News / 

Health tips

Estimated read time: 3-4 minutes

This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.

Dec 14, 2004 (United Press International via COMTEX) -- NEW TREATMENT FOR OVERACTIVE BLADDER

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the drug Vesicare for treatment of overactive bladder, which affects 17 million Americans. In a 12-week study, researchers found Vesicare taken once a day reduced the number of incontinence episodes. In overactive bladder, the detrusor muscle contracts while the bladder is filling, rather than when the bladder is full, resulting in an urgent need to go to the bathroom and, for many, an involuntary loss of urine. "The approval of Vesicare is important because it offers patients a treatment with a favorable safety profile that reduces symptoms -- in particular the chance of accidental leaks," says Dr. Peter Sand, director of urogynecology at Northwestern University.


Instead of making your New Year's resolution in the post-Christmas bustle, wait until June when you can give it more thought, a St. Louis expert advises. Dr. Joan Lang, chair of psychiatry at the St. Louis University School of Medicine, prefers waiting until summer, when there is more time for relaxation and introspection. "We are motivated to plan something new when children get a break from school, many families take vacations, and we all seem to enjoy life at the more leisurely pace that summer brings," Lang says. She notes people who keep their resolves take the time to figure out the one thing they really want to accomplish, then spell out a concrete plan of action with specific steps to achieve their goal. That may be a tall order in the wake of all the holiday excitement, Lang says.


You may kiss your sweetheart under the mistletoe, just make sure you don't get any of the plant in your mouth, a Tennessee expert cautions. Tom Hemmerly, biology professor at Middle Tennessee State University, says American mistletoe is not deadly, but some cases of illness have been reported in those who ingest it. "For safety sake, mistletoe should be kept out of the reach of small children," he advises. Mistletoe is a partial parasite, extracting water and minerals from the host, he notes. There are several species, including the European variety on which many Christmas mistletoe myths are based.


A University of South Florida sociologist says holiday shoppers should consider alternative gift strategies that avoid wasting time, money and emotion. Women in particular, tend to exert much energy and emotion into Christmas shopping for family, friends, colleagues, the mail carrier and other acquaintances, says Laurel Graham, who has conducted research on women's consumer behavior. She says finding the perfect gift or the hot toy of the season may come at too high a price, including that of emotional stress. She says there are ways to avoid wasteful holiday gift giving by being creative and considering alternative ideas to fighting the crowds at the mall. Some options may be giving something home-made or taking the loved one out to dinner or concert.

(Editors: For more information about BLADDER, contact Emily Voelker at (212) 819-4856 or For RESOLUTIONS, Nancy Solomon at (314) 977-8017. For KISS, Tom Hemmerly at (615) 898-2066 or For SHOP, Laurel Graham at (813) 974-2634 or

Copyright 2004 by United Press International.


Catch up on the top news and features from, sent weekly.
By subscribing, you acknowledge and agree to's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

KSL Weather Forecast