Weekly health roundup – 13th March

International health news

Researchers have suggested that taking hayfever tablets could increase the risk of male infertility. Men should consider reducing the amount of these antihistamines when wanting to try for a baby.

A study has shown that the anti-cholesterol drug Praluent may lower the risk of cardiovascular events by 15%. This drug, which is injected into patients every two to four weeks, may work better than statins which is the current treatment for high cholesterol.  

Country updates

As the economic crisis in Venezuela becomes even worse, many citizens are fleeing to Colombia to get access to medical treatments that Venezuelan hospitals can no longer provide. Health officials say that Venezuelans made up nearly 25,000 visits to Colombian emergency rooms last year.

Reports have found that there were 723 confirmed cases of yellow fever in Brazil including 237 deaths between July 2017 and February 2018. This number was far higher than the year before and the increase is likely due to the spread of the disease in areas of the country with highly concentrated populations.

Health advice

A recent study on mice has found that vitamin D may prevent heart failure after a heart attack. This could be a low-cost addition to treatments that are currently available.

A new study has shown that some 80-year-olds have the immune systems of 20-year-olds if they carried out lots of exercise. The researchers believe that being physically active in old age will help people better respond to vaccines.