Monthly Archives: May 2011

A spoonful of… POLYPILL. The results of first world trial go public.

The results of the first POLYPILL trial have just been released in Plos One showing that the pill alone is able to halve the predicted risk of heart disease and stroke. The study was a randomised, double-blind placebo-controlled trial of a polypill in 378 individuals in different countries (UK, Australia, New Zealand, India, Brazil, USA, and the Netherlands). The drugs contained in the polypill (aspirin, lisinopril, hydrochlorothiazide, and simvastatin) are currently prescribed separately to millions of patients and are known individually to cut the risk of disease, but many experts believe that combining them into a single pill will encourage people to take the medications more reliably. The whole polypill concept also emphasizes the shift of medicine towards prevention, instead of action. With a spoonful of sugar, the polypill goes down, the polypill goes down, the polypill goes down… Continue reading

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Complete ban on smoking in public spaces goes effective in NYC.

On May 23, smoking in any New York City park, beach, or pedestrian mall became illegal. The city council passed the ban last fall by a vote of 36 to 12, rejecting a compromise proposal that small areas remain available … Continue reading

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IAAF releases new rules for women with hyperandrogenism to compete in the Olympics.

A new international rule that determines whether certain female athletes can compete in the 2012 London Olympics and beyond has just gone into effect. After a lengthy review, the International Association of Athletics Federations and the International Olympic Committee have decided that female athletes with unusually high androgen levels, a condition known as hyperandrogenism, will be banned from competition unless they undergo surgery or take drugs to lower their testosterone levels.
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Opinion: When gender isn’t a given

By Silvia Camporesi and Katrina Karkazis

Special to the Mercury News
Posted: 05/22/2011 08:00:00 PM PDT
Updated: 05/23/2011 02:15:55 PM PDT

A new international rule that determines whether certain female athletes can compete in the 2012 London Olympics and beyond has just gone into effect. After a lengthy review, the International Association of Athletics Federations and the International Olympic Committee have decided that female athletes with unusually high androgen levels, a condition known as hyperandrogenism, will be banned from competition unless they undergo surgery or take drugs to lower their testosterone levels.

This new policy comes as a response to Caster Semenya, the South African runner whose gender was called into question by fellow athletes in 2009. Continue reading

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