Policy, Ethics, Education Archives - Page 4 of 10 - PulmCCM

Policy, Ethics, Education Articles

May 122013
Killer carbapenem-resistant bacteria spreading through LTACs

Killer Carbapenem-Resistant Bacteria Spreading Across U.S. Gut-living bacteria like Klebsiella are gaining resistance to carbapenems at an alarming rate, and long-term acute care hospitals (LTACs) and nursing homes seem to be the incubators for these killer bugs spreading across the U.S. Carbapenems  like meropenem and doripenem have been the gold standard to treat infections from [… read more]

May 122013
Allowing families to witness CPR had positive effects (RCT)

Families Allowed to Witness CPR Felt Better, Had Fewer Regrets Should family members be allowed, or even encouraged, to witness the health care team’s attempts to revive their family member with CPR after a cardiac arrest? In the interests of openness and transparency, many have argued “yes,” with the thought that witnessing the heroic efforts [… read more]

Mar 302013
Having a pulmonary embolism? Don't wait for the weekend

Why Patients with PEs Shouldn’t Love the Weekend Hospitals big and small struggle with weekend staffing models.  Mortality has been shown to be higher on the weekend for several common life-threatening illnesses, including CHF exacerbations, acute MI, upper GI bleeds and intracerebral hemorrhage. All these conditions are known to benefit from early intervention; however, whether [… read more]

Mar 262013

The following is a guest post from Dr. Jonathan Weiss; the views expressed are his own. Submit your own guest post to PulmCCM, and be heard by thousands of your colleagues.  Maintenance of Certification: Good or Bad? Dear Colleagues, A short history lesson: For years, physicians, upon completing a residency or fellowship, went through a [… read more]

Mar 212013
Big Tobacco win: Feds to take breather in fight for scary cigarette labeling

Feds to Big Tobacco on Cigarette Labeling Fight: “Uncle!” The feds are admitting defeat for now in their fight for graphic, negative imagery to be displayed on all cigarette packaging and advertisements. Attorney General Eric Holder announced yesterday that the Justice Department will not ask the Supreme Court to reverse their loss in a federal [… read more]

Mar 172013
FDA warns of sudden cardiac death with use of azithromycin

FDA Warns of Sudden Cardiac Death Risk from Azithromycin Last summer, PulmCCM reported on a New England Journal paper suggesting an increased risk of sudden cardiac death in patients taking even a short 5-day course of azithromycin. Yesterday, the FDA expressed its official concern in a Drug Safety Communication and statement to the press on [… read more]

Feb 272013
Knowing When, When Knowing Is Impossible (Paul McLean)

Knowing When, When Knowing Is Impossible By Paul C. McLean The child was her first, and there were complications and aggressive therapies from the start and for months. She was unaware that the medical team was coming to believe the baby would not survive, that aggressive treatments no longer served a therapeutic purpose and were [… read more]

Feb 212013
Intubation in pre-hospital cardiac arrest strongly associated with worse outcomes

Intubation for Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest May Harm, Not Help by Blair Westerly, MD Out of hospital cardiac arrest is a major public-health problem, and despite advances in care, survival is still low. Improved survival has been associated with early CPR, rapid defibrillation, and integrated post cardiac arrest care, but pre-hospital “advanced airway management” (i.e., intubation [… read more]

Feb 192013
Time to retire routine replacement of peripheral IVs

Time to Retire Routine Replacement of Peripheral IVs Study question:  Do peripheral I.V.s need to be changed every 72-96 hours per the CDCs recommendations or can they be changed as clinically indicated? How many times as a resident did you receive a call at 4 a.m., often at the very moment you were about to [… read more]

Dec 312012
Adherence with low tidal volumes for ARDS is poor at top centers; reduces survival

(image: Wikipedia) Anyone with the keys to a ventilator knows, or should, that low tidal volume ventilation (~6 mL/kg ideal body weight) for patients with ARDS can be lifesaving: as many as one in 11 people with ARDS treated by low tidal volume ventilation may have their lives saved or extended while in the hospital. [… read more]

Dec 292012
Xigris' epitaph: "I Never Worked a Day in My Life" (PROWESS-SHOCK)

Recombinant human activated protein C or dotrecogin alfa — better known as Xigris, by Eli Lilly — seemed a godsend when it was first approved for treatment of severe sepsis in 2001. Xigris’ FDA approval (despite an evenly split 10-10 vote) was based solely on the Eli Lilly-funded PROWESS study, a phase 3 randomized trial [… read more]

Dec 292012
Xarelto (rivaroxaban) gets FDA indication for DVT and PE; no heparin bridging needed

Xarelto (rivaroxaban): New FDA Indication for DVT, PE The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Bayer’s Xarelto (rivaroxaban) for a new indication for treating deep vein thrombosis (DVT) or pulmonary embolism (PE), and for long-term prophylaxis of recurrent DVT and PE. Xarelto already had FDA approval for prevention of DVTs and PEs after knee or [… read more]

Dec 282012
ACCP, ATS only weakly recommend lung cancer CT screening, warn of harms

The American College of Chest Physicians (ACCP) has issued its long-awaited recommendations on lung cancer screening with chest CT — and far from a ringing endorsement of screening, they are conservative and subdued, emphasizing the potential risks of an uncontrolled approach to lung cancer screening in the general population. The American Society of Clinical Oncology [… read more]

Dec 282012
American Lung Association recommends CT screening for lung cancer

The American Lung Association has become the largest advisory body to recommend lung cancer screening for high-risk people, advising nearly all people aged 55-74 with a 30+ pack-year smoking history (the entry criteria for the National Lung Screening Trial, or NLST) to undergo low-dose CT scanning to detect early lung cancer. The National Comprehensive Cancer Network, [… read more]

Dec 252012
Go back to bed; overnight intensivists don't reduce mortality

We intensivists are a scarce and valuable commodity — just ask us, we’ll tell you. It’s been consistently shown, for example, that involved intensivists in an ICU during the day correlates with improved mortality and efficiencies in care. Now that’s something we can all cheer (ourselves) about. Many intensivists also like to sleep, and may [… read more]

Dec 232012
Blood banks recommend restrictive transfusions in ward patients

The American Association of Blood Blanks (AABB) announced upcoming new guidelines in the March online Annals of Internal Medicine, recommending against transfusion for adults and children with stable illness and hemoglobin levels above 7-8 g/dL. They made it a 1A recommendation (strong recommendation with high quality evidence). Jeffrey Carson et al reviewed literature from 1950 to 2011 and [… read more]

Dec 212012
Moderate pot smokers' lung function better than nonsmokers

Smoking marijuana moderately over years is strongly associated with small improvements in lung function, even compared to people who have never smoked cigarettes or marijuana, according to a study in JAMA. But the popular news media and the study authors downplayed that finding of the study, apparently to avoid sending a pro-marijuana message. Mark Pletcher, [… read more]

Dec 162012
Long-acting beta agonist safety for asthma (Review)

Just How “Dangerous” Are Long-Acting Beta-Agonists, Really? Gustavo Rodriguez and Jose Castro-Rodriguez reviewed 20 systematic reviews and databases reporting on the incidence of adverse events with long-acting beta-agonist (LABA) therapy for asthma, for the April 2012 Thorax. They conclude the following: LABAs as monotherapy significantly increase the risk for adverse effects and bad outcomes from [… read more]

Dec 112012
Predicting survival from COPD exacerbations: DECAF score shows promise

DECAF Score Predicts COPD Exacerbation Mortality, But Needs Validation By Brett Ley, MD Despite improvements in care, death during hospitalization for acute exacerbation of COPD (AECOPD) is not uncommon. In the UK in 2008, almost 1 in 12 people admitted with a COPD exacerbation died in-hospital. In the U.S. in 1996, about 1 in 40 [… read more]