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Weekly Summary -- February 1, 2019

Friday, Feb. 1, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- Here are what Pharmacist's Briefing editors consider the most important developments for the week of February 1, 2019

How to Prevent and Treat Eye Allergies

THURSDAY, Jan. 31, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- When it comes to allergies, allergic rhinitis with its congested, itchy nose gets a lot of attention. But for some, allergic conjunctivitis with itchy, watery eyes is the greater nuisance. You might even have both reactions.

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Vaping Tied to Rise in Stroke, Heart Attack Risk

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 30, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- People who vape might increase their odds of suffering a stroke, heart attack or heart disease, a new study suggests.

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Plunging Temperatures a Threat to People With Alzheimer's

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 30, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- The polar vortex that has enveloped much of the United States this week poses a special danger to people with Alzheimer's disease and other types of dementia.

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Flu May Up the Odds of Stroke, Neck Artery Tears

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 30, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- Flu can make you deathly ill, but it could also trigger a stroke or a rupture in your neck arteries, two new studies suggest.

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'Cocktail' Approach Offers Early Hope for New Male Contraceptive

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 30, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- The research is in its early days, but Chinese scientists say they're using bartenders' tricks to stir up a new, reversible male contraceptive.

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Vaping Beats Nicotine Patch, Gum in Helping Smokers Quit

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 30, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- For those who want to kick their smoking habit, switching to electronic cigarettes may offer better odds of success than nicotine patches, lozenges or gum, new research suggests.

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Increased Odds of Stroke, MI With E-Cigarette Use

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 30, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- Electronic cigarette use is associated with increased odds of stroke, myocardial infarction, and angina or coronary heart disease, according to a study presented at the American Stroke Association International Stroke Conference, held from Feb. 6 to 8 in Honolulu.

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Can Strict Blood Pressure Control Lower Dementia Risk?

TUESDAY, Jan. 29, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- Tight control of your blood pressure won't necessarily spare you from full-blown dementia, a new trial concludes.

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Cardiologist Groups Say Newer Blood Thinners Best Against A-Fib

MONDAY, Jan. 28, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- Newer blood thinners are recommended over warfarin for people with the heart condition called atrial fibrillation (a-fib) in updated treatment guidelines issued by three major American heart groups.

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What Illness Lands the Most Seniors in the ER?

MONDAY, Jan. 28, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- For seniors who often find themselves in the ER, complications from diabetes is the most common culprit, new research shows.

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Flu May Be a Factor in Many Kidney Failure Deaths

MONDAY, Jan. 28, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- Seasonal flu and other respiratory infections may be especially dangerous for kidney failure patients, researchers say.

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Flu-Like Illness Linked to Increased Risk for Stroke

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 30, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- Influenza-like illness (ILI) is associated with an increased risk for ischemic stroke and cervical artery dissection (CeAD), according to two studies presented at the American Stroke Association International Stroke Conference, held from Feb. 6 to 8 in Honolulu.

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Avoiding Full-Blown Diabetes Cuts Cardiovascular Risk

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 30, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- Midlife increases in fasting glucose (FG) with conversion to diabetes are associated with higher cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk, according to research published online Jan. 7 in Diabetes Care.

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Infective Endocarditis Related to Injection Drug Use Rising

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 30, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- The risk for infective endocarditis related to injection drug use increased from 2006 to 2015, according to a study published online Jan. 28 in CMAJ, the journal of the Canadian Medical Association.

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Intensive BP Treatment Does Not Reduce Dementia Risk

TUESDAY, Jan. 29, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- Treating systolic blood pressure (BP) to a goal of less than 120 mm Hg rather than 140 mm Hg does not result in a significant reduction in the risk for probable dementia, according to a study published online Jan. 28 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Public Health Interventions Could Cut Global Burden of Hepatitis C

TUESDAY, Jan. 29, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- Public health interventions can go a long way toward meeting World Health Organization hepatitis C virus (HCV) targets, according to a study published online Jan. 28 in The Lancet.

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MEESSI-Acute Heart Failure Risk Score Validated

TUESDAY, Jan. 29, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- The Multiple Estimation of risk based on the Emergency department Spanish Score In patients with Acute Heart Failure (MEESSI-AHF) can accurately predict 30-day mortality in patients with AHF, according to a study published online Jan. 29 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Prophylaxis for Gonococcal Eye Infections in Newborns Advised

TUESDAY, Jan. 29, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) has reaffirmed the recommendation for use of ocular prophylaxis for gonococcal ophthalmia neonatorum. This recommendation forms the basis of a final recommendation statement published online Jan. 29 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Financial Stress, Coronary Heart Disease Linked in African-Americans

MONDAY, Jan. 28, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- Financial stress may be associated with coronary heart disease among African-Americans, according to a study published in the February issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

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Report IDs Areas Lacking Good Practice in Health Tech Assessment

FRIDAY, Jan. 25, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- In a report published in the January issue of Value in Health, an ISPOR--The Professional Society for Health Economics and Outcomes Research working group indicates the lack of good practices in three areas of health technology assessment (HTA).

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Washington State Declares Health Emergency as Measles Spreads

MONDAY, Jan. 28, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- A statewide public health emergency was declared in Washington after a measles outbreak near Portland, Oregon, reached 31 cases on Friday. The outbreak in the Pacific Northwest is in what has been called an antivaccination "hot spot" in the United States, the Associated Press reported.

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Bone Health in Older Adults Not Improved by High-Dose Vitamin D

MONDAY, Jan. 28, 2019 (Physician's Briefing) -- There is little benefit for older adults taking high-dose vitamin D supplements to improve their bone strength and reduce the risk for falls, according to a study published online Jan. 8 in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

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Off-Label Uses in Dermatology Often Missing From Compendia

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 30, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- The compendia used by Medicare for making coverage determinations are inadequate for dermatologic illnesses, and there is considerable discrepancy between compendia, according to a study published online Jan. 23 in JAMA Dermatology.

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Few Patients With Type 1 Diabetes Meeting HbA1c Goals

TUESDAY, Jan. 29, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- Only one in five children and adults with type 1 diabetes (T1D) in the United States achieve American Diabetes Association (ADA) goals for glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c), according to a study published online Jan. 18 in Diabetes Technology & Therapeutics.

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New Guidelines Released for the Management of Venous Thromboembolism

TUESDAY, Jan. 29, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) The American Society of Hematology has released new guidelines for the management of venous thromboembolism (VTE), the first update since 2014.

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New Guidelines Introduced for Inflammatory Bowel Disease in Pregnancy

TUESDAY, Jan. 29, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- The American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) report, Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) in Pregnancy Clinical Care Pathway, was published online Jan. 15 in Gastroenterology.

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NOACs Recommended as First-Line Prevention of Stroke in A-Fib

TUESDAY, Jan. 29, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- For patients with atrial fibrillation, novel oral anticoagulants (NOACs) are recommended over warfarin to prevent stroke and weight loss is recommended for overweight and obese individuals, according to updated guidelines published online Jan. 28 in Circulation.

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Finasteride Not Tied to Increase in Prostate Cancer Mortality

TUESDAY, Jan. 29, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- Finasteride is not associated with an increased risk for death due to prostate cancer, according to a research letter published in the Jan. 24 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Paclitaxel Exposure in Vascular Device Not Linked to Mortality

MONDAY, Jan. 28, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- Exposure to aclitaxel in drug-coated balloons used in procedures for the treatment of symptomatic femoropopliteal peripheral arterial disease is not associated with mortality, according to a study published online Jan. 25 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Expanded Recall Announced for Ibuprofen Oral Suspension Drops

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 30, 2019 (Physician's Briefing) -- An expanded recall of ibuprofen oral suspension drops that may contain higher-than-specified levels of ibuprofen that could harm infants' kidneys has been announced by Tris Pharma, Inc.

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New CDC Tracker Shows Lower Influenza Burden This Season

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 30, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is providing in-season influenza activity totals for the first time, and the news is good.

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Large Insulin Price Hike to Be Investigated by U.S. Congress

TUESDAY, Jan. 29, 2019 (Pharmacist's Briefing) -- The soaring cost of insulin will be investigated as the U.S. Congress holds hearings into the high cost of prescription drugs, a lawmaker says.

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