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April 2013 Briefing - Infectious Disease

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Infectious Disease for April 2013. 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.

Renewed Efforts From AAFP to Repeal OTC Provision in ACA

TUESDAY, April 30 (HealthDay News) -- Members of the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) and other medical associations are urging further consideration of Section 9003 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) that requires holders of tax-preferred health care accounts to obtain a physician's prescription to use funds from those accounts to pay for over-the-counter (OTC) medications. The concerns have been laid out in a letter to the chair and the ranking member of the House Committee on Ways and Means.

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Virological Failure Up With Nevirapine in HIV-Infected Youth

TUESDAY, April 30 (HealthDay News) -- For children with HIV infection in Botswana, treatment with nevirapine is associated with increased rates of virological failure compared with efavirenz, according to a study published in the May 1 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, a theme issue on child health.

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Non-Inferior Response With Two-Dose HPV Vaccine

TUESDAY, April 30 (HealthDay News) -- For girls receiving two versus three doses of human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine, antibody responses to HPV-16 and HPV-18 are non-inferior one month after the last dose, according to a study published in the May 1 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, a theme issue on child health.

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No Evidence of Lyme Disease in Children With Autism

TUESDAY, April 30 (HealthDay News) -- A small study of 120 children appears to show that children with autism have no serological evidence of Lyme disease, according to a research letter published in the May 1 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, a theme issue on child health.

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USPSTF Recommends Universal HIV Screening From Age 15 to 65

MONDAY, April 29 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommends screening all 15- to 65-year olds, younger and older at-risk individuals, and all pregnant women for HIV, according to a Recommendation Statement published in the April 30 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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FDA Announces New Network to Focus Exclusively on Patients

MONDAY, April 29 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has announced the launch of a new interactive tool for educating patients, their advocates, and consumers about the processes involved in medication development.

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Medical Interns Spending Less Time With Patients

FRIDAY, April 26 (HealthDay News) -- Medical interns are spending less time with patients and more time at a computer since new rules limiting total work hours were instituted in 2011, according to a study published online April 18 in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

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Saturday Marks Sixth Annual Rx Drug Take-Back Day

FRIDAY, April 26 (HealthDay News) -- United States residents across the nation will have an opportunity to safely and anonymously unload expired, unwanted prescription medications on Saturday, April 27, during the sixth annual National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day.

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Device Detects Blood Fungal Infections Rapidly

THURSDAY, April 25 (HealthDay News) -- A small, portable device can detect Candida bloodstream infection, an often fatal fungal bloodstream infection, rapidly and accurately, according to a study published in the April 24 issue of Science Translational Medicine.

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Avian to Human Transmission of H7N9 Flu Virus Identified

THURSDAY, April 25 (HealthDay News) -- The influenza A H7N9 virus has been transmitted from birds (specifically, chicken) and sickened humans, according to a study published online April 25 in The Lancet.

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Most With Confirmed H7N9 Avian Flu Are Critically Ill

THURSDAY, April 25 (HealthDay News) -- Most Chinese patients with confirmed avian influenza A (H7N9) are critically ill and 21 percent have died, according to a preliminary report published online April 24 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Physicians Less Empathetic in Talking to Heavy Patients

THURSDAY, April 25 (HealthDay News) -- Primary care physicians (PCPs) are less likely to bond with overweight and obese patients, according to research published online March 20 in Obesity.

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Natural Ventilation Effective in 'Nightingale' Wards

THURSDAY, April 25 (HealthDay News) -- For large environments with multiple openings, natural ventilation is effective, and can be supplemented with extract fans in cold weather, according to a study published in the July issue of Building and Environment.

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Fumarate Linked to Progressive Multifocal Encephalopathy

WEDNESDAY, April 24 (HealthDay News) -- Fumaric acid or fumarate-induced lymphopenia may contribute to the development of progressive multifocal encephalopathy (PML), according to two letters published in the April 25 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Diagnostic Errors Are the Leading Type of Malpractice Claim

WEDNESDAY, April 24 (HealthDay News) -- In the past 25 years, diagnostic errors have been the leading type of malpractice claim and account for the highest proportion of total payments, according to a study published online April 22 in BMJ Quality & Safety.

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Impact of Childhood Bacterial Meningitis Lasts Into Adulthood

WEDNESDAY, April 24 (HealthDay News) -- Bacterial meningitis in childhood has lasting effects, often leading to lower educational attainment and economic self-sufficiency in adulthood, according to a study published in the April 24 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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>40 Percent of Parents Give Cough Meds to Young Children

TUESDAY, April 23 (HealthDay News) -- More than 40 percent of parents with children younger than 4 years of age give them cough medicine or multi-symptom cough and cold medicine, despite warning labels that products should not be used for young children, according to a report published by the C.S. Mott Children's Hospital.

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Sofosbuvir Shows Promise for Chronic Hepatitis C Infection

TUESDAY, April 23 (HealthDay News) -- Sofosbuvir seems to be a promising treatment option for patients with chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection, according to two studies published online April 23 in the New England Journal of Medicine to coincide with presentation at The International Liver Congress, the annual meeting of the European Association for the Study of the Liver, held from April 24 to 28 in Amsterdam.

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Pediatric HIV Antiretroviral Treatment Cardioprotective

TUESDAY, April 23 (HealthDay News) -- HIV-infected children treated with highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) have better cardiac function than untreated children, according to a study published online April 22 in JAMA Pediatrics.

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Drop in Genital Warts in Young Women Since HPV Vaccination

TUESDAY, April 23 (HealthDay News) -- For Australian women aged 30 years or younger there has been a decrease in the proportion found to have genital warts following the introduction of the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine program, according to research published online April 18 in BMJ.

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HPV Exposure in Family, School Linked to Wart Development

MONDAY, April 22 (HealthDay News) -- For schoolchildren, exposure to human papillomavirus (HPV)-causing warts in the family and school class is associated with an increased risk of wart development, according to a study published online April 22 in Pediatrics.

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CDC: About 20,000 Cases of Foodborne Infection in 2012

FRIDAY, April 19 (HealthDay News) -- There were about 20,000 cases of foodborne infection in 2012, with the highest incidence among young children and the greatest proportion of hospitalizations and deaths among the elderly, according to research published in the April 19 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity & Mortality Weekly Report.

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Patient-Centered Decision Making Ups Health Outcomes

FRIDAY, April 19 (HealthDay News) -- Patient-centered decision making (PCDM) is associated with improved health care outcomes, according to a study published in the April 16 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Outcomes Vary for Diverticular Disease After Surgery

THURSDAY, April 18 (HealthDay News) -- After elective colectomy, patients with diverticular disease (DD) have worse outcomes and higher costs than patients with colon cancer (CC) but better outcomes and lower costs than patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), according to a study published in the April issue of JAMA Surgery.

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Relative Proportion of MRSA Increasing in S. aureus Isolates

THURSDAY, April 18 (HealthDay News) -- The relative proportion of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is increasing in S. aureus isolates, and methicillin-sensitive S. aureus (MSSA) is becoming increasingly resistant to antibiotics, according to a study published in the April issue of JAMA Dermatology.

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Guidelines Issued Relating to Online Medical Professionalism

THURSDAY, April 18 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians should be aware of the benefits on online media and should recognize the implications for patient confidentiality and public perception, according to a position paper published in the April 16 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Family-Centered Teaching Rounds Good for Patients, Students

THURSDAY, April 18 (HealthDay News) -- Teaching and conducting rounds in the presence of patients and their families can be beneficial for patients and learners, according to research published online April 15 in Pediatrics.

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Community Benefit Spending Varies for Tax-Exempt Hospitals

WEDNESDAY, April 17 (HealthDay News) -- There is considerable variation in the level of community benefit expenditure by tax-exempt hospitals, according to a study published in the April 18 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Glutamine, Antioxidants No Benefit to Critically Ill Patients

WEDNESDAY, April 17 (HealthDay News) -- For critically ill patients with multiorgan failure, early supplementation with glutamine or antioxidants does not improve clinical outcomes, according to a study published in the April 18 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Presenting Fee Data to Docs Cuts Number of Tests Ordered

WEDNESDAY, April 17 (HealthDay News) -- Presenting fee data to providers at the time of laboratory test orders is associated with a small reduction in the number of tests ordered, according to a study published online April 15 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Ohio Girl's Death Shows Need for Catch-Up Vaccinations

THURSDAY, April 11 (HealthDay News) -- A case of varicella death of an unvaccinated, previously healthy adolescent in Ohio was reported in the April 12 Morbidity and Mortality and Weekly Report.

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Speech Details Practices to Improve U.S. Health Systems

THURSDAY, April 11 (HealthDay News) -- There are specific steps health care providers and policymakers should take to create high-quality, patient-centered care at lower costs, according to remarks made in an April 9 speech to the National Press Club.

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Variation Seen in U.S. Antibiotic Prescription Rates

WEDNESDAY, April 10 (HealthDay News) -- U.S. outpatient antibiotic prescribing in 2010 varied with patient age, geographically, and according to provider specialty, according to a letter published in the April 11 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Metagenomics Tags Pathogens During Disease Outbreak

TUESDAY, April 9 (HealthDay News) -- A three-phase metagenomic analysis, involving the direct sequencing of DNA extracted from microbiologically complex samples, can identify the bacterial pathogens involved in disease outbreaks, according to a study published April 10 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Combo Treatment Effective for Cryptococcal Meningitis

THURSDAY, April 4 (HealthDay News) -- In HIV-infected patients with cryptococcal meningitis, treatment with amphotericin B plus flucytosine is more effective for improving survival than treatment with amphotericin B alone, according to a study published in the April 4 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Mortality Predictors in CV Implantable Device Infection ID'd

THURSDAY, April 4 (HealthDay News) -- Infective endocarditis related to a cardiovascular implantable electronic device (CIED), corticosteroid therapy, and other comorbidities are tied to reduced short- and long-term survival, according to a study published in The American Journal of Cardiology.

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HIV Self-Testing Strategies Highly Acceptable

WEDNESDAY, April 3 (HealthDay News) -- Self-testing for HIV, either supervised or unsupervised, is highly accepted and preferred over facility-based testing, according to a review published online April 2 in PLoS Medicine.

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Use of S. Aureus Vaccine Is Ineffective Before Surgery

WEDNESDAY, April 3 (HealthDay News) -- A vaccine against Staphylococcus aureus is ineffective in preventing post-operative S. aureus infection and has serious safety problems when given pre-operatively to patients undergoing cardiothoracic surgery, according to a study published online April 2 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Tonsillectomy Benefits Adults With Recurrent Pharyngitis

WEDNESDAY, April 3 (HealthDay News) --Adult patients with recurrent pharyngitis who underwent tonsillectomy had fewer symptoms of pharyngitis, thus reducing the number of medical visits and missed days from work or school, according to research published online April 2 in CMAJ, the journal of the Canadian Medical Association.

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Incidence of Valley Fever Is Increasing in Endemic Areas

MONDAY, April 1 (HealthDay News) -- The incidence of coccidioidomycosis, or valley fever, which is endemic to the southwestern United States, has dramatically increased since the late 1990s, particularly among the elderly, according to a study in the March 29 issue of Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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Varicella Vaccine Is Effective, Lasting Over 14-Year Period

MONDAY, April 1 (HealthDay News) -- Varicella vaccination is effective for preventing varicella, with effectiveness lasting over a 14-year period, according to a study published online April 1 in Pediatrics.

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Most Partners of U.S. Docs Satisfied in Their Relationships

MONDAY, April 1 (HealthDay News) -- Most spouses/partners of U.S. physicians report being satisfied with their relationships, with satisfaction linked to time spent together each day, according to research published in the March issue of the Mayo Clinic Proceedings.

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Physician's Briefing