science
A Girl Lived with a ‘Twin’ Inside Her for 17 Years Without Knowing

A girl in India unknowingly lived with one of the rarest and most unsettling medical conditions for nearly two decades, her doctors say. According to a case report out this week, the girl had a sac containing her still-growing “twin” lodged in her abdomen for 17 years. The twin had hair, teeth, and even a spine. Read More >>

science
Scientists Say They’ve Found a New Organ in Skin That Processes Pain

It’s not common that researchers discover what could be an entirely new part of the human body. But a team in Sweden claims to have uncovered an intricate network of cells underneath skin that helps process certain kinds of pain. The find could broaden our conceptions of how we feel pain, as well as how to relieve it. Read More >>

robotics
These Robotic Shorts Make Walking and Running Easier

Exosuits—wearable robotic technologies that enhance our physical abilities—are slowly but steadily leaving the world of comic books and becoming a practical reality. This week, scientists introduced an exosuit that seems to reach a new milestone, helping users both walk and run with less effort. Read More >>

science
A Chlamydia Vaccine Shows Promise in Early Human Trial

A vaccine for the most commonly reported sexually transmitted infection in the U.S. – the bacterial disease chlamydia – is now a substantial step closer to reality. On Monday, researchers reported that two of their vaccine candidates were found to be safe in a phase 1 clinical trial of 35 women. Though the trial wasn’t meant to prove their effectiveness, the vaccines also seemed to provoke an immune response to the bacteria in all volunteers. Read More >>

health
US Man Reportedly in a Coma After Contracting Brain Infection From a Mosquito

A rare, sometimes fatal viral infection spread by mosquitoes has resurfaced in the US state of Massachusetts—and has likely sent at least one man into a coma. Over the weekend, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health reported that a local resident contracted the Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) virus. Dozens of communities remain at critical or high risk for the virus, and residents are being advised to stay indoors at night. Read More >>

science
Scientists Have Created a Vaccine for Cat Allergies, but You Can’t Have It Yet

People unjustly kept away from feline companionship due to an allergy are rejoicing this week, after news resurfaced of a potential vaccine that makes cats less able to cause allergies. But while this research is promising, a finished product won’t be available any time soon. Read More >>

health
A Dangerous Algae is Killing Our Dogs – and Climate Change is Going to Make it Worse

A pair of tragic stories reported this past weekend are raising awareness of a threat to both people and animals in the water: algae. At least four dogs in two states along the Southeast U.S. have reportedly died from swimming in freshwater lakes and ponds filled with toxic blue-green algae. And as the climate warms, these sad cases could become more common in the U.S. and elsewhere. Read More >>

science
A Man’s Dentures Got Stuck in His Throat During Surgery, Leaving Him Bleeding for Weeks

Here’s a story that’ll haunt you into your golden years. Doctors say their elderly patient endured a nightmarish week of his throat bleeding out and weeks more of surgeries and hospital care, all because surgeons had forgotten to remove his dentures – dentures that then became lodged in his throat. Read More >>

science
Is Cleaning Your Ears With Cotton Buds Really That Dangerous?

A real-life horror tale that’s gotten renewed media attention this week is sure to make you think twice about digging earwax out of your ears. An Australian woman says she developed a life-threatening infection that ate away parts of her skull after years of swabbing her ears with cotton. But how likely is that scenario—and how dangerous are cotton buds to our ears really? Read More >>

health
A Woman’s Vaginal Steaming Left Her with Second-Degree Burns

A 62-year-old Canadian woman ended up with painful second-degree burns on her genitals after she attempted an at-home vaginal steaming, according to a case report. Ultimately, it delayed the reconstructive surgery she needed to treat an earlier vaginal injury. Read More >>

health
Fluoride Linked to Worse Kidney Function in Teens, but Don’t Flip Out

There are few things that can set off the paranoid-minded faster than talking about fluoride in the drinking water. But a new study out Thursday cautiously suggests that even low levels of fluoride in teens could be linked to changes in their kidney and liver function. It’s still unclear whether these changes are actually affecting teens’ health, though – or even if fluoride is really the main culprit. Read More >>

science
Scientists Find How Much Coffee Is Too Much for Migraine Sufferers

People who live with chronic migraines but also love coffee might be in luck. A new study by Harvard researchers seems to show that it takes a lot of caffeine to actually set off a painful episode. They found that people who drank fewer than three caffeinated beverages in a day weren’t more likely to have a migraine than they did on days when they drank no caffeine at all. Read More >>

science
Using a Fan in Hot and Dry Conditions Will Actually Make You Hotter

Electric fan fans are in for some bittersweet news. A new study out Monday suggests that while fans can help people cool down on hot and humid days, in hot and arid environments they may actually make you more uncomfortable – and may even be unsafe. Read More >>

health
U.S. Health Officials Urge People to Stop Vaping After a Sudden and Mysterious Rise in Lung Disease

More people hospitalised with serious lung problems linked to vaping have been found, Wisconsin health officials reported Friday. Last week, health officials reported eight cases of this strange cluster, all involving teens. The cases now involve teens and young adults. According to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, 11 cases have been identified (including the cluster of eight), and the state’s disease detectives are looking into seven other possible cases. Officials have not confirmed the cause of these injuries, but they’re explicitly warning residents to not vape, and the CDC has now joined the investigation. Read More >>

health
A US Man Was Killed by a Rare Brain-Infecting Disease Spread by Ticks

The most dangerous bug in the United States helped kill a man in the state of New York, state health officials reported Thursday. The man is believed to have died from a viral disease spread by ticks called Powassan fever. Though cases of Powassan remain rare, it’s one of many tickborne diseases that are becoming more common. Read More >>