Items in AFP with MESH term: Critical Pathways
Diagnosing Secondary Hypertension - Article
ABSTRACT: Secondary hypertension is elevated blood pressure that results from an underlying, identifiable, often correctable cause. Only about 5 to 10 percent of hypertension cases are thought to result from secondary causes. The ABCDE mnemonic can be used to help determine a secondary cause of hypertension: Accuracy of diagnosis, obstructive sleep Apnea, Aldosteronism, presence of renal artery Bruits (suggesting renal artery stenosis), renal parenchymal disease (Bad kidneys), excess Catecholamines, Coarctation of the aorta, Cushing's syndrome, Drugs, Diet, excess Erythropoietin, and Endocrine disorders. An algorithm showing the general strategy to help screen for factors involved in secondary hypertension is presented. Routine urinalysis, complete blood cell count, blood chemistry profile (potassium, sodium, creatinine, fasting glucose, fasting lipid levels), and a 12-lead electrocardiogram are recommended for all patients with hypertension.
Evaluation of the Subfertile Man - Article
ABSTRACT: Infertility affects 15 percent of couples, and 50 percent of male infertility is potentially correctable. Evaluation of the subfertile man requires a complete medical history, physical examination, and laboratory studies. The main purpose of the male evaluation is to identify and treat correctable causes of subfertility. In addition, many men seek an explanation for their condition, which can be discovered during their evaluation. Furthermore, the male fertility evaluation can uncover significant medical and genetic pathology that could affect the patient's health or that of his offspring. Although pregnancies can be achieved without any evaluation other than a semen analysis, this test alone is insufficient to adequately evaluate the male patient. Treatment of correctable male-factor pathology is cost effective, does not increase the risk of multiple births, and can spare the woman invasive procedures and potential complications associated with assisted reproductive technologies. Appropriate evaluation and treatment of the subfertile man are critical in delivering suitable care to the infertile couple.
Defending the Real Standard of Care - The Last Word
ABSTRACT: Exercise-induced bronchospasm is an obstruction of transient airflow that usually occurs five to 15 minutes after physical exertion. Although this condition is highly preventable, it is still underrecognized and affects aerobic fitness and quality of life. Diagnosis is based on the results of a detailed history, including assessment of asthma triggers, symptoms suggestive of exercise-induced bronchoconstriction, and a normal forced expiratory volume at one second at rest. A trial of therapy with an inhaled beta agonist may be instituted, with the subsequent addition of inhaled anti-inflammatory agents or ipratropium bromide. Nonpharmacologic measures, such as increased physical conditioning, warm-up exercises, and covering the mouth and nose, should be instituted. If symptoms persist, pulmonary function testing is warranted to rule out underlying lung disease.
Depressive Disorders - Clinical Evidence Handbook
ABSTRACT: Glycemic control in hospitalized patients who are not in intensive care remains unsatisfactory. Despite persistent expert recommendations urging its abandonment, the use of sliding-scale insulin remains pervasive in U.S. hospitals. Evidence for the effectiveness of sliding-scale insulin is lacking after more than 40 years of use. New physiologic subcutaneous insulin protocols use basal, nutritional, and correctional insulin. The initial total daily dose of subcutaneous insulin is calculated using a factor of 0.3 to 0.6 units per kg body weight, with one half given as long-acting insulin (the basal insulin dose), and the other one half divided daily over three meals as short-acting insulin doses (nutritional insulin doses). A correctional insulin dose provides a final insulin adjustment based on the preprandial glucose value. This correctional dose resembles a sliding scale, but is only a small fine-tuning of therapy, as opposed to traditional sliding-scale insulin alone. Insulin sensitivity, nutritional intake, and total daily dosing review can alter the physiologic insulin-dosing schedule. Prospective trials have demonstrated reductions in hyperglycemic measurements, hypoglycemia, and adjusted hospital length of stay when physiologic subcutaneous insulin protocols are used. Transitions in care require special considerations and attention to glycemic control medications. Changing the sliding-scale insulin culture requires a multidisciplinary effort to improve patient safety and outcomes.
Clinical Pathways: Effects on Practice, Outcomes, and Costs - Cochrane for Clinicians
ABSTRACT: Successful treatment of patients with ischemic stroke depends on the ability to treat within three hours of onset, because tissue plasminogen activator has not yet been proved effective beyond this time frame. The two major causes of delay in treatment are failure, on the part of the patient or family, to recognize stroke symptoms and failure to access the medical system most efficiently--by calling 911. Hospital stroke teams can shorten the time between patient arrival at the emergency department and treatment. Guidelines for the evaluation and treatment of potential stroke patients are presented, along with goal times for arrival-to-treatment intervals.