Author: Amanda Livingston

Amanda Livingston

Amanda Livingston is a graduate of Ithaca College, a New York City-based writer, and an aspiring children's book editor. She is currently pursuing her Master's in Publishing: Print and Digital Media at New York University.

Over half of Americans are misusing their prescription drugs — such as taking too much of a drug they are prescribed or taking medications that they are not prescribed — including powerful opioid painkillers, according to a new study examining patient lab tests. Quest Diagnostics examined more than 3.4 million lab tests taken between 2011 and 2016 involving prescription medications and found that 52% of these specimens indicated misuse, such as not taking a drug according to their doctor’s orders. Essentially, “every other American tested for inappropriate use of opioids and other prescription drugs,” F. Leland McClure, PhD, a director…

Read More

Children who receive a vaccine and suffer side effects or adverse events following immunization are not likely to have them recur after a second dose of the vaccine, according to a new study published in the journal Pediatrics. The finding is significant in that it reaffirms the overall safety of vaccines. Some parents have questioned the safety of vaccines and have refused to have their child immunized. However, the new research, which examined 29 studies on vaccinations mostly involving children, demonstrates that the benefits of vaccines in preventing many serious diseases outweigh the risk of adverse events happening again. In…

Read More

What if the side effects of medications could be determined by testing drugs on miniature model organs on microchips instead of lab rats or humans? Researchers in the Netherlands think this may be possible with a discovery called guts-on-chips. Guts-on-chips are model organs that contain human organ cells on microchips, and can imitate a working human organ. Researchers at the University of Leiden found that when guts-on-chips were exposed to aspirin for a long period, the chips developed imitative gastrointestinal perforation, a hole that develops through the wall of the esophagus, stomach, small intestine, large bowel, rectum or gallbladder. This…

Read More

Can you take that prescription drug while pregnant? The FDA wants to find out. The agency is taking a closer look at the risks and benefits of taking drugs during pregnancygiven that there is a general lack of information on the topic. Also, many expectant moms have concerns about taking medications. Relatively few prescription drugs have been approved for use during pregnancy, and many others other have never included pregnant women as part of clinical trials. As a result, the potential risks from drugs that pregnant women need for illnesses or medical conditions are largely unknown. Nearly half of the…

Read More