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Surgery News

Countless Opioid Pills Unused by Dental-Surgery Patients

Posted 2 days 23 hours ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Sept. 27, 2016 – More than half of the narcotic painkillers prescribed after wisdom teeth removal go unused, according to a new study that suggests this could contribute to the U.S. opioid epidemic. "When translated to the broad U.S. population, our findings suggest that more than 100 million opioid pills prescribed to patients following surgical removal of impacted wisdom teeth are not used, leaving the door open for possible abuse or misuse by patients, or their friends or family," said study author Dr. Brandon Maughan. Previous studies have shown that many painkiller abusers take extra pills that were prescribed for friends or relatives, Maughan and his colleagues at the University of Pennsylvania's Perelman School of Medicine and School of Dental Medicine, noted in a school news release. For the study, the researchers examined painkiller use by 79 patients who had their ... Read more

Related support groups: Suboxone, Oxycodone, Surgery, Methadone, Hydrocodone, Percocet, Tramadol, OxyContin, Vicodin, Norco, Fentanyl, Morphine, Codeine, Lortab, Opana, Subutex, Dilaudid, Oral and Dental Conditions, Opana ER, Roxicodone

New Type of Radiation Treatment May Up Survival for Older Lung Cancer Patients

Posted 4 days ago by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Sept. 26, 2016 – Cutting-edge radiation therapy seems to provide a significant survival advantage for older people with early stage lung cancer who aren't strong enough for surgery, a pair of new studies suggests. The therapy is called stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) and it's been available for about a decade. The first study reviewed national cancer data and found that survival rates for older lung cancer patients treated with radiation therapy increased dramatically between 2004 and 2012. Those are the years during which SBRT use became widespread in the United States, said lead researcher Dr. Andrew Farach, a radiation oncologist at Houston Methodist Hospital. A second study based on Veterans Affairs cancer treatment data appears to corroborate the national findings, directly linking increased use of SBRT with improved survival rates in elderly patients. Farach ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Lung Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Small Cell Lung Cancer, History - Radiation Therapy, Bronchogenic Carcinoma

'Medical Tattoos' Help Hide Surgical Scars

Posted 7 days ago by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Sept. 23, 2016 – Patients with unsightly scars from cancer surgeries may benefit from "medical tattoos" that can help restore some of the skin's natural appearance, Dutch researchers report. The researchers surveyed 56 patients who got medical tattoos on their head and neck, and found they were pleased with the results. "The mystery until now was how well patients appreciated the technique," said study co-author Dr. Rick van de Langenberg, an ear, nose and throat surgeon at Maastricht University in the Netherlands. In addition to saying their scars looked better, "patients were less stressed about the appearance of the scar and thought less about it," he said. U.S. experts noted that the procedure is common in the United States. In a general sense, "medical tattooing had been performed in the U.S. for decades," said Dr. Fred Fedok, president-elect of the American Academy of ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Cancer, Skin and Structure Infection, Keloids

More Breast Cancer Patients Should Get Radiation, New Guidelines Say

Posted 9 days ago by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 21, 2016 – New guidelines issued by three leading cancer organizations suggest that more breast cancer patients should get radiation therapy after a mastectomy. Overall, the guidelines say there's enough evidence to show radiation treatment after a mastectomy decreases the risk of breast cancer recurrence, and that even women with smaller tumors and three or fewer lymph nodes involved can benefit from the therapy. "The new guidelines say there is clear evidence that the benefit of [post-mastectomy radiation therapy] extends to women with limited lymph node involvement," said Dr. Stephen Edge. He is vice president for health care outcomes and policy at Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo, N.Y. Edge was co-chair of the panel that developed the new guidelines. One radiation treatment expert welcomed the updated recommendations. "The guideline is timely," said Dr. ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Breast Cancer, Breast Cancer - Adjuvant, Breast Cancer, Prevention, Surgical Prophylaxis, Breast Cancer - Palliative, History - Radiation Therapy

Prostate Cancer Treatments: Different Choices for Different Men

Posted 16 days ago by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 14, 2016 – A large, decade-long study offers new insights into the treatment dilemmas that many men diagnosed with prostate cancer face: What to do next? The research finds that for certain men, death rates from prostate cancer were roughly the same over several years regardless of whether they chose to be monitored – called "watchful waiting" – or underwent radiation or had their prostate removed. But the findings don't prove that "watchful waiting" is always the best choice. Men who were otherwise largely healthy and chose to be monitored were twice as likely as the others to see their cancer spread over the 10-year study period. "The healthier you are and the longer your life expectancy, the more risk you're taking with surveillance," said Dr. Anthony D'Amico, a professor of radiation oncology at Harvard Medical School. He wrote a commentary accompanying the ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Prostate Cancer, History - Radiation Therapy, Genitourinary Surgical and Other Conditions

Surgery at High-Quality Hospitals a Money-Saver for Medicare

Posted 8 Sep 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Sept. 8, 2016 – Having major surgery at a high-quality hospital costs Medicare less than the same procedure at a low-quality hospital, a new study finds. The savings come mostly from the cost of post-surgical care, the researchers said. "In much of health care, better care costs more money but surgery may be one situation in which getting care at a high-quality hospital not only saves lives, but also saves money. And that is a win for everyone," said study senior author Dr. Ashish Jha. Jha is a professor of international health at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in Boston, and director of the Harvard Global Health Institute. The researchers reviewed 2011-2012 Medicare data on five types of major surgery. The surgeries included heart bypass surgery, removal of part of a lung, repair of abdominal aortic aneurysm, surgical removal of all or part of the colon, and ... Read more

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Removing Part of Skull After Severe Head Injury Brings Mixed Results

Posted 8 Sep 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Sept. 8, 2016 – Removing part of the skull to relieve pressure in the brain following a severe head injury can save a person's life, but the patient is often left permanently disabled, a new clinical trial has determined. Doctors frequently turn to craniectomy for patients who are suffering from brain swelling as a result of traumatic head injury, but little is known about whether the procedure spares these patients from long-term brain damage. The new trial found it can drastically reduce risk of death, with about 30 percent of patients dying following the procedure compared to 52 percent of those treated with standard medical care. However, people treated with a craniectomy were three times more likely to wind up in a vegetative state (6 percent vs. 2 percent), and often were as likely to suffer long-term disabilities as patients receiving standard medical care, the study ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Head Injury, Head & Neck Surgery, Neurosurgery, Head Injury with Intracranial Hemorrhage, Head Injury w/ Intracranial Hemorrhage and Loss of Consciousness, Seizure Prophylaxis During or Following Neurosurgery, Head Injury with Loss of Consciousness

Smoking Linked to Higher Relapse Risk After Surgery for Crohn's

Posted 2 Sep 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Sept. 1, 2016 – Smoking increases the risk that Crohn's disease patients will have relapses after bowel surgery, new research suggests. The study included 240 Crohn's disease patients in the United Kingdom who were followed for three years after bowel surgery. Crohn's disease occurs when the immune system attacks the lining of the gut and bowel, and causes severe inflammation, the study authors noted. This can result in diarrhea, abdominal pain, nausea and reduced appetite. Patients are usually initially treated with drugs to suppress their immune system. But the study authors said that more than half of Crohn's patients eventually have surgery to remove the affected section of their bowel. However, surgery does not cure Crohn's, and relapses are common. According to the researchers from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland, smokers were much more likely than nonsmokers to ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Smoking, Crohn's Disease, Smoking Cessation, Crohn's Disease - Maintenance, Crohn's Disease - Acute

Weight-Loss Surgery Sheds Pounds Long Term

Posted 31 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 31, 2016 – Weight-loss surgery helps people drop a significant amount of weight, and now a new study confirms that much of the weight appears to stay off for at least 10 years. "This study suggests that patients interested in bariatric surgery, especially gastric bypass surgery, should be able to lose a significant amount of weight and keep that weight off for a very long time," said study researcher Matt Maciejewski. He's a professor of medicine at Duke University School of Medicine, in Durham, N.C. While other research has found that weight-loss surgery is the most effective treatment for obese patients, there is less data on long-lasting effects. The new study is notable because of the decade-long follow-up, said Maciejewski, who is also a research career scientist at Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center. In the two-part study, Maciejewski's team first looked at ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Obesity, Weight Loss, Gastric Bypass Surgery

iPads Calm Surgery-Bound Kids as Well as Sedatives

Posted 30 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Aug. 30, 2016 – Savvy parents probably already suspect it: iPads work as well as sedative drugs to calm anxious kids before surgery, a new study shows. Researchers assessed 112 children between 4 and 10 years old in France who had day surgery requiring general anesthesia. Twenty minutes before receiving the anesthesia, 54 kids were given the sedative midazolam and 58 were handed an iPad to distract them. Anxiety levels in both groups of kids and their parents were similar, but iPads conferred none of the side effects of sedatives, the researchers said. Also, they said the kids given iPads were easier to anesthetize. "Our study showed that child and parental anxiety before anesthesia are equally blunted by midazolam or use of the iPad," said Dr. Dominique Chassard and colleagues at Hopital Femme-Mere-Enfant in Bron, France. "However, the quality of induction of anesthesia, as ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Xanax, Surgery, Anxiety and Stress, Klonopin, Clonazepam, Ativan, Valium, Lorazepam, Alprazolam, Diazepam, Temazepam, Agitation, Librium, Restoril, Xanax XR, Oxazepam, Halcion, Serax, Triazolam

Study Bolsters Role of Angioplasty, Stents in Heart-Attack Survival

Posted 30 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Aug. 30, 2016 – Patients who suffer a heart attack live longer now than they did before, and invasive procedures such as angioplasty, stents and bypass get a lot of the credit, a new study suggests. While medicines and healthy lifestyle remain important, "it was the increased and more widespread use of this invasive coronary strategy that explain the changes/improvements in survival after heart attack" between 2003 and 2013, said study author Dr. Chris P. Gale. He is associate professor and consultant cardiologist at the University of Leeds in England. Gale's team noted there's been a steady decline in the rate at which people die in the months after a heart attack. But what's driving that good news? To find out, Gale worked with Leeds co-author Dr. Marlous Hall and others to track information from a 2003-2013 database on nearly 400,000 heart attack patients living in England ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Heart Attack, Myocardial Infarction, Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction, Myocardial Infarction - Prophylaxis, Post MI Syndrome, Cardiothoracic Surgery

Could Weight-Loss Surgery Boost Odds of Preemie Birth?

Posted 25 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 24, 2016 – Mothers-to-be who've had weight-loss surgery may have increased odds for premature delivery, researchers report. "Women and their doctors should be aware of this risk increase, and women with previous bariatric [weight-loss] surgery should be carefully monitored during pregnancy," said Dr. Olof Stephansson, lead researcher on a new study from Sweden. The current findings contradict results from a smaller study by the same team. However, the earlier research involved fewer than 600 women who had undergone weight-loss surgery. This time, the researchers assessed nearly 2,000 births after the surgery. The investigators found that 8.4 percent were preterm – before 37 weeks' gestation. That compared with 6.8 percent among nearly 6,600 women of similar size who didn't have the weight-loss procedure. "We cannot say what is causing this risk increase, but we have ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Obesity, Weight Loss, Gastric Bypass Surgery, Prematurity/Underweight in Infancy

Use of Cancer-Linked Fibroid Device Declines After FDA Warning

Posted 23 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Aug. 23, 2016 – The use of power morcellators – cutting tools used in minimally invasive gynecological procedures – has dropped significantly for hysterectomies since the U.S. Food and Drug Administration warned against their use two years ago, a new study finds. Power morcellators have small blades that rotate rapidly. When used in minimally invasive hysterectomies or for the removal of noncancerous growths on the uterus known as fibroids, they slice the tissue into smaller pieces that are removed through a small opening in the abdomen. But tiny pieces of tissue can also spread to other areas of the body. And, sometimes, undetected cancers can be cut up with the healthy tissue. If that cancerous tissue isn't completely removed, those cells can cause cancer elsewhere. That's what prompted the FDA to issue its 2014 warning, the researchers explained. The new study looked only ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Cancer, Hysterectomy, Ovarian Cancer, Uterine Leiomyomata / Fibroids, Urinary Tract Cancer, Genitourinary Surgical and Other Conditions

Knee Surgery Rarer, but Problems More Likely, for Minority Patients

Posted 18 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Aug. 18, 2016 – Minority patients in the United States are less likely to get knee replacement surgery, but more likely to have complications when they do, a new study finds. Knee replacement can be used to treat patients who have severe pain, stiffness and reduced knee function, often due to arthritis or injury. More than 600,000 knee replacements are done in the United States each year. "Even after adjusting for certain patient demographics, socioeconomic status, and health care system characteristics, significant racial disparities in [total knee replacement] utilization and outcomes exist," corresponding study author Yan Ma said. Ma is an associate professor of epidemiology and biostatistics at the Milken Institute School of Public Health at George Washington University in Washington, D.C. Ma and his colleagues analyzed federal data on more than 547,000 total knee ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Knee Joint Replacement, Orthopedic Surgery

Injuries at Indoor Trampoline Parks Jump

Posted 16 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Aug. 16, 2016 – A wave of injuries at indoor trampoline parks has prompted a call for design and safety standards. In a small study, Australian researchers described injuries occurring at the parks as "an emerging public health concern." They reported that over six months, one Australian trauma center treated dozens of kids who were hurt at indoor trampoline parks. Between July 2014 and January 2015, its emergency room treated 40 children for trampoline park injuries. Their average age was 10, and the youngest child was 1. Thirty-three injuries occurred on the trampoline and 18 resulted from a bad landing. Eight injuries happened when several kids of different sizes used a trampoline at the same time. About half of the children were hurt while jumping, and five were injured while trying somersaults or flips. Six kids were hurt when they landed awkwardly on part of the ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Fracture, bone, Compression Fracture of Vertebral Column, Prevention of Fractures

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