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January 2013 Briefing - Hematology & Oncology

Friday, February 1, 2013 (Last Updated: 02/04/2013)

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Hematology & Oncology for January 2013. 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.

Overuse of Surveillance Colonoscopy After Resection

THURSDAY, Jan. 31 (HealthDay News) -- Approximately one-third of patients with normal results on their first and second colonoscopies after undergoing curative resection for colorectal cancer undergo subsequent surveillance colonoscopies within two years, which is earlier than recommended by current guidelines, according to research published in the January issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

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Intervention Helps Mothers of Children Diagnosed With Cancer

THURSDAY, Jan. 31 (HealthDay News) -- Compared with a nondirective support intervention, mothers of children recently diagnosed with cancer who participate in the Bright IDEAS problem-solving skills training (PSST) intervention experience beneficial effects on mood, anxiety, and posttraumatic stress, which continue after the intervention ends, according to research published online Jan. 28 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Long-Term Outcomes Similar With Prostatectomy, Radiation

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 30 (HealthDay News) -- At 15 years after diagnosis, disease-specific functional outcomes are not significantly different for men with localized cancer undergoing prostatectomy or radiotherapy, according to a study published in the Jan. 31 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Moxifloxacin Monotherapy Equivalent to Antibiotic Combo

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 30 (HealthDay News) -- Oral monotherapy with moxifloxacin is as efficacious and safe as combination therapy with ciprofloxacin plus amoxicillin/clavulanic acid for treatment of fever in adult patients with cancer and neutropenia who are at low risk of complications, according to a study published online Jan. 28 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Early Palliative Care in Lung CA Focuses on Coping, Symptoms

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 30 (HealthDay News) -- Early palliative care (PC) clinic visits, integrated with standard oncologic care for patients with metastatic lung cancer, emphasize symptom management, coping, and psychosocial aspects of illness, according to research published online Jan. 28 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Physicians Commonly Report Unsafe Hospital Workloads

TUESDAY, Jan. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians say they often face unsafe hospital workloads, according to a study published online Jan. 28 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Brain Scans Show Doctors Empathize With Patients

TUESDAY, Jan. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians who empathize with a patient in pain and feel relief when the patient receives effective treatment show activity in brain regions associated with pain relief and reward, according to a study published online Jan. 29 in Molecular Psychiatry.

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States Vary in Implementation of Smoking Reduction Policies

TUESDAY, Jan. 29 (HealthDay News) -- The prevalence of smoking and the implementation of combined interventions to reduce smoking vary between states, according to a report published by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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Low Rate of Prostate Cancer Diagnosis After REDUCE

TUESDAY, Jan. 29 (HealthDay News) -- In a two-year, observational follow-up study of the four-year REduction by DUtasteride of prostate Cancer Events (REDUCE) clinical study, men demonstrated a low rate of new prostate cancer diagnoses, although those men who had been treated with the 5α-reductase inhibitor (5ARI) dutasteride exhibited twice as many prostate cancers compared with placebo-treated men, according to research published in the March issue of The Journal of Urology.

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Breast-Conserving Therapy Beats Mastectomy in Early Breast CA

MONDAY, Jan. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Women with early-stage breast cancer who undergo lumpectomy plus radiation have better survival than women who undergo mastectomy, according to a study published online Jan. 28 in Cancer.

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Chlorhexidine Baths Cut Bacteremia in Critically Ill Kids

MONDAY, Jan. 28 (HealthDay News) -- For critically ill pediatric patients, daily bathing in chlorhexidine gluconate (CHG) is associated with reduced incidence of bacteremia, according to a study published online Jan. 28 in The Lancet.

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FDA: Gleevec's Latest Approval Is for Pediatric Cancer

FRIDAY, Jan. 25 (HealthDay News) -- The anti-cancer drug Gleevec (imatinib) has received new U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval to treat children newly diagnosed with Philadelphia chromosome positive (Ph+) acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), the agency said Friday.

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Folic Acid Supplementation Has No Effect on Cancer Incidence

FRIDAY, Jan. 25 (HealthDay News) -- Folic acid supplementation has no effect on the risk of cancer in the first five years of treatment, according to a meta-analysis published online Jan. 25 in The Lancet.

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ACPE Survey Finds Skepticism Relating to Online Doc Ratings

THURSDAY, Jan. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians are skeptical of online ratings, and believe that few patients use them, according to a survey published by the American College of Physician Executives (ACPE).

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Cancer Prevalence Higher With Long Duration of Diabetes

THURSDAY, Jan. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Patients diagnosed with type 2 diabetes have a greater prevalence of cancer with longer diabetes duration and with insulin use, according to a study published online Jan. 8 in Diabetes Care.

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Scoring System IDs Patients at Risk for Nosocomial GI Bleed

THURSDAY, Jan. 24 (HealthDay News) -- A scoring system based on several independent risk factors can identify non-critically ill hospitalized patients at risk for nosocomial gastrointestinal bleeding, according to a study published in the January issue of the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

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Surgeon Volume, Prognosis Post-Esophageal Cancer Op Linked

THURSDAY, Jan. 24 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with esophageal cancer undergoing resection, surgeon volume, but not hospital volume, is independently associated with prognosis, according to research published online Jan. 7 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Risk of Death Up for PE Patients With High Plasma Lactate Levels

THURSDAY, Jan. 24 (HealthDay News) -- Adult patients with acute pulmonary embolism (PE) with elevated plasma lactate levels are at a high risk of death and adverse outcomes, regardless of whether they also present with shock or hypotension; right-sided ventricular dysfunction; or elevation of troponin I, according to research published online Jan. 9 in the Annals of Emergency Medicine.

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Peginesatide Safe for Anemia in Patients Undergoing Dialysis

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Peginesatide, a peptide-based erythropoiesis-stimulating agent, is safe and effective in patients with advanced chronic kidney disease and anemia as long as they are undergoing dialysis, according to two studies published in the Jan. 24 issue of The New England Journal of Medicine.

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FDA: Drug Approved for Inherited Blood Disorder

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Exjade (deferasirox) has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to remove excess iron in the blood among people with the genetic blood disorder non-transfusion-dependent thalassemia (NTDT).

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Smoking Cuts Life Expectancy by More Than 10 Years

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Smokers typically die at least a decade earlier than nonsmokers, but this can be at least partially reversed by quitting smoking, according to a study published in the Jan. 24 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Large Teaching Hospitals Face More Readmission Penalties

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Large hospitals, teaching hospitals, and safety-net hospitals (SNHs) are more likely than other hospitals to be penalized under the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program (HRRP), according to a research letter published in the Jan. 23/30 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Care Transition Initiative Decreases Rehospitalizations

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 23 (HealthDay News) -- Communities instituting quality improvement initiatives for care transitions see significant declines in the rate of 30-day rehospitalizations and hospitalizations, according to a study published in the Jan. 23/30 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Physical Activity Cuts Mortality in Colorectal Cancer Survivors

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 23 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with invasive, non-metastatic colorectal cancer, increased recreational physical activity is associated with reduced all-cause mortality, while prolonged sedentary time correlates with increased all-cause mortality, according to a study published online Jan. 22 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Docs' Use of Informed Decision-Making for PSA Testing Varies

MONDAY, Jan. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians' practice styles related to informed decision-making for prostate-specific antigen (PSA) screening are linked to their personal beliefs about screening, according to a study published in the January/February issue of the Annals of Family Medicine.

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Interactive Decision Support System Ups Breast CA Detection

MONDAY, Jan. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Compared with currently used computer-aided detection (CAD) prompts, use of an interactive CAD system, in which CAD marks and their associated suspiciousness scores remain hidden unless queried by a reader, improves the detection of malignant masses using digital mammography, according to research published in the January issue of Radiology.

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About 10 Percent of Neoplastic Polyps Incompletely Resected

FRIDAY, Jan. 18 (HealthDay News) -- About 10 percent of neoplastic polyps are incompletely resected, with considerable variation in the rate of incomplete resection between endoscopists, according to a study published in the January issue of Gastroenterology.

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Expression, Genomic Patterns Predict Sarcoma Progression

FRIDAY, Jan. 18 (HealthDay News) -- The Complexity Index in Sarcoma (CINSARC) and Genomic Index prognostic signatures are valid independent methods of assessing synovial sarcoma (SS) prognosis, according to a study published online Jan. 14 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Smaller Radiation Fields OK for Glioblastoma Treatment

FRIDAY, Jan. 18 (HealthDay News) -- For patients receiving radiotherapy for glioblastoma (GBM), use of clinical target volume (CTV) margins as small as 5 mm does not lead to an increase in marginal failures, according to a study published online Dec. 1 in the American Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Specificity Up With Stereoscopic Mammography for CA Detection

FRIDAY, Jan. 18 (HealthDay News) -- Three-dimensional stereoscopic digital mammography (DM) significantly improves the specificity and accuracy of breast cancer detection, with a lower patient recall rate and a sensitivity comparable to that of standard DM in a high-risk population, according to research published in the January issue of Radiology.

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Palliative Radiation Use for Lung Cancer Higher Than Advised

FRIDAY, Jan. 18 (HealthDay News) -- Half of patients with metastatic non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) receive at least one course of palliative radiation therapy (RT), with younger patients and those who received chemotherapy or surgery more likely to receive palliative RT, according to a study published online Jan. 7 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Efforts Failed to Up Primary Care, Rural Resident Training

FRIDAY, Jan. 18 (HealthDay News) -- The 2005 redistribution of graduate medical education (GME) funds did little to train more residents in primary care and in rural areas, according to a study published in the January issue of Health Affairs.

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Tricuspid Regurgitant Jet Velocity Up in Childhood Cancer Survivors

THURSDAY, Jan. 17 (HealthDay News) -- About one-quarter of adult survivors of childhood cancer who received chest-directed radiation therapy (RT) have increased tricuspid regurgitant jet velocity (TRV), according to research published online Jan. 7 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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FDA: Octaplas Approved for Blood-Clotting Disorders

THURSDAY, Jan. 17 (HealthDay News) -- Octaplas has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to augment insufficient clotting proteins that could otherwise lead to excessive bleeding or excessive clotting.

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Inhibitor Development Risk Similar for Factor VIII Products

THURSDAY, Jan. 17 (HealthDay News) -- For children with severe hemophilia A, the risk of inhibitor development is similar with plasma-derived and recombinant factor VIII products and is not affected by von Willebrand factor content or by switching among products, according to research published in the Jan. 17 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Even Brief Interruptions Dramatically Increase Errors

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Even momentary interruptions of two to four seconds can significantly affect a person's ability to accurately complete a task requiring considerable thought, according to research published online Jan. 7 in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: General.

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Family Docs Are Early Adopters of Electronic Health Records

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Family practice physicians are adopting electronic health record (EHR) systems at a fast pace, with 68 percent using an EHR system by 2011, and 80 percent expected to be users by 2013, according to research published in the January/February issue of the Annals of Family Medicine.

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Income Affects Oncology Clinical Trial Participation

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Oncology patients with lower income, even older patients with access to Medicare, are significantly less likely to participate in clinical trials, according to research published online Jan. 7 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Selective D-Dimer Testing Strategy Seems Safe, Effective

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 16 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with suspected deep venous thrombosis (DVT), selective D-dimer testing is a safe and a more efficient testing strategy than universal testing, according to a study published in the Jan. 15 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Alkylating Agent Linked to Therapy-Related Leukemia

TUESDAY, Jan. 15 (HealthDay News) -- For patients treated for Hodgkin's lymphoma (HL), cumulative doses of alkylating agent (AA) is associated with the risk of therapy-related acute myeloid leukemia/myelodysplastic syndrome (t-AML/MDS), according to a study published online Jan. 7 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Surgery Doesn't Up Pediatric Neuroblastoma Outcomes

TUESDAY, Jan. 15 (HealthDay News) -- For pediatric patients with stage 4 neuroblastoma, surgery of the primary tumor site has no impact on outcomes, according to a study published online Jan. 2 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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ASCO Issues Guideline for Febrile Neutropenia in Adults

TUESDAY, Jan. 15 (HealthDay News) -- The American Society of Clinical Oncology has issued updated recommendations for both the prevention and management of febrile episodes in neutropenic oncology outpatients; the recommendations have been published online Jan. 14 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Certain Online Behaviors of Docs Warrant Investigation

MONDAY, Jan. 14 (HealthDay News) -- There is high consensus among state medical boards regarding the likelihood of probable investigations for certain online behaviors, according to a study published in the Jan. 15 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Top Five Issues for Docs and Patients Identified for 2013

MONDAY, Jan. 14 (HealthDay News) -- The top five issues that will impact physicians and patients in 2013 have been identified, according to a report published Dec. 10 by The Physicians Foundation.

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Smoking Plus Biomarker Panel IDs Bladder Cancer Prognosis

MONDAY, Jan. 14 (HealthDay News) -- Smoking intensity and a panel of nine cancer markers can be used to predict prognosis for patients with primary bladder tumors, according to research published online Jan. 14 in Cancer.

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New Hematuria Risk Index IDs Patients at Low Cancer Risk

MONDAY, Jan. 14 (HealthDay News) -- A Hematuria Risk Index could identify cancer risk among patients with asymptomatic microscopic hematuria, according to a study published online Jan. 11 in the Mayo Clinic Proceedings.

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In Oropharyngeal Cancer, HPV Status Impacts Distant Mets Risk

MONDAY, Jan. 14 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with oropharyngeal cancer (OPC), human papillomavirus (HPV) status and T and N staging categories affect the rate of distant control (DC) and may help identify candidates for treatment deintensification strategies, according to research published online Jan. 7 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Use of Beta-Blockers Tied to Improved Lung Cancer Survival

FRIDAY, Jan. 11 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC), intake of beta-blockers is associated with improved survival, according to a study published online Jan. 8 in the Annals of Oncology.

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Radiation Therapy Use Low in End-Stage Cancer

FRIDAY, Jan. 11 (HealthDay News) -- Although the overall use of radiation treatment among elderly end-stage cancer patients is low during their final month of life, many receive more than 10 days of treatment, according to a study published in the Jan. 1 issue of the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Pap Smear DNA Shows Promise in ID'ing Endometrial, Ovarian CA

FRIDAY, Jan. 11 (HealthDay News) -- DNA from Papanicolaou (Pap) smears could potentially be used for detecting endometrial and ovarian cancer, according to a study published in the Jan. 9 issue of Science Translational Medicine.

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Malaria Drug Association With Hemolytic Anemia Unclear

FRIDAY, Jan. 11 (HealthDay News) -- Artesunate, a drug used in the treatment of severe malaria, may or may not be associated with hemolytic anemia, so the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends close monitoring of patients treated with the drug for four weeks after administration of the agent, according to a report published in the Jan. 11 issue of the CDC's Morbidity & Mortality Weekly Report.

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Initial Guidelines Issued for Lung Cancer Screening

FRIDAY, Jan. 11 (HealthDay News) -- Initial guidelines indicate that low-dose computed-tomography lung cancer screening should be discussed with high-risk patients, with review of the potential harms, benefits, and limitations associated with screening, according to a report published online Jan. 11 in CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians.

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National U.S. Health Care Spending Relatively Stable

FRIDAY, Jan. 11 (HealthDay News) -- The growth in national U.S. health care spending was relatively stable in 2011, but growth in personal health care spending accelerated, according to a study published in the January issue of Health Affairs.

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CDC: Rare Blood Disorder Found in Intravenous Drug Users

THURSDAY, Jan. 10 (HealthDay News) -- In 2012, 15 intravenous drug users within a relatively small geographic area developed thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (TTP), possibly due to reformulating and injecting an oral pain reliever, according to a report published in the Jan. 11 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity & Mortality Weekly Report.

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10-Year Lag in Survival Benefit After Cancer Screening

THURSDAY, Jan. 10 (HealthDay News) -- Breast and colorectal cancer screening have, on average, a 10-year time lag to survival benefit, according to a meta-analysis published online Jan. 8 in BMJ.

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ASCO Issues Recommendations to Improve Cancer Survivor Care

THURSDAY, Jan. 10 (HealthDay News) -- The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) has presented recommendations for promoting high-quality cancer survivorship care in a report published online Jan. 7 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Genetic CRC Risk Likely Mediated by Differential Adenoma Risk

THURSDAY, Jan. 10 (HealthDay News) -- Much of the genetic risk for colorectal cancer (CRC) in the general population is mediated by differential adenoma risk, according to research published in the January issue of Gastroenterology.

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SPIRIT 2013 Clinical Trial Protocol Guidelines Issued

THURSDAY, Jan. 10 (HealthDay News) -- A panel of experts, including trial investigators, trial coordinators, and representatives from ethics and regulatory agencies, has developed the Standard Protocol Items: Recommendations for Interventional Trials (SPIRIT) 2013 guidelines for the minimum content of a clinical trial, according to a statement published online Jan. 8 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Multiple Stressors Contribute to Readmission Within 30 Days

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Nearly one-fifth of Medicare patients discharged from the hospital are readmitted within 30 days, which seems to arise from a combination of factors contributing to patient vulnerability, according to research published in the Jan. 9 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Breast Cancer Screening Costs Medicare >$1 Billion Yearly

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Breast cancer screening costs the Medicare fee-for-service program more than $1 billion annually, according to a study published online Jan. 7 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Benefit of Sentinel Lymph Node Biopsy in Melanoma Unclear

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Despite considerable controversy surrounding the third interim results of the Multicenter Selective Lymphadenectomy Trial (MSLT-I), which indicate a benefit of sentinel lymph node biopsy (SLNB) on disease-free survival in melanoma, the procedure is carried out routinely, according to a report published online Jan. 8 in BMJ.

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Ovarian Cancer Rates Declining in Breast Cancer Survivors

TUESDAY, Jan. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Primary ovarian cancer incidence is declining in the United States, both among the general population and among breast cancer survivors, according to research published online Jan. 2 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Reduced Penile Size Linked to Prostate Cancer Treatment

TUESDAY, Jan. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Compared with radiotherapy alone, men with recurrent prostate cancer are more likely to have complaints about reduced penile size after treatment with radiotherapy plus androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) or radical prostatectomy (RP), according to research published in the January issue of Urology.

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Health Care Use Dropped Among All During Recession

TUESDAY, Jan. 8 (HealthDay News) -- Health care use declined significantly among all races and ethnicities during the recession from 2007 to 2009, with the only ethnic disparity being fewer physician visits by Hispanics compared with whites, according to a study published online Jan. 7 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Fewer Than One-Third of U.S. Teen Girls Vaccinated for HPV

MONDAY, Jan. 7 (HealthDay News) -- The national prevalence of three doses of human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination among adolescent girls is about 32.0 percent, and incidence rates for some HPV-associated cancers are increasing, according to a report published online Jan. 7 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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Death Rate for All Cancers Down in U.S. From 2000 to 2009

MONDAY, Jan. 7 (HealthDay News) -- From 2000 to 2009, there was a general decrease in the death rates for all cancers combined for men and women, although the incidence of some cancers continued to rise, according to a report published online Jan. 7 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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Shared Savings May Promote Care Coordination Entity Use

MONDAY, Jan. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Use of shared savings could encourage individuals who are dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid to enroll in state-designed care coordination entities (CCEs), according to a perspective piece published online Jan. 2 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Low Rates of High Platelet Reactivity With Prasugrel Tx

MONDAY, Jan. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Treatment of patients with acute coronary syndromes (ACS) with percutaneous coronary intervention and a maintenance dose of prasugrel is associated with low rates of high platelet reactivity (HPR), ischemic events, and major bleeding in the first 30 days of treatment, according to research published in the Jan. 1 issue of The American Journal of Cardiology.

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Most Unaware of Out-of-Pocket Costs for Prostate Cancer Tx

FRIDAY, Jan. 4 (HealthDay News) -- Most patients with localized prostate cancer know little about the out-of-pocket expenses (OOPE) of the different treatments, and would not have chosen a different treatment even if they had known the actual OOPE of their treatment, according to a study published in the December issue of Urology.

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E-mail Prompts Improve Code Status Documentation

FRIDAY, Jan. 4 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with advanced lung cancer, prompting oncologists via e-mail successfully improved both the rate and timing of outpatient code status documentation in patients' electronic health records, according to research published online Jan. 2 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Pap Testing Moving Towards Alignment With Guidelines

FRIDAY, Jan. 4 (HealthDay News) -- Increasing numbers of women are receiving Papanicolau (Pap) screening for cervical cancer at an age and with a frequency consistent with the latest guidelines, according to two studies published in the Jan. 4 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity & Mortality Weekly Report.

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Tomosynthesis Ups Accuracy of Digital Mammography

FRIDAY, Jan. 4 (HealthDay News) -- Using a combination of tomosynthesis, which produces a three-dimensional reconstruction of the breast, with digital mammography increases radiologists' diagnostic accuracy and significantly lowers the number of recalls for non-cancer cases, according to research published in the January issue of Radiology.

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Nurse-Led Monitoring Improves Cancer-Related Fatigue

FRIDAY, Jan. 4 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with advanced cancer, nurse-led monitoring and optimized treatment of physical symptoms significantly improves cancer-related fatigue, according to research published online Jan. 2 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Association Between Health Care Cost, Quality Inconsistent

THURSDAY, Jan. 3 (HealthDay News) -- The direction of the association between health care cost and quality is unclear, with inconsistent evidence indicating positive, negative, mixed, and indeterminate associations, according to a review published in the Jan. 1 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Restrictive Transfusion Strategy Safe for Acute GI Bleeding

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 2 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with severe acute gastrointestinal bleeding, a restrictive transfusion approach is safe and effective compared with a liberal approach, according to a study published in the Jan. 2 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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House Joins Senate to Avert Medicare Cuts

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 2 (HealthDay News) -- The House of Representatives settled on an 11th-hour agreement late Tuesday night that has averted the widespread tax increases and spending cuts that would have gone into effect January 1. This agreement occurred 21 hours after the U.S. Senate did its part to steer the country clear of the "fiscal cliff."

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Administering Chemo Ups Income for Non-Salaried Oncologists

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 2 (HealthDay News) -- Non-salaried oncologists report the potential for increased salaries with the administration of chemotherapy or growth factors for lung or colorectal cancer patients, according to a study published online Dec. 26 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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