ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Climate Change Could Sting Allergy, Asthma Sufferers
Using Music and Sports to Improve Kids' Asthma
New Spray Could Benefit Cystic Fibrosis Patients
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Acupuncture Cuts Dry Mouth in Cancer Patients
Indian Spice May Thwart Liver Damage
Ginkgo No Shield Against Alzheimer's
ANIMAL CARE
Rest Easy. When It Comes to Swine Flu, Your Pet Is Safe
Safe Toys for Dogs
Beware of Dog Bites
BONES & JOINTS
Genes May Help Drive Rotator Cuff Injury
Extra Pounds in Mid-Life Affect Later Mobility
Resistance Training Boosts Mobility in Knee Arthritis Patients
CANCER
Lifting Weights Can Ease Arm Swelling in Breast Cancer Survivors
Hypnosis Cuts Hot Flashes for Breast Cancer Survivors
Minorities Distrust Medical System More
CAREGIVING
Recession Scrambling Health Spending in U.S.
Babies Born in High Pollen Months at Wheezing Risk
Study Links Pesticides to Birth Defects
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Night Shift Work Hard on the Heart
Years of Exposure to Traffic Pollution Raises Blood Pressure
Bad Marriages Harder on Women's Health
COSMETIC
Mouse Study Finds Molecule That Tells Hair to Grow
Gum Chewing May Cut Craving for Snacks
With Psoriasis, the Internet May Offer Hope
DENTAL, ORAL
Laser Technology Spots Cavities Before They Start
Rheumatoid Arthritis May Harm Gums
Health Tip: At Risk for Gingivitis
DIABETES
Brown Rice Bests White for Diabetes Prevention
24 Million Americans Had Diabetes in 2007
Laughter May Lower Heart Attack Risk in Diabetics
DIET, NUTRITION
Blueberry Drink Protects Mice From Obesity, Diabetes
Shedding Light on Why Omega-3 Fatty Acids May Help the Heart
Brown Rice Bests White for Diabetes Prevention
DISABILITIES
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Smog Tougher on the Obese
Pesticides Linked to Parkinson's
Skin Woes Take Toll on U.S. Combat Troops
EYE CARE, VISION
Impotence Drugs Don't Harm Vision: Study
Contact Lens Cases Often Contaminated
Certain Diabetes Drugs May Pose Eye Risk
FITNESS
Higher Fitness Levels Tied to Lower Heart, Death Risks
Strenuous Daily Workout May Keep Cancer at Bay
Keep Safety in Mind While Your Kids Are Cooling Off in the Water
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Olive Oil May Protect Against Bowel Disease
Peppermint Oil, Fiber Can Fight Irritable Bowel
New Guidelines Issued for Management of IBS
GENERAL HEALTH
Any Old Cane Won't Do
Eating Well And Keeping Active As You Grow Old Will Help You Stay Sharp
Keep Fire Safety in Mind as You Celebrate
HEAD & NECK
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Magnet Therapy May Ease Hard-to-Treat Depression
Using Light Therapy to Silence Harmful Brain Activity
Combating Myths About Seasonal Allergies
HEARING
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Omega-6 Fatty Acids Can Be Good for You
After a Stroke, Light Exercise Gets Hands, Arms Working Again
Estrogen May Help Men's Hearts
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Viral Infection Might Trigger High Blood Pressure
Older Adults May Have Some Immunity to Swine Flu
Hand Washing 10 Times a Day May Help Keep Flu Away
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Frequent Feedings May Be Making Babies Fat
Obesity May Raise Kids' Allergy Risk
3 Home Habits Help Youngsters Stay Slim
MEN'S HEALTH
Whole Grains, Bran May Fight Hypertension in Men
Low Vitamin D Levels May Boost Men's Heart Attack Risk
Physical Activity May Prolong Survival After Colon Cancer
MENTAL HEALTH
Vitamin C Protects Some Elderly Men From Bone Loss
How to Attack Holiday Stress Head-On
Positive Brain Changes Seen After Body-Mind Meditation
PAIN
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
Alleviating Rheumatoid Arthritis
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Expectant Mom's Exercise Keeps Newborn's Birth Weight Down
Placebo Acupuncture Tied to Higher IVF Pregnancies
Alternative Treatments May Boost IVF Success
SENIORS
Exercise Helps Reduce Falls in Young and Old
More Whole Grains May Mean Less Fat
Keeping Mentally Active Seems To Keep The Brain Active
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
6 to 8 Hours of Shut-Eye Is Optimal for Health
Pay Attention to Signs That Say You're Too Fatigued to Drive
Meditation May Help Put Primary Insomnia to Bed
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Smoking Ups Risk of Second Breast Cancer
Acupuncture May Ease Depression During Pregnancy
Calcium Helps Ward Off Colon Cancer
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Topical Drugs May Pollute Waterways

Showers and baths are potential sources of hormones, antibiotics and other medicines that pollute water, a new study shows.

Toilets are a known source of environmental pollution from active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs), which are excreted in urine and feces. In addition, many people flush unused drugs down the toilet. APIs can make it through the disinfection process at sewage treatment plants and enter rivers, lakes and oceans. Some APIs end up in drinking water.

This study is the first to link bathing, showering and laundering with API water pollution.

"These routes may be important for certain APIs found in medications that are applied topically, which means to the skin. They include creams, lotions, ointments, gels and skin patches," study co-author Dr. Ilene Ruhoy, director of the Institute for Environmental Medicine at Touro University in Henderson, Nev., said in a news release.

Because they are intact when they enter the environment, topical APIs can have a greater impact than APIs released in feces and urine, which have been broken down by the liver and kidneys.

For this study, the researchers reviewed hundreds of studies on the metabolism and use of medications. The findings were to be presented Thursday at the American Chemical Society annual meeting in San Francisco.

"We need to be more aware of how our use of pharmaceuticals can have unwanted environmental effects," Ruhoy said. "Identifying the major pathways in which APIs enter the environment is an important step toward the goal of minimizing their environmental impact."

SOURCES: American Chemical Society, news release, March 24, 2010 Published on: March 25, 2010