Pandemic causing people to lose hair

In normal times, some people shed noticeable amounts of hair after a profoundly stressful experience. Now, doctors say, many patients recovering from COVID-19 are experiencing hair loss — not from the virus itself but from the physiological stress of fighting it off. Many people who never contracted the virus are also losing hair because of emotional stress from job loss, financial strain, deaths of family members or other devastating developments stemming from the pandemic. There are two types of hair loss the pandemic seems to be triggering, experts say. In one condition, called telogen effluvium, people shed much more than the typical 50 to 100 hairs per day. In healthy hair cycles, most hairs are in a growing phase, with a small percentage in a short resting phase and only about 10% of hairs in a shedding or telogen phase. But with telogen effluvium, up to 50% of hair might skip ahead to the shedding phase, with only about 40% in the growth phase. The other hair loss condition that is increasing now is alopecia areata, in which the immune system attacks hair follicles.

New York state will review any vaccines

New York state will conduct its own review of any vaccines for the coronavirus that are approved by the federal govern­ment, out of concern that the process has become too politicized, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said. “Frankly, I’m not going to trust the federal govern­ment’s opinion, and I wouldn’t recommend to New Yorkers based on the federal government’s opinion,” Cuomo said. New York officials do not play a role in the approval process for a possible vaccine, but under the current plan they would help determine how it would be distributed throughout the state. In theory, officials could delay such distribution if they believed the vaccine was not safe.

Nations trade blame over responsibility

The United States butted heads with China and Russia at the United Nations over responsibility for the pandemic, trading allegations about who mishandled and politicized the virus in one of the few real-time exchanges among top officials at this year’s COVID-distanced U.N. General Assembly meeting. The remarks at the U.N. Security Council’s ministerial meeting on the assembly’s sidelines came just after U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres decried the lack of international cooperation in tackling the still “out-of-control” coronavirus. The sharp exchanges reflected the deep divisions among the three veto-wielding council members that have escalated since the virus first emerged in the Chinese city of Wuhan in January.

Tightened lockdown in Israel as cases soar

The Israeli government said it was tightening its second national lockdown after coronavirus cases soared to about 5,000 per day in the last week, the highest rate per capita in the world. The new measures, which go into effect Friday, will remain in place at least until the end of the Jewish High Holy Days in mid-October. Most businesses and workplaces will have to close, and all gatherings, including protests and communal prayers, will be restricted to groups of up to 20 people outdoors within about 1,100 yards of home. An exception to the restrictions has been made for Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the Jewish calendar, which begins at sundown Sunday. Limited numbers of worshipers will be allowed to pray inside synagogues as they did last week for Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year.

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