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NEWS - General Interest

Are We Being Misled About Precision Medicine? – The New York Times (10 articles per month are free)

“Doctors and hospitals love to talk about the cancer patients they’ve saved, and reporters love to write about them. But deaths still vastly outnumber the rare successes.”

 


Screening: How overdiagnosis and other harms can undermine the benefits – Health News Review (free)

“All screening programs do harm, some do good as well.”

 


The Moral Dilemma of Learning Medicine from the Poor – The Doctors Weight In (free) (via @kennylinafp)

“I learned good skills because I was allowed to practice on people who had no other option.”

 


Good Documentation – JAMA (free for a limited period)

“In this narrative medicine essay, the author, who transitioned from paper and pen to computer-generated electronic health record keeping wonders whether the self-select menu items ultimately dehumanizes both the patient and the physician.” (via @JAMA_current see Tweet)

 


Abraar Karan: Changing the way we communicate about patients – The BMJ Opinion (free) (via @NUNESDOC)

“Father of 2, retired car salesman and keen on football NOT the colon cancer in Bed 4 – social history brings humanity back to the bedside” (via @hospicedoctor see Tweet)

 


Did Juul Lure Teenagers and Get ‘Customers for Life’? – The New York Times (10 articles per month are free)

“…will it be possible to get people who are addicted to cigarettes to switch to e-cigarettes, which are less harmful, without enticing a new generation or non-smokers to try them?” (via @CaulfieldTim see Tweet)

 


Earwax, Of All Things, Poses Unrecognized Risk In Long-Term Care – Kaiser Health News (free)

“Of all the indignities that come with aging, excessive earwax may be the most insidious… when it goes unrecognized, it can pose serious problems, especially for the 2.2 million people who live in U.S. nursing homes and assisted living centers.”

 


Alcohol use and burden for 195 countries and territories, 1990–2016: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2016 – The Lancet (free)

Commentaries: No level of alcohol consumption improves health – The Lancet (free) AND No amount of alcohol is good for your overall health, global study says – CNN (free) AND New scientific study: no safe level of alcohol – Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (free)

“Alcohol was responsible for nearly 3 million deaths in 2016, the study says. It was the leading risk factor for disease and premature death in men and women between the ages of 15 and 49 worldwide in 2016, accounting for nearly one in 10 deaths.” (from @cnni see Tweet)

 


How scientists are learning to predict your future with your genes – VOX (free) (via @EricTopol)

“There’s not one light switch but hundreds, each with the ability to slightly increase or decrease the chances of developing the illness.”

 


Breastfeeding History and Risk of Stroke Among Parous Postmenopausal Women in the Women’s Health Initiative – Journal of the American Heart Association (free)

Commentaries: Breastfeeding linked to lower stroke risk – Reuters (free) AND Breastfeeding may help protect mothers against stroke – AHA News (free)

“…ultimately, the study is observational, which means that it can only prove that breast feeding is associated with lower risk of stroke as opposed to being the cause of the lowered risk.” (from Reuters)

 


Our first year together – World Health Organization (free)

“Delighted to share my first annual letter as WHO Director-General. It outlines our major achievements over the past year and what I believe are the keys to achieving #HealthForAll. I’m proud of everything we’ve achieved – but we’re just getting started!” (via @DrTedros see Tweet)

 


Association Between Electronic Cigarette Use and Myocardial Infarction – American Journal of Preventive Medicine (free for a limited period)

Commentary: Risk of heart attacks is double for daily e-cigarette users – University of California – San Francisco, via ScienceDaily (free)

“New analysis shows five-fold risk for people who use both cigarettes and e-cigarettes daily” (from ScienceDaily)

 


How Unpaywall is transforming open science – Nature News (free)

Related: Unlocking paywalled research papers (legally) (free commentaries) AND Half of papers searched for online are free to read (free)

We have been using the Unpaywall Extension for a while, and it is indeed a handy tool to find free versions (entirely legal) of paywalled articles.

 


Opinion: Lessons for physicians from ‘The Bleeding Edge’: If you see something, say something – STAT (free)

“…physicians must act decisively when they identify the rare outlier in their midst. To do anything less would risk our credibility. Worse still, it could risk the lives of the people we took an oath not to harm.”

 


Would technology enabled remote consulting save time and add value in primary care? – The BMJ Opinion (free)

“Would remote consulting save time and add value in primary care? Rising multimorbidity makes the evaluation of potentially time saving technologies ever more necessary” (via @bmj_latest see Tweet)

 


Special Issue: Roles of Physicians in Healthy Dying- AMA Journal of Ethics (free articles)

“What the roles of clinicians and patients should be in defining what constitutes a quality dying experience and good care of dying people has received less attention than issues like euthanasia and assisted death. Which parts of dying, if any, should be medicalized and why? What do patients and clinicians need to know about dying and why? The August 2018 issue of the AMA Journal of Ethics explores these and other questions.”

 


Anti-Vaccine Activists Have Taken Vaccine Science Hostage – The New York Times (10 articles per month are free)

“Should researchers not publish findings when there’s a chance they might be misinterpreted and scare the public?” (via @NYTHealth see Tweet)

 


Playing Doctor with Watson: Medical Applications Expose Current Limits of AI – Spiegel (free) (via @EricTopol)

“IBM has big plans for how its Watson artificial intelligence software could change the medical industry. But a number of hospitals have ended their experiments with the platform, arguing that it doesn’t help diagnose or treat diseases.”

 


The Illness Is Bad Enough. The Hospital May Be Even Worse – The New York Times (10 articles per month are free)

Related: Post-Hospital Syndrome — An Acquired, Transient Condition of Generalized Risk – New England Journal of Medicine (free) AND Is Posthospital Syndrome a Result of Hospitalization-Induced Allostatic Overload? – Journal of Hospital Medicine (free) (via @hmkyale)

“The elderly are particularly vulnerable to “post-hospital syndrome,” some experts believe, and that may be why so many patients return.”

 


No proof that moderate drinking prevents dementia – NHS Choices (free)

See original study: Alcohol consumption and risk of dementia (free text, editorial and commentaries)

“”Middle aged drinking may reduce dementia risk, new study finds,” is the misleading and irresponsible headline in The Daily Telegraph.”

 


How Do You Want to Die? – The New York Times (10 articles per month are free)

“Are we turning sudden cardiac death into a longer, winding path? Defibrillators can prevent sudden death but they also can take away the sudden-death option.” (via @RasoiniR see Tweet)

 


A Fear of Lawsuits Really Does Seem to Result in Extra Medical Tests – The New York Times (10 articles per month are free)

“Doctors are known for complaining about how the malpractice system adds costs. But it has been hard to prove, until now.”

 


Antidepressant Withdrawal Syndrome – Therapeutics Initiative (free)

Related Perspective: Many People Taking Antidepressants Discover They Cannot Quit – The New York Times (10 articles per month are free)

“Antidepressants should be added to the list of drugs associated with tolerance, dependence and a withdrawal syndrome.”

“Withdrawal symptoms occur in at least one-third of patients who stop.”

 


Paramedic 2: Epinephrine harms/helps in out of hospital cardiac arrest – First10EM (free)

See Also: Original Article (free study and editorial) AND Expert Reaction (free commentaries)

“Paramedic 2 quick summary:

If 1000 people treated with epinephrine:

– 246 extra ROSC (return of spontaneous circulation)

– 158 extra admissions

– 8 extra survivors (5 with bad neuro outcomes, 3 with good neuro outcomes)

– What those numbers mean is a value question, not a science question.” (via @First10EM see Tweet)

 


A Randomized Trial of Epinephrine in Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest – New England Journal of Medicine (free)

Editorial: Testing Epinephrine for Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest (free)

Commentary: Using adrenaline in cardiac arrests results in less than 1 percent more people leaving hospital alive – University of Warwick, via EurekAlert (free)

See also: Infographic detailing result findings (free)

“A clinical trial of the use of adrenaline in cardiac arrests has found that its use results in less than 1% more people leaving hospital alive – but almost doubles the risk of severe brain damage for survivors of cardiac arrest” (from University of Warwick).

 


Nurses as substitutes for doctors in primary care – Cochrane Library (free)

Summary: Nurses as substitutes for doctors in primary care – Cochrane Library (free)

“This updated Cochrane Review indicates that nurses can effectively expand the capacity of the primary care workforce”.

 


The right diet can boost potency of cancer drugs – Nature News (free)

Original article: Suppression of insulin feedback enhances the efficacy of PI3K inhibitors – Nature (link to abstract – $ for full-text)

Related: Top oncologist to study effect of diet on cancer drugs – The Guardian (free)

“Diets appear to matter in mouse cancer Rx – can these preclinical findings be translated to humans?” (via @Aiims1742 see Tweet)

 


Seriously, Juice Is Not Healthy – The New York Times (10 articles per month are free)

“Would you take a multivitamin if it contained 10 teaspoons of sugar? No. Then why are you drinking juice?” (via @NYTHealth see Tweet)

 


Hidden conflicts? – Science Magazine (free for a limited period)

““Pay-later conflicts of interest” have gone largely unnoticed & entirely unpoliced”. (via @cpiller see Tweet)

 


Opinion: Endless Gaming May Be a Bad Habit. That Doesn’t Make It a Mental Illness – The New York Times (10 articles per month are free)

Related: Gaming addiction as a mental disorder: it’s premature to pathologise players – The Conversation (free)

“The World Health Organization has made “internet gaming” a diagnosable disorder. But many experts aren’t even sure it exists”.

 


Why do-it-yourself blood tests are a bad idea – Common Sense Family Doctor (free)

Related: Benjamin Mazer: Theranos’ dystopian vision lives on – The BMJ Opinion (free)

“Routine blood testing in healthy people has numerous downsides that Holmes never mentioned, including poor predictive value, false positives, and overdiagnosis” (from Common Sense Family Doctor)

“When you go about testing everyone for everything, you don’t create a world of healthy people….you create a nightmare where everyone is sick” (from The BMJ Opinion)

 


Rip Current Heroes Study Guide – National Geographic (free PDF)

News Release: Rip Current Heroes Study Guide (Free)

Videos: Rip Current Heroes (free)

Related Reports: Preventing drowning: an implementation guide – World Health Organization (free) AND Global report on drowning: preventing a leading killer – World Health Organization (free) AND Hidden Hazards: An Exploration of Open Water Drowning and Risks for Children – Safe Kids Worldwide (free PDF)

Source: Global Health NOW Newsletter

“Each year they kill, on average, more lives in Australia than bushfires, floods, cyclones and sharks combined.
The global drowning prevention community is out to spread the word on identifying and escaping deadly #ripcurrents with a public awareness campaign today. Check out a documentary and study guide focused on rip current science and survival strategies from National Geographic and Australia’s Rob Brander, a global expert in the field from UNSW Sydney”. (from Global Health NOW Newsletter)

 


Association of Retinal Nerve Fiber Layer Thinning With Current and Future Cognitive Decline: A Study Using Optical Coherence Tomography – JAMA Neurology (free for a limited period)

Commentaries: Eye Sign of Dementia Risk? Thinning of Retinal Nerve Fiber Layer – MedicalResearch.com (free) AND Are the Eyes Windows to Early Dementia? – MedPage Today (free registration required)

“A thinner Retinal Nerve Fiber Layer is associated with worse cognitive function in individuals without a neurodegenerative disease as well as greater likelihood of future cognitive decline”.

 


Breathing Tubes Fail to Save Many Older Patients – The New York Times (10 articles per month are free)

“One-third of patients over age 65 die in the hospital after they are put on ventilators. Doctors are beginning to wonder if the procedure should be used so often”.

 


To Fight Burnout, Organize – New England Journal of Medicine (free)

“The social determinants of health — and physicians’ sense of powerlessness in the face of them — seem crucially missing from the discussion of burnout”.

 


E-cigarettes, Juuls and Heat-Not-Burn Devices: The Science and Regulation of Vaping – Hopkins Bloomberg Public Health Magazine (free)

E-cigarettes can help some people quit smoking but may entice others to start. So how should they be regulated?

 


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