1987 Dodge Van hangs off Rock overhang near Grand Junction, CO, after failed suicide attempt (27 suicide attempts at Colorado National Monument last year.)

This Wednesday, Jan. 21, 2009 photograph provided by the Colorado National Monument shows a 1987 Dodge van that got stuck on a rock overhang , near Grand Junction, Colo., after the driver sent the vehicle off a cliff in an apparent suicide attempt. The 34-year-old male driver survived the incident. But park officials said that 27 people attempted suicide at the national monument last year, which has prompted administrators to train staff at entrances and visitor centers in suicide prevention.

Birth of Octuplets shocks medical experts in California today.

“When we see something like this in the general fertility world, it gives us the heebie jeebies,” said Michael Tucker, a clinical embryologist in Atlanta and a leading researcher in infertility treatment. Tucker added that in his opinion, “if a medical practitioner had anything to do with it, there’s some degree of inappropriate medical therapy there.”

The parents of the octuplets have not been identified, and Kaiser officials say they have not been authorized to release information to the public on how the babies were conceived.
Doctors reported Tuesday that the eight babies, six boys and two girls, are doing fine. The babies were delivered by caesarean section Monday and ranged in weight from 1 pound, 8 ounces to 3 pounds, 4 ounces.

“The babies had a very good night,” (click to read entire article)

said Dr. Mandhir Gupta, a neonatologist at Kaiser Permanente Bellflower Medical Center. The babies are stable and the two who were receiving help breathing had their breathing tubes removed Tuesday morning. They began feeding as well.

“They’re doing amazingly well,” Gupta said.

Despite that hopeful report, however, higher-order multiple births (defined as three or more babies born together) are dangerous for babies and the mother. Infants born prematurely face the risk of breathing problems and brain injuries that may cause permanent disability. Problems in premature babies, including learning disabilities or cognitive delays, are often not apparent until years after their birth.

The American Society for Reproductive Medicine and American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists say “doctors should be making efforts to curb these higher-order multiple gestations,” said Dr. Geeta Swamy, an assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Duke University. “But it really is still up to the individual physician. There aren’t any laws or legal ramifications to it.”

Peanut Processor found salmonella on 12 occasions, shipped product anyway (resulting in 501 poisonings and 8 deaths in 43 states)

The government Tuesday accused the peanut butter manufacturer tied to a nationwide salmonella outbreak of shipping products in 2007 and 2008 after internal tests found bacterial contamination, violating food safety regulations. Peanut butter and peanut paste manufactured by the Peanut Corp. of America (PCA) has been tied to the salmonella outbreak that has sickened 501 people in 43 states and is believed to have contributed to eight deaths. The Food and Drug Administration said that its inspection of the PCA plant in Blakely, Ga., found records of 12 instances in which plant officials identified salmonella in ingredients or finished products. The products should not have been shipped, the FDA says. PCA took no steps to address cleaning after finding the salmonella, says Michael Rogers, director of the FDA’s division of field investigations. In some instances, the company had the product tested again by a different laboratory and got a clean test result, FDA officials said in a telephone conference with reporters. It’s quite possible that a retest would miss the salmonella, says Michael Doyle, director of the University of Georgia’s Center for Food Safety. The product should have been destroyed after the first positive test result, he says.