Practice Guidelines

Practice Guidelines summarize important clinical recommendations from major medical organizations and the federal government.

Feb 15, 2012 Issue
Guidelines for the Use of Long-Acting Reversible Contraceptives
The use of long-acting reversible contraceptives (LARCs) has increased from 1.3 to 5.5 percent over the past decade. There are three LARCs available in the United States: the etonogestrel single-rod implant and two types of intrauterine devices (IUDs; copper T380A and levonorgestrel intrauterine system [Mirena]). The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists has released a practice bulletin to guide physicians on the use of LARCs.

Feb 1, 2012 Issue
Respiratory Indications for Polysomnography in Children
Although assessment of sleep disorders in children relies on the history and physical examination, polysomnography (PSG) is sometimes used to aid in the diagnosis. The American Academy of Sleep Medicine has provided recommendations regarding the use of the test in children. This guideline focuses on the assessment and management of sleep-related respiratory conditions.

Feb 1, 2012 Issue
ACIP Releases 2012 Immunization Schedules
The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) of the of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) introduces the 2012 immunization schedules for young children (birth through six years of age), older children and adolescents (seven through 18 years of age), and adults, as well as the catch-up immunization schedule for persons who have not received a recommended vaccination on time or at the appropriate intervals.

Jan 15, 2012 Issue
ACP Updates Guideline on Diagnosis and Management of Stable COPD
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) affects more than 5 percent of U.S adults and is the third leading cause of death. The American College of Physicians (ACP) recently updated its 2007 guideline on the diagnosis and management of stable COPD to include new recommendations on when to consider pharmacotherapy, how to select an agent for monotherapy, and the preferred treatment for patients with respiratory symptoms and a forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1) between 60 and 80 percent of predicted.

Jan 1, 2012 Issue
AHA Updates Guidelines on CVD Prevention in Women
Major changes addressed in the American Heart Association's (AHA) 2011 guidelines on cardiovascular disease (CVD) are that benefits and risks found in the clinical practice setting were strongly considered, and recommendations were not based solely on benefits found in the clinical research setting. These guidelines now include information on the cost-effectiveness of various preventive methods and guideline implementation.

Dec 15, 2011 Issue
CDC Updates Recommendations for Contraceptive Use in the Postpartum Period
Initiating appropriate contraception in the postpartum period is important to avoid negative outcomes related to short birth intervals. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently reevaluated the safety of contraceptive use in the postpartum period.

Dec 1, 2011 Issue
Updated Guidelines on Management of Atrial Fibrillation from the ACCF/AHA/HRS
The American College of Cardiology Foundation (ACCF), the American Heart Association (AHA), and the Heart Rhythm Society (HRS) have released updated guidelines for the management of atrial fibrillation. Since the previous guidelines were issued in 2006, new data have become available on strict versus lenient heart rate control, the combined use of antiplatelet and anticoagulation therapy, and the use of dronedarone (Multaq).

Nov 15, 2011 Issue
CDC Releases Best Practices for the Use of PCR Testing for Diagnosing Pertussis
Diagnosing pertussis in the early stages can be difficult, because early signs and symptoms are often nonspecific. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing, a technique used to detect DNA sequences specific for Bordetella pertussis, is used for diagnosis; however, results should be cautiously interpreted, because they can often be false positive or false negative. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has developed best practices to help optimize the use of PCR testing for the diagnosis of pertussis.

Nov 1, 2011 Issue
ACP Releases Guideline on Intensive Insulin Therapy in Hospitalized Patients
The American College of Physicians (ACP) has issued a clinical guideline on the use of intensive insulin therapy in hospitalized patients with or without diabetes mellitus to achieve glycemic control and improve health outcomes.

Oct 15, 2011 Issue
ACIP Updates General Immunizations Guidelines
The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides general guidelines for the administration of its recommended routine vaccinations, which are aimed at preventing 17 diseases in children and adults. Sections of this guideline were recently updated, including revisions to contraindications and precautions, stricter criteria for selecting an adequate storage unit for vaccines, additional guidance for maintaining the cold chain in case of an unavoidable temperature deviation, and updated recommendations for vaccinations after hematopoietic cell transplant.

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