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Preserving Patients’ Sanity in the Hospital

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Faculty from Rutgers New Jersey Medical School are working to attack the problem of hospital-acquired delirium in the surgical intensive care unit. They are getting valuable assistance from Doctor of Physical Therapy students from Rutgers School of Health Related Professions, who provide physical therapy to patients. Researchers estimate that at least 45 percent of patients in intensive care develop hospital-acquired delirium, a number that can rise above 80 percent when patients have mechanical breathing assistance. Advancing age also puts patients at higher risk. Patients with delirium tend to die more frequently than others during the 12 months after they leave the hospital, and the effects of delirium often linger.

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Overuse of Blood Transfusions Increases Infection Risk

The fewer the red blood cell transfusions, the less likely patients were to develop infections like pneumonia.

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Anesthetic Technique Important to Prevent Damage to Brain

Researchers at the University of Adelaide have discovered that a commonly used anesthetic technique to reduce the blood pressure of patients undergoing surgery could increase the risk of starving the brain of oxygen.

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Researchers Develop Technique to Measure Quantity, Risks of Engineered Nanomaterials Delivered to Cells

Scientists at the Center for Nanotechnology and Nanotoxicology at Harvard School of Public Health have discovered a way to measure the effective density of engineered nanoparticles in physiological fluids, making it possible to determine the amount of nanomaterials that come into contact with cells and tissue in culture.

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Virginia Mason Inspires New Patient Safety Measures for England’s National Health Service

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Virginia Mason’s commitment to safety and quality is helping to inspire new measures aimed at improving patient safety at hospitals throughout England.

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Patient Safety Merits New Clinical Data Review For Modified Medical Devices, UCSF Physician Says

For patient safety, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) should require that clinical data be submitted as part of a more rigorous re-evaluation of medical devices that are modified after approval. According to authors Rita Redberg, MD, UCSF professor of medicine, and UCSF second-year medical student Sarah Zheng, such a requirement could prevent deaths due to insufficiently tested device modifications.

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Microfluidic Device With Artificial Arteries Measures Drugs’ Influence on Blood Clotting

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A new microfluidic method for evaluating drugs commonly used for preventing heart attacks has found that while aspirin can prevent dangerous blood clots in some at-risk patients, it may not be effective in all patients with narrowed arteries. The study, which involved 14 human subjects, used a device that simulated blood flowing through narrowed coronary arteries to assess effects of anti-clotting drugs.

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New IHC Validation Guideline Improves Patient Safety by Ensuring Consistent Lab Test Results

The College of American Pathologists has developed the first evidence-based guideline to validate all immunohistochemical (IHC) assays. The guideline, “Principles of Analytic Validation of Immunohistochemical Assays, is available in the online edition of Archives of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine.

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UC Davis Faculty Drive Efforts to Improve CT Safety

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UC Davis clinicians and physicists have recommended new strategies to make computed tomography (CT) safer, including adoption of a new metric for dose measurement, ways to manage exposure protocols that differ by CT brand and specific approaches to reduce exposure during needle biopsies. The recommendations are detailed in papers published in the March issue of the Journal of the American College of Radiology (JACR).

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Researchers Find Significant Increase in Painkillers Prescribed to U.S. Adults Visiting Emergency Departments

George Washington University Researchers were published today in Academic Emergency Medicine for their paper, "Rising Opioid Prescribing in Adult U.S. Emergency Department Visits: 2001-2010."

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