From MedPage Today:

  1. Imaging May Aid in Predicting MS Progression. A measurement obtained through MR spectroscopy appeared to predict disability progression in multiple sclerosis (MS) patients.
  2. Invokana Monotherapy Promising for T2D Control. The SGLT2 inhibitor canagliflozin (Invokana) may be effective as monotherapy in type 2 diabetes patients who fail to control their disease with diet and exercise.
  3. Less Cardiac Screening May Suffice ...

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The day my brother became a statisticThis article was originally published on May 12, 2014 in MedPage Today's Ivan Today. My brother would have turned 37 today. But he didn't. On January 9, 1995, he died in a car accident, at the age of 17. That was the day he became a statistic. I don't usually need any reminders this time of year. If I somehow forget, May 12 is ...

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Some skills are best learned in childhood, like playing a musical instrument or speaking another language. Sure, you can learn these things later in life, but you’ll have to work harder and you may never play music or converse with the ease of someone who learned young. The same is true about learning how to talk openly with your doctor.  Kids develop their habits and attitudes about health care with every ...

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Remember the mothers of sick children "Motherhood is the hardest job you’ll ever love." I’m not sure who first coined that phrase, but its truth becomes clearer to me everyday. And nowhere is that truth more evident than in mothers of children with a serious illness. Throughout my years of working at this hospital, I’ve had the privilege of knowing dozens of moms who find themselves within these walls fighting ...

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Physicians today are challenged with the unique task of navigating the fundamental incompatibility between patient autonomy and the goals of public health. A few months ago, I faced that challenge when my elderly patient declined to receive the recommended influenza vaccine. “I respect my patients’ right to choose, but sometimes I’m concerned that they make choices based on fiction rather fact,” I reflected in a recent post. “It’s been ...

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My family’s world changed instantly upon receiving Annie’s diagnosis of apraxia and autism spectrum disorder (ASD) a day before her second birthday. Hearing three words, "she has autism," we suddenly faced a lifetime of uncertainty. I knew that I had to embrace my role as a mother of a child with autism, and as an autism champion -- and more critically, find a physician that I could form a trusted ...

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From MedPage Today:

  1. No Link Between Pot Use and Stroke Risk. There was no evidence that marijuana use was associated with an increased risk of ischemic stroke in adolescents and young adults.
  2. MERS Watch: First U.S. Case Reported. Health officials have confirmed the first U.S. case of the Middle East coronavirus.
  3. FDA Panel Nixes OTC Singulair. Montelukast (Singulair) should not be allowed ...

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Shakespeare said that brevity is the soul of wit. I say brevity is the soul of a good note. As a resident back in the early 90s I would look at office notes written by older, near-retiring physicians. I’d read these one or two lines written on 3 1/2-inch note cards, turn to my fellow residents and ask, “How can someone possibly document this way?” Years later, I realize the genius, ...

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I get asked a lot about essential oils.  I answer very little. Why? The answer is simply that we don’t know much about how or if they work.  Except from stories about how they have helped certain people in certain situations, no one has done a large studies to truly evaluate their effectiveness or safety. The main explanation for why they are used is that people (parents) are simply looking for something that’s an alternative to ...

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As I look back, I remember teachers.  One taught to be compulsive and complete.  Another, calm and humor in the face of chaos.  Another believed in me and thereby taught me to believe in myself.  One made me write and rewrite.  Above all, there was a mentor who opened my heart and eyes to the need for compassion.  That special teacher was Dr. Black. Tuesday afternoon, 8:30am, July 12, 1966:  Dr. ...

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