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Health Highlights: May 9, 2011

Patient Says Full Face Transplant Feels Natural Shortage of Generic ADHD Drug Continues Health Care Law Battle Moves to Appeals Courts CPSC Warn Consumers About "metoo" Tabletop Feeding Chairs

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

Patient Says Full Face Transplant Feels Natural

At his first public appearance, the first U.S. recipient of a full face transplant said it "feels natural."

Dallas Wiens, 25, received a new nose, lips, skin, muscle and nerves during a 15-hour procedure in March. The resident of Fort Worth, Texas had suffered severe facial injuries in November 2008 when he hit a power line while painting a church, the Associated Press reported.

In his appearance Monday at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, Wiens said the first thing his young daughter told him after the transplant was "Daddy, you're so handsome."

Wiens was left blind as a result of his accident and the transplant did not restore his sight, the AP reported.

His operation was paid for by the U.S. military, which wants to find ways to help soldiers who suffer major facial wounds. The Department of Defense gave Brigham and Women's a $3.4 million research grant for five face transplants.


Shortage of Generic ADHD Drug Continues

Companies that make a generic form of the attention-deficient hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) drug Adderall XR say they don't know when a U.S.-wide shortage of the drug will end.

Many adult patients and parents of children with ADHD have been going from pharmacy to pharmacy trying to find the generic version, called mixed amphetamine salts, ABC News reported.

The scarcity of the drug is due to supply problems and U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration restrictions on the supply of amphetamines, according to companies that make the drug. The DEA denies any responsibility for the shortage.


Health Care Law Battle Moves to Appeals Courts

A hearing Tuesday marks the start of a five-week stretch of federal appellate hearings on the constitutionality of the new U.S. health care law.

Tuesday's hearing involves the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit considering two contradictory rulings made by lower courts, The New York Times reported.

In one case, a federal district judge in Richmond, Va. ruled that Congress exceeded its authority by requiring nearly all Americans to obtain health insurance. In the other case, a district judge in Lynchburg, Va. upheld the insurance requirement.

The issue of the health law's constitutionality could end up in the Supreme Court in the next term, which opens in October, and those opposed and in favor of the new health care law each hope to notch a series of victories in the Courts of Appeals.

"We want to win as many of these as we can," Attorney General Kenneth T. Cuccinelli II of Virginia, a Republican, told The Times. "If we have nothing but wins all the way up to the Supreme Court, there is an element of momentum, I think, where the justices consider what has gone on before the case came to them."


CPSC Warn Consumers About "metoo" Tabletop Feeding Chairs

Tens of thousands of clip-on tabletop feeding chairs for babies and toddlers pose a fall hazard, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission says.

The agency said about a dozen children have been injured while using certain versions of the "metoo" chairs imported by phil&teds USA Inc. of Colorado, the Associated Press reported.

Metal clamps used to attach the chairs to table tops can easily come loose, causing the chair to detach from the table. Also, a child's fingers or hands can be pinched or crushed if they're caught between the clamp and a metal bar on the front of the chair if it partially detaches from the table, the CPSC warned.

The chairs were sold online and at stores such as Target and Toys R Us.

The CPSC said phil&teds refused to agree to a national recall that was acceptable to the agency and that replacement kits being offered by the company will not solve the safety issue, the AP reported.

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