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American Academy of Otolaryngology, Sept. 21-24

The 118th Annual American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery Foundation (AAO-HNSF) Meeting and Otolaryngology (OTO) Expo

The annual meeting of the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery was held from Sept. 21 to 24 in Orlando, Fla., and attracted more than 8,000 participants from around the world, including otolaryngologists, medical experts, allied health professionals, and administrators. Presentations focused on the latest advances in the diagnosis and treatment of disorders of the ears, nose, throat, and related structures of the head and neck.

In one study, Anya J. Miller, M.D., of the Henry Ford Health System in Detroit, and colleagues evaluated the correlation between sleep disturbances and pain in the postoperative in-hospital setting.

"We found that patients woke twice as much in the postoperative in-hospital setting as compared to normal individuals not in the in-hospital setting. Sleep efficiency was lower by approximately 20 percent, so it took patients longer to fall asleep, especially after being woken in the middle of night," said Miller. "Other results suggest that higher pain scores were associated with less sleep time and less sleep was associated with increased pain scores. In addition, lower efficiency scores were associated with longer in-hospital stays."


In another study, Sally D. Stasio, M.D., of the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Washington, D.C., and colleagues evaluated whether parents self-categorized as risk averse or risk intolerant would choose traditional tonsillectomy or tonsillotomy for their children.

"We found that parents preferred traditional tonsillectomy as opposed to tonsillotomy. Despite greater upfront risks associated with traditional tonsillectomy, including more postoperative pain, the long-term risks regarding tonsil regrowth associated with tonsillotomy remain unclear and parents were not open to taking the risk of having their child undergo another procedure if tonsils regrew overtime," said Stasio. "We hope that practitioners will openly educate parents about all the options available to them, so the parents can then make a thoughtful decision regarding the risks they are taking for their child."


David Goldenberg, M.D., of the Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, and colleagues evaluated public awareness of human papillomavirus (HPV) as a cause of oropharyngeal cancer among 477 individuals randomly selected at various shopping malls and from the Maxwell Air Force Base in 2012.

The investigators found that 82 percent of military officer trainees knew of oropharyngeal cancer, but 53 percent of civilians had not heard of oropharyngeal cancer. While 94 percent of military officer trainers and 75 percent of civilians were aware of the connection between HPV and cervical cancer, 49 percent of military officer trainers and 75 percent of civilian population had no knowledge of the association between HPV and oropharyngeal cancer.

According to Goldenberg, more education is needed to highlight the association between HPV and oropharyngeal cancer. While physicians have done a good job increasing awareness of the risk of cervical cancer tied to HPV, more needs to be done to educate the public regarding the risk of oropharyngeal cancer and HPV.


Benjamin S. Oberman, M.D., also of the Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, and colleagues evaluated the link between obesity and type 2 diabetes and the development of differentiated thyroid cancer. The investigators found that obesity, and to a slightly lesser degree diabetes, are significantly associated with differentiated thyroid cancer. In addition, body mass index was a strong predictor of differentiated thyroid cancer.


Kyle J. Stansifer, M.D., of the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha, and colleagues evaluated the impact of tobacco use, secondhand smoke exposure, alcohol consumption, and body mass index (BMI) on the development of thyroid cancer. The investigators evaluated 469 cancer patients and 425 healthy controls.

"Our data suggest that secondhand smoke exposure is a risk factor for developing thyroid cancer and mild alcohol consumption is associated with reduced risk of developing thyroid cancer," the authors write. "BMI over 30 kg/m² may be associated with thyroid cancer development for individuals over 45 years old."


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