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Doctors Should Bone Up on CT Scan Cancer Risks

Posted 15 Jul 2016 by

FRIDAY, July 15, 2016 – Doctors routinely order CT scans as diagnostic tools. But many are ill-informed about the cancer risks associated with this imaging technology, a new study suggests. Patients who undergo CT scans are exposed to harmful ionizing radiation, which could affect their lifetime risk for developing cancer, Canadian researchers said. "Underestimating radiation dose from a CT scan ...

For Stroke Patients, Temporary Easing of Symptoms Can Be Deceiving

Posted 18 Feb 2016 by

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 17, 2016 – A quick improvement in symptoms before a stroke patient arrives at the hospital doesn't necessarily mean a better outcome, a new study finds. "Patients with very early rapid neurological improvement when first examined at the hospital still need to be considered for therapy to dissolve blood clots, given the high rate of unfavorable outcome," study author Dr. Clotilde ...

Slowed Walking in Seniors May Signal Alzheimer's Danger

Posted 2 Dec 2015 by

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 2, 2015 – Seniors who walk more slowly may have higher amounts of a protein linked to Alzheimer's in their brains, a small, new study suggests. Researchers found a modest association between higher levels of amyloid plaques – dense deposits of a protein known as beta amyloid – and slower walking speeds among older adults. "These results suggest that subtle walking disturbances, ...

Doctors Save Life of U.S. Child With Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis

Posted 16 Nov 2015 by

SUNDAY, Nov. 15, 2015 – A 5-year-old child from the United States, stricken at age 2 with a deadly form of tuberculosis after traveling to India, is finally in remission, researchers report. The case, one of only a handful reported in the medical literature, highlights the difficulties of treating an extensively drug-resistant form of tuberculosis, known as XDR TB, in children, the researchers ...

Tapeworm May Have Spread Cancer Cells to Colombian Man

Posted 4 Nov 2015 by

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 4, 2015 – Cancer cells transmitted from a common tapeworm appear to have caused cancer-like tumors in a Colombian man with HIV – the first known case of what's called "malignant transformation," U.S. health officials are reporting. The parasite – known as Hymenolepis nana, or the dwarf tapeworm – is the most common human tapeworm worldwide, particularly in developing nations. ...

CT Scans for Lung Cancer Turn Up Few False-Positives: Study

Posted 1 Oct 2015 by

THURSDAY, Oct. 1, 2015 – Recently, CT-based screening for lung cancer in long-term smokers has been recommended by experts, and the scans are now covered by Medicare and some private insurers. But will these scans result in too many false-positive findings, causing patients unnecessary surgeries and trauma? A new study suggests otherwise. Researchers at Lahey Hospital & Medical Center in ...

CT Scan Use in Children Dropped Over Past Decade

Posted 24 Aug 2015 by

MONDAY, Aug. 24, 2015 – Children are receiving fewer CT scans now than a decade ago, dovetailing with a move to radiation-free MRI scans and ultrasounds, a recent study shows. Though several reasons might explain the shift, the study's lead author, Dr. Michelle Parker, said the underlying reason may be a push to limit youngsters' exposure to radiation. "Over the time of our study, there has been ...

Cell Damage Occurs When People Have CT Scans: Study

Posted 22 Jul 2015 by

WEDNESDAY, July 22, 2015 – Cellular damage occurs when people undergo CT scans, but whether or not this causes cancer or any other health problems is unclear, a new study finds. "The use of medical imaging for heart disease has exploded in the past decade," study senior author Dr. Joseph Wu, director of the Stanford Cardiovascular Institute, said in a Stanford news release. "These tests expose ...

Lung Scans May Help Track Suspicious Masses, Study Says

Posted 23 Jun 2015 by

TUESDAY, June 23, 2015 – For people with noncancerous lung nodules, which are small masses of tissue, annual CT scans may be all that's needed to monitor their condition, a new study suggests. Such monitoring could potentially save people from unneeded treatments, the researchers said. "A safe approach that involves careful observation can safely be employed for the management of non-solid ...

Malpractice Fears Spurring Most ER Docs to Order Unnecessary Tests

Posted 24 Mar 2015 by

TUESDAY, March 24, 2015 – Nearly all emergency room doctors surveyed order pricey MRIs or CT scans their patients may not need, mainly because they fear malpractice lawsuits, according to a new report. Of 435 ER physicians who completed the survey, 97 percent admitted to ordering some advanced imaging scans that weren't medically necessary, the findings showed. Such scans contribute to the ...

CT Scans Might Spot Heart Risks More Clearly in Patients With Chest Pain

Posted 15 Mar 2015 by

SUNDAY, March 15, 2015 – New research suggests that CT scans may help doctors do a better job of diagnosing heart disease in patients with chest pain, compared to standard tests. A Scottish team found that CT scans seemed to spot more heart problems and allowed doctors to act to lower the risk of a heart attack. "A CT scan clarifies the diagnosis, changes treatments and may reduce the risk of a ...

Study Gauges Value of CT Scans for Heart Patients

Posted 15 Mar 2015 by

SATURDAY, March 14, 2015 – In the first head-to-head study of its kind, researchers say that CT scans may offer some advantages over traditional "functional stress tests" for people with symptoms of heart disease. As explained in a news release from the American College of Cardiology (ACC), a heart CT scan gives doctors 3-D images that they can use to assess the degree of narrowing in the ...

Injected Substance Used With CT Scans Seems Safe for Kidneys: Study

Posted 9 Sep 2014 by

TUESDAY, Sept. 9, 2014 – An injected iodine-based substance often used to enhance the images produced by CT scans is safe for most patients, a new study reveals. The so-called contrast material is used in at least half of the 80 million or more CT scans performed in the United States each year, according to study author Dr. Robert McDonald, a radiology resident at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, ...

Study Questions FDA Warning Against CT Scans for Those With Heart Devices

Posted 27 Feb 2014 by

THURSDAY, Feb. 27, 2014 – Despite a U.S. Food and Drug Administration warning six years ago, a new study finds that there appears to be no danger from CT scans for people with implanted pacemakers or defibrillators. In 2008, the FDA cautioned that the radiation used in CT scans could cause these devices to malfunction. Specifically, the agency warned that the scans might cause unintended shocks ...

U.S. Panel Backs Routine Lung CT Scans for Older, Heavy Smokers

Posted 30 Dec 2013 by

MONDAY, Dec. 30, 2013 – A highly influential government panel of experts says that older smokers at high risk of lung cancer should receive annual low-dose CT scans to help detect and possibly prevent the spread of the fatal disease. In its final word on the issue published Dec. 30, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) concluded that the benefits to a very specific segment of smokers ...

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