Systems

Does Stress Cause Stress Ulcers? The Etiology and Pathophysiology of Stress Ulcers

August 22, 2012
Does Stress Cause Stress Ulcers? The Etiology and Pathophysiology of Stress Ulcers

Sara-Megumi Naylor, MD

Faculty Peer Reviewed

When Warren and Marshall were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 2005 for their work on Helicobacter pylori and peptic ulcer disease , a long-standing controversy concerning the major cause of peptic ulcers was settled. They are not due to the reasons—spicy food, excessive coffee consumption, poor sleep, a stressful lifestyle—that we have heard from relatives and perhaps believed over the years. It is now well accepted that the leading causes of peptic ulcers are infection…

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Omega-3 Fatty Acids and Atherosclerosis

August 17, 2012
Omega-3 Fatty Acids and Atherosclerosis

By Michael Malone

Faculty Peer Reviewed

Omega-3 long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) have been popularized in recent years as beneficial nutrients with cardioprotective effects. Omega-3 PUFAs are so named because of a double bond between the 3rd and 4th carbon of the polycarbon chain. They are “poly-unsaturated” with hydrogen atoms, as their carbon chains contain multiple double bonds. Three omega-3 long chain PUFAs are typically discussed in the context of medical therapy, the first being alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). ALA is an essential precursor omega-3…

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Xopenex: Is it worth the money?

August 16, 2012
Xopenex: Is it worth the money?

By Han Na Kim

Faculty Peer Reviewed

Case:

The patient is a 50-year-old woman with history of steroid-dependent, severe, persistent asthma since childhood and coronary artery disease who presented with dyspnea and URI symptoms admitted for management of asthma exacerbation. Patient received nebulized albuterol treatment every two to four hours, and on hospital day two, patient developed persistent sinus tachycardia to heart rate of 120s believed to be secondary to albuterol therapy. Given her tachycardia, would it be safer to prescribe levalbuterol rather than…

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Should I Consider Antibiotics in My Patient with Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

July 26, 2012
Should I Consider Antibiotics in My Patient with Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

By Jason Chalifoux

Faculty Peer Review

The story of a patient with multiple office visits due to uncontrolled abdominal pain, bloating and diarrhea/constipation is common among primary care doctors and gastroenterologists. The workup is often extensive and rules out many etiologies. After discovering no metabolic, inflammatory, or anatomic pathology, physicians use the Rome III criteria to diagnose irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). IBS is a functional bowel disorder that is diagnosed by symptoms of recurrent abdominal pain or discomfort for at least 3 days per month…

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Bystander CPR: How Much Does It Help?

July 18, 2012
Bystander CPR: How Much Does It Help?

By Andrew L. Weinstein

Faculty Peer Reviewed

You have just completed a certification course in basic life support and are competent at performing cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) using chest compressions, a CPR mask, a bag-valve mask with impedance threshold device, and an automated external defibrillator (AED), all interventions recommended by the American Heart Association (AHA) to improve circulation following a sudden cardiac arrest. On your way home from the training center you see a man collapse and rush over to find him unresponsive, not breathing, and…

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Mystery Quiz- The Answer

June 29, 2012

Vivian Hayashi MD and Robert Smith MD, Mystery Quiz Section Editors

The answer to the mystery quiz is thymoma associated with myasthenia gravis. The clue to the case is the intermittent dysphagia and chewing difficulty. If one considers myasthenia in the differential, then an otherwise grossly normal appearing chest radiograph may be viewed more closely, with attention directed to the upper, anterior mediastinum. The chest radiograph shows the ascending aorta (image 3, arrow); on the lateral film, the retrosternal space, which normally contains air, appears…

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Mystery Quiz

June 19, 2012
Mystery Quiz

Vivian Hayashi MD and Robert Smith MD, Mystery Quiz Section Editors

The patient is a 61 year old man admitted to the psychiatry service for depression. During the hospitalization the patient reported a three year history of dysphagia and occasional right sided chest pain not clearly associated with exertion. He first noted difficulty chewing and swallowing turkey on Thanksgiving Day. The symptoms were intermittent thereafter and involved solid foods but not liquids. His chewing and swallowing difficulty abated for a year but returned one year…

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Gout: A Disease of the Blessed or a Blessing in Disguise?

June 8, 2012
Gout: A Disease of the Blessed or a Blessing in Disguise?

By Krithiga Sekar

Faculty Peer Reviewed

“The patient goes to bed and sleeps quietly until about two in the morning when he is awakened by a pain which usually seizes the great toe, but sometimes the heel, the calf of the leg or the ankle… so exquisitely painful as not to endure the weight of the clothes nor the shaking of the room from a person walking briskly therein.”

—Thomas Sydenham  (1683)

Gout, an excruciatingly painful but relatively benign form of arthritis in the…

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American College of Cardiology 2012

May 29, 2012
American College of Cardiology 2012

By Steven Sedlis, MD

The 2012 Scientific Sessions of the American College of Cardiology were held from March 24-27, 2012 in Chicago. This is always a great city for a conference —terrific restaurants, museums and parks—it almost makes you feel as though you are in New York. The McCormick Place Convention Center is another attraction—it is well laid out and easy to navigate. It allows participants to freely move from session to session spending time on what interests them most. The ACC meetings are also…

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Breaking News: The Downfall of the PSA

May 23, 2012
Breaking News: The Downfall of the PSA

The United States Preventive Services Task Force stands their ground in this week’s Annals of Internal Medicine and recommends against the routine use of the PSA as a screening tool for prostate cancer. This Class D recommendation is grounded in data that suggests a “very small” mortality benefit at the risk of significant over-diagnosis and unnecessary treatment. The PSA should still be used to follow response to treatment in those already diagnosed with prostate cancer. This recommendation has already set off a media frenzy and…

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Should Patients With Nephrotic Syndrome Receive Anticoagulation?

May 9, 2012
Should Patients With Nephrotic Syndrome Receive Anticoagulation?

By Jennifer Mulliken

Faculty Peer Reviewed

Case 1:

A 30-year-old African-American male with a history of bilateral pulmonary emboli presents with a 1-week history of bilateral lower extremity edema. Blood pressure is 138/83, cholesterol 385, LDL 250, albumin 2.9. Urinalysis shows 3+ protein. Twenty-four hour urinary protein is 7.2 grams.

Case 2:

A 47-year-old Hispanic male with a history of mild hypertension and venous insufficiency presents with a 3-month history of bilateral lower extremity edema. BP is 146/95, cholesterol 241, LDL 165, albumin 1.9.…

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Nothing QT (Cute) about it: rethinking the use of the QT interval to evaluate risk of drug induced arrhythmias

April 27, 2012
Nothing QT (Cute) about it: rethinking the use of the QT interval to evaluate risk of drug induced arrhythmias

By Aneesh Bapat, MD

Faculty Peer Reviewed

Perhaps it’s the French name, the curvaceous appearance on electrocardiogram (EKG), or its elusive and mysterious nature, but Torsades des pointes, a polymorphic ventricular arrhythmia, is certainly the sexiest of all ventricular arrhythmias. Very few physicians and scientists can explain its origin in an early afterdepolarization (EAD), and fewer still can explain its “twisting of the points” morphology on EKG. Despite its rare occurrence (only 761 cases reported to the WHO Drug Monitoring Center between 1983 and 1999)1,…

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