Conditions

Radiologists and communicating mammogram results to patients and their doctors

by an anonymous radiologist

I recently read the article and comments on this link from this post, concerning radiologists, from Musings of a Dinosaur.

I was disturbed to discover the animosity with which this topic is covered. The tenor of the blog is that radiologists are greedy, self-serving and are out to erode the doctor-patient relationship. The suggestion that radiologists would schedule percutaneous breast biopsies for their financial enhancement is both …

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Why suffering patients find their way to psychiatrists

“Psychiatrists may be the last batch of physicians who are still granted a luxurious amount of time with patients.”

So says Maria, a psychiatrist who blogs over at intueri.

And because time is so undervalued without our health system, some doctors relying on psychiatrists to counsel patients in the hospital. She cites an example with surgeons, saying that “it is entirely unfair to both the patient and the psychiatrist for the …

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How to protect yourself from abdominal aortic aneurysms

by Mark Adelman, MD

While diseases like prostate cancer and heart disease have become household concerns, abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAA), the 10th leading cause of death in men age 55 and older, have been overshadowed by more prominent diseases for far too long. It’s time we pull back the curtain and take a closer look at this serious disease and how it can be both detected and prevented.

An AAA, which …

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Is the flu a heart attack risk factor?

by Todd Neale, Staff Writer, MedPage Today

Flu appears to act as a trigger for myocardial infarction and cardiovascular death, a review of the literature showed.

medpage-today All observational studies included in the review found an association between times when influenza viruses were circulating and increases in cardiovascular death, according to Charlotte Warren-Gash, MBChB, of University College London, and colleagues.

There was …

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How will the H1N1 vaccine be distributed to patients?

by Michael Smith, North American Correspondent, MedPage Today

A minimum of 3.4 million doses of vaccine against H1N1 pandemic flu will be available in the first week of October, the CDC said.

medpage-today Those doses — all in the form of a live attenuated nasal spray vaccine — may be supplemented by some injectable vaccine, according to Jay Butler, MD, the …

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How long are you contagious after being infected with H1N1 influenza?

by Michael Smith, North American Correspondent, MedPage Today

People infected with the H1N1 pandemic flu strain continue to shed virus after the point where current recommendations say they can go back to work or school, two studies here suggested.

medpage-today The question, experts said, is whether those people are still contagious and whether a longer stay-at-home period would prevent enough additional …

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Don’t wait for the H1N1 vaccine before you get your flu shot

by Cole Petrochko, Staff Writer, MedPage Today

Don’t wait for the pandemic H1N1 vaccine to become available before getting an inoculation for seasonal flu, the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases warned.

medpage-today Putting off routine flu shots in hopes of one-stop-shopping would defeat the primary line of defense against a proven threat, according to a panel representing some of the nation’s …

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What does Tiger Woods have to do with medical futility and end-of-life care?

by Michael Kirsch, MD

Consider this hypothetical vignette. Tiger Woods accepts my challenge to play 18 holes. Obviously, the gallery would be packed with golf enthusiasts who would cancel job interviews, vacations and even worship services in order to witness this historic competition. Spectators would be permitted to place bets at even money. Perhaps, my mother would bet on me, but no other sane person would. They would properly conclude that …

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AMA: How to prepare for seasonal and H1N1 influenza

The following is part of a series of original guest columns by the American Medical Association.

by Nancy H. Nielsen, MD

This year’s flu season promises to be different than in years past. With the potential of both seasonal and H1N1 influenza circulating this year, it is more critical than ever that health care professionals proactively talk to their patients about influenza.

Many patients will be confused about who needs the H1N1 …

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A routine brain MRI can lead to incidental findings

by Nancy Walsh, Contributing Writer, MedPage Today

Almost 3% of healthy, asymptomatic people who underwent MRI brain scans showed incidental abnormalities in a recent study, leading researchers to express concern about about psychological and medical fallout from these increasingly popular screenings.

medpage-todayIn meta-analysis of MRI brain scans, the prevalence of neoplastic incidental findings was 0.70% (95% CI 0.47 to 0.98), while …

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A critically ill baby can lead to post-traumatic stress disorder in the parents

Parents who have a critically ill infant can exhibit symptoms later on similar to those who have been through war.

And indeed, this article in The New York Times draws parallels between the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) and a warzone, “with the alarms, the noises, and death and sickness.”

Infants in the NICU can cause the parents to experience multiple traumas, starting with a premature birth, where many of the …

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What Mozart can teach us about suberbugs and antibiotic resistance

by Maya Sequeira

Composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s death in 1791 has long been a mystery, but a new study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine suggests that it was, of all things, a common strep infection that killed the maestro at the age of 35.

Researchers speculate that Mozart contracted the strep infection—easily treatable today—from a fellow musician who had been hospitalized at a crowded military hospital in Vienna. It’s not …

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eRoentgen for the iPhone puts a radiologist by your side

The following is a sponsored guest post by Constantine Brocoum, a radiologist in Concord, NH. I have personally used eRoentgen, and recommend the product without reservation.

by Constantine Brocoum, MD

Like most inventions, eRoentgen was developed to respond to a need. As a practicing radiologist, I take frequent calls from primary care providers who need assistance in choosing the smartest way to diagnose their patients’ illnesses. They often need …

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H1N1 rap and a swine flu freestyle

Dr. John Clarke is the medical director of the Long Island Railroad and raps some sweet rhymes to H1N1.

“Hand sanatiza I advise ya get it why, it makes germs die when you rub and let it dry.”

Genius.

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How Twitter and blogging helped a patient with cancer

Here’s a fascinating slideshow presentation from a patient who took to Twitter and started a blog after being diagnosed with cancer.

Take a look at how social media helped him. His name is Maarten Lens-FitzGerald, and he blogs at Maartens Journey.

Maartens Journey presentation for Healthcare 2.0 event style=”margin:0px” width=”425″ height=”355″>Read more…

Is the test that finds the most cancers the best?

When it comes to mammograms, not always.

I’ve written previously that the major problem in cancer screening tests is that they are not specific enough. With both PSA tests looking for prostate cancer and mammograms screening for breast cancer, many lumps or lesions that are slow-growing will be diagnosed, but not necessarily lead to a patient’s death.

A good piece in the Los Angeles Times outlines the breast cancer screening …

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PSA screening and the overdiagnosis of prostate cancer

by Charles Bankhead, Staff Writer, MedPage Today

Only one of every 20 prostate cancer diagnoses leads to a benefit that would not have been realized without PSA screening, an analysis of 20-year trends suggests.

medpage-today An estimated 1 million excess diagnoses have accrued since 1986, and the incidence of prostate cancer remains well above levels that existed prior to widespread PSA …

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