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February 2009 Briefing - Ophthalmology

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Ophthalmology for February 2009. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal articles, as well as the FDA approvals and regulatory changes that are the most likely to affect clinical practice.

Calcium, Other Nutrients May Reduce Disease Risk

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 25 (HealthDay News) -- Several nutrients were associated with possible protection from cancer and age-related macular degeneration (AMD), according to two studies published in the Feb. 23 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

Abstract - Park
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Abstract - Christen
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Insurance Essential for Good Health, Well-Being

TUESDAY, Feb. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Having health insurance is vital for health and well-being, and when rates of uninsurance are high, even insured people are more likely to struggle to obtain necessary care, according to a new report from the Institute of Medicine released online Feb. 24.

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US Health Spending May Have Hit $2.4 Trillion in 2008

TUESDAY, Feb. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Health spending in the United States was estimated to be $2.4 trillion last year, and is expected to account for an unprecedented share of the economy this year, according to a report published online Feb. 24 in Health Affairs.

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Proposed Changes to Health Care Would Reduce Costs

THURSDAY, Feb. 19 (HealthDay News) -- Simultaneous gains in universal health coverage, improved health outcomes and slowed spending growth would have a major impact on the development of public policy, according to a perspective published in the Feb. 26 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Transparency, Globalization Growing in Clinical Research

THURSDAY, Feb. 19 (HealthDay News) -- All clinical trial data and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration database should be publicly available, and global clinical research should be conducted in relevant populations for potential applications of the intervention, according to two articles published in the Feb. 19 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Abstract - Wood
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Abstract - Glickman
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Ocular Damage Common in Severe Skin Reactions

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 18 (HealthDay News) -- It is common for patients with the rare skin reactions toxic epidermal necrolysis (TEN) or Stevens-Johnson syndrome (SJS) to also experience involvement of the eyes, according to the results of a study published in the February issue of the Archives of Dermatology.

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Implementing a Quality Improvement Faculty Path

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 18 (HealthDay News) -- A new career pathway in academic medicine, termed clinicians in quality improvement, is a justified concept to achieve and recognize excellence in patient safety, according to a commentary published in the Feb. 18 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Ads Featuring 'Drug Facts Box' Help Educate Consumers

TUESDAY, Feb. 17 (HealthDay News) -- Replacing the brief summary in direct-to-consumer ads with a "drug facts box" may result in improved consumer knowledge and judgment about medication benefits and side effects, according to study findings released online Feb. 17 in advance of publication in the Apr. 21 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Better Visual Field Sight with Vigabatrin During Infancy

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 11 (HealthDay News) -- Administration of the anti-epileptic drug vigabatrin during infancy compared with later ages may reduce the risk of vigabatrin-attributed visual field loss, according to research published in the February issue of Epilepsia.

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Care Coordination Programs Don't Benefit Medicare Patients

TUESDAY, Feb. 10 (HealthDay News) -- For Medicare beneficiaries with chronic illnesses, most care coordination programs have little impact on reducing hospitalizations and costs or improving quality of care, according to a report published in the Feb. 11 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Topical Cyclosporine Beneficial in Dry Eye Syndrome

TUESDAY, Feb. 10 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with moderate to severe dry eye syndrome who don't respond to conventional lubricant therapy, treatment with topical cyclosporine emulsion improves quality of life and is cost-effective, researchers report in the February issue of the Archives of Ophthalmology.

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Anecortave Acetate Reduces Ocular Hypertension

TUESDAY, Feb. 10 (HealthDay News) -- In eyes with uncontrolled steroid-related ocular hypertension, treatment with anecortave acetate results in a safe and rapid reduction of hypertension that persists for up to six months or more, according to the results of a small study published in the February issue of the Archives of Ophthalmology.

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Trichloramine at Ohio Waterpark Sickened 665 People

MONDAY, Feb. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Exposure to airborne trichloramine caused eye and respiratory irritations in 665 people who were patrons and lifeguards of an indoor waterpark resort in Ohio, according to a report published in the Feb. 6 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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Eye Region Gives Hints for Age, Level of Fatigue

TUESDAY, Feb. 3 (HealthDay News) -- Individuals use the eye region to make age and fatigue judgments about another person, suggesting that eyes are disproportionately important for providing facial cues, according to research published in the February issue of Ophthalmology.

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Physician's Briefing
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