December 2014 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 December 2014. 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 Identifies Top 10 Issues That Affected Docs in 2014

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 31, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The top 10 issues that affected physicians in 2014 include many regulatory issues relating to Medicare and data release, as well as health issues such as overprescribing of antibiotics and the Ebola crisis, according to a report published by the American Medical Association (AMA).

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Gender Influences Opioid-Related Adverse Effects in Children

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 31, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For children undergoing tonsillectomy, sex influences opioid-related adverse effects, according to a study published online Dec. 17 in Pain Medicine.

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Ebola, ACA, VA Scandal Top U.S. Health News for 2014

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 31, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- It started as a deadly but little-known outbreak in West Africa, but the lethal and unchecked spread of the Ebola virus dominated U.S. headlines for much of 2014, making it one of the year's top health news features.

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Pre-Op Depression Tied to Fewer Gains in QOL After Spinal Surgery

TUESDAY, Dec. 30, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For patients undergoing lumbar decompression or posterior cervical fusion (PCF), preoperative depression is associated with lower improvements in postoperative quality of life (QOL), according to two studies published in the Jan. 1 issue of The Spine Journal.

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2015 Medicare Fee Schedule Offers Payment for Chronic Care

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The 2015 Medicare Fee Schedule includes a Current Procedural Terminology Code that pays for clinical staff time for developing and implementing a care plan for patients with two or more chronic conditions, according to an article published Dec. 18 in Medical Economics.

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Tips Offered to Docs, Spouses for Maintaining Happy Marriage

FRIDAY, Dec. 19, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Simple tips can help physicians and their spouses maintain marital happiness, according to an article published in the American Medical Association (AMA) Alliance magazine Physician Family.

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Drug Interaction Identified for Ondansetron, Tramadol

THURSDAY, Dec. 18, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- In the early postoperative period, ondansetron is associated with increased requirements for tramadol consumption, according to a review and meta-analysis published online Dec. 10 in Anaesthesia.

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Medical Marijuana Helpful for Cancer-Linked Symptoms

THURSDAY, Dec. 18, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Cannabis and cannabinoid pharmaceuticals can be helpful for nausea and vomiting, pain, and weight loss associated with cancer, according to research published online Dec. 10 in CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians.

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Digital Self-Scheduling Set to Increase Considerably by 2019

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 17, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Digital self-scheduling is set to increase considerably in the next five years, according to a report published by Accenture.

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Challenges ID'd in Development of the Physician Compare Website

TUESDAY, Dec. 16, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), information must be made available to allow the public to compare physicians, although there are considerable challenges surrounding the development of the physician performance website, Physician Compare. These challenges are addressed in a health policy brief published online Dec. 11 in Health Affairs.

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Support for Electronic Health Information Varies With Use

TUESDAY, Dec. 16, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Consent and purpose are important for public support of secondary uses of electronic health information, according to a study published in the Dec. 16 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Physicians Reminded of Ethical Obligations Regarding Torture

TUESDAY, Dec. 16, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- With the issuing of the new U.S. Senate report on interrogations, the American Medical Association (AMA) is reminding physicians of their ethical obligations relating to torture and interrogation.

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Physicians Should Scrutinize Job Offers Before Accepting

MONDAY, Dec. 15, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians should scrutinize job offers and pay attention to specific issues before accepting a job, according to an article published Dec. 3 in Medical Economics.

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Webcast Scheduled to Discuss Maintenance of Certification

MONDAY, Dec. 15, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- New data relating to Maintenance of Certification (MOC) will be discussed in a free webcast to be held Dec. 17 by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).

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Pre-Op Opioid Use Tied to Higher Post-Op Dependence

MONDAY, Dec. 15, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Greater preoperative opioid use predicts increased immediate postoperative opioid demand and decreased incidence of postoperative opioid independence among spine surgery patients, according to a study published in the Dec. 1 issue of Spine.

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No Higher Risk of Breast Cancer for Women With Migraines

MONDAY, Dec. 15, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Migraine headaches do not raise the risk for breast cancer, according to research published online Dec. 12 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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Tips Offered for Docs to Manage Their Online Reputation

FRIDAY, Dec. 12, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians can manage their online reputation, according to a report from the American Medical Association (AMA).

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Cervical Discectomy Without Fusion Cost-Effective Strategy

FRIDAY, Dec. 12, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Anterior cervical discectomy without fusion (ACD) may be the most effective and cost-effective alternative for the treatment of one-level cervical disc disease, according to research published in the Dec. 1 issue of Spine.

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Post-Bariatric Surgery Weight Loss May Ease Knee Pain

FRIDAY, Dec. 12, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Current evidence, though limited, suggests that bariatric surgery with subsequent marked weight loss may reduce knee complaints in morbidly obese adults, according to research published online Dec. 8 in Obesity Reviews.

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More Students Enrolling in U.S. Medical Schools

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 10, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- More students are enrolling in medical schools, and enrollees are more diverse than before, according to a report from the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) published by the American Medical Association (AMA).

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More Docs, Patients Not Speaking Same Language

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 10, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- People applying to become medical residents in the United States speak a wide range of non-English languages, but many aren't the languages spoken by patients with limited English skills, according to a research letter published in the Dec. 10 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, a theme issue on medical education.

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Exercise Eases Arthralgia Caused by Aromatase Inhibitors

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 10, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Exercise helps relieve aromatase inhibitor (AI)-induced pain in breast cancer survivors, according to research published online Dec. 1 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Work-Hour Restrictions Have Not Improved Outcomes

TUESDAY, Dec. 9, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Reducing medical residents' work hours hasn't improved mortality rates, hospital readmission rates, or outcomes of surgery, according to two new studies published in the Dec. 10 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, a theme issue on medical education.

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Docs Trained in High-Cost Areas Practice More Costly Medicine

TUESDAY, Dec. 9, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Doctors who were trained in high-cost areas of the United States may be more likely to practice expensive medicine, a new study suggests; however, that effect gradually decreases over time. The study was published in the Dec. 10 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, a theme issue on medical education.

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Higher Paid Docs Earn More Money From More Procedures

TUESDAY, Dec. 9, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- High-income doctors make more money by ordering more procedures for each patient rather than by seeing more patients, according to an analysis of 2012 Medicare data published in a research letter Dec. 8 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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U.S. Doctors Cutting Back on Opioid Prescriptions

TUESDAY, Dec. 9, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Nine out of 10 primary care doctors in the United States are concerned about prescription drug abuse in their communities, and nearly half of the physicians surveyed said they were less likely to prescribe opioids than they were a year ago, according to a research letter published online Dec. 8 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Postural Sway Mediated by Low Back Pain, Not Fear of Pain

TUESDAY, Dec. 9, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Changes in postural sway are caused by low back pain (LBP), but not pain-related fear, indicating that pain control should be a treatment component in the rehabilitation process to restore optimal postural control, according to a study published in the Dec. 1 issue of Spine.

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Tramadol Use May Up Risk of Hospitalization for Hypoglycemia

TUESDAY, Dec. 9, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Tramadol use is associated with an increased risk of hypoglycemia requiring hospitalization, especially in the first 30 days of use, according to a study published online Dec. 8 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Complication Rate Up for Elderly Undergoing Spinal Fusion

MONDAY, Dec. 8, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Patients aged 65 years or older have a higher likelihood of complications when undergoing anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF), compared to younger patients, according to research published in the Dec. 1 issue of Spine.

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Vigorous Back Massage Can Cause Spinal Injury

FRIDAY, Dec. 5, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Traumatic spinal subdural hematoma can occur after vigorous back massage, according to a case study published in the Dec. 1 issue of Spine.

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AMA: Social Determinants of Health to Be Taught in Med School

THURSDAY, Dec. 4, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A new policy implemented by the American Medical Association (AMA) supports integrating more training on the social determinants of health into undergraduate medical education, according to a report published by the AMA.

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Recommendations for Managing Pain in Inflammatory Arthritis

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 3, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Recommendations have been developed for the management of pain in adults with optimally treated inflammatory arthritis, according to an article published in the September issue of the International Journal of Rheumatic Diseases.

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Preoperative Narcotic Use Doesn't Worsen Surgical Outcomes

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 3, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For patients undergoing primary spinal deformity surgery, postoperative outcomes are improved for those taking narcotics preoperatively and for those not taking narcotics, according to a study published in the Dec. 1 issue of The Spine Journal.

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Too Much Patient Care Tied to Faculty Members' Intent to Leave

TUESDAY, Dec. 2, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Spending "far too much/too much" time/effort on patient care is associated with increased intent to leave the institution, according to research published in Academic Medicine.

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CDC: Fatal Overdoses From Rx Opioids Have Tripled in U.S.

TUESDAY, Dec. 2, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Fatal overdoses involving opioid analgesics have tripled over the past decade, a new report shows. Deaths from heroin also nearly tripled between 1999 and 2012, according to the report released Tuesday by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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Doctor Discusses Ways to Keep Morale in Medicine High

MONDAY, Dec. 1, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Despite the many frustrations for doctors in medical practice, there are ways to keep morale high, according to an article published Nov. 20 in Medical Economics.

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Many Physicians Report Their Incomes Have Plateaued

MONDAY, Dec. 1, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Many physicians report that their personal income has not changed since last year, according to the results of the Physicians Practice 2014 Physicians Compensation Survey.

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Patient-Tailored Exercises Don't Improve Low Back Pain Outcomes

MONDAY, Dec. 1, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Patient-matched treatment does not improve outcomes for individuals with chronic, recurrent low back pain (LBP), according to a study published in the Dec. 1 issue of The Spine Journal.

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