December 21, 2012

Mayo Clinic in the News Weekly Highlights

By Karl Oestreich



December 21, 2012

Mayo Clinic in the News is a weekly highlights summary of major media coverage. This week's report covers two weeks of highlights because we were unable to publish last week due to technical difficulties. This will be the last news summary of 2012. Our first report of 2013 will be published January 4. Enjoy the holiday season!

If you would like to be added to the weekly distribution list, send a note to Emily Blahnik with this subject line: SUBSCRIBE to Mayo Clinic in the News.

Thank you.

Karl Oestreich, manager enterprise media relations

The New York Times
Where Have All the Primary Care Doctors Gone?

More and more, my family and friends are asking for my help in finding a primary care doctor. That they would be having trouble finding one doesn’t surprise me. We’ve all been reading warnings about an impending doctor shortage for several years now. . . The environment is such that even the primary care track training programs don’t have a fighting chance,” said lead author Dr. Colin P. West, an associate professor of medicine at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., and associate program director of the internal medicine residency training program.

Circulation: The New York Times has the third highest circulation nationally, behind USA Today (2nd) and The Wall Street Journal (1st) with 1,150,589 weekday copies circulated and 1,645,152 circulated on Sundays.

Previous Coverage

Context: This study appeared in the Dec. 5 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association. Colin West., M.D., Ph.D., the lead author, is a General Internal Medicine physician at Mayo Clinic. His research focuses primarily on physician well-being, evidence-based medicine and biostatistics, and medical education.

News Release

Public Affairs Contact: Alyson Fleming

Wall Street Journal
Why That Banana or Onion Might Feel Like Three Martinis
by Sumathi Reddy

Woke up with a hangover? It isn't just heavy alcohol consumption that can bring on a massive headache the next day; some researchers say a range of unexpected foods, from cheese to pickles to citrus fruit, can do the same…David Dodick, a neurology professor at the Mayo Clinic and chairman of the American Migraine Foundation, cited a randomized, controlled study published in 2010 that tested 30 migraine patients on diets that either included or excluded foods associated with high levels of antibodies for each person. After six weeks, the diets were reversed. The study, published in Cephalalgia, the journal of the International Headache Society which Dr. Dodick edits, found that participants had significantly fewer migraines when they avoided certain foods. Food isn't the primary cause of migraines, but it can induce or aggravate attacks, the study said.

Circulation: The Wall Street Journal, a US-based newspaper published by Dow Jones & Company, is tops in newspaper circulation in America with an average circulation of 2 million copies on weekdays.

Related Coverage:
Sports Illustrated
Helmets alone won't save football from concussions
by Jeremy Repanich

Many of us don't want football to change. We want the game to remain the hard-hitting spectacle that has caused it to grow into America's most popular sport. However, in the face of the concussion crisis, change is needed to make the game safer...which leaves us with an uncomfortable question -- can we not rely on helmets? The chief medical officer for USA Hockey doesn't know if we can. "There is no scientific evidence to prove that the hockey helmet reduces the risk of concussion," the Mayo Clinic's Dr. Michael Stuart, Vice-Chair of Orthopedic Surgery and the co-director of its Sports Medicine Center told SI's Stu Hackel earlier this year. "Now maybe it does, but we don't have sound scientific evidence."

Context: David Dodick, M.D., is a neurologist at Mayo Clinic in Arizona who is frequently sought out for his expertise related to testing of novel compounds for the acute and preventive treatment of migraine and cluster headaches. Michael Stuart, M.D., with an appointment in orthopedic surgery at Mayo Clinic, is a sports medicine expert. He serves as Chief Medical Officer for USA Hockey, a consultant to the National Hockey League Players Association and is a member of the education committee of the International Ice Hockey Association. Dr. Stuart is routinely sought out by reporters for his expertise.

Related News Release: Mayo Clinic, USA Hockey to Youth Hockey Players: 'Heads Up, Don't Duck'

Public Affairs Contacts: Jim McVeigh, Traci Klein, Bryan Anderson

NFL reports remain inconsistent

Three years after Congress pressured the NFL to overhaul its concussion program, the league effort remains marked by inconsistencies in how it tracks, manages and even describes serious head injuries, making it difficult to assess the league's progress on the issue, an analysis by ESPN's "Outside the Lines" and PBS "Frontline" shows . . . "I'm gonna be blunt here: We're so primitive," said Dr. David Dodick, a neurologist who examines some NFL players as director of the concussion program at the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Ariz. "Twenty years from now, we'll look back at ourselves and laugh."

Reach: The weekly ESPN Outside the Lines explores the most significant sports story of the week . It is an investigative sports-news program. ESPN's website has more than 40 million unique visitors each month.

Context: In response to the growing awareness of the dangers of concussions to athletes at all levels, Mayo Clinic provides concussion testing for athletes at Mayo locations in Arizona and Minnesota.

Public Affairs Contact: Jim McVeigh

Knee replacement linked to weight gain: study

by Kerry Grens

Being overweight is known to increase the risk of needing a knee replacement, but a new study finds that knee replacement surgery may also raise a person's risk of gaining weight, according to a U.S. study… "Patients who undergo knee arthroplasty are at increased risk of clinically important weight gain following surgery," wrote study leader Daniel Riddle, a professor at Virginia Commonwealth University… Riddle's group used a patient registry from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, which collected information on 917 knee replacement patients before and after their procedures.

Circulation: Thomson Reuters is the world’s largest international multimedia news agency, providing investing news, world news, business news, technology news, headline news, small business news, news alerts, personal finance, stock market, and mutual funds information available on, video, mobile, and interactive television platforms.

Context: Registries are important for examining the effectiveness of orthopedic implants that have limited pre-market performance information. Mayo Clinic's extensive total joint registry resources are being well leveraged to collect patient-reported outcome data. Mayo uses the data at the point of care to help understand the level of disability caused by the patient's condition and to monitor responses to treatment objectively. The data can also be used to assess the value — including cost-effectiveness — of various interventions in populations of patients.

Public Affairs Contact: Sharon Theimer

Chest compression-only CPR shows long-term benefit
by Katherine Hobson, People who suffer cardiac arrest - in which the heart stops beating - were less likely to die in subsequent years when bystanders performed cardiopulmonary resuscitation using chest compressions only, a new study found. That builds on previous research that found no short-term survival differences in adult victims given compression-only CPR instead of the standard kind, which includes mouth-to-mouth resuscitation…This study shows "we were on the right track in 2008," said Dr. Roger White of the Mayo Clinic, who was on the advisory group that wrote the AHA's statement.

Circulation: See entry immediately above.

Context: Roger White, M.D., is a Mayo Clinic anesthesiologist who has saved countless lives through groundbreaking work in cardiac resuscitation at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. His discoveries helped pave the way for the placement of defibrillators in airports and other public places, better CPR practices and education, and faster emergency response times. Mayo Clinic made headlines when Dr. White directed a helicopter flight crew that successfully performed CPR on a man with no pulse for 96 minutes. The patient, 54-year-old Howard Snitzer, recovered completely.

Public Affairs Contact: Sharon Theimer

KMSP FOX News Twin Cities
Whooping Cough Outbreak

Minnesota is experiencing a major outbreak of whooping cough this year. Hennepin County alone has 1,033 cases of whooping cough making it the most affected county in the entire state of Minnesota. Joining us now from the Mayo Clinic, Dr. Gregory Poland, infectious disease expert and adviser to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Reach: Minneapolis-St.Paul is the 16th largest television market in the United States with 1.7 million TV homes.  FOX 9 News (WFTC) typically has good viewership for its 9 p.m. newscast, but lags behind its competitors at 5, 6 and 10 p.m.

Context: Whooping cough, or pertussis, is making headlines, nearly all of them bad news. At least 18 children have died in recent months in what the U.S. government calls the highest infection rate in 70 years. And the problem is global, with similarly increasing rates reported overseas. While preventing the disease is in part up to medical experts, everyone can take some basic steps, such as getting vaccinated and staying home when ill, says Gregory Poland, M.D., Mayo Clinic General Internal Medicine and an infectious diseases expert and advisor to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Media Expert Alert

Public Affairs Contact: Bob Nellis

Mayo Clinic prepares for health care evolution
by Jeff Hansel

Facing health-care reform changes, a slow economy and other challenges, Mayo Clinic is slowing its hiring pace even as it remains committed to long-term expansion plans. "We're making changes internally to be financially responsible," said Mayo CEO John Noseworthy in a Thursday interview with the Post-Bulletin. "With the downturn in the economy, we have to be certain that we are working on adequately resourcing the highest priorities of the organization." It's not a hiring freeze; rather, the clinic is reviewing every job opening and project and is continuing to hire, Mayo Chief Administrative Officer Shirley Weis said.

Change is coming to health care, Mayo Clinic
by Jeff Hansel

Mayo Clinic plans to slow capital investment and construction in the near-term as it deals with the slow economy and the rapidly changing health care industry. "We are literally going through a process of reviewing all" projects planned or under way, Mayo CEO Dr. John Noseworthy said during an interview Thursday with the Post-Bulletin. If a hole already has been dug, such as for the proton-beam treatment center in Rochester, it will proceed, Mayo officials said during the session with top leadership. They also emphasized that there's no hiring freeze at the clinic, but that every new job opening is being reviewed.

Circulation: The Post-Bulletin has a weekend readership of nearly 45,000 people and daily readership of more than 41,000 people. The newspaper serves Rochester, Minn., and southeast Minnesota.

Context: John Noseworthy, M.D., Mayo Clinic President and CEO; Mike Harper, M.D., Executive Dean for Practice; Patricia Simmons, M.D., Chair, Government Relations Committee and Shirley Weis, Chief Administrative Officer met with Post-Bulletin editors and reporters to highlight Mayo Clinic’s recognition of industry-wide challenges and Mayo's long-term strategy to sustain our mission and thrive in the future.

Public Affairs Contacts: Karl Oestreich, Chris Gade

Fecal transplant offers rare hope against deadly colon disease
by Lorna Benson

In an experimental treatment that may be the only way they can save some people who have contracted a dangerous colon infection, out of desperation some Minnesota doctors are transplanting donated human feces into their patients' colons… In the endoscopy suite, Dr. Mark Larson, the Mayo Clinic gastroenterologist who performed her fecal transplant, snaked a four-foot tube and flexible scope through Hanninen's large intestine. When he reached the end of her colon, he began filling his tube with a brown solution of saline mixed with filtered feces. "And there we go," Larson said. "Science at the cutting edge, right there."… Mayo Clinic's fecal transplant program in Rochester is in the very early stages. Dr. Sahil Khanna, a gastroenterology fellow at Mayo who leads the program, has arranged about a dozen transplants in the past few months.

Reach: Minnesota Public Radio operates 43 stations and serves virtually all of Minnesota and parts of the surrounding states. MPR has more than 100,000 members and more than 900,000 listeners each week, which is the largest audience of any regional public radio network.

Context: Fecal transplants are quick,  inexpensive and offer a 90 percent cure rate for patients. About one-fourth of people with C. difficile get sick again, either because the initial infection never went away or because they're reinfected with a different strain of the bacteria. Treatment for recurrent disease may include antibiotics, which may involve one or more courses of a medication, a longer course of treatment or an antibiotic given once every two days; probiotics, such as S. boulardii, given along with the antibiotic medication or a "stool transplant" to restore healthy intestinal bacteria by placing donor stool in your colon, using a colonoscope or nasogastric tube. Although this is rarely done in practice, research has shown stool transplant to be helpful.

Treatments and drugs

News Release:  C. Diff Infections Becoming More Common, Severe

Public Affairs Contact: Brian Kilen

Rochester Epidemiology Project

After almost fifty years the Mayo Clinic is grateful for the support of the community that helps them operate the Rochester Epidemiology Project. The one of a kind project creates a medical records pool that allows scientists to study an entire population. Records from more than 150,000 patients in Olmsted County make up the pool. Researchers have used the records to make findings concerning skin cancer, dementia, and exposures to anesthesia. The hope is to add records from seven more southeastern Minnesota counties to the mix."When the population gets bigger like a half a million then you can look at specific groups and you never know the more people the more numbers the better the study," Mayo Dr. Walter Rocca said.

Reach: KAAL is owned by Hubbard Broadcasting Inc., which owns all ABC Affiliates in Minnesota including KSTP in Minneapolis-St. Paul and WDIO in Duluth. KAAL, which operates from Austin, also has ABC satellite stations in Alexandria and Redwood Falls. KAAL serves Southeast Minnesota and Northeast Iowa.

Context: It's the medical resource behind discoveries that have affected patients around the globe, treasured by researchers and funded by the National Institutes of Health for nearly 50 years: the Rochester Epidemiology Project. This comprehensive medical records pool makes Olmsted County, Minn., one of the few places in the world where scientists can study virtually an entire geographic population to identify trends in disease, evaluate treatments and find factors that put people at risk for illness — or protect them. And, as it nears the half-century mark, the project is still growing. Health care providers in seven southeastern Minnesota counties are adding patients' records, including Dodge, Fillmore, Goodhue, Houston, Mower, Wabasha and Winona, more than doubling the number of area residents included.

News Release: The Greatest Medical Resource You've Never Heard Of: Rochester Epidemiology Project

Public Affairs Contact: Sharon Theimer

Phoenix Business Journal
Phoenix looks to hospitals to improve Mexico ties
by Mike Sunnucks

The city of Phoenix is enlisting the help of Mayo Clinic Arizona and other local hospitals and medical research groups to bolster its push for more international economic development and investments, especially from Mexico.

Reach: The Phoenix Business Journal is one of 61 newspapers published by American City Business Journals.

Context: Wyatt Decker, M.D., Mayo Clinic Vice President and Chief Executive Office at Mayo Clinic in Arizona, said the clinic already receives a steady stream of patients from Mexico, but it is interested in working with city officials to build an international destination that would attract not only patients, but scientists and doctors as well. Mayo is eyeing an estimated 1,200 acres of undeveloped land surround the hospital campus. The city and Arizona State Land Department, which controls parcels in that area, are examining ways to develop a bioscience corridor near Mayo. Arizona State University also is considering developing a presence there, Decker said.

Public Affairs Contact: Jim McVeigh

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Tags: AHA, american heart association, C. diff, Cardiology, chest compression-only CPR, chest compressions, cluster headache, concussion, concussion testing, CPR, doctor shortage, Dr. Colin West, Dr. David Dodick, Dr. John Noseworthy, Dr. Michael Stuart, Dr. Mike Harper, Dr. Patty Simmons, Dr. Roger White, Dr. Walter Rocca, Dr. Wyatt Decker, economic development, ESPN, ESPN Outside the Lines, fecal transplants, General Internal Medicine, GI, Howard Snitzer, Infectious Diseases, Journal of the American Medical Association. JAMA, KAAL, knee replacement, Mayo Clinic, Mayo Clinic in Arizona, Mayo Clinic in the News, Mayo Clinic Joint Registry, Mexico, migraine headache, Minnesota Public Radio, mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, MPR, National Hockey League, National institutes of Health, Neurology, Neurology, NHL, NIH, Orthopedics, Orthopedics, Phoenix, Phoenix Business Journal, probiotics, Reuters, Rochester Epidemiology Project, S. boulardii, Shirley Weis, Sports Illustrated, Sports Medicine, Sports Medicine, stool transplant, The New York Times, Thomson Reuters, Twin Cities, USA Hockey, Virginia Commonwealth University, weight gain

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