Data analysis supports early ICU tracheostomy | Researchers to assess efficacy of clotting drug in trauma patients | Q&A: Intensivist describes work, evolution of profession
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July 22, 2014
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Data analysis supports early ICU tracheostomy
Data from 15 clinical trials found ICU patients who need mechanical ventilation had better outcomes with an early tracheostomy, compared with those who did not have the procedure or had it later in their stay, researchers reported. The study in Lancet Respiratory Medicine found patients who had an early tracheostomy had a lower risk of all-cause mortality in the ICU and attained mobility sooner. Medscape (free registration)/Reuters (7/21)
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Researchers to assess efficacy of clotting drug in trauma patients
Experts at the University of Pittsburgh are planning a trial to assess whether the clotting agent tranexamic acid can control internal bleeding and improve survival among severely injured patients during helicopter transport. Because patients with traumatic injuries are usually unable to agree to participate in a trial, the study will be performed under a federally authorized exception to informed consent standards. WESA-FM (Pittsburgh) (7/21)
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Medicine in the News
Study: Dangerous, drug-resistant infections spike in Southeast
Researchers report a fivefold increase in the number of infections caused by carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae in Southeastern community hospitals. The study identified more than 300 cases and found that nearly all stemmed from health care issues such as greater use of broad-spectrum antibiotics and transmission between community and long-term acute care facilities. The data were reported in the journal Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology. HealthDay News (7/18)
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Hospital execs report growing inpatient volume
Inpatient volume was up 0.4% during the second quarter of 2014, according to a survey of hospital leaders by investment banking firm Jefferies. Respondents in states that have expanded Medicaid eligibility saw greater inpatient volume increases and were more likely to see growth in emergency department volume. BeckersHospitalReview.com (7/21)
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Trends and Technology
Study: Lifesaving medtech saves money, too
Medical technology, including imaging tools, offsets the high cost of disease by some $23 billion annually, according to a Milken Institute report. Researchers evaluated medical technology for heart disease, colorectal cancer, diabetes and musculoskeletal disease, and they found that services including echocardiography resulted in cost savings and health benefits. AuntMinnie.com (free registration) (7/18)
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Drug safety program mines medical records for adverse events
The federal government is spending $116 million on a project called Mini-Sentinel, which mines the medical billing records of some 180 million Americans to find adverse drug events. Some critics say billing data are not specific enough to reveal side effects. Another drug safety program initiated by Congress and funded by drugmakers is studying how to use large databases to study drug safety. National Public Radio/Shots blog (7/21)
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