January 2009 Briefing - Emergency Medicine

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Emergency Medicine for January 2009. 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.

US Outpatient Surgeries Increasingly Common

FRIDAY, Jan. 30 (HealthDay News) -- Outpatient surgery visits are rising in the United States, with the number increasing from 20.8 million in 1996 to 34.7 million in 2006. They now account for nearly two-thirds of all surgery visits compared to about half of all surgery visits in 1996, according to a report issued Jan. 28 by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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In-Flight Medical Emergencies Poorly Documented

FRIDAY, Jan. 30 (HealthDay News) -- Despite the fact that the airline industry is nationally and internationally regulated, there is no standardized documentation of in-flight medical emergencies, according to a report published Jan. 20 in the open access journal Critical Care.

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FX06 Cuts Percutaneous Coronary Intervention Injury

THURSDAY, Jan. 29 (HealthDay News) -- In patients undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention to treat acute ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), using intravenous FX06, a fibrin-derived naturally occurring peptide, significantly reduces the necrotic core zone, but does not change scar size or troponin I levels, according to study findings published online Jan. 28 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Bisphenol A Levels Do Not Decrease with Fasting

THURSDAY, Jan. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Bisphenol A, an industrial chemical used in the manufacture of polycarbonate plastics, epoxy resins and polyvinyl chloride plastic, may accumulate in body tissue or be ingested via substantial non-food sources, according to study findings published online Jan. 28 in Environmental Health Perspectives.

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Clopidogrel/Proton Pump Inhibitor Combo Questioned

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Heart attack patients who take both clopidogrel and a proton pump inhibitor other than pantoprazole have an increased risk of reinfarction and may lose the beneficial effects of clopidogrel, according to research published online Jan. 28 in CMAJ, the Canadian Medical Association Journal.

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Early Blood Transfusion Increases Respiratory Risk

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Early transfusion of packed red blood cells, particularly in large amounts, increases the risk of developing acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) in trauma patients, researchers report in the February issue of Anesthesiology.

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Faster Response Linked to Improved Cardiac Survival

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 28 (HealthDay News) -- During a recent period, improvements in the "chain of survival" were linked to increased survival following out-of-hospital cardiac arrests in a region of Japan, according to research published online Jan. 26 in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

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BNP Levels Not a Superior Guide for Heart Failure Therapy

TUESDAY, Jan. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Using N-terminal brain natriuretic peptide (BNP) levels to guide heart failure therapy does not improve overall clinical outcomes or patient quality of life compared to using symptoms to guide treatment, according to a report published in the Jan. 28 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Good Survival Post-Cardiac Arrest After Angiography

TUESDAY, Jan. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Patients who are resuscitated after a heart attack have good survival and neurological recovery after undergoing emergent angiography and revascularization, particularly if they are alert post-resuscitation, according to a report in the Feb. 3 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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AHA Supports Omega-6 for Possible Heart Protection

TUESDAY, Jan. 27 (HealthDay News) -- The American Heart Association recommends that at least 5 to 10 percent of individuals' calories should come from omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids, according to a science advisory published online Jan. 26 in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

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Clinical Information Technology Leads to Safer Hospitals

TUESDAY, Jan. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Hospitals that make use of clinical information technology to automate notes, records, order entry and clinical decision support have lower mortality rates, fewer complications and also save money, according to a report published in the Jan. 26 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Prolonged Use of Loop Diuretics May Raise Fracture Risk

MONDAY, Jan. 26 (HealthDay News) -- Postmenopausal women who use loop diuretics are at increased risk of fractures, according to a report published in the Jan. 26 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Meditation Practice Linked to Less Pain Sensitivity

MONDAY, Jan. 26 (HealthDay News) -- Experience in Zen meditation is associated with reduced pain sensitivity, a finding supporting the value of mindfulness-based meditation, according to research published in the January issue of Psychosomatic Medicine.

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AHA Reveals Top 10 Heart Disease Research Advances

MONDAY, Jan. 26 (HealthDay News) -- The American Heart Association (AHA) has released its annual top 10 list of advances in research into heart disease and stroke, with a study on the impact of smoke-free legislation on hospitalizations for acute coronary syndrome topping the list.

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CDC Reports Increase of Hib Infections in Minnesota

MONDAY, Jan. 26 (HealthDay News) -- Five children in Minnesota have become ill with Haemophilus influenzae serotype b (Hib) in the past year, and one of them died, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Jan. 23.

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Salmonella Outbreaks Highlight Risk from Live Poultry

FRIDAY, Jan. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Exposure to live poultry caused two separate outbreaks of Salmonella in the United States in 2007, according to a report published in the Jan. 23 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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Mortality Not Down in Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome

FRIDAY, Jan. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Despite some assertions to the contrary, mortality from acute respiratory distress syndrome has not significantly decreased since publication of a consensus definition in 1994, according to a report published in the February issue of the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

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New Guidelines Issued for Brain Hemorrhage Management

FRIDAY, Jan. 23 (HealthDay News) -- New recommendations summarize the best available evidence for treatment of patients with aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage and identify areas of future research, according to a statement published online Jan. 22 in Stroke.

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Baby with Seizures Had Rickets and Anemia

THURSDAY, Jan. 22 (HealthDay News) -- A 9-month-old baby who presented with seizures and a bulging fontanelle was diagnosed as having rickets due to vitamin D deficiency, iron deficiency anemia and severe protein-calorie malnutrition, according to a case report published in the Jan. 22 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Peanut Butter Crackers, Dog Snacks Among Recalled Items

THURSDAY, Jan. 22 (HealthDay News) -- The list of recalled products resulting from the recent Salmonella typhimurium outbreak has grown, and officials believe a processing plant in Blakely, Ga., may be the source of the outbreak, according to officials speaking at a teleconference conducted Jan. 21 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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Life-Support Allocation Policy Needed for Public Emergencies

TUESDAY, Jan. 20 (HealthDay News) -- Current recommendations concerning who should receive scarce life support during a public health emergency such as an influenza pandemic are in need of refinement, according to research published in the Jan. 20 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Facial Injury Patterns Indicate Types of Violence

MONDAY, Jan. 19 (HealthDay News) -- A particular pattern of facial injury in women, including periorbital injuries and intracranial injuries, is indicative of intimate partner violence, allowing medical professionals to more easily identify victims of abuse, according to a study published in the January/February issue of the Archives of Facial Plastic Surgery.

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Child Restraints Help Protect Youngsters in Major Wrecks

FRIDAY, Jan. 16 (HealthDay News) -- The use of child safety seats dramatically reduces the risk of death in young children during traffic collisions, according to research published in the February issue of the American Journal of Public Health.

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Intimate Partner Violence Linked to Mental Health

FRIDAY, Jan. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Urban adult males involved in intimate partner violence are more likely to disclose adverse health behaviors such as substance abuse and show evidence of poor mental health, according to a report published in the January/February issue of the Annals of Family Medicine.

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Gender Disparity Seen in Emergency Service Time

THURSDAY, Jan. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Women with cardiac symptoms are 50 percent more likely than men to be delayed during emergency medical services (EMS) intervention, according to a report published online Jan. 13 in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

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Presumed Consent Can't Fully Explain Rise in Organ Donation

THURSDAY, Jan. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Although presumed consent may play an important role in an increased rate of organ donation, other factors may also have an impact, according to research published online Jan. 14 in BMJ.

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Congestion Therapy's Link to Respiratory Distress Studied

TUESDAY, Jan. 13 (HealthDay News) -- In ferrets, exposure to Vicks VapoRub was associated with effects that might explain the respiratory symptoms seen in some young children given the product intranasally, according to research published in the January issue of Chest.

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Model Demonstrates Ability to Predict Aneurysm Rupture

THURSDAY, Jan. 8 (HealthDay News) -- A model of aneurysm rupture derived from measuring hundreds of aneurysms showed good accuracy in identifying the rupture status of another cohort of patients, according to research published in the January issue of the Journal of Neurosurgery.

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Lancet Lambastes U.N.'s Inability to Protect Innocents

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 7 (HealthDay News) -- The current conflict between Israel and Hamas in Gaza highlights the United Nations' continuing failure to protect innocent civilians in war-torn regions, according to an editorial published online Jan. 7 in The Lancet.

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Cardiocerebral Resuscitation May Improve Survival

TUESDAY, Jan. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Cardiocerebral resuscitation (CCR) -- an alternative approach to cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) for patients with cardiac arrest -- emphasizes chest compressions over mouth-to-mouth ventilation for bystanders and new protocols for emergency responders, according to an article in the Jan. 13 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Depression Linked to Higher Heart Costs in Women

TUESDAY, Jan. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Depression, as defined via several different methods, was associated with higher cardiovascular costs over five years in women with suspected myocardial ischemia, according to research published in the Jan. 13 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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