Review Category : Health

Large Smoke Plume Seen After Two-Alarm Fire at NYC Hospital

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Insulation caused a two-alarm fire at a building next to a major New York City hospital Wednesday, according to officials from the FDNY.

The fire, which is now under control, broke out at the Kimmel Pavillon, part of a planned expansion by the NYU Langone Medical Center, which is located next to the main medical building, Tisch Hospital, according to the NYU Langone Medical Center spokesman.

The building is under construction and set to open in 2018.

The fire started after insulation caught fire on the seventh floor, according to the FDNY. Billowing smoke could be seen rising across the Manhattan skyline and over the East River.

Hospitals officials moved patients within Tisch Hospital due to the heavy smoke, but none were evacuated from the building. Hospital operations are continuing normally, according to a spokesman for the medical center.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Your Body: How to Cope with Sleep Paralysis

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

The symptoms Kendall Jenner described on TV, waking up temporarily unable to move or speak while your mind is completely awake — this could be something called sleep paralysis.

For many people, it’s the feeling of almost fear that you want to move your body but can’t. It typically lasts for a few seconds to as long as two minutes.

Risk factors for sleep paralysis include stress and not getting enough sleep.

So how do you improve your sleep in general? Commit to a sleep routine with as little variation as possible. Staying within an hour or two of bedtime and waketime is key to keeping your circadian rhythms stable. And make your sleep environment cool, dark, and quiet. Sweet dreams.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Babies Exposed to Zika Virus in First Trimester More Likely to Have Birth Defects, Study Says

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — A first of its kind study of U.S.-born babies exposed to the Zika virus shows higher rates of birth defects for those exposed in the first trimester of pregnancy.

The study, published Monday in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) is the first time researchers have tried to estimate the likelihood of birth defects, particularly brain abnormalities and microcephaly, developing in a fetus if a pregnant woman is infected with the Zika virus.

The highest rates of birth defects appeared to occur when the pregnant women had the virus in the first trimester. In 85 women who had Zika symptoms or exposure to the virus in the first trimester, 11 percent of the infants had birth defects.

Overall, six percent of infants born to women in the U.S. who were exposed to the Zika virus were found to have birth defects.

“These data highlight the critical importance of primary prevention as recommended by the current CDC guidelines,” the authors wrote.

Without the presence of Zika virus, microcephaly occurs in a range between two babies per 10,000 live births, or .0002 percent, and 12 babies per 10,000 live births, or .0012 percent, in the Unites States, according to the CDC.

In this study of preliminary data, researchers from various public health departments and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reviewed information on pregnant women likely exposed to the Zika virus in the U.S. and all territories, except Puerto Rico, which is monitored separately.

They identified 442 women, with an average age of 28, who were likely exposed to the Zika virus and who had completed pregnancies between December 2015 and September 2016. Of the 442 completed pregnancies, the researchers determined 26 infants had signs of birth defects, or approximately six percent. This included five fetuses that were found to have birth defects after the pregnancy ended via miscarriage, termination or still birth.

“The more you learn about his virus the nastier it gets,” Dr. William Schaffner, an infectious disease expert at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, told ABC News Wednesday.

Twenty-two of the affected infants had brain abnormalities or microcephaly, a defect characterized by an abnormally small head. The four other affected infants had signs of other birth defects including eye and hearing abnormalities. Since the majority of people infected with the virus do not exhibit symptoms and tests to detect the disease in antibodies are not always clear, researchers followed women who were likely exposed to the virus either by traveling to areas where the virus was spreading via mosquitoes or via sexual transmission with an infected person.

Schaffner said the study gives further evidence that any pregnant woman exposed to the virus should be monitored for a long after giving birth since some birth defects may not be evidence immediately after birth.

“Any baby born to a woman with Zika,” Schaffner said, “should be followed very, very carefully after birth even if they don’t have microcephaly.”

As this is one of the first studies to estimate the percentage risk of developing birth defects from the Zika virus, researchers called their findings “preliminary” and called for further long-term study.

In an accompanying editorial Dr. William Muller and Dr. Emily Miller of the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago, said even the preliminary findings can help doctors make decisions about patients exposed to the virus.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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‘Tis the Season to Decorate Safely, Consumer Product Safety Commission Warns

iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — Before lighting the menorah, switching on the Christmas lights or hanging up the mistletoe, the Consumer Product Safety Commission is encouraging those celebrating the holiday season to take caution when decorating.

Between November and December 2015, six people died and an estimated 14,000 people ended up in the hospital due to holiday-decoration related causes, with many of those injuries due to falls, cuts, back strains, accidental ingestion of a foreign objects, according to the CPSC.

Check out these tips on how to decorate safely.

Christmas Tree, Oh, Christmas Tree

While many artificial trees are fire resistant, their natural counterparts are naturally more susceptible to catching fire. The CPSC encourages homeowners to regularly inspect Christmas trees and make sure they are fresh.

But how to tell? Fresh trees will be greener, needles will be harder to pull from the branches, branches will not break too easily and trunks will likely be sticky with resin. Always make sure the tree stand is filled with water, and of course, make sure to keep trees away from any heat source, including fireplaces and radiators, as they are more likely to dry out the tree quicker.

Make sure small decorations are hung out of reach of young children, and avoid any tree decorations that may look like candy, as young children may not know the difference and attempt to eat them.

Take care when hanging any delicate decorations that may break easily. Lacerations were among the top reported decoration–related injuries last year, according to the CPSC. Also use caution on ladders, as 41 percent of holiday decorating injuries involve falls, and half of those are from ladders.

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow

Think that snow-in-a-can looks pretty? While it likely adds a magical touch to a home, the artificial snow can accidentally be ingested and cause serious irritation to the lungs, so read all directions carefully before using.

Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree

Every December, Americans unpack yards and yards of tangled Christmas lights and spend hours decorating their trees and their homes, both inside and out. But more often than not, people don’t inspect these wires before each holiday season, which may have become frayed or loose over the years.

And as this CPSC video shows, a spark from one of these old wires can quickly turn your beautiful holiday home into a blazing inferno. If concerned, purchase new lights or ensure current ones haven’t become damaged from years of use. Additionally, make sure not to use more than three standard-size sets of lights per single extension cord.

Cold December Night

Looking to stay warm over the winter by lighting a fire, or simply want to light the Menorah candles? The CPSC reminds the public to make sure all flues are open and always use a fire screen when burning wood. Keep any burning candles out of reach of pets and kids, who may accidentally knock them over, and keep all open flames away from trees, decorations curtains and furniture.

Happy decorating!

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California Mom Sparks Controversy With Article on Sleep Training Her Baby

iStock/Thinkstock(LOS ANGELES) — A mother of two who paid to have someone sleep train her 3-month-old baby while she and her husband went on a one-night getaway has sparked controversy online with an article about her experience.

Katy Landrum, a 34-year-old residential Los Angeles realtor who has been featured on the HGTV show Selling LA, recently explained in an online article for Redbook magazine her decision to hire a professional to sleep train her infant, Bo, while she went on a getaway with her husband.

Landrum wrote in the article that, “At $30 an hour, the decision to bring in a professional to manage the process seemed like a ‘no-brainer.'”

Landrum added that she planned a getaway to a luxury California spa and resort because “I didn’t want to be in earshot of Bo’s weeping. Treating ourselves to a restful retreat meant we could try to enjoy ourselves instead of dwelling on what was taking place at home.”

Sleep training refers to a sometimes controversial variety of techniques used to teach infants to sleep for longer stretches at night.

Dr. Tanya Altmann, a pediatrician at Calabasas Pediatrics in Calabasas, California, told ABC News that sleep training is often “a blend of methods depending on the baby and what the parents feel comfortable with.”

Landrum, who also has a daughter, told ABC News she and her husband planned to hire sleep training help for Bo at around 3 months of age after a close friend of Landrum’s inspired her with her own positive experience and outcome. After receiving support and a green light from their pediatrician, the couple went for it.

Landrum said that she was apprehensive about sleep training for a while.

“I was so nervous I just kept trying to come up with reasons why [Bo] wasn’t ready to do it yet,” she said.

Landrum’s article on Redbook has been shared thousands of times and received mixed reactions.

One person commented, “This is so selfish;” another said, “If a woman doesn’t have time to be a parent … then she shouldn’t have kids.”

But while some were harsh, others came to Landrum’s defense. “It helped put him on a schedule…” one wrote. Another poster added, “I’m all for making home life happy and rested for both parents.”

In response to the public reactions, Landrum said, “I know that it’s controversial for people to sleep train but for me being a working mom of two it was just something that I felt strongly about.”

Landrum is self-employed and said that despite the controversy, she feels sleep training with an expert was the right decision because it was most important for their family to sleep through the night so she could work.

Altmann said it is important to do what is best for you when it comes to sleep training, explaining, “What may be right for one family may not be right for another family.”

Doctors say parents can start to sleep train babies as soon as they are big enough to go a full night without eating. The most important thing, according to doctors, is to be consistent.

Landrum called hiring a sleep trainer “the best money I’ve ever spent.” She wrote in her Redbook article that with the sleep training expert’s help, Bo began sleeping through the night.

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Hospital Cafeteria Worker Saves Thousands of Dollars to Buy Toys for Kids at Christmas

Advocate Trinity Hospital(CHICAGO) — Jessie Tenyani has no children of her own, but for each of the past eight years, she has put away thousands of dollars from her paycheck as a hospital cafeteria worker to buy toys for kids for Christmas.

Tenyani, 55, of Chicago, hand-picks the toys, as many as 1,000 each Christmas, and donates them to children who are forced to spend the holiday in the hospital.

Miss Jessie, as she is known by colleagues at Advocate Trinity Hospital, surprised patients today at Advocate Children’s Hospital in Oak Lawn, Illinois, with nearly 1,000 toys.

“I feel great and I feel at peace because what I do is to put a smile on the face of a child who is going through so much, whatever the pain they might go through,” Tenyani said today on “Good Morning America.” “I try to calm that pain with whatever helps.”

Tenyani, who has worked at Advocate Trinity for almost 15 years, said she was inspired to spend her own money by seeing children at the hospital and on TV who were struggling and in need of help. She takes advantage of her credit union’s “Christmas Club” that deducts money automatically from her paycheck every month and releases it in October for Christmas shopping.

“God put in my heart that I should do something for the children, so what came up was I decided to buy toys,” Tenyani told ABC News.

‘It’s Like I Want to Grab the Whole Store’

Tenyani takes Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday off from work and spends the entirety of both days shopping so she can buy the most toys for her money.

Child life specialist Karen Connelly of Advocate Trinity Hospital said, “It’s not easy for patients and families to be in the hospital at Christmastime and just to know that somebody is thinking of them from our community is so heartwarming. We couldn’t be more blessed to have Jessie think of us every year.”

Before purchasing the gifts, Tenyani rents a U-Haul van and drives it on her own to transport the toys from the stores to her home. Through the weeks before Christmas, the toys take up nearly every inch of her home.

“It’s like I want to grab the whole store when I look at the toys,” she said. “I don’t have kids so I didn’t know [what kids would like] but now I know very well.”

Of dealing with crowded stores on Thanksgiving and Black Friday, Tenyani said, “It’s fun and joyful because I’m doing it for a good reason.”

Tenyani’s employer deploys a truck to her home to take the toys to Advocate Children’s Hospital. The hospital, located just outside of Chicago, is the largest network provider of pediatric services in Illinois and a major referral center for infants and children.

‘You Have to Look Out for Others’

Tenyani not only surprises the young patients in the hospital’s patient waiting room but also delivers toys to the bedsides of children too sick to attend in person.

“The parents start crying and say, ‘You just made my day for my kid. I’m going through so much,’” Tenyani said of the emotional exchange. “They cry and grab me and I start crying.”

Tenyani said she starts thinking about next year and how to reach more kids as soon as the surprise gift-giving party is over. She plans to keep playing the role of Secret Santa for children for as long as she can.

“I feel so blessed to have this opportunity to serve these children,” Tenyani said today on “Good Morning America.” “As long as I live I’ll be continuing serving these children.”

Tenyani’s hope is that others are inspired by her generous holiday act.

“You have to look out for others,” she said. “And whatever you have, the little you have, you can share. You make a difference to other people, you make a big difference.”

Surprise for Tenyani

ust moments after handing out presents today to patients at Advocate, Tenyani got a surprise herself.

Toys “R” Us donated $5,000 so Tenyani can keep buying presents for more children in need. “GMA” then presented Tenyani with a gift certificate for pampering at a local spa.

“I am so excited,” Tenyani said. “Thank you so much. It’s wonderful.”

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New CDC Study Finds Zika-Linked Birth Deficits in Approximately 6% Of Pregnancies

iStock/Thinkstock(ATLANTA) — A new study released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Tuesday evening provides the most comprehensive look to date at the ways in which the Zika virus is affecting women infected during pregnancy who delivered in the United States.

Out of a study of 446 pregnant women infected with Zika, about 6 percent of all completed pregnancies had babies or fetuses with birth defects potentially linked to the virus, consistent with previous modeling estimates. That number jumps to 11 percent when only including women who were infected in their first trimesters.

The birth defects linked to Zika include brain abnormalities with or without microcephaly (smaller than average heads) and serious nervous system deficits.

“The findings in this report emphasize the need for pregnant women to avoid travel to areas with active Zika virus transmission and consistently and correctly use condoms to prevent sexual transmission throughout pregnancy if their partner has recently traveled to an area of active Zika virus transmission,” the study concluded.

The most common symptoms of Zika virus infection are fever, rash, joint pain and conjunctivitis, but the study noted that many people experience no symptoms at all. Women were found to be just as likely to have children with birth defects whether or not they experienced symptoms during their pregnancies.

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Woman Shares Her Journey from Fitness Competitor to Cancer Fighter: ‘I’m Learning to Love Myself Again’

Cheyann Shaw/Instagram(NEW YORK) — Cheyann Shaw, 23, has been documenting her journey from bikini fitness competitor to cancer fighter on social media to help raise awareness about the disease and to inspire others facing their own difficult battles.

A photo recently posted to Instagram — showing what Shaw’s body looked like before and after cancer — appears to have particularly struck a chord with social media users, garnering nearly half a million likes.

The photo on the left highlights Shaw’s body before she knew she had cancer, while the photo on the right captures her post-cancer body after “almost 14 days in the hospital, a poop bag and a major surgery,” according to the photo’s caption.

“I’m learning to love myself again,” Shaw wrote on Instagram. “I will never stop fighting. I will never lose my faith. I will never let cancer win.”

Shaw told ABC News Tuesday that it has been quite the “struggle” watching her body and life change so drastically after being diagnosed with cancer this past August.

However, the 23-year-old noted that documenting her journey so far has helped her find the beauty in the midst of pain.

“I found a new me that I never knew existed,” Shaw said. “I do have my moments where I cry and break down, but once I am done, I look around and realize I am blessed to have another day and have the ability to help others.”

Shaw told ABC News that she has had multiple surgeries and chemotherapy in just the past four months. Though they have taken their toll on her, Shaw said she remains confident that she will be cancer-free soon.

“My biggest message to everyone is to never give up and never stop fighting,” she said. “Never lose your faith and keep pushing.”

Shaw added that she also wants to help raise awareness about the importance of early detection.

If “something feels off, go get checked,” she said. “I am glad I went when I did because if I waited any longer, I might not be here today.”

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Founder of CorePower Yoga Trevor Tice Found Dead Under ‘Suspicious Circumstances’ in California, Police Say

iStock/Thinkstock(SAN DIEGO) — The founder of CorePower Yoga was found dead under “suspicious circumstances” in a San Diego, California home.

The San Diego Police Department said it received a call for a welfare check at a home on Monday at about 12:15 p.m. Responding officers found a man identified as Trevor Tice dead inside the home, police said.

“Due to suspicious circumstances related to the death,” the case is being investigated by homicide detectives, the police said.

Police did not release the cause of death.

A representative from CorePower Yoga said in a statement to ABC News: “We are deeply saddened to confirm that our CorePower Yoga founder, Trevor Tice, passed away on Monday, Dec. 12, 2016. No further details are available about the cause of death. Our CorePower Yoga community and executive team will not be providing media comment. Our community is grieving this tragic loss and honoring Trevor’s tremendous legacy.”

CorePower Yoga has locations across the country, in 20 states and Washington D.C., according to its website.

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Inside the Controversial President of the Philippines’ War on Drugs That Has Left Thousands Dead

iStock/Thinkstock(MANILA, Philippines) — In the Philippines, President Rodrigo Duterte has been called the Donald Trump of the East. He rose to fame on a wave of populist discontent and a promise to crack down on drugs.

But behind Duterte’s populist platform, there is a dark, open secret — he has called on police and citizens to kill drug dealers and users on sight.

“Do it yourself if you have the gun, you have my support,” he told supporters at his victory party in June.

Just five months after Duterte took office, the capital city of Manila was reeling from thousands of murders.

“You really feel that something is changing,” said local photojournalist Raffy Lerma. “Sometimes, it’s just a dead body for me. Sometimes, you get affected, especially if there’s family.”

Lerma is what’s known as a “night crawler.” He documents the killings that happen across the area for The Philippine Daily Inquirer. He has sources all over who call his cell phone and tip him off when there’s another dead body. So far more than 5,800 people have been killed in the rampant violence since July 1, according to the Philippine National Police (PNP).

Duterte, while denying any knowledge of these murders, remains unapologetic. In a recent interview with Al Jazeera, he said, “You destroy my country, I kill you. It’s a legitimate thing. If you destroy our young children, I will kill you. That is a very correct statement.”

And his approval rating remains sky-high.

Risa Hontiveros, a senator in the Philippines, is a vocal opponent of Duterte’s war on drugs and is critical of his use of the PNP.

“It’s shocking for me that it somehow remains either popular or accepted or unchallenged by a larger part of our people,” Hontiveros said.

John Nery, the editor-in-chief of, the country’s largest newspaper website, sees the dangerous potential of Duterte’s words.

“The president has been very articulate and very repetitive. He said, ‘I am behind you. If you do your job … I will support you,'” Nery, said. “Some of the policemen receive this as a signal, ‘We can do what we want.’”

Police officers deny any involvement in extrajudicial killings.

“There have been deaths of suspects during police operations,” said Police Senior Superintendent Official Dionardo Carlos. “They have placed the lives of our police officers in dangers. … The police have no recourse but to defend themselves.”

In addition to the more than 2,000 killed in police operations for drug-related crimes, 3,800 have died at the hands of common criminals and apparent vigilantes, according to the PNP.

“There are cases of what they call now ‘the cardboard justice’ and there are cases wherein a victim was placed on the street with a cardboard saying, ‘I’m a pusher. I’m a drug addict,’ but these are cases that are still under investigation,” Carlos said.

ABC News spoke with a self-described vigilante who calls himself Johnnie. He gave a glimpse into what he says are the mechanics behind many of the killings.

“[For] example, if [I] plan to kill you, I know what time you’ll pass by, I’ll wait for you, after you pass by me then I’ll pull my gun and shoot you,” he said. “There’ll be no chance for you to draw your gun.”

Duterte’s rise to power began in Davao, one of the largest cities in the Philippines, where he served as mayor for nearly 30 years. He is still beloved there. Reverence to their leader has seeped into every aspect of daily life – his name and his image are ubiquitous across murals, souvenir stores and even on fruit at street stands.

Davao, once a crime-ridden city, is now considered one of the safest place in the Philippines. Critics say that’s because this is where Duterte first began legitimizing extrajudicial killings.

Edgar Matobato says he spent 25 years as part of the long-rumored Davao “Death Squad” – a band of volunteers who he says worked closely with police officers to clean up the city.

“I thought we’d be helping the good Filipinos, that we were only killing bad people,” he said through a translator.

Matobato claims Duterte ordered the killings.

“Our job was to kill the bad people he ordered us to,” he said. “Personally, I’ve killed almost 50.”

Matobato said he surrendered to the PNP in October after an arrest warrant was issued against him for failing to show up at a hearing on a gun possession charge. He then testified before the Filipino Senate and is now awaiting trial.

Matobato said he now fears for his life because he implicated Duterte in the killings. Duterte has denied knowing him.

“I know that they will kill me,” Matobato said.

The most popular drug in the Philippines is a form of crystal meth known as shabu. Drug suspects end up in the Quezon City Jail. One jail official said the facility’s ideal capacity is 800 inmates, but when ABC News was there, the official said there were 3,319.

The inmates are piled on top of each other, passing the days with cooking or working out, all waiting for their day in court, which for some can take years.

Many said they fear for their lives. “President Duterte’s administration will not stop hunting them [drug dealers],” one detainee said through a translator.

Local mayor Rolando Espinosa, whom Duterte accused of being a drug lord, was killed in jail.

“He actually had surrendered,” John Nery, the editor-in-chief of, said. “In fact, he was in jail, and yet, at 4 in the morning, he was served a search warrant and was supposed to have engaged in a firefight.”

When ABC News asked the PNP at a press conference about Espinosa’s death and another politician gunned down by police, the officer said they were still awaiting details of the investigation.

But the NBI, federal investigators that are the Philippines’ equivalent to the FBI, issued a report saying Espinosa was assassinated by the police.

Still, last week in a speech, Duterte said he would not allow the officers accused of assassinating Espinosa to go to prison, “Even if the NBI says it was murder.”

It’s been almost six months since Duterte’s drug crackdown was launched, but the long-term impact is still unclear.

“The big time pushers, the real drug lords. … They are armed in the same way,” Hontiveros said. “They have similar money…. They’ve always survived and come out even winning afterward on drugs. We create more victims, traumatized survivors and bereaved families.”

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