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February 2014 Briefing - Family Practice

Last Updated: March 03, 2014.

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Family Practice for February 2014. 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.

Higher Child BMI in Areas With Higher-Priced Fruits, Vegetables

FRIDAY, Feb. 28, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Children living in areas where fresh fruits and vegetables are more expensive have higher body mass indexes (BMIs), according to a study published online Feb. 10 in Pediatrics.

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CT Scans Don't Interfere With Cardiac Rhythm Devices

FRIDAY, Feb. 28, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Cardiac rhythm management devices should not be a cause for delaying computed tomography (CT) imaging procedures, according to research published online Feb. 26 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Low Vitamin D Tied to Markers of Inflammation in Elderly

FRIDAY, Feb. 28, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- There is a significant association between low vitamin D status and markers of inflammation (including the ratio of interleukin-6 [IL-6] to interleukin-10 [IL-10]) in elderly adults, according to a study published online Feb. 25 in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

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Going Live With EHR Leads to Frustrations, Productivity Hit

FRIDAY, Feb. 28, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Implementing an electronic health record (EHR) system takes excessive physician and staff time and disrupts practice, according to survey results published Feb. 24 in Medical Economics.

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Hospital Size, Market Share Affect Inpatient Care Prices

FRIDAY, Feb. 28, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Size and market share are the greatest differentiators between hospitals receiving low prices and high prices for inpatient care, according to a study published in the February issue of Health Affairs.

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Strokes in Young People Leave Many Disabled

FRIDAY, Feb. 28, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Strokes at a young age leave many young adults with long-lasting disability, according to a study published online Feb. 27 in Stroke.

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Antihypertensives Tied to Serious Fall Injuries in Elderly

FRIDAY, Feb. 28, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Antihypertensive medications are associated with an increased risk of serious fall injuries in the elderly, particularly among those with previous fall injuries, according to a study published online Feb. 24 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Excessive Tanning May Reflect Psychiatric Distress

FRIDAY, Feb. 28, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Excessive tanning may indicate the presence of psychiatric distress, according to research published in the March issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

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Stethoscopes Contaminated After Single Physical Exam

FRIDAY, Feb. 28, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Stethoscopes get contaminated after a single physical exam, with the contamination greater than that seen on most of the physician's dominant hand, barring the fingertips, according to a study published online Feb. 27 in the Mayo Clinic Proceedings.

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Becoming Disabled May Up Risk of Developing Diabetes

FRIDAY, Feb. 28, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Functional decline and physical disability may increase the subsequent risk of diabetes in older adults, according to research published online Feb. 18 in Diabetes Care.

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Nurse Education, Workload Impact Patient Post-Op Mortality

FRIDAY, Feb. 28, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Nurse staffing and education are associated with in-hospital mortality after common surgical procedures, according to a study published online Feb. 26 in The Lancet.

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High-Calorie, Enteral Diet Improves Survival in ALS Patients

FRIDAY, Feb. 28, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a high-calorie, enteral diet is safe and tolerable and improves survival, according to a small study published online Feb. 28 in The Lancet.

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Experts Offer Tips to Avoid Closing Practice to New Patients

THURSDAY, Feb. 27, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Despite being crowded, it may be a mistake to close a primary care practice to new patients, according to an article published in Medical Economics.

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Myocardial Injury Predicts Death After Noncardiac Surgery

THURSDAY, Feb. 27, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Myocardial injury after noncardiac surgery (MINS) is common and is an independent predictor of mortality, according to a study published in the March issue of Anesthesiology.

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FDA's New Food Labels Would Focus on Calories, Sugar Content

THURSDAY, Feb. 27, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration formally proposed Thursday updating the "nutrition facts" labels on food products to better reflect Americans' current eating habits and health concerns.

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Fertility Concerns Common for Young Women With Breast CA

THURSDAY, Feb. 27, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Fertility concerns are common among young women with newly diagnosed breast cancer, although only a minority pursue fertility preservation strategies, according to a study published online Feb. 24 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Review Examines Incretin-Based Drug, Pancreatic Safety Link

THURSDAY, Feb. 27, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Incretin-based drugs seem not to have a causal association with pancreatitis or pancreatic cancer, according to research published in the Feb. 27 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Risk of Psychiatric Morbidity Up for Offspring of Older Dads

THURSDAY, Feb. 27, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Advancing paternal age is associated with an elevated risk of psychiatric and academic morbidity in offspring, according to a study published online Feb. 26 in JAMA Psychiatry.

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Prevalence of Obesity Remains High in the United States

THURSDAY, Feb. 27, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The prevalence of obesity among youth or adults in the United States did not change significantly between 2003-2004 and 2011-2012, according to research published in the Feb. 26 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Smoking Adversely Impacts Renal Cell Carcinoma Survival

THURSDAY, Feb. 27, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with clear cell renal cell carcinoma, smoking exposure adversely impacts cancer-specific survival and increases the risk of death from another cause, according to a study published in the March issue of The Journal of Urology.

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Cardiovascular Risk Increased in Month After Partner Death

THURSDAY, Feb. 27, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For elderly adults, the death of a partner is associated with an increased risk of myocardial infarction (MI) and stroke, as well as other rarer cardiovascular events, according to a study published online Feb. 24 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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CT May Be Avoided With Isolated Vomiting in Peds Head Trauma

THURSDAY, Feb. 27, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Children with minor blunt head trauma who present with isolated vomiting may not need a computed tomography (CT) scan to look for traumatic brain injury, according to research published online Feb. 21 in the Annals of Emergency Medicine.

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Review: AHA Should Include Depression As Risk Factor in ACS

THURSDAY, Feb. 27, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Evidence suggests that depression should be considered a risk factor for adverse outcomes in patients with acute coronary syndrome, according to a scientific statement from the American Heart Association published online Feb. 24 in Circulation.

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HIV Specialist Training Available for Nurse Practitioners

THURSDAY, Feb. 27, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A new curriculum with specialized HIV training has been developed for nurse practitioners (NPs) at the Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing (JHUSON).

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Low-Normal TSH Deemed Risk Factor for Depression in Elderly

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 26, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Low-normal thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) is a risk factor for depression in the elderly, according to a study published online Feb. 24 in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

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Prenatal DNA Test Bests Standard Screening in General Population

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 26, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Maternal plasma cell-free DNA (cfDNA) sequencing for trisomies 18 and 21 gives five- to 10-fold higher positive predictive values than standard aneuploidy screening in a general obstetrical population, according to a study published in the Feb. 27 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Cigarette Smoke Exposure Affects Bone Mineral Density

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 26, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Exposure to cigarette smoke (passive or active) is associated with lower bone mineral density (BMD) in the femoral neck and lumbar spine of men, according to a study published in the Feb. 15 issue of Spine.

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Vancomycin-Resistant Group B Streptococci Identified

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 26, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Laboratory-confirmed clinical group B streptococcus isolates showing vancomycin resistance have been identified, according to a letter to the editor published in the Feb. 27 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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FDA Explores 'Three-Person' Embryo Fertilization

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 26, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- U.S. Food and Drug Administration hearings opened Tuesday on a controversial fertilization technique that uses the DNA from three people -- two women and one man -- with the goal of preventing inherited genetic diseases.

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Cocaine Use Doesn't Raise In-Hospital Mortality With MI

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 26, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Cocaine users with myocardial infarction (MI) are younger and generally have fewer risk factors, and do not have increased odds of in-hospital mortality, according to research published in the March 1 issue of The American Journal of Cardiology.

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Hysterectomy and Ovary Removal Linked to Diabetes Development

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 26, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Postmenopausal women are at higher risk of developing diabetes if they have both a hysterectomy and bilateral oophorectomy, according to a study published in the March issue of Diabetes Care.

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Not All Acute Coronary Syndrome Patients Get Appropriate Tx

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 26, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Nearly one in five eligible patients hospitalized for acute coronary syndrome do not receive American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association (ACC/AHA) class I guideline-recommended angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor (ACEI) or angiotensin receptor blocker (ARB) therapy, according to a study published online Feb. 25 in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

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Daily Walks May Cut Risk of Hospitalization for COPD

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 26, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) who engage in regular physical activity may reduce the rate of hospitalization for COPD exacerbation, according to research published online Feb. 2 in Respirology.

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Review: Vegetarian Diet Linked to Lower Blood Pressure

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 26, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Consumption of a vegetarian diet is associated with lower blood pressure, according to a review and meta-analysis published online Feb. 24 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Use of In-Hospital Formula Reduces Breastfeeding

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 26, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Use of supplementation with in-hospital formula shortens the duration of breastfeeding among first-time mothers who intend to breastfeed exclusively, according to research published online Feb. 19 in The Journal of Pediatrics.

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Doctors Pleased With Congress' Medicare Payment Agreement

TUESDAY, Feb. 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Physician groups are expressing optimism over the Congressional agreement to revamp the Medicare physician payment system, according to an article published Feb. 26 in Medical Economics.

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Doctors Slower to Prescribe HTN Meds to Younger Patients

TUESDAY, Feb. 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Doctors wait longer to prescribe blood pressure medications to young adults than to older patients, according to a study published online recently in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

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Children's Behavior Problems Tied to In Utero Acetaminophen

TUESDAY, Feb. 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Maternal acetaminophen use during pregnancy is associated with a higher risk for hyperkinetic disorders (HKDs) and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)-like behaviors in children, according to a study published online Feb. 24 in JAMA Pediatrics.

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MMR Vaccine Timing, Sequencing Tied to Fewer Hospitalizations

TUESDAY, Feb. 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Receipt of live measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine on schedule and in correct sequence is associated with a lower rate of all infection-related hospital admissions for young children, according to a study published in the Feb. 26 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Earlier Ovary Removal Provides Greatest BRCA-Associated Benefit

TUESDAY, Feb. 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Among women with mutations in BRCA1 or BRCA2, oophorectomy reduces the risk of developing ovarian, fallopian tube, or peritoneal cancer by 80 percent and reduces the risk of death by 77 percent, with greater BRCA1 benefit seen with earlier removal, according to a study published online Feb. 24 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Research Agenda Developed for Teen Antipsychotic Rx Use

TUESDAY, Feb. 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Prioritized research agendas have been developed for antipsychotic use among adolescents and young adults and for the management of ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), according to two reports published online Feb. 25 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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More Than Seven Million Patient Record Breaches in 2013

TUESDAY, Feb. 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The number of patient records breached increased more than 137 percent and affected over seven million records in 2013, according to an annual report published by Redspin.

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HPV Vaccination Reduces Cervical Lesion Risk at Population Level

TUESDAY, Feb. 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Vaccination with the quadrivalent human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine is associated with reduced risk of atypia or worse (atypia+) or cervical intraepithelial neoplasia grade 2 or 3 (CIN2/3), according to a study published online Feb. 19 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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Adjuvant High-Dose Vitamin D3 Beneficial in Urticaria

TUESDAY, Feb. 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Adjuvant high-dose vitamin D3 is beneficial for patients with chronic urticaria, according to a study published online Feb. 7 in the Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology.

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Prognosis Worse for Secondary Versus Primary Thyroid Cancers

TUESDAY, Feb. 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Among adolescents and young adults, those who develop thyroid cancer as a secondary malignant neoplasm have decreased overall survival than those with primary thyroid cancer, according to research published online Feb. 24 in Cancer.

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Fever During Pregnancy Associated With Birth Defects

TUESDAY, Feb. 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Fever during pregnancy is associated with adverse health outcomes for the offspring, according to research published online Feb. 24 in Pediatrics.

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Review: Antibiotics Don't Avert Otitis, Pneumonia in Children

TUESDAY, Feb. 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For young children with undifferentiated acute respiratory infections (ARIs), current evidence does not support the use of antibiotics to prevent ear infections or pneumonia, according to a review published online Feb. 18 in The Cochrane Library.

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In Nonvalvular A-Fib, AAN Urges Routine Anticoagulation

TUESDAY, Feb. 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Most people with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation (NVAF) should be taking oral anticoagulants to prevent stroke, according to an American Academy of Neurology (AAN) guideline published in the Feb. 25 issue of Neurology.

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Juvenile Fibromyalgia Symptoms Often Persist Into Adulthood

MONDAY, Feb. 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Most adolescent patients with juvenile-onset fibromyalgia (JFM) have continued fibromyalgia symptoms into young adulthood, according to a study published online Feb. 24 in Pediatrics.

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USPSTF: Evidence Lacking for Vitamin Prevention of CVD, CA

MONDAY, Feb. 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) has found that the evidence is insufficient to evaluate the benefits and harms of multivitamins and most single- or paired-nutrient supplements for the prevention of cardiovascular disease and cancer. The Task Force findings have been published in a final recommendation statement available online Feb. 25 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Quality Measures Data Added to Physician Compare Website

MONDAY, Feb. 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Data for quality measures have been added to Physician Compare, the website that helps consumers search for information about physicians, according to a report published by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).

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London's Bike Sharing Program Has Health Benefits

MONDAY, Feb. 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- London's bike sharing program is having a positive impact on health, with clearer benefits seen for men and older users, according to a study published Feb. 13 in BMJ.

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Preventive Pediatric Health Care Recommendations Updated

MONDAY, Feb. 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Recommendations for preventive pediatric health care have been updated, according to an American Association of Pediatrics (AAP) policy statement published online Feb. 24 in Pediatrics.

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Distinct Effects for Excess Saturated vs Polyunsaturated Fat

MONDAY, Feb. 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Overeating saturated fats is associated with increased liver and visceral fat storage compared with overeating polyunsaturated fats, according to a study published online Feb. 18 in Diabetes.

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Obese Patients Affected by Perceived Judgment of Doctor

MONDAY, Feb. 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Patients who discuss weight loss with their physicians but do not feel judged may be more likely to attempt and succeed in losing weight, according to research published online Feb. 9 in Preventive Medicine.

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AAP Still Opposes Retail-Based Clinics for Pediatric Primary Care

MONDAY, Feb. 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) continues to oppose retail-based clinics (RBCs) as a source of pediatric primary care, according to a policy statement published online Feb. 24 in Pediatrics.

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Obstetricians Target Primary Cesarean Delivery Rate

MONDAY, Feb. 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Primary cesarean delivery rates can be safely reduced by implementing various interventions, according to a consensus statement published online in the March issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

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Repeat Biopsies Up Infection Risk in Prostate Cancer Patients

MONDAY, Feb. 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For men with prostate cancer who are under active surveillance, repeated biopsies are associated with increased risk of infectious complications, according to research published in the March issue of The Journal of Urology.

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'Epidemic of Diagnosis' Driving Thyroid Cancer Rates Up

MONDAY, Feb. 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The incidence of thyroid cancer increased nearly three-fold from 1975 to 2009, particularly in women, with the increase mainly attributable to papillary thyroid cancer, according to a study published online Feb. 20 in JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery.

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Mysterious Polio-Like Illness Strikes Children in California

MONDAY, Feb. 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A rare "polio-like syndrome" has caused paralysis in about 20 children from across California, according to a report released Sunday by physicians in the San Francisco Bay Area.

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FDA to Step Up Oversight of Indian Drug Makers

MONDAY, Feb. 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is to increase monitoring of drugs from pharmaceutical companies in India, FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg, M.D., said during a Friday afternoon news conference.

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More Older Men Have Skin Exams After Watching Educational Video

FRIDAY, Feb. 21, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Older men are more likely to have a whole-body skin exam done by their physician if they watch a video on skin self-examination and skin awareness, according to a study published online Feb. 19 in JAMA Dermatology.

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ACC Calls for Patient-Centered Approach in Cardiac Imaging

FRIDAY, Feb. 21, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Quality, patient outcomes, and costs must all be assessed in determining the appropriateness of noninvasive cardiovascular imaging, according to an American College of Cardiology (ACC) health policy statement published in the Feb. 25 issue of in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Psychological Factors Affect Skeletal Trauma Recovery

FRIDAY, Feb. 21, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For patients recovering from musculoskeletal trauma, psychological factors, especially catastrophic thinking, are associated with pain intensity and disability, according to a study published in the Feb. 5 issue of The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery.

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Patient-Centered Medical Homes Cut Care Costs

FRIDAY, Feb. 21, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Primary care practices that embrace the patient-centered medical home (PCMH) model reduce the cost of care and the number of patients treated inappropriately in the emergency department, according to an article published Jan. 15 in Medical Economics.

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Intensive Dialysis Improves Pregnancy Outcomes

FRIDAY, Feb. 21, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For women with end-stage renal disease (ESRD), intensive hemodialysis is associated with improved pregnancy outcomes, according to a study published online Feb. 13 in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

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Health Reform Associated With Fewer Behavioral Admissions

FRIDAY, Feb. 21, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Hospital admissions among young people with behavioral health disorders declined and emergency department visits increased less than in other states after the 2006 Massachusetts health reform, according to research published online Feb. 19 in JAMA Psychiatry.

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A Call for Epidemiologists to Study Food Contact Chemicals

FRIDAY, Feb. 21, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A population-based assessment and biomonitoring are needed to identify any potential links between food contact materials (FCMs) and chronic conditions, according to a commentary published online Feb. 19 in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health.

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Insurance Status Impacts Trauma Transfer/Admissions

FRIDAY, Feb. 21, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with severe injuries initially evaluated at a non-trauma center emergency department, admission versus transfer to a trauma center is more likely for patients with Medicaid or private insurance, compared with no insurance, according to a study published online Feb. 19 in JAMA Surgery.

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Novel Protocol Calculates Energy Needs, Physical Activity Ratio

FRIDAY, Feb. 21, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The PAR protocol has been validated as a new method for calculating the estimated energy requirements (EERs) and daily average physical activity ratio (APAR) at the population level, according to research published in the December issue of the Mayo Clinic Proceedings.

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Public Access Defibrillation Underutilized in Cardiac Arrest

FRIDAY, Feb. 21, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- In out-of-hospital (OOH) cardiac arrest, public access defibrillation (PAD) prior to ambulance arrival may be only rarely used, according to a study published online Feb. 19 in Heart.

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Sedentary Time Linked to Activities of Daily Living Disability

FRIDAY, Feb. 21, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For older U.S. adults, time spent in sedentary activity is associated with disability in activities of daily living (ADL), according to a study published online Feb. 19 in the Journal of Physical Activity & Health.

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Concurrent Opioid Prescribing by Multiple Providers Common

THURSDAY, Feb. 20, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For Medicare beneficiaries, concurrent opioid prescribing is common among those with four or more opioid providers, according to a study published Feb. 19 in BMJ.

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Surgeons Can Up Outcomes for Work-Related Lumbar Surgery

THURSDAY, Feb. 20, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with chronic disabling occupational lumbar disorder (CDOLD) and workers' compensation claims, lumbar fusion outcomes can be improved if opioid dependence and excessive length of disability after surgery are controlled through care, according to a study published in the Feb. 1 issue of The Spine Journal.

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Unfilled Hospital Openings for Doctors Growing, Survey Finds

THURSDAY, Feb. 20, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The need for hospital physicians is growing, according to an article published Jan. 3 in Medical Economics.

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Tamoxifen Found in Samples of Dietary Supplement

THURSDAY, Feb. 20, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Supplement users may be unaware of the presence of pharmacologically active substances in supplements, including tamoxifen that has been identified in samples of the dietary supplement Esto Suppress, according to a letter published online Feb. 13 in BMJ.

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>14 Percent of Women Given an Opioid Rx During Pregnancy

THURSDAY, Feb. 20, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Opioids are fairly commonly dispensed during pregnancy, with 14.4 percent of women dispensed an opioid at some point during pregnancy, according to a study published online Feb. 12 in Anesthesiology.

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Surface Defects, Distorted Tips Seen in Acupuncture Needles

THURSDAY, Feb. 20, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Surface irregularities and needle tip inconsistencies are commonly seen in acupuncture needles, according to a study published online Feb. 12 in Acupuncture in Medicine.

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ACC, AHA Releases Heart Disease, Stroke App for Docs

THURSDAY, Feb. 20, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A mobile and web-based app has been released to help health care professionals determine their patients' 10-year and lifetime risks of developing atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD).

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Direct Fitness Measures Better Predict Cardiometabolic Risk

THURSDAY, Feb. 20, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Directly measured fitness is more strongly associated with cardiovascular risk than self-reported physical activity level, according to research published in the Feb. 15 issue of The American Journal of Cardiology.

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Intracranial Carotid Artery Calcification Heralds Stroke

THURSDAY, Feb. 20, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Intracranial atherosclerosis predicts, and may significantly increase the risk of, stroke in the general white population, according to research published online Feb. 17 in JAMA Neurology.

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Prenatal Vitamin A Deficiency May Contribute to Asthma

THURSDAY, Feb. 20, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Early fetal retinoic acid (RA) deficiency is associated with altered airway smooth muscle phenotype, with RA restricting airway smooth muscle differentiation, according to an experimental study published in the Feb. 3 issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation.

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Obesity Complicates Elbow Fractures in Children

THURSDAY, Feb. 20, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Obesity is associated with more complex supracondylar humeral fractures in children, as well as with a greater risk of postoperative complications, according to research published in the Feb. 5 issue of The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery.

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FDA Approves Rx for Neurogenic Orthostatic Hypotension

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 19, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Northera (droxidopa) has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat neurogenic orthostatic hypotension (NOH), a rare, chronic condition characterized by a sudden drop in blood pressure when a person stands.

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Eardrops Most Effective in Tympanostomy-Tube Otorrhea

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 19, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Children with acute tympanostomy-tube otorrhea have significantly better outcomes after treatment with antibiotic-glucocorticoid eardrops compared with oral antibiotics or initial observation, according to a study published in the Feb. 20 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Before Implementation, Full EHR Cost Needs Consideration

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 19, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- From the outset of electronic health record implementation, hospitals and governments need to understand the major cost categories involved and identify the factors that may impact these costs, according to research published online Feb. 12 in the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association.

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Top Five Low-Value Actions ID'd in Emergency Medicine

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 19, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The top five tests, treatments, and/or disposition decisions that are of little value in emergency medicine have been identified, according to research published online Feb. 17 in JAMA: Internal Medicine.

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CAS, CEA Equally Effective for Long-Term Stroke Prevention

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 19, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with high-grade carotid artery stenosis, carotid angioplasty and stenting (CAS) and carotid endarterectomy (CEA) are equally effective for long-term prevention of ipsilateral ischemic stroke, according to a study published in the Feb. 1 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology: Cardiovascular Interventions.

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'Talking' Medical Devices, Apps Continue to Evolve

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 19, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- "Talking" medical devices and apps, among other techy health-focused inventions, can help people manage everyday wellness routines, such as taking pills and checking blood sugar levels, as well as dire medical circumstances, say experts.

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Research Supports Dangers of Drinking in Early Pregnancy

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 19, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Drinking moderate to large amounts of alcohol early in pregnancy may damage the placenta and reduce the amount of taurine delivered to the fetus from the mother, according to a study published online Feb. 4 in PLOS ONE.

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Stress Response Tied to Risk Aversion in Traders

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 19, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The stress response in traders is associated with greater risk aversion during periods of market volatility, which may contribute to market instability, according to a study published online Feb. 18 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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Home Exercise Program Improves Physical Function After Rehab

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 19, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For older patients, a home-based exercise program is beneficial after formal hip fracture rehabilitation has ended, according to a study published in the Feb. 19 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Post-Op Visits for Surgical Site Infections Generally Low

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 19, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For patients at low surgical risk undergoing ambulatory surgery, the rates of postsurgical visits for clinically significant surgical site infections (CS-SSIs) are low relative to all-cause postsurgical visits, according to research published in the Feb. 19 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Smoking Cessation Leads to Better Mental Health

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 19, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Those who stop smoking have significant improvements in mental health compared with those who continue to smoke, both in healthy and clinical populations, according to research published online Feb. 13 in BMJ.

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E. cuniculi Can Cause Febrile Illness After Transplant

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 19, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Solid organ transplant recipients who become febrile weeks after transplantation may have acquired microsporidiosis from Encephalitozoon cuniculi, according to a case series published in the Feb. 18 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Compression Device Noninferior to Meds Post-Arthroplasty

TUESDAY, Feb. 18, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For patients undergoing lower-extremity arthroplasty, a mobile compression device is noninferior to pharmacological protocols for the prevention of venous thromboembolism, according to a study published in the Feb. 5 issue of The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery.

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Online Ratings Do Affect Patient Choice of Physician

TUESDAY, Feb. 18, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- About two-thirds of the general U.S. population is aware of online physician rating sites, according to a research letter published in the Feb. 19 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Ablation May Be First-Line Option for Atrial Fibrillation

TUESDAY, Feb. 18, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Radiofrequency ablation is more effective than medications in treating previously untreated paroxysmal atrial fibrillation, suggesting that ablation may be considered as a first-line treatment, according to a study published in the Feb. 19 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Physicians More Likely to Be Burned Out Than Non-Doc Peers

TUESDAY, Feb. 18, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Trainees and early-career physicians are more likely to be burned out than control population samples, according to research published online Jan. 20 in Academic Medicine.

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Fitness, Not Fatness, Linked to Mortality in Prediabetes

TUESDAY, Feb. 18, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Unfit individuals with prediabetes have a higher mortality risk than fit individuals, regardless of adiposity measures, according to a study published in the February issue of Diabetes Care.

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Paper Gestational Age Wheels Generally Inaccurate

TUESDAY, Feb. 18, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Paper wheels are inaccurate for estimating date of confinement, according to a study published in the February issue of the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

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Best Practice Alerts Up Screening for Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm

TUESDAY, Feb. 18, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- An abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) screening program using electronic medical records (EMR) can increase AAA screening, a


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