FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn, speaking at the Reagan-Udall Foundation's virtual meeting, reassured participants that approval decisions for a COVID-19 vaccine "will continue to be based on good science and the same careful, deliberative processes which we have always used when reviewing medical products." The FDA chief also unveiled a new initiative, dubbed the Pandemic Recovery and Preparedness Plan, or PREPP, designed to "help systematically review FDA's actions to date and identify lessons learned."
Pediatric COVID-19 cases in the US increased by 90% between early July and early August, with nearly 180,000 new cases, according to a report by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children's Hospital Association. The researchers said youths make up 9% of COVID-19 cases and 0.4% of virus-related deaths in the US.
The ACR is supporting the American Medical Association's #MaskUp public health campaign, which calls on physicians to wear masks and combat misinformation amid the COVID-19 pandemic, with the College citing CDC guidance indicating significant reductions in COVID-19 cases if universal mask wearing is observed over the next four to eight weeks. "As physician leaders, we can set an example and help people understand their risks for transmission through clear and simple communication, rooted in science," the ACR said in an update for its members.
The University of Cincinnati Health's radiology department has achieved 102% overall recovery in imaging volumes compared with weekly pre-pandemic volumes 10 weeks after deploying a program using scheduling simulations and "meticulous" imaging volume tracking and control to address imaging backlogs, according to a study in Academic Radiology. The highest volume rebounds were in nuclear medicine, CT, interventional radiology and MRI, according to the study.
A study in the American Journal of Roentgenology showed unread second opinion radiology reports led to $63,375 in losses and wasted nearly 134 hours of wasted of radiologists' time over a year at a tertiary care center in the Netherlands. The wasted resources from unread second opinion radiology reports should prompt increased attention from policymakers, government agencies and insurers, as second opinion readings in the US rose from 4.3% in 2003 to 35% in 2016, researchers wrote.
Researchers found that CT angiography yielded 70% sensitivity, 100% specificity and 72.7% accuracy in identifying the source of bleeding in patients with acute head and neck hemorrhage who had negative digital subtraction angiography results. The findings in Emergency Radiology suggest that CTA may be included in the toolkit for acute head and neck bleeding and may help curb the use of catheter angiography, researchers said.
Using a high-performance 0.55T MRI scanner yielded similar performance in patients with known or suspected myocardial infarction, compared with a 1.5T MRI scanner, according to a study presented at the International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine virtual annual meeting. The findings indicate "that a lower field strength, paired with the high-performance hardware and contemporary imaging software, may be well suited to cardiac imaging," researchers said.
Thirty-three percent of surgeons, endocrinologists and primary care physicians said they ordered thyroid ultrasounds after their patients requested the scans, while 28% ordered the scans following patients' atypical thyroid function test results, which isn't recommended under the American Board of Internal Medicine's Choosing Wisely campaign, researchers reported in JAMA Surgery. The findings prompted researchers to recommend the development of a doctor's guide for thyroid ultrasound orders in order to curb overdiagnoses.
Non-small cell lung cancer incidence among men declined by 3.1% yearly between 2008 and 2016, and also resulted in a 6.3% annual decline in incidence-based NSCLC-related mortality between 2013 and 2016 due in part to new targeted therapies, researchers reported in The New England Journal of Medicine. The findings also showed that lung cancer-specific survival among men increased from 26% among those diagnosed with NSCLC in 2001 to 35% among those diagnosed in 2014, with similarly improved survival rates observed among women, and across racial and ethnic groups.
Future MRI systems are expected to feature reconfigurable hardware and real-time processing resources, along with new interfaces and additional sensors that will improve diagnostic capabilities and image acquisition times, said David Brunner of Skope Magnetic Resonance Technologies. Using machine learning and more sensors, as well as improving workflow integration, are crucial in making future MRI platforms support data enrichment, Brunner said.