‘Women’s Viagra’ Gets OK From FDA Committee

The first drug designed to boost a woman’s sex drive was given the green light Thursday by a government advisory panel, which recommended that the pill be approved by the Food and Drug Administration, but only with certain safety restrictions. The committee voted 18-6 in favor of approving the pill flibanserin for women on the condition that drugmaker Sprout Pharmaceuticals take measures to reduce the risk of its side effects. The FDA is expected to announce a final decision by …

Is the Era of Cheap Generic Drugs About to End?

En español | Prices for generic drugs most commonly used by older Americans fell by the smallest percentage since 2006, with 1 in 4 rising in price — some by more than 1,000 percent, according to a new report from AARP’s Public Policy Institute (PPI). The report looked at 2013 price trends for 280 generic prescription medications widely used by those age 50-plus. The majority of these generics saw price decreases, some of them substantial, but the overall decline slowed …

The Best Sunscreens You’re Not Using

Who’s better at using sunscreen lotion, men or women? Truthfully, they’re both pretty lousy at it, according to a new government study. Even sadder: New testing of sunscreen lotions finds you can’t always believe the claims on the label. A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) study found a paltry 14 percent of men and 30 percent of women reported that they regularly use sunscreen on both their face and other exposed skin. Women are better when it comes …

The Painkiller Sending Adults 55+ to the ER

En español | Tramadol, a prescription painkiller thought to be less risky than other narcotic pain meds, has caused a sharp spike in emergency room visits, especially among patients 55 or older, two new government reports have found. Tramadol is typically used for the management of moderate to severe pain, such as for after surgery and for ongoing pain from arthritis. It is the active ingredient in such brand name medications as Ultram, Ultracet, ConZip, Ryzolt and Rybix ODT. When …

Boomers, Here’s Your 10-Year Health Checkup

America’s boomers just got a 10-year health checkup, and the diagnosis is mixed: More are dealing with chronic conditions, especially high blood pressure and high cholesterol, but fewer are dying from cancer and heart disease, thanks to recent medical advances. Additionally, fewer are smoking and slightly more are exercising — a small dose of good news. The new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) finds that the number of Americans ages 55 to 64 who have …

Prepare for ‘Worst Allergy Season’ in Years

First we suffer through a long, record-setting winter, and now we find out it’s going to be a long, record-setting allergy season. May is National Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month — as if you couldn’t tell by all the sneezing and wheezing — and Tao Zheng, M.D., chief of the allergy and immunology section at the Yale University School of Medicine, predicts this allergy season “may be one of the worst in years,” she told Yale News. Why? A long, …