June 2016

A Duke University trial is showing positive results in the application of an injectable fluorescent agent that improves the visualization of tumors and tumor margins during surgery. Current techniques include protracted delays in confirming margins with the possibility of further surgeries and the need for radiation therapy. Removing all of the tumor in the initial surgery would reduce the potential for recurrence and the need for further surgeries and assure prompt attention to post-surgical needs. Click here to learn moreClick for Abstract. 

Sponsored by the NIH, The Kidney Project is a collaborative effort making great progress toward a bioartificial implantable kidney device to treat end stage renal disease. It is designed to be a permanent solution to dialysis and bridges the need for transplant at a time when the supply of donor organs does not meet demand. Using microchip fabrication and the patient’s own heart and blood pressure to filter the blood, it requires no other power source and is unlikely to be rejected. Trials may start by the end of 2017. Click here to learn more.

It has been known for some time that UV light can kill bacteria and viruses. However, practical applications have been limited because of the significant safety concerns for both patient and medical staff. Researchers at Columbia University investigated the use of a much narrower ban of UV light that has proven to be effective against the pathogens but that does not damage the skin and eyes. This offers potential for a safer, and economical, approach to reducing SSIs (Surgical Site Infections) and for further investigation for fighting airborne pathogens as well. Click here to read more. Click here for Abstract.

Substantial differences were quickly evident in a trial comparing noninvasive ventilation techniques for patients with ARDS. Relative to the use of face masks, helmeted ventilation proved to be the most effective in increasing the number of ventilator-free days, in reducing the need for intubation as well as reducing the number of days spent in the ICU and in lowering the mortality rate. Click here to learn more
Click here for JAMA online

A Colorado University-Boulder study reveals that opioid painkillers can actually make pain worse and last longer even if taken for just a short time. The pain treatment is found to be contributing to the problem. However, the researchers have also identified a novel mechanism in drug development to avert this effect which would allow for some pain relief while potentially preventing the chronic pain. Click here to learn more.


Too much of a good thing can be hazardous. A patient can have a long list of medications especially if they have multiple providers. In addition to prescribed medications a list may include many over-the-counter medications, supplements and herbal remedies as well. This heightens the risk of interactions and errors in administration which can have detrimental effects. Informed guidance is crucial. Actively promoting good communication with the patient, encouraging them to provide complete information and providing thorough education are needed to ensure responsible care and safety of the patient. Click here to learn more.

Fasting-mimicking diet (FMD) is showing great results in research trials for MS. The low-calorie, low-protein diet initiates killing of autoimmune cells and leads to the production of new and healthy myelin-producing cells. The diet is safe under supervision and is a promising alternative for those without other treatment options. Click here to learn more.

Individuals experiencing pain or difficulty swallowing after eating food from the grill may need to be evaluated by a physician or in the Emergency Department. Having eaten food from the grill is pertinent clinical information. Loose bristles can fall off the grill brush during cleaning and end up in the food. If consumed, injuries to the mouth, throat, tonsils and internal organs can occur. Click here to learn more.