June 13 - 17, 2011

Evidence for acupuncture PMS relief is shaky
Reuters (Wire Service)
...Jongbae Park, from the University of North Carolina School of Medicine's Acupuncture Clinic, said the findings don't cause him to question the effectiveness of treating PMS with acupuncture -- instead they highlight that the treatment is safe when done by a licensed professional. "I have no hesitation to recommend (acupuncture) for PMS when the cost is affordable," said Park, who performs acupuncture at the clinic himself.

Making the case for Rex (Under the Dome)
The News & Observer (Raleigh)
Dr. Bill Roper, UNC Health Care CEO, told the UNC Board of Governors this week why he thinks selling Rex is a bad idea. Roper briefed the UNC system's governing board about the mission, operations and future of a health care system founded in 1879 as a medical school and now a growing statewide health care network. Medical school training has expanded to Asheville and Charlotte, and, of course, the system owns Rex Healthcare facilities in Wake County.

Wellness clinic to care for Chapel Hill town workers
The Chapel Hill News
A new program has been established to provide worksite wellness programs and minor illness care to Town of Chapel Hill employees. Chapel Hill Wellness@Work was established through a partnership between the Town of Chapel Hill and UNC Health Care's Department of Family Medicine.

Gabby Giffords' Rosy Recovery Needs Reality Check, Say Experts
"Good Morning America" ABC News
..."If I had to guess, I would expect her to have some deficiencies for the rest of her life," said Dr. Anand Germanwala, chief of cerebral vascular and skull-based neurosurgery at the University of North Carolina Medical School. "The brain is a very unforgiving organ. "I certainly wish her all the best and hope she has complete recovery -- it is possible," he said. "But realistically thinking, this is a young lady in a high profile job, well-educated and eloquent. That requires a lot of brain tasks to successfully execute the job. To expect that now, it's not fair."

The Underage Drinking Epidemic
Parade Magazine
...“The adolescent brain is much more sensitive to alcohol toxicity than adults’, including being vulnerable to cell death,” says Dr. Fulton Crews, director of the Bowles Center for Alcohol Studies at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine. “Adolescents showed much more frontal cortical damage than adults. We found that one high dose of alcohol caused significant loss of brain stem cells.”

Rumor of STD led to slayings, relatives say
The News & Observer (Raleigh)
...A blood test takes eight to 12 weeks (after becoming infected) and lupus can cause false positive readings, said Dr. Peter Leone, an infectious disease specialist at the UNC School of Medicine. An outbreak can occur within one to two weeks of contracting the virus, but even so there is no way to know when someone became infected and from whom, Leone said. About 17 percent of American adults have the herpes virus, Leone said.

Hospital arithmetic has gotten out of hand (Opinion-Editorial Column)
The Chapel Hill News
We are blessed, in the Triangle, to have access to world-class hospitals. Duke University Medical Center is indeed a crown jewel for Durham. UNC Hospitals in Chapel Hill provides high-quality care for the citizens of North Carolina. Raleigh's hospitals are good enough to cause a frenzy over ownership.

Two new hep C meds approved
The Bay Area Reporter (San Fransico, Calif.)
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently approved the first two direct-acting antiviral drugs to treat chronic hepatitis C, boceprevir (Victrelis) from Merck and telaprevir (Incivek) from Vertex Pharmaceuticals. ...Speaking at a press conference, Joseph Eron from the University of North Carolina said he would only feel comfortable giving telaprevir to coinfected people in combination with these specific HIV medications until more drug interaction studies are completed.

4 tips for new doctors using social media
Ragan's Health Care Communication News
Dr. Ryan Madanick, a gastroenterologist at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, leads the charge to further medical education on Twitter.

UNC reaches deal to manage Pardee Hospital
Triangle Business Journal
The hospitals made the announcement Wednesday in a joint press release and also announced the hire of James (Jay) Kirby II for the position of President and CEO. Under the management agreement, UNC Health Care will manage all operations and Pardee will pay UNC Health Care $180,000 annually and the CEO’s salary.

Pardee Hospital Board Approves Affiliation & Management Agreement With UNC Health Care
WHKP radio
At Wednesday's meeting of the Pardee Hospital Board of Directors, the Board approved an affiliation agreement with UNC Health Care System. This management agreement can help achieve cost savings and increased services for residents.

Pace of Alzheimer's treatment, research among frustrations
Dr. Dan Kaufer, a dementia expert with UNC Health Care, says, “It's really, in many ways, a silent epidemic.” Kaufer says he is frustrated by the slow progress in the treatment of Alzheimer’s. Unlike attacking a cancerous tumor or high blood pressure, gauging the success of dementia care remains painfully elusive.

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