NEW YORK — A Manhattan federal prosecutor dining al fresco and a nearby pedestrian both dodged stray bullets after a gunman opened fire on a Brooklyn spring evening, police said Saturday as the city's gun violence numbers continue to mount. Assistant U.S. Attorney Mollie Bracewell, 34, was eating outside the Thai restaurant Muse on Washington Avenue in Prospect Heights when she was grazed across the face and cheek by a bullet fragment at 9 p.m. on Friday, police said. The second victim, 31-year-old Benjamin Bustamante, was walking with his wife when struck by a bullet in the right foot as the couple r...
Contrary to myths circulating on social media, COVID-19 vaccines do not cause erectile dysfunction and male infertility.
What is true: SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, poses a risk for both disorders.
Until now, little research has been done on how the virus or the vaccines affect the male reproductive system. But recent investigations by physicians and researchers here at the University of Miami have shed new light on these questions.
The team, which includes me, has discovered potentially far-reaching implications for men of all ages – including younger and middle-aged men who want to have children.
What the team found
I am the director of the Reproductive Urology Program at the University of Miami's Miller School of Medicine. My colleagues and I analyzed the autopsy tissues of the testicles of six men who died of COVID-19 infection.
The result: COVID-19 virus appeared in the tissues of one of the men; decreased numbers of sperm appeared in three.
Another patient – this one survived COVID-19 – had a testis biopsy about three months after his initial COVID-19 infection cleared up. The biopsy showed the coronavirus was still in his testicles.
Our team also discovered that COVID-19 affects the penis. An analysis of penile tissue from two men receiving penile implants showed the virus was present seven to nine months after their COVID-19 diagnosis. Both men had developed severe erectile dysfunction, probably because the infection caused reduced blood supply to the penis.
Notably, one of the men had only mild COVID-19 symptoms. The other had been hospitalized. This suggests that even those with a relatively light case of the virus can experience severe erectile dysfunction after recovery.
These findings are not entirely surprising. After all, scientists know other viruses invade the testicles and affect sperm production and fertility.
One example: Investigators studying testes tissues from six patients who died from the 2006 SARS-CoV virus found all of them had widespread cell destruction, with few to no sperm.
A new study on vaccine safety
Additional research by my team brought welcome news. A study of 45 men showed the Pfizer and Moderna mRNA vaccines appear safe for the male reproductive system.
This, then, is another reason to get the vaccinations – to preserve male fertility and sexual function.
Granted, the research is only a first step on how COVID-19 might affect male sexual health; the samples were small. Studies should continue.
Still, for men who have had COVID-19 and then experienced testicular pain, it is reasonable to consider that the virus has invaded testes tissue. Erectile dysfunction can be the result. Those men should see a urologist.
I also believe the research presents an urgent public health message to the U.S. regarding the COVID-19 vaccines.
For the millions of American men who remain unvaccinated, you may want to again consider the consequences if and when this highly aggressive virus finds you.
One reason for vaccine hesitancy is the perception among many that COVID-19 shots might affect male fertility. Our research shows the opposite. There is no evidence the vaccine harms a man's reproductive system. But ignoring the vaccine and contracting COVID-19 very well could.
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'Sellout' Ron DeSantis faces backlash from some of his supporters after changing his tune on vaccinations
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has been a devout Trump supporter, and many pundits have described him as the Republican who would be the most likely to win the 2024 GOP presidential nomination if former President Donald Trump doesn't run. But DeSantis is now coming under fire from anti-vax extremists on the far right for urging Floridians to get vaccinated from the COVID-19 coronavirus.
Politico reporter Matt Dixon explains, "Florida's COVID crisis has wedged Gov. Ron DeSantis between two competing forces: public health experts who urge him to do more and anti-vaxxers who want him to do less. The Republican governor has come under attack from the medical community and Democrats as the Delta strain of COVID-19 sweeps through Florida, turning it into a national coronavirus hotspot."
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in five new COVID-19 infections in the United States is in Florida. But that isn't preventing the anti-vaxxers in Trumpworld from saying that DeSantis has betrayed the MAGA cause by encouraging vaccination for COVID-19.
DeSantis, according to Dixon, is now "facing a backlash from the anti-vaccination wing of his political base." Former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, for example, criticized DeSantis during an appearance on the talk show "The Right Side with Doug Billings" — saying, "Don't let political correctness get in the way of health choices." And right-wing radio host Stew Peters called DeSantis a "sellout."
But at the same time, some Florida-based health experts believe that with the Delta variant raging in the Sunshine State, the last thing DeSantis should be doing is criticizing expert immunologist Dr. Anthony Fauci in order to score cheap political points in MAGA World.
CBSMiami.com quotes Bernard Ashby, a Miami-based cardiologist and leader of the Florida chapter of the Committee to Protect Health Care, as saying, "While hospitals in our state were filling up, DeSantis was shouting about 'Freedom over Faucism.' If DeSantis were as concerned about stopping COVID-19 spread as he was about coming up with these clever jabs about Dr. Fauci, we might not be in this position."
Mona Mangat, an immunologist in St. Petersburg, Florida, has criticisms of DeSantis as well. CBSMiami.com quotes Mangat as saying, "At the same time as DeSantis says the vaccines are effective — which they are — he's also banning businesses from requiring proof of vaccination. He has taken away private companies' ability to protect their employees and customers by requiring the safe and readily available vaccine."
The Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol featured emotional testimony from four officers who fought off insurrectionists at the U.S. Capitol on January 6th and the makeup of the panel could spell trouble for Donald Trump, according to Punchbowl News reporter Jake Sherman.
U.S. Capitol Police officer Sgt. Aquilino Gonell, officer Harry Dunn, D.C. Metropolitan Police Department officer Michael Fanone, and officer Daniel Hodges testified before the committee, which only includes two Republicans after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi rejected GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy's nominations.
In her opening remarks, Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) described herself by saying, "I have been a conservative Republican since 1984 when I first voted for Ronald Reagan." Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) said, "I am a Republican, I am a conservative, but in order to heal from the damage caused that day, we need to call out the facts. It's time to stop the outrage and conspiracies that fuel violence and division in our country, and most importantly, we need to reject those that promote it."
Sherman explained to Chuck Todd on MSNBC on Tuesday that former President Donald Trump likely isn't happy to see that there are two members of the committee identifying as conservative Republicans who are not interested in defending him.
"If I were Donald Trump, Chuck, I would be less than pleased that this is going down without any sort of meaningful rebuttal, although I am not sure what you can deflect because the facts are so clear. Nothing from his wing of the party at all," he explained.
Jake Sherman www.youtube.com
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