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July 2013 Briefing - Neurology

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Neurology for July 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.

Anemia Linked to Elevated Dementia Risk in Older Adults

WEDNESDAY, July 31 (HealthDay News) -- Anemia is associated with an increased risk of developing dementia in older adults, according to a study published online July 31 in Neurology.

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Health 'Mutual Accountability' Pilot Program Launching

WEDNESDAY, July 31 (HealthDay News) -- The State of Oklahoma Office of Management and Enterprise Services has chosen MedEncentive to conduct a three-year heath improvement program pilot among HealthChoice beneficiaries.

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Diagnosis of Bell's Palsy in ER Is Usually Accurate

WEDNESDAY, July 31 (HealthDay News) -- The incidence of incorrect diagnoses of Bell's palsy in the emergency department with subsequent alternative diagnosis is low, according to a study published online July 29 in the Annals of Emergency Medicine.

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Glucose Intolerance Not Linked to Alzheimer's Pathology

TUESDAY, July 30 (HealthDay News) -- There seems to be no significant correlation between glucose intolerance and insulin resistance with brain β-amyloid burden or Alzheimer's disease (AD) pathology, according to a study published online July 29 in JAMA Neurology.

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Reversal of Medical Practices Common Over Past Decade

TUESDAY, July 30 (HealthDay News) -- Over 100 contemporary medical practices have subsequently been reversed over the last 10 years, according to a review published online July 22 in Mayo Clinical Proceedings.

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Back Pain Management Relying on Guideline Discordant Care

TUESDAY, July 30 (HealthDay News) -- Management of back pain is increasingly relying on guideline discordant care, including narcotic use, advanced imaging, and referrals to physicians, according to research published online July 29 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Breastfeeding Duration Linked to Intelligence in Childhood

TUESDAY, July 30 (HealthDay News) -- Breastfeeding duration is associated with receptive language at age 3 and intelligence at age 7, according to a study published online July 29 in JAMA Pediatrics.

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Problematic Video Game Use Up in Boys With ASD, ADHD

MONDAY, July 29 (HealthDay News) -- Boys with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have more problematic video game use compared to boys with typical development, according to a study published online July 29 in Pediatrics.

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After Cervical Disc Surgery Pro Athletes Can Return to Sports

MONDAY, July 29 (HealthDay News) -- Professional athletes may return to full contact sports following a single-level anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF), according to research published in the July issue of Neurosurgery.

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Centrally Acting ACE Inhibitors Slow Decline in Dementia

MONDAY, July 29 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with dementia, the rate of cognitive decline is slowed for those taking centrally acting angiotensin-converting-enzyme (ACE) inhibitors (CACE-Is), especially in the first six months of treatment, according to a study published in the July issue of BMJ Open.

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For Ischemic Stroke, Fewer Women Receive Thrombolytics

FRIDAY, July 26 (HealthDay News) -- Women with acute ischemic stroke are less likely than men to arrive at the hospital within four hours and are less likely to receive thrombolytic treatment, according to research published online July 25 in Stroke.

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COPD Linked to Increased Risk of Cerebral Microbleeds

FRIDAY, July 26 (HealthDay News) -- Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is associated with an increased prevalence of cerebral microbleeds, particularly in deep or infratentorial locations, according to a study published online July 25 in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

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Prenatal Mercury Exposure, ASD Behaviors Not Linked

THURSDAY, July 25 (HealthDay News) -- Prenatal exposure to methlymercury is not associated with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) phenotypic behaviors, according to a study published online July 18 in Epidemiology.

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IOM Confirms Geographic Variation in Health Spending

THURSDAY, July 25 (HealthDay News) -- Considerable geographic variation exists in health care spending and utilization, but a geographically-based value index is unlikely to promote value improvement, according to a report published July 24 by the Institute of Medicine.

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Semagacestat Doesn't Improve Cognitive Status in Alzheimer's

WEDNESDAY, July 24 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with Alzheimer's disease, treatment with the small-molecule γ-secretase inhibitor semagacestat does not improve cognitive status and is associated with worsening of cognitive function, according to a study published in the July 25 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Continuing Statins Linked to Decreased Risk of Parkinson's

WEDNESDAY, July 24 (HealthDay News) -- Continuation of lipophilic statin therapy is associated with a decreased risk of Parkinson's disease (PD) when compared with statin discontinuation, according to a study published online July 24 in Neurology.

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Dizziness Visits Account for About 4 Percent of ER Costs

WEDNESDAY, July 24 (HealthDay News) -- Emergency department costs for patients presenting with dizziness or vertigo are considerable, accounting for about 4 percent of total costs, according to a study published in the July issue of Academic Emergency Medicine.

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Transcranial Ultrasound Seems Beneficial in Chronic Pain

WEDNESDAY, July 24 (HealthDay News) -- Transcranial ultrasound (TUS) is associated with significant improvements in subjective mood, and slight improvements in pain among patients with chronic pain, according to a study published in the May issue of Brain Stimulation.

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Docs Need to Follow Patients' Lead, Embrace Social Media

WEDNESDAY, July 24 (HealthDay News) -- As more patients discuss and manage their health care online, doctors need to keep up and use social media, according to a report published by the American Medical Association (AMA).

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High-Quality Early Intervention Key to Aiding Children With ASD

WEDNESDAY, July 24 (HealthDay News) -- High-quality early interventions may equally benefit preschoolers with autism spectrum disorder as much as any specific education treatment model, according to a study published online June 28 in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders.

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U.S. Physicians Not Supportive of Changes in Payment Models

TUESDAY, July 23 (HealthDay News) -- U.S. physicians accept some responsibility for reducing health care costs in their practice, but most do not want to change payment models, according to research published in the July 24/31 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Pros and Cons of Electronic Cigarette Regulation Discussed

TUESDAY, July 23 (HealthDay News) -- The pros and cons of electronic cigarette (EC) regulation are discussed in to two editorials published online July 23 in The Lancet Respiratory Medicine.

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Ischemic Stroke Described in Patients With Fungal Meningitis

MONDAY, July 22 (HealthDay News) -- Patients presenting with acute ischemic stroke may have fungal infections attributable to contaminated methylprednisolone associated with epidural injections, according to a case series published online July 22 in JAMA Neurology.

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Psych Comorbidity Contributes to Premature Death in Epilepsy

MONDAY, July 22 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with epilepsy, psychiatric comorbidity contributes to premature mortality from external causes, according to a study published online July 22 in The Lancet.

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Premiums Expected to Be About 20 Percent Lower in 2014

MONDAY, July 22 (HealthDay News) -- Premiums in the Health Insurance Marketplace are likely to be about 20 percent lower than anticipated in 2014, according to a report published by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

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Tablets Help Physicians Keep Up With Medical Research

MONDAY, July 22 (HealthDay News) -- Most physicians find keeping up with the latest research to be challenging, but the use of tablets and smartphones may help, according to a report published by Wolters Kluwer Health.

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Top Challenges for Docs Include Financial Management

FRIDAY, July 19 (HealthDay News) -- The top issues and challenges facing physicians include managing changing reimbursement models with payors and financial management, according to a report published by Wolters Kluwer Health.

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Missed Diagnoses, Med Errors Most Common Malpractice Claims

FRIDAY, July 19 (HealthDay News) -- The most common medical misadventures resulting in malpractice claims in primary care are missed or delayed diagnoses and medication errors, according to a review published online July 18 in BMJ Open.

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Breaking a Sweat Regularly May Lower Risk of Incident Stroke

THURSDAY, July 18 (HealthDay News) -- Physical inactivity is associated with an increased risk of incident stroke, which is mediated via traditional risk factors, according to a study published online July 18 in Stroke.

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In 2010, Racial Discrepancy in Life Expectancy 3.8 Years

THURSDAY, July 18 (HealthDay News) -- In 2010, the discrepancy in life expectancy between blacks and whites was 3.8 years, according to a July data brief published by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS).

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Financial Incentives Can Drive Health IT Adoption

WEDNESDAY, July 17 (HealthDay News) -- Financial incentives can drive providers' adoption of health information technology, including e-prescribing, according to a study published in the July issue of Health Affairs.

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FDA Approves First Medical Device to Help Diagnose ADHD

TUESDAY, July 16 (HealthDay News) -- The first medical device designed to help medical professionals diagnose attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children and teens has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

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Redesign of Medical Education Needed for Chronic Disease Era

TUESDAY, July 16 (HealthDay News) -- Medical education programs should be redesigned to address the current complex chronic disease era, with emphasis on appropriate basic sciences and clinical skills, according to a special communication published online July 15 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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CMS Medicare Physician Fee Schedule Could Benefit Docs

TUESDAY, July 16 (HealthDay News) -- The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has released the 2014 proposed Medicare physician fee schedule, which could help create a more equitable payment system by adjusting misvalued codes and proposing new complex management codes, according to a report published by American Academy of Family Physicians.

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Improvements Made to CMS Online Directory of Physicians

TUESDAY, July 16 (HealthDay News) -- The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has reworked and redesigned their online directory of physicians (Physicians Compare) after errors were discovered throughout the site.

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Stroke Incidence Up in Chinese Versus White Population

MONDAY, July 15 (HealthDay News) -- Chinese populations have slightly higher overall stroke incidence and a higher proportion of intracerebral hemorrhage, compared with white populations, according to a review published in the July 16 issue of Neurology.

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EHRs May Slow Growth in Ambulatory Health Care Costs

MONDAY, July 15 (HealthDay News) -- Adoption of electronic health records (EHRs) modestly slows growth in ambulatory health care costs, according to research published in the July 16 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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More Job Opportunities Available for Physicians

MONDAY, July 15 (HealthDay News) -- More than half of physicians are receiving up to three employment solicitations per week, according to a report published by American Medical Association (AMA).

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CMS Proposes New Rule for Outpatient Payment Policies

MONDAY, July 15 (HealthDay News) -- A new rule proposes updating Medicare payment policies and rates for the hospital outpatient prospective payment system (OPPS) and ambulatory surgical center (ASC) services, according to a report issued by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

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Physicians Frustrated by Third-Party Interference

FRIDAY, July 12 (HealthDay News) -- Third-party interference is the most commonly cited key frustration for physicians, according to the results of a survey published in Physicians Practice.

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AMA Offers Guidance for Improving EHR Effectiveness

FRIDAY, July 12 (HealthDay News) -- The American Medical Association (AMA) House of Delegates has voted for policies to help physicians navigate patient interaction while using electronic devices and to improve the interoperability of electronic health records (EHRs).

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Grants of $150 Million for Community Health Centers

THURSDAY, July 11 (HealthDay News) -- Grants totaling $150 million are to be shared by 1,100 community health centers to help enroll patients in insurance programs, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

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Health Searches May Be Leaked to Third Parties

THURSDAY, July 11 (HealthDay News) -- Free health-related websites often have third-party tracking elements and leak search terms to third-party tracking entities, unlike U.S. government or physician-oriented websites, according to a research letter published online July 8 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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U.S. Adults Value Health Care Provider Skill Evaluation

THURSDAY, July 11 (HealthDay News) -- Most adults feel that health care providers who treat them should adhere to a recertification program, including passing examinations, attending educational programs, and undergoing certification, regardless of time in practice, according to a report published by the National Board of Certification and Recertification for Nurse Anesthetists (NBCRNA) and the Citizen Advocacy Center.

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Docs Don't Often Talk to Patients About Dietary Supplements

THURSDAY, July 11 (HealthDay News) -- Although primary care physicians are discussing dietary supplements with patients during outpatient visits, these exchanges happen infrequently, according to research published in the June issue of Patient Education and Counseling.

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One in Five U.S. Adults Will Have Trouble Paying Medical Bills

THURSDAY, July 11 (HealthDay News) -- About one in five U.S. adults will have problems paying health care bills in 2013, including about 10 million adults with year-round insurance coverage, according to a report published by the American Medical Association (AMA).

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Quality Metrics Play Small Role in Physician Compensation

THURSDAY, July 11 (HealthDay News) -- Quality measures play a small but emerging role in physician compensation, according to a report published by the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA).

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Red Cross Issues Emergency Call for Blood Donors

THURSDAY, July 11 (HealthDay News) -- The American Red Cross has issued an emergency request for blood and platelet donors of all blood types, according to report posted July 9.

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Cognitive Functioning Improving for Nonagenarians

THURSDAY, July 11 (HealthDay News) -- Nonagenarians born in 1915 have significantly better cognitive functioning and improved activities of daily living scores than those born in 1905, according to a study published online July 11 in The Lancet.

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Inverse Relationship for Cancer, Alzheimer's Dementia

WEDNESDAY, July 10 (HealthDay News) -- There seems to be an inverse relationship in the incidence of cancer and Alzheimer's disease (AD) dementia, with a reduced risk of cancer for those with AD dementia, and vice versa, according to a study published online July 10 in Neurology.

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Improvement Needed in Drug Post-Marketing Studies

WEDNESDAY, July 10 (HealthDay News) -- Since the requirement in 2007 that drug makers conduct post-marketing studies, the number of studies not yet started has declined while the number of studies fulfilling obligations has nearly doubled, according to a report published in the July 10 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association. However, more than 40 percent of studies had not yet been started in 2011, and the number of studies with delays doubled as of 2011.

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Improvements Noted in U.S. Health From 1990 to 2010

WEDNESDAY, July 10 (HealthDay News) -- From 1990 to 2010, considerable progress has been made in improving health in the United States, according to a report published online July 10 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Tablets More Useful Than Smartphones for Docs Using EHRs

WEDNESDAY, July 10 (HealthDay News) -- Although tablets are less often used by physicians than smartphones, they are more frequently used for accessing electronic health records (EHRs), and time spent on tablets is much higher, according to two reports published by AmericanEHR Partners.

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Health Insurance Marketplaces Not Required to Verify Claims

WEDNESDAY, July 10 (HealthDay News) -- Health insurance marketplaces will not be required to verify consumers' income and health insurance status and can rely on self-reported information, the Obama administration announced Friday.

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Digital Divide Plagues Underserved Areas

TUESDAY, July 9 (HealthDay News) -- Electronic health record (EHR) adoption is uneven, with traditionally underserved areas having lower adoption rates across the United States, according to a study published online June 26 in Health Services Research.

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Adoption of Electronic Health Records Is Progressing

TUESDAY, July 9 (HealthDay News) -- In 2012, 44 percent of hospitals reported having at least a basic electronic health record (EHR), according to an annual report published by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

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Practices Are Not Ready for Implementation of ICD-10

MONDAY, July 8 (HealthDay News) -- Most practices are not ready for implementation of the International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision (ICD-10), according to a report published by the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA).

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Early Predictors of Disability After Spine Trauma Identified

MONDAY, July 8 (HealthDay News) -- The presence of hypotension, hyperglycemia, and moderate or severe traumatic brain injury early after spine trauma are independent predictors of functional disability at one year, according to a review published in the May 20 issue of Spine.

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Cognitive Activity Throughout Lifetime Slows Later Decline

WEDNESDAY, July 3 (HealthDay News) -- Cognitive activity in early- and late-life correlates with slower late-life cognitive decline, irrespective of common neuropathologic conditions, according to a study published online July 3 in Neurology.

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More Than 40 Percent of Docs Report Work Dissatisfaction

WEDNESDAY, July 3 (HealthDay News) -- Many physicians are dissatisfied and are unlikely to recommend the medical profession to young people, according to a report published by Jackson Healthcare.

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Obama Administration: ACA's Employer Mandate Delayed

WEDNESDAY, July 3 (HealthDay News) -- The Obama Administration is postponing a major Affordable Care Act (ACA) provision, the employer mandate, according to an announcement made Tuesday via the U.S. Department of the Treasury website.

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Hypertension, Lipid Control Improved, 1988 to 2010

TUESDAY, July 2 (HealthDay News) -- Concomitant hypertension and hypercholesterolemia control have improved from 1988-1994 to 2005-2010, according to research published in the July 2 issue of Circulation.

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Docs Impact Comparative Effectiveness Research Opinion

TUESDAY, July 2 (HealthDay News) -- Doctors' support of comparative effectiveness research (CER) influences public opinion and has a greater impact on public opinion than cues from political players, according to research to be published this fall in the Journal of Health Politics, Policy and Law.

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Prehospital Triage Policy for Suspected Stroke Ups tPA Use

MONDAY, July 1 (HealthDay News) -- Implementation of a prehospital triage policy for patients with suspected stroke is associated with increased use of intravenous (IV) tissue plasminogen activator (tPA), according to a study published online July 1 in JAMA Neurology.

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Impaired Adult Outcomes With Early Chronic Iron Deficiency

MONDAY, July 1 (HealthDay News) -- Chronic iron deficiency in infancy has a negative effect on adulthood function, according to a study published online June 28 in The Journal of Pediatrics.

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Diabetic Retinopathy Severity Inversely Tied to Cognition

MONDAY, July 1 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with type 2 diabetes, the severity of diabetic retinopathy (DR) is inversely linked to cognitive impairment, according to a study published online April 30 in Diabetes Care.

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