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Moving Monoclonal Antibody Treatments for COVID From Hospital to Home

Antibody infusions help keep high-risk COVID-19 patients out of the hospital, but getting the therapy can be a challenge. One U.S. health system has found a creative way to address the problem: home infusions administered by paramedics.

Researchers found that the tactic was feasible, delivering antibody infusions to 144 COVID-19 patients in their homes over three months earlier this year....

Ten Years On, Gene Therapy Still Beating Most Cases of 'Bubble Boy' Immune Disease

Nine of 10 patients with so-called "bubble boy" immune disease who received gene therapy about a decade ago are still disease-free, researchers report.

The gene therapy was developed at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), to treat the rare and deadly immune system disorder formally known as adenosine deaminase–deficient severe combined immunodeficiency (ADA-SCID).

...

U.S. Psychologists See Big Spike in Demand for Mental Health Care

The number of Americans seeking treatment for anxiety and depression has soared during the COVID-19 pandemic, creating what a leading medical association terms a "mental health tsunami."

That's the key takeaway from a nationwide survey of psychologists by the American Psychological Association (APA).

"[The findings] highlight what we have been saying since the early days of the pan...

Gender-Affirming Mastectomies Give Boost to Patients' Mental Health

Gender-affirming breast removal (mastectomy) can greatly enhance a patients' mental well-being, a new study finds.

Gender-affirming mastectomy is the most common type of gender-confirming surgery, but there's "not a lot of information out there about how exactly these types of surgeries help people," said study co-author Dr. Megan Lane. She is a plastic surgery resident at Michigan Medic...

Still Too Few Women in Stroke Treatment Clinical Trials

Men still outnumber women in stroke therapy clinical trials, which means women may end up receiving less effective treatment, researchers say.

For the new study, investigators analyzed 281 stroke trials that included at least 100 patients each and were conducted between 1990 and 2020.

Of the nearly 590,000 total participants, 37.4% were women. However, the average rate of stroke a...

'Feel Good' Hormone Won't Help Ease Kids' Autism, Study Finds

Despite hints of promise from early research, a new clinical trial finds no evidence that kids with autism benefit from nasal sprays containing the "love" hormone oxytocin.

Researchers called the findings disappointing.

But they said the study also offers important information: Some parents of children with autism are already using oxytocin nasal sprays in the hopes of supporting th...

Many Addicts Turned to Telemedicine During Pandemic, But Does It Beat In-Person Care?

The coronavirus pandemic forced a significant shift to telemedicine treatment for addiction, but it's not clear whether that approach is better than in-person care, a new study finds.

Before the pandemic, addiction treatment services in the United States had many restrictions on telemedicine use, so only about 27% of addiction facilities offered telehealth services, while telehealth was u...

Clot-Busting Drugs Safe in Stroke Patients When Brain Aneurysm Hasn't Ruptured

Clot-busting drugs may be safe for certain stroke patients with brain aneurysms that haven't ruptured, researchers say.

An aneurysm is a bulge in the wall of a blood vessel. In the new study, patients had suffered an ischemic stroke, which is caused by blocked blood flow in the brain.

Even though clot-busting drugs are the main treatment for ischemic stroke, they're often not give...

1 in 7 Cancer Patients Worldwide Missed a Surgery Due to Pandemic

In yet another illustration of how the pandemic wreaked havoc on medical care, a new report shows that 15% of adult cancer patients worldwide didn't get potentially lifesaving surgery due to COVID-19 lockdowns.

"Our research reveals the collateral impact of lockdowns on patients awaiting cancer surgery during the pandemic. Whilst lockdowns are critical to saving lives and reducing the spr...

'Personalized' Brain Zaps May Ease Tough-to-Treat Depression

Imagine battling debilitating depression for years, trying everything but finding little or no relief.

That's what Sarah, 36, lived with most of her adult life.

"I had exhausted all possible treatment options," recalled Sarah, who did not want her last name used. "It [depression] had controlled my entire life. I barely moved. I barely did anything. I felt tor...

Merck to Ask FDA for Emergency Approval of Its New Antiviral Pill for COVID

Pharmaceutical giant Merck & Co. said Friday that it will seek federal approval for emergency use of its new antiviral pill molnupiravir, after a clinical trial showed the drug halved the risk of hospitalization or death when given to high-risk people shortly after infection with COVID-19.

The new medication is just one of several antiviral pills now being tested in studies, and experts s...

Tough Choices: Chemo That Can Save Kids With Cancer Can Also Damage Hearing

The cancer drug cisplatin can save children's lives, but often with the side effect of hearing loss. Now a new study shows that young children are especially vulnerable, and the hearing damage may begin early in the course of treatment.

The researchers said the findings highlight the need to screen kids' hearing during each round of cisplatin treatment, to catch problems early.

Saline Spray Could Slow COVID's Spread in the Lungs: Study

A saltwater solution may help stop the SARS-CoV-2 virus in its tracks, Brazilian researchers report.

However, although saline may keep the virus from replicating, it does not offer full protection against infection or a cure for COVID-19.

"It's not a single solution, and it would have to be used in the first few days after infection," said researcher Cristiane Guzzo, a professor of...

Drug Might Stop Heart Trouble Linked to Sickle Cell Anemia

Treating sickle cell anemia with the drug hydroxyurea may also reverse related heart abnormalities, a new study suggests.

Heart issues are common among people with sickle cell disease. Among them are enlargement of the heart and an impaired ability to relax heart muscles, a condition called diastolic dysfunction that can lead to heart disease and heart failure and death. Long-term treatme...

Biden Administration Buys More Monoclonal Antibody Treatments to Ward Off Shortage

As severe cases of COVID-19 rise and demand surges for monoclonal antibody treatments, the U.S. government is ordering more from two key suppliers.

Monoclonal antibodies, which are lab-engineered immune system proteins, can help trigger a healthy immune response against COVID-19 infection.

The Biden administration has also taken over distributing the therapeutics, to help avoid shor...

Prescriptions Rise for Veterinary Drug for COVID Patients, Even Though It Won't Help

Despite studies showing that it doesn't work against COVID-19, prescriptions for the anti-parasite drug ivermectin have climbed sharply in recent weeks as COVID-19 cases surge nationwide, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says.

Prescriptions for what was originally a drug for animals soared to more than 88,000 a week in mid-August from a pre-pandemic average of 3,600 per...

Monoclonal Antibody Combo Keeps High-Risk COVID Patients Out of Hospital

Treatment with two monoclonal antibodies lowers the odds of hospitalization for high-risk COVID-19 patients with mild to moderate illness, according to a new study.

"Our conclusion overall at this point is that monoclonal antibodies are an important option in treatment to reduce the impact of COVID-19 in high-risk patients," said senior author Dr. Raymund Razonable, an infectious diseases...

FDA Approves First Nerve-Stimulation Device to Aid Stroke Recovery

A first-of-a-kind nerve stimulation treatment for people who have problems moving their arms after a stroke has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

"People who have lost mobility in their hands and arms due to ischemic stroke are often limited in their treatment options for regaining motor function," explained Dr. Christopher Loftus. He is acting director of the FDA's ...

Could Electrode 'Pulses' Cut Back, Leg Pain Without Drugs?

A new approach to spinal cord stimulation may drastically reduce chronic back pain, a small pilot study suggests.

The study, of 20 patients with stubborn low back pain, tested the effects of implanting electrodes near the spinal cord to stimulate it with "ultra-low" frequency electrical pulses.

After two weeks, 90% of the patients were reporting at least an 80% reduction in their pa...

Age Can Impair a Man's Odds for Fatherhood: Study

It's no surprise to hear that women's fertility wanes as their biological clock ticks away.

But do men have a biological clock, too?

New research shows it's not exactly the same, but their likelihood of fathering a child does appear to decline, even with assisted reproductive technology, once they're past age 50.

Research completed among potential fathers both above and...

Acupuncture May Help Ease Prostate-Linked Pain in Men: Study

Men with chronic pain from prostate inflammation may get lasting relief from acupuncture, a new clinical trial finds.

At issue is a condition known as chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome, in which the prostate gland becomes inflamed and nerves supplying the area are irritated. That can cause pain in the perineum, penis, scrotum and low belly, as well as urinary problems and s...

Survivors' Plasma Won't Help Fight COVID in Patients With Early Symptoms

Early treatment with COVID-19 survivors' blood plasma doesn't prevent disease progression in people who have mild COVID-19 symptoms but are at risk for more severe illness, a new clinical trial finds.

"As physicians, we wanted this to make a big difference in reducing severe illness and it did not," said principal investigator Dr. Clifton Callaway, professor of emergency medicine at the U...

Texas Governor Has Breakthrough COVID Infection

Texas Governor Greg Abbott has tested positive for COVID-19 but has not experienced any symptoms, his office announced Tuesday.

Abbott, who is fully vaccinated, is being treated with Regeneron's monoclonal antibodies in an effort to shorten the duration of the infection, his communications director Mark Miner said in a statement Tuesday afternoon, CBS News reported.

"The go...

Dexamethasone Can Help the Sickest COVID Patients Survive. So Why Are Too Few Getting It?

There's strong evidence that the steroid drug dexamethasone can significantly lower hospitalized patients' risk of dying from COVID-19, but many who might benefit from it the most aren't getting it.

"Dexamethasone is a steroid that is used for the treatment of arthritis, inflammation and allergic reactions," explained Hemalkumar Mehta, who studied its use in treating COVID-19 patients. He...

RSV Respiratory Illnesses Rising for Babies, Experts Warn

While the resurgence of COVID-19 cases in the United States has been dominating the news, an old viral enemy has been making a quieter comeback.

In late spring, U.S. pediatric hospitals began reporting an unexpected rise in serious infections caused by respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).

Unlike COVID-19, RSV is a long-established foe that normally emerges in late fall, peaks in the ...

Keep Asthma Under Control to Avoid Worse COVID Outcomes: Study

Uncontrolled asthma increases the risk of severe COVID-19, researchers warn.

"This study focused on how COVID-19 outcomes might change for asthma patients depending on their level of asthma control," said study author Anny Xiang, a senior research scientist at Kaiser Permanente Southern California.

"We also saw that even in patients with active asthma, if they were using asthma medi...

New Drug Might Be Non-Surgical Option for Common Skin Cancers

An experimental gel has shown early promise in treating the most common form of skin cancer -- hinting at a potential alternative to surgery in the future.

Researchers tested the gel in 30 patients with basal cell carcinoma (BCC), a skin cancer diagnosed in more than 3 million Americans each year. The tumors rarely spread and are highly curable, usually through surgical removal.

Eve...

Type 2 Diabetes in Teens Can Bring Dangerous Complications in 20s

Children diagnosed with type 2 diabetes face a high likelihood of developing complications before age 30, a new study suggests.

Researchers found that among 500 children and teenagers with type 2 diabetes, 60% developed at least one complication over the next 15 years -- including nerve damage, eye disease and kidney disease.

Type 2 diabetes, which is often associated with older age...

It's Tick Season: Protect Yourself From Lyme Disease

When you're heading outdoors this summer, keep an eye out for ticks during and after your outing, health experts say.

These common parasites can transmit Lyme disease, a potentially serious illness.

Lyme disease is transmitted to people through the bite of an infected black-legged tick, also called a deer tick, explained Dr. Crystal Tank and Dr. Ashany Sundaram of Mountainside Medic...

Drug Shows Promise in Easing Dementia-Linked Psychosis

A drug that eases hallucinations in people with Parkinson's disease may be able to do the same for those with dementia, a new clinical trial finds.

The medication, called Nuplazid (pimavanserin), is already approved in the United States for treating hallucinations and delusions related to Parkinson's.

The new study, published July 22 in the New England Journal of Medicine, ...

PTSD Common After Sexual Assault, But Eases for Most

Most sexual assault survivors have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) immediately after the attack, but it tends to lessen over the following months, a new study finds.

"One of the main takeaways is that the majority of recovery from post-traumatic stress happens in the first three months," said study lead author Emily Dworkin, an assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral scienc...

One-Dose Blood Thinner Could Slash Blood Clot Risk After Knee Replacement

Anyone who's ever undergone knee replacement understands the real and troubling risk of post-op blood clots. Many patients are told take a daily blood thinner pill long after their procedure.

But a new study finds that a one-time injection of an experimental blood thinner called abelacimab may greatly reduce the odds for these clots in recovering knee replacement patients.

The rese...

Long Distance to Care Can Mean Worse Outcomes for Young Cancer Patients

Teens and young adults with cancer who live in rural areas or far from the hospital where they were diagnosed are more likely to have advanced cancer and more likely to die, new research shows.

"A number of studies have indicated that place of residence can influence cancer survival; however, few studies have specifically focused on geographic factors and outcomes in adolescents and young...

Busted Ankle? What's Better, a Cast or Brace?

Modern, flexible boots may be just as good as old-school plaster casts when it comes to treating broken ankles, new research suggests.

Often related to sports, traffic accidents or falls, broken ankles can be simple breaks in one bone or more complicated fractures that involve several bones, according to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Ankle fractures don't always require su...

Global Consortium Finds Genes That Drive Severe COVID-19

Why do some people infected with SARS-CoV-2 have either no or negligible symptoms, while others sicken and die?

Scientists who've pinpointed several genetic markers associated with severe COVID-19 say their findings could provide answers to that important question -- and targets for future treatments.

The investigators spotted 13 locations in human DNA that are strongly associated w...

Pharmacy Exec Behind Meningitis Outbreak Gets Longer Prison Sentence

A longer prison sentence has been handed to the founder of a now-closed Massachusetts pharmaceutical facility responsible for the 2012 meningitis outbreak that killed 100 people and sickened hundreds of others.

Barry Cadden, who was president and co-owner of the New England Compounding Center (NECC), received a 14-and-a-half year sentence from a federal judge Wednesday.

Cadden was ...

Gap in Breast Cancer Survival for Black, White Patients Shrinks, But Not by Enough

Racial disparities in breast cancer survival have narrowed in recent years, but Black women with the disease still have double the death rate of white women.

That's according to a study that tracked breast cancer trends in Florida between 1990 and 2015. Overall, deaths from the disease declined among Black, Hispanic and white women alike -- with the improvement being greater among minorit...

CRISPR Therapy Fights Rare Disease Where Protein Clogs Organs

Early research suggests that CRISPR gene-editing technology may some day lead to dramatic relief for patients struggling with amyloidosis, a rare but serious disease that can trigger organ failure.

"There are many different types of amyloidosis," explained study author Dr. Julian Gillmore, a researcher in medicine with the Centre for Amyloidosis and Acute Phase Proteins at University Coll...

Black Men Less Likely to Get Best Prostate Cancer Treatments

Black American military veterans with aggressive prostate cancer who would benefit from surgery or radiation are less likely to get those treatments than men of other races, despite equal access to health care, a new study finds.

"Despite great strides in prostate cancer care over the past few decades, racial disparities in care persist, and there remains a lot to be done to better unders...

Fertility Drugs Won't Raise Breast Cancer Risk

Women battling infertility are often given medications to help them conceive, and potential side effects are always a concern. Now, research suggests use of the drugs won't raise a woman's odds for breast cancer.

Researchers at King's College London in the United Kingdom analyzed studies from 1990 to January 2020 that included 1.8 million women of all reproductive ages who underwent ferti...

More Than Half of People With Asthma Aren't Seeing a Specialist

Among Americans with severe asthma, less than half see a specialist to manage their condition, new research shows.

The U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute recommends patients with severe asthma be referred to a specialist for evaluation and care.

To find out how many people with severe asthma see a specialist, researchers examined insurance data from more than 54,000 pati...

Many 'High Priority' Patients Aren't Getting Put on Kidney Transplant Lists

Many Americans who stand to benefit most from a kidney transplant may be missing a key window of opportunity, a new study finds.

The study focused on kidney failure patients who would be expected to live many years after receiving a kidney transplant. That generally includes relatively younger people without other major medical conditions.

In 2014, the U.S. kidney allocation system ...

Survivors' Plasma Helps Blood Cancer Patients Battle COVID-19

Giving COVID-19 survivors' blood plasma to blood cancer patients hospitalized with COVID-19 significantly improves their chances of survival, a new study finds.

"These results suggest that convalescent plasma may not only help COVID-19 patients with blood cancers whose immune systems are compromised, it may also help patients with other illnesses who have weakened antibody responses to th...

What Works Best to Ease Migraines?

A new research review offers good news for migraine sufferers: There are more pain-relieving options than ever.

In an analysis of over 100 published studies, researchers found that several drug classes showed good evidence they ease the pain of a migraine-in-progress.

Some of those medications have only become available in the past few years, opening up new options for migraine suff...

Many U.S. Seniors May Need Better Knee Arthritis Care

Just a fraction of older Americans with arthritic knees try physical therapy, pain-relieving injections or other more conservative measures before undergoing knee replacement surgery, new research shows.

And this may be driven by what type of doctor they see to treat their achy knees, as well as where they live, the study findings suggest.

Knee osteoarthritis occurs when the cartila...

'Laughing Gas' Shows Promise Against Tough-to-Treat Depression

When antidepressants fail to rein in hard-to-treat depression, the common anesthetic most know as "laughing gas" might be a safe and effective alternative, new research suggests.

The finding follows work with 28 patients struggling with "treatment-resistant major depression," a severe condition that investigators say affects about one-third of all patients - an estimated 17 million Americ...

A Real Headache: Racism Plays Role in Migraine Care

The color of your skin may very well determine how your headache gets treated, a new study warns.

The same percentage of white, Black and Hispanic Americans - about 15% - suffer from severe headaches and/or migraines, the investigators noted.

But the current analysis, conducted by 16 headache disorder experts, found that Black men are far less likely to receive headache treatment; t...

Newly Approved Drug Fights Lung Cancer Tied to Certain Genes

A newly approved lung cancer drug shows promise in improving survival in patients whose tumors carry a common and tough-to-treat genetic mutation, researchers say.

Sotorasib - brand name Lumakras - was approved May 28 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration as a targeted therapy for non-small cell lung cancer patients with tumors that express the G12C mutation in the KRAS gene, ...

Drug Lynparza Could Help Fight Some Early-Stage Breast Cancers

A twice-daily pill can dramatically reduce the risk of breast cancer recurrence in women who are genetically prone to the disease, researchers report.

The pill - olaparib (Lynparza) - works by blocking a natural enzyme called PARP that normally fixes DNA damage in healthy cells, but in these women actually promotes the growth of cancerous cells.

Early high-risk breast cancer patient...

Experimental Treatment Offers New Hope Against Lupus

An experimental antibody therapy may help ease skin symptoms from the autoimmune disease lupus, a small preliminary trial suggests.

Researchers found that a higher-dose version of the drug spurred a "clinically meaningful" symptom improvement for 87% of patients after one month.

But they also stressed that the findings are based on a small "phase 1" trial - a type of study designed ...