You don't need to be signed in to read BMJ Blogs, but you can register here to receive updates about other BMJ products and services via our site.

The BMJ Today: Women’s satisfaction with pain relief during labour

24 Feb, 15 | by BMJ

Good morning. Here’s what is new in The BMJ.

remifentanilResearch
Analgesics in labour. Are women more satisfied with pain relief obtained through a patient controlled device delivering remifentanil or epidural analgesia? Dutch researchers report on a head to head randomised trial comparing the two treatments.

News
Avoidable deaths. Improper monitoring and other errors led to the deaths of hundreds of people with mental health conditions in psychiatric wards and prisons, concludes an inquiry by the Equality and Human Rights Commission. more…

Elizabeth Loder on the proliferation of medical research reporting guidelines: A checklist too far?

24 Feb, 15 | by BMJ

elizabeth_loderIf reporting guidelines and checklists are the answer, what is the problem? That’s easy: their development was motivated by the realization that critical information was vague, missing, or misreported in an unacceptably high proportion of published medical research papers. Reporting guidelines take aim at this problem by specifying a minimum set of items that should be included in a published study report. These, of course, depend upon the study type, so there are different checklists for different sorts of research. The grand-daddy of them all is the CONSORT checklist, developed in 1996 to guide reporting of randomized controlled trials. more…

Kallur Suresh on the portrayal of young onset Alzheimer’s disease in Still Alice

23 Feb, 15 | by BMJ

Generation Q 12 June 2012Imagine you’re a world renowned professor of linguistics at New York’s Columbia University. You’ve written game changing books on how children develop their language proficiency in early life and are regularly invited to give scholarly lectures in academic institutions worldwide. You’re at the peak of your academic career, but start to notice that you struggle to find crucial words during your lectures and get lost while jogging on the familiar campus. It’s a very scary experience, one that you don’t necessarily want to acknowledge to yourself or share with others. more…

Richard Smith: Writing an obituary of the living

23 Feb, 15 | by BMJ

richard_smith_2014Just as I think everybody should have a living will, a plan for their funeral, and clear instructions on whether you want to be buried or cremated, so I advise thinking about your obituary or even obituaries. If you are a doctor you can be sure to get one in The BMJ so long as somebody writes one, but you might fancy trying for the newspapers. You might write it yourself, but many publications are sniffy about self-written obituaries. So you might do better to get somebody to write one for you, and that’s why Sir Anthony Grabham rang me. more…

The BMJ Today: Expanding, limiting, and personalising healthcare

23 Feb, 15 | by BMJ

Research

hospital_ward

• Does early discharge increase the risk of complications and death? A cohort study from Sweden in patients over 50 with hip fracture found an increased risk of death in patients who stayed in hospital for 10 days or fewer.

Expanding coverage of health insurance in Massachusetts increased access to knee and hip replacement and reduced disparities related to race and ethnicity but not income. more…

Richard Lehman’s journal review—23 February 2015

23 Feb, 15 | by BMJ

richard_lehmanNEJM 19 Feb 2015 Vol 372
703 In our syphilis lecture at medical school we were told that immigrants coming to the United States of America in bygone days were quarantined on Staten Island and had to undergo testing for Treponema pallidum using the Wassermann Reaction. An unlucky few would test positive not because they had venereal syphilis but because they had yaws, an infectious disease caused by Treponema pallidum subspecies pertenue. I don’t think I have given yaws another thought in the intervening 42 years, but I now learn that it is still very much around in 12 countries in Africa, Asia, and the western Pacific region. It is transmitted by direct skin-to-skin, nonsexual contact and causes a chronic, relapsing disease that is characterized by highly contagious primary and secondary cutaneous lesions and by noncontagious tertiary destructive lesions of the bones. It mostly affects children: hence this trial of single-dose azithromycin in children under the age of 15 on a Papua New Guinean island on which yaws was endemic. Its prevalence dropped steeply and there was no sign of emerging macrolide resistance in the little treponemes. more…

Samir Dawlatly: Can we have our (political) football back please?

20 Feb, 15 | by BMJ

With the budget of the NHS being over £100 billion, coming from taxpayers’ money, it is inevitable that health is overtly political. How such a large chunk of the nation’s budget is spent is the interest of those in government, as well as those who are governed. One of the consequences of this is that health becomes a political football for politicians to kick, discuss, debate, and accuse each other over. more…

Jeffrey Aronson: When I use a word . . . No

20 Feb, 15 | by BMJ

jeffrey_aronson“Aah,” the maximally low and back rounded vowel sound, produced by opening your mouth and glottis and phonating, is not the only phoneme that could have formed the first linguistic sound. Change the shape of your mouth, keep phonating, and the sound changes. Interjections such as “eh” and “er,” “oo” and “oh” can all be made in this way.

Now phonate with your mouth closed. It should sound like “mmmm.” Mm-hm. And if you open your mouth slightly and put your tongue behind your teeth it should sound like “nnnn.” more…

The BMJ Today: Tuberculosis, technology, and the art of good communication

20 Feb, 15 | by BMJ

News

• Andrew Dowson, director of headache services at King’s College Hospital, London, has been suspended from the UK medical register for four months for a “serious breach of professional standards” during the conduct of a clinical trial to test whether a new device for closing patent foramen ovale could cure migraine.

• A study from the London School of Economics and Political Science has found that lifestyles, rather than genes, are largely responsible for childhood obesity, concluding that policies to influence a healthier parental lifestyle could combat overweight children.

• The shortlist for the seventh annual The BMJ Awards has been announced, including sixty different entries over 12 categories. The awards, which celebrate the best of UK medicine, take place on Wednesday 6 May at the Park Plaza, Westminster. more…

Aser García Rada: Some thorny questions posed by our response to Ebola

19 Feb, 15 | by BMJ

Aser García Rada_BMJOver the last few months, I had been getting ready for being deployed to Liberia or Sierra Leone with a non-governmental organisation. Regrettably, owing to several doubts I had with the project, I finally will not be going. However, I have been trying to learn as much as possible about the Ebola virus disease (EVD) and I am concerned about some of the things I learned.

Last December, I attended a roundtable on this topic at the Institute of Health Carlos III (ISCIII) in Madrid. Alberto Infante, a former professor of international health at the National School of Public Health, pointed out some striking facts. Firstly, and as Google Trends show, as the risk of the disease spreading in Western countries drops, our interest sharply declines. more…

BMJ blogs homepage

The BMJ

Helping doctors make better decisions. Visit site



Creative Comms logo

Latest from The BMJ

Latest from The BMJ

Latest from BMJ podcasts

Latest from BMJ podcasts

Blogs linking here

Blogs linking here