by Christian Sinclair, MD in Pallimed: a Hospice & Palliative Medicine Blog
Image via WikipediaIf you have spent anytime with a palliative care team in a hospital you will know of their efforts to essentially blacklist Demerol (meperidine) from use in the hospital. Some hospitals have removed it or restricted it from the formulary all together. In medical culture, demerol has been a go to opioid peri-OR and mostly favored by surgeons. The drug has been purported to be less likely to cause billiary spasm, but this seems to be impacted more by cultural i........ Read more »
Doufas, A. (2003) Dexmedetomidine and Meperidine Additively Reduce the Shivering Threshold in Humans. Stroke, 34(5), 1218-1223. DOI: 10.1161/01.STR.0000068787.76670.A4
Many of you may have heard from your doctor that doing Kegels is a good thing. It's certainly good for keeping your pelvic floor strong, to prevent problems like uterine prolapse following birth. It's also very good for keeping your bladder good and functional later in life. So do your Kegels, ladies.
However, Sci has always heard through the grapevine that Kegels were also good for...other things.
Well, are they?
Lowenstein et al. "Can stronger pelvic muscle floor improve sexual function........ Read more »
Lowenstein, L., Gruenwald, I., Gartman, I., & Vardi, Y. (2010) Can stronger pelvic muscle floor improve sexual function?. International Urogynecology Journal. DOI: 10.1007/s00192-009-1077-5
If you wanted evidence that we live in a post-genomic age you would need to look no further than the headlines in the science section of the newspaper last week. A man dubbed Inuk who lived and died in Greenland 4 000 years ago had dry earwax and might have gone bald if he lived long enough, Tutankhamun was inbred and had a cleft palate and Desmond Tutu has had his whole genome sequenced. What about the science behind the hook? Ed Yong has the the story of Inuk (whose genes tell us about migrat........ Read more »
Schuster SC, Miller W, Ratan A, Tomsho LP, Giardine B, Kasson LR, Harris RS, Petersen DC, Zhao F, Qi J.... (2010) Complete Khoisan and Bantu genomes from southern Africa. Nature, 463(7283), 943-7. PMID: 20164927
by Vincent Racaniello in virology blog
The suggestion that the retrovirus XMRV is the etiologic agent of chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) arose from a study in which the virus was found in 68 of 101 US patients. The virus was not detected in two independent studies of 186 and 170 CFS patients in the United Kingdom. A new Dutch study has also [...]... Read more »
Frank J M van Kuppeveld, Arjan S de Jong, Kjerstin H Lanke, Gerald W Verhaegh, Willem J G Melchers, Caroline M A Swanink, Gijs Bleijenberg, Mihai G Netea, Jochem M D Galama, & Jos W M van der Meer. (2010) Prevalence of xenotropic murine leukaemia virus-related virus in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome in the Netherlands: retrospective analysis of samples from an established cohort. British Medical Journal. info:/10.1136/bmj.c1018
Spongiform encephalopathies are transmissible diseases that can have a major economic impact on agricultural exports, and pose a significant challenge for surveillance of the food supply. Scientists generally believe that these diseases are transmitted via a self-propagating, aberrant conformation of the prion protein (PrP). This prion hypothesis suggests that PrP alone should be sufficient to cause symptoms or death. If this hypothesis is true, then it should be possible to reproduce the diseas........ Read more »
Wang, F., Wang, X., Yuan, C., & Ma, J. (2010) Generating a Prion with Bacterially Expressed Recombinant Prion Protein. Science, 327(5969), 1132-1135. DOI: 10.1126/science.1183748
There’s a spot near the west end of the Pueblo Bonito parking lot, close to the spot where guided tours begin, where you can yell something in the direction of the canyon wall and hear a very clear echo back. Some of the tour guides at Chaco regularly demonstrate this impressive effect when beginning their [...]... Read more »
Mills, B., & Ferguson, T. (2008) Animate Objects: Shell Trumpets and Ritual Networks in the Greater Southwest. Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory, 15(4), 338-361. DOI: 10.1007/s10816-008-9057-5
The draft version of DSM-V: Revenge of the Fallen has been online for a few weeks (1) and much has already been written about it (1, 2, 3, 4). Much focus has been on what is "new" and what is "gone." One feature that is shared by the majority of DSM diagnoses, the "clinical significance" criterion, might be on its way out. Typically this criterion reads "The symptoms cause clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other........ Read more »
Wakefield, J., Schmitz, M., & Baer, J. (2010) Does the DSM-IV Clinical Significance Criterion for Major Depression Reduce False Positives? Evidence From the National Comorbidity Survey Replication. American Journal of Psychiatry. DOI: 10.1176/appi.ajp.2009.09040553
The placebo effect is that spooky phenomenon that can cure people simply by convincing them they're getting real medicine (whereas they in fact are just taking a sugar pill). Although it's been reported in all sorts of areas of medicine, it's particularly potent for treating things like irritable bowel syndrome, pain, and depression.In fact, a recent analysis found that most of the effect of antidepressant medicine in people with depression was in fact due to the placebo effect (but the effect........ Read more »
Murphy, P., & Fitchett, G. (2009) Belief in a concerned god predicts response to treatment for adults with clinical depression. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 65(9), 1000-1008. DOI: 10.1002/jclp.20598
I know you've been on pins and needles waiting to hear, so I'm happy to report that the finalists are out! Congrats to everyone! There are some fantastic blogs in the running for some nice sums of cash. In a week or so, voting will open to allow research blogging members to vote for their favorites in a bunch of categories.
I am so honored that Observations of a Nerd was chosen as a finalist not only in the "Best Blog -- Biology" and in the "Best Lay-Level Blog" categories, but one of my post........ Read more »
Figure 1: Dogs are pretty intelligent.
Domesticated dogs seem to have an uncanny ability to understand human communicative gestures. If you point to something the dog zeroes in on the object or location you’re pointing to (whether it’s a toy, or food, or to get his in-need-of-a-bath butt off your damn bed and back onto his [...]... Read more »
Hare, B., Plyusnina, I., Ignacio, N., Schepina, O., Stepika, A., Wrangham, R., & Trut, L. (2005) Social Cognitive Evolution in Captive Foxes Is a Correlated By-Product of Experimental Domestication. Current Biology, 15(3), 226-230. DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2005.01.040
Prediction is an invaluable skill for navigating through complex environments. Somehow the brain generates predictions about perceptual inputs it's likely to receive using contextual information from recent memory. Statistical regularities are learned (e.g. movement and attack patterns of Mega Man bosses) and lead to less activation in corresponding brain areas. The brain is truly a miserly organ. "Why put in more work than I have to when I know what's gonna happen next", says the brain. Alink a........ Read more »
Alink, A., Schwiedrzik, C., Kohler, A., Singer, W., & Muckli, L. (2010) Stimulus Predictability Reduces Responses in Primary Visual Cortex. Journal of Neuroscience, 30(8), 2960-2966. DOI: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.3730-10.2010
Doppelmayr M, Klimesch W, Sauseng P, Hödlmoser K, Stadler W, & Hanslmayr S. (2005) Intelligence related differences in EEG-bandpower. Neuroscience letters, 381(3), 309-13. PMID: 15896490
Research has shown that marine protected areas (MPAs)—areas where fishing and other potentially destructive activities are regulated—are benefitting, not just the fish habitats they are known to aid, but nearby coral reefs as well. MPAs may benefit corals by restoring reef-based food webs and protecting damage from anchors and nutrient runoff.... Read more »
Research has shown that marine protected areas (MPAs)—areas where fishing and other potentially destructive activities are regulated—are benefitting, not just the fish habitats they are known to aid, but nearby coral reefs as well. MPAs may benefit corals by restoring reef-based food webs and protecting damage from anchors and nutrient runoff...
... Read more »
Some symptoms of OCD might be describable as pathological doubt, for instance, that one’s hands are clean or that the doors are locked. A review of OCD treatments states, “pathological doubt is one of the central manifestations of this illness. The person goes to the door, shuts it, locks it, feels that it is locked, knows that it is locked, turns around, and walks away. All of a sudden, he or she feels that it is absolutely necessary to go back and check. It appears clinically that the m........ Read more »
Dolbier, C., Jaggars, S., & Steinhardt, M. (2009) Stress-related growth: pre-intervention correlates and change following a resilience intervention. Stress and Health. DOI: 10.1002/smi.1275
Watkins, E. (2008) Constructive and unconstructive repetitive thought. Psychological Bulletin, 134(2), 163-206. DOI: 10.1037/0033-2909.134.2.163
For invasive plants, flowering time is a trait that may often be under selection during colonization—when a plant flowers determines its climatic tolerances, its vulnerability to herbivores, and its compatibility with the local pollinator community. In a study just released online at Proceedings of the Royal Society B, Colautti and coauthors examined the evolution of this trait in a plant that has swept across eastern North America since its introduction from Europe: purple loosestrife, and fo........ Read more »
Colautti, R., Eckert, C., & Barrett, S. (2010) Evolutionary constraints on adaptive evolution during range expansion in an invasive plant. Proc. R. Soc. B. DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2009.2231
Phillips, B., & Shine, R. (2006) An invasive species induces rapid adaptive change in a native predator: cane toads and black snakes in Australia. Proc. R. Soc. B, 273(1593), 1545-50. DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2006.3479
Vellend, M., Harmon, L., Lockwood, J., Mayfield, M., Hughes, A., Wares, J., & Sax, D. (2007) Effects of exotic species on evolutionary diversification. Trends in Ecology , 22(9), 481-8. DOI: 10.1016/j.tree.2007.02.017
Social factors affect success of marine reserves
... Read more »
Pollnac, R. et al. (2010) Marine reserves as linked social-ecological systems. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0908266107
The cod stock in the Baltic Sea collapsed in the 1990s because of overfishing and climate change, and this once-valuable fishery has not yet recovered. Could intensified harvesting of sprat—a small fish that eats cod eggs and competes with young cod for planktonic food—be the solution to restore cod, as some people suggest? ... Read more »
Lindegren, M., Möllmann, C., & Hansson, L. (2010) Biomanipulation - a tool in Marine Ecosystem Management and Restoration?. Ecological Applications, 2147483647. DOI: 10.1890/09-0754
When you say or hear a concrete noun, such as “apple”, what happens in your mind? Even without seeing a physical apple in front of you, your brain is drawing up an image of an apple, maybe the last one you ate or saw in the stores or on TV. A team of researchers at [...]... Read more »
Just, M., Cherkassky, V., Aryal, S., & Mitchell, T. (2010) A Neurosemantic Theory of Concrete Noun Representation Based on the Underlying Brain Codes. PLoS ONE, 5(1). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0008622
Today’s post is another research update by Dan Lorenz on the effect of surgical timing in multiple ligament knee injuries. There are pros and cons to both acute and chronic reconstruction. My experience has always been to be about the middle of the road, get them early but let them settle down a bit first, then get rehab going...
... Read more »
Mook WR, Miller MD, Diduch DR, Hertel J, Boachie-Adjei Y, & Hart JM. (2009) Multiple-ligament knee injuries: a systematic review of the timing of operative intervention and postoperative rehabilitation. The Journal of bone and joint surgery. American volume, 91(12), 2946-57. PMID: 19952260
Image by Getty Images via Daylife
I have earlier written about the entrepreneurial roller-coaster and how when entrepreneurs are in a happy mood, they focus on long-term vision related creativity; while when they are in negative mood they focus on the task at hand. I had also tried to relate this to prevention and promotion focus More >Rating: 0.0/10 (0 votes cast)
Related posts:Entrepreneurial rollercoaster- am happy, have vision; am sad, will focus on task There is a recent artic........ Read more »
de Vries, M., Holland, R., Chenier, T., Starr, M., & Winkielman, P. (2010) Happiness Cools the Warm Glow of Familiarity: Psychophysiological Evidence That Mood Modulates the Familiarity-Affect Link. Psychological Science. DOI: 10.1177/0956797609359878
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