Meds

What the H1N1 vaccine recall means for kids

Originally posted in MedPage Today

by Todd Neale, MedPage Today Staff Writer

Sanofi Pasteur has recalled about 800,000 pediatric doses of its vaccine against pandemic H1N1 influenza because of low potency, the CDC announced, but the agency is not calling for revaccinations.

The recalled doses come from four lots of 0.25-mL prefilled syringes for pediatric use in both 10-packs (lot numbers UT023DA, …

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The risk of death from OxyContin and other narcotic drugs

Originally published in Insidermedicine

The alarming risk of death associated with the use of prescribed narcotic drugs, particularly OxyContin, is highlighted in a study published in the latest issue of the Canadian Medical Association Journal.

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Ecstasy increases sleep apnea risk

Originally published in Insidermedicine

Repeated use of the club drug MDMA, which is known on the street as “ecstasy” increases the risk of the breathing disorder known as sleep apnea, according to research published in journal Neurology.

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Tamiflu kills babies, and other H1N1 flu pandemic misconceptions

Originally published in MedPage Today

by Todd Neale, MedPage Today Staff Writer

As one of the two MedPage Today writers on full-time H1N1 duty since the beginning of the outbreak in April, I feel like I know the issues well enough to help clear up misconceptions when they come up in conversation.

medpage-today1The other day, just such a situation presented itself. An …

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Pharma, evidence, and trust

by David Rind, MD

A number of the other blogs that have noted the existence of this blog seem to have “Pharma” in their titles in one way or another, and the implication is not that the blogger likes much about Big Pharma.

In the late 1990s, when I was spending much of my clinical time providing HIV care, I was a defender of Pharma on Usenet, at least as it related …

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Which drugs increase the risk of falling in the elderly?

Originally published in Insidermedicine

Three distinct types of drugs that affect mental processes can increase the risk of falling when taken by adults over 60, according to research published in the latest edition of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Doctors can improve treating LDL cholesterol

Originally posted in Insidermedicine

Identification and treatment of individuals with high LDL or “bad” cholesterol has improved in recent years, but patients are still slipping through the cracks, according to a survey published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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A vocal minority of skeptical doctors are against the H1N1 flu vaccine

My position on the H1N1 flu vaccine is clear: everyone should get it.

But not every physician shares that sentiment. The Washington Post reports that there are a minority who are unconvinced of the vaccine’s safety and believe the H1N1 pandemic is over-hyped.

Worse, they aren’t vaccinating their patients. And when you’re talking about pediatricians, that can mean trouble for their patients; children who are most susceptible to the …

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How does Zetia and niacin affect the carotid intima-media thickness (CIMT)?

Originally published in MedPage Today

by Peggy Peck, MedPage Today Executive Editor

By a margin of 0.014 mm in carotid intima-media thickness (CIMT), extended-release niacin (Niaspan) demonstrated superiority over ezetimibe (Zetia) as an add-on for high risk patients on long term statin therapy.

But is a difference of 0.014 mm clinically significant?

The niacin versus ezetimibe findings come from the ARBITER 6-HALTS trial, …

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How should the FDA regulate the social media advertising of drugs?

Originally published in MedPage Today

by Emily P. Walker, MedPage Today Washington Correspondent

Drug and device makers are urging the FDA to establish clear guidelines that will allow the industry to discuss and promote products in the unsettled world of online social media.

The FDA is hearing testimony from drug and device companies, online marketing experts, and consumer groups about what steps the …

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Niacin beats Zetia in the ARBITER 6-HALTS trial, and what this means for ezetimibe

Originally published in MedPage Today

by Peggy Peck, MedPage Today Executive Editor

Boosting HDL cholesterol with extended-release niacin (Niaspan) is a more effective way of slowing atherosclerosis in high-risk patients on long-term statin therapy than seeking additional LDL cholesterol reductions by adding ezetimibe (Zetia), researchers here reported.

Compared with ezetimibe, 2 grams of niacin led to significant reductions in both the mean …

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Patients who want the H1N1 vaccine need to be triaged

by Kairol Rosenthal

I am a young adult cancer patient who waited five and a half hours for the H1N1 vaccination along with 1200 other Chicagoans in a city college hallway. I do not have the trained eye of a public health analyst, yet it was easy to spy the glaring flaws that occurred in the whimsical distribution of this short supply vaccine. One of these oversights was the absence …

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What is the best insulin regimen for patients with diabetes?

Originally published in Insidermedicine

The best method for taking insulin among individuals with type 2 diabetes has been identified in research published in the latest issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Do antipsychotic drugs cause weight gain in children?

Originally published in Insidermedicine

Second-generation antipsychotic drugs can produce unwanted weight gain and other metabolic effects among children and youths after only a few weeks, according to research published in the latest issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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H1N1 vaccine adverse events, and how to reassure patients

Originally published in MedPage Today

by Crystal Phend, MedPage Today Senior Staff Writer

Failure to account for background rates when considering adverse events from pandemic H1N1 flu vaccination could spark public panic, researchers cautioned.

Coincidental cases of dramatic events including sudden death, Guillain-Barré syndrome, and spontaneous abortion can be expected to boost the true incidence of adverse events after immunization, said Steven …

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Poll: Should boys get Gardasil, the HPV vaccine?

The FDA recently approved the vaccine against human papillomavirus for use in boys and men to prevent genital warts. The vaccine has been used successfully in females to prevent cervical cancer, which is associated with the virus.

But should we recommend the vaccine for men?

Studies have concluded that the HPV vaccine was successful in reducing the incidence of genital warts in men, which is associated with cancers of the anus, …

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Beware using the web for H1N1 pandemic flu drugs

Originally published in MedPage Today

by Michael Smith, MedPage Today North American Correspondent

The Internet can be a great source of information about the pandemic H1N1 flu, but it’s also the mother lode of swine flu scams, the FDA is warning.

The agency says consumers should beware of products sold over the Internet that claim to diagnose, prevent, treat, or cure the …

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This is why children need the H1N1 flu vaccine

by Crystal Phend, MedPage Today Senior Staff Writer

The pandemic H1N1 influenza virus continues to disproportionately attack the young, the CDC warned.

Children and adults under age 25 have accounted for 53% of hospitalizations for laboratory-confirmed H1N1 and 23.6% of related deaths since Sept. 1, the agency reported at a press briefing.

Seniors, on the other hand, have accounted for just 7% of …

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Have drug companies really curbed gifts to doctors at medical conferences?

by Roberta Friedman, PhD

Banning pharmaceutical companies from handing out token items to doctors at conferences is so tip of the iceberg.

I have tales to tell of conferences past, where the excesses were beyond farcical. As a medical reporter covering such meetings, I have seen everything. When my kids were young, I enjoyed roaming the floor of the exhibit hall along with the docs, collecting such swag as bouncy balls that …

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