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Review of clinical treatment of bronchiolitis in infants reveals over-reliance on one test

(Boston) – An editorial published in this week's JAMA highlights the importance of physicians using all available clinical assessment tools when considering how to treat patients. Written by Robert Vinci, MD, chief of pediatrics at Boston Medical Center and chair of pediatrics at Boston University School of Medicine and Howard Bauchner, MD, editor-in-chief of JAMA, the editorial examines results of a study published in the same issue of the journal as an example of how doctors can often over-emphasize certain types of data.

Gender differences in experiencing orgasms

Among single adults in the U.S., women, regardless of sexual orientation, have less predictable, more varied orgasm experiences than do men, new research indicates. The study revealed that men experience orgasm during sexual activity with a familiar partner 85% of the time on average, compared with 63% of the time for women.

Rates of heart disease and stroke continue to decline in Europe

Deaths from heart disease and stroke are declining overall in Europe, but at differing rates, according to research, published online today (Wednesday) in the European Heart Journal [1].

Common antibiotic linked with heart deaths

The antibiotic clarithromycin -- widely used for treating common bacterial infections -- is associated with an increased risk of heart deaths, finds a study published on thebmj.com today.

The authors say their findings require urgent confirmation, given that many millions of people are prescribed the drug each year. But they stress that the absolute risk is small and that prescribing practice should not be changed until results have been confirmed in an independent study.

Leave the car at home for a healthier daily commute, say experts

Commuting to work by active (walking or cycling) and public modes of transport is linked to lower body weight and body fat composition compared with those using private transport, suggests a UK study published on thebmj.com today.

The researchers point out that the benefits were similar for both active (walking and cycling) and public transport, which may have important implications for transport and health policy.

Extended support helps patients stay smoke-free after hospital discharge

Smokers admitted to U.S. hospitals cannot smoke during their stay and could use this time as an opportunity to quit, but few are able to stay smoke-free after returning home. Now a study published in the August 20 issue of JAMA describes a program that increased the proportion of hospitalized smokers who successfully quit smoking after discharge by more than 70 percent. The system used interactive voice response technology – automated telephone calls – to provide support and stop-smoking medication for three months after smokers left the hospital.

Intervention helps smokers quit following hospital stay

Among hospitalized adult smokers who wanted to quit, a postdischarge intervention that included automated telephone calls and free medication resulted in higher sustained smoking cessation rates at six months than standard postdischarge advice to use smoking cessation medication and counseling, according to a study in the August 20 issue of JAMA.

Over-reliance of pulse oximetry for children with respiratory infection

Among infants presenting to a pediatric emergency department with mild to moderate bronchiolitis, those with an artificially elevated oxygen saturation reading were less likely to be hospitalized or receive hospital care for more than 6 hours than those with unaltered readings, suggesting that these readings should not be the only factor in the decision to admit or discharge, according to a study in the August 20 issue of JAMA.

Study examines incidence, survival rate of severe immunodeficiency disorder in newborns

Newborn screening performed in numerous states indicates that the incidence of the potentially life-threatening disorder, severe combined immunodeficiency, is higher than previously believed, at 1 in 58,000 births, although there is a high rate of survival, according to a study in the August 20 issue of JAMA.

Prevalence of HSV type 2 decreases among pregnant women in the Pacific Northwest

In a study that included approximately 15,000 pregnant women, seroprevalence of herpes simplex virus (HSV) type 2 decreased substantially between 1989 and 2010 while there was no overall decrease for HSV type 1, but a slight increase among black women, according to a study in the August 20 issue of JAMA.