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Breathing self-management programme improves quality of life in asthma

23 Jan 2018

A breathing retraining exercise programme, incorporating a training DVD and accompanying booklet, achieved similar improvements in quality of life scores as conventional face to face training in patients with asthma, in a UK study.

Self-taken swabs can detect bacterial vaginosis and candidiasis

23 Jan 2018Registered users

Lower vaginal swabs taken by patients are as reliable as high vaginal swabs taken by clinicians for the detection of vulvovaginal candidiasis or bacterial vaginosis, a UK study has shown.

Triple antiplatelet therapy no better than standard regimens after ischaemic stroke

23 Jan 2018Registered users

Intensive antiplatelet therapy with three agents did not reduce the incidence and severity of recurrent stroke or transient ischaemic attack (TIA) but did significantly increase the risk of major bleeding in the TARDIS study.

Benzodiazepines and Z-drugs are being widely used long term

23 Jan 2018Registered users

A UK primary care survey has found that many patients are taking benzodiazepines or Z-drugs, recommended for short-term use, for at least a year.

Referral to a commercial type 2 diabetes prevention programme can stop progression to diabetes

20 Dec 2017Paid-up subscribers

Patients with non-diabetic hyperglycaemia referred by their GP to a Weight Watchers diabetes prevention programme had a significantly reduced risk of developing diabetes, a UK study has found.

Position during second stage of labour may influence spontaneous vaginal delivery rates

20 Dec 2017Paid-up subscribers

Nulliparous women, undergoing epidural analgesia, who adopted a lying down position were more likely to achieve a spontaneous vaginal delivery than those in an upright position during the second stage of labour, a UK study has found.

Are differing emotional responses to alcohol associated with choice of drink?

20 Dec 2017Paid-up subscribers

Emotional responses to drinking appear to vary according to the type of drink imbibed and differ between men and women, an analysis of data from the Global Drug Survey (GDS) has found.

Heavy drinking and smoking associated with visible signs of ageing

20 Dec 2017Paid-up subscribers

The risk of developing age-related visible signs, such as arcus cornea and earlobe crease, was higher in smokers and heavy drinkers in a prospective study from Denmark.

Dyspareunia in women associated with physical and mental health conditions

23 Nov 2017Paid-up subscribers

The third National Survey of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles in Britain (Natsal-3) has found a strong association between women reporting painful sex and poor physical health and depressive symptoms.

Depression not associated with poor glycaemic control in new diabetes cases

23 Nov 2017Paid-up subscribers

Neither depression nor diabetes distress appear to be related to glycaemic control in newly diagnosed patients with type 2 diabetes, the results of a UK prospective cohort study suggest. However, depressive symptoms at diabetes diagnosis were associated with a higher risk of macrovascular complications, notably myocardial infarction (MI) at two years’ follow-up.

Mortality risk raised during induction with methadone in opioid substitution therapy

23 Nov 2017Paid-up subscribers

Patients undergoing opioid substitution treatment have an increased mortality risk during the induction phase with methadone but not with buprenorphine, a meta-analysis has found. Mortality risk is also raised in the period immediately after leaving treatment with both drugs.

Exercise can prevent depression

23 Nov 2017Paid-up subscribers

If healthy adults exercise for a minimum of an hour each week, their risk of incident depression can be reduced by 12%, a Norwegian prospective cohort study has found. 

Depression in midlife does not raise risk of dementia

23 Oct 2017Registered users

Depression may be a prodromal feature of, rather than a risk factor for, dementia, a UK prospective cohort study has found. A total of 10,308 participants (6,895 men) in the Whitehall ll study, aged 35-55 at recruitment, were followed up between 1985 and 2015. 

Chocolate may lower risk of atrial fibrillation

22 Sep 2017Registered users

Eating chocolate regularly may reduce the risk of atrial fibrillation (AF), the results of a large population-based prospective cohort study suggest.  

Moderate alcohol consumption may affect cognitive function

22 Sep 2017Registered users

Even moderate alcohol consumption, compared with abstinence, may raise the risk of hippocampal atrophy and faster decline in lexical fluency, an analysis of data from the Whitehall ll study has found.

Incretin-based diabetes therapy not associated with increased mortality

28 Jul 2017Registered users

A recent meta-analysis, published in the BMJ, has shown no increase in all cause mortality in patients with type 2 diabetes using incretin-based treatments i.e. GLP-1 agonists and DPP-4 inhibitors.

High maternal BMI linked to increasing risk of congenital abnormalities

28 Jul 2017Registered users

The risk of major congenital malformations in infants rises with maternal overweight and degree of obesity, a large study from Sweden has shown.

Should lithium treatment be continued during pregnancy?

28 Jul 2017Registered users

Women who take lithium during early pregnancy have a slightly increased risk of giving birth to a child with a cardiac malformation, a large retrospective cohort study from the USA has found.

Risk of suicide in university students double that of graduates

22 Jun 2017Registered users

Compared with those who have completed university education, university students are more than twice as likely to commit suicide, a Swedish study has found.

Termination of pregnancy via telemedicine service safe and effective

22 Jun 2017Registered users

Women using an online telemedicine service for medical termination of pregnancy (MTOP) reported good outcomes, a study has found.Women using an online telemedicine service for MTOP reported good outcomes, a study has found. The study authors analysed data on all women from the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland who contacted the Women on Web telemedicine helpdesk, between January 2010 and December 2012. (In both countries termination is not available through the formal healthcare system except in restricted circumstances).

Gambling linked to mental health problems

22 Jun 2017Registered users

Patients with depression and those who drink at risky levels are more than twice as likely to report gambling problems, a UK primary care study has shown.

Drinking tea every day may lower risk of ischaemic heart disease

22 Jun 2017Registered users

Daily tea consumption was associated with an 8% relative risk reduction in ischaemic heart disease and a 10% relative risk reduction in major cardiac events, in a large prospective study from China.

Chlamydia and HIV testing for young people in primary care

22 Jun 2017Registered users

Young men and women would be happy to be offered chlamydia screening, contraception and HIV tests from GPs, a UK study has shown.

Homelessness is an independent risk factor for mortality

01 Jun 2009Registered users

Although the higher mortality risk associated with homelessness can partly be explained by an increased prevalence of morbidity, homelessness itself confers an additional risk, a retrospective cohort study has shown. 'In this study, homelessness itself has been shown to be an independent risk factor for the high mortality seen in this group. In addition to interventions addressing morbidity in homeless people, intensive targeted social interventions directed to homelessness itself may be needed to lower mortality in this highly disadvantaged social group.'

Stroke risk similar in paroxysmal and sustained AF

23 Jan 2008Registered users

Current guidelines advise treating paroxysmal AF in the same way as sustained AF but the evidence is weak, with only one retrospective analysis comparing the risk of stroke in patients with paroxysmal AF vs chronic AF (analysis of the SPAF trials, performed 15 years ago and limited to patients treated with aspirin). The ACTIVE W trial showed that warfarin is more effective than aspirin plus clopidogrel for the prevention of vascular events (stroke, embolism, MI and vascular death) in patients with AF. A recent substudy of this trial looked at the risk of stroke in 1,202 patients with paroxysmal AF compared with 5,495 with sustained AF, and the effectiveness of thromboprophylaxis in these patients. ' This substudy has shown that the risk of stroke is similar, irrespective of whether AF is paroxysmal or sustained, and that anticoagulation therapy is equally effective in both groups. Other factors, such as age and cardiovascular comorbidity, remain central to the ultimate choice of thromboprophylaxis in these patients.'