Health Updates 1 September 2011

  • Study finds MRSA bacteria lingers on doctors’, nurses’ clothing: “Not washing hands frequently enough could contribute to the pervasiveness of bacteria, the authors wrote, adding that bacteria could be transmitted to patients by other means, not just through clothing.  They also noted that although most doctors and nurses in the study thought of their uniforms as fairly clean, that wasn’t always the case.” (LA Times)
  • Venus Williams pulls out of US Open, revealing her diagnosis of Sjogren’s Syndrome: “According to the Sjogren’s Syndrome Foundation website, the disease is a chronic autoimmune illness in which people’s white blood cells attack their moisture-producing glands.  Common symptoms include dry eyes and dry mouth.  As many as 4 million Americans have the disease.” (Associated Press)
  • World’s first clinical trial of stroke treatment via brain stem cells is set to move to next phase: “An independent assessment of the first three patients to have had stem cells injected into their brains at Glasgow’s Southern General Hospital has concluded it has had no adverse effect.  The assessment paves the way for the therapy to be tested on more patients to find a new treatment for stroke.  The hope is that the stem cells will help to repair damaged brain tissue.” (BBC)
  • Rotavirus vaccine prevents diarrhea in older kids, too: “Immunization of infants with the rotavirus vaccine has not only reduced the incidence of disease in the youngest patients, but also had the surprising consequence of reducing the incidence of diarrhea in older age groups, a national US analysis found….The researchers then estimated that 66,030 hospitalizations in patients younger than 25 had been prevented by the vaccine – with a cost saving of about $204 million.  This cost saving was considerably greater than what had been expected.  ‘We have estimated substantially larger cost savings because we have detected averted hospitalizations in unvaccinated groups including older children and adults, a benefit that was not foreseen and therefore not included in previous analyses’….”. (Nancy Walsh, MedPage Today)

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