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November 2007 Briefing - Gastroenterology

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Gastroenterology for November 2007. 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.

Some Hospital Patients May Ingest Alcohol Hand Rubs

FRIDAY, Nov. 30 (HealthDay News) -- Alcohol hand rubs in hospitals are potentially hazardous to young, confused, elderly or alcohol-dependent patients who may be likely to unintentionally or intentionally ingest them, according to a case report published in the Dec. 1 issue of BMJ.

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Reduced Emergency Admissions Linked to Cancer Screening

THURSDAY, Nov. 29 (HealthDay News) -- A pilot fecal occult blood test screening program for detecting colorectal cancer is associated with a decline in emergency colorectal cancer workload and a reduced incidence of 30-day mortality, according to study findings published online Nov. 29 in Gut.

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New Drug Raises Platelet Counts in ITP and Cirrhosis

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Eltrombopag, an oral thrombopoietin-receptor agonist that stimulates platelet production, may be useful in raising low platelet counts associated with idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP) and hepatitis C virus (HCV)-related cirrhosis, according to two articles published in the Nov. 29 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Abstract - Bussel
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Abstract - McHutchinson
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Editorial

FDA Approves Nexavar for Inoperable Liver Cancer

TUESDAY, Nov. 20 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced this week that it has approved the drug Nexavar (sorafenib) for use in patients with inoperable hepatocellular carcinoma. Nexavar was previously approved in 2005 for use in patients with advanced renal cell carcinoma.

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Model for End-Stage Liver Disease Reduces Mortality

TUESDAY, Nov. 20 (HealthDay News) -- Among patients with end-stage liver disease waiting for transplantation, implementation of the Model for End-stage Liver Disease (MELD) reduced waiting list mortality and time to transplantation, according to study findings published in the November issue of the Archives of Surgery.

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Drug Improves Survival for Some Colorectal Cancers

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 14 (HealthDay News) -- The antibody cetuximab improves overall and progression-free survival and improves quality of life better than supportive care alone in a subpopulation of patients with colorectal cancer who have failed other treatments, according to the results of a study published in the Nov. 15 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Smoking Linked to Higher Colorectal Cancer Risk

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Seeking to investigate the relationship between cigarette smoking and colorectal cancer -- for which current evidence is inconsistent -- researchers found that active smokers have an increased risk of rectal cancer. The research is published in the Nov. 21 issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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More Lymph Node Counts May Not Improve Survival Rates

TUESDAY, Nov. 13 (HealthDay News) -- Hospitals in which 12 or more lymph nodes are examined after surgeries for colon cancer do not have significantly better patient survival rates than hospitals where fewer nodes are examined, researchers report in the Nov. 14 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Infant Regurgitation Usually Not Due to Reflux Disease

MONDAY, Nov. 12 (HealthDay News) -- Most infants with persistent regurgitation do not have gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and do not need anti-reflux medications, researchers report in the November issue of Pediatrics.

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Parent's Cancer Survival May Predict Child's Cancer Survival

MONDAY, Nov. 5 (HealthDay News) -- When a parent and a child both contract lung, colorectal, breast or prostate cancer, the post-diagnosis survival of the parent may predict the post-diagnosis survival of the child, researchers report in the November issue of The Lancet Oncology.

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