Add chili sauce to the list of public health dangers, right below tuberculosis and yellow fever. Last month, the Hawaii Department of Health issued an advisory about a popular hot chili sauce. The warning came after a bottle of the chili sauce, produced by Huy Fong Foods in Rosemead, Calif., exploded and splattered its spicy contents into the eyes and mucous membranes of at least one victim.
According to the Health Department, the garlic used to make the sauce is fermenting and forming gases that pressurize the contents of the 17- and 28-ounce plastic bottles. Huy Fong Foods voluntarily recalled the sauce from California shelves in September, but the bottles remained on Hawaii's shelves until the explosive incident.
Health officials in Germany retracted a warning about soccer jerseys and said the rogue jerseys pose no health hazard.
Early last month, German officials yanked a batch of Nike-manufactured soccer jerseys off the shelves after declaring that an odor-blocking chemical in the jerseys posed a health hazard to wearers, the Associated Press reported.
About a week later, however, Germany's consumer protection office back-pedaled and said that the suspect chemical, tributyltin, did not pose a risk to jersey-wearers.
Middle-aged men who wear the tight satiny uniforms of their favorite Bundesleague team can now breathe easy.
Same story, different spin. A study in the Dec. 23 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine reported on primary-care physicians' feelings about how much care they're expected to provide without referring to specialists.
The study was done by the Center for Studying Health System Change and surveyed more than 12,000 physicians.
In its release, the group reported that "one in four primary-care doctors report concern about the care they are expected to provide to sicker patients without referring them to specialists."
On the other hand, the American Association of Health Plans, emphasized in its release that "the vast majority of primary-care physicians are comfortable with the scope of care they deliver to patients."
Guess it's a case of glasses--or maybe waiting rooms--being half empty or half full.
MYOB, doc. Carlos Ruiz, M.D., thought he was carrying out what he swore to in the Hippocratic Oath: caring for the ill and injured. Instead, he was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct and assault and battery.
Ruiz, director of internal pediatric cardiology at Rush Children's Hospital in Chicago, was walking his dog in early December when he saw a crowd surrounding a man on the sidewalk. Ruiz says the man was "blue . . . I pulled his tongue out, pulled his chin up, and he started to breathe."
When the paramedics and police arrived, Ruiz says things got ugly. They didn't believe he was a doctor and accused him of interfering with paramedics. One officer who was in the ambulance jumped out, yelling, "I've had enough of you," and threw Ruiz against the ambulance, he says.
During a Jan. 13 court appearance, the prosecution offered to dismiss the charges if Ruiz would write a public apology. "Obviously (my attorney) said absolutely not," Ruiz says. His next court date is Feb. 9 in criminal court. Several witnesses are expected to testify on his behalf at trial.
Chicago Police spokesman Pat Camden would only say: "He was arrested on the signed complaints of a paramedic. That's the extent of it."
Ruiz says the police refused to show him their identification, didn't read him his rights and told him the city had passed an ordinance stating that paramedics supersede physicians. Representatives from the mayor's office didn't return phone calls seeking comment. They're probably still searching the books for that ordinance.