(NewsUSA) – Experts say communication is key when dealing with prescription medicine.
Research has shown that a gap in communication between health care providers (HCPs) and patients about the potential risks of prescription medicines can result in adverse drug events. Increasing communication about prescriptions can help ensure that patients avoid such events, improve adherence to their medicine regimen(s) and live healthier lives.
The National Council on Patient Information and Education (NCPIE) launched a campaign earlier this year called “Talk Before You Take,” aiming to spark this necessary patient/HCP engagement and encourage more conversations between patients and HCPs.
“It’s imperative that health care providers and patients keep the lines of communication flowing,” says Ray Bullman, NCPIE executive vice president.
Bullman and his colleagues’ research for the campaign was developed by Johns Hopkins University and Ipsos Healthcare, with support from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
According to the National Center for Health Statistics, nearly half of Americans take prescription medicines, and over 20 percent of Americans take at least three. However, the research found that approximately 62 percent of patients were not aware of any safety warnings about their medicines. Ten percent of patients unaware of the possibility of a severe side effect actually experience a serious reaction.
“It is important for patients to understand how to take their medicines safely so they experience all the benefits and minimize the potential risks,” said Janet Woodcock, M.D., director of the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. “Talk Before You Take encourages more discussion about medications between patients and their health care providers and pharmacists, which can improve the health of patients and our health care system.”
In addition, the campaign offers four tips for patients and caregivers to guide conversations with HCPs:
* Talk to your health care provider and ask questions about the benefits and potential risks of prescription medicines you take.
* Tell your health care provider about all of the medicines you are taking — including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins and dietary supplements.
* Tell your health care provider about any allergies or sensitivities that you may have.
* Read and follow the medicine label and directions.
For more information, visit www.talkbeforeyoutake.org. This work is supported by FDA grant number 5U18FD004653-03.
(NewsUSA) – Experts say communication is key when dealing with prescription medicine.
(NewsUSA) – Imagine going into cataract surgery with poor vision and coming out with outstanding vision. Well, thanks to breakthrough intraocular lenses (IOLs), this may not be so far-fetched. [An IOL is an artificial lens placed in a person’s eye to restore vision after cataract surgery.]
Today, medicine is moving beyond a one-size-fits-all model and is entering an age of more personalized treatment. An example of this growing trend is that doctors can now offer customized lens treatment options to improve people’s vision after cataract surgery. Even those who have worn glasses their entire lives — or are just starting to use readers — have the potential to be free of glasses post cataract surgery.
Developed by Abbott and recently approved by the Food and Drug Administration, the Tecnis Multifocal 1-Piece IOLs (+2.75D and +3.25D) provide individualized options to the more than 20 million people estimated to undergo cataract surgery. These lenses allow people to have a full range of outstanding near, intermediate and far vision that can be customized based on a person’s own vision needs and lifestyle.
“Many of my cataract patients are of working age and have very active lifestyles,” said Tal Raviv, MD, FACS, Medical Director of the Eye Center of New York in Manhattan. “The ability to see all distances — from looking at a smartphone to watching a movie on the big screen — without the need for corrective wear is not only a benefit but a necessity.” Overall, people may not need to wear their glasses for daily tasks.
Cataracts cloud the natural crystalline lens in the eye, and typically progress slowly causing vision loss, and can be potentially blinding if left untreated. Cataract surgery is one of the most common and safest procedures in the U.S. with more than 3 million surgeries expected to be done each year from 2014 to 2016 — and that number is expected to grow as the population ages. In fact, as new technologies become available that can significantly improve vision, today’s boomers are even opting to have the procedure done earlier in life (40’s, 50’s and 60’s) so they can maintain their healthy, active lifestyles.
“I am constantly on my phone or computer and my vision was definitely becoming blurry,” said Vivian Gemelos, Dr. Raviv’s patient. “When I was told I had the option to have my vision corrected at all distances without glasses when my cataract was removed and replaced with this new lens, I jumped at the opportunity. I had one eye done and immediately saw the difference. Even colors are brighter. Now, I can’t wait to have my other eye done.”
For more information, visit www.abbott.com.
The military has long worried that an over-reliance on prescription painkillers for the after-effects of tours of duty was putting both veterans and active-duty troops at risk of dependency, serious adverse reactions to the drugs and accidental death. The problem was found to be greatest among veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan—particularly those with post-traumatic stress disorder—who, according to a recent study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), may have been given “inappropriate prescriptions” for opioids in a misguided attempt to relieve their suffering quickly.
Now, however, change appears to be coming as the military expands its use of alternative treatments such as chiropractic care.
(NewsUSA) – For years, the military has worried that an over-reliance on prescription painkillers was putting both veterans and active-duty troops at risk of addiction, serious adverse reactions to the drugs, and accidental death. The problem was found to be greatest among veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan — particularly those with post-traumatic stress disorder — who, according to a recent study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, may have been given “inappropriate prescriptions” for opioids in a misguided attempt to quickly relieve their suffering.
Finally, change appears to be coming as the military expands its use of alternative treatments like chiropractic care.
In fact, Dr. Robert D. Kerns, the national program director for pain management at the Department of Veterans Affairs, told the New York Times that the study “encourages” his department as well as the Pentagon’s health system, “to build on our existing initiatives.”
That would be welcome news to Congressional committees following up on last year’s Veterans Health Administration scandal.
“We have said for a long time that sending a veteran out of the door with a bagful of pills is not a solution,” Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Fla., said in investigating allegations that a Tomah, Wisconsin, Veterans Affairs hospital was prescribing “excessive dosages of opiates.”
As more research pours in, chiropractic care continues to gain supporters. A 2013 study published in the journal “Spine,” for example, found that 73 percent of participating active-duty military patients with acute low back pain receiving a combination of chiropractic manipulative treatment and standard medical care rated their global improvement as “pain completely gone,” “much better” or “moderately better.”
Just 17 percent in the same study who received only standard care said likewise.
To learn more about chiropractic care or to find a chiropractor in your area, visit www.F4CP.org/findadoctor.
Recently, a growing number of experts have argued that the downside of drugs and invasive spinal surgery as methods to combatting chronic back pain were potentially so great in certain cases that a proven alternative such as chiropractic care should officially be recognized as a significant option. Now the influential Joint Commission is weighing in.
(NewsUSA) – Eating healthy and getting fit seem to be the mantra these days. After all, the First Lady has made childhood obesity a priority with her “Let’s Move” campaign. Plus, the diet industry isn’t showing any signs of slowing down, with Americans spending more than $60 billion annually, according to U.S. News and World Report.
Despite that, obesity continues to plague the U.S. and remains a serious health concern for the country. Underscoring this point is that, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than one-third or 78.6 million U.S. adults are obese, and in 2008, the last year that numbers were reported, obesity cost the U.S. $147 billion in annual medical expenses.
For those looking to lose a little or a lot of weight, choosing between lifestyle products that assist with weight management can seem daunting.
“With so many products that assist in weight management to choose from, it’s difficult to know which ones will work,” said Simon St. Ledger, managing director of Rapid Nutrition, producer of U.S.-made natural health care supplements that have seen huge success in Australia. “This is why we are so focused on being our customers’ first choice for their health and well-being needs, and establishing that there are companies that make choice products.”
Rapid Nutrition was established on the back of its proven science-based supplements, SystemLS, that are now being sold in Australia’s biggest retailer (Woolworth’s) but will soon be available worldwide — including the U.S.
The best part? All ingredients, according to the company website, are 100 percent natural, organic, gluten-free and designed to support natural weight management. The scientifically formulated SystemLS includes six products that have undergone stringent testing. The formula is high in fiber, antioxidants, omega 3’s, whole-food-based vitamins, probiotics and high-quality whey protein. In addition, SystemLS offers a unique weight-loss-coach phone app to provide ongoing motivation, training and support.
“We are well positioned to help more people tackle the challenge of weight management with a system that works,” said St. Ledger.
To learn more about SystemLS products and the phone app, visit www.systemls.com.
(NewsUSA) – The move for a “chiropractic first” approach to treating pain just got a big boost.
In recent years, a growing number of experts have argued that the downsides of relying on drugs and invasive spinal surgery were potentially so great in certain cases — particularly among patients with chronic back pain — that a proven alternative like chiropractic care should officially be recognized as a serious option. Now comes word that the influential Joint Commission has done just that.
Following what it called “an extensive literature review,” the not-for-profit organization, which accredits and certifies more than 20,500 health organizations and programs in the U.S., announced that it was revising its “Provision of Care, Treatment, and Services” standard to “affirm” the role of nonpharmacologic approaches including chiropractic care in pain management.
“In addition,” the commission warned regarding the use of medications, “organizations should consider both the benefits to the patient as well as the risks of dependency, addiction and the abuse of opioids.”
Nearly 80 percent of Americans are believed to experience back pain at some point in their lives. Past studies have shown that patients who turned to a chiropractor first had consistently better health outcomes and drastically reduced their odds of having to undergo costly surgery.
“As a nation, we are facing an epidemic of prescription drug abuse, and all stakeholders in health care stand to benefit from a conservative approach focusing on chiropractic first, drugs second and surgery last,” said Gerard Clum, D.C., of the not-for-profit Foundation for Chiropractic Progress.
To learn more about chiropractic care or to find a chiropractor near your area, visit www.F4CP.org/findadoctor.
(NewsUSA) – Each year 14 million people worldwide find out they have cancer, and 8 million die from the disease. It is now the leading cause of death around the world, and there is no cure. However, one company is working on what it believes to be an effective method to help control the spread of the disease, and treat and stabilize the cancer.
Propanc Health Group is a Melbourne, Australia-based health care company currently focusing on developing new cancer treatments for patients with solid tumors such as pancreatic and colorectal cancer. With its lead product, PRP, currently in animal trials — and soon moving to clinical trials, the company believes it has a way to extend the life expectancy of cancer patients. In a previously conducted compassionate care study, PRP did increase life expectancy in terminal patients.
The way it works is this: Propanc has identified that pancreatic proenzymens are able to suppress, or stop, a long-silent embryonic program reactivated by cancer cells, by returning cancer cells back toward normal behavior. This is important because certain cancer cells develop traits such as motility, invasiveness and a resistance to death. They also become “stem-cell” like and develop the ability to seed new tumors. This process, called metastasis, is responsible for about 90 percent of deaths from cancer.
“From our research we observed that pancreatic proenzymes enforce the re-entry of cancer cells into normal cellular pathways and could represent an exciting new method of managing the disease process,” said Dr. Julian Kenyon, Chief Scientific Officer of Propanc Health Group. “We believe this small but significant step supports my initial observations from clinical practice that pancreatic proenzymes have the potential to prolong life and stop tumors from spreading, especially if we treat patients during earlier stages of the disease process.”
The company’s vision is to identify active anti-cancer agents, which have anti-cancer effects and are a less-toxic and effective way to treat patients, compared to standard treatment approaches.
“Propanc is a very well tolerated medication and has been shown to extend survival time well beyond that expected in any of the patients it has been used on,” said Dr. Kenyon. “These results are by far and away better than I have ever seen with chemotherapy, radiotherapy or monoclonal antibodies, which are the treatments offered currently.”
More information can be found at www.propanc.com. Media and investors should reach out to Regal Consulting at 702-575-9157.
(NewsUSA) – Most people have never heard of sarcoidosis, but this complex condition has actually been acknowledged for more than 150 years. Well-known people who have been impacted by the condition include Bernie Mac, Reggie White, Evander Holyfield, Tisha Campbell-Martin and Daisy Fuentes. Although anyone can develop sarcoidosis, it is most common among people between the ages of 20-40.
Often, the symptoms of sarcoidosis are similar to cancer or arthritis, and people may undergo unnecessary treatment before finding out their actual diagnosis. It’s stories like this that inspired the CHEST Foundation of the American College of Chest Physicians and the Foundation for Sarcoidosis Research (FSR) to team up and launch “Sarcoidosis: Seek Answers. Inspire Results,” a campaign that encourages people living with sarcoidosis to take a proactive role in their treatment.
“While sarcoidosis is not fully understood, it’s important to consider it if symptoms are present,” said Doreen J. Addrizzo-Harris, MD, FCCP, co-director of the Pulmonary/Critical Care Faculty Group Practice at NYU Langone Medical Center, pulmonary section chief at Tisch Hospital in New York City, and trustee of the CHEST Foundation board. “The educational resources available at www.chestnet.org/sarcoid encourage people living with sarcoidosis to openly discuss options with their doctor, then follow their unique treatment plan.”
Sarcoidosis is an inflammatory disease wherein the immune system goes into overdrive, causing cells to group together into clumps called granulomas. When too many granulomas form on an organ, they can interfere with its function. Though sarcoidosis can impact any organ, the lungs and lymph nodes are affected in more than 90 percent of cases.
With good medical care, most cases are not severe and do not cause lasting damage to the body. However, 30-40 percent of people with sarcoidosis have a persistent condition that may require treatment to control symptoms.
Common symptoms include:
1. Fever, fatigue, weight loss, night sweats and an overall feeling of ill health.
2. A persistent cough, shortness of breath and chest pain.
3. Enlarged lymph nodes — most often located in the neck, but they can also be under the chin, in the armpits or the groin area.
Other signs may include skin changes (such as painful or red, raised bumps), joint pain or eye sensitivity.
For more information and to download sarcoidosis resources — including the “Sarcoid Five,” a list of five questions designed to jump-start conversations between patients and doctors — please visit www.chestnet.org/sarcoid.
(NewsUSA) – A medida que los nacidos durante la explosión de natalidad de la posguerra se jubilan de sus trabajos en índices sin precedentes en los EE. UU., uno tiende a pensar que ellos estarían disfrutando de su tiempo libre con amigos, leyendo el periódico mientras toman café por las mañanas o tomándose vacaciones en enero en algún lugar cálido. Pero muchas de estas personas se encuentran actualmente ante un dilema que pocos prevén para esa etapa de la vida: volver a criar niños. Los censos indican que 2,7 millones de abuelos son responsables del cuidado de sus nietos. Estas nuevas responsabilidades pueden ser gratificantes, pero también causan mucho estrés.
De hecho, hay muchas cosas que pueden generarles estrés a los jubilados; pagar las cuentas con un ingreso fijo, los problemas de salud, el ocuparse de parientes o esposos enfermos, e incluso el ser abuelos. El estrés en exceso puede provocar problemas serios de salud.
“Al estar estresado, el cuerpo libera sustancias como cortisol y adrenalina que afectan a todos los órganos y que provocan tensión en los músculos, secreción de insulina y un aumento del ritmo cardíaco”, señaló Arthur Hayward, médico geriatra y Jefe del cuerpo de médicos del Instituto para el Cuidado de Ancianos de Kaiser Permanente.
“No es posible evitar el estrés, pero manejarlo puede ayudarlo a preservar su salud y bienestar”, añadió el Dr. Hayward. Recomienda identificar y comprender la causa del estrés y buscar formas de liberarlo, como alguna de los siguientes consejos:
1. Modere su propio ritmo. No trate de abarcar demasiado. Sea consciente de sus limitaciones.
2. Fíjese objetivos y expectativas realistas, y no tenga miedo de pedir ayuda.
3. Planifique tiempo para usted mismo. Recargue sus baterías.
4. Haga ejercicio y siga una dieta balanceada. Coma muchas frutas, verduras y alimentos integrales.
5. Intente practicar técnicas de relajación como meditación o yoga.
6. Duerma lo suficiente. Si tiene problemas para dormir, consúltelo con su médico. El tomar bebidas con cafeína y alcohol puede afectar su capacidad para dormir bien por la noche.
7. Hable con alguno de sus afectos o escriba en un diario personal.
8. Sea positivo. Los pensamientos positivos pueden hacer la diferencia, como “Tengo esperanza” o “Las cosas van a mejorar”.
Para más información, consulte kp.org/healthyaging. Para preguntas o consejos sobre una enfermedad específica, consulte a su médico.