February 2007 Briefing - Surgery

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Surgery for February 2007. 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.

Antiplatelet Antibodies Linked to Vancomycin

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Patients treated with vancomycin can develop antiplatelet antibodies that can cause thrombocytopenia and severe bleeding, according to study findings published in the March 1 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Laser Treatment for Acne Cuts Sebum Production

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 28 (HealthDay News) -- The 1,450-nm diode laser reduces production of sebum in patients with acne vulgaris, according to a report published in the February issue of Lasers in Surgery and Medicine.

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VEGF-Expressing Scaffold May Improve Flap Survival

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Scaffolds that contain vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)-expressing cells, which are implanted during the creation of a distal pedicle flap, may improve flap survival after reconstructive surgery, according to the results of a study of rabbits published in the March issue of the Journal of Plastic, Reconstructive & Aesthetic Surgery.

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Electrothermolysis Appears to Control Facial Seborrhea

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Electrothermolysis of hyperactive sebaceous glands reduces facial seborrhea symptoms, according to the results of a study of 12 Japanese women published in the February issue of Dermatologic Surgery.

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Baxter Healthcare Infusion Pump Back on the Market

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 28 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the modified Colleague Volumetric Infusion Pump for marketing after the manufacturer, Baxter Healthcare Corporation of Deerfield, Ill., addressed the problems that caused a series of product recalls in 2005.

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New Technique Treats Axillary Hyperhidrosis

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 28 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with localized axillary hyperhidrosis, a new arthroscopic shaver technique is a safe and effective treatment, according to the results of a study published in the February issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.

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Liposuction Breast Reduction Surgery Evaluated in Study

TUESDAY, Feb. 27 (HealthDay News) -- Breast reduction surgery with liposuction may produce excellent results with a decreased risk of the scarring associated with traditional excisional breast reduction surgery, according to a report published in the February issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. Black patients in particular may benefit from the procedure because of the greater risk of scarring with traditional procedures.

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Bony Elements in the Mid-Face Change Over Time

TUESDAY, Feb. 27 (HealthDay News) -- As people age, the bony elements of the mid-face change dramatically, primarily because of contraction and deterioration and not expansion, according to study findings published in the February issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.

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Liver Graft Dysfunction May Be from Autoimmune Hepatitis

MONDAY, Feb. 26 (HealthDay News) -- Patients infected with hepatitis C virus who develop graft dysfunction after liver transplantation and antiviral treatment may have autoimmune hepatitis rather than organ rejection, according to study findings published in the February issue of Gut.

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Macrophages Linked to Postoperative Ileus

FRIDAY, Feb. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Depleting intestinal muscularis macrophages before surgery reduces the inflammatory responses that lead to postoperative ileus, according to the results of an animal study published in the February issue of Gut.

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Roche Halts Transplant Study Due to Acute Rejection Risk

FRIDAY, Feb. 23 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration and Roche Laboratories, Inc. announced Friday that a clinical trial has been halted after cardiac transplant patients had a higher risk of acute rejection after switching from a combination of calcineurin inhibitor and mycophenolate mofetil (CellCept) to sirolimus (Rapamune) and mycophenolate mofetil 12 weeks after transplant.

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Polymer Scaffold May Treat Anterior Cruciate Ligaments

THURSDAY, Feb. 22 (HealthDay News) -- A synthetic biodegradable polymer scaffold that is implanted surgically may offer an alternative treatment for injured anterior cruciate ligaments, according to the results of a study in rabbits published online Feb. 20 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Early Edition.

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Skin Regeneration Device Improves Facial Appearance

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Skin regeneration using a low-energy device improves the appearance of photodamaged facial skin with minimal downtime, researchers report in the February issue of the Archives of Dermatology.

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Psychopathology Prevalent in Bariatric Surgery Candidates

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Patients seeking bariatric surgery often have a current or past history of psychiatric disorders, which may have an impact on recovery from the surgery and long-term weight loss and maintenance, according to a report in the February issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry.

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Procalcitonin Levels Predict Septic Complications

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Procalcitonin levels correlate with progression and outcome of septic multiorgan dysfunction syndrome, according to study findings published in the February issue of the Archives of Surgery.

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Off-Pump Surgery Does Not Prevent Cognitive Decline

TUESDAY, Feb. 20 (HealthDay News) -- Patients who undergo off-pump coronary artery bypass graft surgery have similar cognitive function and cardiovascular outcomes five years later as patients who undergo on-pump surgery, according to a study in the Feb. 21 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Transfusion Linked to Post-Surgical Clot Risk in Women

TUESDAY, Feb. 20 (HealthDay News) -- Female colorectal cancer patients who receive allogeneic blood transfusions during or after resection are at an elevated risk for in-hospital venous thromboembolism compared to those who do not, according to a report in the February issue of the Archives of Surgery.

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Smoking Cessation Benefits Nasopharyngeal Flora

TUESDAY, Feb. 20 (HealthDay News) -- Smokers typically have high numbers of potential pathogens and low numbers of interfering organisms in the nasopharynx. But smoking cessation can restore the microbial balance to normal levels, researchers report in the February issue of Archives of Otolaryngology--Head & Neck Surgery.

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Surgeon Volume Affects Knee Replacement Outcome

TUESDAY, Feb. 20 (HealthDay News) -- Total knee replacement patients who are operated on at high-volume hospitals by high-volume surgeons have better function two years later than patients treated at low-volume hospitals, researchers report in the February issue of Arthritis & Rheumatism.

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Video Game Play Correlates with Laparoscopy Skill

MONDAY, Feb. 19 (HealthDay News) -- Surgeons who have more skill and experience at playing video games are quicker and have a lower error rate when taking part in a laparoscopy and suturing training program, according to a report in the February issue of the Archives of Surgery.

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Women Less Likely to Have Post-MI Angioplasty

MONDAY, Feb. 19 (HealthDay News) -- Although the higher myocardial infarction mortality rates in women are partially attributable to age, a new study suggests that even after age-adjustment, women with acute myocardial infarction have higher in-hospital mortality rates than men, which is due in part to a lower likelihood of percutaneous coronary intervention. The findings were published online Feb. 19 in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

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Rate of GERD-Related Deaths Is Rising in Finland

MONDAY, Feb. 19 (HealthDay News) -- Between 1987 and 2000, the annual mortality rate from complications related to gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) nearly tripled in Finland despite increased use of anti-reflux medications and surgery, according to study findings published in the February issue of the American Journal of Gastroenterology.

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Laparoscopic Living Donor Nephrectomy Problems Rare

FRIDAY, Feb. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Although complication rates of 16 percent or greater have been reported, a study at one U.S. hospital suggests that laparoscopic living donor nephrectomies can have a quick recovery with a low 4 percent complication rate, according to a report in the January issue of Urology.

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Continuous Infusion Better Than Bolus for Septic Shock

FRIDAY, Feb. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Treating septic shock patients with a continuous infusion of hydrocortisone, rather than bolus injections, reduces hyperglycemia and the attendant risk of developing insulin dependency, as well as nurse workload, according to the results of a study published Feb. 15 in the open access journal Critical Care.

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Surgery Bests Endoscopic Drainage for Pancreatitis Pain

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Surgery is more effective than endoscopic treatment for relief of pain in patients with chronic pancreatitis, according to a report in the Feb. 15 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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High-Power Lasers Safely Treat Large Renal Stones

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Holmium-yttrium-aluminum-garnet (YAG) laser lithotripsy, already widely used for the treatment of a range of diseases of the urinary tract, is a safe and effective treatment for large renal stones, according to a report published in the January issue of Urology.

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Study Examines Timing of Glycoprotein IIb/IIIa Therapy

TUESDAY, Feb. 13 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with acute coronary syndrome seem to have similar rates of ischemia at 30 days if glycoprotein IIb/IIIa inhibitor treatment is initiated prior to angiography or deferred until angioplasty, and lower rates of major bleeding at 30 days if therapy is deferred, according to a report in the Feb. 14 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Company Halts Manufacture of Faulty Infusion Pumps

TUESDAY, Feb. 13 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has announced that Cardinal Health 303 Inc., of San Diego, formerly known as Alaris Medical Systems, Inc., has agreed to stop manufacturing and distributing its Signature Edition infusion pumps due to a design defect.

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FDA OKs Suture Made with Genetically Engineered Bacteria

TUESDAY, Feb. 13 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved a novel suture called the TephaFLEX Absorbable Suture, which is made using DNA technology. Tepha, Inc. of Cambridge, Mass., uses genetically engineered bacteria to make the polymer suture's raw material.

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FDA Changes Ketek Label, Removes Two Indications

MONDAY, Feb. 12 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has stepped up the warning label for Ketek (telithromycin), and removed two of the three indications for the antibiotic. A joint advisory committee met in December and concluded that the risks of the drug outweigh the benefits for acute bacterial sinusitis and acute bacterial exacerbations of chronic bronchitis. Ketek can still be used to treat mild-to-moderately severe community-acquired pneumonia.

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FDA Clears Vascular Shunt to Prevent Limb Amputation

FRIDAY, Feb. 9 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved a vascular shunt that can help prevent limb amputation, particularly in soldiers wounded in combat. The Temporary Limb Salvage Shunt is made by Renfrew, Scotland-based Vascutek Ltd., and received approval within a week due to its usefulness in treating field injuries.

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Shoulder Prosthesis an Option if Hemiarthroplasty Fails

FRIDAY, Feb. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Early research suggests that the reverse shoulder prosthesis may help patients who fail hemiarthroplasty for proximal humeral fracture. The new study results are published in the Feb. 1 issue of the Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery.

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Hemodialysis Patients Have Poor Hip Surgery Outcome

FRIDAY, Feb. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Frequent complications and a higher mortality are often the result of hip fracture surgery in end-stage renal disease patients who are on hemodialysis, according to a report in the February issue of the Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery.

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Electrodiagnosis Accurate for Spinal Stenosis

FRIDAY, Feb. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Electrodiagnosis gives the most accurate diagnosis of spinal stenosis in older patients because, unlike magnetic resonance imaging, it can distinguish between symptomatic and asymptomatic cases, according to study findings published in the February issue of the Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery.

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Orlistat Gets Over-the-Counter Approval from FDA

THURSDAY, Feb. 8 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the adult weight-loss aid orlistat for over-the-counter (OTC) sale, although higher doses of the drug will still require a prescription. The drug came onto the market in 1999. The OTC capsules will be manufactured by GlaxoSmithKline and marketed under the name Alli.

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Manipulation Boosts Flexion After Knee Replacement

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 7 (HealthDay News) -- In the weeks and months after total knee arthroplasty, postoperative manipulation under anesthesia can improve flexion in patients who need it, according to the results of a study published in the February issue of the Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery.

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Increased Mortality Seen with Post-CABG Aprotinin

TUESDAY, Feb. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Compared with the use of lysine analogs or no treatment after coronary artery bypass graft surgery, aprotinin is associated with increased mortality over the five-year postoperative period, according to a report in the Feb. 7 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Drug Improves Outcomes in Patients Undergoing CABG

MONDAY, Feb. 5 (HealthDay News) -- Nesiritide, which is identical to B-type natriuretic peptide secreted by the ventricles, improves renal function and reduces length of hospital stay and mortality in patients undergoing coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG), according to study findings published in the Feb. 13 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Stent May Help Those with Severe Intracranial Stenosis

MONDAY, Feb. 5 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with severe intracranial atherosclerotic stenosis benefit from angioplasty and stent placement just as those with moderate stenosis do, and do not have a greater risk of stroke after the procedure, according to study findings published in the Feb. 6 issue of Neurology.

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Modest Quality Boost in Pay-for-Performance Hospitals

MONDAY, Feb. 5 (HealthDay News) -- A demonstration project funded by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services suggests that pay-for-performance can improve the quality of care in hospitals from 2.6 to 4.1 percent compared with hospitals that adopt public reporting as a quality improvement measure, according to a report in the Feb. 1 New England Journal of Medicine.

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FDA Approves Drug for Von Willebrand Disease

MONDAY, Feb. 5 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved a new drug for patients with von Willebrand disease. The drug, Antihemophilic Factor/von Willebrand Factor Complex (Human), Alphanate, is manufactured by Grifols Biologicals Inc., Los Angeles, Calif., and is derived from pooled human plasma.

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Two Cases of West Nile Transmitted Via Transfusion

MONDAY, Feb. 5 (HealthDay News) -- Two new cases of West Nile virus transmitted through blood transfusions have been reported, according to findings published in the Feb. 2 issue of the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. The South Dakota cases occurred in 2006 and call attention to the fact that, while rare, such transmission can still occur even with nationwide screening of the blood supply that began in 2003.

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Prosthetic Function Improved by Targeted Reinnervation

FRIDAY, Feb. 2 (HealthDay News) -- A patient who underwent targeted reinnervation gained substantially better control of her prosthetic arm, according to a report published online Feb. 2 in The Lancet.

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Study Examines Pediatric Soccer-Related Injuries

THURSDAY, Feb. 1 (HealthDay News) -- Between 1990 and 2003, U.S. children who played soccer experienced nearly 1.6 million sport-related injuries and the number of injuries increased sharply among female players, according to study findings published in the February issue of the American Journal of Sports Medicine.

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