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July 2014 Briefing - Hematology & Oncology

Friday, August 1, 2014 (Last Updated: 08/05/2014)

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

Advanced Care Decision Aids Underutilized

THURSDAY, July 31, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Decision aids are underutilized for advanced care planning and their effectiveness is not well documented, according to a review published online July 29 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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J&J Pulls Morcellator Devices From Market

THURSDAY, July 31, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- In a letter that was to be sent to all of its customers Thursday, Johnson & Johnson asked that its laparoscopic power morcellators be returned to the company, the Wall Street Journal reported.

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Benefits of E-Cigarettes May Outweigh Harms

THURSDAY, July 31, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Allowing e-cigarettes to compete with regular cigarettes might cut tobacco-related deaths and illness, according to a new study, partly funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health, published online July 31 in Addiction.

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Presence, Intensity of Pain and Itch Linked to Skin Cancers

THURSDAY, July 31, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The presence and intensity of pain and itch may be indicators of skin cancer, according to a study published online July 23 in JAMA Dermatology.

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Nighttime Light Exposure May Spur Tamoxifen Resistance

THURSDAY, July 31, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- An animal study suggests that exposure to light at night, which disrupts circadian rhythm and melatonin production, may drive intrinsic resistance to tamoxifen therapy in breast cancer. The study was published online July 25 in Cancer Research.

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Survival Up for Hematopoietic-Cell Transplant in SCID

WEDNESDAY, July 30, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For children with severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID), hematopoietic-cell transplantation from matched sibling donors, or from other donors before onset of infection, is associated with excellent survival, according to a study published in the July 31 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Slow Progress Toward Meaningful Use Stage 2

WEDNESDAY, July 30, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Providers and hospitals are making slow progress toward achieving meaningful use stage 2, according to an article published July 10 in Medical Economics.

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HPV-Related Noncervical Cancers on the Rise in Canada

WEDNESDAY, July 30, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Over the past several decades, the incidence of human papillomavirus (HPV)-related noncervical cancers has increased in Canada, according to research published online July 22 in CMAJ Open.

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Diabetes Linked to Increased Risk of Head and Neck Cancer

WEDNESDAY, July 30, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Patients newly diagnosed with diabetes have an increased risk of developing head and neck cancer, according to a study published online July 24 in JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery.

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Viewpoint: Why Boys Should Be Vaccinated Against HPV

WEDNESDAY, July 30, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Programs to introduce and implement the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine for boys will cut incidence of HPV and several cancers, according to a personal view published online July 29 in BMJ.

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IOM Recommends Restructuring GME Financing

TUESDAY, July 29, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Medicare support for graduate medical education (GME) should be restructured and based on its value and contribution to the nation's health needs, according to a report published July 29 by the Institute of Medicine (IOM).

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Low Trust in Physician Tied to Distress in Cancer Patients

TUESDAY, July 29, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Having a lower level of trust in one's physician is associated with more emotional distress and more physical limitations within the first 15 months after cancer diagnosis in more anxiously attached patients, according to a study published in the July issue of General Hospital Psychiatry.

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Preterm Birth Tied to Lasting Venous Thromboembolism Risk

TUESDAY, July 29, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Preterm birth is associated with increased long-term risk of venous thromboembolism (VTE), according to a study published online July 28 in Pediatrics.

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Assay May Reduce Unnecessary Repeat Prostate Biopsies

TUESDAY, July 29, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Among patients who have a prostate biopsy that is negative for cancer, an epigenetic assay may identify those who do not require repeat biopsy, according to research published in The Journal of Urology.

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FDA Expands Use of Imbruvica for Certain Form of Leukemia

MONDAY, July 28, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Approved use for Imbruvica (ibrutinib) has been expanded to include people with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) who have a deletion in chromosome 17, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said Monday in a news release.

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Access for Pharmaceutical Sales Reps Continuing to Decline

MONDAY, July 28, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Pharmaceutical sales representatives' access to physicians is continuing to decrease, even in previously rep-friendly specialties, according to a report published by ZS Associates.

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Type of Lymphoma Treatment Impacts Degree of Harm to Sperm

MONDAY, July 28, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Lymphoma treatment has damaging effects on spermatogenesis but, in most patients, sperm production recovers within two years post-treatment, according to a study published online July 17 in Fertility and Sterility.

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Young Cancer Patients at High Risk for Heavy Menstrual Bleeding

MONDAY, July 28, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Adolescent girls undergoing treatment for cancer are at high risk for heavy menstrual bleeding, and gynecologic care is advised for careful management of this problem, according to a Committee Opinion published in the August issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

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HPV Testing Every Three Years As Safe As Other Strategies

MONDAY, July 28, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Primary human papillomavirus (HPV) testing every three years seems to be a better screening alternative to Papanicolaou (Pap) testing every three years or concurrent HPV and Pap testing every five years, according to a study published online July 18 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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Low Yield for Repeat Colonoscopy in Some Patients

MONDAY, July 28, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Repeat colonoscopies within 10 years are of little benefit to patients who had no polyps found on adequate examination; however, repeat colonoscopies do benefit patients when the baseline examination was compromised, according to research published in the August issue of Gastroenterology.

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Survey IDs Patients' Views on Health Care Provider Quality

FRIDAY, July 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Most Americans focus on provider quality related to doctor-patient interactions rather than effectiveness of care when defining provider quality, according to a report published by the Associated Press-NORC (AP-NORC) Center for Public Affairs Research.

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Post-Op Recovery Program Aids Community Hospital Outcomes

FRIDAY, July 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Implementation of an enhanced recovery after surgery (ERAS) colorectal program is feasible in a community hospital setting and significantly improves outcomes, according to a study published online July 23 in JAMA Surgery.

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Oncology Fellows, Clinicians Report Similar Burnout

FRIDAY, July 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- U.S. oncology fellows may underestimate the workload they will experience once they enter practice, according to research published online July 21 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Tool Assesses Psychosocial Problems in Genetic Counseling

FRIDAY, July 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A questionnaire improves discussion of psychosocial problems during genetic counseling sessions for cancer, according to research published online July 21 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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CDC: Too Few Teens Receiving HPV Vaccine

FRIDAY, July 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- An "unacceptably low" number of girls and boys are getting the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine, which protects against cervical, anal, and other cancers, U.S. health officials said Thursday.

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Serum Free Light Chain Level Increase Precedes Amyloidosis

FRIDAY, July 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Increased serum free light chains (FLCs) precede the presentation of immunoglobulin light chain amyloidosis (AL amyloidosis), according to a study published online July 14 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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FDA Approves Tough-to-Abuse Formulation of Oxycodone

THURSDAY, July 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Targiniq ER (oxycodone hydrochloride and naloxone hydrochloride extended release) has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration as a long-term, around-the-clock treatment for severe pain when other therapies are ineffective or unavailable.

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Number of Uninsured Down After ACA Open Enrollment

THURSDAY, July 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- There has been a decrease in the number of uninsured following the open enrollment period of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), according to a report published online July 23 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Good Odds for Those Who Need Bone Marrow Donor

THURSDAY, July 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Most suitable candidates in the United States who need a bone marrow transplant can find an acceptable match through the National Marrow Donor Program, according to a new study.

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Race Affects Opioid Selection for Cancer Pain

THURSDAY, July 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Racial disparities exist in the type of opioid prescribed for cancer pain, according to a study published online July 21 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Ob-Gyn Guidance Issued for Young Cancer Patient Concerns

THURSDAY, July 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Young cancer patients and survivors may have gynecologic concerns, which should be managed before, during, and after treatment, according to a Committee Opinion published in the August issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

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For VTE Prevention, Best Anticoagulant Varies by Surgery

THURSDAY, July 24, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Aspirin may be less preferable to other anticoagulants following hip fracture repair, but may be favored after elective knee or hip arthroplasty, according to a meta-analysis published online July 17 in the Journal of Hospital Medicine.

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mTORC Pathway Involved in Antiphospholipid Sx Vasculopathy

WEDNESDAY, July 23, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The mammalian target of rapamycin complex (mTORC) pathway seems to be involved in antiphospholipid syndrome-associated vascular lesions, according to a study published in the July 24 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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FDA Approves Zydelig for Three Types of Blood Cancer

WEDNESDAY, July 23, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Zydelig (idelalisib) has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat relapsed forms of blood cancer, including chronic lymphocytic leukemia, follicular B-cell non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, and small lymphocytic lymphoma, the FDA said Wednesday in a news release.

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Uterine Cancer in 27/10,000 Women Undergoing Morcellation

WEDNESDAY, July 23, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For women undergoing hysterectomy by morcellation, the prevalence of uterine cancers is 27 per 10,000, with increased prevalence with advanced age, according to a research letter published online July 22 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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American Red Cross Issues Urgent Call for Blood Donations

WEDNESDAY, July 23, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Blood donations to the American Red Cross are down substantially, and the agency says an "emergency situation" could arise within weeks.

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Contralateral Prophylactic Mastectomy Benefit Questioned

WEDNESDAY, July 23, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For women with stage I or II breast cancer without a BRCA mutation, contralateral prophylactic mastectomy (CPM) is associated with an absolute 20-year survival benefit of less than 1 percent, according to a study published online July 16 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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Online Reviews Show Patients Value Docs' Interpersonal Skills

TUESDAY, July 22, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Patient reviews indicate that the attributes most valued in physicians include interpersonal skills and bedside manner, according to a report published online July 16 by Vitals.

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Gene Marker May Predict Breast Cancer Response to Tamoxifen

TUESDAY, July 22, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Researchers have identified genes that may help predict whether a patient with estrogen receptor (ER)-positive breast cancer is likely to benefit from tamoxifen therapy, according to a study published in the July 15 issue of Cancer Research.

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Physician Offices Investing in Patient Portals for EHRs

THURSDAY, July 10, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Practitioners are continuing to invest in electronic health records (EHRs), specifically to improve access for patients, according to an article published June 13 in Medical Economics.

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National Survey Finds Most U.S. Physicians Are Satisfied

MONDAY, July 21, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Most U.S. physicians are satisfied, with satisfied physicians more likely to report positive trends in medicine, according to a report published by Jackson Healthcare.

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Transdermal 4-Hydroxytamoxifen Gel Beneficial in DCIS

MONDAY, July 21, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For women with ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), 4-hydroxytamoxifen (4-OHT) gel applied to breast skin has a similar antiproliferative effect as oral tamoxifen, according to a study published in the July 15 issue of Clinical Cancer Research.

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Can Bike Riding Up Prostate Cancer Risk?

MONDAY, July 21, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A new study fuels the ongoing debate over the health risks of bicycle riding for men: Researchers found that cyclists who bike more may face a higher risk of prostate cancer, but not a greater chance of infertility or erectile dysfunction. The study appeared in the July 11 issue of the Journal of Men's Health.

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Lanreotide Improves Survival With Enteropancreatic Tumors

MONDAY, July 21, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Lanreotide significantly improves survival among patients with metastatic enteropancreatic neuroendocrine tumors (grade 1 or 2), according to a study published in the July 17 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Seriously Ill Patients Have Limited Facial Expression

FRIDAY, July 18, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Decreased variability of facial expression may help identify patients with serious cardiopulmonary disease in the emergency care setting, according to research published online July 14 in the Emergency Medicine Journal.

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Poor Parent-Provider Agreement in Advanced Pediatric Cancer

FRIDAY, July 18, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For pediatric patients with advanced cancer, parent-provider concordance is poor regarding prognosis and goals of care, according to a study published online July 14 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Patients, Caregivers Struggle With Advanced Multimorbidity

FRIDAY, July 18, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A better understanding of the needs of patients with advanced multimorbidity may offer insights into how to improve care, according to research published online May 28 in BMJ Supportive & Palliative Care.

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Legal Risks for Providing Financial Assistance to Patients

THURSDAY, July 17, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians need to be aware of the ramifications of providing financial assistance to patients, according to an article published July 8 in Medical Economics.

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Testicular Cancer Rising in Young Hispanics in the U.S.

THURSDAY, July 17, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Incidence rates of testicular germ cell tumors have been increasing among young Hispanics in the United States, according to research published online July 14 in Cancer.

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Doctors More Likely Than Public to Be Registered Organ Donors

THURSDAY, July 17, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians are more likely to register to be organ donors than the general public, according to a research letter published in the July 16 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Increasing Flow of Information Has Impact on Patient Consent

WEDNESDAY, July 16, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The increasing flow of information as part of health information exchanges raises certain issues for patient consent, according to an article published July 8 in Medical Economics.

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New Prognostic Factors May Be Useful in Staging Melanoma

WEDNESDAY, July 16, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- New prognostic factors may be useful in predicting survival in patients with thin melanoma, according to research published online July 7 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Added Corticosteroid Deemed Ineffective for Cancer Pain

TUESDAY, July 15, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The addition of methylprednisolone (MP) to opioid therapy does not appear to increase the analgesic effect for cancer pain, according to research published online July 7 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Varying Rates of Observation As Management for Prostate Cancer

MONDAY, July 14, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Rates of observation as management for low-risk prostate cancer vary widely, and androgen-deprivation therapy (ADT) is not associated with improved survival for men with localized prostate cancer, according to two studies published online July 14 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Medical Schools Being Challenged to Find Training Sites

MONDAY, July 14, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Medical schools are working to find solutions to ensure their students can continue to receive clinical training in spite of the escalating shortage of training sites, according to an article published by the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP).

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Vasectomy, Prostate Cancer Link Stronger for Lethal Disease

MONDAY, July 14, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Vasectomy is associated with an increased incidence of prostate cancer overall during extended follow-up, with an elevated risk seen for high-grade and lethal cancer, according to a study published online July 7 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Class III Obesity Substantially Increases Mortality Rate

FRIDAY, July 11, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Class III obesity, defined as a body mass index (BMI) of 40 kg/m² or higher, is associated with a substantially higher total mortality compared with normal weight, according to research published online July 8 in PLOS Medicine.

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ACOs Require Overhaul to Health Care Delivery System

WEDNESDAY, July 9, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The accountable care organization (ACO) model requires an overhaul for health care delivery, according to an article published June 24 in Medical Economics.

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Surgical Biopsy Safe With Advanced Lung Cancer

WEDNESDAY, July 9, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Surgical biopsy samples can be safely collected in patients with stage IV non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and can inform appropriate personalized therapy, according to a study published in the July issue of the Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery.

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Depressed Men With Prostate Cancer Fare Worse

WEDNESDAY, July 9, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Depressed men with a diagnosis of intermediate- or high-risk prostate cancer have worse overall outcomes, according to a study published online July 7 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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EPO, Higher Transfusion Threshold No Benefit After TBI

WEDNESDAY, July 9, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Neither erythropoietin nor a high hemoglobin transfusion threshold improve neurological recovery after traumatic brain injury, according to a study published in the July 2 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Breast Cancer Screening Costs Up in Medicare Patients

TUESDAY, July 8, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Although use of newer technologies and costs associated with breast cancer screening have increased, no change in stage at diagnosis has been observed in Medicare beneficiaries, according to research published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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Most Docs Find M.B.A. Training Advantageous to Their Careers

TUESDAY, July 8, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Graduates with dual training in medicine and business increasingly pursue leadership roles and report greater career acceleration, according to a study published online June 20 in Academic Medicine.

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Don't Forget Patient Privacy When Marketing Your Practice

MONDAY, July 7, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Use of marketing by health care providers must be in accordance with federal and state regulations relating to patient privacy, according to an article published June 24 in Medical Economics.

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HIV-Infected Individuals Less Likely to Receive Cancer Tx

MONDAY, July 7, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- HIV-infected individuals with cancer are less likely to receive treatment, according to a study published online June 30 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Heparin Cuts Major Adverse Ischemic Events in Primary PCI

MONDAY, July 7, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For patients undergoing emergency angiography in the context of primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PPCI), use of unfractionated heparin is associated with a reduction in major adverse ischemic events versus bivalirudin, with no increase in major bleeding, according to a study published online July 5 in The Lancet.

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FDA Approves Beleodaq for Peripheral T-Cell Lymphoma

MONDAY, July 7, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Beleodaq (belinostat) has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat peripheral T-cell lymphoma (PTCL), a rare and aggressive form of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

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Three Opportunities Presented for Practice Growth

THURSDAY, July 3, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Maximizing the growth potential of a practice over time requires physicians to consider various opportunities, including increasing the size of medical groups, embracing technology, and use of marketing, according to an article published June 24 in Medical Economics.

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AMA: Tips for Managing Medical School Loans

THURSDAY, July 3, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Creating a budget and other tips can help medical school graduates to manage their loan repayments, according to an article published by the American Medical Association (AMA).

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Central Venous Catheters Up Infection Risk in Cancer Patients

THURSDAY, July 3, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Long-term central venous catheters (CVCs) are associated with an increased risk of infection in older adults with cancer, according to research published online June 30 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Recommendations Made for Partnering Patients in Health Care

THURSDAY, July 3, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Changes need to be implemented in the education system in order to fully integrate patients and their families as equal partners in health care, according to a report based on recommendations made at a conference convened by the Macy Foundation.

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Tips Offered for Improving Practice Financial Management

WEDNESDAY, July 2, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Establishing clear financial policies for practices and making it easy for patients to pay are two suggestions for improving practices' financial management, according to an article published online June 24 in Medical Economics.

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AAFP Urges Changes in Telemedicine Compensation

WEDNESDAY, July 2, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Significant changes should be made to delivery and payment of telemedicine services, according to an article published by the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP).

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Lower-Intensity Bone Marrow Transplant Aids Sickle Cell

WEDNESDAY, July 2, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A lower-intensity bone marrow transplant technique may reverse sickle cell disease in patients with severe disease, according to a study published in the July 2 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Genetics May Explain Racial Disparity in Colon CA Outcome

WEDNESDAY, July 2, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Genetic differences may contribute to the higher mortality associated with colon cancer in African-Americans compared with Caucasians, according to research published online June 23 in PLOS ONE.

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Health Care Expenditure Has Slowed in United States

WEDNESDAY, July 2, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The growth in U.S. health care expenditure has slowed in recent years, coming some way toward closing the gap with other countries of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), according to an article in the health of Americans series published online July 1 in The Lancet.

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ACA Offers Opportunities for Prevention, Public Health

TUESDAY, July 1, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is fostering collaboration between the public health and health care systems and can improve quality of care and advance population health, according to an article in the health of Americans series published online July 1 in The Lancet.

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Everolimus Does Not Improve Survival in Advanced Liver CA

TUESDAY, July 1, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Everolimus does not improve overall survival in patients with advanced liver cancer, according to a study published in the July 2 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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CDC: Opioid Prescriptions Vary Widely Among States

TUESDAY, July 1, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians in Alabama -- the state with the highest number of opioid painkiller prescriptions -- issued nearly three times as many of those prescriptions as doctors in Hawaii -- the lowest prescribing state, according to researchers with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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Hypervigilance Critical for Difficult-to-Detect Melanoma

TUESDAY, July 1, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Monitoring patients at extreme risk with total-body photography (TBP) and sequential digital dermoscopy imaging (SDDI) assists with early diagnosis of primary melanoma, according to a study published online June 25 in JAMA Dermatology.

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