May 2012

Empty shelves are a stark prospect for some physicians Photo by Bill Strouse RPh bstrophotocom

Drugs come up short for doctors, patients

Drug shortages, especially among injectables and cancer medications, have left physicians and patients alike wondering where their next doses will come from. Even simple antibiotics have become scarce commodities.

Programs start early to promote health careers

Rural facilities are recruiting their next generation of doctors early##mdash;from high school. They're offering paid, entry-level jobs to immerse the youngest scholars in a health care environment with the hope they'll pursue careers in the field.

Bed bug infestations can bring itchy, stressed patients

A surge in bed bug infestations leads internists to look for warning signs: not just rashes, but recent travel, confirmation by an exterminator, and bullous reactions.

Undiagnosed diseases program tries to crack the tough cases

When a condition stumps the experts, the experts turn to a center of last resort, the federal Undiagnosed Diseases Program at the National Institutes of Health. Medical teams take a “big picture” view and a fresh eye to pick up on what may have been missed.

Genetic tests are being used more, and they're worth it

Molecular diagnostics tests could cost Americans $15 billion to $25 billion by the end of the next decade. Physicians believe the tests are warranted, although they're skeptical about costs and their ability to interpret them properly for patients.

Membership in ACP is now more important than ever

ACP's incoming president urges his fellow physicians to promote membership in the College##mdash;the “doctor's doctors” in internal medicine.

States eye health care reform if federal law is overturned

The Supreme Court is ruling on the constitutionality of health care reform, leaving states in the position of having to plan for any eventuality. Letting the states take the lead in health care reform remains a viable option.

Drug shortages cause scrambles in primary care

Physicians are prescribing drugs and dosages they normally wouldn't to fill the gaps in drug manufacturing shortages. Learn more about what the federal government is doing about shortages and what internists can expect in the near future.

Warning about mixing protease inhibitors with statins

This regulatory update includes a warning on combining protease inhibitors and statins, approval of an orphan drug, and steps the FDA is taking to increase the supply of cancer drugs.

New tool for Annual Wellness Visits

The Health Risk Assessment is a winning proposition for practices to incorporate into their workflow to offer patients a personalized preventive plan and specific action steps to take.

Governance Committee seeks Regent and Treasurer candidates for 2013

The Governance Committee is beginning the process of seeking Regents and Treasurer to join the Board in May 2013.

Screening mammography in women aged 40-49: A report of the American College of Physicians and American College of Radiology consensus meeting

A joint set of talking points outlines areas of consensus between the American College of Physicians and the American College of Radiology when it comes to discussing conflicting recommendations on mammography.

MKSAP Quiz: Oral mucosal lesion

A 24-year-old male truck driver comes for a routine examination in order to renew his commercial driver's license. The patient is asymptomatic. On physical examination, vital signs are normal. Dentition is poor. An oral mucosal lesion is shown. There are no oral masses or ulcers and no cervical lymphadenopathy. What is the most likely diagnosis?.