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Category: Gastroenterology | Monthly Briefing

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March 2012 Briefing - Gastroenterology

Last Updated: April 02, 2012.

 

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Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Gastroenterology for March 2012. 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.

Liver Cancer Patients Less Likely to Die on Transplant List

FRIDAY, March 30 (HealthDay News) -- Liver transplantation candidates with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) have significantly lower 90-day odds of waitlist removal due to clinical deterioration or death compared to non-HCC candidates with similar Model for End-Stage Liver Disease (MELD) scores, according to a study published in the April issue of Liver Transplantation.

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Genetic Variants Confer Susceptibility to Fatty Liver

FRIDAY, March 30 (HealthDay News) -- Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in two genes, coding for glucokinase regulatory protein (GCKR) and patatin-like phospholipase 3 (PNPLA3), act together to increase the susceptibility of obese children and adolescents to fatty liver disease, according to research published in the March issue of Hepatology.

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Adherence to Cancer Surveillance Guidelines Varies

FRIDAY, March 30 (HealthDay News) -- Insured breast cancer survivors have high rates of guideline-recommended recurrence testing and non-recommended metastatic testing, while only about half of colorectal cancer survivors undergo recommended surveillance and two-thirds receive non-recommended metastatic testing, according to a study published online March 20 in Cancer.

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Longer Course of Imatinib Better in Trial for GI Stromal Tumor

TUESDAY, March 27 (HealthDay News) -- A longer course of imatinib (36 months versus 12 months) significantly improves recurrence-free survival (RFS) and overall survival in postoperative patients at high risk for recurrence of gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST), according to a study published in the March 28 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Review Compares Drug Options for Irritable Bowel Syndrome

TUESDAY, March 27 (HealthDay News) -- Tricyclic antidepressants and alosetron are associated with significant harm in treating irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) compared with rifaximin, and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and lubiprostone appear to be safe, according to a meta-analysis published in the April issue of The American Journal of Medicine.

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Insulin Resistance Increases Risk of Colorectal Adenomas

TUESDAY, March 27 (HealthDay News) -- Insulin resistance (IR) and central obesity, as measured by waist to hip ratio (WHR), are associated with a significantly increased risk of colorectal adenomas, especially in men, according to a study published in the April 1 issue of Cancer.

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New Device Approved for Lingering GERD

FRIDAY, March 23 (HealthDay News) -- The LINX Reflux Management System has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat people with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) who continue to have chronic symptoms, despite taking maximum medication and making recommended lifestyle changes.

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Health Care Team Members Key for Antimicrobial Stewardship

THURSDAY, March 22 (HealthDay News) -- Antimicrobial stewardship programs (ASPs) that use health care epidemiologists (HEs) and infection preventionists (IPs) have a crucial role to play in the effort to combat health care-associated infections (HAIs), including those caused by multidrug-resistant organisms (MDROs), according to the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology and the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America position paper published in the March issue of the American Journal of Infection Control.

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Chromosome 12 Mutation Linked to Familial Diarrhea

WEDNESDAY, March 21 (HealthDay News) -- An activating mutation in GUCY2C, encoding guanylate cyclase C (GC-C), is thought to cause a novel familial diarrhea syndrome seen in a Norwegian family, according to a study published online March 21 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Regular Aspirin Use Can Lower Cancer Risk, Studies Confirm

WEDNESDAY, March 21 (HealthDay News) -- Regular aspirin use is associated with a lower long-term risk of colorectal and other, particularly gastrointestinal, cancers as well as a reduced risk of distant metastasis, according to research published online March 21 in The Lancet Oncology.

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Survey Describes Docs' Online Professionalism Violations

TUESDAY, March 20 (HealthDay News) -- Most medical licensing authorities receive and act upon reports of physicians' online professionalism violations, according to a research letter published in the March 21 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Anesthesia During Endoscopy, Colonoscopy on the Rise

TUESDAY, March 20 (HealthDay News) -- Use of gastroenterology anesthesia services increased considerably from 2003 to 2009 among both Medicare and commercially-insured patients, according to a study published in the March 21 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Antimicrobial Stewardship Saves Millions of Dollars

TUESDAY, March 20 (HealthDay News) -- Antimicrobial stewardship programs save hospitals millions of dollars, according to a study published in the April issue of Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology.

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H. Pylori Associated With Impaired Glucose Tolerance

TUESDAY, March 20 (HealthDay News) -- Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) seropositivity is associated with glycosylated hemoglobin (HbA1c) levels, an interaction which may be augmented by a high body mass index (BMI), according to a study published online March 13 in the Journal of Infectious Diseases.

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Poorer Health Literacy Linked to Increased Mortality

FRIDAY, March 16 (HealthDay News) -- A considerable proportion of older adults in England have medium or low health literacy, which is associated with increased mortality, according to a study published online March 15 in BMJ.

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Hyperammonemia Disrupts Sleep in Patients With Cirrhosis

FRIDAY, March 16 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with cirrhosis, hyperammonemia induced by an amino acid challenge (AAC) leads to an increase in daytime subjective sleepiness and changes in sleep patterns, according to a study published in the March issue of Hepatology.

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Analgesic Use After Surgery Linked to Long-Term Use

THURSDAY, March 15 (HealthDay News) -- Older patients prescribed opioids or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) for pain relief after short-stay surgery appear to be at increased risk for becoming long-term analgesic users, according to a study published in the March 12 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Personal Mobile Computers Improve Resident Efficiency

WEDNESDAY, March 14 (HealthDay News) -- The use of personal mobile computers (Apple iPads) by internal medicine residents improves efficiency, according to a research letter published in the March 12 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Antibiotic Treatment of E. Coli Reduces Bacterial Shedding

WEDNESDAY, March 14 (HealthDay News) -- Treatment with azithromycin is associated with a lower frequency of long-term carriage of Escherichia coli (E. coli) and a shorter duration of shedding of the bacteria in stool specimens during the 2011 German Shiga toxin-producing enteroaggregative E. coli (STEC) O104:H4 outbreak, according to a study published in the March 14 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Higher Spending by Hospitals Improves Outcomes

TUESDAY, March 13 (HealthDay News) -- Hospitals that are part of the universal health care system in Canada that spend more on inpatient care have lower rates of deaths and hospital readmissions, according to a study published in the March 14 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Endoscopic Necrosectomy Tied to Better Pancreatitis Outcomes

TUESDAY, March 13 (HealthDay News) -- A less invasive procedure, endoscopic transgastric necrosectomy, reduces the proinflammatory response and significant complications in patients with infected necrotizing pancreatitis, compared with surgical necrosectomy, according to a study published in the March 14 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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U.S. Mortality Rates Dropped 60 Percent From 1935 to 2010

TUESDAY, March 13 (HealthDay News) -- From 1935 to 2010, the death rate in the United States decreased considerably, although the single-year improvements in mortality were often small, according to a March data brief issued by the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS).

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Five New Biomarkers for Crohn's Identified in Ashkenazi Jews

TUESDAY, March 13 (HealthDay News) -- Five new biomarkers for Crohn's disease (CD) have been identified in the Ashkenazi Jewish (AJ) population, according to research published online March 8 in PLoS Genetics.

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Financial Hardship Common Among Colon Cancer Patients

TUESDAY, March 13 (HealthDay News) -- Nearly 40 percent of patients undergoing adjuvant chemotherapy for stage III colon cancer experience financial hardship, even if they have health insurance coverage, according to research published online March 12 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Hepatitis E Virus May Cause Acute Liver Dysfunction in HIV

MONDAY, March 12 (HealthDay News) -- For HIV-infected individuals, hepatitis E virus (HEV) is one cause of acute liver dysfunction, accounting for 4 percent of acute liver abnormalities, according to a study published in the March issue of Emerging Infectious Diseases.

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Flu Vaccine Up Among Medical Staff When They Believe It Works

FRIDAY, March 9 (HealthDay News) -- Hospital health care workers (HCWs) are more likely to receive the seasonal influenza vaccination if they believe it works and are committed to preventing this highly contagious virus, according to research published in the April issue of Occupational & Environmental Medicine.

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Surrogates Tend to Misinterpret Poor Prognosis Information

FRIDAY, March 9 (HealthDay News) -- Surrogate decision makers for critically ill patients interpret prognostic statements expressing a low risk of death accurately, but interpret statements conveying poor prognosis optimistically, according to a study published in the March 6 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Gene-Based Test Identifies Poor-Prognosis Colon Cancers

THURSDAY, March 8 (HealthDay News) -- A sensitive and specific gene-based classifier can be used to identify BRAF mutant colon cancer tumors and a subpopulation of BRAF wild-type tumors with poor prognosis, according to a study published March 5 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Use of Stem Cells, Conditioning Induces Immune Tolerance

THURSDAY, March 8 (HealthDay News) -- A novel approach using a bioengineered mobilized cellular product enriched with hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) and tolerogenic graft facilitating cells (FCs) in combination with nonmyeloablative conditioning is safe and practical for inducing immune tolerance after transplantation, according to a study published in the March 7 issue of Science Translational Medicine.

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Buprenorphine Maintenance Therapy Not Recommended

THURSDAY, March 8 (HealthDay News) -- Opioid substitution therapy with buprenorphine is not recommended for opioid-addicted health care professionals (HCPs), according to research published in the March issue of the Mayo Clinic Proceedings.

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Economic Stagnation May Have Increased Mortality Rate

WEDNESDAY, March 7 (HealthDay News) -- From the late 1990s through 2005, mortality rates for Japanese men who worked as professionals or managers began to increase, coinciding with the country's period of economic stagnation, according to research published online March 6 in BMJ.

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Financial Burden of Medical Care Affects One in Three

WEDNESDAY, March 7 (HealthDay News) -- In the first half of 2011, one in three individuals was in a family that experienced the financial burden of medical care in the United States, according to the results of the National Health Interview Survey published March 7 by the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS).

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Bevacizumab Tied to Improved Telangiectasia Cardiac Output

WEDNESDAY, March 7 (HealthDay News) -- Bevacizumab is associated with improved cardiac output and reduced duration and number of nose bleeds in patients with severe hepatic forms of hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia (HHT), according to a phase 2 study published in the March 7 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Gastroesophageal Reflux Linked to Tooth Surface Loss

TUESDAY, March 6 (HealthDay News) -- Tooth surface loss is significantly greater in individuals with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) than in controls, according to a study published in the March 1 issue of the Journal of the American Dental Association.

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Electronic Test Result Access Does Not Reduce Test Ordering

TUESDAY, March 6 (HealthDay News) -- For office-based physicians, electronic access to patient imaging and laboratory test results does not decrease -- and may actually increase -- the number of diagnostic tests ordered, according to research published in the March issue of Health Affairs.

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Ultrasound IDs Post-Transplant Recurrent Hep C Cirrhosis

MONDAY, March 5 (HealthDay News) -- Ultrasound-based transient elastography (TE) provides diagnostic accuracy for detecting cirrhosis due to recurrent hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection following liver transplantation, according to a meta-analysis published in the March issue of Liver Transplantation.

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Drug Relieves Opioid-Induced Constipation in Critically Ill

MONDAY, March 5 (HealthDay News) -- For critically ill patients with opioid-induced constipation, treatment with methylnaltrexone (MNTX) is associated with improved bowel function compared with standard rescue therapy, according to a study published in the March issue of the Mayo Clinic Proceedings.

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Fecal Transplant Feasible for Recurrent C. difficile Infection

FRIDAY, March 2 (HealthDay News) -- Recurrent Clostridium difficile (C. difficile) infection (CDI) can successfully be treated in the vast majority of patients through a fecal transplantation procedure via colonoscopy, according to research published in the March issue of Gastroenterology.

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Bariatric Surgery Risks Up in Patients With Kidney Disease

FRIDAY, March 2 (HealthDay News) -- Higher rates of bariatric surgery complications are seen in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD), with advancing disease stage correlating with increasing complication rates, according to research published online March 1 in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

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Hypoferremia Predicts Treatment Response to IFN-α

THURSDAY, March 1 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with hepatitis C virus (HCV), hepcidin, a regulator of iron homeostasis, is induced following a single dose of pegylated interferon-α (PEG-IFNα), and may be a surrogate marker of immediate efficacy of IFN-α, according to a study published online Feb. 15 in Hepatology.

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