Tag Archives | research

Preserving Research Funding in Dentistry

An interesting article titled “The vital role of research funding in preserving the oral health of the public and the dental profession,” appears as a guest editorial in the June 2015, issue of JADA and written by Maxine Feinber and et. al. The article discusses how it is critical that investments in dental, oral, and craniofacial research continue in the United States to help improve the nations oral health. The article states “…oral diseases persist on a scale that is poorly understood and wholly unacceptable… 3.9 billion people had oral conditions, with untreated dental caries in permanent teeth the most prevalent disease, affecting 35% of the world’s population….1 in 5 Americans is afflicted with dental caries…” The article says that around 4% of health care spending in the U.S. is for dental services. Even so we know little about oral disease and what it takes to eradicate it. The authors feel we need research on many different fronts and we need research on how to best prepare dental professionals. The authors state “Research also helps define us as a profession. The dental profession must continue to support clinically relevant science to advance our knowledge of comprehensive patient care, or it has the potential […]

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Patient Safety and the Culture of Cover-Up

An interesting article was written by George Lundberg titled “A culture of cover-up has slowed the patient safety movement” on December 1, 2012, on KevinMd.com located at http://www.kevinmd.com/blog/2012/12/culture-coverup-slowed-patient-safety-movement.html. In the article Dr. Lundberg says “Promoting patient safety, preventing medical error, preventing physician error, preventing errors in diagnosis, preventing nurse error, preventing surgical error, preventing communication error, preventing health illiteracy error, preventing errors from language barriers, preventing laboratory error, preventing computer error, preventing patient mix-ups, preventing right and left side of body mix-ups, preventing mistakes, since mistakes are the stepping stones to failure. Recognizing human frailty, recognizing physician humanity, recognizing system fallibility, owning up to problems, eliminating cover-up, acting out professionalism, recognizing that professionalism means self governance, individually and as groups. Self criticism, peer criticism, a culture of peer review, honesty, truth, disclosure, fairness, and negotiated settlements. Objective evaluation and commitment to quality. Quality improvement by preventing error. Systematic error, systematic prevention of error. An error caught before an action is taken based upon that error is, in effect, not an error. These are the fundamental truths that the patient safety movement is all about.” Dr. Lundberg later says “However, sad to say, improvement in documented actual patient safety has lagged […]

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Blood Levels in Fat Cells May Help Predict Migraine

A new study appearing in the journal Headache: The Journal of Head and Face Pain, looks at people experiencing two to twelve migraine headaches a month. In this study researchers found that measuring a fat-derived protein called adiponectin before and after migraine treatment is useful in revealing if headache patients felt pain relief or not. The researchers of the study are hopeful that finding this potential biomarker for migraine of adiponectin may be used for developing new and better migraine treatment options. Finding better treatment options for migraine sufferers is lucrative because roughly 36 million Americans suffer from migraine headaches which can last longer than 4 hours at a time. Women are three times to get migraines when compared to men. In the study the researchers collected blood from 20 women who visited 3 different headache clinics for an acute migraine attack during a period of a few years. The women had their blood taken before treatment with sumatriptan or naproxen sodium or a placebo. The researchers drew blood at 30, 60, and 120 minutes after the drug was given. The researchers then looked at blood levels of adiponectin along with two subtypes or fragments of total adiponectin in circulation: […]

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Retractions and Corrections From Scientific Misconduct

An interesting article appears in the Journal of Medical Ethics, January 2013, vol. 39, pp. 46-50, titled “Scientific retractions and corrections related to misconduct findings,” by David B Resnik and Gregg E Dinse. The authors explored 208 closed cases involving official findings of research misconduct published by the U.S. Office of Research Integrity from 1992 to 2011 in order to determine how often scientists mention in a retraction or correction notice that there was an ethical problem with the article. The issue of fraudulent articles appear in the scientific literature is a problem as many articles and the data within them can be falsified. See for example Industry Bias in Biomedical Science and The Right to Health and Information. The authors mention that typically when a retraction or correction is made to an article they are usually electronically linked to the original article so that others can be aware. The authors mention the blog RetractionWatch which keeps an eye on retractions and corrections to articles http://retractionwatch.wordpress.com/. The authors state “The main objective of our study was to determine, among retractions or corrections of articles affected by misconduct, how frequently scientists mention ethics or describe a specific ethical problem such as […]

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The Immune System in Critically Ill Children with Influenza

An interesting article discussed the results of a study looking at the immune system in critically ill children. The article describes a study published in early 2013 in the January issue of Critical Care Medicine. Recent evidence indicates that the suppression of innate immune system function can occur in critically ill patients. In this study patients with innate immune suppression produced reduced amounts of tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α  when their blood is stimulated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS). The article states “Results indicated that despite high levels of circulating pro-inflammatory cytokines, critically ill children with influenza demonstrated lower TNFα production capacity compared with healthy control subjects. Further, children who died from influenza had markedly lower TNFα production capacity compared with survivors.” Hence this study suggests that the reduction of immune function in these children who are critically ill may make them more prone to death. Hence, this suggest that therapies developed to target the immune system could potentially be an effective treatment for individuals who are critically ill. Investigators from 15 different children medical centers helped conduct this study. Typically the immune function is not measured in patients with influenza. Source: “Study: Monitoring of Immune Function in Critically Ill Children with Influenza Reveals […]

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