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Thank your mom for your big brain, plus contagious itching and phobia therapy in this week’s news

Ecstasy ER visits up
The number of people visiting hospital emergency rooms with symptoms related to use of the illicit drug ecstasy grew by nearly 75 percent between 2004 and 2008, according to the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. ER visits for ecstasy can arise from anxiety, agitation, high blood pressure, dehydration, recklessness, blurred vision, elevated body temperature and heart or kidney failure. In 2008, 17,865 people in the United States showed up at ERs with ecstasy-related problems, compared with 10,220 in 2004, researchers note. Most of the visits involved ecstasy in combination with other drugs, the authors note. The study appears in the March 24 DAWN Report, from SAMHSA’s Drug Abuse Warning Network. —Nathan Seppa


Growth hormone plus estrogen

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