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January 23, 2013
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  Top Story 
  • Skin problems among top reasons for visits to physicians
    Patients without acute conditions are most likely to see a doctor because of skin problems, according to a study in Mayo Clinic Proceedings. Nearly 43% of 142,377 patient records that researchers analyzed had an ICD-9 code for actinic keratosis, acne, sebaceous cysts or other skin conditions over a five-year period. Medscape (free registration) (1/22) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Clinical News 
  • Study finds slight increase in AMD risk with long-term use of aspirin
    People who regularly took aspirin for 10 to 15 years faced a slightly higher risk of developing age-related macular degeneration, according to a study of more than 2,300 people. The cardiovascular benefits of aspirin, however, outweigh the risk of macular degeneration, experts say. The study appeared online in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine. HealthDay News (1/21) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Study finds exercise after meals lowers triglyceride levels
    A small study from Japan found that people who took a brisk walk and did some resistance training one hour after a meal decreased the postprandial elevation of triglyceride levels by 72%, compared with a 25% reduction when the exercise was done before eating. The study was published in the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise. Medscape (free registration) (1/22) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Practice Management 
  • Digital communication may improve doctor-patient relationship
    A Televox report showed 85% of Americans regard digital forms of communication such as e-mail and text messages as being at least as useful as conversations with health professionals in person or over the telephone. Researchers also found 51% of those who had received text messages, voice mails or e-mails from their providers said they felt more valued as a patient. BeckersHospitalReview.com (1/22) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Ad-based EHRs save doctors money but raise practice concerns
    Advertising linked to electronic health records could help small physician practices afford to implement EHR systems but there are questions about whether advertising exerts undue influence on prescribing patterns, expert said. Patient privacy also is a concern due to possible mining of patient information for advertising purposes. EHR Intelligence (1/22) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Health Policy & Legislation 
  • House subcommittee leaders support repeal of SGR formula
    The Republican and Democrat leaders of the House Ways and Means Health Subcommittee say they want to see legislation to repeal the sustainable growth rate Medicare payment formula for physicians and replace it with a reliable system that rewards quality. Ranking Democrat Rep. Jim McDermott of Washington said physicians cannot "run their practices year after year under a cloud of threatened payment cuts." MedPage Today (free registration) (1/22) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Professional Issues & Trends 
  • Readmission trends analyzed for heart failure, MI and pneumonia
    Most 30-day readmissions for heart failure, acute myocardial infarction and pneumonia happened within 15 days of discharge, according to a report published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Heart failure was the most frequent reason for readmission for heart failure and MI patients, while recurrent pneumonia was the most common reason for readmission of pneumonia patients. Overall, the reasons for readmission were diverse, according to researchers, who cited a "heightened vulnerability of recently hospitalized patients to a broad spectrum of conditions." Nurse.com (1/22) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
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  SmartQuote 
Lend yourself to others, but give yourself to yourself."
--Michel de Montaigne,
French writer


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This news roundup is provided as a timely update to AAFP members and other health care professionals about family medicine topics in the news media. Links to articles are provided for the convenience of family physicians who may find them of use in discussions with patients or colleagues. Opinions expressed in AAFP SmartBrief are those of the identified authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions or policies of the American Academy of Family Physicians. On occasion, media articles may include or imply incorrect information about the AAFP and its policies, positions or relationships. For clarification on AAFP positions and policies, we refer you to http://aafp.org.

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