HEALTH

Study finds link between vitamin D deficiency, bacterial vaginosis

BY Michael Johnsen

BETHESDA, Md. There may be a link between vitamin D deficiency and bacterial vaginosis, a vaginal infection that is common among pregnant women and can lead to complications.

According to data to be published in the June 2009 issue of the Journal of Nutrition, researchers tracking 469 pregnant women found that 41% of those women had BV, and that the prevalence of BV decreased as vitamin D concentration increased.

Researchers concluded that vitamin D insufficiency is associated with BV in the first four months of pregnancy. Further, poor vitamin D status may contribute to the strong racial disparity in the prevalence of BV in U.S. women. Controlled intervention trials will be needed to confirm this hypothesis, the researchers suggested.

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SDI launches iPhone, iPod application for allergy sufferers

BY Michael Johnsen

PLYMOUTH MEETING, Pa. SDI on Wednesday launched Pollen.com Allergy Alert, an application for iPhone and iPod Touch devices that provides one-day alerts and four-day forecasts for four conditions — allergy (pollen), asthma, cold-cough and ultraviolet sensitivity — through its popular allergy site.

“The iPhone application provides users with greater access to information that they’ve come to rely on from Pollen.com,” stated Glenn Connery, associate director of the application development/Web group for SDI, the company behind Pollen.com. “Having this instant, portable access for their conditions helps users plan their day or week ahead.”

 

In addition to the one-day alerts and four-day forecasts by zip code, the features of the Pollen.com Allergy Alert iPhone application include:

  • Indexes indicating severity for each condition ranging from 0.0 to 12.0;
  • Easy-to-read user interface with color-coding for easy focus; and
  • Access to the Allergy Alert application support page on Pollen.com

The application is available for free at the iPhone App Store, SDI stated.

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Schering-Plough rolls out new antifungal spray

BY Michael Johnsen

KENILWORTH, N.J. Schering-Plough Consumer Healthcare on Tuesday launched Tinactin Chill, an antifungal spray for the treatment of athlete’s foot.

The new antifungal is available in two formulations, liquid spray and deodorant powder spray.

With the product launch, Schering-Plough is targeting first time athlete’s foot sufferers, which are primarily young males ages 14 to 22.

“Research shows that experiencing athlete’s foot for the first time can be very frightening and intimidating for young men,” stated John O’Mullane, group VP, research and development, Schering-Plough  Consumer Healthcare. “Our research indicated that to reach this age group we would need to go beyond the traditional methods of communication with our customers.”

Accordingly, Schering-Plough developed www.meettheburns.com, a site that features a series of “Webisodes” highlighting the fictitious Burns family and a character named “Gus” representing fungus. Each segment presents an athlete’s foot treatment message in a situation comedy style that is entertaining and identifies well with teens.

“Many young men are reluctant to talk about their situation when they first experience athlete’s foot,” O’Mullane said. “However, they often seek information on the Internet. By developing this Web site, we can reach young men and help inform them and their parents that there are effective and easy to use treatments for this common condition.”

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