September 2, 2009 |
An implantable device that shocks an erratically beating heart and works to keep both ventricles beating synchronously reduced hospitalizations for heart failure by 41%, according to results reported Tuesday at the European Society of Cardiology Congress in Barcelona, Spain. The results, reported online in the New England Journal of Medicine, were significantly better than preliminary results announced in June, when the trial was halted prematurely because of its success. "This is a real breakthrough" for patients with mild to moderate heart disease, said Dr. Leslie Saxon, a cardiologist at USC's Keck School of Medicine, one of the study sites.
August 9, 2009 |
The abrupt shutdown of two aging nuclear reactors that produce a radioisotope widely used in medical imaging has forced physicians in the U.S. and abroad into a crisis, requiring them to postpone or cancel necessary scans for heart disease and cancer, or turn to alternative tests that are not as accurate, take longer and expose patients to higher doses of radiation. Because of limits on testing produced by the shortage, some patients will undergo heart or cancer surgeries that could have been prevented by imaging, and others will miss needed surgeries because of the lack of testing, said Dr. Michael Graham of the University of Iowa, president of SNM, formerly the Society of Nuclear Medicine.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 10, 2009 |
The California Nurses Assn. filed a complaint with state regulators Thursday alleging that UC Irvine Medical Center has been using faulty pain control pumps that have caused at least five patients to receive an accidental overdose of narcotics.
March 27, 2009 |
Thousands of military veterans are waiting to find out if they were exposed to infectious diseases by government clinics that performed colonoscopies and other procedures with equipment that wasn't properly sterilized. Veterans Affairs spokeswoman Katie Roberts said officials are working to determine if mistakes that may have exposed patients to infections at medical centers in Tennessee and Florida and a clinic in Georgia could have happened at other VA facilities too. The VA recently warned some veterans who had colonoscopies as far back as five years ago at its hospitals in Murfreesboro, Tenn.
November 15, 2008 |
Don't place headphones for portable MP3 music players in your front shirt pocket or drape them over your shoulder if you've got a pacemaker or defibrillators, says a Harvard scientist. The results can be shocking. There was detectable interference for 15% of pacemaker patients and 30% of those with defibrillators when headphones, including those for Apple Inc.'s iPod and iPhone, were placed within an inch of the heart devices, according to a study reported Sunday at the American Heart Assn.
September 24, 2008 |
The government paid more than $1 billion in questionable Medicare claims for medical supplies that showed little relation to patients' conditions, including blood glucose strips for sexual impotence and special diabetic shoes for leg amputees, congressional investigators say. Billions more in taxpayer dollars may have been wasted over the last decade because the government-run health program for the elderly and disabled paid out claims with blank or invalid diagnosis codes, such as a "?"