What is Ocella?

Ocella is actually the generic version of Yasmin, and it is manufactured by Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, recently acquired by Yasmin manufacturer Bayer which specializes in producing generic versions of brand-name drugs. In the U.S., generic brands are required to be the same in every way to its brand-name counterpart, so it is a myth that generic brands are not as good as brand names.

The reason generic brands such as Ocella are cheaper than name brands is that there is no additional cost in marketing it. Yasmin was extensively marketed when it was first introduced, so that provided the buying impetus for Ocella. This holds true for most generic brands, so when a pharmacy is given a prescription for Yasmin, for example, Ocella is given by default unless the prescription is marked DAW 1 (Dispense as Written) or “patient requests.”

Many women who take Yasmin and then switched to Ocella have mixed feelings about it. Many would accept the substitution mainly because most health insurance companies will not cover a brand name drug if a generic version is available. Those who refuse to switch are either compelled to pay for the product out-of-pocket or have higher deductibles. In the case of Ocella, its formulation is 3 mg drospirenone with .03 ethinyl estradiol, exactly the same as for Yasmin, and the dosage instructions are also the same, down to the 7 inactive pills included in the package.

However, when generic brands are described as the same as the name brand equivalent, it means exactly that. This means that whatever goes for the name brand goes for the generic, including adverse side effects. Yasmin is currently under legal fire for causing injurious harm to its users because it significantly increases the risk of forming blood clots, thus increasing the risks for concomitant medical conditions such as deep vein thrombosis. This also means that any litigation that may apply to Yasmin will also apply to Ocella, so buyers beware.

The Extras can Kill You(r Budget)

The idea of sailing off into the sunset may seem wrought with drama or romance—depending on your mood—and that really sums up what a cruise ship vacation can be. For most of us who toil on land for most of the year, the idea of literally getting away from it all (for about 7 days, give or take) can be terribly exciting. But if you are a first-time cruiser, there are some things you need to know so that you don’t have a rude awakening when the time comes to settle up your cruise card.

All doesn’t really mean all

Most cruise ship vacation packages are described as all-inclusive, but it does not actually mean all. All-inclusive typically refers to your board and lodging, some activities, and general entertainment while you are on board. It does not include taxes or port fees, which you need to pay before you even get on the ship. This can set you back about $100, give or take, so be ready to shell that out.

Fee-based amenities

You definitely won’t starve on board or sleep in the lifeboat, but your package does not include bar drinks, some specialty restaurants or coffee shops, massages, spas, salon treatments, shore excursions, fitness classes, Internet use, laundry, or photos. For each of these amenities, you can expect to pay higher-than-usual rates. Plan to spend about 60% more on top of your package cost, so if you paid $500 for the cruise, you will probably pay an additional $300.

Tightening the belt

If you don’t have the budget for these extras, curb the impulse to let yourself go and plan accordingly. Bring enough clothes so you won’t need to have anything washed and wait until after the cruise to work off some of the meals you pigged out on. Bring your own digital camera to capture special moments rather than rely on the ship’s photographer, and arrange for Internet service via your mobile service provider if you absolutely need to go online. You can bring your own water and other beverages, but note that most ships have a strict policy against bringing alcohol onboard.

You can definitely have a wonderful time onboard a cruise ship even if you limit yourself to the package inclusions and share your cabin with two other people. The smell of the wind and feel of the sea spray on your face is free; so are sightings of the wildlife and interactions with fellow like-minded cruisers. Provided that you know what you are getting into and are prepared for it, there is nothing like the feeling of freedom that a cruise ship vacation can give you, even if it is just for a few days.

What is Risperdal?

Risperdal is one of the many medications prescribed for people suffering from schizophrenia and symptoms of bipolar disorder (also called manic depression). Children with autism are also prescribed Risperdal to help them handle the symptoms of irritability. Being an anti-psychotic medication, Risperdal functions by altering the effects of chemicals in the brain.

Risperdal is a member of a class of atypical antipsychotics, and common side effects are significant weight gain, rashes, indigestion, agitation, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting, fatigue, dizziness, anxiety, nasal congestions and coughing, upper respiratory tract infections, and many others. Although rare, some patients can also suffer from complications such as sexual dysfunction, sudden cardiac arrest, stroke, and other serious complications. Those who suffer from immediate complications after taking Risperdal, particularly signs of allergic reactions, should seek medical help. Accordingly, doctors advice their patients to stop taking Risperdal after feeling serious or alarming side effects.

Risperdal is doctor-prescribed, therefore you can only get it if your doctor believes it is necessary and beneficial for your condition. Proper check-up regarding the condition and patient’s medical history should be conducted first in order to get the medicine. If you choose to have Risperdal, it would be best to inform your doctor about possible allergic reactions you might suspect can occur. You should also inform your doctor about your other allergies, since the ingredients (whether active or inactive) can cause allergic reactions or other health complications. If you have suffered from or is prone to the following conditions, then best to talk with your doctor first before taking Risperdal: liver or kidney disease, problems swallowing, breast cancer, dementia, Parkinson’s disease, strokes, and dehydration.

Abruptly stopping your Risperdal medication can cause withdrawal symptoms and rapid relapse, therefore it is strongly advised to gradually lower the dosage and withdrawal from the drug. Taking Risperdal can make you more sensitive to extreme temperatures, so try to avoid places that are too cold or too hot, and keep yourself properly hydrated all the time. Because it can impair your processing and reaction skills, you shouldn’t drive or do activities that calls for your full attention and alertness. Don’t drink alcohol because it can only increase the side effects of Risperdal.

Recall and Regulation of the DePuy ASR Hip

The majority of hip replacement surgeries are completely beneficial to patients with a success rate of about 98%. So starting around 2008, when a large influx of failure reports surfaced, many doctors and researchers were surprised. The staggering majority of the reports were from patients who had received the DePuy ASR Hip System. DePuy Orthopaedics is a division of Johnson & Johnson. The ASR Hip System was released in the United States for medical market use starting in 2005. Both the ball and socket are manufactured with a cobalt and chromium alloy. This hip implant was the first of its kind to use these metallic materials for total hip replacement surgery.

The DePuy ASR was recalled by DePuy Orthopaedics in 2010 after a staggering amount of data confirmed the high failure rate of the implant. Many people experienced extreme discomfort within the first five years that the hip was installed. When undergoing an arthroplastic surgery like a total hip replacement, doctors are liable to make mistakes like misaligning the ball and socket. This misalignment can cause unnecessary wear to the implanted material as well as post-operative dislocation of the joint. However, many people that suffered as a result of being implanted with the DePuy hip experienced pain because of the product’s defective design, not medical negligence. Because the product’s design is flawed, there have been hundreds of DePuy hip implant lawsuits filed by individuals who have been hurt due to faulty implants.

Many doctors and researchers mention that the metallic material of the implant is not conducive to the surrounding sensitive tissue. As the muscle and tissue surrounding the acetabulum and femoral head heals from surgery, it can often be aggravated by the DePuy ASR metal shavings. The cobalt and chromium technology can increase metal ion levels in the patient’s bloodstream. Patients that have been fortunate enough to not need numerous surgeries after injuries related to the DePuy ASR are encouraged to make annual appointments with their orthopaedic physician in order to measure blood levels and check on the condition of the hip implant.

Lawsuit Accuses Former Federal Judge of Misconduct

Judge Edith Jones of the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appealsjudge tipping the scales is being accused of judicial misconduct in a lawsuit filed earlier this week.

The suit asserts that Judge Jones, who was appointed to the court by Ronald Reagan and confirmed by the senate in 1985, made discriminatory remarks about people of Hispanic and African American descent, claiming they are more prone to be involved in violence and commit crimes.

Her comments present a problem, since someone serving on such a high court should not make such impartial statements. Speaking so frankly and discounting entire groups of people as she is accused of doing diminishes public confidence in the judicial system and is contrary to a judge’s role in impartially upholding the law.

Judge Jones has multiple death penalty cases before her, with many of the defendants being of minority descent. The suit claims that her comments violate legal ethics and she should not be able to rule on these cases. Some are calling for review of her past cases as well.

It’s imperative for judges to maintain the integrity of their positions, since their decisions have serious impact on peoples’ lives.

Understanding Insurance Bad Faith

rejected insurance claims When disaster strikes people who have insurance, they should be able to expect their insurers to cover their losses and help them bounce back from calamity. That, after all, is the sole reason people pay into insurance programs in the first place.

Sadly, insurance companies are businesses and the vast majority of businesses have one goal in mind: making as much money as possible. This means insurers often give low ball offers on claims hoping  to settle them for as little money as possible. They also reject perfectly valid claims sometimes, cheating their customers out of the service they have been paying into.

Treating your customers this way is not only bad for business; it’s also illegal. Insurance is a complicated product, since there is no physical item being sold. Instead, the entire deal is tied up in the terms of the customer’s insurance policy which can be a confusing document full of snares and highly-specific language.

When insurance companies offer low payouts for large claims, it may be an indication that your insurance company is acting in bad faith. If you suspect you’ve been a victim of insurance bad faith, an attorney can help you determine what the proper course of action to take is.

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