"The Greatest Danger For Most Of Us Is Not That Our Aim Is Too High And We
Miss It But That It Is Too Low And We Reach It." Michelangelo
This popular drug is useless in
This popular drug is useless in osteoarthritis
Acetaminophen Ineffective in Osteoarthritis
Jennie Smith writing in Rheumatology News reported on a study published in
the Lancet. Researchers showed that the results of 74 randomized trials
enrolling nearly 60,000 patients with osteoarthritis of the hip or knee were
surprising. When compared with standard non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs,
acetaminophen had virtually no effect on pain symptoms.
Comment: Acetaminophen is useless in osteoarthritis. We have suspected this
for a long time and we now have definitive proof.
A commonly used over the counter drug causes dementia… next
Anticholinergic Medications May Be Linked To Increased
Mandy Oaklander writing in Time reported researchers “analyzed already
existing data from 451 people around ages 70-75 who had normal brains,” then
“examined the results of memory tests, MRI brain scans and other neuroimaging
data – all while paying particular attention to people who said they took
anticholinergic” medications. Seniors “who regularly took at least one
anticholinergic drug- sold over the counter and by prescription as sleep aids
and for chronic diseases including hypertension, cardiovascular disease and
chronic obstructive pulmonary disease according to Ben Tinker of CNN- showed
poorer cognition, lower brain volumes and less glucose metabolism in the whole
brain and the temporal lobe” than seniors who did not. The study was published
online in JAMA Neurology.
Comment: Wow. The list of what we can take that doesn’t cause bad side
Uric acid lowering therapy is important for patients with symptomatic gout.
However, for certain groups there is a risk of treatment… next
HLA-B*5801 Testing Needed in Asians and Blacks with Gout
Dr. Jack Cush in Rheum Now reported on a study by Choi and colleagues who
analyzed US hospitalizations (2009–2013) to assess the frequency and racial
distribution of patients hospitalized with Stevens-Johnson Syndrome (SJS) and
Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis (TEN) related to the use of urate-lowering
(ULT) therapy (predominantly allopurinol). They found 606 hospitalizations while
receiving ULT. There was an overrepresentation of Asians (27%) and Blacks (26%),
and an underrepresentation of Whites (29%) and Hispanics (% too low to report).
These SJS/TEN events were 12 time more frequent in
Asians, and 5 times more
frequent in Blacks when compared to Whites (reference group).
The HLA-B*5801 allele has been strongly linked with the allopurinol
hypersensitivity syndrome and has been found in higher frequency in certain
populations, especially Koreans, Japanese, Thai and Han Chinese - and in some
Europeans. This study demonstrates the potential use of HLA-B*5801 in U.S.
Asians and Blacks.
Comment: Really important info to know when treating certain racial groups
Disturbing risk of knee replacement… next
Heart Attack After Total Knee Replacement
Bruce Jancin writing in rheumatology News reported on a British study of
more than 13,000 patients who underwent total knee replacement. A matched
nonsurgical group was used as control. During the first month after knee
there was an almost 9 fold increase in the risk of heart attack
compared with the control group. At 3 months the risk was four times greater and
at 6 months 2 times greater. Another finding was that the risk of venous
thromboembolism- a blood clot that goes to the lungs- remained elevated for 5
Comment: Wow… not good news for you if you want to have a knee replaced.
Changing your gut bugs may be the next step in the future of medicine…
Pharmaceutical Companies Considering Potential of Treating Microbiome
Elizabeth Preston writing in STAT reported that “as scientists learn more
about the microbiome’s role in conditions ranging from allergies to anxiety to
cancer,” pharmaceutical companies are “paying close attention.” The goal of such
research is to “treat or prevent some of our most intractable diseases”
“delivering drugs to the microbiome.”
The microbiome has generated a ton of interest in researchers across all
disciplines. It will be interesting to see what happens over the next few years.
New osteoporosis drugs work well but may worsen rheumatoid arthritis…
Anti-sclerostin osteoporosis drugs worsen RA
Jeff Evans writing in Rheumatology news reported antisclerostin antibodies
increase bone mineral density and have done well in clinical trials in
osteoporosis. However, they may have the opposite effect in rheumatoid arthritis
according to a German study. Researchers showed these drugs accelerate joint
damage in mouse models of rheumatoid arthritis.
Comment: Often, new drugs aimed at helping one condition can worsen
Shingles Vaccine… when to give it… a Conundrum
Expert advice about shingles vaccine in rheumatoid arthritis
Bruca Jancin writing in Rheumatology News reported on a lecture given by
Dr. John Cush at the Winter Rheumatology Symposium. While the recommendation is
against giving zoster vaccine to patients on biologics, Dr. Cush did a survey of
more than 200 patients inadvertently given the vaccine while on biologics. Not
one case of shingles occurred. A study conducted in Alabama of 633 patients on
biologics given inadvertent zoster vaccine also failed to show an increase in
shingles risk and actually showed a 39% reduction in shingles risk.
Comment: Reassuring news that shingles vaccine, even though it is live, is
not the end of the world if given to patients on biologic therapy. That being
said, I still think that a 4 week waiting period before vaccination while
holding a biologic is prudent.
Good news for tequila drinker next…
Tequila Could Be the Basis for a New Osteoporosis Treatment
Caitlyn Fitzpatrick writing in MD reported in addition to being the most
important ingredient in margaritas, substances derived from tequila can play an
important role in health.
Not only did new research find that Agave tequilana (or tequila agave) may help
maintain bone health, but it could also be the basis for a new osteoporosis
treatment. Mercedes López, PhD, led the project at the Center for Research and
Advanced Studies (Cinvestav) in Mexico.
Using animal models, the researchers induced osteoporosis in mice by
removing their ovaries. The animals were then given agave fructans (polymers
that store carbohydrates in some fruits and vegetables). After eight weeks,
were collected in order to assess the absorption of minerals and
osteocalcin (a protein that indicates new bone production).
“It was found that mice that consumed this fructans synthesized nearly 50% more
of such protein, in addition that the diameter of their bones was higher
compared with the subjects which were not supplied with derivatives of the
agave,” López explained.
Comment: It’s getting closer to Cinqo de Mayo.
Summer Squash Casserole
15 minutes ~
Cook Time: 50 minutes ~
Total Time: 65 minutes ~
Yield: 4 to 6 Servings
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
4 ounces butter
1 1/2 cups shredded
mild Cheddar cheese or Monterey Jack,
1 cup buttery
1/2 cup evaporated
2 eggs, beaten
black pepper to taste
Boil sliced squash in
water with salt and sugar until just tender. Drain well and add butter, 1 cup of
the cheese, 3/4 cup cracker crumbs, milk, eggs, and pepper. Mix well and pour
into a buttered 2-quart casserole or baking dish.
Sprinkle reserved cheese and cracker crumbs over the top of the squash
Bake for 30
to 45 minutes
COMPLETE WELLNESS VITAMINS
Wellness provides the vital nutrients
should have to enjoy a more vibrant, energetic, fun-filled
Wellness: Regular $33.90 x 3 = $101.70
$33.90 x 3 = $81.70
“I’ve been taking the
Complete Wellness vitamins that I purchase from ATC for a
I feel like I have a little more energy since I started the
I take three a day and have actually had fewer colds this past winter.
I am contributing my good health in part to
I am very satisfied with the results!” … Kathleen Marrone – Adamstown,