Airborne pollution can have serious consequences for the brain and the heart even at typical levels of exposure, according to the results of two studies published in the Feb. 13 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine.
In one analysis, researchers led by Gregory Wellenius, ScD, of Brown University in Providence, R.I., found that short-term exposure to fine particulate matter – even at levels allowed by the EPA – can increase the risk of ischemic stroke.
In the other study, a team led by Jennifer Weuve, ScD, of Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, and colleagues found that long-term exposure to particulate matter speeded up cognitive decline in older women….
- Warning over air pollution link to stroke: research (telegraph.co.uk)
- Air Pollution Linked to Cognitive Decline in Women (sciencedaily.com)
- Air Pollution Tied to Stroke, Memory Loss (nlm.nih.gov)
- Air pollution tied to stroke, memory loss (nation.com.pk)
- Short-term pollution triggers heart attack, stroke (vitals.msnbc.msn.com)
- Moderate 2.5 micron Particulate exposure increases stroke risk by 34% within 12-14 hours (nextbigfuture.com)
- This Is Giving Us Brain Damage (huffingtonpost.com)
Patients, providers and the public have much to celebrate. This week, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ Hospital Compare websiteadded central line-associated bloodstream infections in intensive care units to its list of publicly reported quality of care measures for individual hospitals.
Why is this so important? There is universal support for the idea that the U.S. health care system should pay for value rather than volume, for the results we achieve rather than efforts we make. Health care needs outcome measures for the thousands of procedures and diagnoses that patients encounter. Yet we have few such measures and instead must gauge quality by looking to other public data, such as process of care measures (whether patients received therapies shown to improve outcomes) and results of patient surveys rating their hospital experiences….
- Hospital Quality Compare (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services)- compares quality of care for certain medical conditions at more than 4,200 hospitals. The site also includes a checklist to help you choose a hospital
- Leapfrog Hospital Ratings – information on this site is derived from hospitals’ voluntary submissions of The Leapfrog Hospital Survey. More about the Leapfrog Group at their About Page
- AHRQ (US Agency for Health Care Research and Quality
- Medicare.gov includes
- Doctor Rating Web Site Health Grades is a Time Magazine “Best 50″ – How Trustworthy Is the Content?? (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
- Georgia hospitals rated on infections (ajc.com)
- Hospital Reviews Reflect Data On Hospital Outcomes (medicalnewstoday.com)
- The Cost of Satisfaction: A National Study of Patient Satisfaction, Health Care Utilization, Expenditures, and Mortality (bespacific.com)
- Surgical Outcomes-Based Measures Developed: Approval Marks Latest Step In Path To National Implementation (medicalnewstoday.com)
- The Leapfrog Group names Children’s Memorial a top children’s hospital for patient safety (prweb.com)
- The Leapfrog Group Names Virginia Mason Top Hospital of the Decade (prweb.com)
- Roswell Park Named to Leapfrog Group’s Annual Top Hospitals List (prweb.com)
- How patient satisfaction can kill (kevinmd.com)
- American Health Care System Gets Positive Prognosis In “U.S. Health Care: The Good News” February 16, 2012 At 9 P.M. Est On PBS With Correspondent T.R. Reid (prweb.com)
- National Quality Forum endorses 2 American College of Surgeons NSQIP measures (eurekalert.org)
- Skeptical Scalpel: Patient satisfaction and reality (gruntdoc.com)
- Nurse Navigators Providing Patient Satisfaction at Medical Center (prweb.com)
- Hospital Caregivers use MagnaSnap Paper Clamps at Bedside to Improve Patient Satisfaction Scores (prweb.com)
- Requiring doctors to give orders on patients they have not seen (kevinmd.com)
Molecular Secrets of Ancient Chinese Herbal Remedy Discovered [& related Alternative Medicine Resources]
For roughly two thousand years, Chinese herbalists have treated Malaria using a root extract, commonly known as Chang Shan, from a type of hydrangea that grows in Tibet and Nepal. More recent studies suggest that halofuginone, a compound derived from this extract’s bioactive ingredient, could be used to treat many autoimmune disorders as well. Now, researchers from the Harvard School of Dental Medicine have discovered the molecular secrets behind this herbal extract’s power.
It turns out that halofuginone (HF) triggers a stress-response pathway that blocks the development of a harmful class of immune cells, called Th17 cells, which have been implicated in many autoimmune disorders.
“HF prevents the autoimmune response without dampening immunity altogether,” said Malcolm Whitman, a professor of developmental biology at Harvard School of Dental Medicine and senior author on the new study. “This compound could inspire novel therapeutic approaches to a variety of autoimmune disorders.”
“This study is an exciting example of how solving the molecular mechanism of traditional herbal medicine can lead both to new insights into physiological regulation and to novel approaches to the treatment of disease,” said Tracy Keller, an instructor in Whitman’s lab and the first author on the paper….
Related General Resources for Complementary/Alternative/Integrative Medicine
- MEDLINE plus: Alternative Medicine Trusted health information links from the US National Institutes of Health (NIH). Includes basic information, news, organizations, specific conditions, multimedia, financial issues, and more
- Bandolier: Evidenced Based Thinking about Healthcare – Alternative Medicine
The site brings together the best evidence available about complementary and alternative therapies for consumers and professionals. It contains stories, systematic reviews and meta-analyses of complementary and alternative therapies with abstracts.
- National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine
NCCAM is dedicated to exploring complementary and alternative healing practices in the context of rigorous science, training complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) researchers, and disseminating authoritative information to the public and professionals.
- New York Online Access to Health (NOAH)
NOAH offers this selection of complementary and alternative therapies without endorsement.
- Office of Cancer Complementary Alternative Medicine
The NIH, National Cancer Institute (NCI) Office of Cancer Complementary and Alternative Medicine (OCCAM) was established in October 1998 to coordinate and enhance the activities of the National Cancer Institute (NCI) in the arena of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM).
- American Pain Foundation Provides New Tools and Resources on Safe Use of Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) More than 83 Million Americans Use CAM Therapy (prweb.com)
- Complementary and alternative medicine need more randomized trials (kevinmd.com)
- Dried licorice root fights the bacteria that cause tooth decay and gum disease (with related alternative medicine links) (jflahiff.wordpress.com)
- Upward Trend in Alternative and Complementary Medicine Use Revealed in Nation Center for Health Statistics Report Impacts Puma Method Travel Sickness Prevention Sales (prweb.com)
- Complementary and Alternative Medicine Treatments in Psychiatry (beyondmeds.com)
- Why Write About Alternative Medicine? Part One: The Media (jdc325.wordpress.com)
- Second Alternative Medicine Telesummit “Wellness Revolution 2” Launches November 8 (prweb.com)
- Integrative Medicine to Treat Eating Disorders (psychcentral.com)
- Scientists discover molecular secrets of 2,000-year-old Chinese herbal remedy (physorg.com)
- Vote on alternative medicine falls victim to dark arts of the internet (smh.com.au)
- Global Traditional Medicine Market to Reach US$114 Billion by 2015, According to a New Report Published by Global Industry Analysts, Inc. (prweb.com)
- Molecular secrets of ancient Chinese herbal remedy discovered (sciencedaily.com)
- Antipodean CAM (sciencebasedmedicine.org)
- Lobby Group Formed to Remove Alternative Medicine, Chiropractic Courses from Universities (truthsupport.wordpress.com)
- Expert Launches Natural Supplement Website and Alternative Medicine Blog (prweb.com)
- Herbal Remedies (prophet666.com)
- Chinese Herbal Medicine (acurelief.wordpress.com)
- Hangovers Cured For Good? Ancient Chinese Herbal Remedy Yields Amazing Results – Huffington Post (huffingtonpost.com)
From KevinMD.com, Mon Feb 13, 2012
I have decided to spam for public health.
Phone calls, text messaging, and even apps have been shown to help improve health and sustain behavior change, even in people suffering from profound mental illness. But when it comes to using these tools for public health, there are two problems. The first is that each message (whether via phone call or text) costs money. The second is that it’s quite hard to use those platforms for blasting messages to a whole population.
Read the rest of Using Twitter to deliver health improvement messages on KevinMD.com.
- The Text Message Era (mycricket.com)
- [Infographic] One in Five People Have Broken Up via Text Message (readwriteweb.com)
- HEALTHeME Launches Stress Reduction By Text Messaging; Research Shows 60% of Users Slashed Stress Levels (prweb.com)