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Category: Pharmacy | Monthly Briefing

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July 2011 Briefing - Pharmacy

Last Updated: August 01, 2011.

 

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Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Pharmacy for July 2011. 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.

Low-Molecular-Weight Heparin Better for Primary PCI

FRIDAY, July 29 (HealthDay News) -- Compared to unfractionated heparin (UFH), low-molecular-weight heparin (LMWH) is associated with reduced mortality and reduced major bleeding in patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) treated with primary percutaneous coronary intervention (pPCI); but it shows no benefit in those treated with PCI after thrombolysis, according to a study published online July 20 in the Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis.

Abstract
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Adjuvant Chemo Provides No Benefit in Stage II Colon Cancer

FRIDAY, July 29 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with stage II colon cancer with or without poor prognostic features, adjuvant chemotherapy does not improve overall survival, according to a study published online July 25 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Abstract
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Editorial

Five Years of Tamoxifen Lowers 15-Year Mortality, Recurrence

FRIDAY, July 29 (HealthDay News) -- Five years of tamoxifen is associated with 15 years of reduced breast cancer recurrence and mortality in estrogen receptor (ER)-positive disease, but it has no effect on ER-negative disease, according to a meta-analysis published online July 29 in The Lancet.

Abstract
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Chemo and Trastuzumab Combo Ups Survival in Breast Cancer

THURSDAY, July 28 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2)-overexpressing primary breast cancer, combining trastuzumab with neoadjuvant chemotherapy is associated with an increased pathologic complete response (pCR) and favorable survival, according to a study published online July 25 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Abstract
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Editorial

Medicare Part D Tied to Lower Nondrug Medical Spending

TUESDAY, July 26 (HealthDay News) -- Implementation of Medicare Part D has significantly reduced the nondrug medical spending for Medicare beneficiaries with limited prior drug coverage, according to a study published in the July 27 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Abstract
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Apixaban Ups Bleeding Without Reducing Ischemic Events

TUESDAY, July 26 (HealthDay News) -- Adding 5 mg of apixaban twice daily to antiplatelet therapy among high-risk patients after an acute coronary syndrome increases the risk of bleeding events without a significant reduction in recurrent ischemic events, according to a study published online July 24 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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FDA: Methylene Blue and Linezolid Tied to CNS Reactions

TUESDAY, July 26 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has notified health care professionals and patients that individuals taking certain psychiatric medications may be at a higher risk of serious central nervous system (CNS) reactions when given reversible monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs), including methylene blue or linezolid (Zyvox).

More Information - Methylene Blue
More Information - Linezolid

New Biomarkers of Coronary Heart Disease Identified

TUESDAY, July 26 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with type 2 diabetes, higher circulating levels of soluble receptor for advanced glycation endproducts (sRAGE), and its secreted isoform (esRAGE) are strongly associated with coronary heart disease (CHD), but not stroke, according to a study published online July 19 in Diabetes.

Abstract
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Better UTI Prevention With TMP-SMX Than Cranberries

TUESDAY, July 26 (HealthDay News) -- Trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (TMP-SMX) treatment is more effective than cranberries in preventing recurrent urinary tract infections (rUTIs) among premenopausal women, according to a study published in the July 25 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

Abstract
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AVI-4658 Safe and Effective for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

TUESDAY, July 26 (HealthDay News) -- The phosphorodiamidate morpholino oligomer AVI-4658 has been found to safely induce new dystrophin protein expression in a significant dose-dependent manner in patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), according to a study published online July 25 in The Lancet.

Abstract
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Propranolol Safe and Effective for Infantile Hemangiomas

TUESDAY, July 26 (HealthDay News) -- Treatment with propranolol reduces the volume, color, and elevation of infantile hemangiomas (IHs), according to a study published online July 25 in Pediatrics.

Abstract
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FDA: Chantix Tied to Slight Risk of Cardiac Events

MONDAY, July 25 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration notified health care professionals and patients that the drug label for varenicline (Chantix) was updated to include information about the effectiveness and safety of the drug when used in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or cardiovascular disease.

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Azacitidine Treatment Effective in Previously Untreated AML

MONDAY, July 25 (HealthDay News) -- Azacitidine may be an effective treatment for acute myeloid leukemia (AML) in elderly patients, especially those who have not undergone any previous treatments and those with a white blood cell (WBC) count of <10 × 109/L, according to a study published online July 14 in Cancer.

Abstract
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Pagibaximab Seems Safe, Well Tolerated in High-Risk Neonates

MONDAY, July 25 (HealthDay News) -- Three once-a-week infusions of 90 mg/kg of pagibaximab in neonates who are at high risk for staphylococcal sepsis appears to be safe and well tolerated, with no cases of staphylococcal sepsis occurring, according to a study published online July 25 in Pediatrics.

Abstract
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High Mortality Decline With One-Dose Varicella Vaccine

MONDAY, July 25 (HealthDay News) -- Overall varicella mortality decreased by 88 percent following implementation of the one-dose vaccination program, with a 96 percent decrease in individuals aged younger than 50 years, according to a study published online July 25 in Pediatrics.

Abstract
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Propranolol Prevents Cocaine-Associated Memory Retrieval

MONDAY, July 25 (HealthDay News) -- The common β-blocker propranolol has been shown to prevent retrieval of cocaine-associated memories in addiction-models in rats, according to an experimental study published in the August issue of Neuropsychopharmacology.

Abstract
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FDA: Dronedarone Tied to Cardiovascular Events, Death

FRIDAY, July 22 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has notified health care professionals and patients that dronedarone (Multaq) may be associated with an increased risk of death and adverse cardiovascular events, including stroke and hospitalization for heart failure.

More Information

FDA: Possible Bisphosphonate-Esophageal CA Link Reviewed

FRIDAY, July 22 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has notified health care professionals and patients that the use of oral bisphosphonates does not appear to increase the risk of esophageal cancer, with the agency currently not recommending endoscopic screening of asymptomatic patients.

More Information

Longer NSCLC Progression-Free Survival With Erlotinib

FRIDAY, July 22 (HealthDay News) -- Treatment with erlotinib is associated with longer progression-free survival than standard chemotherapy for patients with advanced epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) mutation-positive non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC), according to a study published online July 22 in The Lancet Oncology.

Abstract
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Editorial (subscription or payment may be required)

Brilinta Approved for Acute Coronary Syndromes

THURSDAY, July 21 (HealthDay News) -- Brilinta (ticagrelor) has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to help reduce the risk of heart attack and cardiovascular death among people with acute coronary syndromes (ACS).

this approval

Quinacrine + Hydroxychloroquine Effective in Cutaneous Lupus

THURSDAY, July 21 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with cutaneous lupus erythematosus (CLE) who fail to respond to hydroxychloroquine alone may respond to the addition of quinacrine, but may also benefit from continuation of hydroxychloroquine monotherapy despite initial lack of response, according to a study published online July 18 in the Archives of Dermatology.

Abstract
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Torcetrapib Tied to Improved Glycemic Control in Diabetes

WEDNESDAY, July 20 (HealthDay News) -- Addition of torcetrapib to atorvastatin-treated patients with type 2 diabetes is associated with improved glycemic control, according to a study published online July 18 in Circulation.

Abstract
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Editorial (subscription or payment may be required)

MS Disease-Modifying Therapy Gains Come at High Cost in U.S.

WEDNESDAY, July 20 (HealthDay News) -- Disease-modifying therapies (DMTs) are not cost-effective for treating patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) in the United States compared to basic supportive therapy without DMTs, according to a study published online July 20 in Neurology.

Abstract
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Editorial (subscription or payment may be required)

BEACOPP Regimen Effective for Initial Hodgkin's Treatment

WEDNESDAY, July 20 (HealthDay News) -- Treatment with bleomycin, etoposide, doxorubicin, cyclophosphamide, vincristine, procarbazine, and prednisone (BEACOPP) results in better initial tumor control in Hodgkin's lymphoma than treatment with doxorubicin, bleomycin, vinblastine, and dacarbazine (ABVD), but there is no difference in long-term outcome, according to a study published in the July 21 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)
Editorial (subscription or payment may be required)

Stopping Low Dose Aspirin Ups Cardiac Risk

WEDNESDAY, July 20 (HealthDay News) -- Discontinuation of low dose aspirin among patients with a history of cardiovascular disease appears to increase the risk for heart attack, according to a study published online July 19 in BMJ.

Abstract
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Editorial (subscription or payment may be required)

FDA Approves Vaccine for 2011/2012 Influenza Season

TUESDAY, July 19 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced that the agency has approved the influenza vaccine formulation for the 2011/2012 influenza season; this formulation will be used by the six manufacturers licensed to manufacture and distribute the vaccine in the United States.

More Information

Low Health Literacy Linked to Poorer Health Outcomes

TUESDAY, July 19 (HealthDay News) -- Limited health literacy is associated with poorer health outcomes and reduced use of health care services, according to a review published in the July 19 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

Abstract
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Editorial (subscription or payment may be required)

cART Ups Life Expectancy in Ugandan HIV Patients

TUESDAY, July 19 (HealthDay News) -- Combination antiretroviral therapy (cART) may substantially improve life expectancy in patients with HIV in Uganda, with women having a greater life expectancy then men, according to a study published online July 18 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

Abstract
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Antidepressants Found Lacking for Seniors With Dementia

TUESDAY, July 19 (HealthDay News) -- Seniors with dementia who are prescribed antidepressants may not reap any benefit from the medication, but they do experience some adverse effects, according to research published online July 18 in The Lancet.

Abstract
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Editorial (subscription or payment may be required)

Negative Tests Highly Predictive of No NSAID Allergy

MONDAY, July 18 (HealthDay News) -- The negative predictive value (NPV) of provocation tests for hypersensitivity with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) is high, with none of the patients with a false negative test reporting a life threatening reaction, according to a study published online July 4 in Allergy.

Abstract
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Statin Therapy Does Not Up Cancer Risk in Older Adults

MONDAY, July 18 (HealthDay News) -- Statin therapy is not associated with a significant increase in cancer risk in older U.S. adults, according to a study published in the July 26 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

Abstract
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Safety Concern for Chronic NSAID Users With HTN, CAD

MONDAY, July 18 (HealthDay News) -- Chronic, self-reported use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) is associated with an increased risk of adverse events in patients with hypertension and coronary artery disease, according to a study published in the July issue of The American Journal of Medicine.

Abstract
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Factor VIII Dose Should Consider Both Body Weight and Fat Mass

MONDAY, July 18 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with hemophilia A, an infusion dose of factor VIII (FVIII) should be modified according to the patient's body weight (BW) and fat mass index (FMI), and should be adapted for over or underweight patients, according to a study published online July 5 in the Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis.

Abstract
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Clopidogrel, PPIs Linked to MI Risk After PCI

FRIDAY, July 15 (HealthDay News) -- In high-risk cardiovascular patients undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), concomitant use of clopidogrel and proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) is associated with an increased risk of cardiac events, specifically myocardial infarction (MI), according to a study published online July 5 in the Journal of Internal Medicine.

Abstract
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Faster Insulin Action With Needle-Free Jet Injection

FRIDAY, July 15 (HealthDay News) -- Insulin administration by needle-free jet injector enhances insulin absorption and reduces the duration of glucose-lowering action more than with conventional pen administration, according to a study published online June 29 in Diabetes Care.

Abstract
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Regimen Beneficial for Waldenstrom Macroglobulinemia

FRIDAY, July 15 (HealthDay News) -- Treatment with fludarabine, cyclophosphamide, and rituximab (FCR), in patients with Waldenstrom macroglobulinemia (WM), shows high complete remissions (CRs) and very good partial remission (VGPR) rates, according to a study published online July 5 in Cancer.

Abstract
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Vaccination Rates Up for Those With Liver Disease, Diabetes

FRIDAY, July 15 (HealthDay News) -- Vaccination rates for hepatitis A (HepA) and hepatitis B (HepB) in patients with chronic liver disease (CLD) and diabetes increased from 1999 to 2008, but remain low, according to a study published online July 2 in Hepatology.

Abstract
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Rilpivirine Has Non-Inferior Efficacy to Efavirenz for HIV-1

FRIDAY, July 15 (HealthDay News) -- Rilpivirine offers a safe profile and non-inferior efficacy to efavirenz in treatment-naive patients infected with HIV-1, according to a study published in the July 16 HIV special issue of the The Lancet.

Abstract
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Editorial (subscription or payment may be required)

H1N1 2009 Vaccine Not Tied to Guillain Barré Syndrome Risk

THURSDAY, July 14 (HealthDay News) -- The adjuvanted pandemic influenza A (H1N1) 2009 vaccine is not associated with an increased risk of Guillain-Barré syndrome, according to a study published July 12 in the BMJ.

Abstract
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Editorial (subscription or payment may be required)

Antiretroviral Drugs May Halt HIV Spread in Heterosexuals

WEDNESDAY, July 13 (HealthDay News) -- A daily oral dose of antiretroviral drugs used for the treatment of HIV infection may reduce HIV acquisition among uninfected individuals exposed to the virus through heterosexual sex, according to the results of a new U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study, the TDF2 study, along with the results of a separate trial (Partners Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis [PrEP] study).

More Information

Improved Prostate Cancer Survival With Combo Therapy

WEDNESDAY, July 13 (HealthDay News) -- Short-term androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) combined with radiotherapy improves survival in patients with early, localized prostate cancer compared to radiotherapy alone, according to a study published in the July 14 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)

Albuterol Not Better Than Placebo in Self-Report Outcomes

WEDNESDAY, July 13 (HealthDay News) -- Albuterol increases maximum forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1) in patients with asthma, but self-reported outcomes did not improve significantly with albuterol compared to placebo inhaler or sham acupuncture, according to a study published in the July 14 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Half of Parkinson's Patients With Psychosis Use Antipsychotics

WEDNESDAY, July 13 (HealthDay News) -- The overall use of antipsychotics in Parkinson's disease (PD) remained unchanged from the 2002 fiscal year (FY) to the 2008 FY, with 50 percent of patients with PD and psychosis (PDP) prescribed an antipsychotic in routine clinical care in the 2008 FY, according to a study published in the July issue of the Archives of Neurology.

Abstract
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Aledronate Tied to Less BMD Loss Around Femoral Implants

TUESDAY, July 12 (HealthDay News) -- Bone mineral density (BMD) is maintained in all regions around femoral implants in patients undergoing hip arthroplasty who are treated with alendronate, whereas in the lumbar spine, BMD is higher in patients treated with alendronate or alfacalcidol, according to a study published in the July 6 issue of The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery.

Abstract
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Similar Thyroid Risk for Brand-Name, Generic Amiodarone

TUESDAY, July 12 (HealthDay News) -- The incidence of thyroid dysfunction is similar in patients with atrial fibrillation treated with brand-name or generic formulations of amiodarone, according to a study published online July 11 in CMAJ, the journal of the Canadian Medical Association.

Abstract
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Early Metformin Therapy Prevents, Delays PCOS in Girls

MONDAY, July 11 (HealthDay News) -- Early metformin therapy in girls with low birth weight and precocious puberty (LBW-PP) prevents or delays the development of hirsutism, androgen excess, oligomenorrhea, and polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), according to a study published online June 1 in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

Abstract
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Combination Therapy for A-Fib Increases Bleeding Risk

FRIDAY, July 8 (HealthDay News) -- Combination antithrombotic therapy for patients with atrial fibrillation (AF) is associated with an increased risk of bleeding and no reduction in the risk of stroke, according to a study published in the July issue of Chest.

Abstract
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H1N1, Seasonal Flu Vaccines From 2009 to 2010 Were Safe

FRIDAY, July 8 (HealthDay News) -- The pandemic H1N1 influenza and seasonal influenza vaccines administered during the 2009 to 2010 season had no associated major safety problems, according to a study published online July 5 in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

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Possible Chemopreventive Role for Celecoxib in Lung Cancer

FRIDAY, July 8 (HealthDay News) -- Celecoxib significantly reduces bronchial Ki-67 labeling index (Ki-67 LI), and may be a potential chemopreventive agent for lung cancer in former smokers, according to a study published in the July issue of Cancer Prevention Research.

Abstract
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Metformin/Rosiglitazone Tied to Early Decrease in Diabetes

FRIDAY, July 8 (HealthDay News) -- Low-dose metformin/rosiglitazone therapy is associated with an initial delay in development of type 2 diabetes in individuals with impaired glucose tolerance, but it did not affect the worsening insulin resistance and β-cell dysfunction that occurs over time, according to a study published in the July issue of Diabetes Care.

Abstract
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Postpartum Contraceptive Use Guidelines Updated

THURSDAY, July 7 (HealthDay News) -- The use of combined hormonal contraceptives are not recommended during the first 21 days after delivery due to the high risk for venous thromboembolism (VTE), according to a report in the July 8 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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Multiple Drug Use Common in Geriatric Cancer Patients

THURSDAY, July 7 (HealthDay News) -- Polypharmacy is a worldwide problem in elderly cancer patients, and health care providers need to take measures to avoid it, according to a review published online July 7 in The Lancet Oncology.

Abstract
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Drug Susceptibility in Gonorrhea May Be Declining

THURSDAY, July 7 (HealthDay News) -- Cephalosporin susceptibility among Neisseria gonorrhoeae (N. gonorrhoeae) isolates appears to be declining; however, cephalosporins remain an effective treatment for gonorrhea, according to a report in the July 8 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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NSAIDs, COX-2 Inhibitors Tied to Increased Risk of A-Fib

THURSDAY, July 7 (HealthDay News) -- Use of non-aspirin, non-selective non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or selective cyclooxygenase (COX) 2 inhibitors is associated with an increased risk of atrial fibrillation or flutter, according to a study published online July 4 in BMJ.

Abstract
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Editorial (subscription or payment may be required)

Long-Term Indacaterol Effective in Pulmonary Disease

THURSDAY, July 7 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) tolerate indacaterol well, and have improved bronchodilation at 52 weeks, according to a study published in the July issue of Chest.

Abstract
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Nesiritide Has Small, Nonsignificant Effect on Dyspnea

WEDNESDAY, July 6 (HealthDay News) -- Use of nesiritide has a small, nonsignificant effect on dyspnea in patients with acute heart failure, and is not associated with changes in rates of death and rehospitalizations, according to a study published in the July 7 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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New Regimens Equal to Standard Isoniazid for Adults With HIV

WEDNESDAY, July 6 (HealthDay News) -- Novel secondary regimens to prevent tuberculosis in HIV-infected adults are no more effective than standard isoniazid for achieving tuberculosis-free survival; and isoniazid prophylaxis is not effective for improving tuberculosis-free survival in HIV-infected or uninfected children, according to two studies published in the July 7 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Abstract - Martinson
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Abstract - Madhi
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Editorial

First Trimester Antidepressant Use Tied to Childhood ASD

TUESDAY, July 5 (HealthDay News) -- Prenatal use of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), especially during the first trimester of pregnancy, may increase the risk of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) in children, according to a study published online July 4 in the Archives of General Psychiatry.

Abstract
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Arcapta Inhaler Approved for COPD

TUESDAY, July 5 (HealthDay News) -- The Arcapta Neohaler (indacaterol inhalation powder) has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the long-term treatment of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

COPD

Lopinavir-Ritonavir Treatment Tied to Adrenal Dysfunction

TUESDAY, July 5 (HealthDay News) -- Postnatal treatment with lopinavir-ritonavir (LR) for newborn children of HIV-1 infected mothers who were exposed to LR in utero have an increased risk of transient adrenal dysfunction, according to a study published in the July 6 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Abstract
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Varenicline Use Linked to Adverse Cardiovascular Events

TUESDAY, July 5 (HealthDay News) -- Use of the smoking-cessation drug varenicline is associated with an increase in the risk of serious adverse cardiovascular events among tobacco users, according to a meta-analysis published online July 4 in CMAJ, the journal of the Canadian Medical Association.

Abstract
Full Text
Editorial (subscription or payment may be required)

Increased First-Trimester Prescription Drug Use in U.S.

TUESDAY, July 5 (HealthDay News) -- Use of prescription medications in the first trimester of pregnancy increased from 1976 to 2008 in the United States, according to a study published in the July issue of the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

Abstract
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Aspirin As Primary Prevention Strategy Investigated

FRIDAY, July 1 (HealthDay News) -- Aspirin may prevent the risk of total cardiovascular (CV) events and nonfatal myocardial infarctions (MI), but it does not significantly reduce the risk of stroke, CV mortality, all-cause mortality, or total coronary heart disease, according to a meta-analysis published in the June 15 issue of The American Journal of Cardiology.

Abstract
Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)

Vitamin D Supplementation Safe and Effective in Pregnancy

FRIDAY, July 1 (HealthDay News) -- Daily 4000 IU vitamin D supplementation from 12 to 16 weeks of gestation is safe and effective in achieving vitamin D sufficiency in pregnant women and their neonates, according to a study published in the July issue of the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research.

Abstract
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Lazanda Approved for Cancer Pain

FRIDAY, July 1 (HealthDay News) -- Lazanda (fentanyl) nasal spray has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat breakthrough pain in adults with cancer who are already receiving opioid therapy, drug maker Archimedes Pharma said.

National Institute on Drug Abuse

Around One in 10 Computerized Prescriptions Contains Errors

FRIDAY, July 1 (HealthDay News) -- Approximately one in 10 computerized outpatient prescriptions contains errors, a third of which are potential adverse drug events, according to a study published online June 29 in the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association.

Abstract
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