April 2015 Briefing - Hematology & Oncology

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Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Hematology & Oncology for April 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.

Lack of Adequate Sunlight May Up Risk of Pancreatic Cancer

THURSDAY, April 30, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- People who live in regions with low sunlight may have a higher risk of pancreatic cancer, possibly because they don't get enough vitamin D from the sun, new research suggests. The study appears online April 30 in the Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

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Study Looks at Variability in Measures of Breast Density

THURSDAY, April 30, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Volpara and Quantra algorithms have the lowest variability in repeated measures of breast density, according to a study published in the May issue of Radiology.

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Two New Lung Cancer Meds Show Promise in Advanced Disease

THURSDAY, April 30, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Two experimental drugs may help patients whose lung cancer has become resistant to the latest available treatments, according to separate studies published in the April 30 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Colon Cancer Risk Markers Appear Within Two Weeks of Diet Change

WEDNESDAY, April 29, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Westernization of the diet induces changes in biomarkers of colon cancer risk within two weeks, according to research published online April 28 in Nature Communications.

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Breastfeeding Linked to Better Breast Cancer Outcomes for Mom

WEDNESDAY, April 29, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Women who breastfeed their babies and later develop breast cancer are less likely to have the cancer return or be terminal than women who do not breastfeed, new research shows. The study was published online April 28 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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Hydroxyurea Underutilized for Patients With Sickle Cell

WEDNESDAY, April 29, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Less than one-quarter of sickle cell anemia (SCA) patients who should have been taking hydroxyurea within a year of their last pain crisis actually were taking the medication, according to research from a national database. These findings were published in a research letter in the April 28 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Physician Compensation Up for Most Specialties

TUESDAY, April 28, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Physician compensation has gone up for almost all specialties, according to a 2015 report published by Medscape.

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Capsule Colonoscopy Deemed 'Adequate' Alternative

TUESDAY, April 28, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- In an average-risk screening population, capsule colonoscopy seems adequate for patients who cannot undergo colonoscopy or who had incomplete colonoscopies, although additional research is needed to improve capsule detection, according to a study published in the May issue of Gastroenterology.

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CDC: Surveillance System Can Help Reduce Health Care Injuries

TUESDAY, April 28, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- A surveillance system for health care facilities can be used to identify and help reduce the number of preventable injuries among health care personnel, according to research published in the April 24 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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Higher CV Risks Seen for Hodgkin's Lymphoma Survivors

TUESDAY, April 28, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians and patients should be aware of the persistently increased risk of cardiovascular diseases throughout life after Hodgkin's lymphoma, according to a report published online April 27 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Over Half of Middle-Age, Older Americans Take Daily Aspirin

MONDAY, April 27, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Slightly more than half of middle-aged adults and seniors in the United States take aspirin daily, with most taking it for primary prevention, according to survey findings published in the May issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

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CRC Screening Among Older Adults Often Inappropriate

FRIDAY, April 24, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Older adults with limited life expectancy (LE) frequently receive colorectal cancer (CRC) screening, according to a study published in the April issue of the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

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Two Novel Technologies Promising in Cancer Care

FRIDAY, April 24, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Two new devices may eventually lead to more accurate, less toxic methods of predicting how well a specific cancer drug might work on an individual's cancer, researchers report. Findings from both studies were published in the April 22 issue of Science Translational Medicine.

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Oophorectomy Linked to Better Survival in BRCA1 Breast Cancer

THURSDAY, April 23, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Oophorectomy is associated with a decrease in mortality in women with breast cancer and a BRCA1 mutation, and women with estrogen receptor-negative breast cancer and a BRCA1 mutation should undergo the procedure shortly after diagnosis, according to research published online April 23 in JAMA Oncology.

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Self-Reported Health Predicts Survival in Breast Cancer

THURSDAY, April 23, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For older women with breast cancer, low self-rated health (SRH) and limited walking ability predict worse all-cause survival at five and 10 years, according to a study published in the April issue of the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

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Post-Chemo Radiation May Not Be Needed in Early Hodgkin's

THURSDAY, April 23, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with early Hodgkin's lymphoma who have negative findings on positron-emission tomography (PET) after three cycles of chemotherapy, progression-free survival is similar with or without further radiation, according to a study published in the April 23 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Gene Tx May Benefit Children, Teens With Wiskott-Aldrich Sx

THURSDAY, April 23, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Gene therapy may benefit children and teens with Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome, a rare immunodeficiency caused by mutations in the WAS gene, according to a small new study published in the April 21 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, a theme issue on child health.

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Second Primaries for Over 25% With Metastatic Prostate Cancer

THURSDAY, April 23, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- More than one-quarter of patients with metastatic prostate cancer present with a synchronous second primary malignancy, according to a review published in the April issue of The Journal of Urology.

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ACP Supports Ban on Flavoring, Ads for E-Cigarettes

WEDNESDAY, April 22, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration should ban flavorings and television advertisements for e-cigarettes, according to a position paper released by the American College of Physicians (ACP) and published in the April 21 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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EHR Data Mining Helps With Quality Improvement

WEDNESDAY, April 22, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Electronic health records (EHRs) are a valuable source of data that can be mined to help practices with quality improvement performance, according to a study published in Medical Economics.

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Review Examines Salpingectomy Alone for Cutting Ovarian CA Risk

WEDNESDAY, April 22, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Salpingectomy alone may be a risk management option for women at hereditary risk of ovarian cancer, according to a review published in the May issue of Cancer Prevention Research.

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EHR Decision Support Ups Radiologic Test Appropriateness

TUESDAY, April 21, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Computerized clinical decision-support (CCDS) capabilities of electronic health records may improve appropriate use of diagnostic radiologic test ordering and reduce test use, according to a review published in the April 21 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Under and Over Imaging Suspected in Prostate CA Care

TUESDAY, April 21, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For men with nonmetastatic (M0) castration resistant prostate cancer who have a negative bone scan after diagnosis, factors associated with a second bone scan include higher prostate-specific antigen (PSA), shorter PSA doubling time, and faster PSA velocity; however, there may be under imaging in those at high risk and over imaging in those at low risk, according to a study published in the April issue of the The Journal of Urology.

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USPSTF Revisits Mammography Guidelines

TUESDAY, April 21, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Women in their 40s should talk with their doctors and then decide for themselves whether they need regular mammograms to screen for breast cancer before age 50, according to draft U.S. federal health guidelines.

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Regular Walking Can Boost Quality of Life With Prostate CA

TUESDAY, April 21, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Engaging in a regular walking regimen can improve well-being for men with prostate cancer, according to new research published online April 16 in the Journal of Cancer Survivorship: Research and Practice.

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Guidance Offered for Managing Conflict With Patients

MONDAY, April 20, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Good communication is key to managing conflict with patients, according to an article published April 1 in Medical Economics.

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Gene Variation May Impact Smoking Cessation Efforts

MONDAY, April 20, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- A gene variation associated with smoking longer and getting lung cancer at a younger age has been identified by researchers. The study was published in the May issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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Obesity Raises Prostate Cancer Risk Even Higher for Black Men

MONDAY, April 20, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Compared to white men, black men appear to have up to four-fold greater risk of developing prostate cancer as their body mass index (BMI) increases, according to a study published online April 16 in JAMA Oncology.

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HLA Expression Tied to Penile Cancer Outcomes

MONDAY, April 20, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Human leukocyte antigen (HLA) expression appears to be tied to clinical outcomes in penile cancer, according to a study published in the April issue of The Journal of Urology.

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Clinician-Referred Exercise Program Beneficial in Prostate CA

FRIDAY, April 17, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For men with prostate cancer, clinician referral to and participation in an exercise program has a positive impact on mental health, according to a study published online April 15 in Cancer.

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Review Compares Shave, Punch Biopsy Methods

FRIDAY, April 17, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For clinically atypical pigmented lesions, lesion size and morphology should be considered before deciding on shave or punch biopsy, according to a research letter published online April 9 in the British Journal of Dermatology.

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Suboptimal Prescribing Attitudes Could Signal Personal Distress

FRIDAY, April 17, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Medical students in personal distress may be more likely to have suboptimal attitudes about self-prescribing and personal responsibility for reporting impaired colleagues, according to a study published in the April issue of Academic Medicine.

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Combination Approach Could Help Rule Out PE in Primary Care

FRIDAY, April 10, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- To help rule out pulmonary embolism, general practitioners (GPs) can use the Wells rule for pulmonary embolism in combination with either a qualitative point-of-care (POC) D-dimer test or a quantitative D-dimer test, according to a study published online April 6 in the Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis.

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Call for Gene Tests in Cancer to Include Normal Tissue

THURSDAY, April 16, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- If genetic tests are only done on cancer tissue, as many as half of patients may not receive the most appropriate treatment for their cancer, according to research published in the April 15 issue of Science Translational Medicine.

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Medicare Spending Down in Year One of Pioneer ACO

THURSDAY, April 16, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Medicare spending is down in year one of the Pioneer accountable care organization (ACO) program, according to a study published online April 15 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Ethical Implications for Looking Up Applicants on Facebook

THURSDAY, April 16, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Looking up students on Facebook and other social networking sites (SNS) is associated with ethical concerns, according to a perspective piece published in the March issue of the Journal of Graduate Medical Education.

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AMA Announces End of Sustainable Growth Rate Formula

WEDNESDAY, April 15, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Recently adopted legislation has repealed the sustainable growth rate (SGR) formula, according to a report published by the American Medical Association (AMA).

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Statin Use Inversely Linked to Pancreatic Cancer Risk

WEDNESDAY, April 15, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Statin use is inversely associated with pancreatic cancer risk, with evidence of a sex-specific risk reduction, according to a study published in the April 15 issue of Cancer.

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Survey Looks at Patient Attitudes Regarding Informed Consent

WEDNESDAY, April 15, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Most U.S. adults would prefer to be asked for permission to participate in studies assessing usual medical practices, according to a study published online April 14 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Nanotechnology Breath Test Could Help ID Gastric CA Earlier

TUESDAY, April 14, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- A novel technology senses small changes in the levels of particular compounds in exhaled breath, and accurately identifies changes that signal the development of gastric cancer, according to a study published online April 13 in Gut.

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Pharmacist Support Boosts Anticoagulation Adherence

TUESDAY, April 14, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The intervention of a local pharmacist could help improve adherence to newer anticoagulants, according to research published in the April 14 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Security Breaches of Health Records Up Over Past Decade

TUESDAY, April 14, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Breaches in data security exposed more than 29 million health records to potential criminal misuse between 2010 and 2013, according to a new study. Security breaches involving hacking have nearly doubled in recent years, rising to 8.7 percent in 2013 compared with 4.7 percent in 2010, according to the study, published as a research letter in the April 14 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Placebo Response May Depend on Individual DNA

TUESDAY, April 14, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The strength of the placebo effect may depend on particular DNA, according to a report published online April 13 in Trends in Molecular Medicine.

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Aspirin Use Not Found to Benefit Prostate Cancer Mortality

TUESDAY, April 14, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Aspirin use does not appear to reduce the risk of mortality associated with prostate cancer, according to research published in the April issue of The Journal of Urology.

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Teledermatology Implications for Incidental Skin CA Detection

TUESDAY, April 14, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- An in-person skin examination is important for detection of incidentally-identified skin malignancies, according to a review published in the April issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

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HPV4 Vaccine Cost-Effective for OPC Prevention in Teen Boys

MONDAY, April 13, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The quadrivalent human papillomavirus (HPV4) vaccine appears to be cost-effective for the prevention of oropharyngeal cancer (OPC) among 12-year-old males, according to a study published online April 13 in Cancer.

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Repeat Prostate Biopsy Rounds Yield Cancer Cases

MONDAY, April 13, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Among a group of men with an initial negative prostate biopsy, clinically significant cancer is still found in subsequent repeat sampling rounds, according to a study published in the April issue of The Journal of Urology.

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Most Hospitalists Would Not Order Inpatient Mammography

MONDAY, April 13, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Most hospitalists feel that they should not be involved in breast cancer screening, according to a study published in the April issue of the Journal of Hospital Medicine.

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Medical Debt Burden Higher in Texas, Florida

FRIDAY, April 10, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Significantly more adults in Florida and Texas struggle to pay medical bills or pay off medical debt over time compared with residents of New York and California, according to a new Commonwealth Fund report released Friday.

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Many Doctors Haven't Started Dealing With ICD-10 Revision

FRIDAY, April 10, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Most physicians have barely begun to deal with issues relating to documentation associated with the transition to the International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision (ICD-10), according to an article published in Medical Economics.

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Art Program Hones Med Students' Visual Observation Skills

FRIDAY, April 10, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- An innovative interdisciplinary program, Art Rounds, is effective for improving medical and nursing students' physical observation skills, according to a study published in the April issue of the Journal of Nursing Education.

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Statin Use Found Beneficial in Hepatitis C Treatment

FRIDAY, April 10, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with hepatitis C virus (HCV), statin therapy is associated with improved virologic response rates, as well as decreased liver fibrosis progression and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) incidence, according to a study published online April 6 in Hepatology.

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Cases of Melanoma Declining in U.S. Children

THURSDAY, April 9, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The incidence of melanoma is falling among American children, according to a new study published online April 9 in The Journal of Pediatrics.

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High Costs for False-Positive Mammograms, Overdiagnosis

THURSDAY, April 9, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Mammography screening is associated with considerable costs linked to false-positive mammograms and breast cancer overdiagnosis, with national expenditure estimated at $4 billion annually, according to a study published in the April issue of Health Affairs.

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Periocular Basal Cell Carcinomas Can Grow Rapidly

THURSDAY, April 9, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Periocular basal cell carcinomas (pBCCs) have a mean growth rate of 11.2 mm² every 30 days, according to a study published in the April issue of the British Journal of Dermatology.

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Many Head and Neck Cancer Survivors Don't Return to Work

THURSDAY, April 9, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Many head and neck cancer survivors do not return to work, according to a study published in the April issue of Head & Neck.

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MRI Could Be Useful Pancreatic Cancer Screen for High-Risk

WEDNESDAY, April 8, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to screen people at high genetic risk for pancreatic cancer might help spot tumors early, according to new research. The findings were published online April 8 in JAMA Surgery.

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Medicare Beneficiaries With Melanoma May Face Tx Delay

WEDNESDAY, April 8, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Approximately 20 percent of Medicare patients with melanoma face delays in getting surgical treatment, according to a new study published online April 8 in JAMA Dermatology.

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Higher Costs of Cancer Care Seen for Uninsured Patients

WEDNESDAY, April 8, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Uninsured patients may be charged anywhere from two to 43 times what private insurance plans or Medicare pay for chemotherapy medications, a new study estimates. Researchers said the findings, reported in the April issue of Health Affairs, highlight a fundamental inequity.

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Limited Time Available to Review Sunshine Act Data

WEDNESDAY, April 8, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians have only 45 days to review and dispute reports regarding their financial ties to drug and medical device manufacturers reported under the Physician Payments Sunshine Act, according to the American Medical Association (AMA).

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Breast, Ovarian CA Risk Varies With BRCA Mutation Location

TUESDAY, April 7, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The risk of breast and ovarian cancer varies with the type and location of BRCA1/2 mutations, according to a study published in the April 7 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Breast CA Patients Want, but May Not Get, Genetic Risk Discussion

TUESDAY, April 7, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Although many women with breast cancer are concerned about their genetic risk for other cancers -- as well as their relatives' risk for breast cancer -- almost half of these patients don't get information about genetic testing, according to a study published online April 6 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Case Report of Food Allergy Acquired Via Blood Transfusion

TUESDAY, April 7, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The case of an 8-year-old Canadian boy suggests that it's possible, but still rare, for children to develop food allergies from blood transfusions. The report was published in the April 7 issue of CMAJ, the journal of the Canadian Medical Association.

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More Expensive Breast Cancer Tx Tied to Improved Survival

TUESDAY, April 7, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- More expensive breast cancer treatments are linked to a greater chance of survival, new research suggests. The study was published in the April issue of Health Affairs.

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Med Students, Residents Rarely Perform Stethoscope Hygiene

TUESDAY, April 7, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Stethoscope hygiene is rarely performed by trainee physicians, according to a research letter published online April 2 in the Journal of Hospital Medicine.

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Half of Colorectal Cancer Survivors Have Continued Pain

MONDAY, April 6, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Almost half of colorectal cancer (CRC) survivors with pain interference (PI) during the initial phase of care have continued PI post-treatment, according to a study published online March 20 in Pain Medicine.

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Clinical Practice Changing for Node Lymph Mgmt in Breast CA

FRIDAY, April 3, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Women with breast cancer undergoing lumpectomy and sentinel node biopsy (SNB) may now be less likely to then have completion axillary lymph node dissection (ALND), according to research published online March 25 in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons.

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Article Highlights Legal Issues Linked to Physician Extenders

FRIDAY, April 3, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The use of physician extenders (PEs; mainly physician assistants and nurse practitioners) may bring added legal risks to a practice, according to an article published in Medical Economics.

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Early Research Proving Hopeful for Melanoma Vaccine

FRIDAY, April 3, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- A highly personalized vaccine can spur an immune response in people with advanced melanoma, according to a study published online April 2 in Science.

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Fish Oil Could Possibly Interfere With Chemotherapy

THURSDAY, April 2, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Fish oil supplements, and even certain fish, may hinder the effectiveness of chemotherapy, according to new research published online April 2 in JAMA Oncology.

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Women Overweight in Youth May Face Higher CRC Risk

THURSDAY, April 2, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Women who were overweight as children and teens may have a greater risk of colorectal cancer (CRC), no matter what their current weight, a new study cautions. The findings were published in the April issue of Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.

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Laparoscopic Sx Achieves Similar Survival Rates in Rectal Cancer

THURSDAY, April 2, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with localized rectal cancer may achieve similar survival rates by having minimally invasive laparoscopic surgery, instead of more invasive open surgery, according to new research published in the April 2 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Most Childhood CA Survivors Battle Chronic Conditions

THURSDAY, April 2, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- About 70 percent of adults who survived cancer in childhood have a mild or moderate chronic condition, and nearly one-third have a severe, disabling, or life-threatening condition, according to a new study published in the April issue of Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.

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Patients May Be Modifying Meds Due to Trouble Swallowing

THURSDAY, April 2, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Some patients experience difficulties swallowing and modify medication dosage forms, without necessarily consulting health professionals, according to research published in the March issue of the Journal of Pharmacy Practice and Research.

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Recommendations Issued for Prevention of Ovarian Cancer

THURSDAY, April 2, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Recommendations for prevention of ovarian cancer include oral contraceptive use and tubal sterilization, as well as genetic counseling and testing for women from high-risk families, according to a report from the Society of Gynecologic Oncology published online March 27 in Cancer.

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MED15 Involved in Head and Neck Squamous Cell Carcinoma

THURSDAY, April 2, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The mediator subunit MED15 appears to be involved in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC), according to a study published in the April issue of The American Journal of Pathology.

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Legal Issues of Removing Patient From Practice Explored

WEDNESDAY, April 1, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The legal and ethical responsibilities of removing a patient from practice are discussed in an article published March 16 in Medical Economics.

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Metformin Use Associated With Less CRC Risk in U.S. Population

WEDNESDAY, April 1, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with diabetes in the United States, metformin use is associated with reduced risk of developing colorectal cancer (CRC), according to a study published in the April 1 issue of Cancer.

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