Items in FPM with MESH term: Family Practice

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The Psychiatric Review of Symptoms: A Screening Tool for Family Physicians - Article

ABSTRACT: The psychiatric review of symptoms is a useful screening tool for identifying patients who have psychiatric disorders. The approach begins with a mnemonic encompassing the major psychiatric disorders: depression, personality disorders, substance abuse disorders, anxiety disorders, somatization disorder, eating disorders, cognitive disorders and psychotic disorders. For each category, an initial screening question is used, with a positive response leading to more detailed diagnostic questions. Useful interviewing techniques include transitioning from one subject to another rather than abruptly changing subjects, normalization (phrasing a question to convey to the patient that such behavior is normal or understandable) and symptom assumption (phrasing a question to imply that it is assumed the patient has engaged in such behavior). The psychiatric review of symptoms is both rapid and thorough, and can be readily incorporated into the standard history and physical examination.

Taking a Nutrition History: A Practical Approach for Family Physicians - Article

ABSTRACT: The association between nutrition and health has been clearly documented. Primary care physicians are expected to address nutrition and dietary behavior issues with their patients in the context of a brief clinical encounter. This article proposes the use of a short interview form, with specific suggestions for behavior changes that family physicians can use to help their patients meet currently accepted dietary guidelines. Answers to the questions on the interview form provide the physician with an overall sense of the patient's daily eating habits and help to identify major sources of saturated fat in the patient's diet. The patient is asked about the number of meals and snacks eaten in a 24-hour period, dining-out habits and frequency of consumption of fruits, vegetables, meats, poultry, fish, dairy products and desserts. Documentation of dietary changes can be accomplished using the suggested nutrition history form, and improvements in nutritional status can be measured using weight, blood pressure and laboratory test data.

Herbal 'Health' Products: What Family Physicians Need to Know - Article

ABSTRACT: Patients who self-medicate with herbs for preventive and therapeutic purposes may assume that these products are safe because they are "natural," but some products cause adverse effects or have the potential to interact with prescription medications. The United States lacks a regulatory system for herbal products. Although only limited research on herbs has been published, St John's wort shows promise as a treatment for depression. Ginkgo biloba extract is possibly effective for cerebrovascular insufficiency and dementia. Feverfew is used extensively in Canada for migraine prophylaxis but needs more rigorous study. Ephedrine has been regulated by many states because its misuse has been associated with several deaths. Echinacea is being tried as an agent for immune stimulation, and garlic is under study for cholesterol-lowering properties, but both require more study. Physicians should educate themselves and their patients about the efficacy and adverse interactions of herbal agents and the limitations of our present knowledge of them.

School Problems and the Family Physician - Article

ABSTRACT: Children with school problems pose a challenge for the family physician. A multidisciplinary team of professionals can most appropriately assess and manage complex learning problems, which are often the cause of poor school performance. The family physician's primary role in this process is to identify or exclude medical causes of learning difficulties. An understanding of the complicated nature of school problems, the methods used to assess, diagnose and treat them, and the resources available to support the child and family are essential to successful management. Various references and resources are helpful for a more in-depth study of specific school problems.

Home Health Care - Article

ABSTRACT: Home health care is the fastest-growing expense in the Medicare program because of the aging population, the increasing prevalence of chronic disease and increasing hospital costs. Patients and families are choosing the option of home care more frequently. Medicare's regulations are often considered the standard of care for all home health agency interactions, even when a patient does not have Medicare insurance. These regulations require patients who receive home health care services to be under the care of a physician and to be homebound. The patient must have a documented need for skilled nursing care or physical, occupational or speech therapy. The care must be part time (28 hours or less per week, eight hours or less per day) and occur at least every 60 days except in special cases. A detailed referral and specific care plan maximize the care to the patient and the reimbursement received by the physician.

Poliovirus Vaccine Options - Article

ABSTRACT: As a result of the success of immunization, indigenous wild poliomyelitis has disappeared from the United States. Of 142 confirmed cases of paralytic poliomyelitis reported in the United States from 1980 to 1996, 134 were classified as vaccine-associated paralytic poliomyelitis (VAPP). Persons with VAPP have a disabling illness, and this has caught the attention of the lay media. The risk of VAPP is one case per 750,000 doses distributed for the first dose of oral poliovirus vaccine (OPV) and one case per 2.4 million doses of OPV distributed overall. Because of this risk, most parents prefer a vaccine schedule that starts with inactivated poliovirus vaccine (IPV), even though extra injections are required. IPV does not cause VAPP. New studies show that high immunization rates can be achieved in disadvantaged populations with a schedule starting with IPV. The American Academy of Family Physicians now recommends that the first two doses of poliovirus vaccine should be IPV; that is, either an all-IPV schedule or a sequential schedule of two doses of IPV followed by two doses of OPV. OPV is no longer recommended for the first two doses and is acceptable only under special circumstances, such as when parents do not accept the recommended number of injections.

Topical Therapies for Glaucoma: What Family Physicians Need to Know - Article

ABSTRACT: Medication classes historically used in the management of glaucoma include beta blockers, miotics, sympathomimetics and carbonic anhydrase inhibitors. Because topically applied medications are more site specific, they are preferred in the treatment of glaucoma. Compared with oral medications, topical agents are associated with a decreased incidence of systemic side effects. With topical administration, conjunctival and localized skin allergic reactions are relatively common, whereas severe reactions, including death, are rare. Recently introduced topical agents for glaucoma therapy include dorzolamide and brinzolamide, the first topical carbonic anhydrase inhibitors; brimonidine and apraclonidine, more ocular-specific alpha agonists; and latanoprost, a prostaglandin analog, which is a new class of glaucoma medication. Latanoprost has the unique side effect of increasing iris pigmentation. Like their predecessors, the newer agents lower intraocular pressure by a statistically significant degree. Preservation of visual field, the more substantial patient-oriented end point, continues to be studied.

The Older Adult Driver - Article

ABSTRACT: More adults aged 65 and older will be driving in the next few decades. Many older drivers are safe behind the wheel and do not need intensive testing for license renewal. Others, however, have physiologic or cognitive impairments that can affect their mobility and driving safety. When an older patient's driving competency is questioned, a comprehensive, step-by-step assessment is recommended. Many diseases that impair driving ability can be detected and treated effectively by family physicians. Physicians should take an active role in assessing and reducing the risk for injury in a motor vehicle and, when possible, prevent or delay driving cessation in their patients. Referral to other health care professionals, such as an occupational or physical therapist, may be helpful for evaluation and treatment. When an older patient is no longer permitted or able to drive, the physician should counsel the patient about using alternative methods of transportation.

The Evaluation of Common Breast Problems - Article

ABSTRACT: The most common breast problems for which women consult a physician are breast pain, nipple discharge and a palpable mass. Most women with these complaints have benign breast disease. Breast pain alone is rarely a presenting symptom of cancer, and imaging studies should be reserved for use in women who fall within usual screening guidelines. A nipple discharge can be characterized as physiologic or pathologic based on the findings of the history and physical examination. A pathologic discharge is an indication for terminal duct excision. A dominant breast mass requires histologic diagnosis. A breast cyst can be diagnosed and treated by aspiration. The management of a solid mass depends on the degree of clinical suspicion and the patient's age.

The Home Visit - Article

ABSTRACT: With the advent of effective home health programs, an increasing proportion of medical care is being delivered in patients' homes. Since the time before World War II, direct physician involvement in home health care has been minimal. However, patient preferences and key changes in the health care system are now creating an increased need for physician-conducted home visits. To conduct home visits effectively, physicians must acquire fundamental and well-defined attitudes, knowledge and skills in addition to an inexpensive set of portable equipment. "INHOMESSS" (standing for: immobility, nutrition, housing, others, medication, examination, safety, spirituality, services) is an easily remembered mnemonic that provides a framework for the evaluation of a patient's functional status and home environment. Expanded use of the telephone and telemedicine technology may allow busy physicians to conduct time-efficient "virtual" house calls that complement and sometimes replace in-person visits.

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