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March 2009 Briefing - Radiology

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

Safe Practice Scores Do Not Add Up to Fewer Patient Deaths

TUESDAY, March 31 (HealthDay News) -- In hospitals, higher self-reported scores for improvements in safe practices do not correlate with reduced mortality rates, researchers report in the April 1 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Cost Barriers Slow Adoption of Electronic Health Records

WEDNESDAY, March 25 (HealthDay News) -- Citing cost barriers, relatively few U.S. hospitals have adopted electronic health records, posing a major obstacle for policy makers who say health information technology is critical to the improvement of health care quality and cost-effectiveness, according to an article published online March 25 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Whole-Body Scans at Trauma Centers Save Lives

TUESDAY, March 24 (HealthDay News) -- Whole-body computed tomography (CT) should be incorporated into the standard diagnostic process during early resuscitation for patients with blunt trauma injury, according to the results of a study published online March 24 in The Lancet.

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Metastases in Breast Cancer Patients Should Be Tested

MONDAY, March 23 (HealthDay News) -- Treatment for breast cancer patients with metastatic disease is often changed when tests reveal discordance between the receptor status of primary and metastatic tumors, according to an article published online March 18 in the Annals of Oncology.

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Study Finds Imaging Exams of Pregnant Women on the Rise

WEDNESDAY, March 18 (HealthDay News) -- Imaging examinations of pregnant women at one Rhode Island medical center increased dramatically over a recent 10-year period, in particular the use of computed tomographic (CT) examinations, according to a report released online March 17 in advance of publication in the May issue of Radiology.

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DCMR Stress Testing Predicts Cardiac Events in Women

FRIDAY, Mar. 13 (HealthDay News) -- Similar to results in men, cardiac abnormalities induced in women after dobutamine cardiac magnetic resonance (DCMR) stress testing are associated with a higher risk of heart attack and cardiac death, according to a study in the March issue of Journal of the American College of Cardiology: Cardiovascular Imaging.

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Specialist Nurses Help Grieving Parents Agree to Autopsy

FRIDAY, Mar. 13 (HealthDay News) -- Bereaved parents are more likely to consent to a request for post-mortem imaging for research purposes if they are approached by a specially trained nurse with experience in family and bereavement counseling, according to a study published online Mar. 12 in the Archives of Disease in Childhood.

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Brain Tumor Combination Treatment Improves Survival

MONDAY, Mar. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Combined postoperative treatment of glioblastoma patients with radiation and temozolomide improves five-year survival over radiation alone, though most patients still eventually die of the disease, according to an article published online Mar. 9 in The Lancet Oncology.

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Comprehensive Screenings in Healthy Can Find Cancers

FRIDAY, Mar. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Whole-body cancer screenings using a battery of modalities, including positron emission tomography (PET), have the ability to detect a range of early-stage cancers, according to research published online Mar. 2 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Radiation Reduces Rectal Cancer Recurrence

FRIDAY, Mar. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Preoperative radiation is more effective than postoperative radiation in reducing local recurrence in patients with rectal cancer, researchers report in the Mar. 7 issue of The Lancet.

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Measures Assess Cancer Care Based on Patient Concerns

FRIDAY, Mar. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Three measures used to assess the quality of medical care at the time of cancer diagnosis and treatment are reliable and valid, and reflect the concerns of patients about a lack of communication about their diagnosis and treatment as well as their treatment experience, according to a report published online Mar. 2 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Transdermal Patches Pose Burn Risk During Scans

FRIDAY, Mar. 6 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has issued a warning about the risk of burns as a result of wearing medicated patches, such as those used for smoking cessation or pain relief, during MRI scans.

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Unnecessary Laparotomies Prevented in Pregnant Women

THURSDAY, Mar. 5 (HealthDay News) -- MRI can help to prevent unnecessary laparotomies in pregnant patients with suspected acute appendicitis, according to research published in the March issue of Radiology.

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Obama Wants to Spend $630 Billion on Health Care Reform

THURSDAY, Mar. 5 (HealthDay News) -- Achieving health care reform is one of President Barack Obama's major challenges, and his newly released spending plan calls on Congress to commit $630 billion over the next decade to finance that reform, according to an article published online Mar. 4 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Cerebral Blood Flow Changes Indicative of Dementia

WEDNESDAY, Mar. 4 (HealthDay News) -- Continuous arterial spin-labeling (CASL) MRI is a non-invasive technique that can reveal changes in cerebral blood flow within specific brain regions, which may help to identify progression to Alzheimer's disease, according to research published in the March issue of Radiology.

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US Motor Vehicle-Related Death Rates Vary Geographically

MONDAY, Mar. 2 (HealthDay News) -- Although the mortality rate related to motor vehicles remained almost unchanged from 1999 to 2005 in the United States, on closer inspection the data reveals wide variations from state to state, as well as by gender and ethnicity, according to a report published in the Feb. 27 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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CT Perfusion May Predict Hemorrhagic Transformation

MONDAY, Mar. 2 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with acute ischemic stroke, admission perfusion-derived permeability-surface area product (PS) measurement may differentiate those who are and are not likely to develop hemorrhagic transformation, according to the results of a pilot study published in the March issue of Radiology.

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Nonionic IV Contrast Material Safe for Children

MONDAY, Mar. 2 (HealthDay News) -- In the pediatric population, the administration of nonionic intravenous contrast material (ioversol) is safe and only rarely is associated with adverse reactions, according to research published in the March issue of Radiology.

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