Clinical Topics

PTSD/Depression Combination Increases Anger in Veterans

IRVINE, CA — Veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are much more likely to have their tempers erupt if they also are depressed, according to a new study. The study, led by researchers from the University of California Irvine, appeared… Read More

Moderate A1c Reduction Lowers Heart Risks for Veterans With Diabetes

Moderate A1c Reduction Lowers Heart Risks for Veterans With Diabetes

VA Researchers Warn About Too ‘Tight’ Blood-Sugar Control By Brenda L. Mooney ANN ARBOR, MI — The VA’s balanced approach to glycemic control — keeping blood sugar levels low but not too low — appears to be the best course… Read More

Carotid Endarterectomy: Too Much or Not Enough at VA?

Carotid Endarterectomy: Too Much or Not Enough at VA?

By Annette M. Boyle SAN FRANCISCO — For selected patients with carotid stenosis, national guidelines recommend revascularization for primary or secondary prevention of stroke. Increasingly, though, it appears that veterans who could benefit the most from these procedures do not… Read More

Staff Shortages Prevent Full Implementation of VA Stroke Directive

Staff Shortages Prevent Full Implementation of VA Stroke Directive

Effort Seeks to Standardize Care Across VAMCs By Annette M. Boyle INDIANAPOLIS — Since the publication of the VHA directive on treatment of acute ischemic stroke (AIS) in November 2011, VA medical facilities nationwide have responded by adding structure to… Read More

Subdural Hemorrhage Predicted to Increase More Than 50% in VA Patients

By Brenda L. Mooney NEW YORK — Over the next 15 years, chronic subdural hemorrhage (SDH) will become the most common adult brain condition requiring neurosurgical intervention in the United States, but healthcare systems may not be prepared to care… Read More

Heart Failure Is Latest Serious Health Condition Linked to PTSD

Chronic Conditions Also Associated With Past Combat Experience Annette M. Boyle MINNEAPOLIS — Serious health conditions linked to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) continue to mount. Researchers recently uncovered a significant link between the condition and the risk of developing heart… Read More

New Guidelines: Six-Step Recovery Program Recommended for Military mTBI

New Guidelines: Six-Step Recovery Program Recommended for Military mTBI

Annette M. Boyle CHAPEL HILL, NC — Traumatic brain injury has been a signature injury of recent military engagements, with nearly 300,000 documented since 2000. Four out of five of those were mild traumatic brain injuries (mTBI) or concussions. Despite… Read More

Pillbox Program Helps Improve Adherence for Hypertensive Patients

Annette M. Boyle ASHEVILLE, NC — Screening, frequent appointments and other interventions enabled the VA by 2010 to bring blood pressure under control in more than three-quarters of patients with hypertension. Helping the remaining one-quarter adhere to medication regimens to… Read More

‘Undiagnosing’ Multiple Sclerosis: Managing Patients Who Really Don’t Have It

‘Undiagnosing’ Multiple Sclerosis: Managing Patients Who Really Don’t Have It

As many as 10% of patients diagnosed with multiple sclerosis actually don’t and are receiving treatment for the wrong condition.

VA Study Finds High-Dose Flu Vaccine Better Only for Veterans 85 or Older

VA Study Finds High-Dose Flu Vaccine Better Only for Veterans 85 or Older

Research Contradicts Other Recent Findings By Brenda L. Mooney PHILADELPHIA — As the latest influenza season finally abates, a new VA study raises questions about how effective the high-dose vaccine really is for the 65 or older cohort. Beginning at… Read More

Despite Outcry About Cost, New HCV Therapies Likely to Save Money at VA

Despite Outcry About Cost, New HCV Therapies Likely to Save Money at VA

Amid all the outcry over the high cost of new hepatitis C therapies, including congressional hearings, a simple fact has been overlooked: The VA expects to save money in the long run because of the drugs’ high cure rates. By… Read More

VA/DoD Issue First COPD Guideline Update Since 2007

VA/DoD Issue First COPD Guideline Update Since 2007

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) increasingly is viewed by clinicians as a systemic disease that is treatable, instead of a debilitating lung disease that offers few options for patients.

DoD Takes Lead Role in Push for Ebola Vaccine

DoD Takes Lead Role in Push for Ebola Vaccine

WASHINGTON — When dozens of patients suffering with fever, severe diarrhea, hemorrhage and vomiting started dying in Guinea in early 2014

Thromboembolic Events Increase in Hospitalized IBD Patients

SHREVEPORT, LA — Over the past decade, an increasing incidence of thromboembolic events has been observed in hospitalized patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), including Crohn’s disease, according to a new study. The study, published in the journal Vascular, was… Read More

Obesity May Indicate Less Severe Crohn’s Disease

DALLAS — Obesity, as defined by body mass index (BMI), appears to be somewhat of an advantage in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), including Crohn’s disease, according to a new study involving veterans. The study, published ahead of print recently in… Read More

Despite Risks, Female Veterans with Heart Disease Less Likely to Receive Statins

Despite Risks, Female Veterans with Heart Disease Less Likely to Receive Statins

HOUSTON — Heart disease is the No. 1 killer of women veterans, yet they remain undertreated

Heart Disease Added to List of Health Effects After Experiencing Combat

Heart Disease Added to List of Health Effects After Experiencing Combat

SEATTLE – While combat has long been known to increase the risk of musculoskeletal injuries, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

VA Educates Patients about Who Really Needs Testosterone Therapy

VA Educates Patients about Who Really Needs Testosterone Therapy

COLUMBIA, MO – Often spurred by advertising touting the benefits of testosterone supplementation for “low T,” veterans treated by the VA increasingly are requesting the replacement therapy.

Native Americans, Alaskans More Likely to Have Higher HbA1c Levels

OAKLAND, CA – American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI/AN) are more than twice as likely to have diabetes as non-Hispanic Caucasians, and the prevalence of diabetes in the AI/AN populations has increased by more than 68% since 1994. A study… Read More

‘Precision Medicine’ Approach Helps Predict Who Will Develop Diabetes

ANN ARBOR, MI – A new “precision medicine” approach to diabetes prevention uses existing information such as blood sugar levels and waist-to-hip ratios, rather than a genetic test, to determine who has the highest risk of developing the disease. The… Read More