A study in Arthritis Care and Research found an association between severe obesity and elevated C-reactive protein level and erythrocyte sedimentation rate among women with and without rheumatoid arthritis. However, among men with RA, low BMI was tied to higher C-reactive protein levels and ESR, according to the findings based on two rheumatoid arthritis cohorts involving a total of 2,103 patients.
CDC researchers followed 19 Brazilian infants with Zika-related microcephaly until ages 19 months to 24 months and found all had one or more of six adverse outcomes, which were sleeping problems, feeding challenges, vision and hearing abnormalities, severe motor impairment and nonfebrile seizures. The findings in the agency's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report also showed three to five adverse events in 12 of the children, while two had experienced all of the adverse outcomes.
The American Academy of Pediatrics urged federal lawmakers and the White House to prevent gun violence by bolstering background checks, prohibiting assault weapons, and providing resources for research and surveillance, on the occasion of the fifth anniversary of the mass shooting event at Sandy Hook Elementary School, which killed 20 children and six adults. "We know what works, but mass shootings, suicides, homicides and other acts of gun violence will continue until we enact meaningful solutions to stop gun violence in its tracks," AAP President Dr. Fernando Stein said in a statement.
Teens who had considered smoking were more likely to smoke after seeing anti-smoking posters with disturbing images in a replica of a convenience store, according to a RAND Corp. study in Nicotine & Tobacco Research. The findings, based on data involving 441 youths ages 11 to 17, may indicate that at-risk youths respond to such graphic warning posters in a defensive way and that they downplay the displayed health risks, the researchers said.
A study in the New England Journal of Medicine found a bivalent meningococcal B vaccine that targets factor H-binding protein was safe and effective after two and three doses. The vaccine was tested in adolescents and young adults.
A new FDA webpage provides updated susceptibility information so clinicians know which bacterial or fungal infections likely will respond to certain drugs. The site is aimed at helping clinicians choose the best treatments and helping prevent the spread of resistant bacteria.
A Commonwealth Fund report on data from 2013 and 2016 showed there were fewer uninsured US adults and children overall, and for the past year a decreasing number of adults said they skipped a physician visit due to the cost. The number of at-risk adults who did not have a routine checkup over at least the past two years decreased from 14% to 12%.
A Merritt Hawkins Associates report found that primary care physicians are not the only subspecialty in short supply, with the US also needing pulmonologists, psychiatrists, dermatologists and other clinicians. The shortage was linked to an aging population and an aging physician population.
Pseudogymnoascus destructans, the fungus that causes deadly white-nose syndrome in bats, has been prevalent in Eurasia for thousands of years but only recently arrived in North America, according to a study published in mBio. The fungus disperses readily among bats, and though it has pushed some bat species to the brink of extinction, some populations in the Northeast have developed resistance to white-nose syndrome, principal investigator Jeffrey Foster says.
In a study presented at the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology's annual meeting, researchers found that children born to mothers who had a dog indoors for at least an hour a day while pregnant were significantly less likely to develop eczema as toddlers. Prenatal dog exposure was associated with lower odds that children had early or persistent eczema, the researchers found.