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A ban on chain restaurant sale of foods containing trans fats went into effect in New York City in 2008. In 2007 and 2009, receipts were obtained from adult customers exiting chain restaurants in New York City and matched to published nutritional information. Between these 2 periods, there was a substantial decrease in the amount of trans fat consumed per meal, without increased consumption of saturated fat. Results did not differ according to the poverty rate of the neighborhood in which the restaurant was located. The study shows that regulation can result in positive dietary changes.
This cross-sectional study suggests that urinary incontinence may be a common problem in young nulligravid women. The highest rates of urinary incontinence were found among women who reported ever being sexually active and were not using combined oral contraceptives, and incontinence was associated with poorer indexes of health-related quality of life. Urinary incontinence does not appear to affect only women who have been pregnant.
Depression is a common adverse effect of interferon-α (IFN-α) treatment of chronic hepatitis C virus infection. This randomized trial in patients without risk factors for psychiatric disease found that, compared with placebo, continuous treatment with escitalopram starting 2 weeks before and during IFN-α therapy decreased the number of patients who developed depression. Escitalopram may be useful for preventing depression when IFN-α treatment is required for chronic hepatitis C virus infection.
The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) commissioned this review to inform the upcoming update of its recommendation on postmenopausal hormone therapy for the primary prevention of chronic conditions. Among 9 trials that met inclusion criteria, estrogen plus progestin and estrogen alone decreased risk for fractures but increased risk for stroke, thromboembolic events, gallbladder disease, and urinary incontinence. Estrogen plus progestin increased risk for breast cancer and probable dementia, whereas estrogen alone decreased risk for breast cancer.
This Update summarizes studies published in 2011 that the authors consider highly relevant to the practice of rheumatology. Topics include systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis, gout, systemic sclerosis, and rheumatic diseases.
This USPSTF recommendation on screening for prostate cancer considers evidence on the benefits and harms of prostate-specific antigen (PSA)–based screening for prostate cancer, as well as those of treatment of localized prostate cancer, that has become available since its 2008 recommendation. The Task Force recommends against PSA-based screening for prostate cancer. This is a grade D recommendation.
An antiobesity medication called “Qnexa” (a combination of phentermine and topiramate) lead to 10% weight loss in obese adults in clinical trials, but the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommended against approval in 2010 because of safety concerns. On 22 February 2012, the FDA convened another panel for advice on Qnexa. This commentary, written by 1 of the 2 panelists who voted against approval, asks the question: Is Qnexa another lemon, or is it the peach we all want?
The U.S. government's investment in training researchers and funding research projects has produced many medical advances. However, many patients still suffer preventable errors and harms and fail to receive recommended therapies. This commentary discusses the minimal investment in the science of patient safety and quality improvement and argues that more patient safety researchers are needed to rigorously design, implement, evaluate, and spread interventions to reduce preventable harm.
This commentary discusses the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommendation against PSA-based screening for men of any age. The commentator agrees with the recommendation and discusses how there is little appreciation of the harms that screening and medical interventions can cause.
This commentary discusses the USPSTF recommendation against PSA-based screening for men of any age. The commentators believe that the Task Force has underestimated the benefits and overestimated the harms of prostate cancer screening and disagree with its recommendation.
In this issue, Angell and colleagues report on the effect of the New York City regulation that has restricted the use of trans fat in the preparation of foods that are sold by chain restaurants. The editorialist discusses the data reported and how the study provides a unique opportunity to examine a new public health approach to altering secular dietary trends and, potentially, health outcomes.
For the first year, I felt that I hadn't so much enrolled in medical school as foreign language immersion. As an unabashed logophile, I cherished the lecturers who delved, however briefly, into the comforting territory of etymology. Although the year was grueling, I found comfort in pronouncing and defining the new terms.