MRI study suggests differences in migraine sufferers' brain structure | Adiponectin measures indicate pain severity, study suggests | Gulf War illness symptoms linked to axial diffusivity in study
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March 27, 2013
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MRI study suggests differences in migraine sufferers' brain structure
Italian researchers conducted MRI scans on 63 migraine patients and 18 controls, and found smaller, less thick cortices among those with a history of the headaches. The precise locations of cortex differences varied between those with aura migraines and those without. The findings appear in the journal Radiology. HealthDay News (3/26)
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Adiponectin measures indicate pain severity, study suggests
A small study that included 20 women with migraines found that adiponectin measures could predict pain severity and treatment response, Johns Hopkins University researchers reported in the journal Headache. Ratios of high-to-low molecular weight adiponectin could be tied to severity of pain, indicating the potential for use as a migraine biomarker and drug target. MedPage Today (free registration) (3/20)
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Gulf War illness symptoms linked to axial diffusivity in study
Pain, hyperalgesia and fatigue common in veterans with Gulf War syndrome appear to be linked to axial diffusivity in the right inferior fronto-occipital fasciculus, researchers reported in PLOS One. Georgetown University researchers used functional MRIs for diffusion tensor imaging in 51 people with illness and controls. PhysiciansBriefing.com/HealthDay News (3/25)
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Treatment News
Many back-pain patients may be getting unnecessary MRI scans
Researchers looked at 2,000 requests for lower-back and head MRIs in Canada and found that more than half of the lower-back scan requests were either inappropriate or of uncertain value for the patient. Eighty-three percent of the head scans were deemed appropriate. The findings, published online in JAMA Internal Medicine, suggest the need for more dialogue about diagnostic imaging and its implications, said Johns Hopkins Medicine's Dr. Frederick Korley, who was not involved in the study. Reuters (3/25), Calgary Herald (Alberta) (3/26)
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PRP therapy relieves elbow pain better than other care in study
Platelet-rich plasma therapy may relieve pain associated with chronic tennis elbow up to six months following the treatment, according to a study of 230 patients reported at an orthopedic surgeons' meeting. Twelve weeks after treatment, patients who received the treatment reported 55% improvement in pain scores, compared with about 47% for patients who received standard treatment. At six months, platelet treatment was associated with 72% improvement in pain scores, compared with about 56% in the comparison group. DailyRx.com (3/21)
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Policy & Trends
5 changes to improve cancer treatment
An essay by Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel and other oncology professionals calls for five changes in how cancer care is delivered to reduce costs and improve quality, beginning with a switch from fee-for-service to bundled payments. The group, writing in The New York Times, called for insurers to give physicians spending data to enable care delivery comparisons. Also needed are the implementation of quality tracking, better incentives for research and "high-touch" cancer care clinics that address symptoms before emergency care is needed. The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (3/23)
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APS News
APS 32nd Annual Scientific Meeting: Last day to save $100 off registration
Attend APS's 32nd Annual Scientific Meeting to experience a variety of educational offerings featuring interactive workshops and symposia, including three corporate satellite luncheon symposia beginning Thursday, May 9. The first symposium, "Unmet Needs in the Treatment of Chronic Pain," will identify issues regarding the use of opioids in pain management and opportunities to improve patient care and is supported by Zogenix. "The 4 P's of Pain" will focus on the current opioid crisis and how legislation and patient care has changed. This symposium is funded by Nektar Therapeutics. Supported by Pfizer, "The Appropriate Use of Opioids Medications and the Role of Abuse-Deterrent Formulations" will teach the tactics to support the safer use of opioid medications on Friday, May 10. The early-bird discount ends today! Register now to save $100 off your registration fee! Learn more.
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REMS for analgesic opioids continuing education course
APS and the Collaborative for REMS Education (CO*RE) will present a free CE course on Saturday, May 11, in New Orleans at APS's 32nd Annual Scientific Meeting. This REMS course will provide you with information needed to effectively assess the pain patient, develop a safe treatment plan, assess for risk of opioid abuse, and plan for ongoing assessment of the patient. APS encourages you to attend so that you can safely and effectively prescribe extended-release/long-acting opioids to your patients. This course is offered as a separate, no-cost session at the 32nd Annual Scientific Meeting. Learn more.
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SmartQuote
To know oneself, one should assert oneself."
-- Albert Camus,
French author, journalist and philosopher
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