January 2013 Briefing - OrthopedicsLast Updated: February 01, 2013.
Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Orthopedics for January 2013. 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.
PhysioDirect Equal to Usual Care for Musculoskeletal Issues
WEDNESDAY, Jan. 30 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with musculoskeletal problems, PhysioDirect, a service which invites patients to telephone a physical therapist for initial assessment and advice, followed by face-to-face physical therapy if necessary, is similarly effective to usual care, but is associated with slightly lower patient satisfaction, according to a study published online Jan. 29 in BMJ.
Physicians Commonly Report Unsafe Hospital Workloads
TUESDAY, Jan. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians say they often face unsafe hospital workloads, according to a study published online Jan. 28 in JAMA Internal Medicine.
Back Pain Researchers Identify Current Priorities
TUESDAY, Jan. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Low back pain (LBP) primary care researchers indicate that the identification and management of specific subgroups of patients and translation of research into clinical practice should be the most important current priorities, according to a study published in the Jan. 15 issue of Spine.
Brain Scans Show Doctors Empathize With Patients
TUESDAY, Jan. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians who empathize with a patient in pain and feel relief when the patient receives effective treatment show activity in brain regions associated with pain relief and reward, according to a study published online Jan. 29 in Molecular Psychiatry.
Pedicle Subtraction Osteotomy Better With Two Surgeons
TUESDAY, Jan. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Using a two-surgeon strategy for pedicle subtraction osteotomies is associated with better outcomes, according to a study published in the January issue of Spine Deformity.
Substantial Increase in Spinal Interventional Techniques Seen
MONDAY, Jan. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Between 2000 and 2008, there was a nearly 108 percent increase in the number of Medicare recipients receiving spinal interventional techniques, according to a study published in the Jan. 15 issue of Spine.
FDA Panel Votes for Tougher Restrictions on Hydrocodone
FRIDAY, Jan. 25 (HealthDay News) -- A U.S. Food and Drug Administration advisory panel met Thursday and Friday to discuss the fate of certain painkillers that contain the opioid known as hydrocodone, concluding in a vote in favor of moving hydrocodone combination products into the more restrictive Schedule II category of controlled substances.
Psychological Factors Impact Upper-Extremity Disability
THURSDAY, Jan. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Psychological factors, including kinesiophobia and catastrophic thinking, are important predictors of the magnitude of upper-extremity-specific disability, according to a study published in the Jan. 2 issue of The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery.
ACPE Survey Finds Skepticism Relating to Online Doc Ratings
THURSDAY, Jan. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians are skeptical of online ratings, and believe that few patients use them, according to a survey published by the American College of Physician Executives (ACPE).
Back Pain Intensity Most Influential in Fusion Decision
THURSDAY, Jan. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Patients seeing a spine surgeon are most influenced by low back pain intensity when considering whether to proceed with spinal fusion surgery, according to a study published in the Jan. 15 issue of Spine.
Large Teaching Hospitals Face More Readmission Penalties
WEDNESDAY, Jan. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Large hospitals, teaching hospitals, and safety-net hospitals (SNHs) are more likely than other hospitals to be penalized under the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program (HRRP), according to a research letter published in the Jan. 23/30 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Care Transition Initiative Decreases Rehospitalizations
WEDNESDAY, Jan. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Communities instituting quality improvement initiatives for care transitions see significant declines in the rate of 30-day rehospitalizations and hospitalizations, according to a study published in the Jan. 23/30 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
High BMI Increases Risk of Chronic Low Back Pain Later
WEDNESDAY, Jan. 23 (HealthDay News) -- High body mass index (BMI) significantly increases the risk of chronic low back pain later, according to a study published in the Jan. 15 issue of Spine.
Early Predictors of Occupational Back Reinjury Identified
TUESDAY, Jan. 22 (HealthDay News) -- About 25 percent of workers with back injury report reinjury after returning to work, with risk factors including male sex, previous similar injury, and having health insurance, according to a study published in the Jan. 15 issue of Spine.
Efforts Failed to Up Primary Care, Rural Resident Training
FRIDAY, Jan. 18 (HealthDay News) -- The 2005 redistribution of graduate medical education (GME) funds did little to train more residents in primary care and in rural areas, according to a study published in the January issue of Health Affairs.
Post-Laminectomy Spine Strength Can Be Predicted
THURSDAY, Jan. 17 (HealthDay News) -- Following lumbar laminectomy, loss of strength and shear stiffness (SS) can be predicted in the human lumbar spinal segment using measurable parameters, according to a study published in the December issue of the European Spine Journal.
Even Brief Interruptions Dramatically Increase Errors
WEDNESDAY, Jan. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Even momentary interruptions of two to four seconds can significantly affect a person's ability to accurately complete a task requiring considerable thought, according to research published online Jan. 7 in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: General.
Family Docs Are Early Adopters of Electronic Health Records
WEDNESDAY, Jan. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Family practice physicians are adopting electronic health record (EHR) systems at a fast pace, with 68 percent using an EHR system by 2011, and 80 percent expected to be users by 2013, according to research published in the January/February issue of the Annals of Family Medicine.
Improved Driving Reaction Times After Lumbar Disc Sx
TUESDAY, Jan. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Driving reaction times (DRTs), which are increased for patients with radiculopathy, improve after lumbar disc surgery, according to a study published in the November issue of the European Spine Journal.
Certain Online Behaviors of Docs Warrant Investigation
MONDAY, Jan. 14 (HealthDay News) -- There is high consensus among state medical boards regarding the likelihood of probable investigations for certain online behaviors, according to a study published in the Jan. 15 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.
Top Five Issues for Docs and Patients Identified for 2013
MONDAY, Jan. 14 (HealthDay News) -- The top five issues that will impact physicians and patients in 2013 have been identified, according to a report published Dec. 10 by The Physicians Foundation.
Lower Cuff Pressure Reduces Wound Complications in TKA
MONDAY, Jan. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Lower tourniquet cuff pressure, achieved using a limb-occlusion pressure method, is associated with reduced postoperative wound complications after total knee arthroplasty, according to research published in the Dec. 19 issue of The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery.
National U.S. Health Care Spending Relatively Stable
FRIDAY, Jan. 11 (HealthDay News) -- The growth in national U.S. health care spending was relatively stable in 2011, but growth in personal health care spending accelerated, according to a study published in the January issue of Health Affairs.
Etanercept Seems Beneficial in Partial Spinal Cord Injury
THURSDAY, Jan. 10 (HealthDay News) -- Treatment of rabbits with a partial spinal cord injury (SCI) with the intramuscularly-administered tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) inhibitor etanercept is associated with improved clinical and electrophysiological recovery processes, according to research published in the December issue of the European Spine Journal.
SPIRIT 2013 Clinical Trial Protocol Guidelines Issued
THURSDAY, Jan. 10 (HealthDay News) -- A panel of experts, including trial investigators, trial coordinators, and representatives from ethics and regulatory agencies, has developed the Standard Protocol Items: Recommendations for Interventional Trials (SPIRIT) 2013 guidelines for the minimum content of a clinical trial, according to a statement published online Jan. 8 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.
Lumbar Extensor Training Improves Chronic Back Pain
THURSDAY, Jan. 10 (HealthDay News) -- An exercise regimen can improve functional status for men with chronic nonspecific low back pain (CNSLBP) without improving low back muscular morphology, according to a study published in the Dec. 15 issue of Spine.
Multiple Stressors Contribute to Readmission Within 30 Days
WEDNESDAY, Jan. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Nearly one-fifth of Medicare patients discharged from the hospital are readmitted within 30 days, which seems to arise from a combination of factors contributing to patient vulnerability, according to research published in the Jan. 9 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.
Meniscal Repair Failure About 23 Percent After Five Years
WEDNESDAY, Jan. 9 (HealthDay News) -- The long-term rate of failure after meniscal repair is similar for all techniques, with a pooled rate of 23.1 percent, according to a review published in the Dec. 19 issue of The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery.
Vitamin D Does Not Improve Knee OA Progression, Symptoms
WEDNESDAY, Jan. 9 (HealthDay News) -- For adults with symptomatic knee osteoarthritis (OA), vitamin D supplementation for two years does not reduce knee pain or cartilage volume loss compared to placebo, according to a study published in the Jan. 9 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Health Care Use Dropped Among All During Recession
TUESDAY, Jan. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Health care use declined significantly among all races and ethnicities during the recession from 2007 to 2009, with the only ethnic disparity being fewer physician visits by Hispanics compared with whites, according to a study published online Jan. 7 in JAMA Internal Medicine.
Impaired Cognition, Depression Common in Aging NFL Players
TUESDAY, Jan. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Retired professional football players may be more likely to have cognitive impairments or depression, which are associated with white matter abnormalities and changes in cerebral blood flow, according to a study published online Jan. 7 in JAMA Neurology.
Second Impact Syndrome Endangers Young Athletes
TUESDAY, Jan. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Neuroimaging scans performed after first and second head injuries in a high school football player may help physicians better understand a rare and devastating traumatic brain injury, known as second impact syndrome (SIS), that results from premature return to play, according to a case report published online Jan. 1 in the Journal of Neurosurgery: Pediatrics.
Study Questions Effect of Disc Replacement on Low Back Pain
MONDAY, Jan. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Although total disc replacement for chronic low back pain due to degenerative disc disease yields statistically significant improvements compared to conventional fusion, the clinical relevance is unclear and conclusions regarding effectiveness are hampered by low quality evidence and short follow-up, according to a study published in the Jan. 1 issue of Spine.
Shared Savings May Promote Care Coordination Entity Use
MONDAY, Jan. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Use of shared savings could encourage individuals who are dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid to enroll in state-designed care coordination entities (CCEs), according to a perspective piece published online Jan. 2 in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Cervical Spine Instabilities Frequently Develop in RA
MONDAY, Jan. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Nearly half of all patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) initially without any cervical spine instabilities will develop some type of instability within about five years, according to research published in the Dec. 15 issue of Spine.
Direct Costs for Low Back Pain Care in U.K. Are Substantial
THURSDAY, Jan. 3 (HealthDay News) -- The financial burden of caring for patients with chronic low back pain (CLBP) in the United Kingdom is twice that of caring for patients without CLBP, according to a study published in the Jan. 1 issue of Spine.
Fracture Risk Down With Adherence to Bisphosphonates
THURSDAY, Jan. 3 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with an osteoporotic fracture, adherence to bisphosphonate treatment is associated with reduced fracture risk; and for veterans with rheumatoid arthritis, non-adherence to bisphosphonate treatment is over 50 percent, according to two studies published in the December issue of Arthritis Care & Research.
Association Between Health Care Cost, Quality Inconsistent
THURSDAY, Jan. 3 (HealthDay News) -- The direction of the association between health care cost and quality is unclear, with inconsistent evidence indicating positive, negative, mixed, and indeterminate associations, according to a review published in the Jan. 1 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.
Surgery Consultation Common After MRI of the Spine
WEDNESDAY, Jan. 2 (HealthDay News) -- Almost half of patients whose primary care physicians recommend a lumbosacral or cervical spine magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan go on to receive a surgical consultation, but few end up undergoing spinal surgery, according to research published in the Jan. 1 issue of Spine.
House Joins Senate to Avert Medicare Cuts
WEDNESDAY, Jan. 2 (HealthDay News) -- The House of Representatives settled on an 11th-hour agreement late Tuesday night that has averted the widespread tax increases and spending cuts that would have gone into effect January 1. This agreement occurred 21 hours after the U.S. Senate did its part to steer the country clear of the "fiscal cliff."
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