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October 2006 Briefing - Rheumatology

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Rheumatology for October 2006. 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.

Non-Invasive Therapy Studied for Rheumatoid Arthritis

MONDAY, Oct. 30 (HealthDay News) -- A mouse study has shown that transdermal photodynamic therapy may be a promising method for minimally invasive synovectomy in rheumatoid arthritis, according to a report in the October issue of Lasers in Surgery and Medicine.

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Platelet-Rich Plasma Improves Pain of Tennis Elbow

FRIDAY, Oct. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with chronic elbow tendinosis that is unresponsive to non-surgical treatments may benefit from treatment with platelet-rich plasma, which can improve pain considerably, researchers report in the November issue of the American Journal of Sports Medicine.

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Rituximab Helps with Refractory Pemphigus Vulgaris

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 25 (HealthDay News) -- Intravenous immune globulin combined with 10 infusions of rituximab during a five-month period can quickly and safely induce remission among patients with refractory pemphigus vulgaris, according to a study published in the Oct. 26 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Anxiety Disorders Associated with Physical Conditions

MONDAY, Oct. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Anxiety disorders are linked with many serious physical conditions, a co-morbidity that increases the risk of disability and a poor quality of life, according to the results of a study published in the Oct. 23 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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New Drug Promising for Immune Thrombocytopenia

THURSDAY, Oct. 19 (HealthDay News) -- The thrombopoiesis-stimulating agent, AMG 531, appears to be safe and effective for boosting platelet counts in patients with immune thrombocytopenic purpura, according to a preliminary study in the Oct. 19 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Aggrecanase 1 May Play Key Role in Lyme Arthritis

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 18 (HealthDay News) -- New research sheds light on how infection with Borrelia burgdorferi results in Lyme arthritis, and may help pave the way toward more effective cartilage-saving treatments. The report appears in the October issue of Arthritis & Rheumatism.

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Fracture Risk Increased in Rheumatoid Arthritis

TUESDAY, Oct. 17 (HealthDay News) -- Rheumatoid arthritis patients have an increased risk of osteoporotic fractures due to a combination of disease activity, low body mass index and use of oral glucocorticoids, according to study findings published in the October issue of Arthritis & Rheumatism.

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Giant Cell Arteritis Interventions Studied

MONDAY, Oct. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with giant cell arteritis may benefit from antiplatelet or pulse corticosteroid therapies, according to two studies in the October issue of Arthritis & Rheumatism.

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Telomere Study Hints at Causes of Osteoarthritis, Ageing

FRIDAY, Oct. 13 (HealthDay News) -- There could be shared mechanisms between osteoarthritis and aging, according to a study of telomere length in leukocytes. The findings, which suggest that oxidative stress and chronic inflammation may play a role in both conditions, were published online Oct. 12 in the Annals of Rheumatic Diseases.

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U.S. Survey Shows Arthritis Rates Continue to Soar

FRIDAY, Oct. 13 (HealthDay News) -- Physician-diagnosed arthritis affects 46.4 million people in the United States and 8.3 percent of them are severely limited by their disease, according to new statistics from the 2003-2005 National Health Interview Survey. The findings are reported in the Oct. 13 issue of the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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Self-Management of Arthritis Does Not Reduce Pain

FRIDAY, Oct. 13 (HealthDay News) -- Self-management programs for arthritis patients improve their perceived handling of their condition but have no impact on pain, physical functioning or the amount of time they spend visiting the doctor, according to study findings published online Oct. 13 in BMJ.

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U.S. Leprosy Case Linked to Exposure to Armadillos

TUESDAY, Oct. 10 (HealthDay News) -- A 57-year-old woman living in the state of Georgia developed borderline tuberculoid leprosy (Hansen's disease) due to exposure to armadillos, which burrowed in a garden where she worked, according to a report published in the October issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. The woman had not traveled outside the United States, and had not been in any contact with known cases of leprosy.

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Review Confirms Thrombosis Risk in Childhood Leukemia

THURSDAY, Oct. 5 (HealthDay News) -- The risk of thrombosis in children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is significant and can be affected by various factors including treatment regimen, according to a meta-analysis of 17 prospective studies published in the Oct. 1 issue of Blood.

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Exercise Before Joint Replacement Benefits Patients

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 4 (HealthDay News) -- In patients scheduled to undergo hip or knee replacement, a six-week pre-surgical exercise program can significantly reduce the odds of discharge to an inpatient rehabilitation facility, according to study findings released online in advance of publication in the Oct. 15 issue of Arthritis Care & Research.

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Exercise Study Shows Mixed Results in Knee Osteoarthritis

TUESDAY, Oct. 3 (HealthDay News) -- Strength training may slow the progress of knee osteoarthritis but it doesn't increase isokinetic quadriceps strength, according to a report published in the October issue of Arthritis Care & Research.

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Patient's Attitude Predicts Time to Joint Arthroplasty

MONDAY, Oct. 2 (HealthDay News) -- A patient's willingness to consider total joint arthroplasty for treatment of osteoarthritis is the strongest predictor of the time to first procedure, according to a report in the October issue of Arthritis & Rheumatism.

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Physician's Briefing