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ANCHOR LEAD: AWARENESS OF SALT IN PRESCRIPTION MEDICATIONS MUST START WITH HEALTHCARE PROVIDERS, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS

How much salt is in those prescription medications you take? It’s very unlikely a consumer would know, but even physicians and other caregivers aren’t aware of salt content. Now a recent study in the Lancet points to these salt containing medications as a risk factor for death. Lawrence Appel, a salt and diet expert at Johns Hopkins, says the key to solving this problem is awareness. [click to continue…]

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ANCHOR LEAD: TOO MUCH SALT MAY BE THE CULPRIT WHEN IT COMES TO HOLIDAY WEIGHT GAIN, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS

Many people report weight gains in the five to ten pound range over the holiday period, no doubt contributing to New Year’s resolutions to join a gym. Lawrence Appel, a salt and diet expert at Johns Hopkins, says his research points to salt, not calories, as the culprit.
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ANCHOR LEAD: PRESCRIPTION MEDICATIONS CONTAINING SODIUM HAVE BEEN ASSOCIATED WITH AN INCREASED RATE OF DEATH, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS

Did you know that many prescription drugs contain large amounts of sodium? A recent study in the Lancet showed that these formulations are also associated with an increased risk of death. Lawrence Appel, a salt and diet expert at Johns Hopkins, describes the study.

APPEL: Individuals who were prescribed a sodium containing product were compared to individuals who didn’t have a sodium containing product and there were worse outcomes in the people who had the sodium containing products. As part of the study of course they tried to account for other factors, it might be that these people were sicker beforehand. They adjusted for all of these variables and it still persisted in the end. It was probably the first major study of its kind, its consistent with what we know, which is that higher sodium raises blood pressure, probably has bad outcomes. :31

So ask your healthcare provider or pharmacist about sodium in medications. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.

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ANCHOR LEAD: SKIN ULCERS ARE MORE TROUBLESOME THAN YOU MAY THINK, AND NO ONE REALLY KNOWS THE BEST WAY TO TREAT THEM, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS

Ulcers that appear on the skin can be a big problem, sometimes persisting for long periods of time and resisting treatment, causing those who have them to become socially isolated, depressed, and at risk for complications. Gerald Lazarus, an ulcer expert at Johns Hopkins and colleagues, have recently completed a look at the research on treating ulcers and found it disappointing.

Ulcers that appear on the skin can be a big problem, sometimes persisting for long periods of time and resisting treatment, causing those who have them to become socially isolated, depressed, and at risk for complications. Gerald Lazarus, an ulcer expert at Johns Hopkins and colleagues, have recently completed a look at the research on treating ulcers and found it disappointing.

Lazarus says for people with chronic ulcers, seeking a multidisciplinary treatment team is best. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey

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This week’s topics include the controversy surrounding antibacterial soaps, new high blood pressure guidelines, an interaction between calcium channel blockers and clarithromycin, and no benefits to multivitamins.

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Related Article: Selecting Soap

 

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Michael Blaha, MD, MPH

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Linnea Zimmerman

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