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Care home error rate of liquid medicine doses 4 times higher than pills

2011-02-08
Care home residents are more than four times as likely to get the wrong dose of medicine when it is in liquid form as they are when given pills/capsules provided in a dispenser, indicates research published online in BMJ Quality and Safety. Dispensers, known as monitored dosage systems or MDS for short, comprise a tray or cassette with compartments for one or more doses for a particular day or a given time. They are intended to simplify drug rounds for care home staff and cut the risk of mistakes. But swallowing difficulties mean that some elderly people need to take ...

As many as 3 in 4 hospital tests not followed up after discharge

2011-02-08
Up to three quarters of hospital tests are not being followed up, suggests a systematic review of international evidence, published in BMJ Quality and Safety. This failure can have serious implications for patients, including missed or delayed diagnoses and even death, the study shows. The authors base their findings on a systematic review of evidence published in English between 1990 and 2010, and available on reputable research databases. Analysis of the findings of the 12 studies which were suitable for inclusion indicated that between 20% and 61% of inpatient ...

Impact of FDA regulations restricting outdoor cigarette advertising near schools examined

2011-02-08
San Diego, CA, February 8, 2011 – When the FDA proposed new rules restricting outdoor tobacco advertising near schools and playgrounds in 2009, the tobacco industry argued that such rules would lead to a near complete ban on tobacco advertising in urban areas. An article in the March 2011 issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine shows that the effect of these rules would be less severe than the industry contends. "It is critical to point out one subtle, but important difference between the analysis that the tobacco industry conducted and the analysis presented ...

Psychotic illness appears to begin at younger age among those who use cannabis

2011-02-08
Cannabis use appears to be associated with an earlier onset of psychotic illness, according to a meta-analysis of previously published studies posted online today that will appear in the June print issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals. More than 16 million Americans use cannabis on a regular basis, most of whom began using this and other drugs during their teenage years, according to background information in the article. "There is little doubt about the existence of an association between substance use and psychotic illness. National ...

Contact with the criminal justice system may be associated with suicide risk

2011-02-08
Men and women who have had contact with the criminal justice system—even if they have never received a jail or prison sentence or a guilty verdict—appear to have a significantly higher rate of suicide than the general population, according to a report posted online today that will appear in the June print issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals. Most published research on suicide and the criminal justice system focuses on prisoners during their incarceration or soon after release, according to background information in the article. Few ...

Antipsychotics for schizophrenia associated with subtle loss in brain volume

2011-02-08
Patients with schizophrenia who take antipsychotic medications appear to lose a small but measurable amount of brain tissue over time, according to a report in the February issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals. Schizophrenia affects 1 percent of the worldwide population and remains a leading cause of chronic disability among young adults, according to background information in the article. Progressive changes in brain volume observed in patients with schizophrenia have been thought to be an effect of the disease. "However, recent ...

Use of atypical antipsychotics in treatment of dementia declined after FDA warning

2011-02-08
A warning issued by the Food and Drug Administration regarding the use of atypical antipsychotics for the treatment of dementia was associated with a significant decline in the use of these medications for treating dementia symptoms in elderly patients, according to a report in the February issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals. "In 2001, more than 70 percent of U.S. atypical antipsychotic prescriptions were written for off-label indications such as dementia, and atypical antipsychotics accounted for 82 percent of antipsychotic prescriptions ...

Relatively few young adults with autism spectrum disorders receive assistance after high school

2011-02-08
Use of medical, mental health and case management services for young adults with an autism spectrum disorder appears to decline after high school, according to a report in the February issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals. "The number of young adults in the United States diagnosed as having an autism spectrum disorder is increasing rapidly as ever-larger cohorts of children identified as having an autism spectrum disorder age through adolescence," according to background information in the article. "Regardless of the ...

Indoor coal use associated with possible impairment of early childhood growth

2011-02-08
Children raised in homes using indoor coal for cooking or heating appear to be about a half-inch shorter at age 36 months than those in households using other fuel sources, according to a report posted online today that will appear in the June print issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals. "Use of coal for indoor heating is widely prevalent in some countries, exposing millions of people to indoor air pollution from coal smoke," the authors write as background information in the article. "Coal combustion emits chemicals ...

Kinship caregivers receive less support than foster parents despite lower socioeconomic status

2011-02-08
Children placed with a relative after being removed from their home for maltreatment have fewer behavioral and social skills problems than children in foster care, but may have a higher risk for substance use and pregnancy as teenagers, according to a report in the February issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals. These relatives—known as kinship caregivers—appear more likely to be single, unemployed, older, and live in poorer households, yet receive fewer support services than do foster caregivers. Most children who are ...

Normal air could halve fuel consumption

2011-02-08
Air hybrids, or pneumatic hybrids as they are also known, are not yet in production. Nonetheless, electric cars and electric hybrid cars already make use of the brake energy, to power a generator that charges the batteries. However, according to Per Tunestål, a researcher in Combustion Engines at Lund University in Sweden, air hybrids would be much cheaper to manufacture. The step to commercialisation does not have to be a large one. "The technology is fully realistic. I was recently contacted by a vehicle manufacturer in India which wanted to start making air hybrids", ...

Facebook users more prone to developing eating disorders

2011-02-08
The same has been found with regard to exposure to music and fashion on the Internet, and to harmful programs on TV. The study also reveals that the risk of developing eating disorders in adolescent girls is moderated when there is more parental supervision over viewing habits. The more time adolescent girls spend in front of Facebook, the more their chances of developing a negative body image and various eating disorders, such as anorexia, bulimia and exaggerated dieting. This has been shown in a new study from the University of Haifa. Eating disorders include a wide ...

Less radical tumor surgery can offer better long-term kidney function

2011-02-08
Patients with kidney tumours larger than four centimetres are much more likely to enjoy good long-term renal function if they undergo nephron-sparing surgery rather than radical nephrectomy, according to a study in the February issue of the urology journal BJUI. Researchers from the Department of Urology at Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz, Germany, studied 166 patients for up 19 years, with a median follow up of five-and-a-half years. The participants were split into two groups - 81 "younger" patients up to 55 and 85 "older" patients aged 65 and over. They ...

A study analyzes science fiction in Spanish theater

A study analyzes science fiction in Spanish theater
2011-02-08
This release is available in Spanish. When we think of rapprochements with science fiction, almost instantly numerous references come to mind in the area of the narrative literature or film. Notwithstanding, since its origins until today, the literature of the theater has given a place to all types of genres and forms, including the genre of science fiction. That is the aim of this research, recently published in Insula, the most widely disseminated literary Hispanist review in the world. The study's author, Julio Enrique Checa, from the Department of Humanities: ...

Drug developed by Hebrew U. and others holds promise for treatment of wounds

Drug developed by Hebrew U. and others holds promise for treatment of wounds
2011-02-08
Jerusalem, February 7, 2011 -- A low cost, nanometer-sized drug to treat chronic wounds, such as diabetic foot ulcers or burns, has been developed by a group of scientists from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Harvard Medical School and others in the U.S. and Japan. Diabetes is a rapidly growing medical problem affecting close to 3 percent of the world's population. Poor blood circulation arising from diabetes often results in skin wounds which do not heal, causing pain, infection and at times amputation of limbs. Several proteins, called growth factors, have ...

Roaches inspire robotics

2011-02-08
Tel Aviv — Ask anyone who has ever tried to squash a skittering cockroach — they're masters of quick and precise movement. Now Tel Aviv University is using their maddening locomotive skills to improve robotic technology too. Prof. Amir Ayali of Tel Aviv University's Department of Zoology says the study of cockroaches has already inspired advanced robotics. Robots have long been based on these six-legged houseguests, whose nervous system is relatively straightforward and easy to study. But until now, walking machines based on the cockroach's movement have been influenced ...

Women with PCOS benefit from acupuncture and exercise

2011-02-08
Acupuncture and physical exercise improve hormone levels and menstrual bleeding pattern in women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), reveals research from the University of Gothenburg, Sweden. PCOS is a common disorder that affects up to 10% of all women of child-bearing age. Women with PCOS frequently have irregular ovulation and menstruation, with many small immature egg follicles in the ovaries. This causes the ovaries to produce more testosterone which, in turn, leads to troublesome hair growth and acne. Obesity, insulin resistance and cardiovascular disease are ...

Larger cities drive growing wage gap between the rich and the poor, study shows

Larger cities drive growing wage gap between the rich and the poor, study shows
2011-02-08
Why in the United States are the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer? Part of the answer lies in the unique economies of our larger cities, finds a study by Ronni Pavan of the University of Rochester and Nathaniel Baum-Snow of Brown University and the National Bureau of Economic Research. "Our results show that overall up to one-third of the growth in the wage gap between the rich and the poor is driven by city size independent of workers' skills," says Pavan. Using U.S. Census data and American Community Surveys from 1980 to 2007 across the entire ...

Math may help calculate way to find new drugs for HIV and other diseases

Math may help calculate way to find new drugs for HIV and other diseases
2011-02-08
Using mathematical concepts, Princeton researchers have developed a method of discovering new drugs for a range of diseases by calculating which physical properties of biological molecules may predict their effectiveness as medicines. The technique already has identified several potential new drugs that were shown to be effective for fighting strains of HIV by researchers at Johns Hopkins University. "The power of this is that it's a general method," said Princeton chemical and biological engineering professor Christodoulos Floudas, who led the research team. "It has ...

Urine-sniffing dogs: Early detection of prostate cancer

2011-02-08
Arnhem, The Netherlands, 7 February 2011 -- In the February 2011 issue of European Urology, Jean-Nicolas Cornu and colleagues reported the evaluation of the efficacy of prostate cancer (PCa) detection by trained dogs on human urine samples. In their article, the researchers affirm that volatiles organic compounds (VOCs) in urine have been proposed as cancer biomarkers. In the study, a Belgian Malinois shepherd was trained by the clicker training method (operant conditioning) to scent and recognize urine of people having PCa. All urine samples were frozen for preservation ...

Research proves new soybean meal sources are good fish meal alternatives

2011-02-08
Two new sources of soybean meal are capturing attention throughout the country. University of Illinois research indicates that fermented soybean meal and enzyme-treated soybean meal may replace fish meal in weanling pig diets. "The price of fish meal has exploded and is causing producers to search for new options for weanling pig diets," said Hans H. Stein, U of I professor of animal sciences. "Pigs are traditionally fed diets containing relatively large amounts of animal proteins such as fish meal from weaning up to 40 pounds when they can digest traditional soybean ...

Anthropologist: 'Body Worlds' visitors confront bodies but not death

Anthropologist: Body Worlds visitors confront bodies but not death
2011-02-08
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — In two new works, an anthropologist tackles a perplexing question relating to the enormously successful "Body Worlds" exhibits: How does society tolerate – and even celebrate – the public display of human corpses? "Body Worlds – The Original Exhibition of Real Human Bodies" is the most widely attended exhibit in the world, said Jane Desmond, a professor of anthropology at the University of Illinois and author of a paper and book chapter on the subject. While the exhibition has generated some controversy, its promoters have succeeded in presenting it ...

Lifestyle affects life expectancy more than genetics

2011-02-08
How long your parents lived does not affect how long you will live. Instead it is how you live your life that determines how old you will get, reveals research from the University of Gothenburg recently published in the Journal of Internal Medicine. It is often assumed that people with parents who lived to be very old are more likely to live to a grand old age themselves. "But that's just not true – our study shows that hereditary factors don't play a major role and that lifestyle has the biggest impact," says professor emeritus Lars Wilhelmsen, referring to the 1913 ...

Unexpected exoskeleton remnants found in Paleozoic fossils

2011-02-08
Washington, D.C.—Surprising new research shows that, contrary to conventional belief, remains of chitin-protein complex—structural materials containing protein and polysaccharide—are present in abundance in fossils of arthropods from the Paleozoic era. Previously the oldest molecular signature of chitin-protein complex was discovered in 25 million year old Cenozoic fossils and remnants of structural protein have also been discovered in 80 million-year-old Mesozoic fossils. Carnegie's George Cody and an international team of scientists discovered relicts of protein-chitin ...

Unexpected new mechanism behind rheumatoid arthritis

2011-02-08
A team of researchers at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, has identified an enzyme that protects against inflammation and joint destruction. Made when the researchers blocked production of the enzyme GGTase-I in transgenic mice, this unexpected discovery could lead to the identification of new mechanisms that control the development of inflammatory disorders, as well as new medicines. The article has been published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation (JCI). GGTase-I is found in all cells but is particularly important for the function of so-called CAAX proteins ...
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