Clinical Topics

Functional Level Higher for Recent Amputees

DETROIT – Noting that multiple limb loss from combat injuries has increased as a proportion of all combat-wounded amputees in recent conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, researchers sought to determine how much function and quality of life had changed since… Read More

Pituitary Dysfunction Related to Blast TBI

CHICAGO – Pituitary dysfunction after blast injury may be an important, under-recognized, and potentially treatable source of symptoms in servicemembers who survive traumatic brain injury (TBI) from blast exposure, according to a new study. The research was presented recently at… Read More

Clay Hunt Suicide Bill Blocked in Senate, Falls to Pass This Session

Clay Hunt Suicide Bill Blocked in Senate, Falls to Pass This Session

By Sandra Basu WASHINGTON-Advocacy groups were upset last month that a bill requiring VA and DoD to conduct annual evaluations of their mental healthcare and suicide prevention programs was not passed before Congress finished its business in December. The bill,… Read More

Healthcare Providers Should Consider Ethnicity in Weight-Loss Counseling

Healthcare Providers Should Consider Ethnicity in Weight-Loss Counseling

Studies Show Unique Needs of Hispanic, Veteran Populations By Annette M. Boyle NEW YORK – Since 2003, the proportion of new military recruits who identified as Hispanic has increased by more than 50% and the number of Hispanic veterans has… Read More

Air Force Program Helps Prediabetic Patients Battle the Bulge

Air Force Program Helps Prediabetic Patients Battle the Bulge

SAN ANTONIO – For many veterans, leaving the service marks the beginning of a new battle — the constant fight against obesity. Sudden weight gain often accompanies the transition to civilian life, with more than 70% of veterans ending up overweight and at elevated risk of developing diabetes and a complex cascade of related health issues.

Murtha Center, USU Join NCI to Battle Common Foe: Cancer

Murtha Center, USU Join NCI to Battle Common Foe: Cancer

Alliance Research Not Limited by Private-Sector Restraints By Annette M. Boyle  BETHESDA, MD – In celebration of its second anniversary, the John P. Murtha Cancer Center at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, announced plans to substantially expand its… Read More

Algorithm Helps Identify Highest Influenza Activity

AMHERST, MA – A new tool can assist public health practitioners, researchers, and clinicians in defining the community-level onset of seasonal influenza epidemics. Using recent surveillance data on virologically confirmed infections of influenza, a team led by researchers from the… Read More

Rapid Vaccination Can Prevent Deaths, Costs in Flu Pandemic

STANFORD, CA – Rapid vaccination is key to averting deaths and saving tens of millions of dollars in treatment costs from a severe influenza pandemic occurring with a strain as lethal as human influenza A (H7N9), according to a dynamic… Read More

Flu Outbreak on Navy Ship Despite Mandatory Vaccinations

SAN DIEGO – Since the 1950s, a policy of mandatory annual vaccination for active duty personnel has been largely successful in limiting influenza epidemics in the military. The current DoD influenza vaccination policy mandates that all uniformed personnel receive seasonal… Read More

Senate Committee Chairman Decries High Costs for Potential HCV Cure

Senate Committee Chairman Decries High Costs for Potential HCV Cure

VA Suggests High Price Could Be Offset Future Savings

VA Fails to Follow Guidelines on Hepatitis B Follow-Up Testing Rates, Treatment

By Brenda L. Mooney BOSTON – Rates of serologic testing for hepatitis B (HBV) at the VA fail to meet levels recommended by the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD) practice guideline, according to new research. Researchers… Read More

New Analytics May Help Army Predict Which Soldiers Are at Risk for Suicide

New Analytics May Help Army Predict Which Soldiers Are at Risk for Suicide

Rate Spikes after  Psychiatric  Hospitalization New Analytic Methods May Be Able to Better Predict Who’s at Risk By Brenda L. Mooney BOSTON – Soldiers are at astronomical risk of suicide within the first year following hospitalization for a psychiatric disorder,… Read More

Danger of Pneumonia Increases with Veterans’ Worsened Health Status

Danger of Pneumonia Increases with Veterans’ Worsened Health Status

Higher Pneumonia Vaccine Rates Urged By Brenda L. Mooney PROVIDENCE, RI – With influenza season each year comes an even greater challenge for VA hospitals — a spate of pneumonia cases in older veterans. Recent research suggests the problem will… Read More

Partnerships, Drive-Throughs Seek to Increase Veterans’ Flu Immunization

Partnerships, Drive-Throughs Seek to Increase Veterans’ Flu Immunization

Free Shots Available at Walgreen’s Locations By Annette M. Boyle SAN FRANCISCO – The VA typically has influenza vaccination rates well above the national average but is trying some innovative measures to do even better. As part of the effort to increase immunizations,… Read More

New Treatments Offer More Options, Fewer Side Effects for HIV-Infected Veterans

New Treatments Offer More Options, Fewer Side Effects for HIV-Infected Veterans

Clinicians Find Advances ‘Mind-Boggling’ By Annette M. Boyle ATLANTA – Therapeutic options for patients with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) continue to expand, enabling more veterans to begin treatment with fewer adverse side effects and far less complicated regimens than even… Read More

Despite High Costs, VA Makes Sure Veterans Have Access to Newest HCV Drugs

Despite High Costs, VA Makes Sure Veterans Have Access to Newest HCV Drugs

By Annette M. Boyle WASHINGTON – While commercial insurers responded to the approval of the breakthrough drug sofosbuvir for hepatitis C (HCV) by implementing prescribing restrictions, limiting use to the sickest patients and charging higher co-pays because of the drug’s… Read More

Allopurinol Reduces Death Rate in Gout Patients

BOSTON – Despite fears of a rare but potentially fatal adverse reaction with use of allopurinol, the drug modestly reduces risk of death in patients with hyperuricemia and gout, according to a recent study. The article, published recently in The… Read More

Canakinumab Is Option for Patients Intolerant of Other Therapy

SAN DIEGO – Treating gouty arthritis is problematic in patients who have contraindications for, or are unresponsive or intolerant of, nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or colchicine. A new study has found, however, that canakinumab (CAN), a selective, fully human, anti-IL-1β… Read More

High Serum Uric Acid Associated with AF

High Serum Uric Acid Associated with AF MIAMI – What is the relationship between atrial fibrillation (AF) and high serum uric acid (SUA)? Noting that AF is related to oxidative stress, neurohormonal activation and inflammatory activation and that SUA is… Read More

Agent Orange-Related Non-Melanotic Skin Cancer Still Affects Veterans

HOUSTON – Decades later, exposure to Agent Orange puts Vietnam War veterans at high risk for certain types of skin cancer. That’s according to a report published earlier this year in Find Your Surgeon Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, the official… Read More