Latest health news

Researchers give type 1 diabetics new hope

Bridie Smith 1:33 PM   Researchers have worked out what makes the body attack its insulin-producing cells, causing type 1 diabetes.

University of Canberra starts company to develop new cancer treatment

Professor Sudha Rao.

Alexandra Back   University of Canberra researchers hope to develop a new treatment aimed at preventing the spread of cancer within the body with the launch of a new company.

Organ donation chief departs as donation rate improves

Yael Cass, the former CEO of the Organ and Tissue Authority.

Harriet Alexander   The chief executive officer of the Organ and Tissue Authority (OTA) has quietly vacated her position following a controversial probe into the rate of organ donation in Australia that largely vindicated her performance.

Leafy greens linked with salmonella exported to Asia

One of the Coles salads included in the recall.

Esther Han   Australian leafy greens, linked with a growing salmonella outbreak, may have been exported to Singapore, Thailand and Hong Kong.

Why sex matters in science

The under-representation of female mice in animal trials could have dramatic implications.

Bridie Smith   Female participation in scientific research needs to increase dramatically, if discoveries are to benefit all of humanity. It's a familiar theme. But this time, there's a twist.

Whooping cough cases quadruple in NSW

A severe whooping cough season has prompted a vaccine supply shortage.

Harriet Alexander   More than 12,000 notifications as vaccine stocks in the private market run dry.

Potential measles outbreak in Brunswick

The measles rash on the face of a child.

Liam Mannix, Marissa Calligeros   Four people living in the Brunswick area have contracted the disease.

Scientists uncover the brain mechanism that makes you sigh

Sighing: It's a life-saver.

Rachel Feltman   You probably haven't given them much thought, but it's actually a life-saving reflex.

The prostate wars: Patients charged more than $30,000 for treatment

Treatment options differ: Patients face a confusing array of choices when diagnosed with prostate cancer.

Harriet Alexander   Men who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer face a confusing array of treatment choices, each with its own price tag and idiosyncratic side effects.

Human trials for Australian-made bionic spine to start next year

Biomedical engineer Nick Opie is part of the team working on the 'bionic spine'.

Bridie Smith   Patients left paralysed by injury or illness could be back on their feet again, thanks to a breakthrough by Melbourne researchers who have designed a revolutionary bionic spine.

Lite n' Easy warns customers not to eat salad in its meals over salmonella scare

One of the Coles salads included in the recall.

Esther Han   Lite n' Easy has warned its customers to not eat the salad component of meals delivered this week because it may be contaminated with salmonella.

Woman finds big, alive spider in Woolworths salad mix

A huntsman at Taronga Zoo.

It appears salmonella might not be the only thing you could catch yourself finding in lettuce and salad mixes.

Salmonella outbreak linked to Coles and Woolworths lettuce

One of the Coles salads included in the recall.

An urgent national recall has been issued for pre-packaged lettuce that is linked to a salmonella outbreak.

Natural-born killers: mosquito-borne diseases

A female Aedes aegypti mosquito

Marcus Strom   Mosquitoes are responsible for the death of more people than any other animal.

The rise of adjunctive therapies

"People are looking to help themselves," says Dr Kerryn Phelps.

Lakshmi Singh   Not all complementary therapies are classified as 'quackery', some are proving to be effective adjuncts to mainstream treatment.

Snow leopard DNA found in Chinese medicine sold in Australia

Snow Leopard DNA has been found in a traditional Chinese medicine, sold in Adelaide.

Chinese medicine purchased over the counter in Australia has been found to contain the DNA of endangered species. 

Australians quadrupled use of codeine, morphine

Endone and Oxycontin contain oxycodone, a strictly controlled opioid painkiller.

Jane Lee   Australians have quadrupled their use of painkillers such as codeine and morphine for cancer and other chronic illnesses over a decade, a study says.

Major adverse events rise in NSW hospitals

NSW hospitals recorded 53 serious adverse events.

Harriet Alexander   Instruments left in patients after surgery part of 53 "sentinel events".

Westmead leads ambitious new cancer research project

Elizabeth Doughty, 8, underwent a year of chemotherapy for a brain tumour the size of a lime, which made her blind in ...

Sarah Muller   A new cancer research project led by Australian scientists analysing 70,000 cancer samples may be a "game-changer" for research, diagnosis and treatment.

Why hipster beards may be the cure

The bacteria found in men's beards may lead to new antibiotics at a time when scientists are trying to find medicine for ...

Will Willitts   In the search to find antibiotics to find mutating infections, scientists have found the bacteria in hipsters' beards may be the answer.

What happens when you get stoned every single day for five years

The more weed people smoked, the worse they performed on the memory tests.

Christopher Ingraham   As it turns out, at least one stoner stereotype might be true.

Once-popular party drug ketamine now used for severe depression

Ketamin as an antidepressant is administered using intravenous drips.

Sara Solovitch   It was in November 2012 that Dennis Hartman, a Seattle business executive, managed to pull himself out of bed, force himself to shower for the first time in days and board a plane that would carry him across the country to a clinical trial at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) in Bethesda, Maryland.

Women more likely to yawn infectiously than men: study

Empathy is linked to ability to "catch" a yawn.

Han Nguyen   If someone women have a social connection with yawns, they are more likely to also yawn than are men in the same situation.

Loneliness grows from individual ache to public health hazard: US researchers

Loneliness can be a lethal health risk ... Scientists have found that social isolation changes the human genome in ...

Amy Ellis Nutt   It torments the young and terrorises the old. Loneliness, long a bane of humanity, is increasingly seen today as a serious public health hazard.

Why you can't just wipe out mosquitoes to get rid of the Zika virus

Spreading the Zika virus ... A female Aedes aegypti mosquito in the process of acquiring a blood meal from a human host.

Helen Coster   Is it right to wipe out an entire species? And could we do it, even if we wanted to?

A new vision for the dreams of the dying

Illustration: Jonathon Rosen/NYT

Jan Hoffman   For thousands of years, the dreams and visions of the dying have captivated cultures. But doctors tend to give them a wide berth, because 'we don't know what the hell they are'.

Qld must commit to anti-HIV trials: AIDS Council

PReP has proven extremely effective when taken properly in trials overseas and locally.

Amy Remeikis   Queensland needs to join trials to help stop new HIV transmissions in the next four years, the state's AIDS Council has urged, with New South Wales and Victoria both embarking on PrEP trials.

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Zika virus confirmed in Australia

Aedes aegypti mosquitoes, which can carry the Zika virus.

Harriet Alexander   The NSW Health department has confirmed two cases from passengers travelling from the Caribbean.

Qld prepares for Zika virus risk

Health workers fumigate to prevent the spread of viruses at El Angel cemetery, in Lima, Peru.

Amy Remeikis   Queensland's health authorities are undertaking research to determine if any other species of mosquito can spread the devastating Zika virus, as the state prepares for its potential spread onto its tropical shores.

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Asbestos exposure increasingly occurring at home, research shows

Asbestos exposure is now most likely to happen in the home.

Sarah Muller   While the overall rates of asbestos-related diseases have slowed, Australians are now most likely to be affected by asbestos at home, a new medical report reveals.