A study published in IEEE Transactions on Medical Imaging demonstrated that a three-modality method of fusion imaging yields comprehensive, real-time guidance during surgeries. The researchers added photoacoustic imaging to real-time ultrasound and pre-acquired magnetic resonance images, and integrated the modalities with an optical tracking-based navigation subsystem for concurrent display.
Mechanical properties of tissue can be calculated with shear-wave imaging, and the modality can be used as an operator-independent way to diagnose some forms of Achilles tendinopathy, according to a small study presented at the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine annual meeting. The method was associated with 92% sensitivity and 83% specificity in detecting moderate to severe Achilles tendinopathy, reported Dr. Michael Llewellyn of the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health.
Of 43 infants with Zika-related microcephaly in Colombia and Venezuela, 88% and 12% developed macular or optic nerve abnormalities and congenital glaucoma, respectively, according to a study in JAMA Ophthalmology. The results should prompt evaluations for ophthalmic findings for all babies with Zika-linked microcephaly, researchers said.
A Technavio report predicts the worldwide market for medical imaging software will be worth more than $4.8 billion by 2021, with a 7% compound annual growth rate. Market growth will be driven by successful research and development, increased disease prevalence, an aging population and continued technological improvements, according to the report.
Performing a security risk assessment is the first step toward keeping patient data secure from hacking and cyberattacks, and certain federal programs require annual risk assessments, experts say. Encrypting data, controlling access and using two-factor authentication are among the best ways to ensure data security, experts note.
Relatively few women in developing countries seek prenatal care, putting themselves and their fetus at risk for complications and transmission of HIV, hepatitis B or syphilis. Advertising free antenatal ultrasound imaging on the radio boosted attendance at prenatal-health clinics by 490% in Uganda, according to a study published in PLOS One.
The US Preventive Services Task Force published updated guidelines in the Journal of the American Medical Association that call for all pregnant women to undergo routine blood pressure monitoring at every prenatal visit to screen for preeclampsia, regardless of whether they have a history of preeclampsia or high blood pressure. Separate guidelines call for pregnant women with a higher risk of preeclampsia to take low-dose aspirin after 12 weeks of pregnancy.
Safety-net hospitals received disproportionate penalties and payment adjustments in the Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program and the Hospital Value-Based Purchasing program, compared with other hospitals, according to a study in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The study found safety-net hospitals are closing the gap, however, and noted better performance in the HRRP program was linked to reduced readmission rates for heart failure and pneumonia.
An amendment to Republican health care legislation proposes letting states seek waivers to opt out of the Affordable Care Act's community rating requirements, but they would have to have a high-risk pool available for consumers with pre-existing conditions, according to legislative text circulated by House Republicans. States could also seek waivers to opt out of essential health benefits requirements, and states applying for waivers would only need to meet one of numerous possible criteria, such as increasing choice of plans or reducing premiums.