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Clinical Trials app: video review and giveaway

Recently Kat Sanders presented Clinical Trials app for iPhone in a guest post on my blog. Now I am bringing you a video review of this great app.

But that’s not all! Geoffrey Young of StopWatch Media, makers of Clinical Trials app, was kind enough to offer us 4 promo codes which you can use to download and install this app for free on your iPhone. We will be giving away these codes to 4 fastest readers. Let me just remind you that this app is worth $25.

UPDATE!!! Giveaway is over. Congratulations Richard, Matija, Martin and Peter!

Here is what you have to do:

  • Watch the video review
  • Write down in which minute of the video I talk about “Top Studies via Clinical Trials.app”
  • Send me an e-mail with your full name and correct answer
  • If you are fast enough, you will receive one promo code and instructions how to download Clinical Trials app for free!

Good Luck!

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The Usefulness of Sonohysterography

By-line:
This article is contributed by Sarah Scrafford, who regularly writes on the topic of how to become a pharmacy technician. She invites your questions, comments and freelancing job inquiries at her email address.

A recent study conducted at the Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia has found that sonohysterography (SHG) is a highly effective transvaginal ultrasound technique that improves the ability of doctors to diagnose adenomyosis, a condition that causes severe pelvic pain combined with abnormal and unexplained vaginal bleeding.

SHG is a relatively new technique that allows medical practitioners to view a woman’s uterine cavity more clearly. A soft, plastic catheter is placed in the cervix in conjunction with transvaginal ultrasound, and a sterile saline infusion passed through this tube expands the uterus and also provides a contrast to the lining, thus giving doctors a better idea of what the problem really is.

  • Sonohysterography is especially useful in treating women with infertility – it helps determine the presence of polyps, fibroids or tumors that prevent conception.
  • Besides, it allows doctors to examine the uterine cavity before any surgery like a hysterectomy or a D&C procedure.
  • It also helps in investigating unexplained infertility and repeated miscarriages.
  • It’s a good diagnostic tool to explore unexplained vaginal bleeding in pre and post menopausal women.
  • It allows examination and assessment of the endometrium and reveals endometrial abnormalities.
  • A sonohysterography that’s performed before a suggested hysterectomy can sometimes help you avoid the hysterectomy altogether. So you’re saved the cost, mental stress, physical pain, and recovery from a surgery.

The main advantages of a sonohysterography are:

  • It’s painless and can be administered in a normal ultrasound scan room
  • It does not require the patient to be sedated or under the influence of anesthesia.
  • It is not as expensive as an MRI scan which is normally used to investigate abnormal bleeding
  • It is commonly available at most healthcare facilities.
  • It helps avoid invasive diagnostic procedures
  • It has no side effects and is not very uncomfortable for the patient
  • Diagnosis is quick
  • There are no complications to be worried about

Reference:
Verma SK, Lev-Toaff AS, Baltarowich OH, Bergin D, Verma M, Mitchell DG
Clinical Observations. Adenomyosis: Sonohysterography with MRI Correlation
Am. J. Roentgenol. ; 192: 10.2214/AJR.08.1405

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Two interviews

Recently I gave two interviews regarding my scientific research of medical blogs and the Health Blogs Observatory.

The first one was conducted by Ed Silverman, a prize-winning journalist who used to maintain the extremely popular Pharmalot blog. He now contributes to the Association of Health Care Journalists blog, where the actual interview was published.

The second one was conduced by Norina Wendy Di Blasio, a member of the editorial staff of Il Pensiero Scientifico Editore, an Italian publisher established in 1946.Among books and journals, this Company publishes a weekly newsletter sent to 11 thousands Italian doctors. Currently they are publishing a series of interviews on Health 2.0. My interview was eventually published in both Italian and English.

Hope you will read the interviews and consider joining our team in conducting scientific research of the medical blogosphere at the Health Blogs Observatory.

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Laser for stitching wounds

Professor Abraham Katzir and his colleagues from the Physics Department at the Tel Aviv University in Israel have developed a laser which could one day replace surgical stitches. The machine is still in its early stages of development, but looks quite promising.

You will learn more by watching the video from Reuters below.

The video got you interested, so go on and learn even more about their Laser Tissue Bonding project.

Via DVICE.

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Health Blogs Observatory

Health Blogs Observatory
You should know by now that every time my posts are slower, I am creating something in the dark corner of my room :-). This was the case when I introduced the OpenECGproject, and it is the case now, when I am introducing the Health Blogs Observatory.

Health Blogs Observatory is an online research lab devoted to examination of the health blogosphere. It was created by the health bloggers and for the health bloggers.

Main goals of the project are:

Two major characteristics of the Health Blogs Observatory are collaboration and openness. This is why I would like to invite all health/medical bloggers to join the community and start contributing to it by adding their blogs to the web directory and participating in the design of the health bloggers survey.

To always stay informed about new developments at the Health Blogs Observatory, subscribe to our RSS feeds and follow us on Twitter.

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Buy a video game console for your grandparents

video gamesThe research paper which will appear this month in the journal Psychology & Aging suggest you should buy your grandparents a video game console, or a PC loaded with games.

This study found that adults in their 60s and 70s can improve a number of cognitive functions by playing a strategic video games. “When you train somebody on a task they tend to improve in that task, whatever it is, but it usually doesn’t transfer much beyond that skill or beyond the particular situation in which they learned it,” he said. “And there are virtually no studies that examine whether there’s any transfer outside the lab to things people care about.”

After testing several video games, the researchers selected “Rise of Nations,” which gives gamers points for building cities and “wonders,” feeding and employing their people, maintaining an adequate military and expanding their territory.

The study included 40 older adults, half of whom received 23.5 hours of training in Rise of Nations. The others, a comparison group, received no training in the game.

Both groups were assessed before, during and after the video game training on a variety of tests designed to measure executive control functions. The tests included measures of their ability to switch between tasks, their short-term visual memory, their reasoning skills and their working memory, which is the ability to hold two or more pieces of information in memory and use the information as needed.

There were also tests of the subjects’ verbal recall, their ability to inhibit certain responses and their ability to identify an object that had been rotated to a greater or lesser degree from its original position.

The researchers found that training on the video game did improve the participants’ performance on a number of these tests. As a group, the gamers became significantly better – and faster – at switching between tasks as compared to the comparison group. Their working memory, as reflected in the tests, was also significantly improved. Their reasoning ability was enhanced. To a lesser extent, their short-term memory of visual cues was better than that of their peers, as was their ability to identify rotated objects.

The video game training had no effect on their ability to recall a list of words in order, their enumeration ability or their ability to inhibit certain responses, however.

There was a correlation between their performance on the game and their improvement on certain cognitive tests, Kramer said.

Those who did well in the game also improved the most on switching between tasks. They also tended to do better on tests of working memory.

“In medical terminology, these would be dose-response effects,” Kramer said. “The more drug – or in this case the more training on the video game – the more benefit.”

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