A review in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, based on four studies with 5,789 older adults, found adherence to a Mediterranean diet was linked to a reduced risk of incident frailty. Researchers called for additional studies to confirm the results.
The CDC reported that influenza was widespread in 49 states during the week ending Jan. 6, with flu hospitalizations nearly twice the level seen the previous week and seven additional pediatric deaths reported, bringing the season's total to 20. Flu activity may already have peaked, but 11 to 13 weeks remain in the season, said Dr. Daniel Jernigan, director of the CDC's influenza division.
Data breach concerns remain high among chief information security officers, with 67% saying their companies will be breached or attacked in 2018, an Opus Global survey has found. A majority of respondents say they are more concerned about breaches than they were a year earlier, while also expressing worries over a "lack of competent in-house staff" and "careless employees."
About 43,000 patients at Coplin Health Systems in Elizabeth, W.Va., are being notified that their personal information may be compromised after a hospital laptop was stolen from an employee's car in November. The computer could contain documents with data such as health information, dates of birth, Social Security numbers, addresses and financial information.
Each five-years-longer duration of diabetes and prediabetes in adulthood was associated with a 1.15 and 1.07 higher hazard ratio, respectively, for the presence of coronary artery calcified plaque in middle age, according to a study in Diabetes Care. Researchers used a cohort of 3,628 white and black adults, ages 18 to 30, and found that diabetes and prediabetes duration correlated with early diastolic relaxation and worse subclinical function, while diabetes duration was associated with a higher diastolic filling pressure.
Medical practices that want to better meet the needs of patients should examine their procedures, writes consultant Owen Dahl, including redundant questions on paperwork, overscheduling, lunchtime availability and proper screening for genuine emergencies. Dahl suggests clinicians evaluate their own visits to medical offices to see what works and what doesn't from the patient perspective.
The THA Smart Ribbon program, developed by the Texas Hospital Association, provides physicians with real-time risk and cost data for patients, such as medications and lab results, via a ribbon image applied to a hospital's EMR system. The program allowed Baylor Scott & White Medical Center-Temple to reduce unnecessary care and testing, said Chief Medical Officer Dr. Stephen Sibbitt.
Corti, an artificially intelligent assistant that uses speech-recognition software and machine learning to look for nonverbal clues, could help emergency dispatchers diagnose cardiac arrest over the phone. A small-scale study found that Corti was able to recognize calls reporting cardiac arrest in 95% of cases, compared with 73% for trained dispatchers.
CDC researchers found that 34.7% of pregnant women prescribed an antibiotic for a urinary tract infection received nitrofurantoin and 7.6% were given trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole, even though the drugs have been associated with an elevated risk of birth defects when taken during the first trimester. Clinicians said the findings, discussed in the agency's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, suggest health care providers may not all be aware of American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists guidelines advising use of these antibiotics only as a last resort treatment during early pregnancy.
AstraZeneca's Lynparza, or olaparib, has been approved by the FDA to treat patients with metastatic HER2-negative breast cancer whose malignancy involves mutations in the BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes. The drug, which was previously approved for treatment of advanced ovarian cancer, is the first PARP inhibitor to win FDA approval against breast cancer.
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