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blood test 12 articles

FDA approves first newborn screening test for intellectual disabilities

Federal drug regulators have granted approval for a first-of-its-kind blood test that can detect intellectual disabilities in infants by scanning variations in patients’ chromosomes that are linked to many developmental disorders. The laboratory test, known as CytoScan Dx Assay is made by medical technology company Affymetrix. It is the first FDA-approved test that analyzes the whole genome in a single procedure at very high resolutions. An intellectual disorder is a condition in which a person has limitations in mental functioning and skills such as communicating, taking care of him- or herself, and social skills. These limitations will cause a child ... Read More

Corroding metal on artificial hip caused patient neurological symptoms

When orthopedic surgeon Stephen Tower realized in 2006 that in order to continue his recreational cycling he needed hip replacement surgery, he picked the newest and seemingly most durable hip implant on the market at the time – a metal-on-metal device made by DePuy Orthopaedics, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson. The hip implant was specifically marketed to younger, active patients like Stephen. However, after a year Stephen was having pain in his hip and balance issues that caused him to crash his bike. Within the next year, he began experiencing more problems – ringing in his ears, sleep apnea, ... Read More

Ireland orders review for all patients with metal artificial hips

Irish health regulators have ordered a major review of all patients with artificial hips made with all metal parts. The order follows an investigation last year by the United Kingdom’s medical devices regulatory agency during which it was recommended that patients with metal-on-metal hip replacement systems be checked on a regular basis for indications of device failure and a type of metal poisoning caused when the device begins to corrode. Traditional hip implants are made with ceramic or plastic parts. A decade ago manufacturers introduced devices made with all metal parts expecting they would be more durable. However, the devices ... Read More

Diabetes organizations broaden definition of hypoglycemia to better serve patients

The Endocrine Society and the American Diabetes Association broadened the definition of hypoglycemia to include events during which a diabetic experiences symptoms consistent with low blood sugar without a supporting blood test. Hypoglycemia occurs when a person has low blood glucose concentrations that puts him at risk for injury or death. Acute hypoglycemia can cause confusion, loss of consciousness and seizures. The definition of hypoglycemia was broadened because experts noted that episodes of hypoglycemia can occur even when blood tests show glucose levels are in the normal range. The organizations also emphasized the importance of using hypoglycemic risk as one ... Read More

Researchers unsure how to evaluate metal ion levels in patients with metal-on-metal hip implants

Blood tests to measure the amount of metal ions in the blood of patients with metal-on-metal hip implants are inexpensive and provide helpful information. But they do not provide definitive information whether an artificial hip is functioning poorly and is likely to fail, new research shows. Chromium and cobalt ion levels are generally elevated in the blood of patients with all-metal hip implants. Because the implants have been found more likely to fail than traditional hip implants, medical regulators say that patients with the devices should be monitored on a regular basis for signs of failure. That monitoring generally includes a ... Read More

Repeated head blows without concussion may lead to long-term brain damage

College football players who experience repeated blows to the head may have long-term brain damage even if they never have concussions, according to a study published in PLOS One. Researchers at Cleveland Clinic studied blood tests, brain scans, and cognitive tests to assess brain trauma in 67 football players during the 2011 football season. None of the players had concussions, but blood tests showed that five players who experienced the hardest blows to the head had higher levels of an antibody associated with brain damage. Brain scans were performed on these five players and researchers noted abnormalities that were consistent ... Read More

Gene scanning gives more accurate, detailed results than conventional prenatal testing

Prenatal testing can give expectant parents insight into the health of their unborn child, but the tests are not foolproof. A new wider use of gene testing in early pregnancy that involves scanning the genes of a fetus can give more accurate results about potential health risks than current prenatal testing. A study published this week in the New England Journal of Medicine compared current prenatal testing to gene scanning and found that a surprisingly high number – 6 percent – of fetuses that were found to be normal by conventional testing were found through gene scans to have genetic ... Read More

Task force says routine ovarian cancer screens unnecessary, may cause harm

Women should not be routinely screened for ovarian cancer because doing so can put them at risk for unnecessary harm, a government task force recommends. The U.S. Preventative Services Task Force, an independent group of national experts, first made the recommendation in 2004, but restated its concerns based on recently published data from a large clinical trial. The trial involved 78,216 women, half of whom were screened with transvaginal ultrasounds and a blood test called CA-125. The other half of women were not screened at all. At the end of the study, whether women were screened had no bearing on ... Read More

Metal-on-metal hip implants suspected as source of pain for another patient

Patients needing hip replacement surgery should do their homework and avoid implants made with metal-on-metal parts, warns Tracie Ephgrave of the UK. “I just don’t want people to go through what I have,” she told the Gazette News.  In 2001, Tracie had a hip implant to help ease the pain and limited mobility she suffered from a form of arthritis she had as a child. She received a metal-on-metal implant designed to be more durable than traditional, ceramic models. But two years after receiving the implant, she heard a clunking in her hip joint. Soon after, her pain returned – with ... Read More

Could Charlie Sheen have tricked the drug tests?

Last week Charlie Sheen took blood and urine tests to prove his bizarre behavior was not caused by drug use and abuse. If anything, it left the public scratching their heads in disbelief. Could Charlie really be crazy, or did he somehow fake those tests? The blood test conducted on Sheen looked for traces legal prescription and illegal drugs that included amphetamines, barbiturates, benzodiazepines, cannabinoids, cocaine metabolite, methadone, opiates, phencyclidine, propoxyphene (the generic name for the newly banned drugs Darvon and Darvocet) and ethyl alcohol. The urine sample searched for amphetamines, barbiturates, benzodiazepines, cannabinoids, cocaine metabolite, methadone, opiates, phencyclidine and ... Read More