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WABC-TV(NEW YORK) -- As the opioid epidemic continues to grow nationally, the company that makes a medication to block the effects of an opioid overdose said it will give a free carton of the antidote to any U.S. high school.

Adapt Pharma, maker of the Narcan nasal spray, announced the move on Thursday.

The medication consists of a drug called naloxone, which comes as a nasal spray or injection. It can quickly reverse the dangerous effects of an opioid overdose by binding to important receptors in a person's central nervous system, thus blocking the opioid from depressing the nervous system.

Mike Kelly, president of U.S. Operations at Adapt Pharma, called the decision to give high schools access to the medication a "key milestone."

"This device will equip those in our communities -- families, friends, caregivers and school nurses -- with a tool they can rely on without need for medical training or expertise," Kelly said in a statement.

Opioid addiction has driven an increase in accidental deaths in the U.S. Nearly 19,000 people who took prescription painkillers died in 2014 and another 10,574 individuals died in relation to a heroin overdose, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The Association of School Nurses adopted a position last year that school nurses should "review local and state policy on how to access naloxone and implement its use as part of their school emergency response protocol."

"Harm reduction approaches to OPR (opioid pain reliever) overdose include expanding access to naloxone, an opioid overdose antidote, which can prevent overdose deaths by reversing life-threatening respiratory depression," the association said in a statement. "When administered quickly and effectively, naloxone has the potential to immediately restore breathing to a victim experiencing an opioid overdose."

The group pointed out that nurses are the first responders during a school emergency and should be ready for drug overdoses.

"Naloxone saves lives and can be the first step toward OPR abuse recovery," association officials said.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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iStock/Thinkstock(CAMBRIDGE, Mass.) -- At least 41 people at Harvard University have been diagnosed with the mumps, according to university officials. The news comes as a second outbreak has been reported at Sacred Heart University in Connecticut where at least eight have been diagnosed with the mumps.

At Harvard, 11 people have been put into isolation in an effort to stop the virus from spreading through campus, according to school officials.

"Harvard University Health Services (HUHS) has been actively working with groups from across the university to keep the Harvard community informed about best practices for preventing the spread of mumps," Dr. Paul Barria, director of HUHS, said in a statement Wednesday. The school is working closely with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and the Cambridge Public Health Department.

At least 40 of the people sickened at Harvard were vaccinated. The source of the outbreak, which was first reported on Feb. 29, remains unknown.

A second outbreak was reported Wednesday by Sacred Heart University in Connecticut, where eight students have reportedly been infected with the virus. Another 17 possible cases are still being investigated. All students have fully recovered.

College students are particularly at risk for contracting the virus, health officials told ABC News. The mumps is spread through the saliva or mucus from the mouth, nose or throat, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Although most people are vaccinated against mumps at a young age through the MMR vaccine, the vaccination does not provide full protection. Two doses of the vaccine are approximately 88 percent effective at preventing mumps and one dose is 78 percent effective, according to the CDC.

"This is really happening in congregate settings where people are in dormitories," Susan Feinberg, a spokeswoman for the Cambridge Public Health Department, told ABC News Wednesday. "College campuses are the perfect storm, because students are sharing all kind so things, they're in close contact and going to parties."

Symptoms of the virus include fever, tiredness, muscle aches and swollen glands. In rare cases, severe complications including meningitis or inflammation of the ovaries or testicles can occur.

Dr. William Schaffner, an infectious disease expert at Vanderbilt University, said colleges and universities have been at the center of many mumps outbreak in recent years.

"Universities are a wonderful receptor site for young adults incubating mumps," he noted.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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iStock/ThinkstockBy DR. JENNIFER ASHTON, ABC News Senior Medical Contributor

We've all heard that stress contributes to heart disease, but can stress management really reduce the risk? New data from Duke University suggests it might.

Researchers studied 151 patients who were referred for cardiac rehabilitation. All of the patients underwent standard cardiac rehab but half of them were also given stress management training, which consisted of time management, relaxation techniques and visual imagery. They also participated in group support and cognitive behavioral therapy.

Patients were followed up with in five years, and researchers found that the group that had stress management training had a lower rate of death and heart attack.

My prescription: Be aggressive about reducing stress -- try medication, exercise and even talk therapy.

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ABC News(NEW YORK) — Being spanked as a child appears to be linked to a host of long-term behavioral and mental health issues, according to a new review of evidence published this week.

But the report, which falls short of confirming a causal relationship, may not end the ongoing debate over this controversial form of punishment.

The report, published in the April edition of the Journal of Family Psychology, looked at data from 75 studies — a total of 50 years of data from more than 160,000 children. The researchers analyzed the relationship between childhood spanking and 17 outcomes including aggression, antisocial behavior and other mental health problems.

The research — featuring the findings from experts from the University of Texas at Austin and the University of Michigan -- found that 13 out of these 17 outcomes were significantly associated with spanking.

The authors point out, however, that the data cannot conclusively say whether spanking as punishment causes these problems, or vice-versa. For example, they note, children with behavior problems tend to elicit more spankings from their parents in general. Additionally, Besser noted previous research on spanking and outcomes in children has resulted in mixed conclusions.

Still, many may view this latest report as further evidence against the argument that spanking actually "works" as a form of punishment – and that it may also be linked to long-term damage that parents might not be aware of.

ABC News Chief Health and Medical Editor Dr. Richard Besser, a pediatrician, discussed the report's findings today on "Good Morning America."

"There have been hundreds of studies done but one of the concerns is that a lot of the studies included more severe forms of physical punishment like hitting with an object," Besser said. "So here they looked at 75 studies where it was just spanking, so hitting on the bottom with an open hand. What they found was there was no long-term benefits from that and some potential long-term harm."

Besser added, "These can’t prove it because you’re not randomly assigning kids to be spanked or not but when they looked at kids with various outcomes, these children were more likely to have been spanked. It’s children with aggressive behavior, children with low self-esteem, poor parent-child relationships and even some mental illness, like depression, more common in people who have been spanked."

Besser advised parents to focus on shaping their child's behavior.

"What I say first is catch your child being good," he said. "Praise works so much better. If you can catch them being good and reinforce that, that’s very effective."

When kids' behavior needs to be "shaped," Besser recommended using age-appropriate techniques.

"Time outs are great for kids who are two to five," he said. "Older kids, removing some of their privileges and then modeling good behavior."

"When you spank when you’re angry, you’re teaching your kids when they’re out of control they should use violence and it doesn’t work," Besser explained. "Often, it’s the parent who needs the timeout."

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Courtesy of Julie Burtwistle(SIOUX FALLS, S.D.) — Olivia Burtwistle grew as a typically curious and energetic child until soon after her fourth birthday, when her parents began to notice changes, including a “rapid decline” in Olivia’s vision.

The Burtwistles, Brad and Julie, met with doctors around the country searching for answers for Olivia. At age 7, their daughter was diagnosed with juvenile Batten disease, a rare genetic illness that affects children and destroys brain cells, causing neurological disorders like blindness, seizures, dementia and ultimately premature death.

“Think about your child if you have a normal, vivacious, you know, outgoing 7-year-old daughter who suddenly goes blind and then imagine that's just the beginning,” Julie Burtwistle told Robin Roberts in an interview that aired Thursday on Good Morning America.

Olivia, who is now 12, and her family, who live in Colorado, see a glimmer of hope for a cure in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, home to one of the country’s leading medical systems, Sanford Health.

The system’s castle-themed children’s hospital draws people from all over the country and its research center conducts cutting-edge research.

Dr. David Pearce, president of research at Sanford Health, is on the front lines of the research now underway there into adult stem cell therapy.

“What we're working on here is cures for rare diseases, cures for children,” Pearce told Roberts.

Speaking of Olivia, Pearce added, “Unfortunately cells in her brain are dying. We can try and compensate for that with drugs and with gene therapy, but ultimately we want to be able to replace those cells and restore her to full function.”

Olivia has not yet been treated at Sanford Health. Her family's dream is for her to be treated at Sanford if researchers find a cure in time.

Currently, less than one percent of rare genetic diseases like Batten disease have treatments that are approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Researchers are in what they describe as a race against time to implement adult stem cell therapy — which is still in the research phase — as a cure.

“For stem cells, it's going to be a slightly slower process because it just hasn't been done before,” Pearce said. “You know, I'd like to be optimistic — one year — but it's probably more realistically three years, quite frankly.”

Pearce said he is encouraged that clinical trials and treatments for patients are already in progress.

“I personally can't think of any more, you know, job satisfaction than that because it's not a job. It's a passion,” Pearce said. “It’s a life.”

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iStock/Thinkstock(BOSTON) — A hospital or other medical center may seem like a safe space, but for health care employees, the workplace can be a dangerous environment.

A new article in the New England Journal of Medicine highlights just how often health care workers face violence in the workplace. The review of multiple studies points out that three out of four workplace assaults occur in the health care setting.

While the killing of health care workers is rare, other violent attacks, both verbal and physical, are quite common. The most common form of workplace violence in the health care setting is perpetrated by patients or visitors against health care providers, accounting for 75 percent of aggravated assaults and 93 percent of all assaults against employees in hospitals, according to the findings.

Lead author Dr. James Phillips, an attending physician at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Instructor at Harvard Medical School, reviewed prior studies of attacks and the numbers are startling.

He found a variety of reports, including that health care workers are almost four times as likely to miss work because of violence than from other injuries.

According to one study, 4.5 percent of violent health care incidents occur against emergency medical services (EMS) providers. Patients were the attackers in 90 percent of these attacks. While 80 percent of EMS personnel experience physical violence during their careers, slightly less than half of these are reported to the police.

The highest rates of abuse in hospitals are against nurses and nursing aides, likely because of the significant time spent with patients. One of the studies featured found that 39 percent of nurses involved reported verbal assaults annually, and 13 percent reported physical abuse.

Another study showed almost half of nurses experienced some kind of violence during their last five shifts, and one-third of those reported physical violence.

Hospital physicians are not immune to violence, either. About one in four emergency medicine doctors reported being physically assaulted in the prior year, and almost four out of five reported some kind of workplace violence. One in 10 physicians experienced workplace violence each year between 1993 and 2001.

Psychiatrists are at a particularly high risk, with 40 percent of them reporting physical attacks. One study of all staff members in a psychiatric facility demonstrated an annual rate at 99 percent for verbal attacks and 70 percent for physical assault.

The problem extends to other physicians, as well; even one in three pediatrics residents report they were assaulted during their training.

Jane Lipscomb, professor of nursing and public health at the University of Maryland, told ABC News that the American Nurses Association is doing a lot to combat this problem.

“Raising awareness is really, really important, part of the problem is that it has always just been considered part of the job. I think part of why it’s been accepted is that there is always this question of, ‘Well, the patient didn’t intend to act out.’ I think we need to get away from that,” Lipscomb said today. "Regardless of intent, it’s a problem. Any health care organization that takes a proactive stance against this is going to benefit from it.”

Despite such large numbers in the studies, Phillips suggests that the prevalence of health care violence is actually higher than what has been reported.

Violence against health care workers is also grossly underreported, according to the review published today. One survey mentioned in the review found episodes of violence were only reported by 30 percent of nurses and 26 percent of doctors.

Phillips blames a health care culture that minimizes the risk for violence against providers, and many providers believe such violence is just part of the job.

“The next step is a nationwide conversation and admission that we are overlooking a serious workplace safety issue,” Phillips said.

With no proven fix for this expansive problem, Phillips advocates for increased reporting of workplace violence, as well as a multifaceted, multidisciplinary approach to reduce violence. He discusses the need for more research to address potential solutions.

“Administrators are already working with limited budgets and would be reluctant to dedicate money and time towards efforts that haven’t been proven to be effective,” Phillips said.

He also cited a need for more discussion about workplace violence as a part of medicine, starting in medical school and nursing school. An ideal approach would involve training in self-defense and de-escalation of aggression, security measures and possibly other interventions to minimize the risk factors.

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iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Traumatic brain injury (TBI) has previously been associated with sleep disorders. However, new research shows that this effect may be long-lasting, and people may not know they are experiencing it.

Researchers compared 31 patients 18 months afer a TBI with people who had no brain injury.

The testing revealed that people with a TBI needed approximately one hour more sleep per night than their healthy counterparts.

But, people with TBI underestimated their sleepieness. Researchers noted that patients with prior TBI may need to be formally evaluated for sleep problems, rather than relying on their own history.

It is important to note that this was a small study with only 31 patients. This type of study can only show association, and not causation.

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Ingram Publishing/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The CEO of a pharmaceutical company will testify Wednesday that officials there were "too aggressive" in raising the price of heart medications, according to his planned testimony released by the firm.

L. Michael Pearson of Valeant Pharmaceuticals will testify Wednesday in front of the U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging in Washington, D.C. The committee announced in the fall that it is was investigating Valeant after the company raised prices significantly on three drugs they had recently purchased from another company.

Valeant raised the prices of two drugs to treat cardiac arrest and one to treat a rare genetic condition by hundreds or even thousands of a percent. The drugs for cardiac arrest -- Isuprel and Nitropress -- went up by 312 percent and 820 percent, respectively.

A third drug used to treat a rare genetic disorder called Wilson's disease rose in price by 2,849 percent from $888 for 100 capsules to $26,189, according to a letter sent to Valeant Pharmaceuticals by the Senate committee chairman and ranking member.

Pearson will describe the price increases as "mistakes," according to the released testimony.

"The company was too aggressive – and I, as its leader, was too aggressive – in pursuing price increases on certain drugs," Pearson noted. "Let me state plainly that it was a mistake to pursue, and in hindsight I regret pursuing, transactions where a central premise was a planned increase in the prices of the medicines, such as our acquisition of Nitropress and Isuprel from Marathon Pharmaceuticals.”

Pearson and representatives for Marathon Pharmaceuticals will testify at the Senate Special Committee on Aging later Wednesday.

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ABC News(NEW YORK) -- Before Lama Tsomo became one of the first American women ordained as a Tibetan Buddhist lama, or spiritual teacher, she was Linda Pritzker, part of the famous Pritzker family that built the Hyatt Hotel chain.

Lama Tsomo sat down with ABC News' Dan Harris for his livestream podcast show, 10% Happier With Dan Harris, to talk about what she has learned on her journey to becoming a lama and how it changed her life forever.

"I have two different names I truly do identify or respond to," she said. "And it's loosened my ego identification in a way because I'll answer the phone and I won't know, 'Am I Lama Tsomo in this conversation or Linda Pritzker in this conversation?'"

An heiress with a well-connected family, Lama Tsomo decided not to join any of the family businesses. Instead, she left college around age 20 -- though she later went back for her bachelors and masters degrees -- became a homesteader where she raised goats, got married, had three children and later got divorced.

She eventually found meditation and dove deeply into Buddhism, went on months-long retreats, learned Tibetan and now she teaches all over the world.

Lama Tsomo is also a co-founder of the Namchak Foundation and has written a book called Why Is the Dalai Lama Always Smiling, in which she shares her story about her life and details some of the Tibetan Buddhist practices, including a meditation technique she calls the "Tibetan Nose Blow."

"If you just think about the fact that we're trying to pull stuff to us if we want it, or push stuff away that we don't want, and we're occupying ourselves with that all the time, imagine if we could just part the clouds of that effort for a little bit, wouldn't that be nice?" she said. "And that's what this practice helps us to do, and so then we can sit in clear, calm meditation right away."

When she first started meditating, Lama Tsomo said she tried to do it on her own, gave up and didn't pick it up again until years later.

"I was really off-course," she said. "I was with the wrong people, doing the wrong stuff, and that kind of thing, living in the wrong place. And I kind of like, 'came to' and said, 'No, no, this is not my path in life. This is not the life I need to live.'"

"And so I decided I have to resume meditating," Lama Tsomo continued. "Because I realized ... all the thousands of decisions I was making throughout my day were that much more on track because I had tuned into myself."

By her late 30s, Lama Tsomo said she had studied many different forms of meditation, from Theravada, a sort of "old school Buddhism," she said, to Zen meditation and found the strongest comfort with Tibetan Buddhism after she recognized she had found a teacher with whom she could connect.

"Recognition is a funny thing," she said. "The lama-student relationship is different than meeting your spouse, but there's still this sort of recognition moment where you go, 'Oh, this is the person for me.' It's interesting. It is a very intimate relationship, but not at all romantic."

Lama Tsomo is a student of Gochen Tulku Sang-ngag Rinpoche, under whom she completed three years' worth of traditional practice, and he bestowed on her the lama title.

She went into great detail about the different Tibetan Buddhist teachings and her interpretations, such as what achieving enlightenment meant to her and the controversial belief in reincarnation or having past lives. But another practice she talked about was using meditation as a way to channel sympathy for others' suffering and then replace their pain with feelings of compassion.

"You imagine that suffering person in front of you and you're seeing their suffering face," she said. "Now you use your breath to really make it real, and you breathe in their suffering into your heart which is a bit of an act of courage. But if you're feeling moved by an act of compassion, you just want to take away their suffering and replace it with happiness."

"You imagine these sort of dense, thick dark clouds of the suffering," Lama Tsomo continued. "And then you breathe out these bright white clouds into them and you see their face changing into a smile."

For those who are skeptical or curious about these teachings, Lama Tsomo suggested doing what she did by having "openness, with asking a lot of questions."

"I think as we get older, we tend to learn less because we tend to decide what's what and that makes less room for learning," she said. "So I try to sort of work against time and try to keep the blinders open."

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iStock/Thinkstock(CAMBRDIGE, Mass.) -- There have been 40 confirmed cases of the mumps at Harvard University, even though many of those infected were vaccinated.

The outbreak was first reported on Feb. 29 and public health officials confirmed Thursday that the contagious disease had continued to spread though the Harvard community.

"This is really happening in congregate settings where people are in dormitories," Susan Feinberg, a spokeswoman for the Cambridge Public Health Department, told ABC News. "College campuses are the perfect storm, because students are sharing all kind so things, they're in close contact and going to parties."

The virus is spread through the saliva or mucus from the mouth, nose or throat, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Although most people are vaccinated against mumps at a young age through the MMR vaccine, the vaccination does not provide full protection. Two doses of the vaccine are approximately 88 percent effective at preventing mumps and one dose is 78 percent effective, according to the CDC.

Symptoms of the virus include fever, tiredness, muscle aches and swollen glands. In rare cases, severe complications including meningitis or inflammation of the ovaries or testicles can occur.

The longer a person is in proximity to an infected person, the more likely that individual will contract the disease, even if fully vaccinated.

Dr. William Schaffner, an infectious disease expert at Vanderbilt Univeristy, said in recent years colleges and universities have been at the center of many mumps outbreaks.

He said students from countries in the European Union, which do not require a mumps vaccination, have been the source of these outbreaks.

"Universities are a wonderful receptor site for young adults incubating mumps," he noted.

Dr. Paul Barreira, director of Harvard University Health Services, told the Harvard Crimson student newspaper he was concerned that the virus was continuing to spread after the school took measures to stop the infected students from being in contact with others.

"If there's a spike this week, that means those students expose others, so now we're looking at a potential serious interruption to commencement for students," Barreira told the student newspaper. "Students will get infected and then go into isolation."

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iStock/ThinkstockBy DR. JENNIFER ASHTON, ABC News Senior Medical Contributor

Do you take more than one medication, be it prescription or over-the-counter? If so, do you know the dangers of combining the drugs?

One in seven adults are on medications that can be harmful when taken together. This, as prescription and non-prescription drug use in the U.S. is on the rise.

In a new study, researchers looked at approximately 2,400 American adults and found that the percentage of them taking five or more prescription medications went up from 31 percent to 36 percent.

I recommend going to and using the site's "Interactions Checker." Enter every medication or supplement you take and look for drug-drug or drug-food interactions.

Remember: Not all moderate interactions mean you shouldn't take the given medication, but you should discuss them with your doctor or pharmacist.

Copyright © 2016, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — After four years of disappointment, Ben and Kate Lundquist's best chance of growing their family was in vitro fertilization.

But the treatment is expensive. “We were looking at about $17,000 total. That is all out of pocket,” Kate told ABC News.

Required to pay the full amount upfront, Ben, a full-time student, and Kate, an executive assistant, were going to be stretched thin. So they turned to a growing option for many looking for help paying medical costs: crowdfunding.

According to the CDC, one in eight couples faces infertility. According to RESOLVE, the National Infertility Association, a single cycle of IVF can cost between $12,000 to $20,000. While some insurance companies do cover a portion, many do not, so people are getting creative.

The Lundquists, of Salt Lake City, Utah, posted a fundraising campaign on YouCaring to spread the word to friends and family who wanted to contribute to their pregnancy efforts.

“I really felt that if we didn’t ask others for help, that we would not have the opportunity to have kids,” said Ben.

YouCaring, which says 50 percent of its fundraising campaigns are dedicated to medical needs, has seen the number of fertility-related campaigns grow steadily.

GoFundMe, another crowdfunding website, says at least 1,700 IVF campaigns have raised more than $3 million so far.

But no matter how you’re planning to pay, experts say advancements in science have helped the bottom line.

“Far less spending is done today in certain cases than years ago because we can achieve pregnancies with fewer cycles,” Dr. Daniel E. Stein, the director of Reproductive Medicine Associates of New York, explained.

In just three months, Kate and Ben raised $4,100 from 33 people who are mostly friends and family. At age 38, Kate says it allowed them to put “operation baby” into action quickly and kept them from maxing out their credit cards.

In March, Ben and Kate found out they are having twins. They're thankful to the fundraising campaign for helping them to raise the money they needed. “It motivated us to keep going and to realize people supported us and trusted us to have these children,” said Kate.

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ABC News(NEW YORK) -- One scoop. That’s all it takes to potentially end a life.

Every coffee drinker knows that too many cups can give you the jitters, but too much pure caffeine can be fatal within just minutes. One teaspoon of powdered pure caffeine is the equivalent of 25 cups of coffee.

Logan Stiner’s parents said he was just four days away from his high school graduation when he died from a caffeine overdose. The high school wrestling star was set to graduate fourth in his class and go on to study chemical engineering in the fall. His parents had never even heard of powdered caffeine and now they are personally lobbying the FDA to ban the substance.

“We didn’t know how much of it was circulating around, didn’t know what it was, never heard of it, and we thought we were pretty in the know,” his mother Kate Stiner told ABC News.

Concentrated caffeine can easily be purchased online as a powder, liquid or even an inhaler, and is often advertised as a health supplement, with little or no warning about its potency.

Lawmakers and advocates are calling on the FDA to ban concentrated caffeine products, saying there is no way they can be sold or consumed safely. They note it’s impossible to measure out the recommended dose of 1/16 teaspoon.

The parents of another victim, 24-year-old Wade Sweatt, said he died after going into a coma just minutes after trying the powder for the first time. On his phone, they found he had been Googling conversion charts trying to determine how much to take.

“It’s like an explosive, a catastrophe waiting to happen,” Sen Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., told reporters Tuesday.

After Stiner and Sweatt died from caffeine overdoses in 2014, the FDA met with their families and began warning consumers against pure powdered caffeine.

The agency issued warning letters to five companies last year and all five have since stopped selling the bulk product, but other manufacturers still sell it online. A simple search shows dozens of options available both from foreign companies and domestic producers. Most are inexpensive and with no more warning than the words “use sparingly” on the label. The FDA issued a warning to a Minnesota-based company selling caffeine just last month.

Laura MacCleery is the director of regulatory affairs for an advocacy group that joined the senators and families to petition the FDA. She said it’s unclear exactly how many cases of caffeine overdose there are because most people don’t think of caffeine as dangerous and a fatal overdose can look just like a heart attack. A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine found that dietary supplements send more than 23,000 people to the hospital every year. The FDA said Tuesday it has received no reports of adverse events since warning letters were sent out to five caffeine producers in August 2015.

Lawmakers say it is a “bitter disappointment” that the FDA has not moved more quickly on this issue and fear only more deaths will spur them to completely ban pure caffeine products.

Senators Sherrod Brown and Dick Durbin joined Blumenthal in calling on the FDA Tuesday to ban these products, saying that there is too much risk to wait for slower regulations. The FDA did not comment on a potential ban but said in a statement after the press conference that the agency will continue to monitor the market for dangerous products and encouraged Poison Control Centers to report calls related to caffeine to help consider future regulations.

Some states like Ohio and Illinois have banned pure caffeine products at a state level, but the senators said that anything below the federal level is practically impossible to enforce.

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moodboard/Thinkstock(FLINT, Mich.) -- Flint, Michigan, residents have filed a $220 million class-action lawsuit against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, claiming it was negligent in the toxic water crisis that contributed dangerous levels of lead to the city's water supply.

An administrative complaint representing 513 residents was filed Monday claiming property damage consisting of "irreparable impairment" of water service lines, plumbing and hot water tanks and "physical injury caused by ingesting water contaminated with lead, copper and other toxic materials."

The class action lawsuit seeks $15 million for property damage and $205.2 million for "personal injury damage."

Notice was provided to the EPA detailing a "massive environmental violation" by resident Jan Burgess on Oct. 14, 2014, according to the complaint.

The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality began to distribute water from the Flint "highly corrosive and toxic" river to more than 30,000 Flint residents on April 25 of that year, the complaint said.

"For almost 50 years, Flint water uses enjoyed plentiful clean fresh water purchased from the Detroit Water and Sewage Department," the document read.

Residents were exposed to the water from the Flint River for "539 days or 1 year, 5 months and 21 days," the complaint said.

The lawyer who filed the class action lawsuit, Michael L. Pitt, did not immediately return ABC News' request for comment.

The EPA did not immediately return ABC News' request for comment.

Last week, a federal judge in Detroit dismissed a $150 million class-action lawsuit filed by Flint residents and one Flint business, suggesting the plaintiffs refile in a Michigan state court due to lack of jurisdiction.

The next day, two Michigan Department of Environmental Quality employees plead not guilty after they were charged in connection to the water crisis. It is unclear if a supervisor at the Flint Plant Water has entered a plea to the charges against him. His lawyer, Robert Harrison, did not immediately respond to ABC News' request for comment.

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Polka Dot/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force is keeping its 2016 recommendations in support of breast-feeding nearly identical to those issued in 2008, with the exception of deleting one word: “promote.”

The independent panel of experts, who are funded and appointed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, recommended eight years ago that physicians “promote and support” breast-feeding among their patients. Only “support” survived this year.

The new guidelines still wholeheartedly recommend breast-feeding as the best choice for mothers and children but, as one of the authors explained, the change is meant to relieve pressure on women who cannot breast-feed, or make an informed choice not to do so.

“We felt that ‘supporting’ really emphasized that it’s about making sure that women have what they need when they make that choice,” Dr. Maureen Phipps said.

Phipps is chairwoman and Chace-Joukowsky professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Brown University and Women and Infants Hospital in Rhode Island.

The panel recommendation makes it clear that breast-feeding has proven health benefits, from preventing infection and allergies to lowering risk of diabetes and heart disease. But the decision to drop the word "promote" raises intriguing questions about the lines between patient autonomy, physician empathy and evidence-based recommendations.

Dr. Karen Duncan, a New York obstetrician-gynecologist, explained that some women have a lot of trouble breast-feeding, or cannot breast-feed because they are taking certain medications. So, in her view, the rewording was a “positive step” to help alleviate some of the stigma those women might feel.

“We don’t want to shame or pressure women into doing something they are unable to do,” she said. “We do think breast-feeding is the best […] but we need to be understanding that there are many circumstances that go into a woman’s decision about how to feed her baby.”

She added that social media – like Pinterest boards where moms display elaborate baked goods and impeccably decorated birthday parties – have increased the pressure women feel surrounding motherhood.

Some breast-feeding advocates, however, take issue with the wording change.

“Women need to understand all of the risks of formula, and benefits of human milk,” said spokeswoman Diana West of La Leche League International, an organization dedicated to helping mothers worldwide to breast-feed through "mother-to-mother support, encouragement, information, and education," according to its website.

West noted a distinction between the “guilt” women may feel if they don’t breast-feed, and “regret” that they weren’t fully informed about the benefits.

“What we really come to understand is that far too often, women feel tremendous regret because they were not given adequate information and support [about breast-feeding] when they needed,” she said.

She worries the new guidelines will do women a “disservice,” and lead to fewer women getting comprehensive information about the benefits of breast-feeding.

While she understands the motivation behind the change, New York City obstetrician-gynecologist Dr. Abigail Winkel finds the new wording “a little disappointing,” she said.

“It is an extremely important thing for doctors to be empathetic to their patients,” Winkel said. “But our patients need to be educated about something that has such a positive health benefit.”

It is crucial, she said, that doctors not avoid those tough conversations.

If breast-feeding is really not possible, Winkel advises patients to “let it go and move on,” she said. Being stressed about failure to breast-feed will only interfere with bonding, and there are “loads of other healthy behaviors” that mothers can engage in, like skin-to-skin contact, she added.

The guidelines call for further research into ways to decrease guilt and anxiety in women who cannot breast-feed. But regardless of linguistic nuances, the Preventive Services Task Force makes one thing crystal clear: when at all possible, breast is best.

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