June 2017 Briefing - Pain Management

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Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Pain Management for June 2017. 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.

Poll Finds Seniors Struggling With Drug Costs Don't Seek Help

FRIDAY, June 30, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Many older Americans who have difficulty paying for their medications don't seek help in finding more economical options, according to the University of Michigan National Poll on Healthy Aging.

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Doctors Urged to Take Care With Electronic Communications

THURSDAY, June 29, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Care should be taken when conveying electronic messages to patients, according to a report published by the American Medical Association (AMA).

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Health of the Nation Presented in 40th Annual CDC Report

THURSDAY, June 29, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- The health of the United States is summarized in the 40th annual report published by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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Wireless Peripheral Nerve Stimulation Safe and Effective

THURSDAY, June 29, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Wireless peripheral nerve stimulation (PNS) is beneficial for chronic intractable pain secondary to post-herpetic neuralgia, according to a case report published online June 20 in PAIN Practice.

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FDA Seeks to Increase Number of Generic Drugs on Market

WEDNESDAY, June 28, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- New measures to increase the number of generic prescription drugs available to Americans have been taken by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

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Rx Changes, Counseling, Regular Visits Can Cut Opioid Deaths

WEDNESDAY, June 28, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Three simple steps could decrease opioid-related mortality by about a third, according to a report published online June 26 in Drug and Alcohol Dependence.

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Case Report: Development of RA in Transplanted Hands

WEDNESDAY, June 28, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- In a case report published online June 27 in the Annals of Internal Medicine, rheumatoid arthritis is diagnosed in the hands of a patient who underwent bilateral hand transplantation.

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Two-Step Irradiance Better for Condyloma Acuminatum

TUESDAY, June 27, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with condyloma acuminatum (CA), a two-step irradiance schedule is associated with a significantly greater reduction in pain during treatment than single-dose cold compress, according to a study published online June 22 in Lasers in Surgery and Medicine.

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Higher Fish Intake Appears to Reduce RA Symptoms

MONDAY, June 26, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Eating fish at least twice a week may significantly reduce the pain and swelling associated with rheumatoid arthritis, according to a study published online June 21 in Arthritis Care & Research.

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Guided Approach to Exercise May Help Chronic Fatigue Patients

FRIDAY, June 23, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- An expert-guided, self-help exercise program may help patients with chronic fatigue syndrome, according to a study published online June 22 in The Lancet.

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Carpal Tunnel Up With Increased Electronic Device Use

FRIDAY, June 23, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Extended use of smartphones and other hand-held electronic devices leads to an increased risk of carpal tunnel syndrome, according to a study published online June 21 in Muscle & Nerve.

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Anti-TNF-α Rx Improves Sleep Quality in Ankylosing Spondylitis

FRIDAY, June 23, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Anti-tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) therapy improves sleep quality (SQ) in patients with ankylosing spondylitis (AS) without any improvement in polysomnography (PSG) measures, according to a study published online May 29 in the International Journal of Rheumatic Diseases.

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Patient-Controlled Analgesia Reduces Pain at Higher Cost

THURSDAY, June 22, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- For patients presenting to the emergency department in pain, who are subsequently admitted to the hospital, the cost per hour in moderate or severe pain averted is higher for patient-controlled analgesia versus standard care, according to a study published online May 26 in Anaesthesia.

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Opioid Rx Too Often Given to Back Pain Patients With Depression

THURSDAY, June 22, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with low back pain who are depressed are more likely to be prescribed opioids, and to be prescribed higher doses, according to a study published online June 20 in PAIN Reports.

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1991-2014 Saw Minimal Change in Health Spending Per State

THURSDAY, June 22, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- From 1991 to 2014 there was minimal change in health spending by state, according to a study published online June 14 in Health Affairs.

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Sharp Rise Among Women for Opioid-Related Hospitalizations

WEDNESDAY, June 21, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Opioid-related hospitalizations among women in the United States increased far faster than among men between 2005 and 2014, according to the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ).

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Polymorphism in rs4343 of ACE Gene Linked to Migraine

WEDNESDAY, June 21, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Angiotensin I-converting enzyme (ACE) gene rs4343 polymorphism is associated with the risk of migraine, according to a letter to the editor published online June 18 in CNS Neuroscience & Therapeutics.

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Yoga Noninferior to Physical Therapy in Chronic Low Back Pain

TUESDAY, June 20, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Yoga may be as effective as physical therapy for pain relief and improved function in patients with chronic low back pain, according to a study published online June 20 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Marital Status Among Factors Tied to Gout Rx Adherence

TUESDAY, June 20, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with gout, higher levels of belief about medicines, presence of comorbidity, and being married appear to increase urate-lowering therapy adherence, according to a study published online June 15 in the Journal of Clinical Nursing.

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Acupuncture Found to Be an Effective Analgesia Option in ER

MONDAY, June 19, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Acupuncture is a safe and effective alternative to pain medications for some emergency department patients, according to a study published in the June 19 issue of the Medical Journal of Australia.

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Hydrotherapy Plus Conventional Drugs Beneficial in RA

MONDAY, June 19, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), hydrotherapy in addition to conventional drugs is associated with improved antioxidant status, according to a study published online June 14 in the International Journal of Rheumatic Diseases.

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Older Age Needn't Be a Barrier to Herniated Disc Surgery

MONDAY, June 19, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- People over age 65 shouldn't avoid surgery for a herniated disc just because of their age, as they can benefit from the procedure as much as younger patients, according to a research letter published recently in JAMA Surgery.

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Opioid Addicts Find It Hard to Avoid Fentanyl

FRIDAY, June 16, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- More than half of all drug overdose deaths may be caused by fentanyl, according to two studies published online recently in the International Journal of Drug Policy.

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Certain Criteria May Be Better Than Others in RA Assessment

FRIDAY, June 16, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), the performances of the Clinical Disease Activity Index (CDAI) and Simplified Disease Activity Index (SDAI) appear to be better than that of the Disease Assessment Score of 28 joints—C-reactive protein (DAS-28-CRP), according to a study published online June 12 in the International Journal of Rheumatic Diseases.

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Health Insurers Recruiting Former Pharma Reps to Cut Costs

FRIDAY, June 16, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Health insurers are recruiting former pharmaceutical company representatives to educate doctors and help save money on prescription medications, according to a report published June 8 in Kaiser Health News.

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AMA Endeavors to Increase Transparency of Rx Pricing

THURSDAY, June 15, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- The American Medical Association (AMA) is calling for more transparency in drug pricing amid rising costs that are putting some lifesaving medications out of reach for patients and communities.

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Strategies Implemented to Cut Opioid ODs, Deaths in Maryland

THURSDAY, June 15, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Strategies are being implemented to reduce opioid overdoses and deaths in Maryland, according to a report published by the American Medical Association (AMA).

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Telemedicine Consult As Effective As Office Visit for Headache

THURSDAY, June 15, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Telemedicine consultation in cases of nonacute headache is as efficient and safe as a traditional consultation, according to research published online June 14 in Neurology.

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Olive Oil, Ibuprofen May Have Synergistic Effects

TUESDAY, June 13, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- The combination of extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) and ibuprofen at a therapeutic dose is superior to the two compounds used separately, according to an experimental study published online June 7 in the International Journal of Rheumatic Diseases.

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Medical Students Lacking Proficiency in BP Measurements

MONDAY, June 12, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Medical students frequently do not achieve mastery of the skills necessary for accurate measurement of blood pressure (BP), according to a study published online April 28 in the Journal of Clinical Hypertension.

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New Bill With Tort Reforms Will Protect Iowa Physicians

FRIDAY, June 9, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- A new bill with tort reforms to protect Iowa physicians will take effect July 1, according to a report published by the American Medical Association (AMA).

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Opioids Tend to Be Over-Prescribed After Cesarean Section

FRIDAY, June 9, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Women are routinely prescribed more opioid medications than they need after cesarean sections, creating a high risk for misuse, according to three studies published in the July issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

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FDA Requests Removal of Opana ER From Market

FRIDAY, June 9, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Sales of reformulated Opana ER should be halted in the United States, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration says.

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U.S. Leads in Income-Based Health Care Inequalities

THURSDAY, June 8, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- The United States has larger income-related differences in perceptions of health and health care than other middle- and high-income countries, according to a report published in the June issue of Health Affairs.

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Researchers Target Zolmitriptan Dosing for Pediatric Migraine

THURSDAY, June 8, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- In a report published online June 5 in the Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, recommended dosing regimens of zolmitriptan are suggested for children with migraine.

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Chronic Pain Tied to Increased Risk of Memory Loss

WEDNESDAY, June 7, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Chronic pain is associated with increased odds of mental decline and dementia, according to research published online June 5 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Health System Sees Success With E-Visits Via Patient Portal

WEDNESDAY, June 7, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Patient portals can successfully offer access to physicians without office visits, according to a report published online May 30 by the American Medical Association.

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Ablation Successful for Trigeminal Neuralgia in Pregnancy

WEDNESDAY, June 7, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Trigeminal neuralgia in pregnancy can be managed successfully by conventional radiofrequency ablation of Gasserian ganglion, according to a case report published online June 2 in Pain Practice.

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Many Bariatric Surgery Patients Using Opioids Seven Years Later

WEDNESDAY, June 7, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- About 20 percent of U.S. bariatric surgery patients are still using prescription opioids seven years later, according to a study published recently in Surgery for Obesity and Related Diseases.

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CDC: High-Deductible Health Plan Use Rising Among Employers

WEDNESDAY, June 7, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- High-deductible health plans are becoming more common among U.S. adults with employer-sponsored health insurance coverage, according to a report issued June 6 by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS).

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Positive Clinical Effects Seen for Placebos Without Deception

TUESDAY, June 6, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Open-label placebos are associated with a positive effect compared with no treatment in a variety of clinical conditions, according to a review and meta-analysis published online May 30 in the Journal of Evidence-Based Medicine.

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MTHFR A1298C Polymorphism Not Linked to MTX Outcomes in RA

FRIDAY, June 2, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- The methylene tetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) gene A1298C polymorphism does not appear to be related to methotrexate (MTX) efficacy or toxicity in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), according to a meta-analysis published online May 25 in the International Journal of Rheumatic Diseases.

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Cool Water Works As Well As Hot for Ridding Hands of Germs

FRIDAY, June 2, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- For effective hand hygiene, water temperature matters less than time, according to a study published in the June issue of the Journal of Food Protection.

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Excess Weight Increases Costs Across Health Care Settings

THURSDAY, June 1, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Excess weight is associated with increased costs across health care settings, with the highest percentage increases seen in costs for medications, according to research published online May 22 in Obesity Reviews.

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Quadriceps Exercise Relieves Pain in Knee Osteoarthritis

THURSDAY, June 1, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- A quadriceps isometric contraction exercise method is effective for relieving pain in knee osteoarthritis (OA), according to a study published online May 25 in the International Journal of Rheumatic Diseases.

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