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September 2009 Briefing - Ophthalmology

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

Bacterial Infections Are a Factor in Many H1N1 Deaths

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 30 (HealthDay News) -- Many patients who have died of H1N1 influenza this year had a bacterial co-infection that likely contributed to their deaths, according to a Sept. 29 early release of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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H1N1 Virus's Genetic Makeup Appears to Be Staying Stable

MONDAY, Sept. 28 (HealthDay News) -- The genetic makeup of the H1N1 flu has remained stable, which means the yet-to-be-released vaccine is likely to be a good match for the virus, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced at a Sept. 25 media briefing.

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Childhood Nephrotic Syndrome Can Cause Lifelong Ills

FRIDAY, Sept. 25 (HealthDay News) -- Children with minimal-change nephrotic syndrome are at increased risk for osteoporosis, hypertension, sperm abnormalities and cataracts if the condition persists beyond puberty, according to a study published online Sept. 24 in the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

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Review Advises Hand Washing, Other Antiviral Measures

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Hand washing, wearing a mask, and isolating potential cases are all effective in interrupting the spread of viral respiratory infections and should be given greater attention when planning for widespread outbreaks, according to research published Sept. 22 in BMJ.

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Spotlight on Social Networking Use Among Medical Students

TUESDAY, Sept. 22 (HealthDay News) -- A majority of medical schools report instances of medical students posting unprofessional content on social networking Web sites, including some instances of violations of patient confidentiality, according to a report in the Sept. 23/30 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Drug May Improve Outcomes for CNS Lymphomas

MONDAY, Sept. 21 (HealthDay News) -- The addition of high-dose cytarabine to standard methotrexate treatment of primary central nervous system lymphomas greatly improves remission rates, according to a study published early online Sept. 20 in The Lancet to coincide with the European Cancer Organisation meeting in Berlin.

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Drug May Be Effective for Optical Autoimmune Disease

THURSDAY, Sept. 17 (HealthDay News) -- Mycophenolate mofetil may be a safe and effective treatment for neuromyelitis optica (NMO) spectrum disorders, according to a study in the September issue of the Archives of Neurology. A related study in the same issue concludes that an immunofluorescence (IF) assay is much more sensitive than an immunoprecipitation (IP) assay in diagnosing the disease.

Abstract - Jacob
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Abstract - McKeon
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Taxes on Sugared Sodas Could Cut Consumption

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Imposing a tax on sugar-sweetened beverages could reduce consumption and generate income for obesity reduction and healthy eating education interventions, according to an article published online Sept. 16 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Studies Investigate Hemifield Damage, Race in Glaucoma

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Individuals with glaucoma may have faster disease progression if they have initial damage to both hemifields, and people of African ancestry with and without glaucoma showed significant ocular differences compared to their counterparts of European descent, according to the results of two studies in the September Archives of Ophthalmology.

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Triamcinolone Studied for Vision Loss in Macular Edema

TUESDAY, Sept. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Intravitreal triamcinolone may improve visual acuity in patients with vision loss associated with macular edema due to perfused central retinal vein occlusion (CRVO), but doesn't appear to improve visual acuity better than standard care in patients with macular edema secondary to branch retinal vein occlusion (BRVO), according to research published in the September Archives of Ophthalmology.

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Universal Insurance Could Improve Primary Care Access

TUESDAY, Sept. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Although universal health insurance is associated with equity in terms of access to primary care regardless of educational level, more highly educated people still have better access to specialist care, according to a study published in the September/October issue of the Annals of Family Medicine.

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Drug Interaction E-Alerts Show Benefit to Patient Safety

MONDAY, Sept. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Drug interaction alerts from electronic prescribing likely improve patient safety and reduce costs in outpatient care, despite the fact that over 90 percent of the alerts are overridden by physicians, according to a study in the Sept. 14 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine.

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Corneal Transplant Method Appears Safe and Effective

TUESDAY, Sept. 8 (HealthDay News) -- A form of corneal transplantation to treat eye conditions characterized by corneal endothelial dysfunction is safe and effective, according to a review in the September issue of Ophthalmology.

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Antibiotic Class Linked to Double Vision

TUESDAY, Sept. 8 (HealthDay News) -- The use of fluoroquinolone antibiotics is associated with double vision, according to a study in the September issue of Ophthalmology.

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Academic Medical Centers Active and Diverse in Research

TUESDAY, Sept. 1 (HealthDay News) -- Research at academic medical centers is active and diverse, with nearly a quarter of life-science researchers receiving no funding, and relationships with industry more commonly seen among translational and clinical researchers than basic science researchers, according to a study in the Sept. 2 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Antibiotics Can Reduce Death Rates in Ethiopian Children

TUESDAY, Sept. 1 (HealthDay News) -- Mass antibiotic treatment reduces death rates in Ethiopian children in trachoma-endemic areas, according to a study in the Sept. 2 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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