Tropical Disease Could Be Misdiagnosed As Rheumatoid Arthritis

Posted On : February 23, 2015,   Time : 8:14 am

Researchers at the Washington University School of Medicine have warned that an infection of the South American tropical disease Chikungunya could be misdiagnosed as rheumatoid arthritis. Both Chikungunya and rheumatoid arthritis share some similar symptoms, but they manifest in different ways. “On physical exams, both conditions can have swelling of and around the joints. However, the Chikungunya virus tends to affect more large joints, such as the knee, as opposed to (rheumatoid arthritis), which more commonly affects the joints of the hands and feet initially,” said Adam Dore, M.D., a rheu

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Patients May Be Too Reluctant To Get Second Opinions

Posted On : February 15, 2015,   Time : 10:31 pm

Do enough patients obtain second opinions when they’re necessary? Writer Jerry Gianciolo doesn’t think so. In a recent opinion article in the Boston Globe, he discussed accompanying a friend to visit a cardiologist who had complaints of pain in his chest. The cardiologist immediately recommended an angioplasty without seeing the results of an angiogram. When Gianciolo suggested the friend seek a second opinion, the friend declined to do so. “Regardless of education level, Americans instinctively trust the accuracy of their doctor’s advice even when, as in this case, the internist is a stranger,” he wrote. Gianciolo cited a study by the non-profit Patient Advocate Foundation concluding that when patients sought a second opinion, it was different from the initial diagnosis 30 percent of the ti

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Patients Struggle To Make Informed Decisions About Their Care

Posted On : January 21, 2015,   Time : 12:42 pm

When it comes to many common medical procedures and interventions, patients are often ill-equipped to gauge their value. That’s the result of a new study in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine. It examined more than 15,000 articles and studies involving more than 27,000 patients. Its conclusion: Patients are unable to evaluate the therapeutic benefit of the procedure they may undergo and appropriately weigh it against the physical risk of undergoing it in the first place.   “Clinicians should discuss accurate and balanced information about intervention benefits and harms with patients, providing the opportunity to develop realistic expectations and make informed decisions,” the study’s abstract said. The

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New Study Raises Some Questions On Performing Angioplasties

Posted On : January 6, 2015,   Time : 12:33 pm

Is an angioplasty always necessary? That’s one of the questions raised by a recent study that appeared in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine. The study focused on how frail Medicare heart patients fare at 263 major hospitals during the two major annual national conferences for cardiologists. It followed 29,000 patients who suffered heart attacks, heart failures or cardiac arrests between 2002 and 2011. Although the mortality rates for the heart attack patients were unchanged during the conferences, those patients were less likely to undergo angioplasty procedures, suggesting that such an aggressive procedure may not always be necessary.   SecondOpinionExpert’s panel of physician specialists includes world renowned cardiologis

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Computerized Patient Questionnaires May Do Better Job Gathering Info Than Doctors

Posted On : January 6, 2015,   Time : 12:29 pm

A computer system performed a better job at gathering relevant information from patients than individual physicians, according to a new study in the American Journal of Gastroenterology. According to the study, 75 Los Angeles-area patients with gastrointestinal symptoms were identified and ask to discuss their symptoms either directly with physicians or through a special computer-generated questionnaire that used an algorithm to generate a narrative for physicians.                             The computer-generated narratives were then compared to the narratives compiled

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