March 2015 Briefing - Gastroenterology

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

Mobile Health App Use Continuing to Increase

TUESDAY, March 31, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The number of mobile health apps is continuing to increase and doctors are embracing this trend, with more than one-third of physicians recommending their use in the past year, according to an article published in Medical Economics.

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Opioid-Induced Constipation Significant in Pain Patients

TUESDAY, March 31, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Opioid-induced constipation (OIC) is significant among noncancer pain patients, according to a study published online March 20 in Pain Medicine.

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Small, Steady Decline in Cancer Rates in U.S. Over Past Decade

TUESDAY, March 31, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- America is making slow but steady progress against cancer, with a continuing decline in cancer deaths, according to a new report published online March 30 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. The report was coauthored by experts from the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries, the American Cancer Society, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the U.S. National Cancer Institute.

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Fecal Transplants Deemed Successful in C. difficile Tx

MONDAY, March 30, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Fecal transplants, using stool from a donor, have been successful at treating Clostridium difficile infection, researchers report online March 30 in Microbiome.

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2015 Match Sees High Proportion of Unmatched Seniors

MONDAY, March 30, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- About 6.1 percent of U.S. allopathic medical school seniors in the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP) were not placed into first-year residency positions, with a higher percentage of unmatched seniors than in 2014, according to a report published by the American Medical Association.

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Nocturnal GERD Tied to Non-Infectious Rhinitis

FRIDAY, March 27, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Nocturnal gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) appears to be a risk factor for non-infectious rhinitis (NIR), according to a study published online March 24 in Allergy.

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Less Aggressive Guidelines Issued for Pancreatic Cysts

FRIDAY, March 27, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- New, less aggressive guidelines have been developed for management of pancreatic cysts. The guidelines were published in the April issue of Gastroenterology.

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Three Alcoholic Drinks Daily Can Up Risk of Liver Cancer

THURSDAY, March 26, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- People who have three or more alcoholic drinks per day could be raising their odds for liver cancer, according to a report from a panel of experts. On the other hand, the report, from the World Cancer Research Fund International, found "strong evidence" that drinking coffee might actually lower a person's odds for liver cancer.

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Physicians Should Be Aware of Signs of Burnout

THURSDAY, March 26, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Burnout can be prevented if physicians are aware of the warning signs, according to an article published by the American Medical Association.

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FDA Warns Against Amiodarone Use With Hepatitis C Meds

WEDNESDAY, March 25, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Symptomatic bradycardia can occur when amiodarone is taken with new hepatitis C medications, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration warns.

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Binge Eating Linked to Comorbidities in Obese Adults

WEDNESDAY, March 25, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For obese adults, binge eating disorder (BED) may be associated with specific medical comorbidities, according to a study published online March 16 in the International Journal of Eating Disorders.

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Bariatric Surgery May Help Reduce Asthma Exacerbations

FRIDAY, March 20, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Bariatric surgery cuts the risk of an emergency department visit or hospitalization for asthma exacerbation in obese patients by half, according to a study published online Feb. 7 in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.

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Electronic Solutions Underway for Rx Prior Authorizations

FRIDAY, March 20, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Efforts are underway to offer technological solutions to the burdens associated with prior authorizations, according to an article published in Medical Economics.

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Live Donor Transplant Good Option in Acute Liver Failure

FRIDAY, March 20, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with acute liver failure (ALF), live donor liver transplantation (LDLT) is a valid treatment option with excellent outcomes, according to a study published online March 19 in the American Journal of Transplantation.

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Mongersen Linked to Improved Remission in Crohn's Disease

WEDNESDAY, March 18, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with Crohn's disease, treatment with an oral SMAD7 antisense oligonucleotide, mongersen, is associated with significantly higher rates of remission and clinical response versus placebo, according to a study published in the March 19 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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FDA Approves Cholbam for Rare Bile Acid Synthesis Disorders

WEDNESDAY, March 18, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Cholbam (cholic acid) capsules have been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat adults and children with bile acid synthesis disorders and peroxisomal disorders, the agency said in a news release.

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Genetic Variation Impacts Aspirin/NSAID Link to CRC Risk

TUESDAY, March 17, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Two single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) have been identified which confer differential benefit for aspirin and/or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) use in relation to colorectal cancer risk, according to a study published in the March 17 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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More Than 16 Million Americans Have Gained Coverage Under ACA

TUESDAY, March 17, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The Obama Administration reported Monday the largest drop in the number of Americans without health insurance since the Johnson administration expanded health coverage through Medicare and Medicaid 50 years ago.

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Gender-Specific Variation in Medical Specialties

MONDAY, March 16, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Medical specialties vary by gender, with obstetrics/gynecology and pediatrics dominated by female residents and specialties such as surgery, emergency medicine, and anesthesiology dominated by males, according to a report published by the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC).

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AAMC 2015 Report on Residents

HHS Wants to Help Restore Joy of Medicine

FRIDAY, March 13, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is listening to physicians and wants to address the regulatory burdens they face, according to a report published by the American Medical Association (AMA).

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Frequency of Germline TP53 Mutations ID'd in Early-Onset CRC

FRIDAY, March 13, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with early-onset colorectal cancer, germline TP53 mutations occur at a frequency of 1.3 percent, according to a study published online March 12 in JAMA Oncology.

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Getting Heard May Be Key to Getting New Job

FRIDAY, March 13, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Your voice may be the key to landing a new job, researchers report in an upcoming issue of Psychological Science.

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Coalition Calls for Increased Colorectal Cancer Screening

FRIDAY, March 13, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Boosting older adults' colorectal cancer screening rates to 80 percent by 2018 would lead to 21,000 fewer deaths from the cancer each year in the United States by 2030, according to research published March 12 in Cancer.

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FDA Updates Recs for Cleaning of Reusable Med Devices

THURSDAY, March 12, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has issued final recommendations for the cleaning and sterilization of medical devices used in invasive procedures. The updated rules, first proposed in 2011, were released in response to last month's reports of seven serious infections and two deaths at the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles, which were caused by contaminated duodenoscopes.

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Clinical Trial Data Often Not Reported in Timely Manner

THURSDAY, March 12, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Researchers are not promptly reporting the results of clinical trials to ClinicalTrials.gov, according to an article published in the March 12 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Physicians Should Plan Exit Strategy in Advance

WEDNESDAY, March 11, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians should begin planning their exit strategy three to five years in advance, according to the American Medical Association.

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Persistent EHR Nonadoption Could Mean Lower Payment

WEDNESDAY, March 11, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Persistent nonadopters of electronic health records (EHRs) tend to be older, and are employed in smaller practices, according to a letter published in the March 3 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Frustrated by Regulations, Doctors Increasingly Miserable

WEDNESDAY, March 11, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The nationwide Physician Misery Index is 3.7 out of 5, with the vast majority of physicians reporting that the business and regulation of health care has worsened the practice of medicine, according to a report published by Geneia.

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AAMC: Significant Shortfall of Physicians Projected for 2025

TUESDAY, March 10, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The expected shortfall of physicians is projected to reach about 46,000 to 90,000 by 2025, according to a study conducted by IHS Inc. for the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC).

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Limited Evidence Supporting Herbal Meds in GI Disorders

TUESDAY, March 10, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Limited evidence supports use of herbal remedies in gastrointestinal disorders, and the lack of quality control must be considered, according to research published in the March issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

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Vegetarian Diet Tied to Reduced Risk of Colorectal Cancer

MONDAY, March 9, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- A vegetarian diet might cut the risk of colorectal cancer by 20 percent, according to new research. For fish-eating vegetarians, the protective link is even stronger, according to a study published online March 9 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Educational Intervention Can Cut Inappropriate PPI Prescriptions

MONDAY, March 9, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- A monthly educational intervention paired with a web-based quality improvement tool is feasible for increasing the proportion of inappropriate proton pump inhibitor (PPI) prescriptions discontinued at hospital discharge, according to a study published online Feb. 24 in the Journal of Hospital Medicine.

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Most Cancer Patients Involve Family in Treatment Decisions

FRIDAY, March 6, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Most lung and colorectal cancer patients involve family members in treatment decisions, with substantial variation by race/ethnicity and language, according to a study published online Feb. 23 in Cancer.

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Changes Being Made to Med School Applicant Assessment

FRIDAY, March 6, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- In accordance with the changes in graduate medical education to better prepare doctors for a changing health care system, changes are being made to medical school applicant evaluation, according to an article published Feb. 19 by the American Medical Association (AMA).

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Confidence Gap Between Male and Female Med Students

FRIDAY, March 6, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Female medical students perform at the same or higher level as men, but they lack confidence compared with men, according to a letter published in the March 3 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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National Hospital Rating Systems Rarely in Agreement

FRIDAY, March 6, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- National hospital rating systems are rarely in agreement, according to a study published in the March issue of Health Affairs.

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FDA Launches First App to Identify Drug Shortages

THURSDAY, March 5, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- A mobile phone application (app) has been released to identify current drug shortages, resolved shortages, or discontinuations of drug products, according to a press release published by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

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Vaccine May Provide Some Protection From Hepatitis E

THURSDAY, March 5, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- A vaccine for hepatitis E provides protection from the virus for at least 4.5 years, according to new research. The report was published in the March 5 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Rush University Adds Patient Scores to Doctor Profiles

WEDNESDAY, March 4, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Rush University Medical Center's website has started adding the results of patient surveys to individual physician profiles, according to a report published by the medical center.

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HPV-16 Tied to Improved Survival in Advanced Esophageal Cancer

WEDNESDAY, March 4, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with advanced-stage esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC), human papillomavirus (HPV)-16 infection is associated with improved survival and treatment response, according to a study published online Feb. 24 in the Journal of Digestive Diseases.

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Research Measures Perceptions of Physician Compassion

TUESDAY, March 3, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Patients prefer physicians who convey a more optimistic message, and perceive in them a higher level of compassion, according to a study published online Feb. 26 in JAMA Oncology.

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Resistance to Common Antimicrobials Increasing

TUESDAY, March 3, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Resistance to commonly used antimicrobials is increasing in Salmonella and Campylobacter, according to a report published Feb. 26 by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).

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Acetaminophen Risks May Be Underestimated

TUESDAY, March 3, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Acetaminophen may not be as safe as previously thought, with larger doses and long-term use linked to increased risk of health problems, a new report contends. The findings were published online March 2 in the Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases.

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Tracking Growth Can Facilitate Earlier ID of Celiac in Children

MONDAY, March 2, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Growth monitoring programs may help identify children with celiac disease, according to a new study published in the March issue of JAMA Pediatrics.

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High Prevalence of HCV in Baby Boomers Presenting to ER

MONDAY, March 2, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- The prevalence of unrecognized chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) is high among baby boomers presenting to the emergency department, according to a study published online Jan. 28 in Hepatology.

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Hospital Design Has Little Effect on Patient Satisfaction

MONDAY, March 2, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Hospital design has little effect on patient satisfaction, according to a study published online Feb. 5 in the Journal of Hospital Medicine.

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