February 2, 2010 in Nation/World

Nation in brief: HIV drug may damage liver

From Wire Reports
 

WASHINGTON – Federal health officials said Monday that patients taking a Bristol-Myers Squibb drug for HIV are at risk of a rare, but potentially fatal, liver disorder.

The Food and Drug Administration said it has received 42 reports of the disorder since Videx was approved in 1991. Four patients died from bleeding or liver failure after developing the problem, known as non-cirrhotic portal hypertension.

The problem involves dangerously slow blood flow though the liver, which can cause veins in the esophagus to swell. These veins are thin and can cause burst, causing potentially deadly bleeding.

The FDA said it is keeping the drug on the market because its benefits to patients outweigh its risks.

U.S. attorney quits Landrieu case

NEW ORLEANS – The top federal prosecutor for New Orleans removed himself on Monday from the case of four conservative activists arrested last week while trying to capture hidden camera footage in a senator’s office.

The Department of Justice said in a news release Monday that Jim Letten, U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Louisiana, recused himself from the investigation of what happened in Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu’s office in New Orleans. The news release didn’t say why Letten was removing himself.

Traffic reporter lands on turnpike

HADDONFIELD, N.J. – A traffic reporter in a small plane put himself in the thick of a rush-hour tie-up when his aircraft had to make an emergency landing Monday on the New Jersey Turnpike.

It was a little before 7 a.m., before the morning rush in the Philadelphia suburbs gets going, when a low oil pressure indicator came on in the Cessna.

The pilot put the plane down on the northbound lanes of the turnpike in Cherry Hill.

“This was pretty much a non-incident in terms of what the outcome was like,” a turnpike spokesman said. “The plane landed, he taxied it over into the shoulder. We can’t even get motorists to do that when they break down.”


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