"Bowing and curtsying have replaced handshakes and hugs in northern Angola as health workers battle a deadly viral outbreak that has killed 237 people and left victims too scared to go to hospital."

This week's Grand Rounds is up
Come get the weekly best of the medical blogosphere.

Daily Kos is keeping track of all the misleading "Physicians of the Year"
Don't be duped by these meaningless awards. Previously mentioned here. (via Blogborygmi)

With COX-2's vanquished, are NSAIDs next?
"'To the best of our knowledge, these are the first data to support putting a box warning on NSAIDs, not just cox-2s,' said Dr. Andrew Dannenberg, a Cornell University scientist who helped do the Norway study."

Jury awards mother of brain-damaged boy $17 million in lawsuit
"Lafferty's case centered on an ultrasound examination that was performed before she gave birth.

Because of a rare medical condition called fetal maternal hemorrhage, the child lost 75 percent of his blood before birth, had to be resuscitated after an emergency delivery by Caesarean section and was left with serious brain damage, impaired vision and cerebral palsy.

Dr. ...

Read more...

Always have a chaperone during intimate exams

A patient caught fire during emergency heart surgery
"The male patient, who was not identified, went up in flames after alcohol poured on his skin was ignited by a surgical instrument."

Cuts in Medicare reimbursements will hurt patients the most
"Not only would many doctors stop accepting new Medicare patients, but they would be forced to put off investments in their practices that could improve patient care, the poll found . . .

. . . This concern is underscored in the AMA member survey, which found that more than half of physicians plan to defer purchases of ...

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This editorial applauds anesthesiologists in their efforts to reduce malpractice
"The anesthesiologists discovered that the best way to reduce malpractice premiums is to reduce malpractice. Other specialties are slowly coming around to the same way of thinking, but they need to do more - for their patients and for themselves."

A pro and con article on malpractice reform

Gifts to doctors from drug companies have implications for patient interests
"And the drug companies are getting more and more sophisticated about their marketing techniques. Now they can go to the American Medical Association and buy biographical data on individual doctors including their prescription license numbers. Then they can buy information from pharmacies about what a particular physician is prescribing and keep track of what tends to influence him ...

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Don't believe what you see on TV: More drug ads are found to mislead
"Bayer's 'My Man' television ad, featuring a woman talking about the experience of her male partner, suggested Levitra was superior to other impotence treatments 'when this has not been demonstrated,' the FDA said.

With Zyrtec, the agency objected to three print advertisements depicting allergy sufferers on an airplane or in an office. The promotions gave ...

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The NEJM details a case of myocarditis
This is what I believe Red Sox manager Terry Francona has. Some lasting effects from this disease:

Whereas most patients with acute viral myocarditis recover spontaneously, a dilated cardiomyopathy develops in approximately one in five patients. As for all patients with systolic dysfunction, treatment primarily includes angiotensin-converting"“enzyme inhibition and beta-blockade. Given the role of autoimmunity in myocarditis-induced damage, immunosuppressive therapy ...

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A sequel to a previous post comes this ad for Lexapro. Seems nice enough on the first page . . .



. . . but that's still a lot of fine print to read.

I'll be your bop buddy
MD Net Guide writes about the medical blogosphere. Here's what they say about Kevin, M.D., under "The Blog as Bop Buddy":

All of the foregoing is certainly noble enough, but there comes a time in every physicianÂ’s life when he or she just wants a place to tell a funny story, scream to the heavens about the frustrations of HIPAA compliance, complain about a ...

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The doctor in the Carolina Panther's steroid probe is suspended
"The South Carolina Board of Medical Examiners said Dr. James Shortt prescribed the steroid testosterone to four unidentified male patients 'in doses and frequencies that were extremely unlikely to have been prescribed with any legitimate medical justification.'"

I had mentioned previously that there didn't seem to be much evidence to support what he was doing. Apparently he's ...

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A pain specialist is sentenced 25-years in prison
"Prosecutors said Hurwitz turned a blind eye to patients who were obvious drug addicts and dealers, and that his waiting room was at times filled with stoned, sleeping patients with track marks on their arms from drug abuse.

Hurwitz frequently prescribed 100 tablets or more of OxyContin for his patients as they developed tolerance to lesser doses, and at least one ...

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Let's hear it for "doctor control"
"According to statistics provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, there is an interesting correlation between accidental deaths caused by guns and those caused by doctors. There are 700,000 physicians in the U.S. that cause 120,000 accidental deaths each year. Accidental death per physician is 0.171 percent. There are 80 million gun owners in the U.S. responsible for 1,500 accidental gun ...

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Meet the only neurosurgeon in southern Illinois
"After only four days in business, Dr. Allan Gocio can point to three operations, 30 patients seen and two more surgeries scheduled this week."

The NY Times talks about Medicare pay-per-performance
I still think that the biggest obstacle would be physicians turning away the sickest patients to help their performance measures.

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