June 26, 2012 The global death toll from the swine flu pandemic may have been 15 times larger than previous estimates. Researchers tried to fill in gaps in places around the world where statistics on the illness were harder to come by.
June 22, 2012 The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention cites Rhode Island Hospital for fast work in stamping out a dangerous antibiotic-resistant germ. But federal officials are concerned the next time might not go as well. They're asking U.S. hospitals to be alert to the threat.
June 21, 2012 The research paper, which has been under scrutiny for months, publishes the recipe for a potential pandemic: It shows how just a handful of genetic mutations in the bird flu virus H5N1 allow it to spread between ferrets — the lab stand-in for people — through coughs and sneezes.
June 21, 2012 Here's a hint: Compare the number of scientific papers on a disease with the number of people affected by the illness. There's lots of research on diabetes and not so much on elephantiasis.
June 18, 2012 Researchers have found two very different cholera strains in some of the first Haitians to be struck by the disease. The findings suggest that cholera germs may have been lurking undetected in Haiti for a long time.
June 11, 2012 Some 338 people have been infected with whooping cough in Oregon this year. But that's just a small fraction of the number of cases the state of Washington is reporting. Health experts say the booster shot is not 100 percent effective at preventing the disease, but people who have it are far less likely to get sick.
June 6, 2012 More than 10 percent of the new cases of tuberculosis diagnosed in China each year are resistant to the mainstay drugs used to treat the illness. The sobering findings come from the first national survey of the disease conducted there.
June 4, 2012 Among advocates for improving sanitation through better toilet access, the only question is whether to play it straight or joke about the john. Pretty much everyone seems to give in to humor.
May 25, 2012 Jet injectors have been delivering drugs and vaccines without needles since the Star Trek era, but never caught on widely in real-world medicine. A device developed at MIT promises to change that, with computer-controlled precision and an injection as inconspicuous as a mosquito's jab.
May 24, 2012 Afghanistan, Nigeria and Pakistan are the only three countries left where poliovirus remains endemic. But work to put the paralyzing virus on the ropes there is in danger of failing. The setbacks have spurred a renewed focus on defeating the disease.
May 23, 2012 Clostridium difficile is a nasty bacterial infection that used to strike mainly older hospitalized patients taking antibiotics. In findings presented at a conference this week, Mayo Clinic researchers say it's now cropping up in communities, and infecting children.
May 22, 2012 From 20 to 42 percent of the malaria medicines examined in Southeast Asia and sub-Saharan Africa were crummy or counterfeit. The poor quality of the medicines threatens people's health and raises the odds for drug-resistant disease.
May 18, 2012 The Wisconsin Division of Public Health noticed a strange uptick in hepatitis C to 24 cases a year recently, from eight, or so, earlier. Some of the infections were bad enough to cause people to seek treatment in emergency rooms. An investigation revealed many cases were linked to drug abuse.
May 18, 2012 More than 2 million baby boomers in the U.S. are thought to be infected with hepatitis C. But most don't know it. So the federal government is proposing they get blood test for the virus. The current guidelines call for a test only when someone is known to be at risk.