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Elizabeth Cooney is a health reporter for the Worcester Telegram & Gazette.
Boston Globe Health and Science staff:
Karen Weintraub, Deputy Health and Science Editor, and Gideon Gil, Health and Science Editor.
Short White Coat blogger Ishani Ganguli
Short White Coat blogger Jennifer Srygley
Monday, September 17, 2007
Today's Health|Science: human growth hormone, suicide rise and the FDA, aging study's director
Patriots safety Rodney Harrison (left) said he injected human growth hormone to help heal his football injuries. Other professional athletes allegedly took it as part of a clandestine cocktail that they hoped would boost their recovery or power. And thousands of older people have flocked to clinics that promote the drug as a fountain of youth. But there is little or no evidence that the drug provides any of those benefits to healthy individuals, researchers and hormone specialists say, while overuse carries serious risks, including diabetes and heart abnormalities.
It's too soon to blame a record increase in youth suicides in 2004 on federal warnings that antidepressants such as Prozac can trigger suicidal thoughts in children, statistical experts say.
For nearly four decades, Dr. George Vaillant (left), a Brigham and Women's psychiatrist, has tended files from the Study of Adult Development, perhaps the longest-running investigation of aging ever conducted.