Health Highlights: April 21, 2014
Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:
HealthCare.gov Users Told to Change Passwords
Americans with accounts on the federal government's HealthCare.gov website should change their passwords due to a possible threat from the Heartbleed bug, officials say.
There is no indication that the website has been compromised and the advice to change passwords is a precautionary measure. Federal officials are conducting an ongoing review of Heartbleed and users of other government websites may also be told to change their passwords, the Associated Press reported.
"While there's no indication that any personal information has ever been at risk, we have taken steps to address Heartbleed issues and reset consumers' passwords out of an abundance of caution," said a statement posted on the HealthCare.gov website.
The Heartbleed bug affects encryption technology meant to protect online accounts. Users of many websites are being told to change their passwords, the AP reported.
New Muscular Dystrophy Drug's Chances for Approval Improve
A new drug to treat a form of muscular dystrophy that primarily affects boys may be closer to becoming the first approved treatment for the disease.
Eteplirsen was created to treat Duchenne muscular dystrophy, which affects about one in 3,500 boys worldwide. The drug seemed to be on track for swift approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, but that effort stalled late last year after a similar type of treatment for the disease failed in a clinical trial, the Washington Post reported.
However, Massachusetts-based Sarepta Therapeutics said Monday that FDA officials outlined a potential way forward for the drug and said they may consider it for accelerated approval.
"This provides the opportunity to get the drug approved and in the hands of all the boys who can benefit from it sometime in 2015," Sarepta chief executive Chris Garabedian told the Post.
Oscar Mayer Wieners Recalled
About 96,000 pounds of Oscar Mayer wieners are being recalled by Kraft Foods because they may mistakenly contain cheese.
Packages of "Oscar Mayer Classic Wieners" may instead contain "Classic Cheese Dogs," according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service, the Associated Press reported.
The labels on the recalled packages do not list the correct ingredients. The Cheese Dogs include milk, which is an allergen.
The recalled products include:
16-ounce individual consumer packages of "Classic Wieners Made with Turkey & Chicken, Pork Added," with a "USE BY 16 Jun 2014" date and product code "044700000632."
Cases of 16-ounce packages that were distributed to retailers of "Classic Cheese Dogs Made with Turkey & Chicken, Pork Added, and Pasteurized Cheese Product," with "USE BY 16 Jun 2014" date and case code "00447000005300."
For more information, consumers can contact Kraft at (855) 688-4386, the AP reported.