An orthopedic surgeon is fined for endorsing the "AbEnergizer"
"An Encinitas orthopedic surgeon has been ordered to pay $175,000 for his endorsement of a device that claimed to tone muscles by sending an electric current into the users' body, attorneys announced Monday . . .

. . . According to the City Attorney's Office, Skyhar agreed to place his name and quotes on AbEnergizer packaging, and participated in an ...

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Only 1 in 3 people who were prescribed medications for hypertension and hyperlipidemia continued to take them after 6 months
"The researchers found that several factors were associated with the likelihood that patients would keep taking the medicines.

At the top was the number of other prescription drugs already being taken. The higher the number the greater the chance that the patients would stop the new medicines. So ...

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The "Quotable" Grand Rounds XXXV is up
Come get the weekly best of the medical blogosphere.

Crestor has more side effects than the other statins
"For the study, published online Monday by the American Heart Association's journal Circulation, researchers analyzed reports of side effects sent to the FDA for Crestor and compared them to the rates during the same time period for three other statins: Lipitor, Zocor and Pravachol.

'What we've shown is that amongst this family of drugs, Crestor has a poorer safety profile, ...

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Scores of convicted rapists and other high-risk sex offenders have been getting Viagra paid by Medicaid
"According to Hevesi, the problem is an unintended consequence of a 1998 directive from federal officials telling states that Medicaid prescription programs must include Viagra. His office discovered that the state was helping sex offenders pay for Viagra by checking Medicaid pharmacy expenditures against the stateÂ’s sex offender registry."

KidneyNotes takes a closer look at the CYP450 test
"I was curious about this cutting edge test that the author classified in the same category as, say, cholesterol profiling. When will patients begin asking for this test on their own? When will lawsuits be filed for adverse drug reactions that could have been potentially prevented by CYP450 testing?"

There's no question that the growth in radiologic imaging is driving up health care costs
"But experts fear people are getting scans they don't need, padding doctors' wallets and exposing themselves to radiation unnecessarily. And rising costs always raise the question of how much our health care system can afford."



With all the recent woes of pain management doctors, it seems like it hasn't affected many physicians' prescribing practices.

A physician diagnosed with breast cancer communicates with her doctors via text messaging
"'Can you text me my result?' I asked my colleague. She looked horrified. As breast radiologists and clinicians working in the screening service our most difficult job is to give bad news. But by text? Suddenly with black humour we could imagine the headlines, 'Patient receives diagnosis of breast cancer by text message.'"

An editor at Medical Economics has some common-sense ideas on how to fix Medicare
Here's one: "I'd also include a hefty carrot for doctors to keep their fees down: Patients taken on an assigned fee basis would give up their right to sue for malpractice. Instead, they'd agree to participate in a no-fault system, in which an expert panel would determine compensation for patients who have suffered preventable medical ...

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Some legal advice about protecting yourself from malpractice after a drug has been withdrawn
"You're obligated to stay informed about current studies concerning the safety and efficacy of all drugs that you are currently prescribing or have prescribed in the past. That means reading journals, attending CME courses, and heeding FDA warnings. Don't assume that you're protected from liability if there's no FDA recall. If the FDA or the ...

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A story of an ER doc doing an emergent tracheotomy - only previously having done them on dogs and cadavers
"It could only happen to a gangster— - or to an ED doctor like me. Three minutes ago, I'd never seen the guy. Now, with one slash of the scalpel, I slit his throat. From start to finish, it takes fewer seconds to do it than to tell you ...

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Patients who engage a lawyer after receiving their injury are five times less likely ever to return to work
"Even allowing for an expected correlation between the two variables -- persons with more serious injuries are presumably more likely to retain lawyers -- legal representation appears to have an independent effect in prolonging the process of recovery." (via Overlawyered)

A Canadian physician-lawyer's quest to institute a parallel private health care system
"He argues that regulations that create long waiting times for surgery contradict the constitutional guarantees for individuals of "life, liberty and the security of the person," and that the prohibition against private medical insurance and care is for sick patients an "infringement of the protection against cruel and unusual treatment."

He believes that Canada is disallowing ...

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A mistake over a decimal point caused the death of a baby who was given 10 times the recommended amount of heart medication
"The baby, who was born with a congenital heart defect, was taken to Leicester's Glenfield Hospital less than two weeks after his birth in March 2002 after experiencing breathing problems.

He died a few days later after being given the drug Digoxin, which slows the ...

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Dartmouth-Hitchcock has an official "Department of Shared Decision Making"
I believe it's the only department of its kind. Even though it sounds like an official second opinion department, I'm all for giving the patient more autonomy in their medical decisions.

However, not all are enthused: "The center has met resistance, however. Some comes from physicians wary of decreasing the number of procedures they perform. Others see it ...

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The family of a late Harvard professor is suing his doctors for missing a lung cancer
"The doctors all failed to recognize a 1-centimeter lung lesion on a chest X-ray taken of the Harvard University professor in February 2001, according to Alex MacDonald, the lawyer for Gould's survivors.

Thirteen months later, after another chest X-ray was taken, the lesion had grown to 3 centimeters and the cancer had spread ...

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I've added DrTony to the blogroll
Interesting entries and frequently updated.

Regarding their unfortunate decision to start charging for online access to AMA News.

MedGadget:
"In our opinion, the decision by the AMA is regrettable. As AMA members, we believe that this organization has a responsibility to communicate to society the issues facing patients and physicians.

It is unfortunate that the AMA never made an effort to open the science published in JAMA to the people that directly ...

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Some say the tort crisis is overblown . . .
. . . and some don't. The battle continues. (via CuriousJD)

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