June 2014 Briefing - Radiology

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Radiology for June 2014. 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.

New Plan Would Permit Doctors to Treat Patients in Other States

MONDAY, June 30, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A proposal to make it much easier for doctors licensed in one state to treat patients in other states in person, online, or by videoconference has been prepared by the Federation of State Medical Boards, which includes the agencies that license and discipline doctors.

Health Highlights: June 30, 2014

Combination Imaging Ups Differentiation of Breast Tumors

MONDAY, June 30, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Use of multiparametric 18fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography magnetic resonance imaging (MP 18FDG PET-MRI) using dynamic contrast-enhanced MRI (DCE-MRI), diffusion-weighted imaging, three-dimensional proton MR spectroscopic imaging, and 18FDG-PET can improve differentiation of benign and malignant breast tumors, according to a study published online June 24 in Clinical Cancer Research.

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Court: Patients Responsible for Outcomes of Risky Behavior

FRIDAY, June 27, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The Colorado Supreme Court has ruled that patients can be at least partially responsible for their health outcomes resulting from their own unhealthy behavior, according to the American Medical Association (AMA), which supported the physicians in the case.

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Abbreviated Protocol Feasible in Breast Cancer MRI Screening

FRIDAY, June 27, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- An abbreviated protocol (AP) can accurately establish the absence of breast cancer and has diagnostic accuracy similar to that of a full diagnostic protocol (FDP) in breast magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) screening, according to a study published online June 23 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Wikipedia Drug Entries Often Not Up-to-Date

THURSDAY, June 26, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Patients frequently turn to digital media for drug information; however, many Wikipedia entries about medications aren't up-to-date and accurate, according to a perspective piece published in the June 26 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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MERS-Related Abnormality Distribution ID'd on CT

WEDNESDAY, June 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Airspace opacities are commonly seen in CT images of patients hospitalized with Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection, according to a clinical perspective published online June 18 in the American Journal of Roentgenology.

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Tomosynthesis Added to Digital Mammography Cuts Recalls

WEDNESDAY, June 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Compared with digital mammography alone, the combination of digital mammography and tomosynthesis increases cancer detection and reduces false-positive results, according to research published in the June 25 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Medicaid Backlog May Have Financial Ramifications

TUESDAY, June 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- There is a considerable backlog in Medicaid enrollment applications, which may have financial ramifications on physicians and practices, according to an article published online June 10 in Medical Economics.

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Brain Iron Levels May Indicate Response to ADHD Treatment

MONDAY, June 23, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Imaging measures of brain iron levels may be an indicator of response to treatment in attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), according to a study published online June 17 in Radiology.

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Strategies Presented to Avoid Overzealous Lung CA Screening

TUESDAY, June 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The benefits and harms of low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) screening for lung cancer should be carefully considered before Medicare decides on its coverage policy, according to an editorial published online June 24 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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USPSTF Recommends One-Time AAA Screening for Male Smokers

TUESDAY, June 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) has concluded that a one-time abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) screening should be offered to asymptomatic men, aged 65 to 75 years, who have ever smoked, while screening for non-smoking men should be selective. These findings are presented in a final recommendation statement published online June 24 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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CMS Launches Initiative to Assist Newly Insured

MONDAY, June 23, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A national initiative has been launched to help answer questions that people may have about their new health coverage and to offer health providers the tools needed to promote patient engagement, according to a press release from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).

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Effect of Screening Program on Breast Cancer Mortality Analyzed

MONDAY, June 23, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Invitation to screening with modern mammography is associated with a 28 percent reduction in deaths from breast cancer, according to research published June 17 in BMJ.

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Variation in Use of Imaging Tests in Newly Diagnosed Heart Failure

MONDAY, June 23, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Cardiovascular testing in patients with newly diagnosed heart failure (HF) varies among U.S. hospitals, according to research published online June 18 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology: Cardiovascular Imaging.

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Complex Electronic Record Safety Issues Surface Long After Launch

MONDAY, June 23, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Electronic health record-related safety concerns involving both unsafe technology and unsafe use of technology persist long after "go-live," according to a study published online June 20 in the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association.

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Guidance Offered for Protection When Firing Employees

FRIDAY, June 20, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Steps can be taken to protect employers in the case of termination of an employee, according to an article published online June 10 in Medical Economics.

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Pre-Load Stress Echo Benefits Heart Failure Prediction

FRIDAY, June 20, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Pre-load stress echocardiography using leg-positive pressure (LPP) provides additional prognostic information beyond that provided by conventional Doppler echocardiography at rest in cases of mild heart failure, according to a study published online June 18 in JACC: Cardiovascular Imaging.

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NCHS: Insurance Coverage Expands, Gaps Remain

THURSDAY, June 19, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Two new U.S. government reports provide a statistical snapshot of health and health insurance coverage in 2013, before new coverage options took effect under the Affordable Care Act.

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ACA May Mean Healthier Young Adults, Study Suggests

WEDNESDAY, June 18, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A popular provision of the Affordable Care Act that allows young adults to stay on a parent's health insurance plan up to age 26 may be good for their health and financial security, a new study suggests. The study was published as a research letter in the June 18 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Annual MRI, Mammo Effective for Screening High-Risk Women

TUESDAY, June 17, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Initial results indicate that annual magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and digital mammography can form an effective screening program for women at high risk of breast cancer, according to research published online June 16 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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U.S. Health Care System Ranked Last Again: Report

MONDAY, June 16, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The United States' health system once again comes in last when compared to 10 other rich nations, according to the latest Commonwealth Fund report on the issue.

Health Highlights: June 16, 2014
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Clinicians Often Fail to Empathize After Adverse Event

MONDAY, June 16, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The health care industry is recognizing the benefits of prompt and transparent physician communication with patients and families about bad outcomes, according to an article published June 10 in Medical Economics.

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Physician Leadership, Ownership Dominates ACOs

MONDAY, June 16, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians are playing strong leadership and ownership roles in accountable care organizations (ACOs), according to research published in the June issue of Health Affairs.

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Surgeon's Radiation Exposure Higher With 'Freehand' Technique

MONDAY, June 16, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- During pedicle screw placement with the freehand technique, radiation exposure for the surgeon is nearly 10 times higher than with the use of navigation, according to a study published in the June 1 issue of Spine.

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Basal Ganglia Network Connectivity May ID Parkinson's

FRIDAY, June 13, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Resting-state assessment of the connectivity of the basal ganglia network (BGN) may be a useful biomarker for early Parkinson's disease (PD), according to a study published online June 11 in Neurology.

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HHS Inspector General Finds Big Problem With Medicare Coding

FRIDAY, June 13, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Nearly 42 percent of Medicare claims for evaluation and management (E/M) services are incorrectly coded, according to an article published June 2 in Medical Economics.

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Researchers Hesitant to Use Social Media to Show Findings

FRIDAY, June 13, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Researchers remain uncertain about the use of social media to communicate their findings to policy makers, according to research published online June 6 in Health Affairs.

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Data From EHRs Should Be Used to Improve Patient Care

THURSDAY, June 12, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The data from electronic health records (EHRs) should be utilized to improve the quality of patient care, according to an article published online June 10 in Medical Economics.

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Decrease in Late-Stage Breast Cancer in Mammography Era

THURSDAY, June 12, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- There appears to have been a decrease in late-stage breast cancer in the mammography era, according to a study published online May 19 in Cancer.

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Cancer Risk From Imaging Low in Children With Heart Disease

WEDNESDAY, June 11, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The lifetime risk of cancer attributed to radiation exposure in children with heart disease is low, according to research published online June 9 in Circulation.

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Millions Will Not Have to Pay ACA Tax Penalties: Report

TUESDAY, June 10, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Although an estimated 30 million people will still be uninsured in 2016, only four million are expected to pay penalties, according to the latest report from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO).

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Incentives May Lead to Greater Support for Practice Goals

MONDAY, June 9, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Incentives may aid employees in meeting practice goals, according to an article published May 23 in Medical Economics.

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Needle Biopsy Underused in Patients With Breast Cancer

MONDAY, June 9, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Needle biopsy appears to be underused in patients with breast cancer, according to a study published online June 9 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Veterans Affected by Scandal May Seek Private Care

FRIDAY, June 6, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The recent scandal at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) may lead to more veteran visits to private physicians and community health centers, according to an article published June 2 in Medical Economics.

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Physician Political Contributions Are Increasing, Shifting

FRIDAY, June 6, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The political alignment of physicians in the United States has shifted from predominantly Republican to predominantly Democrat, based in part on the larger number of women physicians and smaller percentage of physicians practicing solo or in small practices, according to research published online June 2 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Many 'Inconsistencies' in ACA Sign-Ups: Report

THURSDAY, June 5, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A new government document finds that more than a quarter of the eight million people who signed up for coverage under the Obama Administration's new health care law have "inconsistencies" in the data they supplied.

Health Highlights: June 5, 2014

Medicare Panel Says No to CT-Based Lung Cancer Screen

WEDNESDAY, June 4, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The Medicare Evidence Development and Coverage Advisory Committee (MEDCAC) recently recommended against screening of high-risk, older adults for lung cancer using low-dose computed tomography (CT), according to a news release from the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP).

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Claim Denials Expected to Increase

WEDNESDAY, June 4, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Even with good office procedures, most practices are plagued by claim denials, a hassle that is expected to increase in the coming years, according to an article published May 8 in Medical Economics.

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Most Physicians Would Forgo Aggressive Treatment

WEDNESDAY, June 4, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Although physicians regularly recommend high-intensity, aggressive, life-prolonging care for their terminally ill patients, the vast majority would choose to forgo such care for themselves at the end of life, according to a study published online May 28 in PLOS ONE.

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Number of Cancer Survivors Projected to Grow in the U.S.

WEDNESDAY, June 4, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Factors such as the aging and growth of the population accompanied by improvements in early detection and treatment are expected to contribute to the growth of the number of cancer survivors in the United States, according to research published online June 1 in CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians.

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EHRs Can Be Used to Boost Practice Revenue

TUESDAY, June 3, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Practices can achieve return on investment (ROI) for implementation of electronic health record (EHR) systems if they participate in alternative delivery models, according to an article published May 8 in Medical Economics.

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