HEALTH

Sabre: Travelers may not be alarmed by swine flu outbreak

BY Michael Johnsen

SOUTHLAKE, Texas Business and leisure travelers are continuing to travel despite growing attention surrounding the H1N1 virus (swine flu), indicating that travelers are not reacting with as much alarm as media reports may indicate, Sabre Holdings stated Friday.

Travel volumes recorded at Sabre Holdings show that aside from the decline in travel to Mexico, business and leisure travel within the United States and to other parts of the world is currently holding steady, reflecting the same pragmatic perspective among travelers that President Barack Obama offered in his news conference on Wednesday.

Travel agencies show similar findings with their clients.

“The vast majority of our clients remain on the road,” stated Jane Batio, president of CorpTrav, a Chicago-based travel management company with more than $180 million in annual air bookings. “We’ve only cancelled six trips across our entire client base in the past week, and future bookings remain in sync with rebounding trends we’ve seen across the past two months.”

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Nature & Health Co. announces voluntary, natiowide recall

BY Michael Johnsen

BREA, Calif. Nature & Health Co. on Tuesday announced that it is conducting a voluntary nationwide recall of the company’s supplement product sold under the name Libimax after being informed by representatives of the Food and Drug Administration that Libimax samples could contain tadalafil, the active ingredient in Lilly’s prescription-only erectile dysfunction drug Cialis.

The product is distributed through vitamin stores, grocery stores and liquor stores, according to the company’s Web site.

FDA advised that this poses a threat to consumers because tadalafil may interact with nitrates found in some prescription drugs (such as nitroglycerin) and may lower blood pressure to dangerous levels. According to the FDA, consumers with diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol or heart disease often take nitrates.

FDA advises that ED is a common problem in men with these conditions, and they may seek products to enhance sexual performance. FDA advises that tadalafil, may cause side effects, such as headaches and flushing.

The recalled Libimax is sold as a 1 capsule individual pack or 10-capsule and 20-capsule plastic bottles in retail stores in California, Georgia, Illinois, Texas and Ohio.  The product label neither states it contains tadalafil nor warns consumers with high blood pressure not to ingest the product.

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CDC updates swine flu count

BY Michael Johnsen

ATLANTA The number of confirmed swine flu cases in the United States now totals 109, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stated in an update released Thursday morning. South Carolina has added 10 cases to the tally, brining the number of states affected to 11.

The state-by-state count so far includes Arizona (1), California (14), Indiana (1), Kansas (2), Massachusetts (2), Michigan (1), Nevada (1), New York (50), Ohio (1), South Carolina (10) and Texas (26), with one confirmed swine flu death in Texas.

“In response to an intensifying outbreak in the United States and internationally caused by a new influenza virus of swine origin, the World Health Organization raised the worldwide pandemic alert level to Phase 5 on April 29, 2009,” the CDC stated. A Phase 5 alert is a “strong signal that a pandemic is imminent and that the time to finalize the organization, communication and implementation of the planned mitigation measures is short.”

CDC’s Division of the Strategic National Stockpile continues to send antiviral drugs, personal protective equipment and respiratory protection devices to all 50 states and U.S. territories to help them respond to the outbreak, the agency stated. The swine influenza A (H1N1) virus is susceptible to the prescription antiviral drugs Tamiflu (oseltamivir) and Relenza (zanamivir).

In addition, the federal government and manufacturers have begun the process of developing a vaccine against this new virus, CDC stated.

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