Paperwork error led to teen's radiation overdose
October 27, 2006 -- LONDON (Reuters), Oct 27 - A teenage cancer patient was mistakenly given massive overdoses of radiation for a brain tumor, mainly because of a mistake in paperwork, a report found on Friday.
Row in Italy over medical malpractice death figures
October 25, 2006 -- ROME (Reuters Life!), Oct 25 - A row broke out in Italy on Tuesday over controversial figures estimating that some 90 people a day die in the country's hospitals due to bad medical practices. Some newspapers described the figures as a "massacre," noting that the yearly number of about 33,000 estimated deaths was more than three times that in road accidents.
Pathologic degradation of collagen found in loosened hip replacement implants
October 24, 2006 -- NEW YORK (Reuters Health), Oct 24 - Successfully placed artificial hip joint implants frequently become loose many years after the original surgery. Now, researchers in Finland and the Netherlands have shown that this degradation is due, at least in part, to activated enzymes that target the fibrous connective tissue capsule that directly surrounds the joint.
U.K.'s GMC issues post-Shipman doctors' guidelines
October 24, 2006 -- LONDON (Reuters), Oct 24 - The General Medical Council (GMC) launched a national poster campaign on Monday to alert the public about new guidelines for doctors that encourage them to work more closely with patients.
Abnormal ventricular wall motion a cause of mitral regurgitation
October 23, 2006 -- NEW YORK (Reuters Health), Oct 23 - Dyssynchronized motion of the left ventricle is an independent risk factor for functional mitral valve regurgitation, Italian researchers report. In their study of 74 patients, tissue-derived Doppler-derived dyssynchrony index was measured according to time to peak systolic contraction of eight left ventricular segments supporting the papillary muscle.
Girl given massive overdose of radiation dies
October 19, 2006 -- LONDON (Reuters), Oct 19 - A schoolgirl cancer patient who was given a massive overdose of radiation has died. Lisa Norris, 16, died at her home in Ayrshire, Scotland, on Wednesday, surrounded by her family. Human error has been blamed for the overdoses during treatment at Beatson Oncology Centre in Glasgow but an investigation is continuing.
Benign ovarian cysts linked to lower breast cancer risk
October 16, 2006 -- NEW YORK (Reuters Health), Oct 16 - Benign ovarian cysts do not increase the risk of breast cancer, according to results of a meta-analysis of case-control studies conducted in Italy and Switzerland. In fact, benign cysts were associated with a 30% decreased risk of breast cancer, the investigators report.
Hospitals urged to ease mobile phone rules
October 16, 2006 -- LONDON (Reuters), Oct 16 - Patients and medical staff should be allowed to use mobile phones more freely in hospitals because the benefits outweigh the risks, researchers said on Friday. A 1997 study from the U.K.'s Medical Devices Agency showed that phones affected just 4% of devices at a distance of one meter, the researchers said.
Action plans ordered for 24 'weak' health bodies
October 13, 2006 -- LONDON (Reuters), Oct 13 - England's health watchdog has ordered immediate action at 24 health trusts judged to be "weak" in both the quality of care and their financial management. The 24 trusts were identified as part of the first annual health check of 570 National Health Trusts in England, replacing the previous "stars" rating system.
Genetic mutation doubles breast cancer risk - study
October 9, 2006 -- WASHINGTON (Reuters), Oct 9 - British researchers said they have found a new genetic mutation that doubled the risk of breast cancer in women who carry it. The gene, called BRIP1, helps to repair damaged DNA -- like some of the other known breast cancer genes, researchers reported in this week's issue of the journal Nature Genetics.
Radiotherapy cuts bowel cancer recurrence: study
October 9, 2006 -- LONDON (Reuters), Oct 9 - Giving bowel cancer patients radiotherapy before surgery to remove the tumor, rather than after, can reduce the risk of the disease recurring to as little as one percent, researchers said on Monday. They found that patients in the preoperative group had a lower rate of recurrence and a better five-year survival rate.
Head growth in infancy seen to determine later intelligence
October 9, 2006 -- NEW YORK (Reuters Health), Oct 9 - Head growth in fetal life and infancy is associated with later intelligence, results of a study published in the October issue of Pediatrics suggest. Moreover, catch-up increases do not appear to compensate for poor early growth.