A sobering conclusion

"The paucity of randomized controlled trials is in stark contrast to the plethora of 'hangover cures' marketed on the internet," wrote Max H. Pittler, Ph.D., a research fellow at the University of Exeter, and colleagues. "Our findings show no compelling evidence to suggest that any intervention is effective for preventing or treating alcohol hangover."

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A good idea.

"U. S. Cancer Death Rate Continues to Drop"

"...the death rate for all cancers was 193.6 per 100,000 [Americans], down from 195.7 a year earlier and continuing a steady downward trend."

Cowabunga! It is esoteric reports like these that make news headline writers drool with delight while the rest of of poor slobs try to understand how this minuscule mathematical mitigation helps to ease the pain of watching ...

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"Tall, narrow glasses may help reduce alcohol indulgence"

Is this real, or is this akin to what my old attending called "rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic?"

I could have sworn that knowing when to stop was the best way to prevent becoming gassed/plastered/stewed/tanked/jugged/blitzed/three-sheets-to-the-proverbial-wind (insert your own metaphor here: ___________).

Next thing you know we'll have a national shortage of these familiar cocktail glasses.

Na Zdrowie ...

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Times Online, on the fears that grip us at Christmas. For Sarah Vine, it's illness:

There is an upside to neurosis in that the true neurotic also enjoys the gift of prophecy. Worry enough about any problem and you can make it happen, no matter how highly the odds seem stacked against it. The healthy individual thinks herself thin or rich, the hand-wringing worrymonger thinks herself into a 102-degree fever, ...

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So, why do surgeons ask for abdominal CT's in patients with abdominal pain suspicious for appy?

Yes, I agree, they are from Satan.

So, what do you think about the morning after pill? Do you think it is an abortofacient or just contraception? Does the pregnancy begin at fertilization or at implantation? Some thoughts here.

Remember, always wear clean underwear and keep your feet warm!

Compassion amid horror


First Lt. Jeff Morgan watched with concern as Soad Jaffar al-Hasan cradled her precious baby girl, the mother's smile masking the inevitable.Morgan, a single father of five from Georgia, knew that in a few months, possibly weeks, Noor, al-Hassan's firstborn, would succumb to a birth defect.Noor, whose name means light in Arabic, was born with a severe form of spina bifida. Iraqi doctors lack the resources to treat her. ...

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A new stop smoking drug:

Drug maker Pfizer Inc. said Wednesday that the Food and Drug Administration will give a priority review to its stop-smoking medication.

A priority review means the FDA will review the drug's marketing application within six months rather than the standard 10. Pfizer said the six-month period will begin when the agency determines the application is sufficiently complete for review.

The drug to be reviewed ...

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Wow! Tamiflu to the rescue! Is there anything it can't do?

Roche announced today that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved a supplemental new drug application (sNDA) extending the prophylaxis (prevention) indication for Tamiflu® (oseltamivir phosphate) to include children ages one through 12. The leading prescription antiviral medication for prevention and treatment of influenza, Tamiflu was previously approved for prophylaxis in adolescents (age 13 years and older) ...

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The National Institute on Drug Abuse and the University of Michigan have released a new survey showing no change over the past year in the percentage of 8th, 10th and 12th grade students who smoke.

Is this simply due to cuts in state anti-smoking programs, or does it represent a change in the zeitgeist of a country grappling with several weighty issues? (portrayed in "B" movies by ...

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From Intueri:

Children should not be permitted to sing Christmas carols in the intensive care unit. People who have yet to lose all of their primary teeth do not need to catch glimpses of unconscious people who require mechanical ventilators to breathe. People who still have several years before they experience puberty do not need to witness people groaning with pain and discomfort while nurses pull bloody gauze packing out of ...

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For those who aren't familiar with me (and I'm sure you are legion), I run the joint across Blogtown known as The Cheerful Oncologist, where I compose tasty tidbits of literary effluvia on topics both mundane and majestic in the world of medicine. I tend to favor a Weltanschauung similar to that espoused by the great American philosopher Elbert Hubbard, who said "Don't take life too seriously. ...

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The U.S Food and Drug Administration has just approved the oral dual-target agent sorafenib (Nexavar) for the treatment of patients with advanced renal cell carcinoma. This is good news since standard chemotherapy has not been effective against these tumors.

This pill is just the first of an avalanche of new treatments called "targeted therapy" that will be put into general use over the next few years. Other agents ...

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I hitchhiked to the office this morning in a van with four strangers. People are nervous, but helpful. It reminded me of the blackout of 2004, when my wife and I walked home across Central Park at night with a flashlight. (Like others, we didn't have much of a choice.) Then as now, the strangers we met were uneasy, but friendly.

I hope the good attitude lasts. The hospitals ...

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Thanks to Kevin for trusting us and letting us play on his blog while he is (hopefully) on vacation. With any luck, we wont trash the joint. It's hard to imagine how an oncologist, nephrologist, ER/hospitalist, psychiatrist, pathologist (in a former life I think Dr. Bottles was a pathologist), and obstetrician could get into any trouble....guess, we'll see.

I'm all in favor of umbilical cord blood banking ...

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Shingles Vaccine

"Merck & Co Inc. filed a Biologics License Application (BLA) with the FDA on April 25 for ZOSTAVAX to reduce the risk of shingles and postherpetic neuralgia, the persistent, often debilitating long-term nerve pain that is the most common complication of shingles; and to reduce the total burden of pain and discomfort caused by shingles", Merck stated in a press release.


DrTony

Thanks, Kevin, for the trust and recognition implicit in inviting me to guest blog here. Yours was one of the first medblogs I found and it is a great place to keep up.

Jury returns $640,000 medical malpractice verdict

It is hard to tell from this brief article what the details of the case were. On one hand, it is frustrating to see physicians sued when a known ...

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