On Heels Of Foreign Policy Change Speech, Obama Drone Strikes In Sovereign Nations Continue

Did you catch President Barack Obama’s first major speech on counterterrorism of his second term last Thursday? Well if you didn’t, all you need to know is that it only took the Administration six days to let Americans know—as if they didn’t already— that what the President says and what his Administration does are very, very, different.

Representative of a dramatic shift in the Obama Administration’s approach to foreign policy, the President claimed he was working to restrict the use of unmanned drone strikes.

Some key quotes from the speech:

“Beyond the Afghan theater, we only target al-Qaida and its associated forces. And even then, the use of drones is heavily constrained.”

The Administration much prefers to “detain” terror suspects.

It also has “respect for state sovereignty” and other nations’ ability to handle terrorists.

And a subsequently released fact sheet sealed the deal, saying, “[T]he United States will use lethal force only against a target that poses a continuing, imminent threat to U.S. persons. It is simply not the case that all terrorists pose a continuing, imminent threat to U.S. persons; if a terrorist does not pose such a threat, the United States will not use lethal force.”

Behold, via CNN:

The Pakistan Taliban’s No. 2 leader was killed in a drone strike Wednesday in the country’s tribal region, a local tribal official and an intelligence official confirmed to CNN.

He was Wali-Ur Rehman Mehsud — second in command to Hakimullah Mehsud, the militant group’s leader. The Pakistan Taliban’s spokesman told CNN he could neither confirm nor deny the information. The sources said Rehman was killed along with his close aide, Fakhar-ul-Islam, and two Uzbek nationals whose identities the sources didn’t know.

This is the same strike reported earlier by intelligence officials in Pakistan, who said seven people were killed and one other was injured in the attack at a compound near the town of Miranshah in the North Waziristan district.

Pakistani officials criticized the strike in a statement, saying the U.S. drone strikes “are counter-productive, entail loss of innocent civilian lives, have human rights and humanitarian implications and violate the principles of national sovereignty, territorial integrity and international law.”

Test: Most ‘Honey’ Isn’t Real

A recent test by Food Safety News reveals that three-fourths of the “honey” mass produced and sold in chain supermarkets isn’t, technically, real honey.

That’s because the removal of microscopic pollen particles takes away the ability of food inspectors to determine the source, and the safety, of the modified product. And the majority of grocery store honey is exactly that: modified. Most honey sold in the U.S. is put through a process called “ultra filtering” before it hits the shelves, and that removes honey’s signature ingredient – pollen.

According to the study:

Ultra filtering is a high-tech procedure where honey is heated, sometimes watered down and then forced at high pressure through extremely small filters to remove pollen, which is the only foolproof sign identifying the source of the honey. It is a spin-off of a technique refined by the Chinese, who have illegally dumped tons of their honey – some containing illegal antibiotics – on the U.S. market for years.

Here’s a listing of the brands that didn’t make the cut:

HONEEEEEEY

Federal Scrutiny On Bitcoin Ramps Up

Directly on the heels of a Federal assault on the alternative currency Liberty Reserve, Federal regulators are discussing more oversight of Bitcoin and other virtual currencies.

“It’s gotten to a level where I think for us not to take notice and to try and make some sort of determination about what to do would be irresponsible,” said Bart Chilton, a commissioner on the Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) told The Hill.

Writing for Forbes, contributor Tim Worstall explains how Federal officials can destroy any alternative currency with bureaucracy:

Almost anyone at all in that international financial system has a connection into the US one. And if the US bureaucracy that oversees that US financial system decides that it doesn’t like people who deal with Bitcoin, or even doesn’t like people who deal with people who deal with Bitcoin, then Bitcoin just won’t have access to the international financial system. It’s not a matter of pure legality either. Bitcoin itself certainly isn’t illegal, paying for something with it isn’t, changing $ into $B isn’t and so on. But there are enough regulations about who may do what with whom in the financial system that any determined bureaucracy can freeze someone out of it.

Texas Set To Approve E-Privacy Protections Stronger Than Federal Law

A bill awaiting Texas Governor Rick Perry’s signature would put the Lone Star State ahead of Congress in protecting the privacy of citizens whose emails, thanks to an existing legal loophole, are currently subject to warrantless seizure.

The law, already approved by both chambers of the State Legislature, follows reforms recommended to Congress by privacy advocates with ties to technological industries. If approved by Perry, it would close a loophole that currently allows law enforcement to seize unopened emails 180 days old (or older), as well as all opened emails, simply by acquiring an administrative subpoena. Instead, investigators would be forced to obtain a search warrant before snooping through any private emails.

Congress is currently considering similar reforms to the 27-year-old Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA), but has not yet approved an amended version that emerged from the Senate Judiciary Committee in late April.

Still missing from the final version of the Texas law is a recommended requirement that police obtain a search warrant before tracking residents’ locations through their cellphones’ geolocation data.

Jay Carney Joke Of The Day: IRS Testimony Was Satisfying

Though Democratic and Republican lawmakers alike have expressed disdain over Internal Revenue Service officials’ dodgy answers to Congressional questions about the agency’s undue targeting of conservative groups, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney is satisfied with the responsiveness of the IRS to the matters of Congressional interest.

Lois Lerner, director of the IRS division in charge of the controversial program, invoked the 5th Amendment and refused to testify.

Former IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman was then grilled, but largely gave the same answers Senate lawmakers heard at an earlier hearing during which they threatened to appoint a special prosecutor if witnesses did not start to open up.

Of course, the White House is satisfied; that’s how a cover-up works.

 

Tornado-Themed ‘Mike & Molly’ Episode To Air Thursday

LOS ANGELES,  (UPI) —  The Season 3 finale of the U.S. sitcom “Mike & Molly,” which was postponed after last week’s tornado, has been rescheduled for Thursday, CBS said.

“Mike and Carl get stuck working at the renaissance faire as a tornado approaches Chicago,” a synopsis of the episode said.

Starring Billy Gardell and Melissa McCarthy as the title characters, the show was initially to air last week, but was postponed following the deadly tornado in Moore, Okla.

Gerald McRaney guest stars in the episode as Police Capt. Patrick Murphy, Mike’s boss, and series regular Reno Wilson plays Carl.

Tea Kettle Said To Look Like Hitler Quickly Sells Out

KEMMERER, Wyo., (UPI) —  Wyoming-based retailer JC Penney quickly sold out of a tea kettle on its website after online commentators noted its resemblance to Adolf Hitler.

The kettle, which a Reddit user first said resembled the Nazi leader during the weekend due to the negative space created by its Hitler-hair-shaped handle, went viral and was sold out on the retailer’s website by Tuesday afternoon, Time.com reported Wednesday.

The kettle was the only one of 31 different styles of tea kettle on the retailer’s website to be sold out Tuesday.

JC Penney did not respond to messages about the product, Time.com said. However, the issue was addressed on the company’s Twitter page, where the resemblance to Hitler was explained as unintentional.

“If we had designed it to look like something, we would have gone with a snowman or something fun,” the tweet read.

Mom Finds Baby Photos From Lost Roll Of Film On Facebook

VICTORIA, British Columbia, (UPI) —  A Canadian woman said social media reunited her with a roll of film, which contained photographs of her newborn daughter, stolen nine years ago.

The canister of undeveloped film was found on a roadside near Victoria, British Columbia, this month by Helen Maslyk, who had stopped her car to deal with a tire problem. She had the film developed and posted the photos on Facebook to find the owner, the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. reported Tuesday.

The photos, lost during a vehicle break-in, were discovered by their owner Ann Perry-Smith.

“My jaw just dropped. There’s a picture of my husband, my baby who’s only weeks old at the time, and my dog,’ she said.

Perry-Smith said her daughter, now 9, was happy but not surprised that social media brought the family and the photos together.

29-Member Wedding Party Plunges Into Lake

GAINESVILLE, Ga., (UPI) —  A pair of Georgia newlyweds and their wedding party said they had a sense of humor about falling into a lake during a photo shoot after the ceremony.

Frank and Tricia Fearon said they were posing with their 29 bridesmaids and groomsmen on a dock following the May 18 ceremony when the structure collapsed and plunged the entire party into Lake Lanier, ABC News reported Tuesday.

“The entire wedding party flips 90 degrees and just dumps all of us in the lake, suits, dresses and everything,” Frank Fearon said.

Tricia Fearon said the party had initially considered themselves fortunate for beating a 60 percent chance of rain.

“It seemed magical that the rain held off,” she told “Good Morning America.” “It didn’t matter because we all got dumped in the lake anyways.”

The plunge was captured on video by the wedding’s videographer and posted to YouTube.

The couple said one bridesmaid suffered a fractured humerus and a dislocated shoulder. The rest of the party escaped with only minor bruises, they said.

The newlyweds said they didn’t consider their wedding to have been ruined by the incident.

“No one complained even though a lot of iPhones were damaged,” Frank Fearon said.  “All of them laughed it off, went and got toweled off and danced the night away.”

“This was not a ruined wedding,” Tricia Fearon said. “A million people came up to us and said this was the best wedding they’d ever been to.”

“It was a blast,” she said. “We had a lot of fun.”

Horse Rescued From California Well

SAN RAFAEL, Calif., (UPI) —  Authorities in California said rescuers used a crane to pull a horse from a well filled with 20 feet of water.

The San Rafael Fire Department said occupants of a small ranch arrived home just after 4 p.m. Monday and discovered their horse, Buddy, had fallen into a brick-lined well near China Camp State Park and was at least 5 feet below ground level and floating in about 20 feet of water, the Marin (Calif.) Independent Journal reported Tuesday.

Firefighters responded at about 4:30 p.m. and called in Ad-Lite Crane Services Novato and the Marin County sheriff’s horse posse rescue unit for assistance.

A group of about two dozen rescuers worked to get a harness around the horse and more water was pumped into the well to bring the animal closer to the surface.

The crew, using the crane, was able to lift the horse to dry land around 6:30 p.m., authorities said.

“It was unclear how long the horse had been in the well,” San Rafael fire Battalion Chief Jeff Rowan said. “Someone came home and found it. It was floating but getting tired and frustrated.”

Tablet Computers Set To Take Over Mobile PC Market By End Of The Year

FRAMINGHAM, Mass. (UPI) — Tablet computers will dominate the mobile PC market by the end of this year and could top the entire PC market by the year 2015, a U.S. tech research firm says.

“Tablets surpassing portables in 2013, and total PCs in 2015, marks a significant change in consumer attitudes about compute devices and the applications and ecosystems that power them,” Ryan Reith, program manager for IDC’s Mobility Trackers, said.

“IDC continues to believe that PCs will have an important role in this new era of computing, especially among business users,” he said. “But for many consumers, a tablet is a simple and elegant solution for core use cases that were previously addressed by the PC.”

IDC estimated tablet shipments would grow 58.7 percent year-over-year in 2013, reaching 229.3 million units worldwide, Slash Gear reported Tuesday.

The growth in tablet sales in being driven in large part by a drop in prices, IDC said, with the worldwide average selling price for tablets expected to drop this year to $381, a 10 percent decrease from 2012.

Student Questioned After Gun Goes Off Inside Backpack

MINNEAPOLIS, (UPI) —  A Minnesota grade school student has been questioned by police after officials said a handgun in his backpack accidentally discharged near the end of class.

No one was injured when the gun went off Tuesday afternoon as the 3rd grader stood outside Bethune Community School in Minneapolis, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reported.

The incident occurred 10 minutes before the end of the school day, and most students were still inside, said Minneapolis Public School spokeswoman Rachel Hicks.

Federal guidelines call for school districts to expel students who bring a firearm on school grounds, but Hicks said the district superintendent has some discretion.

The student’s identity was not released and the incident remains under investigation.

U.S. Retailers Have An Off Week

NEW YORK (UPI) — U.S. retail receipts slipped in the week ending Friday, dropping for the third week out of the past four, the International Council of Shopping Centers said.

The ICSC-Goldman Sachs weekly tracking report indicated sales dropped 0.9 percent from the previous week, although sales rose 2.8 percent from the same week of 2012.

The weekly retail survey released Wednesday said demand was stronger at department, clothing and electronics stores, but “considerably softer at discounters and wholesale clubs.”

Weather Trends International said the week was slightly cooler than the same period of 2012, but 0.5 degrees Fahrenheit above the historic average for the week.

The Energy Information Administration said the national average price of gasoline fell to $3.645 per gallon in the week, which is 0.7 percent lower than the same week of 2012.

In theory, falling gasoline prices can allow for more spending elsewhere. The price of gasoline “can affect discretionary income and spending,” the trade group said.

Mortgage Activity Slows As Rates Rise

WASHINGTON (UPI) — U.S. mortgage activity fell for the second consecutive week, as interest rates continued to climb, the Mortgage Bankers Association said Wednesday.

The association said mortgage activity fell 8.8 percent in the week while refinancing activity dropped 12 percent in the week ending Friday.

Interest rates for 30-year, fixed-rate conforming mortgages increased from 3.78 percent to 3.9 percent during the week, the highest rate in 12 months.

Points for 30-year conforming loans were unchanged at 0.39.

The average interest rate for 30-year contracts on jumbo loans — larger than $417,500 — rose from 3.93 percent to 4.07 percent, the highest rate in nine months. Points for 30-year jumbo loans fell from 0.36 to 0.27.

Interest rates for 15-year, fixed-rate mortgages rose from 2.96 percent to 3.1 percent, also hitting the highest level in nine months. Points for 15-year, fixed-rate contracts fell from 0.32 to 0.3.

The average rate for 30-year loans backed by the Federal Housing Administration rose from 3.53 percent to 3.62 percent, a nine-month high, with points rising from 0.13 to 0.27.

The average rate for short-term, adjustable-rate mortgages held steady at 2.6 percent. Points for short-term adjustable-rate loans rose to 0.24 from 0.23, the MBA said.

Eurozone Leading Indicators Up Slightly

BRUSSELS (UPI) — The Leading Economic Index for the 17 nations that share the euro as currency rose marginally in April, the Conference Board said Wednesday.

The index, which fell 0.2 percent February and March, rose 0.1 percent in April, the research firm said.

The index is a comparison to the average monthly index in 2004, which was assigned an index value of 100.

The 0.1 percent gain for April was not enough to declare a turnaround for the eurozone, Conference Board economist Bert Colijn said. “After two months of declines,” he said in a statement, the “economic environment remains sluggish.”

“Confidence among businesses and consumers continues to be weak with unemployment continuing to increase while investments are not picking up,” he said.

In the eurozone the “bright spot,” is the service sector, Colijn said.

In the service sector, expectations have risen in five of the past six months, the Conference Board said.

Gallup: Small Business Hiring Remains ‘Anemic’

PRINCETON, N.J. (UPI) — Researchers at survey firm Gallup said hiring among small U.S. businesses remained consistent over the past year at a net negative level.

In a survey of 603 small business owners conducted April 1-5, Gallup said 11 percent indicated their company had added workers within the past 12 months, while 23 percent indicated they had dropped workers over the past year.

That left the hiring index for small businesses at minus 12 in April, which is “on par with minus 10 in January and minus nine in April 2012,” Gallup said in a report released Tuesday.

Hiring intentions for the future came out with a slightly improved measure. When business owners were asked if they intended to hire or drop workers in the next 12 months, 20 percent indicated they expected to hire, while 14 percent indicated they would let some workers go, Gallup said.

That left the hiring expectations index among small business owners at plus six, Gallup said.

Despite the surge on Wall Street, hiring intentions among small-business-owners “remains anemic,” Gallup said.

Gallup said the results of the survey include a margin of error of plus or minus four percentage points.

For purposes of the survey, Gallup defines a small business as one with $20 million or less in sales or revenue per year.

Southern Baptists Expected To Leave Boy Scouts

NASHVILLE,  (UPI) —  A Southern Baptist leader says the church will probably cut its ties to the Boy Scouts of America following the group’s decision to allow gay Scouts.

Frank Page, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s executive committee, told ABCNews.com the Scouts will be discussed at the national meeting in two weeks.

“I think I can say with pretty strong accuracy that the vast majority of Southern Baptists are very disappointed in the latest change in policy … deeply disappointed,” Page said.

The Boy Scouts decided last week to continue its policy of barring openly gay adults from serving as volunteer leaders or paid staff. About 70 percent of Scout troops are sponsored by religious groups.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints backed the group’s decision to change its policy, which was also supported by he National Jewish Committee on Scouting, the Episcopal Church, the United Church of Christ, the Unitarian Universalist Association and the Metropolitan Community Church. The Catholic Church plans to discuss the new policy before it takes effect Jan. 1.

Page said the Southern Baptists, the largest Protestant group in the United States, sponsors hundreds of Boy Scout troops.

The Assemblies of God, the biggest Pentecostal group, issued a statement immediately after the decision predicting a “mass exodus.”

Swimming Lessons The Best Way To Prevent Drowning In Kids

ATLANTA (UPI) — When a child begins swimming lessons should be based on a child’s exposure to water, maturity, physical limitations and health concerns, U.S. officials say.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says participation in formal swimming lessons can reduce the risk of drowning by as much as 88 percent among young children age 1-4, who are at greatest risk of drowning.

The American Academy of Pediatrics supports swimming lessons as young as age 1.

Even in a pool, inexperienced swimmers and young children may benefit from wearing properly fitted life jackets, the CDC says.

Do not use air-filled or foam toys, such as “water wings,” “noodles,” or inner-tubes, in place of life jackets for flotation support — these are toys and are not designed to keep swimmers safe, the CDC says.

“Most young children who drowned in pools were last seen in the home, had been out of sight less than 5 minutes, and were in the care of one or both parents at the time,” the CDC says.

Children should never be in or around a pool alone. Barriers to pool access should be used to help prevent young children from gaining access to the pool area without caregivers’ awareness.

Examples of barriers include: four-sided isolation fencing, door locks, gate locks and alarms triggered when someone enters the water.

Most Patients Prefer To Make Medical Decisions With Doctor

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (UPI) — Most U.S. patients prefer to be actively involved in their medical decision-making with their doctor, researchers say.

Dr. Harlan M. Krumholz of the Yale University School of Medicine and colleagues said they sought to investigate preferences for participation in the decision-making process among individuals hospitalized with an acute myocardial infarction or heart attack.

The researchers combined data from two similar heart attack registries which resulted in 6,636 patients in the study sample. The heart attack patients were asked about who should make decisions on treatment options.

“More than two-thirds of patients with a heart attack indicated a preference to play an active role in the decision-making process, and of those, about a quarter preferred that the decision be theirs alone rather than shared with their physician,” the authors wrote in the study. “Our findings indicates physicians who aspire to provide patient-centered care should assess patients’ decision-making preferences by directly asking each patient.”

The findings were published in the journal Internal Medicine.

U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann Won’t Seek Re-Election

WASHINGTON, (UPI) —  U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., a Tea Party movement leader in Congress, announced Wednesday she wouldn’t seek re-election.

“After a great deal of thought and deliberation, I have decided next year I will not seek a fifth congressional term,” Bachmann said in a video posted on her campaign website. “After serious consideration, I am confident this is the right decision.”

She said the constitutional limit of eight years in office imposed on the president also was “long enough for an individual to serve as a representative for a specific congressional district.”

Bachmann said her decision not to seek re-election wasn’t influenced by questions about whether she could win re-election nor “impacted in any way” about inquiries about her 2012 presidential campaign and presidential campaign staff.

Bachmann had sought the Republican Party presidential nomination in 2012, winning the Ames, Iowa, straw poll, before falling behind in the state’s caucuses. Her presidential bid prompted an ethics investigation into alleged improper payments to campaign consultants.

Bachmann slogged through a tough congressional race last year, besting her Democratic challenger, hotelier Jim Graves, by 4,300 votes. Graves announced last month that he would run again for Minnesota’s 6th Congressional District.

“I’ve never considered holding public office an occupation,” Bachmann said in the video and pledged to fight for conservative causes for the next 18 months. “I’ve always considered it to be an honor and privilege.”

Thanking her husband, children, foster children and constituents, Bachmann said her future “is full. It is limitless and my passion for America remains.”

Heart Failure Hospitalization Odds Worst In January, Fridays, Night

LISBON, Portugal (UPI) — Those with heart failure admitted to the hospital in January, on a Friday and at night have the worst odds of survival, a U.S. researcher says.

Dr. David P. Kao of the University of Colorado School of Medicine and colleagues analyzed nearly 1 million heart failure admissions over 14 years and identified peaks in admissions and mortality.

Seasonal, weekly and hourly variations had been observed in heart failure admissions but the reasons are unclear, Kao said.

Data from all hospitals in the state of New York from 1994-2007 were analyzed. A greater number of factors were included in the analysis than before so that the researchers could confirm or refute previous theories on the reasons behind variations in heart failure morbidity and mortality, Kao said.

The study found daily heart failure admissions increased significantly in January, Fridays and at night. Conversely, the odds were better on Mondays and being admitted in the morning.

“The fact that patients admitted right before the weekend and in the middle of the night do worse and are in the hospital longer suggests that staffing levels may contribute to the findings,” Kao said in a statement.

The findings were presented at the Heart Failure Congress in Lisbon.

Vatican Reverses Francis, Says Atheists Still Going To Hell

VATICAN CITY, (UPI) —  The Vatican retracted Pope Francis’ statement that everyone, “even the atheists,” were saved from sin and redeemed by God and therefore welcome in heaven.

People who know about the Catholic Church “cannot be saved” if they “refuse to enter her or remain in her,” Vatican spokesman the Rev. Thomas Rosica said in an “explanatory note.”

At the same time, people “who through no fault of their own do not know the Gospel of Christ and his church but sincerely seek God and, moved by grace, try to do his will as it is known through the dictates of conscience can attain eternal salvation,” Rosica wrote.

He added, “No person is excluded from salvation simply because of so-called original sin; one can only lose their salvation through serious personal sin of their own account.”

Francis made headlines when he said in a May 22 homily: “The Lord has redeemed all of us, all of us, with the blood of Christ — all of us, not just Catholics. Everyone!

“‘Father, the atheists?'” Francis said as if asking himself. “Even the atheists. Everyone!” Francis said in answering his Socratic-style question.

“And this blood makes us children of God of the first class!” Francis said. “We are created children in the likeness of God, and the blood of Christ has redeemed us all! And we all have a duty to do good. And this commandment for everyone to do good, I think, is a beautiful path towards peace.

“If we, each doing our own part, if we do good to others, if we meet there, doing good, and we go slowly, gently, little by little, we will make that culture of encounter — we need that so much. We must meet one another doing good,” Francis said.

“‘But I don’t believe, Father, I am an atheist!'” Francis said, again speaking as if he were someone else. “But do good — we will meet one another there,” Francis said in response.

Atheist Hemant Mehta wrote in his Friendly Atheist blog: “Atheists, according to Christians, are going to hell unless we accept Christ’s divinity. We already knew that. It was still an unusual and welcome gesture from the pope to recognize that everyone, regardless of beliefs, can do good and ‘be saved’ — at least it was a step up from what we’re used to hearing.”

British evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins, known for advocating atheism and science, wrote on Twitter: “Atheists go to heaven? Nope. Sorry world, infallible pope got it wrong. Vatican steps in with alacrity.”

“Conversations With God” author Neale Donald Walsch told United Press International Tuesday evening: “It is regrettable that the hidden hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church chose to officially retract the recent statement on eternal damnation bravely made by its new leader, Pope Francis. This rapid retrenchment wiped out what appeared to be one of the major advances in theological thinking within that institution in the past 500 years.”

Heart Failure Accelerates Male ‘Menopause’

LISBON, Portugal (UPI) — Heart failure accelerates the aging process and may bring on early andropausal syndrome — male “menopause,” Polish researchers say.

Professor Ewa A. Jankowska of the Wroclaw Medical University in Poland said as men get older they are more likely to suffer from andropausal syndrome, also called menopause, or a deficiency in the male sex hormones such as testosterone.

The symptoms of andropausal syndrome can be divided into three categories: sexual, psychological and somato-vegetative.

Sexual symptoms include: erectile dysfunction, problems with libido, decrease in beard growth, feelings of “having passed the zenith of life;” psychological symptoms include feeling discouraged, depressed, irritable, anxious, nervous; and somato-vegetative include joint and muscle complaints, sweating, need for more sleep, sleep disturbances, weakness, exhaustion.

“Andropausal syndrome leads to poor quality of life. We wanted to discover whether heart failure increases  andropausal syndrome and whether additional androgen therapies could improve quality of life in heart failure patients,” Jankowska said in a statement.

The researchers compared the prevalence and the severity of andropausal symptoms among 232 men with systolic heart failure ages 40-80 and 362 age-matched healthy peers.

The study found andropausal syndrome affected almost one-third of men with heart failure, regardless of their age group. In men ages 40-59, heart failure led to a four-fold increase in the prevalence of andropausal syndrome and an increase in the severity of sexual and somato-vegetative andropausal symptoms. Men ages 60-80 with and without heart failure had a similar prevalence of andropausal syndrome and severity of andropausal symptoms, the study said.

The study authors concluded heart failure accelerated the natural process of aging and favors early onset of andropausal syndrome.

The findings were presented at the Heart Failure Congress in Lisbon.