she said.

Whitman said she came across very surprising reasons women don’t breastfeed. In the case of her friend Brittnae she has a medical condition called Insufficient Glandular Tissue, which means the breasts don’t contain proper milk-making tissue. Other reasons: past abuse (it can trigger memories of past events); dad wanting to share in bonding time; mastectomy and more.

The feedback has been incredibly positive, said Whitman, herself a mom of three girls. “There should be no judgment. This [motherhood] is a hard enough job.”

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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With Generic Prescription Drug Prices Surging, Families Are Feeling the Squeeze

Pictac/iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) – When Tricia Salese called her local pharmacy for a price check on her next prescription refill, she was stunned when the pharmacist told her the cost of her generic-brand pain medication had gone up again.

Salese, 49, started talking fentanyl citrate, the generic version of Actiq, a powerful painkiller, in 2010, and she takes three doses per day. Back then, she said, the price per dose was 50 cents. Now, the pharmacist told her, it was going to cost her $37.49 per dose.

“I thought $25 [per dose for generics] was a lot. $37 is just — what is this stuff made of? I mean, this is ridiculous,” Salese said.

Salese takes fentanyl citrate to help her function with endometriosis, a chronic disease where the lining of the uterus grows outside of the womb and causes lesions that can worsen over time. The condition leaves her in constant, crippling pain and this medication is not covered by her insurance. With the cost going up, Salese said she’s had to dip into her retirement savings to pay for her prescriptions.

The staggering cost of some generic brand drugs has led patients and pharmacists across the country to ask questions about alarming price increases on certain drugs — the once reliably low-cost copies of the more expensive branded products.

In the span of one year, from 2012 to 2013, the cost of the generic blood pressure medication captopril jumped more than 2,700 percent, the asthma drug albuterol sulfate went up more than 3,400 percent and the antibiotic doxycycline jumped a whopping 6,300 percent, according to National Average Drug Acquisition Cost (NADAC) statistics.

“My customers walk away silent, in shock,” said Aniedi Etuk, who has been a pharmacist for 12 years. “Some of them have to choose between taking their drugs and buying food for their family.”

In the past, when a branded drug lost its patent, generics entered the market and prices plummeted, saving the American health care system billions of dollars. Generics have served to help make drugs affordable, but now, prices are trending the other way.

Jonathan Alpern is the chief resident of internal medicine at Regions Hospital in St. Paul, Minnesota, and was one of the co-authors of a New England Journal of Medicine article that helped bring the issue to light.

“One of the things that’s difficult with all of this is transparency,” Alpern said. “So when the prices go up, it’s nice for providers and patients to know first of all — what drugs are going up and why. It was really hard to find out that information… [and] I was initially shocked and when we started to see that this was happening to multiple other common drugs.”

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., a Democratic presidential candidate, places the blame for rising costs on drug makers and the robust prescription drug lobby.

“The short answer is greed,” Sanders said. “They can do it. They can get away with it. They can make outrageous sums of profits and money on this and that’s what they’re doing.”

Last week, Sanders, along with Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., introduced a new bill aimed at curbing generic drug prices.

“Our job in Congress is to say to these drug companies, ‘You can’t keep ripping off the American people,’” Sanders said. “’You can’t force folks to be in a situation where they can’t purchase the medicine they desperately need.’ That’s what we should be doing.”

The U.S. is currently one of a few developed countries that doesn’t negotiate prices with the pharmaceutical industry, Sanders said. Current federal law prohibits Medicare from negotiating lower prices with drug companies. Although Sanders’s new proposal won’t give the federal government the power to do so, it will require generic drug makers to pay Medicaid a rebate any time prices rise above and beyond inflation. Brand name drug makers already do this.

Profit is no doubt a driving force in the recent price spike of generics. But experts say prices can also rise for other reasons, including raw material shortages, manufacturing disruptions because of factory closings or violations, or companies leaving the market or merging with competitors. All of those factors reduce supply and competition. Drug companies argue that another factor is that the FDA has been slow to approve the thousands of generic drugs currently in its backlog.

Ralph G. Neas, the president and chief executive of the Generic Pharmaceutical Association, told ABC News’ Nightline in a statement that “some short-term cost fluctuations may occur for individual products facing unique circumstances,” but that the generally lower cost of generic drugs brings value that is “consistent and irrefutable.”

There are signs that regulators are cracking down on rising prices. Last year, the U.S. Department of Justice issued grand jury subpoenas to three drug makers in relation to price spikes and, just last month, the Department of Health and Human Services also agreed to investigate price spikes.

Watch the full story on “Nightline” Thursday night at 12:35 a.m. ET

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Study Finds Earlier, More Aggressive Treatment Helps HIV-Positive Patients Live Longer

Photo Illustration by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — When it comes to treating HIV, the sooner, the better. That’s the latest from a large-scale National Institutes of Health study released Wednesday.

The study found that even patients in the early stages of HIV diagnosis, with relatively healthy immune systems, reduced their risk of death by more than half when put on antiretroviral drugs. Being put on medication when their immune systems were stronger also reduced patients’ risk of developing full-blown AIDS.

“We now have clear-cut proof that it is of significantly greater health benefit to an HIV-infected person to start antiretroviral therapy sooner rather than later,” said Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at NIH.

Findings held true for participants around the globe, with investigators finding similar results in both low- and high-income countries.

Because of the new findings, the NIH is changing their HIV treatment recommendations.

“We now have strong evidence that early treatment is beneficial to the HIV-positive person. These results support treating everyone,” said Dr. Jens Lundgren of the University of Copenhagen, one of the co-chairs of the study.

The study overturns older thinking about HIV treatment, which was that the toxic side effects of antiretroviral drugs should be avoided until a patient’s immune system started to suffer.

Side effects for going on antiretroviral drugs can be severe, including bone death and heart disease — in addition to a lifetime of daily pill schedules. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 1.2 million Americans are living with HIV.

Taking antiretroviral drugs has also been proven to reduce risk of transmitting HIV to uninfected sexual partners. Based on these interim results, all of the study participants are being offered antiretroviral treatment if they’re not already on it. The international four-year study will continue until 2016.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Study Finds Earlier, More Agressive Treatment Helps HIV-Positive Patients Live Longer

Photo Illustration by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — When it comes to treating HIV, the sooner, the better. That’s the latest from a large-scale National Institutes of Health study, released Wednesday.

The study found that even patients in the early stages of HIV diagnosis, with relatively healthy immune systems, reduced their risk of death by more than half when put on antiretroviral drugs. Being put on medication when their immune systems were stronger also reduced patients’ risk of developing full-blown AIDS.

“We now have clear-cut proof that it is of significantly greater health benefit to an HIV-infected person to start antiretroviral therapy sooner rather than later,” said Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at NIH.

Findings held true for participants around the globe, with investigators finding similar results in both low- and high-income countries.

Because of the new findings, the NIH is changing their HIV treatment recommendations.

“We now have strong evidence that early treatment is beneficial to the HIV-positive person. These results support treating everyone,” said Dr. Jens Lundgren of the University of Copenhagen, one of the co-chairs of the study.

The study overturns older thinking about HIV treatment, which was that the toxic side effects of antiretroviral drugs should be avoided until a patient’s immune system started to suffer.

Side effects for going on antiretroviral drugs can be severe, including bone death and heart disease—in addition to a lifetime of daily pill schedules. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 1.2 million Americans are living with HIV.

Taking antiretroviral drugs has also been proven to reduce risk of transmitting HIV to uninfected sexual partners. Based on these interim results, all of the study participants are being offered antiretroviral treatment if they’re not already on it. The international four-year study will continue until 2016.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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New and Totally Bizarre Baby Names

Stacey Newman/iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — If you’re about to have a baby, please don’t name him Billion. The experts implore you.

Citing data from the Social Security Department’s Extended Name List, popular baby-naming site Nameberry has listed their picks for the 12 worst names.

“Swastik has to be the very worst, but Ruckus is right down there,” said Pamela Redmond Satran, a Nameberry baby-naming expert.

Someone named their child Swastik? Not just one person — to make the list, at least five babies had to be given this name for the first time in 2014. So a minimum of five people thought that was a good idea.

The Dirty Dozen:


Billion

“Cash is an up-and-coming baby name, and Rich has been around for decades,” Nameberry said. “So how about coming out and naming a number? Billion was used for five baby boys for the first time this year, though there were also 11 boys named Million and babies of both sexes named Amillion.”

Common

“If you are choosing a highly unusual name to help your child stand out from the crowd, this one does anything but.”

Dagger

“Where will the trend for Bad Boy names end? Dagger is one of the new violent names added to the lexicon this year,” Nameberry said.

Lay

The site said Lay was a name given to seven baby girls last year.

Londynne

Nameberry said London’s been popular in recent years, and with “such popularity inevitably spawns spelling variations.”

Mickinley

There were also five girls named Kennydi.

Payzley

It’s another target “for spelling adventurists,” Nameberry said.

Royaltee

“We’re not sure that new choices such as Royaltee, Royalti, and Royel set quite the right blueblood tone.”

Ruckus

Given to eight babies in 2014.

Sadman

Nameberry called it “as grating as the “uplifting” new names like Excel (seven girls) or Legendary (five boys).”

Swastik

Given to seven boys.

Wimberly

“Wimberley is a particularly entertaining member of the kind of new name introduced by parents looking to improve on an original by giving it a new first initial, or switching a few letters or sounds around.”

ABC News Videos | ABC Entertainment News

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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New and Totally Bizarre Baby Names

Stacey Newman/iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — If you’re about to have a baby, please don’t name him Billion. The experts implore you.

Citing data from the Social Security Department’s Extended Name List, popular baby-naming site Nameberry has listed their picks for the 12 worst names.

“Swastik has to be the very worst, but Ruckus is right down there,” said Pamela Redmond Satran, a Nameberry baby-naming expert.

Someone named their child Swastik? Not just one person — to make the list, at least five babies had to be given this name for the first time in 2014. So a minimum of five people thought that was a good idea.

The Dirty Dozen:


Billion

“Cash is an up-and-coming baby name, and Rich has been around for decades,” Nameberry said. “So how about coming out and naming a number? Billion was used for five baby boys for the first time this year, though there were also 11 boys named Million and babies of both sexes named Amillion.”

Common

“If you are choosing a highly unusual name to help your child stand out from the crowd, this one does anything but.”

Dagger

“Where will the trend for Bad Boy names end? Dagger is one of the new violent names added to the lexicon this year,” Nameberry said.

Lay

The site said Lay was a name given to seven baby girls last year.

Londynne

Nameberry said London’s been popular in recent years, and with “such popularity inevitably spawns spelling variations.”

Mickinley

There were also five girls named Kennydi.

Payzley

It’s another target “for spelling adventurists,” Nameberry said.

Royaltee

“We’re not sure that new choices such as Royaltee, Royalti, and Royel set quite the right blueblood tone.”

Ruckus

Given to eight babies in 2014.

Sadman

Nameberry called it “as grating as the “uplifting” new names like Excel (seven girls) or Legendary (five boys).”

Swastik

Given to seven boys.

Wimberly

“Wimberley is a particularly entertaining member of the kind of new name introduced by parents looking to improve on an original by giving it a new first initial, or switching a few letters or sounds around.”

ABC News Videos | ABC Entertainment News

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