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MEDICAL NEWS

Genetics of sarcoidosis. Biology approaches will soon help unravel the differing and common features of sarcoidosis with other granulomatous disorders and also with diseases with significantly different phenotypes and allow the development of new therapeutic strategies and tools. PubMed, Semin Respir Crit Care Med. 2014 Jun;35(3):296-306. (Also see: Sarcoidosis)

Joint damage progression in patients with rheumatoid arthritis in clinical remission. Do biologics perform better than synthetic antirheumatic drugs? This observational study confirms that the rate of structural damage progression in clinical remission is decreased taking biologics compared to synthetic DMARD. However, while the difference is statistically significant it is probably not relevant from a clinical perspective. PubMed, J Rheumatol, 2014 Aug;41(8):1576-82. (Also see: Rheumatoid Arthritis Treatments, Biologic Agents and Disease-modifying Antirheumatic Drugs)

Digital ulcers (DUs) as a sentinel sign for early internal organ involvement in very early systemic sclerosis (VEDOSS). Digital ulcers significantly correlate with gastrointestinal involvement and they may be a sentinel sign for early organ involvement. PubMed, Rheumatology (Oxford), 2014 Jul 26. (Also see: Digital Ulcers)

New Concerns About an Old Heart Drug, Digoxin. Digoxin may shorten the lives of patients with atrial fibrillation and the findings are prompting some experts to warn that the drug should be prescribed less widely. New York Times, 08/11/2014. (Also see: Cardiac Involvement)

Detection of pulmonary vasculopathy by novel analysis of oxygen uptake in patients with systemic sclerosis: association with pulmonary arterial pressures. Some scleroderma patients have decreased oxygen uptake, likely caused by sudden pulmonary arterial pressure increases during exercise. PubMed, Clin Exp Rheumatol, 2014 Jul 17. (Also see: Pulmonary Hypertension Diagnosis)

Aspirin May Cut Cancer Risk. A large British study shows that taking small amounts of aspirin over long periods of time reduces the risk of colon cancer and certain other cancers. New York Times, 08/11/2014. (Also see: Cancer)

Possible implications of TGF-alpha in eosophageal dysmotility in systemic sclerosis (SSc). These results point to a possible relation between TGF-α and oesophageal dysmotility in SSc, which is intriguing and requires further investigation. PubMed, Clin Exp Rheumatol. 2014 Aug 1. (Also see: Dysmotility in Systemic Scleroderma)

The war on cancer may NEVER be won: Cure could be impossible because the disease is so highly evolved. Cancer is as old as the earliest life on earth and may never be completely wiped out, scientists have warned. Mail Online, 08/22/2014. (Also see: Cancer)

Collagenous colitis in systemic sclerosis: an overlooked and treatable complication. Collagenous colitis should be suspected as a rare gastrointestinal complication of systemic sclerosis and clinicians should be aware of the possibility in SSc patients developing watery diarrhea. PubMed, J Clin Rheumatol, 2014 Aug;20(5):278-82. (Also see: Inflammatory Bowel Disease)

Scientists discover people with autism have too many brain 'connections'. Scientists say they have discovered the reason why some people suffer from autism. Mail Online, 08/22/2014.

Left atrial (LA) dysfunction detected by speckle tracking in patients with systemic sclerosis (SSc). 2D speckle-tracking echocardiography is a sensitive tool to assess impairment of LA mechanics, and may represent an early sign of cardiac involvement in patients with systemic sclerosis. PubMed, Cardiovasc Ultrasound, 2014 Aug 5;12(1):30. (Also see: Diastolic Dysfunction)

Patients denied transplants as donor organs are discarded. Transplant candidates are dying even while viable organs are being thrown out, because government regulations have forced centers to focus on overall post-transplant survival rates instead of the well-being of individual patients. The Bulletin, 01/03/2014. (Also see: Lung Transplants)

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