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February 2012 Briefing - Internal Medicine

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Internal Medicine for February 2012. 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.

Nicotine Patches Don't Help Pregnant Women Stop Smoking

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 29 (HealthDay News) -- The addition of nicotine-replacement therapy to behavioral cessation support does not increase the rate of smoking abstinence in pregnant women, according to a study published in the March 1 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Amantadine Speeds Recovery From Consciousness Disorders

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Amantadine improves the rate of functional recovery during active treatment in patients with severe traumatic brain injury, according to a study published in the March 1 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Ruxolitinib Reduces Spleen Size in Myelofibrosis

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 29 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with myelofibrosis, treatment with a potent and selective Janus kinase 1 and 2 inhibitor, ruxolitinib, provides significant clinical benefit compared with the best available treatment or placebo, according to two studies published in the March 1 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Bisphosphonates, Annual BMD Screen Up Fracture Prevention

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 29 (HealthDay News) -- In a hypothetical model of postmenopausal women receiving adjuvant aromatase inhibitors (AIs) for hormone receptor (HR)-positive early breast cancer (EBC), baseline and annual bone mineral density (BMD) screening followed by selective treatment with oral bisphosphonates for those diagnosed with osteoporosis is a cost-effective strategy, according to a study published online Feb. 27 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Despite Benefits of Selenium, Supplements May Be Harmful

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 29 (HealthDay News) -- While selenium is necessary for good health, levels that are too high can be harmful, and people whose serum selenium levels are already at least 122 µ/L should not take supplements, according to a review published online Feb. 29 in The Lancet.

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Group Art Therapy Not Found to Be Helpful in Schizophrenia

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Group art therapy does not improve the mental health or social functioning of patients with schizophrenia, according to a study published online Feb. 28 in BMJ.

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Behavioral Intervention Slims Waistlines of Obese Men

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 29 (HealthDay News) -- A behavioral intervention to improve physical activity and diet in obese patients is more effective at slimming the waistlines of men than women, according to a study published online Feb. 27 in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Hearing Loss Linked to Falls in Those Under Age 70

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Hearing loss is associated with increased odds of falling, according to research published in the Feb. 27 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Statin Users Less Likely to Suffer From Depression

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 29 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with coronary heart disease, use of statins is associated with reduced risk of having or developing depression, according to a study published online Feb. 21 in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry.

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Neurophysiological Deficits Persist Following Concussion

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 29 (HealthDay News) -- For athletes who suffer a concussion, neurophysiological deficits persist and are present at least six months following a concussion, and adolescents appear to be more vulnerable to the consequences of concussion, according to a study published in the March issue of Brain Injury.

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Family Tree Clarifies Risk of Death Due to Arrhythmia

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 29 (HealthDay News) -- In six inherited arrhythmia syndromes, the Family Tree Mortality Ratio (FTMR) method is useful for identifying the age during which mortality risk becomes manifest in an untreated population, according to research published online Feb. 28 in Circulation: Cardiovascular Genetics.

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Inactivity and Obesity Relate to Cognitive Impairment in Lupus

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Physical inactivity and obesity are associated with impaired cognitive function, especially executive functions, in women with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), according to research published online Feb. 15 in Arthritis Care & Research.

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Care Protocol for Comatose Patients May Need Revision

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Although neurological tests are highly reliable predictors of death in patients who remain in a coma following cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), withdrawal-of-treatment decisions may need to be delayed for those who undergo mild hypothermia therapy, according to a Dutch study published in the February issue of the Annals of Neurology.

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Sleeping Pill Use Linked to Greater Mortality Risk

TUESDAY, Feb. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Even relatively small doses of sleeping pills are associated with a more than three-fold higher risk of death, according to a study published online Feb. 27 in BMJ Open.

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FDA Approves Label Changes for Statins

TUESDAY, Feb. 28 (HealthDay News) -- The recommendation to remove routine monitoring of liver enzymes is among safety label changes recently approved by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration for statins, according to a Feb. 28 Drug Safety Communication issued by the agency.

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Drug Ups Effect of Gemcitabine in Pancreatic Cancer

TUESDAY, Feb. 28 (HealthDay News) -- The efficacy of gemcitabine in treating pancreatic cancer can be greatly improved by a second drug that increases gemcitabine levels by preventing its breakdown, according to a study published online Feb. 28 in Cancer Discovery.

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BPA Exposure Possibly Linked to Future Heart Disease

TUESDAY, Feb. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Healthy people exposed to higher levels of the controversial chemical bisphenol A (BPA), found in plastics, may be more likely to develop heart disease, according to a study published online Feb. 21 in Circulation.

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Fast Heart Rate Predictive of Cardiac Events in High-Risk HTN

TUESDAY, Feb. 28 (HealthDay News) -- A fast heart rate is a strong predictor of adverse cardiac events in patients with high-risk hypertension, according to a study published in the March 1 issue of The American Journal of Cardiology.

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Adults With Disabilities at Increased Risk of Violence

TUESDAY, Feb. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Adults with disabilities face an increased risk of violence, with an even higher risk evident for those with mental illness, according to a review published online Feb. 28 in The Lancet.

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Dose-Response Link Between Tanning Bed Use, Skin Cancer

TUESDAY, Feb. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Use of tanning beds, especially in high school and college, is associated with an increased risk of skin cancer, according to a study published online Feb. 27 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Vitamin D Linked to Reduced Pain in Primary Dysmenorrhea

TUESDAY, Feb. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Treatment with cholecalciferol, which rapidly enhances 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 (25[OH]D), is associated with decreased pain and reduced nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) use for women with primary dysmenorrhea, according to a letter published in the Feb. 27 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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A-Fib Increases Risk of Cognitive, Functional Decline

TUESDAY, Feb. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with atrial fibrillation are at an increased risk for both cognitive and functional decline, regardless of whether they have a stroke, according to research published online Feb. 27 in CMAJ, the journal of the Canadian Medical Association.

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Rapid Flu Tests Effective for Ruling In (But Not Out) Diagnosis

TUESDAY, Feb. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Rapid influenza tests are useful for diagnosing influenza; and oral oseltamivir and inhaled zanamivir may be beneficial for the treatment of influenza, according to two reviews published online Feb. 27 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Less Than Half of New Diabetes Patients Achieve A1C Goals

TUESDAY, Feb. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Less than half of newly diagnosed patients with type 2 diabetes achieve A1C <7 percent, and those that do achieve it more likely started with lower A1C levels, according to a study published in the March issue of Diabetes Care.

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Poor Asthma Control Prevalent in the United States

MONDAY, Feb. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Many patients with asthma who do not use controller medications have persistent disease, and among those patients who do use controller medications, few have well-controlled disease, according to a study published in the March issue of the Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology.

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Low Back Pain Counseling Strategy Ups Return to Work

MONDAY, Feb. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Combining a disability evaluation with proactive counseling for workers with low back pain (LBP) results in a higher return-to-work rate, which is statistically significant at one year, according to a study published online Feb. 16 in Spine.

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Chemo for Breast Cancer Tied to Long-Term Cognitive Issues

MONDAY, Feb. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Women treated with cyclophosphamide, methotrexate, and fluorouracil (CMF) chemotherapy for breast cancer still experience neuropsychological problems decades later, according to a study published online Feb. 27 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Red Blood Cell Omega-3 Levels Linked to Brain Volume

MONDAY, Feb. 27 (HealthDay News) -- In adults without clinical dementia, low red blood cell (RBC) levels of omega-3 fatty acids are associated with smaller brain volumes and lower scores on tests of visual memory and executive function, according to a study published in the Feb. 28 issue of Neurology.

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Heartburn Controlled With Step Down to Once Daily Therapy

MONDAY, Feb. 27 (HealthDay News) -- The majority of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) patients who take twice-daily proton pump inhibitor (PPI) therapy, are able to successfully step down to management of heartburn with a daily dose of dexlansoprazole modified release (MR), according to a study published in the March issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

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TAK-875 Improves Glycemic Control in Type 2 Diabetes

MONDAY, Feb. 27 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with type 2 diabetes who do not respond to diet or metformin treatment, selective pharmacological activation of the free fatty acid receptor 1 (FFAR1) by TAK-875 improves glycemic control, according to a phase 2 study published online Feb. 27 in The Lancet.

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Multimodal Palliative Approach OK for Advanced Esophageal CA

MONDAY, Feb. 27 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with advanced esophageal cancer, use of an individualized, multimodal approach with palliative intention achieves an acceptable mean survival time, with initial use of photodynamic therapy (PDT) offering significantly longer median survival compared to other modalities, according to the results of a single medical center study published online Feb. 14 in Lasers in Surgery and Medicine.

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Many Obese With CKD Want to Lose Weight

MONDAY, Feb. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Many overweight patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) want to lose weight and are utilizing weight loss methods that may further kidney damage, according to a study published online Jan. 31 in the International Journal of Obesity.

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Combo of Diabetes, Depression Increases Post-MI Mortality

MONDAY, Feb. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Having both diabetes and depression significantly increases the risk of dying in the years following a heart attack, beyond the increased risk from either condition alone, according to a study published in the March issue of Diabetes Care.

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Ten-Year CML Survival Estimate of 68 Percent With Imatinib

MONDAY, Feb. 27 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with chronic myeloid leukemia that fails to respond to interferon alpha therapy, treatment with imatinib is associated with long-term survival of 68 percent, according to a study published online Feb. 27 in Cancer.

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Body Clock Linked to Sudden Cardiac Death

FRIDAY, Feb. 24 (HealthDay News) -- A body clock-dependent protein is associated with variations in electrical stability in the heart, which may explain why people are at higher risk of sudden cardiac death in the morning, according to research published online Feb. 22 in Nature.

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Older Anesthesiologists Have Higher Litigation Rates

FRIDAY, Feb. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Anesthesiologists over the age of 65 years have a higher frequency of litigation and greater severity of injury than their younger counterparts, according to an article published in the March issue of Anesthesiology.

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Variable Mortality Risk for Antipsychotic Use in Elderly

FRIDAY, Feb. 24 (HealthDay News) -- The risk of mortality associated with antipsychotic drug use among elderly residents in nursing homes in the United States varies between drugs, according to a study published online Feb. 23 in BMJ.

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Male Pattern Baldness Linked to Prostate Symptoms

FRIDAY, Feb. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Early-onset of male pattern baldness (androgenetic alopecia [AGA]) may be a marker of male urinary symptoms associated with an enlarged prostate, according to a study published in the March issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

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UVB Preferred for Treatment of Moderate to Severe Psoriasis

FRIDAY, Feb. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Ultraviolet B (UVB) is preferred by dermatologists for first-line treatment of moderate to severe psoriasis in both healthy male and female patients, according to a study published in the March issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

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Expression of Genes for Platelet Aggregation Up Post-CABG

FRIDAY, Feb. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Following coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery, there is increased expression of genes involved in platelet aggregation, including cyclooxygenase-1 (COX1), glycoprotein (GP)IIb and GPIIIa, according to a study published online Feb. 13 in the Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis.

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Bolus Calculation, Flexible Insulin Up Diabetes Control

FRIDAY, Feb. 24 (HealthDay News) -- A structured course teaching the benefits of automated bolus calculator (ABC) use and flexible intensive insulin therapy (FIIT) improves metabolic control and satisfaction in patients with type 1 diabetes, according to a study published online Feb. 16 in Diabetes Care.

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Timeliness of Diagnosis Varies by Cancer and Patient

FRIDAY, Feb. 24 (HealthDay News) -- There is wide variation between cancer types in the proportion of patients who visit their general practitioner three or more times before being referred to the hospital, according to a study published online Feb. 24 in The Lancet Oncology.

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Plasma Protein S100-B Useful Screening Tool in Head Trauma

FRIDAY, Feb. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Measuring plasma levels of the protein S100-B has a high negative predictive value compared with computed tomography (CT) scans for patients with minor head injuries, according to research published in the March issue of the Annals of Emergency Medicine.

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Complications Seen in 40 Percent of Living Liver Donors

FRIDAY, Feb. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Complications of living donor hepatic lobectomy occur in 40 percent of cases, with the vast majority resolving within one year, according to research published online Feb. 15 in the American Journal of Transplantation.

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Model Predicts Death Due to Acetaminophen Overdose

FRIDAY, Feb. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Model for Acetaminophen-induced Liver Damage (MALD), a mathematical model that utilizes commonly obtained laboratory values, including overdose amount and time elapsed since overdose, is effective for predicting outcomes in patients with acute liver failure due to acetaminophen overdose, according to research published online Feb. 13 in Hepatology.

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Citrus Fruit Linked to Lower Risk of Ischemic Stroke

THURSDAY, Feb. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Eating higher amounts of a compound (flavonoid) found in citrus fruits may lower the risk of stroke, according to a study published online Feb. 23 in Stroke.

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Virtual Colonoscopy Useful in Screening Older Adults

THURSDAY, Feb. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Computed tomography (CT) colonography is useful as a primary screening method for detecting colorectal neoplasia in adults over the age of 65 years, with sensitivity and specificity similar to that seen for younger adults, according to research published online Feb. 23 in Radiology.

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WHO Criteria May Overestimate Fatality Rate for Avian Flu

THURSDAY, Feb. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Based on cases in hospitalized patients confirmed by the World Health Organization (WHO), the current estimated overall case fatality rate for H5N1 infection in humans is greater than 50 percent, but the stringent criteria for confirmation of the infection mean the actual fatality rate may be much lower, according to a meta-analysis published online Feb. 23 in Science.

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Family History Ups Risk of Differentiated Thyroid Cancer

THURSDAY, Feb. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Family history of thyroid cancer in a first-degree relative may be associated with an increased risk of sporadic differentiated thyroid carcinoma (DTC), according to a study published in the March 1 issue of Cancer.

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Aspirin and Clopidogrel Improve Claudication Distance

THURSDAY, Feb. 23 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with stable intermittent claudication due to peripheral arterial disease, low-dose aspirin appears to work as well as clopidogrel when given in conjunction with walking rehabilitation to improve initial claudication distance (ICD) and absolute claudication distance (ACD), according to research published in the February issue of the Journal of the American Heart Association: Cardiovascular and Cerebrovascular Disease.

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Stability Predicts Treatment Success for Vitiligo

THURSDAY, Feb. 23 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with vitiligo, a depigmenting disorder characterized by loss of melanocytes from the epidermis, melanocyte transplantation is more likely to be successful in patients whose disease has been stable for longer periods, according to a study published online Feb. 13 in the British Journal of Dermatology.

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Bisphosphonate Use Linked to Reduced Colorectal Cancer Risk

THURSDAY, Feb. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Exposure to bisphosphonates (BPs) is associated with a reduction in the risk of colorectal cancer (CRC), a reduction that is significant only for risedronic acid, according to a study published in the March 1 issue of Cancer.

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Pseudo-Prospective Analyses ID Alcohol Recovery Correlates

THURSDAY, Feb. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Prospective analysis of correlates of alcohol recovery compare favorably with pseudo-prospective studies with time-dependent covariates, but differ from cross-sectional analyses, according to a study published online Feb. 6 in Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research.

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Cancer Risk Up in Bilateral Retinoblastoma Survivors

THURSDAY, Feb. 23 (HealthDay News) -- For survivors of bilateral retinoblastoma (Rb), family history is associated with an increased risk of second cancers (SCs), especially melanoma, according to a study published online Feb. 21 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Low Neuro-Psych Functioning for Long-Term Glioma Survivors

THURSDAY, Feb. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Long-term survivors of childhood high-grade glioma have intellectual functioning within low-average ranges and low neuropsychological functioning, but the majority of patients report within or above normal quality of life, according to a study published online Feb. 21 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Community Health Indicators Tied to Transplant Outcomes

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 22 (HealthDay News) -- In the community setting, health indicators are significantly associated with post-kidney-transplant mortality, according to a study published online Feb 20 in the Archives of Surgery.

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Metastatic Melanoma Responds to Vemurafenib

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 22 (HealthDay News) -- For more than 50 percent of patients with metastatic melanoma with V600 mutations in the serine-threonine protein kinase B-RAF (BRAF V600-mutant metastatic melanoma), treatment with vemurafenib is associated with clinical response, according to a phase 2 trial published in the Feb. 23 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Colonoscopic Removal of Adenomas Cuts CRC Mortality

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 22 (HealthDay News) -- Colonoscopic removal of adenomatous polyps reduces colorectal cancer mortality, and interim analysis shows that fecal immunochemical testing (FIT) yields similar results to colonoscopy; however, more polyps are identified with colonoscopy screening compared to FIT, according to two studies published in the Feb. 23 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Skin Cancer Frequency in Chronic Leg Ulcers >10 Percent

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 22 (HealthDay News) -- Chronic leg ulcers (CLUs) that don't heal after three months of appropriate treatment have an overall skin cancer frequency of 10.4 percent, according to a study published online Feb. 20 in the Archives of Dermatology.

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Elevated Homocysteine, Heart Disease Link Questioned

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 22 (HealthDay News) -- Elevated homocysteine levels are not associated with a greater risk of coronary heart disease when considering unpublished data, suggesting publication bias, according to a study available online Feb. 21 in PLoS Medicine.

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High VEGF Signaling Score Tied to Lung Cancer Prognosis

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 22 (HealthDay News) -- A high vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) signaling score correlates with good prognosis in patients with early squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) of the lung, according to a study published online Feb. 21 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Study IDs the Rationalizations of Social Smokers

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 22 (HealthDay News) -- Social smokers do not see themselves as addicted smokers and often smoke in response to group norms or because of excessive alcohol consumption, according to research published online Feb. 20 in Tobacco Control.

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Teenage Drinking Influenced by Media Exposure to Alcohol

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 22 (HealthDay News) -- Media exposure, including viewing films featuring alcohol and alcohol-related merchandise, influence both onset age of teenage alcohol consumption and binge drinking, whereas family drinking characteristics influence only onset age of alcohol consumption, according to a study published online Feb. 20 in BMJ Open.

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Highest Diabetes Death Rates Seen in Trials Selecting for CKD

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 22 (HealthDay News) -- In type 2 diabetes patients selected for randomized controlled trials (RCTs), chronic kidney disease (CKD) is associated with the highest overall risk of mortality, according to a review published online Feb. 21 in the Journal of the American Heart Association: Cardiovascular and Cerebrovascular Disease.

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Medtronic Stent Approved to Treat Coronary Artery Disease

TUESDAY, Feb. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Medtronic's Resolute Integrity Drug-Eluting Stent (DES) has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for people with coronary artery disease (CAD), the Minneapolis-based company said in a news release.

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Replacing PPSV23 With PCV13 May Prevent More Pneumonia

TUESDAY, Feb. 21 (HealthDay News) -- A model shows that replacing the current 23-valent pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPSV23) with the 13-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV13) might prevent more pneumococcal disease, while remaining economically reasonable, according to a study published in the Feb. 22 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Women With MI More Likely to Present Without Chest Pain

TUESDAY, Feb. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Women suffering a myocardial infarction (MI) are more likely than men of the same age to present without chest pain and have higher in-hospital mortality, according to a study published in the Feb. 22 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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MRSA Screening Protocol Aids in Peds Open Airway Surgery

TUESDAY, Feb. 21 (HealthDay News) -- A screening and antibiotic treatment regimen for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in children undergoing open airway surgery may be helpful for minimizing MRSA-associated postoperative infections in MRSA-colonized patients, according to a study published in the February issue of the Archives of Otolaryngology -- Head & Neck Surgery.

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Insulin Acts As Satiety Signal in Postprandial Period

TUESDAY, Feb. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Brain insulin may act as a satiety signal during the postprandial period and is associated with decreased appetite and reduced intake of highly palatable food, according to a study published online Feb. 16 in Diabetes.

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Resistance Training Improves Outcomes in Type 2 Diabetes

TUESDAY, Feb. 21 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with type 2 diabetes, aerobic training and resistance training both result in improved metabolic features, insulin sensitivity, and reduced abdominal fat, according to a study published online Feb. 16 in Diabetes Care.

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Pharmacist-Led Intervention Reduces Medical Errors

TUESDAY, Feb. 21 (HealthDay News) -- For clinics with computerized medical records, a pharmacist-led intervention significantly reduces the risk of medical errors and is likely to be cost-effective, according to a study published online Feb. 21 in The Lancet.

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Alcohol Dependence Significant Problem for U.S. Surgeons

TUESDAY, Feb. 21 (HealthDay News) -- A considerable number of U.S. surgeons have alcohol abuse and dependence, which is more likely in those who have recently reported major errors, are burned out, and are depressed, according to a study published in the February issue of the Archives of Surgery.

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External Cooling Improves Outcomes in Septic Shock

TUESDAY, Feb. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Use of external cooling to achieve fever control is safe for sedated patients in septic shock, and decreases vasopressor requirements and early mortality, according to a study published online Feb. 17 in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

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By 2007, Hep C Superseded HIV As Cause of Death in U.S.

MONDAY, Feb. 20 (HealthDay News) -- Hepatitis C virus (HCV) superseded HIV as a cause of death by 2007; and birth cohort screening is cost-effective for HCV, according to two studies published in the Feb. 21 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Substituting Fructose for Other Carbs Doesn't Up Weight Gain

MONDAY, Feb. 20 (HealthDay News) -- Evidence suggests that fructose is unlikely to cause weight gain when substituted for other carbohydrates in diets with similar numbers of calories, but does increase weight gain in hypercaloric diets, according to a review published in the Feb. 21 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Infectious Disease Burden Rising in New Zealand

MONDAY, Feb. 20 (HealthDay News) -- Hospital admissions for infectious disease have risen over the last two decades in New Zealand, with infectious disease now being the biggest contributor to hospital admissions of any cause, particularly among the native population and the socioeconomically disadvantaged, according to a study published online Feb. 20 in The Lancet.

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Classification-Based Therapy No Better for Back Pain

MONDAY, Feb. 20 (HealthDay News) -- Treatment of patients with lower back pain (LBP) using a classification-based physical therapy approach shows no statistically significant superiority to treatment with usual physical therapy care, according to a study published online Feb. 13 in Spine.

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Group-Based Lifestyle Program Beneficial in Prediabetes

MONDAY, Feb. 20 (HealthDay News) -- A group-based diabetes education and lifestyle program is associated with improvements in healthy eating, physical activity, and motivation and mood, and reduces waist circumference and weight in individuals with prediabetes, according to a study published online Feb. 14 in Diabetes Care.

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CT Myelography More Accurately Detects CSF Leakage

MONDAY, Feb. 20 (HealthDay News) -- Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) leakage may be detected more accurately in patients with spontaneous intracranial hypotension (SIH) using epidural collection on computed tomography myelography (CTM) rather than paraspinal radioisotope (RI) accumulation on radioisotope cisternography (RIC), according to a study published in the Feb. 15 issue of Spine.

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Nicotine Replacement Therapy Linked With Infantile Colic

MONDAY, Feb. 20 (HealthDay News) -- Maternal smoking or use of nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) during pregnancy is associated with increased risk of infantile colic in offspring, according to a study published online Feb. 20 in Pediatrics.

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Lipid Sensor GPR120 Linked to Obesity in Mice and Humans

MONDAY, Feb. 20 (HealthDay News) -- A protein that acts as a lipid sensor, GPR120, can lead to obesity when defective in mice and humans, according to a study published online Feb. 19 in Nature.

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High Uric Acid Level Predictive of Adverse Cardiac Events

FRIDAY, Feb. 17 (HealthDay News) -- A high serum uric acid level is an independent predictor of in-hospital and long-term adverse cardiac events in patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) undergoing primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), according to research published in the Feb. 15 issue of The American Journal of Cardiology.

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Pregnancy Complications Tied to CVD Later in Life

FRIDAY, Feb. 17 (HealthDay News) -- Pregnancy-related complications, including hypertensive disorders and diabetes, may identify women at increased risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) later in life, according to a study published online Feb. 17 in Circulation.

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MRI Alone Not Ideal in Pulmonary Embolism Diagnosis

FRIDAY, Feb. 17 (HealthDay News) -- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) should not be used as a stand-alone test to diagnose pulmonary embolism (PE), according to a study published online Feb. 9 in the Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis.

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Open-Angle Glaucoma Linked to Erectile Dysfunction

FRIDAY, Feb. 17 (HealthDay News) -- Men with erectile dysfunction (ED) are almost three times more likely to have been previously diagnosed with glaucoma, according to a study published in the February issue of Ophthalmology.

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2002 to 2008 Saw Increase in Partial Nephrectomy Use

FRIDAY, Feb. 17 (HealthDay News) -- In the United States, the use of partial nephrectomy procedures to manage renal masses in patients with renal cell carcinoma (RCC) increased significantly from 2002 to 2008, according to research published in the March issue of The Journal of Urology.

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Study Evaluates Clinical Value of Stroke Biomarkers

FRIDAY, Feb. 17 (HealthDay News) -- While 136 different stroke biomarkers have been identified, the clinical value of these biomarkers remains unclear, according to a study published online Feb. 9 in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology.

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Smoking Cessation Drug May Also Reduce Drinking

FRIDAY, Feb. 17 (HealthDay News) -- The smoking cessation drug varenicline (VAR) may also reduce alcohol consumption in social drinkers by increasing alcohol's aversive effects, according to a study published online Feb. 16 in Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research.

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Microchip-Based Drug Delivery of hPTH(1-34) Safe in Humans

THURSDAY, Feb. 16 (HealthDay News) -- An implantable microchip-based drug delivery device can safely be used to deliver human parathyroid hormone fragment (hPTH[1-34]), according to a study published online Feb. 16 in Science Translational Medicine to coincide with presentation at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, held from Feb. 16 to 20 in Vancouver, Canada.

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Chickens Harbor E. coli Found in Human UTIs

THURSDAY, Feb. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Retail purchased chicken may be the source of extraintestinal pathogenic Escherichia coli (ExPEC) that causes urinary tract infections (UTIs) in humans, according to a study published online Feb. 15 in Emerging Infectious Diseases.

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Smoking Bans Lead to Less, Not More, Smoking at Home

THURSDAY, Feb. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Smoke-free legislation leads to less smoking in smokers' homes, not more, according to research published online Feb. 13 in Tobacco Control.

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High Omega-3 Intake Slows Rate of Visual Acuity Decline

THURSDAY, Feb. 16 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with typical retinitis pigmentosa, treatment with vitamin A combined with an omega-3-rich diet slows the decline in distance and retinal visual acuities, according to a study published online Feb. 13 in the Archives of Ophthalmology.

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Nutrition Therapy Does Not Improve Cancer Mortality Rate

THURSDAY, Feb. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Nutritional intervention may improve quality of life (QOL) measures in cancer patients with malnutrition, but has no effect on survival rates, according to a study published online Feb. 15 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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TTN Mutation Detection Aids Cardiomyopathy Diagnosis

THURSDAY, Feb. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Adding sequencing approaches that detect genetic mutations in the TTN gene, which codes for the sarcomere protein titin, would enable earlier diagnosis and improved treatment for patients with dilated cardiomyopathy, according to a study published in the Feb. 16 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Thrombopoietic Cytokine Circuit Fuels Ovarian Tumor Growth

THURSDAY, Feb. 16 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with ovarian cancer and in a related mouse model, a paracrine loop involving increased hepatic thrombopoietin and tumor-derived interleukin-6 increases platelet counts and promotes tumor growth, according to a study published in the Feb. 16 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Excess Mortality for Adults With Young-Onset Diabetes Persists

THURSDAY, Feb. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Excess mortality rates persist among adults with young-onset diabetes, and are mainly due to end-stage renal disease (ESRD) and coronary artery disease (CAD), according to a study published online Jan. 11 in Diabetes Care.

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Topical Corticosteroids Impair Restoration of Skin Barrier

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Topical corticosteroids offer a more potent anti-inflammatory effect for the treatment of atopic dermatitis (AD), but they may impair the restoration of the skin barrier and can induce skin atrophy, making topical calcineurin inhibitors more suitable for long-term treatment of the disease, according to a study published in the March issue of Allergy.

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AHA: Knowledge Gap Identified for Peripheral Artery Disease

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 15 (HealthDay News) -- The American Heart Association (AHA) has updated their guidelines for the management of peripheral artery disease (PAD), specifically in women; the updated guidelines were published online Feb. 15 in Circulation.

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Inactivating Mutation in KISS1 Prevents Pubertal Progression

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 15 (HealthDay News) -- An inactivating mutation has been identified in the KISS1 gene in a consanguineous family, a mutation that results in failure of pubertal progression, according to a report published in the Feb. 16 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Semuloparin Prophylaxis Effective in Cancer Patients

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Semuloparin, a hemisynthetic, ultra-low-molecular-weight heparin, reduces the incidence of thromboembolic events in cancer patients receiving chemotherapy, with no increased risk of a major bleeding event, according to a study published in the Feb. 16 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Intramuscular Midazolam As Safe As Intravenous Lorazepam

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Intramuscular midazolam is as safe and effective as intravenous lorazepam for treatment of patients with seizures by paramedics, according to a study published in the Feb. 16 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Biomarker Linked to Arthritis Severity at Hip but Not Knee

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 15 (HealthDay News) -- A new biomarker is associated with osteoarthritis severity at the hip but not the knee, according to a study published in the Feb. 10 issue of the Journal of Biological Chemistry.

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Behavioral Therapy Safe and Effective for Hot Flashes

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Women who develop problematic hot flashes after breast cancer treatment, where hormone replacement therapy is contraindicated, see significant improvement in quality of life after receiving behavioral therapy, according to a study published online Feb. 15 in The Lancet Oncology.

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Racial Disparity at Many Steps of Renal Transplant Process

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Racial disparities exist with regard to patient access to referral and evaluation for renal transplant, waitlisting, and eventual receipt of a kidney, according to research published in the February issue of the American Journal of Transplantation.

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Hemoglobin A1c, Fasting Plasma Glucose Relationship Studied

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 15 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with moderate dysglycemia or early type 2 diabetes, hemoglobin A1c (A1C) and fasting plasma glucose (FPG) levels are strongly related, and this relationship is impacted by oral therapies but not affected by geographic region or patient ethnicity, according to research published online Feb. 8 in Diabetes Care.

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Vitamin D Doesn't Improve Cardiac Measures in CKD Patients

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with chronic kidney disease who are treated with the active vitamin D compound, paricalcitol, for 48 weeks do not show improvement in left ventricular mass or certain measures of diastolic dysfunction, compared with patients who received placebo, according to a study published in the Feb. 15 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Anti-apoA-1 Ups Cardiovascular Risk Prediction in RA

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Adding the biomarker anti-apolipoprotein A-1 IgG (anti-apoA-1) to the 10-year Framingham cardiovascular risk score (FRS) significantly improves prediction of cardiovascular events in patients with rheumatoid arthritis, according to a study published online Feb. 2 in Arthritis Care & Research.

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New Data Published on Safety of Leflunomide in Pregnancy

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 15 (HealthDay News) -- New data on birth outcomes provide some reassurance to women who are inadvertently exposed to leflunomide before or during pregnancy, according to research published online Feb. 3 in Arthritis & Rheumatism.

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Brief Cognitive Screens at Primary Care Visits Effective

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Brief cognitive screening of older patients combined with further evaluation, if needed, in the primary care setting leads to a two- to three-fold increase in the diagnosis of cognitive impairment, including dementia, according to a study published in the February issue of the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

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Procedure, Medication Both Cost-Effective in Glaucoma

TUESDAY, Feb. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Generic topical prostaglandin analogs (PGAs) and treatment with laser trabeculoplasty (LTP) are both cost-effective for treatment of newly diagnosed mild open-angle glaucoma, with PGAs providing better quality of life relative to LTP, according to a study published online Feb. 13 in the Archives of Ophthalmology.

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Air Pollutant Exposure Tied to Increased Heart Attack Risk

TUESDAY, Feb. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Short-term exposure to all major air pollutants, except for ozone, is significantly associated with an increased risk of heart attack, according to a study published in the Feb. 15 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Study Finds Antibiotic for Acute Rhinosinusitis Is Not Helpful

TUESDAY, Feb. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Treatment of acute, uncomplicated rhinosinusitis with amoxicillin does not result in a significant difference in symptoms compared with the use of placebo, according to a study published in the Feb. 15 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Lynch Syndrome Linked to Increased Risk of Many Cancers

TUESDAY, Feb. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with Lynch syndrome, an inherited disorder of cancer susceptibility caused by mutations in a mismatch repair (MMR) gene, face significantly increased risks of a variety of cancers, including breast and pancreatic cancer, according to a study published online Feb. 13 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Pollutant Exposure Tied to Cognitive Decline in Elderly

TUESDAY, Feb. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Long-term exposure to particulate matter (PM) (coarse PM: 2.5 to 10 µm in diameter [PM2.5-10] and fine PM: <2.5 µm in diameter [PM2.5]) is associated with faster cognitive decline in older women, according to a study published in the Feb. 13 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Mediterranean Diet Linked to Healthier Brain Matter

TUESDAY, Feb. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Consumption of a Mediterranean-style diet (MeDi) is linked to a reduced burden of white matter hyperintensity volume (WMHV), a marker of small vessel brain damage, according to a study published in the February issue of the Archives of Neurology.

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Urinary Tract Infections More Common in Obese

TUESDAY, Feb. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Obese individuals are more likely to be diagnosed with a urinary tract infection (UTI) or pyelonephritis compared with nonobese individuals, according to a study published in the February issue of Urology.

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Patient Satisfaction Linked to Varied Health Care Utilization

TUESDAY, Feb. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Higher patient satisfaction is associated with less emergency department use, but with greater inpatient admissions, expenditures, and higher mortality, according to a study published online Feb. 13 in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Supplements Don't Prevent Cancer in Cardiac Patients

TUESDAY, Feb. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Daily supplementation with B vitamins and/or omega-3 fatty acids is not associated with improved cancer outcomes for survivors of cardiovascular disease, according to a study published online Feb. 13 in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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New Staging System IDs cSCC Risk in Transplant Patients

TUESDAY, Feb. 14 (HealthDay News) -- The newly updated seventh edition American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) staging system accurately predicts the risk of recurrence of cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (cSCC) in high-risk heart and lung transplant recipients, according to a study published online Jan. 30 in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

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Fibromyalgia Symptoms More Severe in Obese Patients

TUESDAY, Feb. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with fibromyalgia who are severely obese have more severe symptoms and lower quality of life (QOL), according to a study published in the February issue of Arthritis Care & Research.

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Big Waistline in HIV Tied to Neurocognitive Impairment

MONDAY, Feb. 13 (HealthDay News) -- Central obesity is linked to an increased risk of decreased mental functioning in HIV-positive individuals, according to a study published in the Feb. 14 issue of Neurology.

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Lipid Genetics Linked to Type 2 Diabetes Risk

MONDAY, Feb. 13 (HealthDay News) -- Individuals who are genetically predisposed to have low levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol or high levels of triglycerides have an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes, according to a study published online Feb. 7 in Diabetes.

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Zioptan Eyedrops Approved for Glaucoma, Ocular Hypertension

MONDAY, Feb. 13 (HealthDay News) -- Merck's Zioptan drops (tafluprost ophthalmic solution) have been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to lower pressure within the eye among people with high blood pressure of the eye (ocular hypertension) or open-angle glaucoma, the most common form of the disease.

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Coronary Artery Disease Linked to Risk of Prostate Cancer

MONDAY, Feb. 13 (HealthDay News) -- A significant correlation between coronary artery disease (CAD) and prostate cancer (PCa) has been found among men participating in a prostate drug trial, according to research published online Feb. 7 in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.

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Radiation Not Tied to Improved Survival in Advanced NSCLC

MONDAY, Feb. 13 (HealthDay News) -- Postoperative radiation therapy (PORT) is not associated with improved survival for elderly patients with N2 non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC), according to a study published online Feb. 13 in Cancer.

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Mindfulness Therapy Improves Bipolar Disorder Symptoms

MONDAY, Feb. 13 (HealthDay News) -- Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) may improve mood, emotional regulation, well-being, and functioning in individuals with bipolar disorder, according to a study published in the February issue of CNS Neuroscience & Therapeutics.

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Brain Changes ID'd in Young Adults With Type 1 Diabetes

FRIDAY, Feb. 10 (HealthDay News) -- By late adolescence and early adulthood, brain volume and T2 relaxation time, a measure of tissue health, has declined in patients with type 1 diabetes compared with similarly-aged healthy peers, according to research published online Feb. 1 in Diabetes Care.

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Heavy Soda Drinking Tied to Asthma, COPD

FRIDAY, Feb. 10 (HealthDay News) -- Heavy consumption of soft drinks is linked to an increased risk of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), according to a study published in the February issue of Respirology.

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Risk of Collision Doubles for Drivers Using Cannabis

FRIDAY, Feb. 10 (HealthDay News) -- Drivers under the influence of cannabis are twice as likely to be involved in motor vehicle collisions, particularly fatal collisions, according to research published online Feb. 9 in BMJ.

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Guidelines for VTE Prophylaxis in Nonsurgical Patients Issued

THURSDAY, Feb. 9 (HealthDay News) -- New evidence-based clinical practice guidelines have been issued for the prophylaxis of venous thromboembolism (VTE) in nonsurgical patients; the guidelines have been published in a supplement to the February issue of CHEST.

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Inflammation Link With Stroke Depends on Stroke Type

THURSDAY, Feb. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Elevated leukocyte counts are associated with a higher incidence of cerebral infarction and a lower incidence of intracerebral hemorrhage, according to a study published online Feb. 3 in the Journal of Internal Medicine.

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Radiation Risks From Diagnostic Procedures Examined

THURSDAY, Feb. 9 (HealthDay News) -- National strategies should be developed for the use of evidence-based criteria and improved oversight of equipment to minimize radiation exposure for patients undergoing diagnostic procedures, according to a study published online Feb. 3 in CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians.

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Intracerebroventricular Opioid Infusion Feasible at Home

THURSDAY, Feb. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Intracerebroventricular (ICV) infusion of opioids is safe and effective for the treatment of nonresponsive pain in terminally-ill patients in home settings, according to a review published online Feb. 1 in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology.

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Acute Myeloid Leukemia Risk Factors ID'd in Texas Adults

THURSDAY, Feb. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Solvent exposure, smoking, and obesity are significant risk factors for de novo acute myeloid leukemia (AML) in Texas, according to a study published online Feb. 1 in Cancer.

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Males With ACL Injury, Females Share Lateral Knee Geometry

THURSDAY, Feb. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Female patients with and without anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury, and male patients with ACL injury, share a common lateral tibiofemoral geometry, according to a study published in the Feb. 1 issue of The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery.

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Two-Way Flow of Data Best for Electronic Records, IIS

THURSDAY, Feb. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Incentive payments to health care providers to encourage adoption of the electronic health record (EHR), instituted by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), should encourage bidirectional sharing of information between EHR systems and state or regional immunization information systems (IIS), according to research published online Feb. 7 in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

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Fasting Augments Chemo in Cancer Cells, Mouse Models

THURSDAY, Feb. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Short cycles of starvation (fasting) sensitizes mammalian cancer cells to chemotherapeutic agents, and may increase the effectiveness of chemotherapy against cancer cells and in mouse models, according to an experimental study published online Feb. 8 in Science Translational Medicine.

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About One-Third of U.S. Adults Receive Advice to Exercise

THURSDAY, Feb. 9 (HealthDay News) -- U.S. adults were more likely to receive advice to exercise or participate in physical activity in 2010 than in 2000, but such advice is currently only received by approximately one-third of all adults, according to a February data brief issued by the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS).

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Fen-Phen Derivative Likely Caused >1,000 Deaths in France

THURSDAY, Feb. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Benfluorex (Mediator), a fenfluramine-derivative drug used in France for the treatment of high cholesterol in overweight patients with diabetes, is likely to have been responsible for thousands of hospitalizations and deaths over a 30-year period, according to a study published online Feb. 9 in Pharmacoepidemiology & Drug Safety.

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Human Y Chromosome Linked to Coronary Artery Disease Risk

THURSDAY, Feb. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Human Y chromosome lineage is associated with coronary artery disease risk, according to a study published online Feb. 9 in The Lancet.

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Stimulation of Entorhinal Cortex Enhances Memory

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Focal electrical stimulation to the entorhinal cortex is associated with enhanced memory, according to a study published in the Feb. 9 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Tai Chi Training Improves Balance in Parkinson's Disease

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 8 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with mild to moderate Parkinson's disease, tai chi reduces balance impairments compared with resistance training or stretching, according to a study published in the Feb. 9 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Parkin Has Key Role in Human Nigral Dopaminergic Neurons

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Parkin may control dopamine utilization in the human midbrain by enhancing dopaminergic neurotransmission and suppressing dopamine oxidation, according to a study published online Feb. 7 in Nature Communications.

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Multicomponent Serogroup B Meningitis Shot Immunogenic

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 8 (HealthDay News) -- The multicomponent serogroup B Neisseria meningitidis (MenB) vaccine (4CMenB) is safe and immunogenic for infants when given alone or together with routine vaccinations, according to research published in the Feb. 8 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Heart Failure Tied to Increased Osteoporotic Fracture Risk

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Adults with heart failure have an increased risk of major osteoporotic fractures, independent of traditional risk factors and bone mineral density (BMD), according to a study published online Jan. 18 in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

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Neuropsychiatric Events Have No Long-Term Impact in Lupus

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Neuropsychiatric manifestations of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) are not associated with long-term disease activity, the accumulation of organ damage, or overall health-related quality of life, according to a study published online Jan. 30 in Arthritis Care & Research.

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Caffeine Reduces Fibrosis Risk in Nonalcoholic Liver Disease

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Coffee caffeine consumption (CC) substantially reduces the risk of fibrosis in patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), according to a study published in the February issue of Hepatology.

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Cefpodoxime Not Recommended for Acute, Uncomplicated Cystitis

TUESDAY, Feb. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Cefpodoxime should not be used as a first-line fluoroquinolone-sparing antimicrobial for acute uncomplicated cystitis, according to a study published in the Feb. 8 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Cognitive Impairment Criteria Impact Alzheimer's Diagnosis

TUESDAY, Feb. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Using revised criteria for mild cognitive impairment (MCI), the vast majority of patients with very mild or mild Alzheimer's disease (AD) would be reclassified as having MCI, according to a study published online Feb. 6 in the Archives of Neurology.

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Age Affects Risk of Death in Women With Breast Cancer

TUESDAY, Feb. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Among postmenopausal women with hormone receptor-positive breast cancer, increasing age is associated with a higher risk of death from breast cancer, according to a study published in the Feb. 8 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Reduced Caloric Nourishment Doesn't Reduce Ventilator Use

TUESDAY, Feb. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Providing lower amounts of nutritional support does not reduce ventilator-free days, risk of death at 60 days, or infectious complications for critically ill patients with acute lung injury compared to providing full caloric nourishment, according to a study published online Feb. 5 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Breast Cancer Prevention Drug Linked to Bone Loss

TUESDAY, Feb. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Postmenopausal women receiving the aromatase inhibitor exemestane to prevent breast cancer are more likely to have bone loss, according to a study published online Feb. 7 in The Lancet Oncology.

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Continuous Exercise in Hypoxia Beneficial in Type 2 Diabetes

TUESDAY, Feb. 7 (HealthDay News) -- For individuals with type 2 diabetes (T2D), continuous moderate-intensity exercise in hypoxia provides the greatest improvements in acute and moderate-term glucose control, according to a study published online Jan. 25 in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

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Polyethylene Glycol Repairs Severed Nerves in Rats

TUESDAY, Feb. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Polyethylene glycol (PEG) may be useful for repairing severed nerves, according to two experimental studies published online Feb. 3 in the Journal of Neuroscience Research.

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New Guidelines Recommend Metformin in Type 2 Diabetes

TUESDAY, Feb. 7 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with type 2 diabetes whose blood sugar cannot be controlled by lifestyle modifications such as diet and exercise, metformin monotherapy should be prescribed initially, according to new guidelines from the American College of Physicians (ACP) published in the Feb. 7 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Subcortical Gray Matter Changes Seen in RA Patients

TUESDAY, Feb. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Compared with healthy control subjects, patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) have reduced intracranial volumes and structural changes in the subcortical gray matter, but do not have localized cortical gray matter atrophy, according to research published in the February issue of Arthritis & Rheumatism.

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Three 'Targeted' Cancer Drugs Up Risk of Fatal Adverse Events

TUESDAY, Feb. 7 (HealthDay News) -- The use of vascular endothelial growth factor receptor (VEGFR) tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) to treat cancer is associated with an increased risk of fatal adverse events (FAEs) but there is no difference in rates of FAEs between the different VEGFR TKIs or tumor types, according to a meta-analysis published online Feb. 6 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Fructose Stimulates Insulin Via Sweet Taste Receptors

TUESDAY, Feb. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Fructose binds to sweet taste receptors (TRs) on beta cells, activating a signaling pathway that potentiates glucose-stimulated insulin secretion, according to an experimental study published online Feb. 6 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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Fluoxetine, Venlafaxine Tied to Drop in Adult Suicide Behaviors

MONDAY, Feb. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Treatment with the antidepressants fluoxetine hydrochloride and venlafaxine hydrochloride is associated with a reduction in suicidal thoughts and behavior in adult and geriatric patients and has no impact on such thoughts or behavior in youths, according to a study published online Feb. 6 in the Archives of General Psychiatry.

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Change in Fitness or Fatness Impacts Cardio Risk Factors

MONDAY, Feb. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Maintaining or improving fitness and preventing fat gain are both associated with a lower likelihood of developing cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors in healthy adults, according to a study published in the Feb. 14 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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DRAGON Score Helps Predict Functional Outcomes in Stroke

MONDAY, Feb. 6 (HealthDay News) -- A new scoring method can aid clinicians in predicting functional outcomes for patients with ischemic stroke receiving intravenous (IV) alteplase, according to a study published in the Feb. 7 issue of Neurology.

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RA Drug Trial Funding Source Not Linked to Outcome

MONDAY, Feb. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) drug therapy randomized controlled trials (RCTs) funded by industry are not more likely to result in a positive outcome, according to research published online Jan. 24 in Arthritis & Rheumatism.

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Noroviruses Are Leading Cause of Hospital Infections

MONDAY, Feb. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Norovirus outbreaks are the leading cause of infection outbreaks in hospitals, particularly in the non-acute care setting, and often lead to unit closure, according to an article published in the February issue of the American Journal of Infection Control.

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Exercise Test May Predict Post-Liver Transplant Survival

MONDAY, Feb. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Anaerobic threshold (AT), as determined by submaximal cardiopulmonary exercise testing (CPET), may have value in predicting 90-day post-transplant survival for patients undergoing liver transplantation, according to a study published in the February issue of Liver Transplantation.

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Weight Loss Impacts Leg Muscle, Strength in Knee OA

MONDAY, Feb. 6 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee, a 16-week low-energy diet program results in independent losses of leg muscle tissue and strength, and is accompanied by improvements in body mass-normalized muscle strength, according to research published in the February issue of Arthritis & Rheumatism.

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Startle Response Up in Early-Onset Alcohol Dependence

MONDAY, Feb. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Early-onset alcohol-dependent patients have increased acoustic startle responses compared with late-onset alcohol-dependent patients or healthy controls, according to a study published online Jan. 24 in Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research.

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Massage Reduces Inflammation Following Hard Exercise

MONDAY, Feb. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Massage therapy following strenuous exercise reduces inflammation and promotes the growth of new mitochondria in skeletal muscle, according to a study published in the Feb. 1 issue of Science Translational Medicine.

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Mechanism for Metabolic Effects of Resveratrol Elucidated

MONDAY, Feb. 6 (HealthDay News) -- By inhibiting phosphodiesterase (PDE) 4 in skeletal muscle, resveratrol triggers a series of intracellular events, including indirect activation of sirtuin 1 (Sirt1), according to an experimental study published in the Feb. 3 issue of Cell.

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New Assay IDs Individuals With Major Depressive Disorder

FRIDAY, Feb. 3 (HealthDay News) -- A multi-assay, serum-based test can be used to distinguish individuals with major depressive disorder (MDD) from controls, with high specificity and sensitivity, according to a study published online Dec. 13 in Molecular Psychiatry.

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Same Gene Variants in Early- and Late-Onset Alzheimer's

FRIDAY, Feb. 3 (HealthDay News) -- Rare variants of three genes linked to early-onset Alzheimer's disease can also be found in individuals with late-onset Alzheimer's disease, suggesting that mutations are not the only factor affecting age of onset, according to a study published online Feb. 1 in PloS One.

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Prostate Size Predicts Gleason Score Upgrading

FRIDAY, Feb. 3 (HealthDay News) -- For men with low-risk prostate cancer, prostate size is an independent predictor of Gleason score upgrading, according to a study published in the December issue of The Journal of Urology.

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Patients With IBD Experience More Travel-Related Illness

FRIDAY, Feb. 3 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) experience more travel-related illness when visiting industrialized, but not developing, countries than healthy individuals, according to research published in the February issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

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Sarcopenia Predictive of Mortality in Cirrhosis

FRIDAY, Feb. 3 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with cirrhosis being evaluated for liver transplantation, sarcopenia is associated with increased mortality and significantly lower median survival time, according to research published in the February issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

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High Alcohol Intake, Family History Impact Colon CA Risk

FRIDAY, Feb. 3 (HealthDay News) -- Individuals who consume 30 g alcohol or more per day have a significantly elevated risk of colon cancer, especially those with a family history of colorectal cancer, according to a study published in the February issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

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Smoking Increases Progression Risk in Barrett's Esophagus

FRIDAY, Feb. 3 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with Barrett's esophagus who currently smoke have twice the risk of developing esophageal cancer compared with never smokers, according to a study published in the February issue of Gastroenterology.

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Global Malaria Deaths Higher Than Previously Thought

FRIDAY, Feb. 3 (HealthDay News) -- Malaria kills more people each year than previously recognized -- nearly 1.2 million people worldwide -- with more than 40 percent of deaths occurring in older children and adults, according to research published in the Feb. 4 issue of The Lancet.

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Alanine Aminotransferase Levels ID Liver Disease Risk

FRIDAY, Feb. 3 (HealthDay News) -- Alanine aminotransferase (ALT) levels can be used to discriminate between individuals infected with hepatitis C virus (HCV) RNA and those at low risk for liver disease (negative HCV RNA and hepatitis B surface antigen, low alcohol consumption, no evidence of diabetes, and normal body mass index and waist circumference), according to a study published in the February issue of Hepatology.

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Ghrelin Stimulates Food Intake During Cisplatin-Based Chemo

THURSDAY, Feb. 2 (HealthDay News) -- Administration of synthetic ghrelin during chemotherapy improves food intake and appetite in patients with esophageal cancer, while minimizing gastrointestinal disorders, according to a study published online Jan. 26 in Cancer.

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Direct to Consumer Statin Web Sites of Poor Quality

THURSDAY, Feb. 2 (HealthDay News) -- Most Web sites advertising statins directly to consumers contain poor levels of information relevant to safe use of the medicine and side effects, according to a study published online Feb. 2 in Pharmacoepidemiology and Drug Safety.

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Heart Failure Linked to Loss of Cerebral Gray Matter

THURSDAY, Feb. 2 (HealthDay News) -- Heart failure is associated with loss of gray matter (GM) in the brain and worse cognitive function, according to a study published online Jan. 31 in the European Heart Journal.

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Occasional Hard Drug Use in Mid-Life Hikes Mortality Risks

THURSDAY, Feb. 2 (HealthDay News) -- The occasional use of hard drugs in middle age is linked to significantly increased risk of all-cause mortality, according to a study published online Jan. 25 in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

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Geographic Pattern of Lyme Disease Mapped in Eastern U.S.

THURSDAY, Feb. 2 (HealthDay News) -- Two Lyme disease risk foci have been identified in the Northeast and upper Midwest of the United States, according to a study published in the February issue of The American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.

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Live Liver Donation Doesn't Impact Long-Term Mortality

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 1 (HealthDay News) -- The risk of early death for live liver donors is 1.7 per 1,000 donors, and long-term mortality is similar to that of healthy individuals, according to a study published in the February issue of Gastroenterology.

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Repeat Flexible Sigmoidoscopy Increases Detection of CRC

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 1 (HealthDay News) -- Repeated screening by flexible sigmoidoscopy (FSG) increases the detection of colorectal cancer or advanced adenoma in women and men, according to a study published online Jan. 31 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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Decision Support Tools Help Optimize Acute PE Detection

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 1 (HealthDay News) -- Implementing evidence-based clinical decision support (CDS) significantly improves the efficiency of computed tomographic (CT) angiography use to detect acute pulmonary embolism (PE) for patients presenting to an emergency department, according to a study published in the February issue of Radiology.

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Insulin Secretion Impaired in the Insulin-Resistant

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 1 (HealthDay News) -- Individuals with impaired glucose tolerance or type 2 diabetes have impaired glucose-stimulated insulin secretion after exposure to insulin compared with healthy individuals, according to a study published in the February issue of Diabetes.

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Proton Pump Inhibitor Use Ups Hip Fracture Risk for Women

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 1 (HealthDay News) -- Postmenopausal women are at a 35 percent increased risk of hip fractures if they regularly use proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), and that risk increases to more than 50 percent among women with a history of smoking, according to a study published online Jan. 31 in BMJ.

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Exercise Aids Health, Well-Being of Cancer Survivors

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 1 (HealthDay News) -- Exercise is associated with improvements in physical functions and quality of life in patients who have completed cancer treatment, according to a meta-analysis published online Jan. 31 in BMJ.

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