Top stories in health and medicine, October 22, 2014From MedPage Today:

  1. Office Visits Linked to National HTN Control. While hypertension treatment rates have risen over the past decade, but control of hypertension may have plateaued, according to a national study that suggested regular office visits as a key factor.
  2. A Youthful Approach to Breast Cancer Prevention. Most of us are ...

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Top stories in health and medicine, October 21, 2014From MedPage Today:

  1. Study Links Enterovirus in Kids to T1D. Enterovirus infection may be tied to the development of type 1 diabetes.
  2. LVAD Patient Education Misses the Mark. Patient information on left ventricular assist devices (LVAD) is biased in favor of the device, and is suboptimal for helping people determine their pros ...

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Every so often you have a patient in your practice that you sort of know, but really don’t. You’ve seen the name somewhere, but your mind draws a blank when asked about him. You may even have a vague idea of what he looks like, but if he were to bump into you on the street, you won’t even recognize him, despite the fact that you’ve been inside his heart ...

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A friend of mine, a diabetic who has been pretty passive about his medical care, suddenly learned the importance of patient engagement a few weeks ago when a matter affecting his pocketbook grabbed his attention. A bill arrived from Express Scripts, the pharmacy benefit manager (PBM) for Emblem Health, a Medigap plan offered to former New York City employees. For years my friend had been taking the drug gemfibrozil that diabetics ...

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Top stories in health and medicine, October 16, 2014From MedPage Today:

  1. Pfizer, FDA Square Off on Chantix Psych Risk. The maker of the popular stop-smoking drug varenicline (Chantix), Pfizer, says new data indicate the risk of suicidality and other serious psychiatric events is not as great as once thought, and has applied to the FDA to remove a boxed warning on those ...

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Top stories in health and medicine, October 15, 2014From MedPage Today:

  1. Ebola: Are Community Hospitals Up to the Task? With the announcement that a nurse in Dallas contracted Ebola while caring for an infected patient in a community hospital, calls are increasing to treat the disease only in centers specializing in treatment of highly contagious and highly virulent diseases.
  2. Unneeded ...

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He had called the other day to update me up on his condition.  He did not sound upset, but resolute.  "They offered me peritoneal dialysis," he said, "but I decided against it and figured I'd just let nature take its course.  The hospice people are so wonderful -- I've got things all set here at home, but I have two questions.  What should I do about my warfarin?  You know, ...

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Top stories in health and medicine, October 9, 2014From MedPage Today:

  1. Obese Kids Face Greater Risk for Heart Disease. The adverse long-term influence of obesity and elevated blood pressure on left ventricular remodeling begins in childhood, according to findings from the world's longest running biracial heart study.
  2. IBM's Watson Comes to the Bedside. If a physician or a patient could ...

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The ALS wave has finished sweeping the nation, resulting in a flood of over $100 million raised to fight a devastating disease which is actually quite rare. Now that gallons of ice water have drenched American’s bikinis and trunks, we should be asking ourselves two questions. First, does everyone really understand more about the disease now that the challenge is over? Second, and more importantly, what lessons can we learn ...

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Twenty-five years ago, the New England Journal of Medicine issued a report on a stunning new medical discovery: Aspirin helps prevent heart attacks. Yes, good ol’ aspirin. Known since the time of Hippocrates for its magical abilities to quell fever and pain, it took only 2,000 years for us to understand the science of it well enough to design a ‘sufficiently powered’ double-blind, placebo-controlled randomized trial on aspirin’s efficacy in preventing heart attacks. The Physicians’ ...

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