Thursday, October 25, 2012
1. Angina Angina, or chest pain caused by lack of blood flow to the heart, can feel a lot like heartburn. "The major key is if you're getting heartburn when you're doing strenuous or moderate activity," says Dr. Ryan Madanick, a gastroenterologist and assistant professor of medicine at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, in Chapel Hill. If you're 50 or older and getting heartburn—especially if you haven't had this kind of pain before—it can raise suspicion of angina. Suspicions can also be raised if you're younger but have heart risk factors such as hypertension, diabetes, or a family history of heart disease. 2. Gallstones Although gallstones don't always cause symptoms, a stone blocking your bile duct can hurt, usually in the middle or upper-right side of the abdomen. Pain may be cramping, dull, or sharp, and often strikes minutes after you eat. If you're experiencing stomach pain after meals that doesn't improve after you take an over-the-counter acid-suppressing medication, gallstones should be suspected, says Dr. Joel Richter, a gastroenterologist and chairman of the department of medicine at Temple University School of Medicine, in Philadelphia. 3. Stomach Ulcer Ulcers can cause a gnawing, burning sensation, usually felt in the upper abdomen. The pain can find its way up to the chest, Madanick says. Acid-suppressing medications may relieve ulcer pain. But ulcers are usually caused by Helicobacter pylori, a type of bacteria that inflames the stomach lining, so you will need to take antibiotics to clear the infection. Certain anti-inflammatory drugs (such as aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen), and osteoporosis drugs called bisphosphonates, can also cause stomach ulcers. 4. Hiatal Hernia A hiatal hernia occurs when a portion of the upper stomach pokes through the diaphragm into the chest cavity, rather than staying in the abdominal cavity where it belongs. This can push food and stomach acid up into the esophagus, causing heartburn. Other signs of hiatal hernia include chest pain, belching, and nausea. If you have heartburn due to hiatal hernia, your doctor will typically prescribe acid-suppressing drugs, and recommend lifestyle changes like eating smaller meals, avoiding alcohol, and not eating right before bed. In rare cases, surgical repair may be warranted. 5. Esophageal Cancer Esophageal cancer is rare, but its incidence is rising rapidly in the United States, Madanick says. "If you have heartburn, it might be a sign of esophageal cancer, but it's highly unlikely," he says. Your doctor may decide to order an upper endoscopy to examine your esophagus if you've got long-standing heartburn, especially if you smoke or drink heavily, both of which are risk factors for esophageal cancer. This test involves passing a tube with a light and a camera at one end down your throat into your esophagus. During the test, your doctor can look for abnormal areas as well as collect tissue samples to test for cancer.
Man, we are not having a good run with guns here in the U.S. A few weeks ago, we heard the story about the father who shot and killed his teenage son by mistake, thinking he was an intruder. Then, earlier on today, we read about how a teenager was accidentally shot while playing a prank on his friends. And now, because there apparently isn't enough depressing news in the world, I bring you the story of the 34-year-old boyfriend who fatally shot his girlfriend because he thought she was an intruder. Can we talk about gun control now? Before we get into it, here's the story: The man accidentally shot his girlfriend in the stomach yesterday at around 5:30 in the morning. He immediately called the police after he realized what happened, but it was too late. Look. There are people who like guns. I get that. Well, I don't really get that, but I understand it. Sort of. But shouldn't there be, I don't know, some stricter rules for possessing them? Really bad things keep happening. We've had a really bad run here in the past few months. In addition to these three horrific accidents, there was the shooting in Aurora (which I am NOT comparing to this!!!); the shooting at a grocery store in New Jersey; and just last night, a shooting in Portland. All involving guns. I know. Guns don't kill people; people kill people. But guns have been a part of all these tragedies. Clearly, they'll never be outlawed -- that would be ridiculous -- but perhaps some sort of stricter regulations should be instituted? One can't help but wonder if these things could have been prevented if that was the case. What do you think of this?
Authorities say a Mesa father has fatally shot a man who was beating up his son outside his family's home.
Mesa police say a fight broke out in the front yard of the home around 5:30 a.m. Monday.
Police say the homeowner came out of the house to see his son being attacked and fired a weapon at the person beating up his son.
Others involved took the victim to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
The names of the people involved haven't been released, but police say the son knew the attacker.
Police say it's still unclear what led to the fight and if any charges will be filed in the case pending an investigation.
Authorities have identified the body of a man who was found entombed in concrete in the backyard of a northeast Georgia home.
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation medical examiner's office said Friday that the man has been identified as 30-year-old Sean Dugas, who was a reporter in Pensacola, Fla. The body was found Monday encased in a plastic storage container filled with concrete.
Authorities say Christopher and William Cormier, 31-year-old twins, were charged this week with murder in the death of Dugas. The brothers are also charged with concealing death.
Winder, Ga., police officer Chris Cooper says medical examiners declared the death a homicide based on the number and location of the man's injuries.
Police say Dugas had been reported missing and was last heard from on Aug. 27.
Hurricane Sandy blasted across eastern Cuba on Thursday as a potent Category 2 storm and headed for the Bahamas after causing at least two deaths in the Caribbean.
The U.S. National Hurricane Center said Sandy had emerged of Cuba's northeast coast around dawn and was moving north at 18 mph, with maximum sustained winds of 105 mph. It was expected to remain a hurricane as it moves through the Bahamas.
The 18th named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season passed well west of the U.S. naval base at Cuba's Guantanamo Bay, where pretrial hearings were being held for a suspect in the deadly 2000 attack on the destroyer USS Cole off Yemen. But it intermittently knocked out power to some of the 5,500 people living on the base. Officials said there was no threat to the 166 prisoners.
The hurricane center said that Sandy would likely still be a hurricane as it passes over the Bahamas later in the day. It also might bring tropical storm conditions along the southeastern Florida coast, the Upper Keys and Florida Bay by Friday morning.
A tropical storm warning was extended northward as far as Flagler Beach and a tropical storm watch was issued for the northeastern Florida coast.
Cuba's communist government, known for its quick response to natural disasters, announced the evacuation of about 450 tourists from beach resorts near the eastern city of Santiago, according to Cuban state media, though hotel workers told The Associated Press they were not expecting any major problems.
Sandy "is a complex of strong rains, very intense," said civil defense Col. Miguel Angel Puig, adding that the rains could affect 200,000 people in Cuba.
The U.S. hurricane center had said Sandy is expected to produce total rainfall of 6 to 12 inches across Jamaica, Haiti, Dominican Republic and eastern Cuba.
"These rains may produce life-threatening flash floods and mud slides, especially in areas of mountainous terrain," the center said.
Eastern Cuba is mountainous and home to independent and state farms growing yucca, sugar, corn, coffee and fruit, among other crops.
Fishermen on the Gulf of Guaranayabo, where Manzanillo is located, moved their boats to safer ground.
In Santiago, Cuba's second-largest city, tourist hotels prepared by getting generators ready and closing off some outdoor spaces and pools, though there were no evacuations other than from the beach resorts.
"We're well prepared for the storm," said Mayte Cuesta, an employee of the Hotel Melia Santiago. "It will affect us, but we don't think there is any danger."
As Sandy crossed over Jamaica on Wednesday an elderly man was killed by a boulder that crashed into his clapboard house, police said. In southwestern Haiti, a woman died in the town of Camp Perrin after she was swept away by a river she was trying to cross, said Marie Alta Jean-Baptiste, head of the country's civil protection office.
Jamaican authorities closed the island's international airports and police ordered 48-hour curfews in major towns to keep people off the streets and deter looting. Cruise ships changed their itineraries to avoid the storm, which made landfall Wednesday afternoon near the capital, Kingston.
In some southern towns on Jamaica, rushing floodwaters carried crocodiles out of their habitat in mangrove thickets. One big croc took up temporary residence in a family's front yard in the city of Portmore.
Stranded business travelers and a smattering of locals rode out the hurricane in hotels clustered along a strip in Kingston's financial district. Some read prayer books or novels, while others watched movies or communicated with loved ones on computers.
Far out in the Atlantic, Tropical Storm Tony was weakening and posed no threat to land. The storm had maximum sustained winds of about 45 mph and was moving east-northeast at 23 mph. Its center was 835 miles west-southwest of the Azores.