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Category: Internal Medicine | Monthly Briefing

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May 2012 Briefing - Internal Medicine

Last Updated: June 01, 2012.

 

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Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Internal Medicine for May 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.

Insulin Receptor Substrate 1 Variant Linked to GFR

THURSDAY, May 31 (HealthDay News) -- A variant of the human insulin receptor substrate 1 (IRS1) gene, which plays an important role in modulating tissue response to insulin, is significantly associated with glomerular filtration rate (GFR), according to a study published online May 22 in Diabetes.

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Phlebotomy Benefits Patients With Metabolic Syndrome

THURSDAY, May 31 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with metabolic syndrome, phlebotomy correlates with lower systolic blood pressure and improvements in cardiovascular risk markers and glycemic control, with the changes associated with a reduction in ferritin, according to research published online May 30 in BMC Medicine.

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Slow-Growing Melanomas Lose Structure, Vary Color With Time

THURSDAY, May 31 (HealthDay News) -- The diameter of most slow-growing melanomas (SGMs) changes very little over time, but the lesions can become more disorganized, less structured, and change or develop new colors, according to a study published in the June issue of the British Journal of Dermatology.

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M. Genitalium Ups Risk of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease, Cervicitis

THURSDAY, May 31 (HealthDay News) -- Infection with Mycoplasma genitalium (M. genitalium) is an independent and strong risk factor for both cervicitis and pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), according to a study published in the June issue of the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

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Patient Goals for Presenting Internet Research to Docs Vary

THURSDAY, May 31 (HealthDay News) -- When cancer patients approach their doctors with Internet research regarding their disease, their goals for the conversation affect how they perceive their provider's responses (attributions), according to a study published online May 17 in the Journal of Applied Communication Research.

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Genetic Personality Traits May Play Role in Longevity

THURSDAY, May 31 (HealthDay News) -- Centenarians often have a positive outlook on life, are less likely to be neurotic, and are more likely to be conscientious, suggesting that genetically-based aspects of personality play a role in longevity, according to a study published online May 21 in Aging.

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Cardiovascular Risk Counseling Improves Statin Adherence

THURSDAY, May 31 (HealthDay News) -- For patients taking statins for prevention of cardiovascular disease (CVD), extended care with nurse-led cardiovascular risk-factor counseling improves statin adherence and reduces anxiety, with improvements seen in low-density lipoprotein cholesterol for primary prevention patients, according to a study published online May 24 in The American Journal of Cardiology.

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Intensive Glucose Control Helps Surrogate Renal End Points

THURSDAY, May 31 (HealthDay News) -- Intensive glucose therapy significantly reduces microalbuminuria and macroalbuminuria in adults with type 2 diabetes, but does not improve clinical renal outcomes, according to a study published in the May 28 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Repeat CT Scan Urged for Head Trauma Patients on Warfarin

WEDNESDAY, May 30 (HealthDay News) -- Minor head trauma patients taking warfarin should have a repeat computed tomography (CT) scan prior to discharge to detect delayed hemorrhage, particularly in those with an initial international normalized ratio (INR) higher than 3, according to research published in the June issue of the Annals of Emergency Medicine.

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Pre-Op Chemoradiotherapy Ups Survival in Esophageal Cancer

WEDNESDAY, May 30 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with esophageal or esophagogastric-junction cancer, treatment with neoadjuvant chemoradiotherapy followed by surgical resection is associated with improved survival compared with surgery alone, according to a study published in the May 31 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Link Between Obesity and Lower-Extremity Lymphedema Explored

WEDNESDAY, May 30 (HealthDay News) -- Lower-extremity lymphedema may be due to extreme obesity, as there appears to be a body mass index (BMI) threshold above which lymphatic flow becomes impaired, according to a letter to the editor published in the May 31 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Online Adderall May Contain Wrong Active Ingredients

WEDNESDAY, May 30 (HealthDay News) -- Consumers purchasing the drug Adderall online may be buying a counterfeit version that could be ineffective, unsafe, and potentially harmful, according to a safety alert issued May 30 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

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Working Night Shift May Increase Breast Cancer Risk

WEDNESDAY, May 30 (HealthDay News) -- There may be an increased risk of developing breast cancer among women who work night shifts, according to a study published online May 29 in Occupational & Environmental Medicine.

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Pathologic Response Prediction of Survival Aided by Tumor Type

WEDNESDAY, May 30 (HealthDay News) -- Pathologic complete response (pCR) is more highly predictive of recurrence-free survival (RFS) when specific breast cancer tumor type is factored in, according to a study published online May 29 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Mobile Technology Helps Improve Lifestyle Coaching

WEDNESDAY, May 30 (HealthDay News) -- Coaching supported by mobile technology can help adults improve their lifestyle, most significantly through increasing their intake of fruits and vegetables and decreasing sedentary leisure time, according to a study published in the May 28 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Glucose Levels at Admission Predict Death in Pneumonia

WEDNESDAY, May 30 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with community-acquired pneumonia without preexisting diabetes, serum glucose levels at admission are predictive of death at 28 and 90 days, according to a study published online May 29 in BMJ.

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Post-Transplant, eGFR Impacts Cardio Risk Independently

WEDNESDAY, May 30 (HealthDay News) -- In stable kidney transplant recipients, kidney function, as determined by estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR), is independently associated with cardiovascular (CVD) events and death, according to research published online May 17 in the American Journal of Transplantation.

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Acne Medication Isotretinoin Increases Risk of Eye Disorders

WEDNESDAY, May 30 (HealthDay News) -- The acne medicine isotretinoin may be linked to a nearly two-fold increased risk of ocular adverse effects in users, according to a study published online April 16 in the Archives of Dermatology.

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Risk Models Only Slightly Up Prediction of Complex Diseases

WEDNESDAY, May 30 (HealthDay News) -- Risk models that take gene-gene and gene-environment interactions into account only slightly improve the prediction of risk for three complex diseases, according to a study published online May 24 in the American Journal of Human Genetics.

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Protein Elevated in Stroke Patients With Microbleeds

WEDNESDAY, May 30 (HealthDay News) -- Serum levels of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), a marker of vascular permeability, are significantly higher in stroke patients with cerebral microbleeds, according to a study published online May 28 in the Archives of Neurology.

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Diabetes Linked to Lung Cancer in Postmenopausal Women

WEDNESDAY, May 30 (HealthDay News) -- Postmenopausal women with diabetes are at a significantly higher risk of developing lung cancer, particularly if they require insulin therapy, according to research published online May 22 in Diabetes Care.

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NSAID Use Linked to Reduced Risk of Skin Cancer

TUESDAY, May 29 (HealthDay News) -- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), including nonselective NSAIDs and older cyclooxygenase (COX)-2 inhibitors, are associated with a decreased risk of squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) and malignant melanoma (MM), particularly among long-term and high-intensity NSAID users, according to a study published online May 29 in Cancer.

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AHA Recommends More Safeguards for Genetic Testing

TUESDAY, May 29 (HealthDay News) -- While genetics show promise for improving health, more safeguards are needed to protect patients and allow scientific and clinical research to continue, according to recommendations issued by the American Heart Association and published online May 29 in Circulation.

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Obesity, Overweight at Diagnosis Ups B-Cell Lymphoma Prognosis

TUESDAY, May 29 (HealthDay News) -- For U.S. veterans with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL), being overweight or obese at time of diagnosis correlates with improved survival, according to a study published online May 29 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Evidence Updated for Impact of Menopausal Hormone Therapy

TUESDAY, May 29 (HealthDay News) -- An updated review clarifies the impact of menopausal hormone therapy on the risk of chronic conditions, according to research published online May 28 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Fever During Pregnancy Linked to Autism in Offspring

TUESDAY, May 29 (HealthDay News) -- Maternal influenza during pregnancy is not associated with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) or developmental delay (DD), but the odds of ASD and DD are increased for children whose mothers had fever during pregnancy, according to a study published online May 5 in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders.

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Influenza Vaccine in Pregnancy May Improve Outcomes

TUESDAY, May 29 (HealthDay News) -- Pregnant women vaccinated for H1N1 influenza during their second or third trimesters were less likely to give birth before 32 weeks' gestation, have a small-for-gestational-age (SGA) baby, or have a stillbirth, compared with those who were not vaccinated, according to research published in the June issue of the American Journal of Public Health.

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Evidence for Prevention of HIV Transmission Reviewed

TUESDAY, May 29 (HealthDay News) -- Evidence-based pharmacologic strategies for prevention of HIV transmission include postexposure prophylaxis, pre-exposure prophylaxis, and early initiation of treatment, according to a review published online May 28 in CMAJ, the journal of the Canadian Medical Association.

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Worse Survival for Recipients of Lungs From Smokers

TUESDAY, May 29 (HealthDay News) -- Recipients of lungs from donors with a positive smoking history have worse three-year survival, but their probability of survival is better than for those who remain on the waiting list, according to a study published online May 29 in The Lancet.

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Video Games Positively Impact Variety of Health Outcomes

MONDAY, May 28 (HealthDay News) -- Although additional rigorous clinical trials are warranted, the literature suggests that video games can be useful in improving a variety of health outcomes, particularly those in the areas of psychological and physical therapy, according to research published online in the June issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

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Family History of Alzheimer's Affects Functional Connectivity

FRIDAY, May 25 (HealthDay News) -- Cognitively normal individuals with a family history of late-onset Alzheimer's disease (AD) may display lower resting state functional connectivity in the default mode network (DMN) of the brain, and this effect is detectable even in those who do not carry the apolipoprotein E (APOE) ε4 allele, according to a study published online May 9 in the Annals of Neurology.

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Pancreatectomy OK Without Downstaging From Therapy

FRIDAY, May 25 (HealthDay News) -- Pancreatectomy improves median survival in pancreatic cancer patients even when presurgical neoadjuvant therapy does not lead to radiographic downstaging of tumors, according to a study published online May 17 in Cancer.

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Magnesium Not Recommended After Subarachnoid Bleed

FRIDAY, May 25 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage, intravenous magnesium sulfate is no better than placebo for reduction of poor outcome, according to a study published online May 25 in The Lancet to coincide with presentation at the European Stroke Conference, held from May 22 to 25 in Lisbon, Portugal.

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Upping Dietary Calcium Buys No Big Cardiovascular Benefit

FRIDAY, May 25 (HealthDay News) -- Increasing dietary calcium intake might not offer significant cardiovascular benefits, but intake through calcium supplements might raise myocardial infarction (MI) risk, according to a study published online May 23 in Heart.

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Cognitive, Sound-Based Combo Therapy Reduces Tinnitus

FRIDAY, May 25 (HealthDay News) -- A multidisciplinary approach to treating tinnitus that combines cognitive behavior therapy with sound-based tinnitus retraining therapy is significantly more effective than currently available treatments for reducing symptoms in otherwise healthy subjects, according to a study published in the May 26 issue of The Lancet.

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Peritonitis Ups Odds of Mortality in Peritoneal Dialysis Patients

FRIDAY, May 25 (HealthDay News) -- Among patients who die while on peritoneal dialysis, peritonitis is associated with mortality, with the highest odds for peritonitis in the 30 days before death, according to a study published online May 24 in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

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Common Therapies for Basal Cell Carcinoma Offer Similar Survival

FRIDAY, May 25 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with superficial basal cell carcinoma (sBCC), treatment with imiquimod or photodynamic therapy (PDT) results in similar long-term tumor-free survival, according to a review published online May 21 in the British Journal of Dermatology.

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Low Vitamin D Intake Tied to Risk of Thromboembolic Stroke

THURSDAY, May 24 (HealthDay News) -- In Japanese-American men, low dietary vitamin D intake is associated with an increased risk of all stroke and thromboembolic stroke during a 34-year follow-up period, according to a study published online May 24 in Stroke.

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Low-Glucose Suspend Function in Insulin Pumps Deemed Safe

THURSDAY, May 24 (HealthDay News) -- Sensor-augmented pump therapy with a low-glucose suspend (LGS) function appears to be safe for patients with type 1 diabetes, according to a study published online May 14 in Diabetes Care.

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U.S. Stroke Prevalence Little Changed in Recent Years

THURSDAY, May 24 (HealthDay News) -- The prevalence of stroke in the United States has changed little over the past seven years, and disparities by race/ethnicity, education level, and geographic location still persist, according to a study published in the May 25 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity & Mortality Weekly Report.

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One-Fifth of Healthy Middle-Aged Men Have Low-Grade Murmur

THURSDAY, May 24 (HealthDay News) -- More than one-fifth of healthy middle-aged men have a low-grade systolic heart murmur that confers a nearly five-fold higher risk of future aortic valve replacement (AVR), according to a study published in the June issue of the Journal of Internal Medicine.

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Diabetes-Linked Cardio, All-Cause Mortality Decreasing

WEDNESDAY, May 23 (HealthDay News) -- From 1997 to 2006, there was a significant decrease in the cardiovascular disease (CVD) and all-cause mortality rates for U.S. men and women with diabetes, according to research published in the June issue of Diabetes Care.

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Aspirin Effective in Preventing Thromboembolism Recurrence

WEDNESDAY, May 23 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with unprovoked venous thromboembolism who have completed oral anticoagulant treatment, aspirin effectively prevents recurrence, with no apparent increase in the risk of major bleeding, according to a study published in the May 24 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Treatment With rt-PA Within Six Hours of Stroke Beneficial

WEDNESDAY, May 23 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with acute ischemic stroke, treatment with recombinant tissue plasminogen activator (rt-PA) within six hours is associated with improved outcomes, according to two studies published online May 23 in The Lancet to coincide with presentation at the European Stroke Conference, held from May 22 to 25 in Lisbon, Portugal.

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New Estimates Up Dementia Rates in Mid-Income Countries

WEDNESDAY, May 23 (HealthDay News) -- Use of 10/66 dementia diagnosis criteria (10/66) results in an increase in the estimated incidence of dementia in middle-income countries, according to a study published online May 23 in The Lancet.

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Genetic Testing Doesn't Up Post-Test Health Care Use

WEDNESDAY, May 23 (HealthDay News) -- Receiving genetic susceptibility testing is associated with an increase in physician visits before testing, but does not impact subsequent health care utilization, according to a study published online May 17 in Genetics in Medicine.

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Characteristics of STEMI Reperfusion Systems Identified

WEDNESDAY, May 23 (HealthDay News) -- Successful ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) reperfusion systems share common characteristics, and these characteristics can be used to set standards for coordinated care, according to research published online May 22 in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

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Patients Can Minimize Injection Pain by Looking Away

WEDNESDAY, May 23 (HealthDay News) -- The intensity of pain and unpleasantness associated with a needle prick is affected not only by previous experiences with needle pricks but also by information given prior to an injection, according to research published in the May issue of Pain.

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Hunter-Gatherer Lifestyle Tied to Low Atherosclerosis Risk

TUESDAY, May 22 (HealthDay News) -- Traditional hunter-gatherers have a lower risk of atherosclerosis, lower age-related increases in blood pressure, and reduced prevalence of hypertension, according to two studies published online May 21 in Hypertension.

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CPAP Use May Reduce Risk of Hypertension in Apnea Patients

TUESDAY, May 22 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) without daytime sleepiness, continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) does not significantly affect the incidence of hypertension or cardiovascular events; however, regular use of CPAP may reduce the increased risk of incident hypertension seen among patients with OSA, according to two studies published in the May 23/30 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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For Older Women, Saturated Fats Linked to Worse Cognition

TUESDAY, May 22 (HealthDay News) -- For older women, higher saturated fatty acid (SFA) intake correlates with worse global cognition and verbal memory trajectories, while higher intake of monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) correlates with improved trajectories, according to a study published online May 17 in the Annals of Neurology.

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Post-Stroke Inpatient Statins Improve Discharge Outcomes

TUESDAY, May 22 (HealthDay News) -- Statin use during hospitalization for ischemic stroke significantly improves the likelihood of being discharged to home or institution, according to a study published in the May 22 issue of Neurology.

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Chemoradiotherapy Improves Survival for Elderly With NSCLC

TUESDAY, May 22 (HealthDay News) -- For elderly patients with locally advanced non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC), treatment with radiotherapy plus carboplatin improves overall survival versus radiotherapy alone, according to a study published May 22 in The Lancet Oncology.

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QRS Duration Independently Tied to Risk of Sudden Cardiac Death

TUESDAY, May 22 (HealthDay News) -- Prolonged QRS duration is associated with an increased risk of sudden cardiac death (SCD), according to a study published online May 21 in Circulation.

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Vigorous Physical Activity Tied to Reduced Psoriasis Risk

TUESDAY, May 22 (HealthDay News) -- Vigorous physical activity is associated with a reduced risk of psoriasis in women, according to a study published online May 21 in the Archives of Dermatology.

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U.S. Task Force Recommends Against PSA-Based Screening

MONDAY, May 21 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommends against the use of the prostate-specific antigen (PSA)-based screening for men in the general U.S. population, according to new guidelines published online May 21 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Dabrafenib Safe, Active Against Some Metastatic Melanomas

MONDAY, May 21 (HealthDay News) -- Dabrafenib, the mutant BRAF-selective inhibitor of BRAF kinase, is safe for treating solid tumors and shows antitumor activity against Val600-mutant BRAF melanomas and other solid tumors, including melanomas that have metastasized to the brain, according to a study published in the May 19 issue of The Lancet.

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White Matter of Abstinent Alcoholics Recovers Over Time

MONDAY, May 21 (HealthDay News) -- Based on diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), the microstructural changes seen in the genu and body of the corpus callosum in recently detoxified alcohol-dependent patients are found to improve after one year of abstinence, according to research published online May 2 in Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research.

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Higher Pain Tolerance for Athletes Than Active Controls

MONDAY, May 21 (HealthDay News) -- Athletes seem to have significantly higher pain tolerance than normally-active people, according to research published in the June issue of Pain.

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Phylogenomic Analysis Reveals Origin, Spread of MRSA Clone

MONDAY, May 21 (HealthDay News) -- Phylogenomic analysis has revealed details about the emergence and transmission of a major methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) clone, EMRSA-16, according to research published online May 14 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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Altered Amino Acid Metabolism Precedes Hyperglycemia

MONDAY, May 21 (HealthDay News) -- In a population of middle-aged men and women, branched-chain and aromatic amino acid metabolism alterations precede the development of hyperglycemia, and alanine, lactate, tyrosine, and pyruvate predict postchallenge glucose, according to a study published online May 4 in Diabetes Care.

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Palpitations Predict Future Atrial Fibrillation

FRIDAY, May 18 (HealthDay News) -- Palpitations, hypertension, and body mass index (BMI) are predictive of future atrial fibrillation (AF) in both men and women, according to a study published online May 15 in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology.

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Inadequate Pain Meds in ER for Patients With Long-Bone Fx

FRIDAY, May 18 (HealthDay News) -- The majority of patients with long-bone fractures receive inadequate pain medication in the emergency department, and disparities in management exist, according to a study published in the May issue of the Journal of Emergency Nursing.

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Workplace Inspections Reduce Job Injuries and Related Costs

FRIDAY, May 18 (HealthDay News) -- Government mandated workplace inspections, such as those carried out by California's Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) reduce on-the-job injuries and their associated costs without harming the companies' performance or profits, according to a study published in the May 18 issue of Science.

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Increase in Physical Activity in Men Optimizes Peak Bone Mass

FRIDAY, May 18 (HealthDay News) -- For young men, increasing physical activity over a five-year period is associated with improvements in bone mineral content (BMC) and bone mineral density (BMD), according to a study published in the May issue of the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research.

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Short-Term Smoke Exposure Impairs Endothelial Function

FRIDAY, May 18 (HealthDay News) -- Short-term exposure to low levels of secondhand smoke (SHS) results in a concentration-dependent decrease in endothelial function, according to a study published in the May 22 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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'Pedicure Fish' May Harbor Pathogens for Zoonotic Disease

FRIDAY, May 18 (HealthDay News) -- Garra rufa (G. rufa), or doctor fish -- widely used in the health and beauty industries around the world, although currently banned in many U.S. states -- may harbor zoonotic disease pathogens, according to a letter to the editor published online May 16 in the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Emerging Infectious Diseases.

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Gender, High DAS28-P Index Predictive of Pain in Early RA

FRIDAY, May 18 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), female gender and having a high proportion of disease activity score (DAS28) attributable to patient-reported components (joint tenderness and visual analog score) (DAS28-P) at baseline are predictive of less improvement in pain at one year, according to a study published online May 3 in Arthritis Care & Research.

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Adjuvant Radiochemotherapy Has Lasting Benefit in Gastric Cancer

FRIDAY, May 18 (HealthDay News) -- Ten-year data from the Southwestern Oncology Group-directed Intergroup Study 0116 confirm the benefits of adjuvant radiochemotherapy after gastric cancer resection in terms of overall survival (OS) and relapse-free survival (RFS), according to research published online May 14 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Generic Versions of Plavix Approved

THURSDAY, May 17 (HealthDay News) -- The first generic versions of Plavix (clopidogrel bisulfate) have been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

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PEG Tubes Linked to Increased Risk of New Pressure Ulcers

THURSDAY, May 17 (HealthDay News) -- Percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy (PEG) feeding tubes significantly increase the risk of new pressure ulcers and do not promote the healing of existing pressure ulcers in nursing home residents with advanced cognitive impairment, according to a study published in the May 14 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Retinal Vessel Diameter Linked to Heart Disease, Hypertension

THURSDAY, May 17 (HealthDay News) -- Baseline retinal vessel diameter is an independent predictor of incident hypertension, lower extremity arterial disease (LEAD), and any cardiovascular disease (CVD) at six years in African-American patients with type 1 diabetes mellitus, according to a study published in the May issue of the Archives of Ophthalmology.

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Causality Link Between HDL Cholesterol, MI Challenged

THURSDAY, May 17 (HealthDay News) -- Genetic mechanisms that are associated with high plasma levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol do not reduce the risk of myocardial infarction (MI), adding question to causality of link, according to a study published online May 17 in The Lancet.

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Predictors of Length of Hospital Stay After Spine Surgery ID'd

THURSDAY, May 17 (HealthDay News) -- A variety of pre-, intra-, and postoperative factors contribute to increased length of stay (LOS) for patients who undergo level 1 minimally invasive (MIS) transforaminal interbody fusions (TLIF) spine surgery, according to a study published online May 8 in Spine.

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Statins Benefit Those at Low Risk for Vascular Events

THURSDAY, May 17 (HealthDay News) -- Reduction of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol with statins is associated with a decrease in major vascular events, even for individuals with a five-year risk of less than 10 percent, according to research published online May 17 in The Lancet.

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For Contact Sport Athletes, Head Impact Impairs Learning

WEDNESDAY, May 16 (HealthDay News) -- For contact sport athletes, repetitive head impact during a single season is associated with poorer measures of new learning and poorer performance on cognitive measures, according to a study published online May 16 in Neurology.

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Azithromycin Tied to Increased Risk of Cardiovascular Mortality

WEDNESDAY, May 16 (HealthDay News) -- Azithromycin treatment is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular and all-cause mortality, according to a study published in the May 16 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Leukoencephalopathy Risk Factors ID'd for MS Drug

WEDNESDAY, May 16 (HealthDay News) -- Multiple sclerosis patients taking natalizumab are at higher risk of developing progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML) if they are positive for the anti-JC virus antibodies, have been treated with immunosuppressants, and have been treated with natalizumab for longer periods, according to a study published in the May 17 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Coffee Drinking Linked to Lower Mortality Risk

WEDNESDAY, May 16 (HealthDay News) -- Coffee drinking is associated with a lower risk of death from most major causes except cancer, according to a study published in the May 17 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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CDC: 35th Report on the Health of the Nation Published

WEDNESDAY, May 16 (HealthDay News) -- The 35th report on the health status of the United States in 2011 has been published online May 16 by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS).

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Repeated Revascularization Doesn't Aid High-Risk Patients

WEDNESDAY, May 16 (HealthDay News) -- For asymptomatic patients who are identified as high-risk by exercise echocardiography (ExE) after coronary revascularization, repeated revascularization is not associated with improved outcomes, according to a study published online May 14 in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Increased Sudden Cardiac Death Rate Among HIV Patients

WEDNESDAY, May 16 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with HIV/AIDS have a significantly increased risk of sudden cardiac death (SCD), according to a study published in the May 22 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Many People With Dementia Die at Home

WEDNESDAY, May 16 (HealthDay News) -- Individuals with dementia often live and die at home, and most transitions to a nursing home follow hospitalization, according to a study published in the May issue of the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

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Outcomes Good for Status Asthmaticus Patients in ICU

WEDNESDAY, May 16 (HealthDay News) -- Although the majority of patients admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU) with status asthmaticus (SA) require mechanical ventilation, the rates of mortality and complications are very low, according to a study published in the March issue of Respiratory Medicine.

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Diagonal Ear Lobe Crease Tied to Coronary Artery Disease

WEDNESDAY, May 16 (HealthDay News) -- Diagonal ear lobe crease (DELC) is independently and significantly associated with the prevalence, extent, and severity of coronary artery disease (CAD), according to a study published in the May 1 issue of The American Journal of Cardiology.

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Pazopanib Active in Metastatic Soft-Tissue Sarcoma

WEDNESDAY, May 16 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with metastatic non-adipocytic soft-tissue sarcoma, progressing in spite of previous chemotherapy, pazopanib improves progression-free survival, according to the results of a phase 3 study published online May 16 in The Lancet.

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Air Pollution Linked to Cardiovascular Disease Markers

TUESDAY, May 15 (HealthDay News) -- Changes in air pollution levels during the Beijing Olympics were associated with changes in biomarkers linked to cardiovascular disease in healthy young people, according to a study published in the May 16 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, a theme issue on global health.

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More Education Linked to Lower Mortality in Over 40s

TUESDAY, May 15 (HealthDay News) -- Additional schooling is associated with a small reduction in mortality, but only after 40 years of age, according to a study published online May 14 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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AIDS Relief Assistance Linked to Greater Decline in Mortality

TUESDAY, May 15 (HealthDay News) -- All-cause adult mortality declined more substantially in African countries in which the U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) program operated more intensively between 2004 and 2008, according to a study published in the May 16 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, a theme issue on global health.

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Acupuncture Tied to Improved Dyspnea on Exertion in COPD

TUESDAY, May 15 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), acupuncture appears to improve dyspnea on exertion, according to a study published online May 14 in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Low Back Pain Improves Soon After Treatment, but Still Lingers

TUESDAY, May 15 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with acute or persistent low back pain, pain and disability improve in the first six weeks of treatment, but low-to-moderate pain and disability tend to persist at one year, according to a review published online May 14 in CMAJ, the journal of the Canadian Medical Association.

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Better Outcomes at High-Volume Stroke Centers

TUESDAY, May 15 (HealthDay News) -- High-volume endovascular stroke centers provide faster times to treatment, and patients are more likely to have good clinical outcomes and successful reperfusion, according to a study published online May 13 in the Journal of NeuroInterventional Surgery.

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Lack of Post-MI Discharge Advice Hinders Sexual Activity

TUESDAY, May 15 (HealthDay News) -- Less than half of patients who suffer an acute myocardial infarction (AMI) receive instruction regarding resuming sexual activity on hospital discharge, with those who do not r

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