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Monday, May 11, 2009

Low Cost Prescription Drugs & New Autism Study

To celebrate Mother's Day, I decided to give myself a week off from writing anything too technical. Instead, here are some little tidbits of, perhaps, interesting information.

Wal-Mart is expanding its discount prescription drug program. As some people may know, not all pharmacies charge the same amount for the same prescription medication. Wal-Mart has some of the lowest drug prices. Hundreds of prescription medications are available for only $4 for a 30-day supply. There are 300 medications for which a 3-month supply is only $10 and many other medications that are available for a slightly higher price. No Wal-Mart near you? Not to worry, you may soon be able to order prescription medications from Wal-Mart through the mail. Until then, most pharmacies will tell you over the phone how much it will cost to fill a specific prescription. So, if you are filling an expensive prescription it may pay to shop around.

CNN had a very interesting article on its website this Monday regarding autism and a new study which reported that children with autism have an enlarged amygdala. The amygdala, which is a part of the brain, is a normal size at birth but then for some unknown reason in children with autism it begins to grow. This increase in size may explain why children with autism have difficulty with what is known as "joint attention." Difficulty with joint attention is a hallmark feature of autism. This study is very promising and will most likely lead to further research to determine when and why the amygdala begins to rapidly increase in size. Pinpointing when this change in the brain begins may allow us to figure out what the trigger is and hopefully how to prevent or treat it.

On a closing note, I hope that all the mothers reading my blog had a lovely Mother's Day!