Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Gastroenterology for April 2010. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal articles, as well as the FDA approvals and regulatory changes that are the most likely to affect clinical practice.
Hepatitis C May Have Causal Role in Insulin Resistance
THURSDAY, April 29 (HealthDay News) -- Suppression of hepatitis C virus (HCV) is associated with improved insulin resistance (IR), suggesting that the virus may play a causal role in IR, according to research published in the May issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.
CBT Rapid Responders More Likely Maintain Gains in IBS
THURSDAY, April 29 (HealthDay News) -- Many irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) patients who undergo cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) experience a positive response within four weeks, and these rapid responders are more likely to maintain their treatment gains than those who do not have a rapid response, according to a study in the May issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.
Hep C Therapy Less Effective in Urban Minorities Than Thought
THURSDAY, April 29 (HealthDay News) -- Pegylated interferon and ribavirin -- the standard hepatitis C treatment -- is not as effective in urban minority patients who are treated in clinical practice as is implied by phase III trials, according to a study in the April issue of Hepatology.
Vitamin E May Be Helpful in Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis
WEDNESDAY, April 28 (HealthDay News) -- Vitamin E may be an effective treatment for nonalcoholic steatohepatitis in adults without diabetes, and pioglitazone also has some benefits in treating the disease, according to research published online April 28 in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Risk Factors for Physician Misconduct Identified
WEDNESDAY, April 28 (HealthDay News) -- Doctors who are male, are from lower socioeconomic groups or had academic difficulties in medical school may be at increased risk of professional misconduct, according to a study published online April 27 in BMJ.
Single Flexible Sigmoidoscopy Screening Found Beneficial
WEDNESDAY, April 28 (HealthDay News) -- The use of a single flexible sigmoidoscopy examination in individuals between the ages of 55 and 64 provides long-term benefits, according to research published online April 28 in The Lancet.
FDA Changes Medical Device Advisory Committee Process
TUESDAY, April 27 (HealthDay News) -- Because of the increasing number of medical device advisory panel meetings in recent years, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is changing the way expert panels review and discuss information during public hearings on devices that are being reviewed for premarket approval.
Interruptions Increase Medication Errors by Nurses
TUESDAY, April 27 (HealthDay News) -- Nurses who are interrupted in the process of preparing and administering medications are more likely to make an error, with error severity increasing with the number of interruptions, according to a study in the April 26 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.
Financial Ties Negatively Affect Perceptions of Research Quality
TUESDAY, April 27 (HealthDay News) -- Disclosure of financial ties to industry influences patients', physicians', and research participants' beliefs about the quality of research evidence, according to a review published in the April 26 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.
Most Doctors Not Knowledgeable About Herbals
MONDAY, April 26 (HealthDay News) -- Most physicians are not knowledgeable about herbal medicines and believe the general public is poorly informed as well, according to the results of a survey published in the April issue of the Drug and Therapeutics Bulletin.
Lactose-Intolerant Can Tolerate Cup of Milk Daily
THURSDAY, April 22 (HealthDay News) -- Most people with presumed lactose intolerance or malabsorption can tolerate about a cup of milk daily, according to research published online April 19 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.
FDA Adds Boxed Warning to Propylthiouracil Label
THURSDAY, April 22 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has added a boxed warning to the label of propylthiouracil due to the risk of serious liver injury -- which in some cases may be fatal -- in adult and pediatric patients.
Step-Up Approach Beneficial in Necrotizing Pancreatitis
WEDNESDAY, April 21 (HealthDay News) -- Among patients with necrotizing pancreatitis and infected necrotic tissue, a minimally invasive step-up approach may effectively reduce the rate of major complications or death compared with open necrosectomy, according to a study published in the April 22 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.
Non-Teaching Hospitals Found Superior for Colon Resection
WEDNESDAY, April 21 (HealthDay News) -- For colon resections across the spectrum of disease -- including benign disease -- the volume-outcome relationship favors non-teaching hospitals over teaching hospitals, according to research published in the April issue of the Archives of Surgery.
Review Finds Surprisingly High Death Rate for Kids' Choking
MONDAY, April 19 (HealthDay News) -- Hospital admissions for airway foreign body and esophageal foreign body airway obstruction in pediatric patients occur infrequently, but are associated with a surprisingly high mortality rate, according to a review published in the April issue of the Archives of Otolaryngology -- Head & Neck Surgery.
Drug Ups Liver Cancer Patients' Survival After Transplant
MONDAY, April 19 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), sirolimus-based immunosuppression protocols are associated with significantly improved survival rates after liver transplantation, according to research published in the April issue of Hepatology.
Incidences of E. Coli, Shigella Foodborne Infections Drop in '09
THURSDAY, April 15 (HealthDay News) -- In 2009, there was a decreased incidence of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) O157 and Shigella foodborne infections compared with the preceding three years, though little progress has been made in infection rates of other foodborne pathogens, according to a report in the April 16 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
Many Physicians Using Inappropriate FOBT Methods
THURSDAY, April 15 (HealthDay News) -- Many physicians who use the fecal occult blood test (FOBT) for colorectal cancer screening administer the test in-office rather than using home-based tests, which are recommended by national guidelines, according to research published online April 10 in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.
Infliximab-Based Strategies Beneficial in Crohn's Disease
WEDNESDAY, April 14 (HealthDay News) -- Compared to azathioprine alone, the use of infliximab or infliximab plus azathioprine is associated with a greater likelihood of corticosteroid-free clinical remission in patients with moderate to severe Crohn's disease, according to research published in the April 15 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.
Deficiencies in Colorectal Cancer Screening Addressed
WEDNESDAY, April 14 (HealthDay News) -- Colorectal cancer screening rates fall short of desirable levels, according to two early-release articles published online April 13 in the Annals of Internal Medicine. One article urges targeted initiatives to improve screening rates and reduce disparities in underscreened communities and population subgroups. The other article confirms that important problems exist regarding the underuse, overuse and misuse of screening, and also urges system- and policy-level interventions.
New Clinical Algorithms Guide Gastrointestinal Diagnosis
TUESDAY, April 13 (HealthDay News) -- "Diagnostic Algorithms for Common Gastrointestinal Symptoms," a new comprehensive set of clinical algorithms to help primary care physicians and gastroenterologists accurately and cost-effectively diagnose frequent gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms of functional GI disorders that are often difficult to diagnose, has been published in the April issue of the American Journal of Gastroenterology.
Pancreaze Approved for Pancreatic Enzyme Deficiency
TUESDAY, April 13 (HealthDay News) -- Pancreaze delayed release capsules have been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the estimated 200,000 or more people in the United States whose bodies do not produce enough pancreatic enzymes, the agency said in a news release.
Hispanics Have Limited Access to Colorectal Cancer Screening
MONDAY, April 12 (HealthDay News) -- Hispanics are more likely than African-Americans or whites to live in areas where there is more limited availability of endoscopy, which may explain disparities in colorectal cancer (CRC) screening rates and stage at diagnosis, according to research published online April 12 in Cancer.
Biofeedback Effective Levator Ani Syndrome Treatment
FRIDAY, April 9 (HealthDay News) -- Biofeedback to teach relaxation of the pelvic floor muscles is more effective than electrogalvanic stimulation (EGS) or levator muscle massage for the treatment of levator ani syndrome (LAS), according to a study published in the April issue of Gastroenterology.
Drug Combination Shows Benefit in Biliary Tract Cancer
THURSDAY, April 8 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with advanced biliary tract cancer, cisplatin plus gemcitabine is linked to a survival advantage compared to gemcitabine alone, with no additional substantial toxicity, according to research published in the April 8 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.
Telaprevir Improves Hepatitis C Retreatment Outcomes
THURSDAY, April 8 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with genotype 1 hepatitis C virus (HCV) who failed to respond to peginterferon alfa-2a and ribavirin, retreatment that involves telaprevir in combination with the two drugs is more effective than the two drugs alone, according to a study in the April 8 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.
Vorinostat Safe for Use With Pelvic Palliative Radiotherapy
WEDNESDAY, April 7 (HealthDay News) -- The histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitor vorinostat is safe to use in combination with short-term palliative radiotherapy for patients with gastrointestinal cancer, according to a study published online April 7 in The Lancet Oncology.
Severity of Acute Pancreatitis Linked to CT Imaging Use
MONDAY, April 5 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with severe acute pancreatitis have more computed tomography (CT) imaging scans done and consequently have greater radiation exposure than patients with less severe disease, regardless of age, according to research published in the March issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.
Screening Test for Liver Disease in Children May Be Unreliable
MONDAY, April 5 (HealthDay News) -- The upper limit of the test most commonly used to screen children for chronic liver disease varies widely from one children's hospital to another, and is set so high that it may not reliably detect the disease, according to research published in the April issue of Gastroenterology.
Study Finds Delays in Endoscopy Common for GI Bleeding
FRIDAY, April 2 (HealthDay News) -- Only half of patients in the United Kingdom admitted to the hospital with acute upper gastrointestinal bleeding (AUGIB) receive endoscopy within the first 24 hours, and almost half of all hospitals lack an out-of-hours endoscopy rota even though risk-adjusted mortality rates are lower in hospitals that do have an out-of-hours rota, according to the findings of an audit published online March 31 in Gut.
Proton-Pump Inhibitors' Link to Osteoporosis Assessed
FRIDAY, April 2 (HealthDay News) -- Despite some evidence associating proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs) with an increased risk of hip fractures, chronic PPI use does not appear to be associated with osteoporosis or accelerated bone mineral density loss, according to research published in the March issue of Gastroenterology.
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