May 2015 Briefing - Geriatrics

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Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Geriatrics for May 2015. 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.

AMA: Physicians Driving the Slowing of Health Care Costs

FRIDAY, May 29, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Low physician spending is contributing to an overall slowing of health care costs, according to a viewpoint piece published by the American Medical Association (AMA).

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Catheterization Increasing for Seniors With STEMI

FRIDAY, May 29, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- From 1999 to 2009 there was a decrease in the proportion of older adults with ST-segment elevation acute myocardial infarction (STEMI) who did not undergo cardiac catheterization, according to a study published in the May issue of the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

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AMD Predicts Poorer Survival in Older Women

FRIDAY, May 29, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) predicts poorer survival, especially among women aged 80 years or older, according to a study published in the May issue of the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

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Fruit, Vegetable Intake Linked to Hip Fracture

FRIDAY, May 29, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Fruit and vegetable intake is associated with hip fracture, with a higher rate of hip fracture for intake below five servings/day, according to a study published in the June issue of the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research.

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14.9 Million New Cancer Cases Worldwide in 2013

THURSDAY, May 28, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Between 1990 and 2013, the proportion of deaths worldwide caused by cancer rose from 12 to 15 percent. During that time, years of healthy life lost to cancer increased 29 percent, according to data on 28 types of cancer in 188 countries published online May 28 in JAMA Oncology.

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Vegan Diet Tied to Weight Loss, Improved Neuropathy in DM

THURSDAY, May 28, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- A vegan diet might help patients with diabetic neuropathy lose weight and find some pain relief, a small pilot study suggests. The findings were published online May 26 in Nutrition & Diabetes.

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House Call Primary Care Practices Vary Substantially

THURSDAY, May 28, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Home-based primary care practices vary in terms of size and approaches to quality of care assessment, according to a study published in the May issue of the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

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Smartphone Electrocardiograms Deemed Equivalent to Standard

THURSDAY, May 28, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Smartphone electrocardiogram (ECG) accurately detects baseline intervals, atrial rate, and rhythm, according to a study published in the May issue of the Journal of Cardiovascular Electrophysiology.

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Post-CABG Predictors of Stroke Identified for Diabetes Patients

THURSDAY, May 28, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with diabetes mellitus undergoing multivessel coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG), predictors of stroke include previous stroke, warfarin use, and surgery outside the United States or Canada, according to research published in the May 15 issue of The American Journal of Cardiology.

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White Matter Changes May ID Markers of Alzheimer's Earlier

WEDNESDAY, May 27, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Damage to the brain's white matter may be an early sign of certain types of Alzheimer's disease, according to a study published online May 27 in Radiology.

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More Evidence Supports Higher Fiber Intake to Lower DM Risk

WEDNESDAY, May 27, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- More evidence that a high fiber diet helps protect against type 2 diabetes has been presented in research published online May 26 in Diabetologia.

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Pre-Op β-Blockers May Work Against Heart-Healthy Patients

WEDNESDAY, May 27, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- While patients with three or four heart risk factors should still be given a β-blocker before surgery, those with no risk for heart disease shouldn't get the medication as it might lower the odds of a good outcome, according to a report published online May 27 in JAMA Surgery.

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Review: Fracture Risk Up With Subclinical Hyperthyroidism

WEDNESDAY, May 27, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Subclinical hyperthyroidism ups risk for hip and other fractures, according to a review published in the May 26 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Moderate Alcohol Intake May Harm Elderly Hearts

WEDNESDAY, May 27, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Moderate drinking may harm heart health in the elderly, and women appear to be at greater risk for this alcohol-related heart damage than men, according to research published online May 26 in Circulation: Cardiovascular Imaging.

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Hospice May Help Surviving Spouse Cope With Death

WEDNESDAY, May 27, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Hospice care may help a surviving spouse better cope with depression following the death of a loved one, according to a study published online May 26 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Caution Urged When Using EHR Shortcut Features

TUESDAY, May 26, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Caution should be exercised with use of electronic health record (EHR) documentation short cuts, according to a report published in Medical Economics.

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Gender-Based Differences in Glycemic Control in T2DM

TUESDAY, May 26, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with type 2 diabetes, there are gender-based differences in glycemic control and hypoglycemia after insulin treatment, according to research published in the June issue of Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism.

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Diet and Exercise May Not Be Enough to Ward Off Sarcopenia

TUESDAY, May 26, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- It's not clear whether diet and exercise can prevent muscle loss as people age, according to a new review published online May 11 in Clinical Interventions in Aging.

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DXA Screening Found to Be Underused and Overused

TUESDAY, May 26, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Too few women at high risk for osteoporosis are being tested for the condition, while too many women at low risk are being screened, according to new research published online May 19 in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

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CDC: Low-Income Southerners at Highest Risk of Vision Loss

TUESDAY, May 26, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- New U.S. government research connects severe vision loss with poverty, and reveals that people in the southern part of the country have the highest prevalence of both poverty and severe vision loss. The findings were published in the May 22 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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Increasing Omega-3 Intake May Boost Cognitive Flexibility

TUESDAY, May 26, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Consuming more omega-3 fatty acids may benefit patients at risk for Alzheimer's disease, according to a new study published online May 21 in Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience.

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Large Practices Focused on Small Selection of EHR Products

FRIDAY, May 22, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Sixty percent of clinicians in practices with 26 or more clinicians report use of one of 10 electronic health record (EHR) products, according to a report published by AmericanEHR Partners.

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Front Desk Staff Has Key Role in Managing Practice Cash Flow

FRIDAY, May 22, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Three steps that can be implemented by front desk staff can help increase practices' cash flow, according to an article published in Medical Economics.

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AMA: Avoiding Distress in Medical School

FRIDAY, May 22, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Understanding the key drivers underlying medical students' distress can help address the issues and enhance student well-being, according to an article published by the American Medical Association.

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Over One-Third of Americans Have Metabolic Syndrome

THURSDAY, May 21, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- More than one-third of U.S. adults have metabolic syndrome, according to a research letter published in the May 19 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Support Groups for At-Home Walking Benefit PAD Patients

THURSDAY, May 21, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Support groups that encourage walking exercises at home can improve the mobility of patients with peripheral artery disease (PAD), according to a study published online May 20 in the Journal of the American Heart Association.

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Proper Analysis Over Intuition for Avoiding Improper Antibiotic Use

THURSDAY, May 21, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Misdiagnosis often leads to improper antibiotic use in hospitals, according to a study published online May 18 in Infection Control & Hospital Epidemiology, the journal of the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America.

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CV Autonomic Neuropathy Predicts Urological Issues

THURSDAY, May 21, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For men with type 1 diabetes, cardiovascular autonomic neuropathy is associated with erectile dysfunction and/or lower urinary tract symptoms, according to a study published in the June issue of The Journal of Urology.

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Gender Differences in Receipt of End-of-Life Care

THURSDAY, May 21, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- There are gender differences in receipt of end-of-life (EoL) care among terminally ill cancer patients, with male patients more likely to receive intensive care unit (ICU) care, according to a study published online May 14 in Cancer.

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High-Value Care Advice Provided for Cancer Screening

WEDNESDAY, May 20, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- High-value care advice has been provided for screening for five common types of cancer. The guidelines were published in the May 19 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Hospital Stays Longer Without Prophylactic Laxatives

WEDNESDAY, May 20, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Failure to use prophylactic laxatives in elderly congestive heart failure (CHF) patients who use laxatives at home is associated with a significantly longer hospital length of stay (LOS), according to a study published online May 13 in the Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

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Recommendations Developed for Responding to ICU Tx Requests

WEDNESDAY, May 20, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Multisociety recommendations have been developed to help physicians respond to requests for potentially inappropriate treatments in intensive care units. The policy statement was published online May 15 in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

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Statins, Fibrates Linked to 30% Lower Stroke Risk in Elderly

WEDNESDAY, May 20, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Older patients taking statins or fibrates saw their risk of stroke over almost a decade decline by about one-third, according to a report published online May 19 in The BMJ.

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Mortality, Stroke Risks Vary Widely After Carotid Stenting

TUESDAY, May 19, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The risk of death or stroke after carotid artery stenting varies widely among U.S. hospitals, with the odds four times higher at some medical centers, new research suggests. The study appears in the May issue of JACC: Cardiovascular Interventions.

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Pain Med Rx + Medical Cannabis Doesn't Seem to Up Abuse Risk

TUESDAY, May 19, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Medical marijuana users don't appear to increase their risk for drug or alcohol abuse if they also take prescription pain medications (PPMs), according to research published in the May issue of the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs.

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Most Distinctive Causes of Death Mapped by U.S. State

TUESDAY, May 19, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The most distinctive causes of death for each U.S. state have been mapped in a report published online May 14 in the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Preventing Chronic Disease.

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Tips Provided for Doctors Who Want to Move to Private Practice

MONDAY, May 18, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For physicians who want to transition to private practice, several factors need consideration, including finances, legal matters, and insurance, according to an article published in Medical Economics.

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AAFP Urges CMS to Safeguard Continuity of Care for Seniors

MONDAY, May 18, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- In a letter to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) and other organizations emphasize the importance of encouraging Medicare beneficiaries to engage with their primary care physician in an annual wellness visit.

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Early Insulin Initiation Beneficial in Seniors With T2DM

MONDAY, May 18, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For older Medicare beneficiaries with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), early insulin initiation offers clinical benefit, according to a study published online May 8 in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

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Physical Activity Boosts Longevity in Older Men

FRIDAY, May 15, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- A little exercise late in life may help men live longer, new research from Norway suggests. The study appears online May 14 in the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

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Tramadol-Related ER Visits Up 2005 to 2011

THURSDAY, May 14, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- There was a sharp rise in the number of emergency department visits involving tramadol between 2005 and 2011, two new government reports show.

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Grip Strength Could Be Useful Indicator of CVD, Mortality Risk

THURSDAY, May 14, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Testing hand-grip strength could be an inexpensive and simple way of identifying people at increased risk for myocardial infarction, stroke, and premature death, according to a study published online May 13 in The Lancet.

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Cognitive Improvements With Active Singing in Dementia

THURSDAY, May 14, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- An active singing program can improve cognition and life satisfaction among individuals with dementia in an assisted living facility, according to a letter to the editor published in the April issue of the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

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Depression Tied to Higher Stroke Risk, Even After Remission

WEDNESDAY, May 13, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Depression in older adults appears to significantly increase the risk of a stroke, even after depressive symptoms remit, a new study suggests. The report was published online May 13 in the Journal of the American Heart Association.

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ADT for Prostate Cancer Tied to Impaired Cognition

WEDNESDAY, May 13, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Men undergoing androgen-deprivation therapy (ADT) to treat prostate cancer may experience impaired cognitive function within the first six months that persists for at least a year, a new study suggests. The report was published online May 11 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Disc Degeneration Tied to Severe Abdominal Aortic Calcification

TUESDAY, May 12, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Greater abdominal aortic calcification (AAC) severity, faster AAC progression, and higher mortality are seen for older men with severe disc degeneration, according to a study published in the May issue of Arthritis & Rheumatology.

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Guidance Offered to Help Doctors Deal With 'Dr. Google'

TUESDAY, May 12, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Good communication is the key to resolving conflicts between the tests and treatment a patient may want based on online searches and those a physician believes are necessary, according to an article published online in Medical Economics.

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New Health Care Index Reports Increases in Consumer Costs

TUESDAY, May 12, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- A new Health Care Index shows increases in consumer costs, according to a report published by U.S. News & World Report.

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Comprehensiveness of PCP Care Tied to Costs, Hospitalizations

TUESDAY, May 12, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Increasing family physician comprehensiveness of care correlates with lower Medicare costs and hospitalizations, according to a study published in the May/June issue of the Annals of Family Medicine.

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Nondisclosure Clauses Often Used in Malpractice Settlements

TUESDAY, May 12, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Nondisclosure clauses are frequently used in malpractice settlement agreements, according to research published online May 11 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Adding Olive Oil, Nuts to Diet Boosts Aging Brain Health

TUESDAY, May 12, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Adding more olive oil or nuts to a Mediterranean diet -- one rich in fruits, vegetables, fish, and whole grains and low in red meat -- may help improve cognitive function with advancing age, a new study suggests. The report was published online May 11 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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AMA: Six Traits of Financially Prepared Female Physicians

MONDAY, May 11, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The traits of a financially prepared female physician include having a retirement portfolio that is on track or ahead of schedule for age and career stage, having a liquid emergency fund, and feeling adequately protected in the event of a disability, according to a report published by the American Medical Association (AMA).

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Age-Related Macular Degeneration, Mortality Linked

MONDAY, May 11, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a predictor of poor survival, especially among women aged 80 years and older, according to a study published online May 4 in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

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PTSD Associated With Premature Senescence

FRIDAY, May 8, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) seems to be associated with premature aging, according to a review published online May 7 in The American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry.

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GEDI WISE Model Feasible for Geriatric Emergency Care

FRIDAY, May 8, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The Geriatric Emergency Department Innovations in Care through Workforce, Informatics, and Structural Enhancements (GEDI WISE) model seems feasible for transforming geriatric emergency care, according to a study published in the May issue of Health Affairs.

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Prostate CA Patients on Hormone Tx May Benefit From Statin

FRIDAY, May 8, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Statins may slow the progression of prostate cancer in patients receiving androgen deprivation therapy, according to a study published online May 7 in JAMA Oncology.

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Medical Students Want to Focus Learning on Preparing for Future

THURSDAY, May 7, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Medical students report wanting to learn more about topics that are not currently being taught, including leadership training, health policy, health economics, and experiential learning, according to a report from the American Medical Association (AMA).

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ACA Tied to Nearly 17 Million Gaining Health Coverage

THURSDAY, May 7, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- As a result of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), nearly 17 million previously uninsured Americans now have health coverage, according to a 2013 to 2015 report from the Rand Corporation.

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CDC: Mortality Rate From Falls Up for U.S. Seniors

THURSDAY, May 7, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The number of American seniors who die from fall-related injuries has nearly doubled since 2000, according to a May data brief published by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics.

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More Hospice in Nursing Homes, Associated Costs Are Up

THURSDAY, May 7, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- More nursing home residents are opting for hospice care, but at an overall increase in Medicare expenditures, according to a new study published in the May 7 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Strategies Provided for Maximizing Payment

WEDNESDAY, May 6, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians should use standard billing practices, including regular statements, to maximize accounts, and know that collection agencies and lawyers can help collect payment when necessary, according to an article published in Medical Economics.

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Full Rx Coverage Ups Outcomes for Patients Discharged After MI

WEDNESDAY, May 6, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For patients discharged from hospital after myocardial infarction, full prescription coverage is associated with improved health outcomes and less resource use, according to research published online May 5 in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

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PCI Beats Medical Tx in Stable Ischemic Heart Disease

WEDNESDAY, May 6, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with stable ischemic heart disease (SIHD) and objective evidence of ischemia, percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) is associated with lower mortality than medical therapy (MT), according to research published in the May 1 issue of The American Journal of Cardiology.

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Digoxin Tied to Higher Mortality Risk in A-Fib, Heart Failure

TUESDAY, May 5, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Use of digoxin may increase the risk of premature death in patients with atrial fibrillation and heart failure, according to research published online May 4 in the European Heart Journal.

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High-Value Research of 2014 Presented for Geriatric Medicine

TUESDAY, May 5, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Articles relating to overtreatment of cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, and dementia care, as well as reduction of polypharmacy and adverse drug effects, are included in a special update summary published online April 30 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Stroke Patients Don't Appear to Benefit From EHR Use

MONDAY, May 4, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Stroke patients fare about the same in terms of quality of care and illness progression whether their hospitals have embraced electronic health records or not. These findings were published in the May 12 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Five 'Top Issues' to Be Discussed at AMA Medical Student Forum

MONDAY, May 4, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Issues that will be at the forefront of the National Medical Student Meeting include vaccinations, health care economics, Medicaid expansion, medical education loans, and the nationwide opioid epidemic, according to a report from the American Medical Association (AMA).

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Trade-Off for Six Weeks Versus Six Months of Triple Tx Post Stent

MONDAY, May 4, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For patients receiving oral anticoagulation after drug-eluting stent implantation, six weeks of triple therapy is not superior to six months of therapy with respect to net clinical outcomes, according to a study published in the April 28 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Church-Based Intervention Linked to Healthy Lifestyle Changes

FRIDAY, May 1, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- A pilot church-based diabetes self-management intervention in a Latino community is associated with improvement in lifestyle factors that affect diabetes risk, according to a study published online April 28 in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

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Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest Outcomes Vary by Time to CPR

FRIDAY, May 1, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA), outcomes differ by time to first cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and first documented rhythm, according to a study published online April 30 in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

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2 Minute Walk Each Hour May Reduce Odds of Premature Death

FRIDAY, May 1, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Getting up and walking for two minutes every hour could help reverse the negative health effects from prolonged sitting, new research suggests. The findings were published online April 30 in the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

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High-Value Research of 2014 Presented for Internal Medicine

FRIDAY, May 1, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Articles relating to atrial fibrillation, venous thromboembolism, acute bronchitis, ambulatory blood pressure monitoring for hypertension screening, and guidelines relevant to generalist practice are included in a special update summary published online April 30 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Nitrofurantoin Not Best Choice for UTIs in Older Women

FRIDAY, May 1, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Nitrofurantoin may not be the most effective option for treatment of urinary tract infections in older women, according to a new study published online April 27 in CMAJ, the journal of the Canadian Medical Association.

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