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Health Highlights: April 3, 2018

'Condom Snorting Challenge' Another Dangerous Internet Fad: Doctors New Autism Drug Being Tested in U.S.-Wide Trial

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

'Condom Snorting Challenge' Another Dangerous Internet Fad: Doctors

Medical experts are sounding the alarm about a potentially life-threatening fad among teens -- the condom snorting challenge.

Teens are posting internet videos of themselves inhaling a condom up a nostril until it re-emerges in the mouth. This dangerous stunt is a few years old but has recently taken hold again, CBS News reported.

Doctors and school officials are warning teens not to engage in this antic, which is a choking hazard.

"You are literally putting something down your nose, which connects to your mouth, which connects to your trachea," Dr. Ammar Ali, an emergency room physician at Beaumont Health, told CBS News. "I mean, you are risking choking on it."

There is also a risk of the condom getting stuck and of infection.

"The nasal passages and sinuses have special cells that can be damaged if objects such as condoms are placed in them, potentially leading to a bacterial or fungal infection," Dr. Robert Glatter, an emergency physician at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City told CBS News.


New Autism Drug Being Tested in U.S.-Wide Trial

A first-of-a-kind autism drug is being tested in a U.S.-wide clinical trial that includes 300 children and teens with high functioning autism.

Researchers are assessing if the drug, balovaptan, can help improve social behavior in youngsters with autism. Previous research found that the drug helped adults with autism, CBS News reported.

"There are not any approved treatments for what we think of as the core symptoms of autism all of the social difficulties, repetitive behaviors and the ability to function in everyday life," said Dr. Eric Hollander, director, Autism and Obsessive-Compulsive Spectrum Program, Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx.

Even if it's effective, the new drug would be just one part of treatment, he noted.

"There would still be need for speech therapy, occupational therapy, educational interventions, behavioral interventions," Hollander told CBS News.

There is no cure for autism, which affects 1 in 68 children in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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