Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Morning Drill: August 23, 2011

A collection of dentistry and health related links/comments for your day.

Dentist fined for failing to register X-ray machine

An Exeter Township dentist has been fined for not renewing registrations for his X-ray equipment or paying the associated fees since 2003, the Department of Environmental Protection said Monday.

Dr. Jon M. Kanegawa, who operates a clinic at 4400 Boyertown Pike, is required to pay $13,250 in penalties, according to the DEP.

Kanegawa could not be reached for comment.

DEP inspectors recently reviewed Kanegawa's equipment and determined it was working properly, the release said.

According to the DEP:

Newly acquired X-ray equipment must be registered with the DEP within 30 days. After that, the registration must be renewed each year.

The registration fee covers the cost of inspections.

This is not the first time Kanegawa was faced by the DEP over registration fees.

In 1995, he was fined $1,560 for not paying fees in a timely manner between 1989 and 1994.

He was then accused of not paying fees from that point through 2002. He paid a portion of those fees in 2006.
Falls From Windows Claiming Too Many Children's Lives
For more than 5,000 American children each year, an open window brings serious injury or even death, a new report finds.

And the younger the child, the bigger the odds that a tumble from a window will prove lethal. The study, done at the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, found that children under the age of five were more than three times as likely to die from head injuries sustained in window falls than children aged five to 17 years old.

And even though it's assumed that urban kids are at greatest risk, injuries from window falls occur "throughout the nation in urban and suburban areas," the study authors say.

"We have known for decades about the problem of children falling from windows," said Dr. Gary Smith, director of the center and an author of the study. "Despite the fact that we have known about it, we still have a problem."

Although falls from a window represent a small percentage of childhood mishaps, "they are preventable, and that's why we focus on them," said Smith.

The findings were published online Aug. 22 in the journal Pediatrics.

The 'heart attack proof' diet?

Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn Jr. didn't become a doctor to change the way America eats. He was a general surgeon.

But researching cancer, he stumbled on a fact that changed his career: Certain cultures around the world do not suffer from heart disease, the No. 1 killer in the Western world.

Esselstyn's practice took a dramatic turn -- from performing surgery to promoting nutrition. For more than 20 years, the Cleveland Clinic doctor has tried to get Americans to eat like the Papua New Guinea highlanders, rural Chinese, central Africans and the Tarahumara Indians of Mexico.

Follow his dietary prescription, the 77-year-old Esselstyn says, and you will be "heart attack proof" -- regardless of your family history.

"It's a foodborne illness, and we're never going to end the epidemic with stents, with bypasses, with the drugs, because none of it is treating causation of the illness," Esselstyn says.

The Esselstyn diet is tough for most Americans to swallow: no meat, no eggs, no dairy, no added oils.

Hip Implant Complaints Surge, Even as the Dangers Are Studied

The federal government has received a surge in complaints in recent months about failed hip replacements, suggesting that serious problems persist with some types of artificial hips even as researchers scramble to evaluate the health dangers.

An analysis of federal data by The New York Times indicates that the Food and Drug Administration has received more than 5,000 reports since January about several widely used devices known as metal-on-metal hips, more than the agency had received about those devices in the previous four years combined.

The vast majority of filings appear to reflect patients who have had an all-metal hip removed, or will soon undergo such a procedure because a device failed after only a few years; typically, replacement hips last 15 years or more.

The mounting complaints confirm what many experts have feared — that all-metal replacement hips are on a trajectory to become the biggest and most costly medical implant problem since Medtronic recalled a widely used heart device component in 2007. About 7,700 complaints have been filed in connection with that recall.

Though immediate problems with the hip implants are not life-threatening, some patients have suffered crippling injuries caused by tiny particles of cobalt and chromium that the metal devices shed as they wear.

Hip replacement is one of the most common procedures in the United States and, until a recent sharp decline, all-metal implants — one in which both the artificial ball and cup are made of metal — accounted for nearly one-third of the estimated 250,000 replacements performed each year. According to one estimate, some 500,000 patients have received an all-metal replacement hip.

Enjoy your morning!

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