Circumcision remains a controversial procedure, and now a new study from Denmark sparks additional concern
Welcome to your daily roundup of important health news
Every day, an estimated 6,800 new peer-reviewed academic articles are published. That’s a whole lot of science to wade through—but don’t fret. We’ll do the legwork for you, each and every morning. Here’s your daily dose of the latest discoveries from journals, research institutions, and news outlets from around the world.
Understand the Circumcision Risks
Circumcision remains a controversial procedure, and now a new study from Denmark sparks an additional concern: Circumcision can raise the risk of developing a condition called meatal stenosis—a narrowing of the urethral opening that can cause painful or problem urination—by up to 26-fold, with the greatest risk seen in those circumcised before age 10.
The researchers discovered 182 cases of meatal stenosis in the 810,000 men in the study, including 176 cases in the 3,375 males who were circumcised. Still, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics position statement, the benefits of newborn circumcision—like prevention of urinary tract infections, penile cancer, and sexually transmitted infections, including HIV—outweigh the risks for families who choose it.
Watch Your Heart If Your Joints Hurt
People with the autoimmune conditions rheumatoid arthritis and psoriatic arthritis—both which cause painful, swollen joints—have an increased risk of developing risk factors for heart disease, a new study in Arthritis Care & Research found. These include hypertension, high cholesterol, and diabetes. The inflammation might be a driving force behind both the joint issues and the heart disease factors, the experts believe.
Search Out Peace and Quiet
Living next to a lots of traffic could hurt your brain: People who live within 50 meters (about 55 yards) of a major traffic road were 7 percent more likely to develop dementia than those who lived 300 meters away or further, a new study in The Lancet found. The researchers weren’t able to prove that proximity to traffic causes dementia, but they believe both noise and air pollution can harm your brain.
Re-Think Those E-Cigs
We’ve previously reported on the hidden dangers of e-cigarettes, but now the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is exploring another issue with them: the possibility of them exploding. In fact, research from the FDA calculated 92 cases of e-cigs overheating, catching fire, or exploding—half of which caused injury—from 2009 to 2015. So in April, the FDA is hosting a public workshop on the issue to help clarify safety concerns associated with them.
Get Enough D
Skimping on vitamin D can be a real pain: Men with the lowest blood levels of vitamin D were 113 percent more likely to experience frequent headaches than those with the highest levels, a study in Scientific Reports found. It’s possible that sufficient vitamin D can suppress inflammatory compounds in your body, or trigger the production of anti-inflammatory compounds, both which can help headaches, the researchers write.