Dec. 2005 Briefing - Dermatology

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in dermatology for December 2005. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal articles, as well as the FDA approvals and regulatory changes that are the most likely to affect clinical practice.

Psoriasis Patients More Likely to Smoke, Be Obese

FRIDAY, Dec. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Psoriasis patients are more likely to smoke cigarettes and to be obese than people without psoriasis, according to a study in the December issue of Archives of Dermatology. But while smoking may have a role in the onset of the skin condition, obesity does not, the researchers report.

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Cleft Lip Syndrome Linked To Two Novel Genetic Mutations

THURSDAY, Dec. 22 (HealthDay News) -- Two novel TP63 mutations have been identified that result in the rare ankyloblepharon, ectodermal defects, and cleft lip and palate (AEC) syndrome, according to a study published in the December issue of the Archives of Dermatology.

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Targeted UV-B Effective for Localized Psoriasis

THURSDAY, Dec. 22 (HealthDay News) -- Localized, plaque-type psoriasis responds well to treatment using targeted UV-B phototherapy, according to a study published in the December issue of the Archives of Dermatology.

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Ultraviolet Light Breaks Cell DNA in Skin Cancer Patients

TUESDAY, Dec. 20 (HealthDay News) -- Sensitivity to ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation is associated with non-melanoma skin cancers but not with malignant melanoma, according to a study in the Dec. 21 issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. The cells of sensitive patients display a higher number of chromosomal breaks after UVB exposure than controls.

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Hospital 'Handoffs' Common Source of Medical Errors

TUESDAY, Dec. 20 (HealthDay News) -- Poor communication during hospital "handoffs," when patient care transitions from one physician or team of physicians to the next, may be responsible for many of the estimated 44,000 to 98,000 deaths that occur each year in U.S. hospitals due to medical errors, according to a study published in the December issue of Academic Medicine.

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Gene Controlling Skin Color Found in Zebrafish Studies

MONDAY, Dec. 19 (HealthDay News) -- Researchers studying zebrafish have uncovered a protein that controls skin pigmentation that is conserved in most vertebrates including humans, according to a report in the Dec. 16 issue of Science. The finding sheds light on the genetics of human skin tone.

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Etanercept Improves Fatigue, Depression from Psoriasis

MONDAY, Dec. 19 (HealthDay News) -- The TNF-alpha-inhibiting drug etanercept may help relieve fatigue and depression in psoriasis patients, in addition to improving symptoms of the skin condition itself, according to a report in the Dec. 15 issue of The Lancet.

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Allergy to Vegetable Oil Components Seen in Children

THURSDAY, Dec. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Turnip and oilseed rape are common plants used in vegetable oil production and should be added to the list of potential food allergens for children with atopic dermatitis, according to a study in the January issue of Allergy.

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FDA Announces Recall of One Lot of Methotrexate

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 14 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced Tuesday the recall of one lot of injectable methotrexate because the active drug substance used to make it contained small amounts of ethylene glycol. Bedford Laboratories, a division of Ben Venue Laboratories, Inc. of Bedford, Ohio, voluntarily recalled Lot #859142.

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B. cereus Outbreak Caused Scalp Infections in Cadets

MONDAY, Dec. 12 (HealthDay News) -- Primary cutaneous disease attributed to Bacillus cereus rarely occurs in immunocompetent persons or in nonhealth-care settings, but an outbreak of the disease occurred among healthy cadets enrolled in a Georgia military program, according to a report published by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in their Dec. 9 issue of the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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Chronic Stress Hastens Induced Skin Cancer in Mice

FRIDAY, Dec. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Chronic stress accelerates the emergence and development of squamous cell carcinomas in mice, according to a study published in the Dec. 7 issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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Febuxostat More Effective Than Allopurinol for Gout

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Febuxostat is more effective than allopurinol in the treatment of gout, researchers report in the Dec. 8 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Michael A. Becker, M.D., of the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine in Illinois, and colleagues randomly assigned 762 patients with gout to receive either 300 mg of allopurinol or either 80 mg or 120 mg of febuxostat once a day for 52 weeks. All patients had serum urate concentrations of at least 8 mg per deciliter.

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Botulinum Toxin May Relieve Tennis Elbow

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Botulinum toxin injections could relieve the pain of lateral epicondylitis or "tennis elbow," according to a study published in the Dec. 6 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Diabetic Foot Wounds Respond to Two New Treatments

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Negative pressure wound therapy and once-a-day intravenous antibiotic therapy with ertapenem both show promise as new approaches in the healing of diabetic foot wounds. Two studies describing these approaches were published in the Nov. 12 issue of The Lancet.

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First Partial Face Transplant Performed in France

FRIDAY, Dec. 2 (HealthDay News) -- A 38-year-old French woman who received the world's first partial face allotransplantation will require long-term immunosuppression, rehabilitation and psychological support, according to the two French hospitals involved.

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