Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Rheumatology 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.
Three Susceptibility Loci Confirmed for SLE
FRIDAY, March 30 (HealthDay News) -- A large genome-wide association study has replicated three systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) loci, according to research published online March 29 in the American Journal of Human Genetics.
Statin Discontinuation Linked to Mortality in RA Patients
THURSDAY, March 29 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with rheumatoid arthritis are at higher risk of death from cardiovascular and non-cardiovascular causes if they discontinue statin treatment, according to a study published online March 29 in Arthritis Care & Research.
Thigh Fat Area, Muscle Density Linked to RA Indicators
FRIDAY, March 23 (HealthDay News) -- Thigh fat area and muscle density, but not muscle area, are indicators of disability and physical performance in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), according to a study published online March 5 in Arthritis & Rheumatism.
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.
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.
Walking Speed Is a Marker for Knee Osteoarthritis
TUESDAY, March 20 (HealthDay News) -- Slower walking speed may be a marker for identifying those at risk for knee osteoarthritis (OA), according to a study published online March 5 in Arthritis Care & Research.
Generic Boniva Approved for Osteoporosis
MONDAY, March 19 (HealthDay News) -- The first generic versions of the once-monthly osteoporosis drug Boniva (ibandronate) have been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Web-Based Tool Ups Informed Choice in Rheumatoid Arthritis
MONDAY, March 19 (HealthDay News) -- A decision support tool effectively communicates the risks and benefits of biologic therapy to patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), increasing their likelihood of making an informed choice about treatment, according to a study published online March 5 in Arthritis Care & Research.
Discrepancy Between Disease Activity, Disability in Early RA
FRIDAY, March 16 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with early rheumatoid arthritis, there is a discrepancy between disease activity and disability, with women experiencing more disability than men, according to a Swedish study published online March 5 in Arthritis Care & Research.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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).
Poor Survival of Metal-on-Metal Total Hip Replacement
TUESDAY, March 13 (HealthDay News) -- For total hip replacement (THR), metal-on-metal stemmed articulations have poor survival rates compared with alternatives, such as metal-on-polyethylene and ceramic-on-ceramic, according to a review published online March 13 in The Lancet.
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.
Race and Socioeconomic Status Linked to Chronic Pain
FRIDAY, March 9 (HealthDay News) -- Chronic pain is worse for black patients and for those living in a neighborhood with low socioeconomic status (SES), according to research published in the February issue of The Journal of Pain.
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.
Rheumatoid Arthritis Linked to Increased Risk of A-Fib, Stroke
FRIDAY, March 9 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with rheumatoid arthritis have a significantly increased risk of atrial fibrillation and stroke, according to a study published online March 8 in BMJ.
Tibial Trabecular Bone Texture Predicts OA Progression
THURSDAY, March 8 (HealthDay News) -- Changes in medial and lateral trabecular bone texture can predict joint space narrowing (JSN) and progression of knee osteoarthritis (OA), according to research published in the March issue of Arthritis & Rheumatism.
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.
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.
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).
Classification Criteria Help ID Polymyalgia Rheumatica
WEDNESDAY, March 7 (HealthDay News) -- Provisional classification criteria have been established to discriminate polymyalgia rheumatica (PMR) from conditions which mimic PMR, according to a study published in the April issue of Arthritis & Rheumatism.
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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