May 2017 Briefing - Neurology

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

Evacetrapib Appears Futile in High-Risk Vascular Disease

WEDNESDAY, May 31, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with high-risk vascular disease, evacetrapib does not affect the primary efficacy end point of first occurrence of any component of a composite of death from cardiovascular causes, myocardial infarction, stroke, coronary revascularization, or hospitalization for unstable angina, according to a study published in the May 18 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Social Psychology May Help With Physician Error Disclosure

TUESDAY, May 30, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Lessons from social psychology can be used to improve behavioral changes in terms of error disclosure, according to research published online May 18 in Medical Education.

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High-Risk Pools May Represent Step Back for U.S. Health Care

TUESDAY, May 30, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Proposed legislation as part of the American Health Care Act, which includes the option of high-risk pools, is not likely to reduce costs, according to an Ideas and Opinions piece published online May 23 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Sleeping Sickness Medication May Help Lessen ASD Symptoms

TUESDAY, May 30, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Suramin, a drug first used in the early 1900s to treat sleeping sickness, has shown promise in an early trial as a potential treatment for autism spectrum disorder (ASD), according to research published online May 26 in the Annals of Clinical and Translational Neurology.

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New Health Care Act Could Result in 23 Million Losing Insurance

FRIDAY, May 26, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- The Republican-led bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that passed the House this month would result in 23 million Americans losing their health insurance coverage, according to a report issued by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO).

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New Bill Intends to Repeal Limits on Physician-Owned Hospitals

FRIDAY, May 26, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- A new bill introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives would repeal the federal law essentially banning construction of physician-owned hospitals and making it difficult for these facilities to grow, according to a report published by the American Medical Association (AMA).

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No Proof Special Diets, Supplements Work for Autism

FRIDAY, May 26, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- There is no solid evidence that any diet changes or supplements to ease symptoms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) work, according to research published online May 26 in Pediatrics.

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Factors Raise Risk of Pregnancy-Related Stroke in Preeclampsia

FRIDAY, May 26, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Several factors raise the risk of pregnancy-related stroke in women with preeclampsia, according to a study published online May 25 in Stroke.

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Targeting ANGPTL3 Can Significantly Lower Cholesterol

FRIDAY, May 26, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Two separate research groups say they've successfully reduced cholesterol in humans by using different methods to block the angiopoietin-like 3 (ANGPTL3) gene. The findings were published online May 24 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Cognitive Decline Linked to Visual Field Variability

FRIDAY, May 26, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- For patients diagnosed as having glaucoma or glaucoma suspects, cognitive decline is associated with increased visual field variability, according to a study published online May 18 in JAMA Ophthalmology.

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CDC: Alzheimer's Mortality Up 55 Percent From 1999 to 2014

FRIDAY, May 26, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- As more baby boomers age, deaths from Alzheimer's disease have risen 54.5 percent, and in many cases the heavy burden of caregiving has fallen on loved ones, according to research published in the May 26 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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Riboflavin Shows Positive Effect for Migraine in Adults

FRIDAY, May 26, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Riboflavin is well tolerated and has a positive therapeutic effect in prophylactic treatment of migraine headache in adults, according to a review published online May 8 in the Journal of Clinical Pharmacy and Therapeutics.

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Hospitals Vary Widely in Moving Stroke Patients to Comfort Care

THURSDAY, May 25, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- U.S. hospitals differ greatly in how often they move new stroke patients from treatment to comfort or hospice care, according to a study published online May 24 in Neurology: Clinical Practice.

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New Interactive Module Aims to Clarify Professional Boundaries

THURSDAY, May 25, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- A new interactive training module in medical ethics can help physicians to understand professional boundaries, according to a report published by the American Medical Association (AMA).

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Cannabidiol Promising for Seizures in Dravet Syndrome

THURSDAY, May 25, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Cannabidiol can reduce seizure frequency in patients with Dravet Syndrome, according to a study published in the May 25 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Orthostatic Hypotension in T2DM Linked to Riser Type Circadian BP

THURSDAY, May 25, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with type 2 diabetes, orthostatic hypotension (OH) is associated with riser patterns in the blood pressure (BP) circadian rhythm, as well as increased rates of mortality and major adverse cardiac and cerebrovascular events, according to a study published online May 11 in the Journal of Diabetes Investigation.

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Path to Empathy Deemed As Vital As Being Empathetic

THURSDAY, May 25, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Different paths to perspective of another's experience are associated with varying effect on helpers' health during helping behavior, according to a study published online April 16 in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology.

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Doctors Urged to Check Patient Drug History Before Opioid Rx

WEDNESDAY, May 24, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Prescription databases can help combat drug abuse when doctors are required by law to check them before writing opioid prescriptions, according to a study to be published in a future issue of the American Economic Journal: Economic Policy.

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Mortality Rates Found Lower at Major Teaching Hospitals

WEDNESDAY, May 24, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Older adults treated at major teaching facilities are less likely to die in the weeks and months following their discharge than patients admitted to community hospitals, according to research published in the May 23/30 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Enhanced Atypical Lymphocytes in Natalizumab-Treated MS

TUESDAY, May 23, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (MS), natalizumab treatment is associated with enhancement of atypical lymphocytes, especially binucleated and plasmacytoid lymphocytes, according to a study published online May 8 in the International Journal of Laboratory Hematology.

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Patients With Polyneuropathy More Often Receive Opioids

TUESDAY, May 23, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Polyneuropathy is associated with increased likelihood of receiving long-term opioids, although long-term opioids do not improve functional status markers, according to a study published online May 22 in JAMA Neurology.

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Statin Therapy Found to Be of Little Benefit in Older Adults

TUESDAY, May 23, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- The benefit of pravastatin for primary prevention in older adults with moderate hyperlipidemia and hypertension is questionable, according to a study published online May 22 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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FDA Approves Actemra to Treat Giant Cell Arteritis

MONDAY, May 22, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- The injected drug Actemra (tocilizumab) has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat adults with giant cell arteritis.

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Poverty Affects Severity of Organ Damage Due to Lupus

MONDAY, May 22, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Poverty and race are tied to the health of lupus patients in the United States, according to two new studies.

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Patients Often Prescribed Futile Drugs in Last Months of Life

MONDAY, May 22, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with life-limiting illness often receive medications of questionable benefit given their remaining life span, according to a report published online May 15 in The American Journal of Medicine.

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Nine of Ten Practices Surveyed Have Dismissed Patients

MONDAY, May 22, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- The majority of medical practices have dismissed patients, according to a research letter published online May 15 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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No Link to Cognition in Diabetes Prevention Program Study

MONDAY, May 22, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- For participants in the Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) Outcomes Study (DPPOS), exposure to metformin or lifestyle intervention is not associated with cognition, according to research published online May 12 in Diabetes Care.

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Beetroot Juice Can Reduce Central Sympathetic Outflow

FRIDAY, May 19, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Acute dietary nitrate supplementation using beetroot (BR) juice can decrease central sympathetic outflow at rest and during exercise, according to a study published online May 5 in the American Journal of Physiology-Heart and Circulatory Physiology.

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Eating More Fruits, Vegetables May Lower Risk of PAD

FRIDAY, May 19, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables may help reduce the risk of peripheral artery disease (PAD), according to a study published online May 18 in Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology.

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Glucose Peaks Linked to Cognitive Decline, Dementia in Diabetes

FRIDAY, May 19, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Glucose peaks are associated with cognitive decline and dementia among individuals with diabetes, according to a study published online May 12 in Diabetes Care.

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Tips Provided to Help Physicians Plan for Retirement

THURSDAY, May 18, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians should consider their retirement and plan ahead at all stages of their career, according to an article published in Medical Economics.

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Region in Brain Associated With Fear of Uncertain Future

THURSDAY, May 18, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Individuals who have difficulty coping with the uncertainty of the future may have an unusually large striatum, according to research published online May 18 in Emotion.

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Blacks, Hispanics Less Likely to See Neurologist As Outpatient

THURSDAY, May 18, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Black and Hispanic patients are less likely than white patients to make an appointment to see a neurologist, according to a study published online May 17 in Neurology.

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Global Burden of Cardiovascular Disease Assessed

THURSDAY, May 18, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is a major global burden, despite declines in the mortality rate due to CVD in high-income and some middle-income countries, according to a study published online May 17 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Treatment in Hospital by Older Doctors Tied to Higher Mortality

WEDNESDAY, May 17, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Hospitalized patients 65 and older may face a slightly higher risk of dying within a month of their admittance when treated by an older versus younger physician, according to research published online May 16 in The BMJ.

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CDC: Slowing of Decline in Number of Uninsured Adults

WEDNESDAY, May 17, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- The decline in the number of Americans without health insurance stalled in 2016 after five years of progress, according to a U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report released Tuesday.

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Pharmacist Program Can Improve IFN-β Adherence in MS

TUESDAY, May 16, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- A pharmacist medication adherence program can improve adherence to interferon-beta (IFN-β) among patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS), according to a letter to the editor published online May 2 in the Journal of Pharmacy Practice and Research.

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Plan Suggested for Reducing Health Care Costs

TUESDAY, May 16, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Health care costs can be reduced, with a nine-step plan suggested as a starting place, according to an article published in Medical Economics.

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Life Expectancy Slighter Shorter With Parkinson's, Dementia

TUESDAY, May 16, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with degenerative brain diseases die about two years earlier compared with people who don't have these conditions, according to report published online May 15 in JAMA Neurology.

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Quinine Exposure Linked to All-Cause Mortality

MONDAY, May 15, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Long-term quinine exposure is associated with increased mortality, according to a research letter published in the May 9 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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10 Minutes of Meditation Can Up Focus for Patients With Anxiety

FRIDAY, May 12, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Ten minutes daily of mindful meditation can improve focus among patients with anxiety, according to a report published in the May issue of Consciousness and Cognition.

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Hospitals Need to Be Prepared for Ransomware Attacks

FRIDAY, May 12, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Hackers are increasingly targeting hospitals, using viruses to lock their computer systems and hold sensitive medical data and other files hostage, according to an observation piece published online May 11 in The BMJ.

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Practice Prices Linked to Some Measures of Care Coordination

THURSDAY, May 11, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- High-price practices have higher scores on certain measures of care coordination and management, but the overall relationship between higher prices and quality and efficiency of care is weak, according to a report published in the May issue of Health Affairs.

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Outpatient Wait Times Are Longer for Medicaid Recipients

THURSDAY, May 11, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Medicaid patients have slightly longer waits at medical appointments than those with private insurance, according to a report published in the May issue of Health Affairs.

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AAN: Families Should Ask About Body Cooling After Cardiac Arrest

THURSDAY, May 11, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Therapeutic hypothermia should be utilized to minimize the risk of brain damage for cardiac arrest patients in a coma, according to a new guideline published online May 10 in Neurology.

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Responsibility for Most of Dementia Care Falls to Women

WEDNESDAY, May 10, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- When it comes to the daily care of Americans with dementia, most of the responsibility is still falling on family members, with women handling the lion's share, according to a viewpoint piece published online May 8 in JAMA Neurology.

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Increases in Rates of Insured Don't Harm Continuously Insured

WEDNESDAY, May 10, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Increases in insurance coverage from 2008 to 2014 were not associated with worse access to care for continuously insured adults, according to a study published in the May issue of Health Affairs.

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Risk of Zika Infection Appears to Be Low for Pregnant Women

WEDNESDAY, May 10, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- U.S. women traveling to areas where the Zika virus is circulating might be less likely to be infected than expected, but risk remains, according to research published in the June issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

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Low Body Mass Index Not Risk Factor for Alzheimer's Disease

WEDNESDAY, May 10, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- There is no link between low body mass index (BMI) and risk of Alzheimer's disease, according to a study published online May 9 in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

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Postmarket Safety Events for 32 Percent of Novel Therapeutics

WEDNESDAY, May 10, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- From 2001 to 2010, 32 percent of novel therapeutics approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration had a postmarket safety event, according to a study published in the May 9 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Evidence-Based Medicine Course Beneficial for Critical Thinking

TUESDAY, May 9, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- An evidence-based medicine (EBM) course has some positive effect on medical student critical thinking (CT), according to a study published online April 27 in the Journal of Evidence-Based Medicine.

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Low-Dose Aspirin No Aid Against Cognitive Decline

TUESDAY, May 9, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Low-dose aspirin does not protect against cognitive decline, according to a review published April 20 in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

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Most Physician Mothers Report Perceived Discrimination

TUESDAY, May 9, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- A considerable proportion of physician mothers report perceived discrimination, according to a research letter published online May 8 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Only 10 Percent of Daily Salt Intake Comes From Shaker

TUESDAY, May 9, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Most of the salt that Americans consume comes from processed foods and restaurant meals, according to a report published in the May 9 issue of Circulation.

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Internet-Based Vestibular Rehab Beneficial for Dizziness

TUESDAY, May 9, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Internet-based vestibular rehabilitation reduces dizziness for adults aged 50 years or older, according to a study published in the May/June issue of the Annals of Family Medicine.

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FDA Approves Radicava for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

MONDAY, May 8, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- The first new drug to treat amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) in more than 20 years has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

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More Women Than Men Leaving Practice of Medicine

MONDAY, May 8, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- More women than men leave the practice of medicine, according to an article published in Medical Economics.

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Open-Label Placebos Seem to Have Positive Clinical Effect

MONDAY, May 8, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Compared with no treatment, open-label placebos seem to have a positive clinical effect, according to a review published online April 27 in the Journal of Evidence-Based Medicine.

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Even 'Social Smoking' Negatively Affects Cardiovascular Health

FRIDAY, May 5, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Social smokers have the same risk for hypertension and elevated cholesterol as regular smokers do, according to a study published online May 2 in the American Journal of Health Promotion.

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Nocebo Effect Reported for Statin Therapy Use

FRIDAY, May 5, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- The rate of muscle-related adverse event (AE) reports is increased when patients and their doctors are aware that statins are being used, according to a study published online May 2 in The Lancet.

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E-Health-Based Management of Oral Anticoagulation Tx Beneficial

FRIDAY, May 5, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Electronic-health-based management of oral anticoagulation (OAC) therapy is associated with fewer adverse events, according to a study published online April 29 in the Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis.

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Poll: Many Americans Concerned About ACA Repeal

THURSDAY, May 4, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Only one in five Americans support a repeal of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), a new HealthDay/Harris Poll reveals.

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Stair Walking Combats Fatigue Better Than Caffeine

THURSDAY, May 4, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Easy stair walking may boost energy more effectively than drinking caffeine, according to research published online recently in Physiology & Behavior.

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CMS Releases Resources to Help With Payment System

THURSDAY, May 4, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently added three new online resources to assist physicians already participating in the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) and those exploring the opportunities available.

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Lower Incidence of Chronic Illness for Centenarians

THURSDAY, May 4, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Among elderly veterans, the incidence of chronic illness is lower for centenarians than octogenarians and nonagenarians, according to a study published online April 19 in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

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Cost of Zika Virus Outbreak in U.S. Could Be Very High

THURSDAY, May 4, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- An outbreak of Zika virus infection in the United States could be very costly, according to a study published online April 27 in PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases.

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BDNF Gene Mutation May Speed Up Memory Loss in Alzheimer's

THURSDAY, May 4, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- A gene mutation appears to speed up the loss of memory and cognitive skills in patients with Alzheimer's disease, according to a study published online May 3 in Neurology.

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Vagus Nerve Stimulation Promising in Crohn's Disease

WEDNESDAY, May 3, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Vagus nerve stimulation may represent a new therapeutic option for patients with Crohn's disease (CD), according to a report published online April 18 in the Journal of Internal Medicine.

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Half of U.S. Doctors Receive Payments From Industry

WEDNESDAY, May 3, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- About half of U.S. doctors received payments from the pharmaceutical and medical device industries in 2015, amounting to $2.4 billion, and any form or amount of compensation can influence prescribing behavior, according to research published in the May 2 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, a theme issue on conflict of interest.

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New Rx for Sleeping Pills Can Up Risk of Hip Fracture

WEDNESDAY, May 3, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Older patients are at greater risk for hip fractures for two weeks after they start taking prescription sleeping pills, according to a review published online April 27 in PLOS ONE.

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CDC: Mortality Rate for Black Americans Drops 25 Percent

WEDNESDAY, May 3, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- While the overall mortality rate among black Americans dropped 25 percent between 1999 and 2015, the average life expectancy still lags behind whites by almost four years, according to research published in the May 2 early-release issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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Silent Seizures May Contribute to Alzheimer's Pathology

TUESDAY, May 2, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Undetected seizures may contribute to some symptoms associated with Alzheimer's disease, such as confusion, according to research published online May 1 in Nature Medicine.

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Optimal Cardiovascular Health in Middle Age Adds Years to Life

TUESDAY, May 2, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Individuals with optimal cardiovascular health in middle age live an average of four years longer than their peers who have at least two risk factors for cardiovascular disease, and almost five years longer free of chronic disease, according to a study published in the May 2 issue of Circulation.

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Too Few Americans Know the Warning Signs of Stroke

TUESDAY, May 2, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- About 35 percent of Americans experience symptoms of a transient ischemic attack (TIA), yet only 3 percent get immediate medical attention, according to findings from the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association.

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Social Outcomes Good for Uncomplicated Childhood Epilepsy

TUESDAY, May 2, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Young adults with uncomplicated epilepsy who remain seizure-free do as well as siblings without the disorder in education, employment, driving, and independent living, according to a study published online April 4 in Epilepsia.

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Hearing Tests May Miss Common Form of Hearing Loss

TUESDAY, May 2, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Commonly used hearing tests often fail to detect a prevalent form of inner ear damage, according to an experimental study published online recently in Frontiers in Neuroscience.

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Mechanical Thrombectomy Safe in Older Ischemic Stroke Patients

MONDAY, May 1, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- For older adults with acute ischemic stroke, endovascular therapy seems safe and efficacious, according to a study published online April 19 in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

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'Choosing Wisely' Linked to Small Drop in Back Pain Imaging

MONDAY, May 1, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- "Choosing Wisely," launched in April 2012, has contributed to a small reduction in low-value back imaging, according to a study published online April 25 in Health Affairs.

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Cold Application Decreases Fibromyalgia Pain

MONDAY, May 1, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Local cold applications on the trapezius muscles significantly decreases the pain of patients with fibromyalgia, according to a study published online April 17 in the International Journal of Rheumatic Diseases.

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Teleconcussion Assessments Are Feasible for Football Players

MONDAY, May 1, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Teleconcussion assessment with a remote neurologist assessing football players using a telemedicine robot is feasible for sideline concussion assessments, with high levels of agreement with face-to-face providers, according to a study published online March 24 in Neurology.

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Decreased Cortical Thickness Seen in Type 2 Diabetes

MONDAY, May 1, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) -- particularly those who are overweight or obese -- have decreased cortical thickness in several areas of the brain, according to research published online April 27 in Diabetologia.

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