Right, time to write. The threat of rain seems to have done wonders for patient numbers as the clinic is quite sparse for a Wednesday PM! Time to have another look at my ongoing summary of 2010:
Mammography under 50?: More or less? The Americans are still trying to decide. It is very nice to see the USPSTF trying to be as independent as possible and the reaction of the ‘experts’ and interested parties in the work generated speaks volumes for any independent observer. Medscape offered a good debate n the issue here. In my opinion the USPSTF represent the bRight side of this debate – no routine exams needed for under 50’s.
Goodbye Sibutramine – Guess what? Another drug gets withdrawn because it caused more CVAs and MIs. Health warning: a repeat episode is likely in the future with he next drug to make super millions for its par/tent holder. Just remember some basic physiology – there is no known physiological mechanism for weight loss known to the human body. Loosing weight is a pathological process. We are giving drugs to push people into pathology, physiologically speaking. Food tax is the only way.
Looking for an excuse to eat more chocolate? The good news from this systematic review is that your stroke risk and risk of dying all go down if you eat chocolate (22% & 40%). The bad news the amounts are very small compared to what the real world eats and the study is not well powered and ends with the famous research line: we need another study.
Screen heavy smokers for lung cancer: A large shows potential benefit, but the big screening questions remain as the following quote shows:
… a 7% reduction in all-cause mortality among people who were screened by CT, compared with those screened by chest x-ray. About 25% of all the deaths were due to lung cancer; the other deaths were related to causes such as cardiovascular disease…
Take home message, doing helical low-dose CTs reduces your mortality from non-lung cancer causes more than it reduces lung cancer caused mortality. And this is a heavy smokers screening program. Does anyone know who is selling the low dose helical scanners – perhaps their share value might be heading north.