Health Highlights: April 17, 2017
Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:
More Than Half of American Adults Have Tried Marijuana
A new poll finds that 52 percent of American adults have tried marijuana at least once and that 56 percent say the drug is "socially acceptable."
About 80 percent of Americans strongly support legalizing medical marijuana. About half (49 percent) are in favor of legalizing recreational marijuana and 47 percent are opposed, according to a new Marist poll that was conducted in partnership with Yahoo, ABC News reported.
Only 18 percent of Americans older than 18 say they use marijuana regularly or at least once or twice a month, according to the poll of more than 1,100 adults conducted in early March.
It also found that 70 percent of respondents said their parents would be unhappy to learn they were using marijuana recreationally, and 58 percent of parents said their children would disapprove if they found out their parents were using the drug recreationally, ABC News reported.
New Details on Prince's Death Revealed in Court Documents
Prescriptions for opioid painkillers were written for Prince's friend and estate manager Kirk Johnson but used by the musician, court documents unsealed Monday reveal.
Dr. Michael Todd Schulenberg said he wrote an Oxycodone prescription for Prince under the name of Johnson for privacy purposes, CNN reported.
The documents also describe how opioid painkillers were found in several places in Prince's Paisley Park home after his death last year.
The documents shed new light on the investigation into the musician's death, which authorities say is still open and active. No one has been charged in connection with Prince's death, which the medical examiner's office said was caused by an accidental overdose of the opioid fentanyl, CNN reported.
Prince Harry Reveals Impact of Losing Mother
The U.K.'s Prince Harry said he suffered for a long time after his mother Princess Diana died and that it contributed to years of "total chaos" in his late 20s.
He finally sought help about three years ago at the urging of older brother Prince William, Prince Harry said in a podcast released Monday by The Daily Telegraph, The New York Times reported.
Diana died Aug. 31, 1997 at age 36.
"I can safely say that losing my mum at the age of 12, and therefore shutting down all of my emotions for the last 20 years, has had a quite serious effect on not only my personal life but my work as well," Prince Harry said.
"I have probably been very close to a complete breakdown on numerous occasions when all sorts of grief and sort of lies and misconceptions and everything are coming to you from every angle," the 32-year-old added, The Times reported.
Prince Harry's openness about his grief and struggles was praised by advocates for mental illness and others.
The two princes and Prince William's wife, the Duchess of Cambridge, are leading a campaign to end stigma around mental illness, The Times reported.
U.S. Navy Bans E-Cigarettes
Electronic cigarettes have been banned on U.S. Navy ships, submarines, aircraft, boats, craft and heavy equipment after a number of incidents.
The concern centers around the risk of explosion or fire from lithium-ion batteries in e-cigarettes, the Navy said.
The ban takes effect May 14 and applies to all military and civilian personnel. The use of e-cigarettes will still be allowed on bases, but only in designated smoking areas, National Public Radio reported.
The ban will remain in effect until a risk analysis is completed.
There were 15 e-cigarette-related mishaps between October 2015 and June 15, 2016 that resulted in either injuries or damage, according to a Navy memorandum, NPR reported.
"Eight of these incidents occurred onboard Naval vessels/aircraft," the memo said. "Nine of 15 reported incidents described the failure mechanism as explosive. ... Two battery explosions occurred with the electronic cigarette in the service member's mouth resulting in facial and dental injuries."
An article in the Navy magazine Sea Compass describes the cases of two sailors whose e-cigarette batteries exploded. One suffered first-degree burns, while the other's car was destroyed by fire, NPR reported.
"Imagine what would have happened if the batteries had exploded while in their home, the barracks or even onboard their ship," the article says. "The loss of property and potential loss of life could have been catastrophic."
World's Oldest Person Dies at Age 117
The oldest person in the world died Saturday at her home in northern Italy.
Emma Morano,117, was believed to have been the last surviving person born in the 1800s, the Associated Press reported.
Morano's physician, Dr. Carlo Bava said, said he was told his patient stopped breathing while sitting in an armchair at her home in Verbania, a town on Lake Maggiore. Bava said Morano had been spending more time sleeping and less time speaking recently, but had eaten her daily raw egg and biscuits the day she died.
A woman in Jamaica, Violet Brown, born March 10, 1900, is now considered the oldest known person in the world, according to Gerontology Research Group records, the AP reported.
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