Put the Bite on Zika Scams

With the start of the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro and peak mosquito season in much of the U.S., expect even more news about the Zika virus — ideal timing for frenzy-feeding fraudsters peddling scams such as: • Online offers for supposed miracle, dietary or natural products, or bogus personal-protection kits to prevent or cure Zika; • Emails with alarming messages touting must-read links that unleash computer viruses; • Investment opportunities from companies allegedly developing products to stop the spread …

What Is the Zika Virus Risk for Older Adults?

The severe birth defects in babies born to women suspected of having the Zika virus have received most of the attention about this disease in the news, but the virus also poses a risk to older adults. Researchers have been studying a link between the mosquito-borne virus and developing Guillain-Barre syndrome, a post-infection complication that can lead to temporary paralysis in adults. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently confirmed that link based on two U.S. cases of Guillain-Barre …

These Simple Exercises Could Help Preserve Brain Health

Want a cheap and easy way to improve your brain health? Try lifting weights a couple times a week. A new study adds to evidence that light strength training — also called resistance training — may be key to maintaining a healthy brain. Because of the way strength training pumps blood to the brain, some researchers now think it goes beyond the benefits of aerobic exercise and helps preserve brain health as we age. Teresa Liu-Ambrose and her colleagues at the University of British …

Young Adults: The New Face of Heroin Addiction

An epidemic of heroin addiction is spreading among young adults, yet for the most part, the problem remains hidden. Shamed parents, blaming themselves and wondering what they did wrong, struggle alone. As one  boomer mom told me, “No one wants to announce to family and friends that their son is a drug addict.” To publicize the problem of addiction, a “Stop the Silence” rally is planned for Sunday, Oct. 4, in Washington, D.C. Organizers from a new national organization, Facing …

CDC: Flu Shot Should Be Better This Season

En español | With flu season about to start, health officials reassured Americans that the new, updated flu vaccine now available should do a better job than last year’s. The 2014-15 flu season was particularly nasty, thanks to a major flu strain that changed after the vaccine had already been manufactured. As a result, last year’s vaccine was only 13 percent effective against the virulent H3N2 strain, causing the highest hospitalization rate among older adults that the Centers for Disease …

Why Did CDC Disability Report Exclude Hearing Loss?

Hearing loss is often referred to as a hidden disability, but one place it shouldn’t be invisible is in a government report on disability. That’s what happened last week when the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a report on the prevalence of disability in the United States. The report found that more than 53 million Americans — about 1 in 5 adults — live with a disability, which the CDC defined as having limited mobility, such as …