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Medical Management of Obesity - Article
ABSTRACT: Obesity is one of the most common medical problems in the United States and a risk factor for illnesses such as hypertension, diabetes, degenerative arthritis and myocardial infarction. It is a cause of significant morbidity and mortality and generates great social and financial costs. Obesity is defined as a body mass index greater than 30. Many patients accomplish weight loss with diet, exercise and lifestyle modification. Others require more aggressive therapy. Weight loss medications may be appropriate for use in selected patients who meet the definition of obesity or who are overweight with comorbid conditions. Medications are formulated to reduce energy intake, increase energy output or decrease the absorption of nutrients. Drugs cannot replace diet, exercise and lifestyle modification, which remain the cornerstones of obesity treatment. Two new agents, sibutramine and orlistat, exhibit novel mechanisms of action and avoid some of the side effects that occurred with earlier drugs. Sibutramine acts to block uptake of serotonin, norepinephrine and dopamine, while orlistat decreases fat absorption in the intestines.
ABSTRACT: Because the prevalence of urinary incontinence increases with age, a working knowledge of the diagnosis and treatment of the various types of urinary incontinence is fundamental to the care of women. As the population of the United States ages, primary care physicians can expect to see an increasing number of patients with urinary incontinence. By obtaining a careful medical history and performing a comprehensive physical examination, the primary care physician can initiate successful treatment for the majority of patients without the need for invasive testing. This article offers a comprehensive approach to the evaluation and management of urinary incontinence in women.
ABSTRACT: High blood pressure in children and adolescents is a growing health problem that is often overlooked by physicians. Normal blood pressure values for children and adolescents are based on age, sex, and height, and are available in standardized tables. Prehypertension is defined as a blood pressure in at least the 90th percentile, but less than the 95th percentile, for age, sex, and height, or a measurement of 120/80 mm Hg or greater. Hypertension is defined as blood pressure in the 95th percentile or greater. A secondary etiology of hypertension is much more likely in children than in adults, with renal parenchymal disease and renovascular disease being the most common. Overweight and obesity are strongly correlated with primary hypertension in children. A history and physical examination are needed for all children with newly diagnosed hypertension to help rule out underlying medical disorders. Children with hypertension should also be screened for other risk factors for cardiovascular disease, including diabetes mellitus and hyperlipidemia, and should be evaluated for target organ damage with a retinal examination and echocardiography. Hypertension in children is treated with lifestyle changes, including weight loss for those who are overweight or obese; a healthy, low-sodium diet; regular physical activity; and avoidance of tobacco and alcohol. Children with symptomatic hypertension, secondary hypertension, target organ damage, diabetes, or persistent hypertension despite nonpharmacologic measures should be treated with antihypertensive medications. Thiazide diuretics, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, angiotensin II receptor blockers, beta blockers, and calcium channel blockers are safe, effective, and well tolerated in children.
Physical Training for Patients with Asthma - Cochrane for Clinicians
ABSTRACT: Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease is characterized by excessive fat accumulation in the liver (hepatic steatosis). Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis is characterized by steatosis, liver cell injury, and inflammation. The mechanism of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease is unknown but involves the development of insulin resistance, steatosis, inflammatory cytokines, and oxidative stress. Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease is associated with physical inactivity, obesity, and metabolic syndrome. Screening is not recommended in the general population. The diagnosis is usually made after an incidental discovery of unexplained elevation of liver enzyme levels or when steatosis is noted on imaging (e.g., ultrasonography). Patients are often asymptomatic and the physical examination is often unremarkable. No single laboratory test is diagnostic, but tests of liver function, tests for metabolic syndrome, and tests to exclude other causes of abnormal liver enzyme levels are routinely performed. Imaging studies, such as ultrasonography, computed tomography, and magnetic resonance imaging, can assess hepatic fat, measure liver and spleen size, and exclude other diseases. Liver biopsy remains the criterion standard for the diagnosis of nonalcoholic steatohepatitis. Noninvasive tests are available and may reduce the need for liver biopsy. A healthy diet, weight loss, and exercise are first-line therapeutic measures to reduce insulin resistance. There is insufficient evidence to support bariatric surgery, metformin, thiazolidinediones, bile acids, or antioxidant supplements for the treatment of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. The long-term prognosis is not associated with an increased risk of all-cause mortality, cardiovascular disease, cancer, or liver disease.
Screening for Coronary Heart Disease with Electrocardiography - Putting Prevention into Practice
ABSTRACT: Anxiety and depression are among the most common conditions cited by those seeking treatment with complementary and alternative therapies, such as exercise, meditation, tai chi, qigong, and yoga. The use of these therapies is increasing. Several studies of exercise and yoga have demonstrated therapeutic effectiveness superior to no-activity controls and comparable with established depression and anxiety treatments (e.g., cognitive behavior therapy, sertraline, imipramine). High-energy exercise (i.e., weekly expenditure of at least 17.5 kcal per kg) and frequent aerobic exercise (i.e., at least three to five times per week) reduce symptoms of depression more than less frequent or lower-energy exercise. Mindful meditation and exercise have positive effects as adjunctive treatments for depressive disorders, although some studies show multiple methodological weaknesses. For anxiety disorders, exercise and yoga have also shown positive effects, but there are far less data on the effects of exercise on anxiety than for exercise on depression. Tai chi, qigong, and meditation have not shown effectiveness as alternative treatments for depression and anxiety.