Second Porn Star Tests Positive for HIV

ABC News(LOS ANGELES) -- A second adult film star claims to have tested positive for HIV, two weeks after porn star Cameron Bay’s diagnoses temporarily halted production across the industry.

The porn actor, who goes by the name Rod Daily, tweeted Tuesday that he was HIV positive.

“Drumroll please!! I’m 32 years old and I’m HIV positive. Acute HIV, which means I recently was infected. For that I am blessed,” he tweeted.

In the tweets that followed, Daily said that he’d tested negative the week before, and doctors told him the contracted HIV within the last month. He also conveyed that he is accepting of the situation and optimistic.

“I felt bad for the guy who had to read me my first test result. His face turned to stone, I wanted to give him a hug and say it will be ok,” he tweeted.

The Free Speech Coalition, a porn industry trade group, said in a statement that it could not confirm whether Daily tested positive for HIV because the diagnostic tests to which he referred in his tweets were not performed at a facility that feeds into its industry STD testing system.  Although the tweets appeared to be authentic, the coalition did not know whether Daily wrote them, according to the statement.

“Beyond that, all we can say is that if the Twitter postings are in fact legitimate, that our thoughts are with Rod Daily and we urge him to immediately seek medical consultation,” the statement read. “We can assist him in this area if he reaches out to us directly.”

Daily performed exclusively in gay and transsexual scenes with condoms, according to the Free Speech Coalition. Although the coalition said that Daily’s partners should seek additional testing, it said its medical advisory board has yet to make a decision about whether another industry moratorium on production is necessary.

On Aug. 28, The Free Speech Coalition lifted moratorium on production prompted by Bay’s HIV diagnosis on Aug. 23.

“All performers who worked with Cameron Bay have been tested and cleared,” it says on an Aug. 28 blog maintained by the Free Speech Coalition’s STD testing organization, Performer Availability Screening Services, or PASS. “It is safe to lift the moratorium.”

Bay released a statement through the Free Speech Coalition when doctors confirmed her HIV status Aug. 23:

“As difficult as this news is for me today, I am hopeful that no other performers have been affected,” she said in the statement. “I plan on doing everything possible to assist the medical professionals and my fellow performers. Following that, my long-term plan is to take care of myself and my health.”

Bay’s agent, Mark Schechter, said she was “obviously distraught” at the diagnosis but was cooperating with testing organizations to make sure all her partners are notified and tested.

“Cameron has been a model citizen acting responsibly at this most difficult time,” Schechter said through the Free Speech Coalition. “Her courage should be lauded.”

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Drug Use Drops for America's Youth, Rises Among the Over-50 Crowd

Mark Gibson / Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Drug use among America's youth is dropping, but it's booming among people over 50, a U.S. government survey released Wednesday shows.

Last year, the rate of illicit drug use among children and teenagers 12 to 17 years old dropped to 9.5 percent, down from 11.6 percent a decade earlier, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration's (SAMHSA) latest national survey.

Meanwhile, illicit drug use among adults 50 to 64 years old has increased in the past decade.

Specifically, illicit drug use among adults 50 to 54 has more than doubled since 2002, reaching 7.2 percent last year. For people 55 to 59, such drug use has more than tripled, reaching 6.6 percent last year.

Marijuana is by far the most-used illicit drug among both children and adults, according to SAMHSA, a division of the Department of Health and Human Services.

At a press conference Wednesday in Washington, officials expressed particular concern about use by those 12 to 17 years old.

"There's no question that marijuana is harmful to the developing brains of adolescents," said SAMHSA administrator Pamela Hyde, adding that marijuana use has been linked to "significant I.Q. declines."

As for young adults – those 18 to 25 years old – rates of illicit drug use have remained somewhat steady over recent years, with a slight increase in marijuana use, according to the survey.

Illicit drug use among children had remained steady at 10.1 percent from 2009 to 2011, which was a slight increase from years before. Overall, though, use for that age group has dropped in the past decade.

The data was released at the start of September to help kick off National Recovery Month, a government-sponsored promotion of preventing and treating substance abuse and mental health disorders.

"Recovery Month reminds us that the work we do to promote and support recovery has lasting, positive impact on so many individuals, families and communities," said H. Westley Clark, the director of SAMHSA's Center for Substance Abuse Treatment. "It also reminds us that while we have made great strides, there is still much for us to do."

The press conference on Wednesday featured young men and women who shared their personal stories of addiction, mental health disorders and now continuing recovery.

They came from all different backgrounds.

Twenty-eight-year-old Daniel LaPointe grew up in suburban New Jersey with a "loving family" that stressed "educational excellence," he said.

In 1997, at age 12, he won a contest for writing an essay titled "Why I Won't Try Drugs." A month later, suffering from insecurities and depression, he started smoking marijuana, which ultimately led him to heroin and, as he put it, "the funerals of five good friends."

Juan Velez Court grew up in San Juan, Puerto Rico, suffering from multiple mental health disorders. He tried to commit suicide several times and started to mutilate himself.

"I was so tired of not knowing what to do, the only way was punishing myself until the physical pain overcame the emotional pain," he said, adding that whole-body "wellness" has helped him continue with recovery.

Jenna Bertino, also of New Jersey, was almost brought to tears while telling her story.

When she was 13, two days after Christmas, her father took his own life. Refusing to "face that reality," she started drinking beer and smoking marijuana, and she eventually moved on to pills, she recalled.

"Before I knew it, I had a $200-a-day Percocet habit, and I was robbing and lying and manipulating and doing whatever I needed to do to get one more," she said. "I had become a monster. My mom used to sleep with her purse under her pillow out of fear that I was going to come in and rob her."

Her drug use didn't stop there. Ultimately, she moved on to heroin, hanging out in neighborhoods she said she had "no business" visiting. Then she was arrested and thrown behind bars.

"From that jail cell I started to see hope. I had this moment of clarity, and in that moment I no longer wanted to die a using addict with a needle in my arm," she said. "I wanted to live."

Bertino entered a rehabilitation program, during which she learned about herself and how to cope with life's challenges, she said.

She finished the rehabilitation program in 2010. Since then, she graduated college, and now she is starting graduate school.

"It's amazing that I have a purpose," she said.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Dime-Sized Frog Likely Uses Mouth to Help It Hear

ABC News(PHILADELPHIA) -- The Gardiner's Seychelles frog, so tiny it fits easily on a fingernail, belts out high-pitched peeps every couple of minutes. While its tiny size and mouse-like squeaks are reason enough to raise eyebrows, researchers at the Centre de Neurosciences Paris-Sud found these frogs may be using their mouths to better hear what's going on in their surroundings.

Herpetologists -- those who study amphibians and reptiles -- have known that these frogs lack a middle ear, which, consisting of several bones and muscles, is what enables many animals (and humans) to hear. Renaud Boistel, a researcher at CNPS, said the Gardiner's Seychelles was not the only frog to lack an inner ear.

"There are approximately 6,000 frogs in the world," Boistel told ABC News. "But about 300 frogs are without middle ears, around 6 percent."

The middle ear itself isn't what transforms changes in air pressure into something that the brain interprets as sound. Yale Cohen, an associate professor of head and neck surgery at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, uses the analogy of a swimming pool to explain the role of the middle ear.

"If you're underwater and you're yelling to your friends underwater, they can't hear you," said Cohen. "Water is more dense than air, so acoustic energy bounces off the water and most of that energy is lost. What the middle ear does is it amplifies the sound to compensate for the difference in density."

It was a mystery how the Gardiner's Seychelles frog could hear anything. To figure it out, Boistel used X-ray imaging to see if there was anything unique in the frog's anatomy that could replace the middle ear's ability to amplify sound.

Using the X-ray data, Boistel created a model of what sounds could be amplified within the frog's mouth, given its size and shape. "Only the oral cavity has the ability to resonate at 5,738 hz," he writes in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences paper.

That particular frequency is relevant to the frog because it closely matches the average frequency of the frog's calls, at around 5,710 hz. "Thus, the oral cavity appears as the ideal frequency-tuned candidate to amplify the acoustic signal," writes Boistel. In a sense, it uses its oral capabilities to assist its aural ones.

Cohen says that Boistel's paper gives really good, strong evidence to the theory that the oral cavity plays a big role in the Gardiner's Seychelles frog's hearing, but that it's not yet proved. "You have to play with the frog's mouth, to somehow manipulate his oral cavity, to see how this would work," he said. "It needs to be shown, but it's still very cool."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Texans Warned About Whooping Cough

Michael Krasowitz / Getty Images(AUSTIN, Texas) -- Two weeks after a measles outbreak sickened at least 20 people in North Texas, the state is warning residents about another preventable disease: whooping cough.

Almost 2,000 Texans have contracted whooping cough this year -- a number on track to pass the 50-year record of 3,358 cases in 2009, according to the state’s department of health.

The contagious cough, named for its “whooping” sound, is caused by the bacterium Bordetella pertussis, which is spread through coughs and sneezes.

“This is extremely concerning,” state infectious diseases medical officer Dr. Lisa Cornelius said in a statement.  “If cases continue to be diagnosed at the current rate, we will see the most Texas cases since the 1950s.”

A vaccine given in five doses during the first six years of life can lower the risk of whooping cough.  But the pertussis vaccination rate in Texas -- about 94 percent -- lags behind the national average, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“Pertussis is highly infectious and can cause serious complications, especially in babies, so people should take it seriously,” Cornelius said.

Texas has already seen two pertussis-related deaths this year -- both of them in infants who were too young to be vaccinated, according to the state’s department of health.

The CDC recommends that all pregnant women get vaccinated against whooping cough between the 27th and 36th week of pregnancy, as antibodies passed from mother to baby can help protect against deadly infections in newborns.  Other family members should also be vaccinated to guard the baby as its immune system develops, according to the agency.

While the CDC admits the whooping cough vaccine is “not perfect” (it protects an estimated seven out of 10 people who receive it), since the vaccine’s arrival in the 1940s, the number of Americans infected and killed by the disease has dropped dramatically.

“Before pertussis vaccines became widely available in the 1940s, about 200,000 children got sick with it each year in the U.S.and about 9,000 died as a result of the infection,” the CDC says on its website.  “Now we see about 10,000-25,000 cases reported each year and, unfortunately, about 10-20 deaths.”

The infection tends to be milder in teenagers and adults than in babies, and is typically treated with antibiotics, according to the CDC.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Woman’s Time-Lapsed Weight Loss Video Goes Viral

ABC News(NEW YORK) -- A 26-year-old woman’s 88-pound weight loss has gone viral after a Reddit user created a time-lapse GIF that shows the woman’s body transformation in just five seconds.

Amanda, who asked that her last name not be used, began taking photos of herself in 2011 as a way to stay on track when she committed to losing weight.

“I knew that I had to start somewhere,” Amanda told ABC News.  “I figured if I did it [took pictures] at least once a month, at the end of however long it took, I would have this really cool end product.”

Amanda started weighing 222 pounds.  By eating a high-protein diet, controlling her portions and doing moderate exercise, Amanda lost the 88 pounds in one year and has kept it off.

“I don’t think I was actually prepared for the amount of emotional investment,” Amanda said.  “People bare their souls when they want to take back their health.”

Her gallery of weight-loss photos garnered nearly three million views online and inspired a fellow Reddit user to create the GIF that has everyone buzzing.

“The waist got smaller.  The bustline got bigger.  The neckline got smaller,” Dr. Jen Ashton, ABC News’ senior medical contributor, said of Amanda’s physical changes.

“But the more significant changes actually occur inside our bodies,” she said.  “Changes to one’s sense of self, to one’s physiology [and] to one’s internal metabolism.”

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Hospital First in US to Treat Internet Addiction

Dina Marie/Getty Images(BRADFORD, Pa.) -- A psychologist first coined the phrase "Internet addiction" in 1995, when the Web was in its infancy.  He meant it as a joke.  But now, with the first hospital-based Internet addiction treatment center opening next week at the Behavioral Health Services at Bradford Regional Medical Center in Pennsylvania, Internet addiction is no longer considered a laughing matter.

The voluntary, 10-day in-patient treatment program will admit up to four people who have been diagnosed with severe Internet addiction.  First, they'll undergo an extensive evaluation and a "digital detox" that prohibits phone, tablet or Internet use for at least 72 hours.  Then, they'll attend therapy sessions and educational seminars to help them get their Internet compulsion under control.

Kimberly Young, a psychologist and founder of the new program, defined Internet addiction by the consequences of Internet overuse rather than the number of hours spent online.  She said there was a difference between people who depended on modern technology but could balance their online life with their offline life, and people whose obsession prevented them from functioning normally.

"Like any other addiction, we look at whether it has jeopardized their career, whether they lie about their usage or whether it interferes with relationships," she explained.

Young said typical Internet addicts were young, male and highly intelligent.  They often struggle socially and have low-self esteem, she said.  The majority are obsessed with such games as World of Warcraft, not social media or pornography.

"They go online because they can become someone else and be admired for their skills," she said.

The goal of the program is to allow patients to get back on the Internet but in a healthy way, Young explained.  Computer use is so essential to modern life, Young doesn't believe it's practical for someone to stay completely offline.

Patients will have to pay the program's $14,000 fee out-of-pocket.  Because Internet addiction isn't recognized as a mental health disorder by the psychiatric community, treatment isn't covered by insurance.

When the American Psychiatric Association released its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders 5, or DSM-5, earlier this year, "Gaming Disorder" was listed for the first time.  But it was included only in Section III of the manual, which is reserved for conditions that require further research before can be formally identified as a disorder.

The manual deliberately excludes any mention of addiction to social media, email or general web surfing because there isn't a great enough body of research to form a consensus on these topics, said Dr. Charles O'Brien, a professor in the department of psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania who was the chairman of the DSM-5 Substance Related Disorders work group.  And, he said, anyone addicted to Internet pornography is likely covered under the manual's definition of sex addiction.

"We are trying to come to grips with something that is very new, and we don't want to define this as a disorder unless it is clinically important," said O'Brien.  "We don't want to create an illness just to have another illness."

O'Brien said an addiction is defined as a compulsive need for something characterized by increasing tolerance, mental and physical harm caused by usage and well-defined withdrawal symptoms, such as depression and anxiety.  Almost all universally recognized addictions are for substances such as drugs, alcohol and tobacco, because behavioral addiction is so difficult to pin down.  Gambling is currently the only behavioral addiction recognized in the DSM-5.

O'Brien said a lot more research was needed, but he suspected that Internet addiction, at least as it applies to gaming, will eventually become an accepted diagnosis.  While he doesn't believe many people would yet meet the criteria for addiction in the United States, he said it's a lot more prevalent in other countries.  In North Korea, China and Japan hospital treatment programs for gaming addicts were established more than a decade ago, he said.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Sextuplets Celebrate Sixth Birthday, Go Back to School

Courtesy Karoline Kiewra Byler(NEW YORK) -- Karoline Byler's kitchen counter was filled with 120 mini-cupcakes Tuesday morning, packed away into three big bags and ready to travel.

Byler isn't running a cupcake business.  She's the mother of sextuplets, and because it was their birthday, that meant it was her turn to bring cupcakes to school -- for six different kindergarten classroom parties.

"I'm not going to lie, it's a lot," Byler said with a laugh.

Byler, of Wesley Chapel, Fla., gave birth to Brady, Eli, Ryan, Jackson, Charlie and Mackenzie on Sept. 1, 2007, and has watched as they've grown from preemies into kindergarteners.  They are Florida's first sextuplets, according to All Children's Hospital, the St. Petersburg hospital where they were born.

Now that they're a little older, this is the first school year that they've been separated into six different classrooms.

During their year of pre-kindergarten, three children were in one kindergarten classroom and three were in another.  But when Byler and the children's teachers decided it was best to give them one more year before first grade, they also decided it would be good to split them up.

The more outgoing children didn't mind being separated from their siblings, she said.  For example, Mackenzie, the lone girl in the bunch, has always been able to play on her own.

"Five boys and one girl.  No one else has that mix in the United States," Byler said, adding that it sometimes feels like she has quintuplet boys and a single daughter who just happens to be the same age.  "She plays with the boys, but she's used to being an individual more than the boys."

But the rest of the Byler children weren't so easygoing.  The shy boys had a hard time starting the school year without a guaranteed friend.

"Jackson, he cried," Byler said.  "I'm not kidding you, he cried all the way to the classroom."

He wanted to be in the same class as Brady, with whom he shares a room, she said.

But now, three weeks into the school year, they're becoming more comfortable with the situation.  They like their teachers and are making new friends.  Plus, they get to see each other during art and gym, which isn't so bad.

A few children get speech therapy and Ryan, who has cerebral palsy because of a small stroke he had when he was born, gets physical therapy as well.

"I couldn't be thankful enough," Byler said.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


God, but Mostly Science, Helps Cure Colorado Teen of Cancer

Courtesy of the Srsich family(NEW YORK) -- On his 17th birthday two years ago, Peter Srsich, a high school lacrosse player and devout Roman Catholic, saw his faith hit rock bottom while undergoing seven rounds of grueling chemotherapy and 21 days of radiation for non-Hodgkins lymphoma.

"I was on the pain killer Dilaudid and was diagnosed with depression at the time," said Srsich, who was being treated at Children's Hospital in Aurora, Colo.  "Things had kind of started to pile up, and I started questioning, why would this happen?"

But his faith returned when his friend brought the Eucharist to his hospital bed and the teen said he felt the uplifting presence of God.

His ordeal began just before the end of his junior year in high school, when he developed a cough.  Then that summer, still suffering with the cough, he returned from a canoe trip to Minnesota and found himself overwhelmed with fatigue.  It was "a different tired than I had ever felt before," he told ABC News.

What at first looked like pneumonia, turned out to be a softball-sized mass on his left lung that was compressing his heart.

"It was so large, they couldn't put me under anesthesia because there was a risk I wouldn't wake up, so they couldn't even get a biopsy of it," Srsich said.

But today at 19, Srsich is in remission, again active in athletics at Regis University, a Jesuit college in Denver, and on the path to the priesthood.

He thanks his doctors for his physical recovery, but he credits his spiritual rebound to one of the most unusual and logistically complicated requests ever asked of the Make-a-Wish Foundation -- to meet the Pope.

Last May, Srsich, along with his mother Laura, father Tom and then 15-year-old brother Johnny, flew to Rome for a week where Pope Benedict blessed the teen, before resigning the following February.

This week, one Catholic blog jumped on Srsich's recovery story, calling his audience with the outgoing pope the reason for his "cancer cure."  But Srsich laughed, saying he has faith in both God and science.

"I credit all the years of medical research and the training of all the doctors going to school -- all that definitely cured me," he said.  "But God was behind it, helping me go through the treatment.  Medical science is phenomenal.  It would have been a death sentence 30 years ago, but in less than a year, I am back on my feet."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Rates of Lyme Disease Highest in Delaware and Vermont

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Delaware and Vermont have something in common that they would prefer not to have.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says these states are tops for the nation's highest rates of Lyme Disease.

Based on figures from 2011, Delaware confirmed 84 cases for every 100,000 residents while Vermont had 76 cases per 100,000.

Lyme disease, which comes from ticks infected by mice and deer, can lead to joint pain and affect the nervous system if left untreated.  Caught in time, the condition can be eradicated by antibiotics.

With hunting season approaching, sportsmen are being warned to take extra precautions, especially if they're shooting game in Delaware and Vermont.

Just recently, the CDC revealed that the actual incidence of Lyme disease, which is put at 30,000 confirmed cases annually, is probably 10 times higher than that because it often goes under-reported and undiagnosed.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Chobani Removes Affected Yogurts from Shelves After Mold Outbreak

Bloomberg via Getty Images (NEW YORK) -- Chobani has pulled containers of its popular Greek yogurt off store shelves.

The company has identifed the problem as a mold outbreak, it said Tuesday.

"The product in question is less than 5% of our production and is limited to cups produced at our Idaho facility, which accounts for only one third of our production capacity," Chobani said in a statement.

Chobani said it has removed and replaced the vast majority of possibly affected cups.

The expiration dates on the affected yogurts range from Sept. 11 to Oct. 7, the company said.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

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