Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Nephrology for February 2010. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal articles, as well as the FDA approvals and regulatory changes that are the most likely to affect clinical practice.
Belatacept Benefits Seen After Kidney Transplant
WEDNESDAY, Feb. 24 (HealthDay News) -- In adult kidney transplant patients, belatacept -- a selective costimulation blocker -- is associated with better renal function and similar patient/graft survival at one year compared to cyclosporine, with these benefits also seen in recipients of extended criteria donor kidneys, according to two studies published online Feb. 16 in the American Journal of Transplantation.
Nephron-Sparing Surgery Viable Option in Kidney Cancer
WEDNESDAY, Feb. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Nephron-sparing surgery confers the same degree of cancer control as radical nephrectomy when treating T1bN0M0 renal cell carcinoma, according to a study in the February issue of Urology.
Physicians Working Fewer Hours for Lower Fees
TUESDAY, Feb. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians in the United States have been working fewer hours for lower fees in the past decade, according to research published in the Feb. 24 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Novartis Updates Exjade Prescribing Information
MONDAY, Feb. 22 (HealthDay News) -- Novartis Oncology has alerted health care professionals about changes in the prescribing information for deferasirox (Exjade), a treatment for chronic iron overload due to blood transfusions in patients 2 years of age and older, according to a Feb. 18 safety alert issued by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Mouse Experiment Finds New Biomarkers for Lupus Nephritis
MONDAY, Feb. 22 (HealthDay News) -- The elevation of total urinary protease and several urinary proteins may offer novel biomarkers in the diagnosis of lupus nephritis, according to a mouse study in the Feb. 15 issue of the Journal of Immunology.
Cell-Free DNA Integrity May Serve as Marker in Kidney Cancer
MONDAY, Feb. 22 (HealthDay News) -- Serum cell-free DNA (cf-DNA) integrity may serve as a predictive marker for the diagnosis and detection of clear renal cell carcinoma (cRCC), according to a study in the February issue of Urology.
Medical Checklists Needed to Improve Care and Outcomes
MONDAY, Feb. 22 (HealthDay News) -- The checklists so common in aviation and many professions are underused in medicine and, if more widely adopted, would provide powerful tools to standardize care and improve patient outcomes, according to an article published Dec. 31 in Critical Care.
Avosentan Reduces Protein Loss, Has Serious Side Effects
FRIDAY, Feb. 19 (HealthDay News) -- The endothelin antagonist avosentan reduces urinary protein loss in patients with type 2 diabetes and nephropathy, but substantially increases the risk of cardiovascular events, according to a study published online Feb. 18 in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.
Drug Combo Shows Benefits in Chronic Kidney Disease
THURSDAY, Feb. 18 (HealthDay News) -- In hypertensive patients with high cardiovascular risk, benazepril and amlodipine are better at reducing progression of chronic kidney disease (CKD) than benazepril with hydrochlorothiazide, according to research published online Feb. 18 in The Lancet.
Erythropoiesis-Stimulating Agents Safety Plan Approved
WEDNESDAY, Feb. 17 (HealthDay News) -- Under a new safety plan approved Feb. 16 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, physicians will be required to provide all patients prescribed Erythropoiesis-Stimulating Agents (ESAs) with a Medication Guide, and to receive specific training and certification for the proper use of these agents in cancer patients receiving chemotherapy.
Chronic Conditions Becoming More Common in Children
TUESDAY, Feb. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Chronic health conditions have become increasingly more common in children in recent decades, according to research published in the Feb. 17 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
H. Pylori Often Unrelated to Children's Gastrointestinal Pain
TUESDAY, Feb. 16 (HealthDay News) -- In pediatric patients with gastrointestinal symptoms, Helicobacter pylori infection is not likely associated with recurrent abdominal pain (RAP), but it may be associated with unspecified abdominal pain (UAP) and epigastric pain, according to a review published online Feb. 15 in Pediatrics.
Metastatic Prostate Cancer Mechanism Identified
MONDAY, Feb. 15 (HealthDay News) -- An oncogene tumor-suppressor cascade may drive metastatic prostate cancer, according to research published online Feb. 14 in Nature Medicine.
Lifestyle Changes Found to Improve Endothelial Function
MONDAY, Feb. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Lifestyle changes such as a low-fat diet and regular exercise improve endothelial function and inflammatory markers of atherosclerosis in patients with coronary artery disease (CAD), according to a study published in the Feb. 1 issue of the American Journal of Cardiology.
2009 H1N1-Related Deaths and Hospitalizations Examined
MONDAY, Feb. 15 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has provided updated estimates of the 2009 H1N1 cases, related hospitalizations and deaths, with approximately 57 million cases occurring between April 2009 and January 2010.
Fenofibrate Linked to Lower Creatinine Clearance
FRIDAY, Feb. 12 (HealthDay News) -- Long-term use of fenofibrate in type 2 diabetes is linked to lowered measures of renal function but has no effect on albumin excretion rate, according to research published in the February issue of Diabetes Care.
Stenosis Can Still Exist in Absence of Coronary Calcium
FRIDAY, Feb. 12 (HealthDay News) -- In contradiction of professional guidelines, the absence of coronary calcification in blood vessels does not rule out the potential existence of stenosis, and should not be used to decide if revascularization is needed, according to a study in the Feb. 16 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.
Mnemonic Device for Patient Decision-Making Assessed
FRIDAY, Feb. 12 (HealthDay News) -- Clinicians who must quickly assess a patient's capacity to make an emergency treatment decision can now fall back on a new mnemonic device, "CURVES," developed at Johns Hopkins University and reviewed in the February issue of Chest.
Vesicoureteral Reflux Treatment in Children Studied
FRIDAY, Feb. 12 (HealthDay News) -- The treating hospital is the most important factor affecting treatment choice in children with vesicoureteral reflux (VUR), a condition characterized by an abnormal flow of urine from the bladder back into the ureter, according to research published online Feb. 8 in Pediatrics.
Laparoscopic Practice Takes Physical Toll on Surgeons
THURSDAY, Feb. 11 (HealthDay News) -- Many surgeons who perform laparoscopic surgery suffer pain, numbness, stiffness, fatigue and other physical symptoms, often as a result of high case load, according to a study published online Dec. 24 ahead of print in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons.
Dietary Supplement Suspected of Causing Selenium Poisoning
THURSDAY, Feb. 11 (HealthDay News) -- A liquid dietary supplement that contained 200 times the labeled concentration of selenium caused a widespread outbreak of selenium poisoning affecting 201 people in 10 states, according to a study published in the Feb. 8 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.
Youth Cardiovascular Risk Factors Linked to Early Death
WEDNESDAY, Feb. 10 (HealthDay News) -- Cardiovascular risk factors in childhood are associated with a higher rate of premature death from endogenous causes, according to research published in the Feb. 11 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.
AHRQ: U.S. Adults Seeing Big Barriers to Specialty Care
WEDNESDAY, Feb. 10 (HealthDay News) -- In 2007, about one in 13 of U.S. adults reported that access to specialist care was a "big problem," according to a December report issued by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ).
FDA Initiative Aims to Cut Medical Radiation Exposure
WEDNESDAY, Feb. 10 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has launched a new initiative that aims to reduce exposure to radiation from computed tomography (CT), nuclear medicine studies and fluoroscopy, the three procedures that are the main sources of medically-related radiation exposure.
H1N1 Vaccination Still Highly Recommended
MONDAY, Feb. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Despite H1N1 virus levels stabilizing, transmission remains an issue and vaccination continues to be an effective option for prevention of this potentially serious condition, according to a Feb. 5 press briefing by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.
Many American Adults Do Not Get Recommended Vaccines
MONDAY, Feb. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Although most parents ensure their children are vaccinated, adults often do not receive recommended vaccinations themselves, according to a new report, Adult Immunization: Shots to Save Lives.
Coalition Launches Campaign to Limit Residents' Hours
FRIDAY, Feb. 5 (HealthDay News) -- To prevent medical errors caused by doctor fatigue, a coalition of public interest and patient safety groups is urging the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) to limit the amount of time residents must work without sleep to 16 hours and to increase resident supervision.
Health Care Spending Makes Record Leap in GDP Share
THURSDAY, Feb. 4 (HealthDay News) -- A growth in health spending in 2009, coupled with a sagging economy, created the largest one-year jump in health care's share of the nation's gross domestic product since 1960, according to an article published online Feb. 4 in Health Affairs.
Diversity Growth Incremental in the Medical Professions
THURSDAY, Feb. 4 (HealthDay News) -- One hundred years after the Flexner Report recommended closing five of the seven African-American medical schools then extant, African-Americans and other minorities remain grossly underrepresented in the medical professions, according to an article in the February issue of Academic Medicine.
The Lancet Retracts Study Linking MMR Vaccine, Autism
WEDNESDAY, Feb. 3 (HealthDay News) -- On Feb. 2, The Lancet retracted a controversial 1998 study that linked the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine to autism and gastrointestinal problems.
Significance of Proteinuria Levels in Kidney Failure Studied
TUESDAY, Feb. 2 (HealthDay News) -- At a given level of estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR), individuals with higher levels of proteinuria face greater risks of mortality, myocardial infarction, and progression to kidney failure, according to research published in the Feb. 3 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
President Proposes $911 Billion Budget for HHS
TUESDAY, Feb. 2 (HealthDay News) -- As part of his 2011 budget proposal, President Barack Obama has proposed $911 billion for the U.S. Health and Human Services (HHS) Department, according to a Feb. 1 announcement by the secretary of HHS, Kathleen Sebelius.
Partial Nephrectomy Use Low for Renal Cell Carcinoma
MONDAY, Feb. 1 (HealthDay News) -- The use of laparoscopic radical nephrectomy may have reduced the use of partial nephrectomy for renal cell carcinoma, according to research published in the February issue of The Journal of Urology.
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