Today's Top Medical Stories for August 22, 2014

By CBS News

Published 08/22 2014 07:24AM

Updated 08/22 2014 09:15AM

Vision loss can be a serious health threat for the elderly. Researchers at Purdue University found that when older adults lose eyesight they have trouble with basic daily functions, like using the telephone, shopping, and doing housework. The study says when seniors can't perform those critical activities, they are at a higher risk for death.

Cancer of the larynx strikes as many as 13,000 people each year. A new study finds that for treating advanced cases, surgery may be more effective than chemo-radiation. Researchers at New York's Mount Sinai Hospital examined the survival rates for more than 5,000 patients. After two years, those who had surgery were 6-percent more likely to have survived the disease than those who opted for non surgical therapy.

And researchers studied a group of smokers to see how they would react to cigarettes with reduced nicotine. The Canadian study found participants did not smoke =more= cigarettes to compensate for the lower nicotine. And they did not puff with more intensity, which would have exposed them to toxic chemicals in the smoke. Researchers say the results will be important in the debate over how to regulate nicotine.   

(Danielle Nottingham,  CBS News)

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