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Health Highlights: Nov. 7, 2018

Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:

Duncan Hines Cake Mixes Recalled

Four varieties of Duncan Hines cake mix have been recalled due to possible salmonella contamination.

The recalled products include Classic White, Classic Butter Golden, Classic Yellow and Signature Confetti cakes mixes, Conagra Brands said.

U.S. health officials are investigating a salmonella outbreak in which five people have become ill. Some said they ate a cake mix before becoming ill, and some may have eaten raw batter. Consumers are reminded not to eat any raw batter.

The recalled cake mixes should be returned to place of purchase. For more information, consumers can call Conagra at 1-888-299-7646, 9 a.m. to 5 pm EST, Monday through Friday, or go to the company's website.

Salmonella can cause serious and sometimes deadly infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems.


Naloxone Products Remain Effective Past Expiration Date

Two naloxone products used to treat opioid overdose patients remain chemically stable long after their expiration dates, researchers say.

Naloxone is the generic name of the drug. The researchers found that the naloxone nasal spray Narcan was chemically stable for 10 months after its labeled expiration date and that the naloxone injection Evzio was chemically stable for at least one year after its listed expiration date, CNN reported.

The products tested were not kept in ideal storage conditions, according to the authors of the study presented Tuesday at the PharmaSci 360 annual meeting.

"I dispense naloxone to patients all the time, and I had a couple come in after it had expired, and they had used it, and people were brought back to life," said principal investigator Charles Babcock, an assistant clinical professor in the School of Pharmacy, Marshall University, CNN reported.

Naloxone has long been used by medical providers to treat opioid overdoses, but it is increasingly provided to drug addicts and people around them. Naloxone given by bystanders saved at least 26,500 people from drug overdoses between 1996 and 2014, according to the U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse.

This study "is obviously an important one for this day and time because of the opioid crisis that we are facing," Chris McCurdy, 2018 President of the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists, told CNN.

"Showing that these drugs are actually stable beyond their expiration date indicates that we need to go back to the manufacturers and regulatory agencies and get adequate expiration dates on these products," said McCurdy, a professor of medicinal chemistry at the University of Florida College of Pharmacy.

He was not involved in the study.


Congo Ebola Outbreak May be Uncontainable: CDC Director

It may not be possible to bring the Ebola outbreak in Congo under control and the deadly disease may become entrenched in the northeastern part of the country, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Robert Redfield says.

The outbreak in North Kivu province is in its fourth month and there have been nearly 300 cases, including 186 deaths, the Washington Post reported.

Ebola was first identified in 1976. No previous outbreak has resulted in the persistent presence of the disease.

If that occurs in North Kivu, "this will mean that we've lost the ability to trace contacts, stop transmission chains and contain the outbreak," said Tom Inglesby, director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, the Post reported.

The center hosted the Capital Hill briefing that featured the Ebola discussion with Redfield.

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