FDA Approves Sale of Prescription Placebo

December 8, 2006
FDA Approves Sale of Prescription Placebo

Believe it or not…Have a great weekend.

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Outbreak: Toxic Tacos

December 7, 2006
Outbreak: Toxic Tacos

Update 12/12/06  Download new NY DOH Alert

Several Taco Bell restaurants in our area have been shut down recently due to an outbreak of E. Coli O157:H7.  At least 22 people are infected, and most are under age 18.  Interestingly, at least 2 Taco Bell employees have been found to carry the bacteria but are asymptomatic.

The vector is usually undercooked infected meat.  Symptoms usually present within 3-4 days of ingestion. The department of health has issued a warning to physicians to consider this diagnosis if…

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How do you approach a patient with asymptomatic primary hyperparathyroidism?

December 6, 2006
How do you approach a patient with asymptomatic primary hyperparathyroidism?

56 year old  Hispanic female with a history of hypertension, type 2 diabetes on oral medications, hyperlipidemia  and normal renal function. Over the past 2 years she has been noted to have mild hypercalcemia (11.0-11.5) on several basic metabolic panels. On her last visit, intact PTH was checked and was elevated at 66 (normal range 7-57). In patients such as this, with apparent asymptomatic primary hyperparathyroidism, what further diagnostic tests should be done and in whom is surgery indicated?…

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As Power Shifts in Washington…

December 5, 2006
As Power Shifts in Washington…

In the summer of 2002, I worked in DC for the Pharmaceutical Researchers and Manufacturers of America (PHRMA), which is an umbrella organization that represents the largest pharmaceutical companies.  It was the height of Republican power and PHRMA lobbyists were at the forefront of influencing the policy debate.   One of the crowning achievements of the Bush’s domestic policy was the Medicare prescription drug benefit.  Passed in 2003 at an initial cost of…

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Pfizer Shutting Lights on ILLUMINATE Study

December 4, 2006
Pfizer Shutting Lights on ILLUMINATE Study

Low HDL is a well known independent risk factor for atherosclerotic disease.  As a result, there have been several attempts to develop medications to raise HDL.  Specific targets include the inhibition of cholesteryl ester transfer protein, which plays an essential role in HDL metabolism by facilitating the transfer of cholesterol esters from HDL cholesterol to apolipoprotein B-containing lipoproteins.

Pfizer created just that drug.  Known as Torcetrapib, it was seen as a promising therapeutic to increase HDL and potentially…

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Call For Content

December 2, 2006
Call For Content

Send us your clinical questions…Please include a brief case presentation with any focused clinical questions about management or next steps in diagnosis.  These questions will then be sent to one of our esteemed faculty for a response to be posted on Clinical Correlations…it's your chance to be famous and make your name in cyberspace.  If you prefer anonymous posting we can also do it that way.

Send all cases/questions to neil.shapiro@med.va.gov

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Links: An Example of a Prolific Medical Blogger

December 1, 2006
Links: An Example of a Prolific Medical Blogger

If you want to get a look at what else is going on in the medical blogosphere you should spend some time at this site.  This blog Kevin M.D. is created by a practicing internal medicine physician.  It's updated several times a day mostly with stories from the media regarding malpractice, politics and the pharamceutical industry.  It's a bit less clinically oriented than other medical blogs, but always makes for an interesting read. 

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Fast Facts-Rheumatology

November 30, 2006
Fast Facts-Rheumatology

Bellevue Morning Report Teaching Points 11/27

CC: Left knee swelling and pain x 1 week

54 yo male without past medical history in his usual state of health until 5 weeks prior when he had painful ejaculation and intermittent dysuria, denies penile discharge. Treated for a urinary tract infection with unknown antibiotic. 3 weeks later develops recurrent symptoms and again treated with another course of unknown abx by outside physician. However he develops left knee pain and swelling and is unable to…

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