Health

Vital Signs: Alzheimer's Research; the World's Oldest Living Twins

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The latest facts and figures from the all of the most influential medical journals; newspapers; and health, fitness, and wellness websites.

  • 130,000,000 -- The amount, in dollars, that the Obama administration is designating in extra funding for Alzheimer's research over the next two years. Source: "A.M. Vitals: Room for Compromise on Contraception Coverage?" the Wall Street Journal.
  • 450,000,000 -- The amount, in dollars, that the National Institutes of Health (NIH) already spends on Alzheimer's research every year, according to Kaiser Health News. Source: "A.M. Vitals: Room for Compromise on Contraception Coverage?" the Wall Street Journal.
  • 102 -- The age of Edith Ritchie and Evelyn "Evie" Middleton, the oldest living twins, according to the Guinness World Records. Between the two of them, they have eight children, 21 grandchildren, 47 great-grandchildren, and six great-great grandchildren. Source: "World's Oldest Twins Are 102-Year-Old Scottish Sisters, Says Guinness World Records," CBS.
  • 35 -- The percent that happy people are less likely to die an early death, according to a November 2011 British study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Source: "World's Oldest Twins Are 102-Year-Old Scottish Sisters, Says Guinness World Records," CBS.
  • 15 -- The average number of years that women who exercised at least 30 minutes every day, avoided obesity and smoking, and stuck to a Mediterranean diet lived longer than those who did none of those things. Source: "World's Oldest Twins Are 102-Year-Old Scottish Sisters, Says Guinness World Records," CBS.
  • 1,081 -- The number of calories in the new bacon milkshake from Jack in the Box, which is made with no actual bacon, just bacon-flavored syrup, vanilla ice cream, whipped topping, and a maraschino cherry. Source: "Are You Ready for the 1,081-Calorie Bacon Milkshake?" the Los Angeles Times.
  • 15.52 -- The weight, in pounds, of a baby born this past week in central China. Chun Chun, born to a 29-year-old mother in Henan province, is possibly the largest newborn on record since the country was founded in 1949. The delivery took just 20 minutes. Source: "Chinese Mom Gives Birth to 15-Pound Baby," CBS.
  • 23.7 -- The weight, in pounds, of the heaviest newborn ever recorded, according to Guinness World Records. The baby was born to an Ohio woman in 1879. Source: "Chinese Mom Gives Birth to 15-Pound Baby," CBS.
  • 40,000,000 -- The amount, in dollars, that federal health officials have promised in grants to help reduce the rising number of preterm births and early elective deliveries. Source: "New Initiatives Targets Premium Births/Elective Deliveries," CNN.
  • 36 -- The percent that premature births have climbed over the last 20 years, according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Source: "New Initiatives Targets Premium Births/Elective Deliveries," CNN.
  • 20,000 -- The average amount spent, in dollars, on medical care during the first year of a premature baby's life. The average for a full-term baby is just $2,100. Source: "New Initiatives Targets Premium Births/Elective Deliveries," CNN.
  • 409,500 -- The out-of-pocket cost for a year of Soliris, the world's most expensive drug, according to Forbes magazine. Soliris is used to treat a rare blood disease known as paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria. Source: "The 11 Most Expensive Medications," Harvard Health Blog.
  • 200,000 -- The estimated number of people who die around the world from measles, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Source: "Measles Cases Found After Super Bowl Festivities," CNN.
  • 7 -- The percentage of young women between the ages of 15 and 19 that became pregnant in the United States in 2008, according to researchers at the Guttmacher Institute. That works out to 67.8 pregnancies per 1,000 women. Source: "Teen Pregnancy Rates Hit 40 Year Low," CNN.
  • 47 -- The percentage of obese people who were told by their doctors to exercise, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Source: "About One-Third of Patients Told by Doctors to Exercise," the Los Angeles Times.
  • 22.6 -- The percentage of healthy weight people who were told by their doctors to exercise, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Source: "About One-Third of Patients Told by Doctors to Exercise," the Los Angeles Times.
  • 4,500,000 -- The approximate number of people in the United States walking around with false knees, according to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Source: "4.5 Million People in the U.S. Have Knee Replacements," the Los Angeles Times.
  • 1,700,000 -- The number of people who experience traumatic brain injury (TBI) annually in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) The condition ranges in severity from long-term damage resulting in coma to mild concussions. Source: "Doctor: 'The Vow' Shows Our Brains Are Stranger Than Fiction," CNN.
  • 13,000,000 -- The approximate number of Americans who suffer from seasonal affective disorder (SAD). Source: "New Fitness Class 'Sheds Light' on Combating Winter Blues," Fox News.
  • 24,000 -- The minimum number of people in El Salvador and Nicaragua who have died from a mysterious epidemic since 2000. The disease stops the kidneys from functioning properly, filling the body with toxins that lead to cramps, headaches, and vomiting. Source: "Mystery Epidemic Devastates Central American Region," the Associated Press.
  • 1,047 -- The number of people in Nicaragua who died from chronic kidney disease in 2010, according to the Pan American Health Organization, a regional arm of the World Health Organization. That's more than double the 466 deaths in 2000. Source: "Mystery Epidemic Devastates Central American Region," the Associated Press.
  • 2,181 -- The number of people in El Salvador who died from chronic kidney disease in 2010, according to the Pan American Health Organization, a regional arm of the World Health Organization. That's more than double the 1,282 deaths in 2000. Source: "Mystery Epidemic Devastates Central American Region," the Associated Press.
  • 40,000,000 -- The approximate number of Americans who suffer from seasonal allergies. Source: "It's Not Just You -- Seasonal Allergies Hitting Early, Hard," MSNBC.

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