October 8, 2019
Mendelian randomization is a powerful technique that enables investigators to mimic randomized clinical trials by characterizing genetic differences between groups of people and studying their clinical outcomes. Brian A. Ference, MD, MPhil, from the University of Cambridge in England, is a leading expert on this topic and spoke with us about how mendelian randomization has facilitated a better understanding of lipid biology and how it relates to cardiovascular risk.
October 7, 2019
Personal protective equipment comprises gloves, gowns, masks, regular respirators, and powered air purifying respirators (PAPRs). In this Clinical Review podcast Trish Perl, MD, of UT Southwestern Medical Center reviews the indications for each and the results of the RESPECT trial, which reported no difference in incidence of laboratory-confirmed influenza among health care personnel randomized to wear N95 respiratory or medical masks. She’s interviewed by JAMA Fishbein fellow Angel Desai, MD.
October 6, 2019
JAMA Fishbein Fellow Angel Desai, MD interviews Douglas S. Krakower, MD at the IDWeek 2019 conference in Washington, D.C. Related article: Rising PrEP Awareness
October 6, 2019
This Clinical Review podcast reviews some of the most important advances in clinical infectious diseases presented at IDWeek 2019 including data on rapid testing, new antimicrobial agents, and new strategies for using existing antibiotics to manage antimicrobial resistance. JAMA Fishbein Fellow Angel Desai, MD interviews Helen Boucher, MD of Tufts University.
September 10, 2019
Since the passage of the Dickey Amendment in 1996, federal funding for gun violence research has been withheld from the CDC and other federal agencies that should be tasked with figuring out the origins and solutions to this problem. But while the US government has been locked in a political stalemate, other entities are stepping up in a new model for getting the job done.
September 3, 2019
Ed Livingston, MD, interviews Steven Nissen, MD, at the European Society of Cardiology's 2019 conference in Paris, France.
September 2, 2019
Ed Livingston, MD, interviews James Januzzi, MD, at the European Society of Cardiology's 2019 conference in Paris, France.
September 2, 2019
Ed Livingston, MD, interviews Akshay Desai, MD, at the European Society of Cardiology's 2019 conference in Paris, France.
August 20, 2019
Jennifer A. Ligibel, MD, from the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Harvard Medical School, Boston, explains how obesity influences the risk of developing cancer and how it influences the prognosis of existing cancer.
August 6, 2019
Dr. Eduardo Bruera, Chair of the Department of Palliative Care at MD Anderson, discusses how to responsibly manage cancer pain using opioids.
July 22, 2019
Menopause is inevitable for women. It symptoms are uncomfortable and distressing. For women to best cope with menopause, it is useful to firmly establish the onset so that appropriate counseling can follow. In this podcast, an expert in this field, Nanette Santoro, MD, from the University of Colorado, explains how to diagnose menopause. Read the article: Diagnosing the Onset of Menopause
July 16, 2019
Using firearms to commit suicide is one of the most common causes of firearm related deaths. This can happen even in families where it seems highly unlikely to occur. In this podcast, we tell the story of a policeman’s daughter who got a hold of his gun and tried to kill herself.
July 9, 2019
Subclinical hypothyroidism is common, but it is not clear how best to treat it. Anne R. Cappola, MD, ScM, professor of medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, explains how to manage this important clinical condition. Read the article: Subclinical Hypothyroidism: A Review  
July 2, 2019
There are now 36 states and recent federal legislation that require that clinicians inform women about breast density results from mammography. Consequently, clinicians must be aware of the clinical ramifications of dense breasts and what to do about them when found. Karla Kerlikowske, MD, from UCSF explains the risks associated with dense breasts and how to manage patients who have them. CME will be available on July 2 when the print/online issue of JAMA is published.
July 2, 2019
California enacted 3 aggressive laws between 2014 and 2016 in an effort to improve measles vaccination rates. To a large extent these laws were effective in increasing vaccination rates, but some of the improvements were offset by clinicians granting inappropriate medical exemptions for vaccinations. S. Cassandra Pingali, MPH, MS, and Saad B. Omer, MBBS, MPH, PhD, from the Department of Epidemiology at Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia, discuss measles and what happened in California when legislators tried to improve measles vaccination rates. CME will be available on July 2 when the print/online issue of JAMA is published.
June 25, 2019
A conversation with Greg Curfman, MD, JAMA Deputy Editor and a cardiologist, who reviews 2 new studies showing that a short duration of dual antiplatelet therapy may not result in more myocardial ischemic events. Read the article: Effect of 1-Month Dual Antiplatelet Therapy Followed by Clopidogrel vs 12-Month Dual Antiplatelet Therapy on Cardiovascular and Bleeding Events in Patients Receiving PCI: The STOPDAPT-2 Randomized Clinical Trial  
June 11, 2019
Over the span of less than a minute, a gunman with a history of mental health issues turned a Safeway parking lot into the scene of a mass shooting, killing 6 and wounding 13 in 20 seconds. In this inaugural episode of the In Our Lane podcast series, we hear the stories of the survivors who wrestled the gunman to the ground and treated the injured during the wait for first responders.
June 4, 2019
Andrew M. Kaunitz, MD, from the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Florida, Jacksonville, explains how to diagnose and treat various patterns of abnormal uterine bleeding. Read the article: Abnormal Uterine Bleeding in Reproductive-Age Women  
May 30, 2019
Jan L. Shifren, MD, from the department of obstetrics and gynecology, Massachusetts General Hospital, and Harvard Medical School discusses menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes and how they can be effectively treated by the administration of hormones when given appropriately. Read the article: Menopausal Hormone Therapy CME will be available on June 25 when this article appears in the print edition of JAMA.
May 28, 2019
George F. Sawaya, MD, professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of California, San Francisco, discusses cervical cancer screening in the modern era. Read the article: Cervical Cancer Screening: More Choices in 2019 Read the transcript  
May 7, 2019
Breast cancer outcomes continue to improve. Treatments for the disease are very effective and continually evolving. We spoke with Patricia A. Ganz, MD, from UCLA about what is new in breast cancer treatment. Read the article here.
May 7, 2019
Dr Carolyn Crandall, professor of medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and JAMA Associate Editor, introduces JAMA's new series of articles on women's health.
April 9, 2019
Congressman Mike Thompson chairs the US House Gun Violence Prevention Taskforce. He spoke with us about what the House has done to address gun violence and what you can do to help them see necessary legislation make it into law. We also talk with Joshua Sharfstein, MD, about strategies that can be undertaken by the physician community to reduce gun violence.
April 2, 2019
Maternal mortality rates in most of the United States are high. These rates were successfully lowered in the United Kingdom and also in California. Many of these deaths are preventable. In this podcast we interview Elizabeth A. Howell, MD, MPP, from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mt Sinai in New York, who explains the relatively simple ways to address this problem. See related article.
March 26, 2019
Almost nothing is more controversial than gun control in the United States. Yet while passions flare and legislators posture but do little, deaths from gun violence are all too common. Almost every proposal put forward to address gun violence eventually fails. Seemingly, the Second Amendment stops any attempt to control guns. Despite this, there have been commonsense approaches to reducing gun violence that have been very effective in some communities. How gun violence has been managed in these communities is reviewed in this podcast with JAMA author April M. Zeoli, PhD, MPH, from the School of Criminal Justice at Michigan State University, Lansing. Part 2 of 3.
March 15, 2019
Cardiologist and JAMA Deputy Editor Greg Curfman, MD, discusses the many changes in the new AHA/ACC/HRS atrial fibrillation guidelines with University of Chicago cardiologists Gaurav Upadhyay, MD, and Francis Alenghat, MD, PhD. Major changes include recommendations for the use of various agents for anticoagulation, catheter ablation, and left atrial appendage occlusion. Read the article: Management of Patients With Atrial Fibrillation Index of content: 2:19 Summary of the new ACC/AHA Atrial Fibrillation Guideline 8:04 Cost and efficacy of NOACs used to treat atrial fibrillation 11:42 Preference for specific NOACs 14:00 Rate vs rhythm control 20:00 How catheter ablation is performed 26:20 Anticoagulation requirements following ablation 31:23 How to achieve rate control 32:25 Left atrial appendage occlusion devices 36:29 New lifestyle recommendation 37:44 More about rate vs rhythm control  
March 12, 2019
Almost nothing is more controversial than gun control in the United States. Yet while passions flare and legislators posture but do little, deaths from gun violence are all too common. Almost every proposal put forward to address gun violence eventually fails. Seemingly, the Second Amendment stops any attempt to control guns. Despite this, there have been commonsense approaches to reducing gun violence that have been very effective in some communities. How gun violence has been managed in these communities is reviewed in this podcast with JAMA author April M. Zeoli, PhD, MPH, from the School of Criminal Justice at Michigan State University, Lansing.
February 26, 2019
COPD is common enough that it is responsible for 3% of all clinic visits in the United States. Clinicians will undoubtedly deal with this disease in their practice. How to diagnose and manage it is reviewed by Frank C. Sciurba, MD, a professor of medicine from the University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
February 14, 2019
Next-generation sequencing is a catchall term for new, high-throughput technologies that allow rapid sequencing of a full genome. It can be used to sequence a patient’s DNA in diagnosing a genetic disorder or characterizing a cancer, but can also be used to sequence the genome of a pathogenic bacteria, virus, fungi, or parasites. In this JAMA clinical review podcast, we talk with authors Marta Gwinn, MD, MPH, and Gregory L. Armstrong, MD, from the CDC, about how next-generation sequencing of infectious pathogens is being implemented in clinical practice and in public health surveillance for infectious disease.
February 12, 2019
E-values are a new tool that enables investigators to estimate the likelihood that some unmeasured confounder might overcome seemingly positive results. They are very easy to calculate and any reader of the medical literature can do this calculation to get a sense for how likely it is that there is some unmeasured factor in an observational study that might negate otherwise seemingly positive findings. Read the article: Using the E-Value to Assess the Potential Effect of Unmeasured Confounding in Observational Studies E-Value Calculator
January 29, 2019
Saved by a Fitbit. Technology is developing at a pace far exceeding its application in medical care. An exception is in consumer devices, which as long as they do not hold themselves out as diagnostic tools, can apply as many technologies to wearable devices as companies want to put into them. In this episode we discuss how a clinician used a wearable device to diagnose his father's rapid heart rates consistent with dangerous cardiac arrhythmias. Read the article: Wearable Devices for Cardiac Rhythm Diagnosis and Management  
January 22, 2019
Breast cancer screening is debated passionately among those who advocate for very aggressive screening and other experts who believe that screening can be harmful. The arguments for all sides of the debate are best understood by knowing the numbers of women who will benefit or be harmed by breast cancer screening. Both sides of the debate are explained in this podcast by Nancy Keating, MD, and Lydia Pace, MD, both from the Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston.
January 15, 2019
Very few people who think they are allergic to penicillin actually are. Yet, even if someone reports a remote and vague history of penicillin allergy, these very useful medications will not be given. This forces many patients to use antibiotics that may be too broad spectrum, not very effective, or expensive. Three major societies have come together to agree on an approach for assessing if penicillin allergy is really present when a patient reports an allergy to these medications. Erica S. Shenoy, MD, PhD, from Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, author of a JAMA review on the topic, discusses this very important problem. Read the article: Evaluation and Management of Penicillin Allergy: A Review  
December 21, 2018
When flying and they call "Is there a licensed medical professional on board," should physicians respond? If so, what should they do? Are they liable if things go wrong? We interview Christian Martin-Gill, MD, MPH, Department of Emergency Medicine, University of Pittsburgh, who is an expert on in-flight emergencies and authored a JAMA review on the topic.
December 11, 2018
The statistical concept of Bayes comes up in clinical medicine all the time. It simply means that what you know about something factors into how you analyze it. This contrasts with the commonly used statistical approach called frequentist analysis of hypothesis testing, in which it is assumed that every situation is unique and not influenced by the past. Bayesian analysis accounts for how prior information gets factored into decision making and is important to understand when applying clinical research findings to the delivery of medical care. In this interview Anna E. McGlothlin, PhD, senior statistical scientist at Berry Consultants in Austin, Texas, explains these concepts for clinicians. Read the article: Bayesian Hierarchical Models
November 20, 2018
Within the last 2 years, major guidelines have been issued from US-based and European organizations that differ in their recommendations for the diagnosis and treatment of hypertension. Experts from both sides of the Atlantic--Paul Whelton, MD, from the United States and Bryan Williams, MD, from Europe--discuss the similarities and differences in these guidelines and the basis for the differences. They were interviewed by JAMA editors Greg Curfman, MD, and Ed Livingston, MD. Part 1 [LINK] of this 2-part series, reviewed the similarities between the 2 guidelines and discussed issues regarding how to best treat hypertension in elderly individuals. In this Part 2 episode, the differences between the guidelines are reviewed and how clinicians should use this information to treat patients is presented. See also the JAMA website on hypertension guidelines at
November 13, 2018
What is it like to go through alcohol withdrawal at home? What is it like for a mother to sit by her son's side while he goes through withdrawal and supporting him? Why does someone who doesn't have any particular reason to drink misuse alcohol? The answers to these questions can be found by listening to a narrative from one patient and his mother about his descent into alcohol misuse, his experiences with withdrawal, and his eventual overcoming of a dreadful alcohol addiction. Read the article: Will This Hospitalized Patient Develop Severe Alcohol Withdrawal Syndrome?: The Rational Clinical Examination Systematic Review  
November 6, 2018
Within the last 2 years, major guidelines have been issued from US-based and European organizations that differ in their recommendations for the diagnosis and treatment of hypertension. Experts from both sides of the Atlantic—Paul Whelton, MD, from the United States (Tulane University, New Orleans, Louisiana) and Bryan Williams, MD, from Europe (University College London in England)—discuss the similarities and differences in these guidelines and the basis for the differences. They were interviewed by JAMA editors Greg Curfman, MD, and Ed Livingston, MD.
October 23, 2018
What if the patient you are managing in the ICU is not asleep when you thought they were? Patients relate their very disturbing stories about what they experienced while in an ICU and their treating clinicians thought they were asleep.
October 16, 2018
Venous thromboembolic disease is common. There are many steps necessary to establish a diagnosis or treat this disease. These are summarized in this JAMA Clinical Reviews podcast and interview with Philip S. Wells, MD, from the Department of Medicine, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, and author of a recent JAMA review on the topic.
October 2, 2018
Alcohol withdrawal is a serious problem that can lead to mortality. How to predict if it will occur when a patient who is misusing alcohol is admitted to the hospital is challenging. This Rational Clinical Examination article reports results of a systematic review of the literature to determine the best way to predict the occurrence of alcohol withdrawal. Read the article: Will This Hospitalized Patient Develop Severe Alcohol Withdrawal Syndrome?: The Rational Clinical Examination Systematic Review
September 25, 2018
In 2015, JAMA published results of a randomized clinical trial showing that antibiotic treatment for acute appendicitis was feasible. Doubters of the efficacy of antibiotics for treating appendicitis were concerned about what the long-term recurrence rate would be for those patients treated without surgery. The 5-year results of the study are now presented, showing that only about 40% of patients treated with antibiotics ultimately go on to have an appendectomy. Read the article: Five-Year Follow-up of Antibiotic Therapy for Uncomplicated Acute Appendicitis in the APPAC Randomized Clinical Trial
September 18, 2018
There are new findings about another form of Borrelia: Borrelia miyamotoi. This form of Borrelia causes a relapsing fever but is spread in the same way that Lyme disease is. To help understand these new findings we spoke with Eugene Shapiro, MD, from the Department of Pediatrics and Department of Epidemiology of Microbial Diseases at Yale.
September 11, 2018
In this JAMA Clinical Reviews podcast, we talk to Eugene D. Shapiro, MD, from Yale University School of Medicine for an update on Lyme disease, including new ideas about its diagnosis and treatment.
September 4, 2018
Syphilis is on the rise despite prior successful efforts to control it. Why is it coming back and what needs to be done about it? Dr Charles Hicks from UC San Diego explains. This podcast coincides with updated syphilis screening recommendations from the USPSTF that were published in the September 4, 2018 issue of JAMA.
August 28, 2018
Up to 7% of the entire US population has alcohol use disorder. It’s important for every clinician to understand how to approach patients to question them about their use of alcohol and to establish a diagnosis when alcohol use disorder is present. Dr Henry Kranzler, from the University of Pennsylvania, is an authority on managing alcohol use disorder and discusses its diagnosis and treatment in this JAMA clinical reviews podcast. Read the article: Diagnosis and Pharmacotherapy of Alcohol Use Disorder: A Review
August 14, 2018
Bleeding is one of the most common preventable causes of death. It is common, yet most people don't know what to do about it when they see it. The Stop the Bleed campaign is an effort to educate the public should they encounter people who are bleeding. Simple maneuvers can have a great beneficial effect. In this JAMA Clinical Reviews podcast, we hear from people with substantial experience in managing bleeding in the field and what they recommend for managing this otherwise deadly problem. Read the article: Stop the Bleeding: Educating the Public
August 1, 2018
As the AIDS crisis unfolded, each discovery seemed to lead to a new mystery. Who was at risk? Why was this disease of immune activation so hard for the body to fight? Most important, what could be done to stop it? In the conclusion of this JAMA Clinical Reviews series, we'll continue the story of the small team of CDC clinicians on the frontlines of the AIDS epidemic as they worked to stem the flow of this devastating disease.
July 24, 2018
When AIDS first appeared in the gay community in 1981, it was terrifying for patients and clinicians alike. Nobody knew exactly what was going on. But using basic epidemiologic methods, a small team of public servants at the CDC raced against the clock to unravel the mystery, doing their best to minimize the damage of this rapidly spreading disease.
July 6, 2018
Misplaced fears about IUDs have caused them to be avoided by many women, despite the fact that they are very safe and among the most effective means for contraception. In this JAMA Clinical Reviews podcast, we review long-acting reversible contraception (LARC) and how contraceptive practices were affected by the Dalkon Shield tragedy.
June 23, 2018
Health care spending in the United States is out of control. The most significant aspect of medical care driving this spending is pharmaceuticals; within pharmaceuticals the greatest increases have been in spending for diabetes medications. The cost of insulin analogs has increased 5- to 6-fold in the last 10 years for no particular reason. More than 90% of US patients who use insulin use these analogs, despite the fact that they have few if any clinical benefits relative to regular or NPH insulin, which cost 1/10 as much. Aside from the cost of insulin, diabetes is probably treated far more aggressively than necessary since clinical trials demonstrating the benefits of aggressive glucose control for type 2 diabetes demonstrated vanishingly small benefits of this form of treatment. In this podcast we discuss the perplexing case of spending too much money on diabetes treatment.
June 19, 2018
The American College of Physicians just changed its guidance for how aggressively to treat type 2 diabetes, relaxing the HbA1c goal to something below 8 rather than 6.5 or 7 as other organizations recommend. This has stirred up substantial controversy. The rationale behind this decision is presented in this podcast. Related article
June 12, 2018
For many years guidelines have recommended against obtaining ECGs for low-risk patients undergoing routine health examinations. Yet about a fifth of all patients having these exams get an ECG. Why? Are clinicians just stubborn or uninformed or are the guidelines missing something clinicians are concerned about? Read the article: The Screening ECG and Cardiac Risks  
May 20, 2018
Many attempts to replace the trachea have failed in the past. The most spectacular failure was fraudulent research done in Europe by a high-profile surgeon who was eventually charged with scientific misconduct. JAMA now reports a clinical series of successful tracheal transplants done in France. How do we know the procedures described in JAMA really worked? The answer is provided in this podcast.
May 8, 2018
The controversy continues about the efficacy of PSA screening for prostate cancer. New recommendations were just issued from the USPSTF about who should be screened for prostate cancer and when. But not everyone agrees with these recommendations. Ballentine Carter, MD, from the Department of Urology at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, discusses the new recommendations and provides an expert urologist's perspective on PSA screening for prostate cancer. Related article
March 6, 2018
Peanut allergy is common. But it is more common in countries that delay the introduction of peanuts into the diets of infants. Guidelines in the United States previously recommended delayed introduction of peanuts for infants, which resulted in an increased prevalence of peanut allergy. New recommendations now recommend early introduction of peanuts into infants’ diets to minimize the risk of developing peanut allergy. Read the article: Peanut Allergy Prevention
February 20, 2018
Acute respiratory disease syndrome is characterized by respiratory failure that occurs after someone is acutely ill, usually from a disease that does not primarily involve the lungs. Its cause, diagnosis, and treatment are reviewed in this JAMA Clinical Reviews Podcast for the February 20, 2018 issue
February 14, 2018
Douglas H. Smith, MD, of the University of Pennsylvania's Department of Neurosurgery and Center for Brain Injury and Repair, and Randel Swanson II, DO, PhD, of the University of Pennsylvania's Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation department, summarize findings from a clinical evaluation of US government personnel reporting neurologic symptoms after exposure to directional auditory and sensory phenomena during their official postings in Havana, Cuba.  
February 1, 2018
The health risks associated with participation in American football have garnered increasing attention over the past several years. Particular focus has been on concussion and the association of repeated head trauma with chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). However, other factors related to participation in professional football might be associated with better or worse health throughout life. Dr Ann McKee discusses the occurrence of CTE in a case series of deceased football players who donated their brains for research. Former National Football League (NFL) player Mike Adamle shares his story including his symptoms and suspected diagnosis of CTE. Dr Atheendar Venkataramani discusses a recent study about the association between playing in the NFL and all-cause mortality. Read the articles: Association Between American Football in the NFL and Long-term Mortality in Retirement Evaluation of Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy in American Football Players JAMA Patient Page: Sport-Related Concussion  
January 16, 2018
Why is two-thirds of the US population overweight or obese? Obesity began to increase in 1980, and its incidence is still rising. One reason for this might be that the population has become tolerant of obesity and accepted it as the normal state. On the other end of the spectrum, some people desire to lose weight but, in general, diets and medications are not very effective. The most effective way to lose weight is with bariatric surgery. A relatively new procedure, the gastric sleeve resection, has been introduced. However, most new bariatric operations fail; think of the jejunoileal bypass, vertical banded gastroplasty, and laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding procedures. Has the gastric sleeve resection been successful? A series of articles providing definitive outcomes for these procedures have been published in JAMA and their results are summarized in this podcast. Interviewees: David E. Arterburn, MD, MPH Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute, Seattle, WA Anirban Gupta, MD Washington Permanente Medical Group, Bellevue, WA Read the article: Comparing the Outcomes of Sleeve Gastrectomy
January 2, 2018
The incidence of thyroid cancer is increasing. Like so many cancers, it is being diagnosed at earlier stages because of more aggressive screening and diagnostic testing. The aggressiveness of very early stage thyroid cancer is unknown and some of these tumors may be managed by active surveillance instead of surgery. In this podcast, Dr Sally Carty, Professor of Surgery at the University of Pittsburgh, reviews how to manage thyroid cancer. Natural History and Tumor Volume Kinetics of Papillary Thyroid Cancers Patient-Guided Decision Making in Papillary Thyroid Cancer Active Surveillance for Thyroid Cancer
December 19, 2017
Sinusitis is one of the most common conditions seen by clinicians. Despite its frequency, it is often misdiagnosed. In this podcast, we review the proper way to establish a diagnosis and treat both acute and chronic sinusitis. Related article
December 12, 2017
In November 2017, new guidelines were issued for hypertension treatment. They are a comprehensive overhaul of recommendations for both the diagnosis and treatment of hypertension. Last week, we discussed the guidelines' specific recommendations with Dr Paul Whelton, professor of medicine at Tulane University, who chaired the guidelines-writing committee. We also spoke to Dr Phil Greenland from Northwestern University, who is one of the cardiology editors for JAMA. This week, in part 2 of this podcast, we discuss the controversies associated with the new hypertension guidelines. Related articles: The 2017 Clinical Practice Guideline for High Blood Pressure Prevention, Detection, Evaluation, and Management of High Blood Pressure in Adults The New 2017 ACC/AHA Guidelines “Up the Pressure” on Diagnosis and Treatment of Hypertension
December 5, 2017
In November 2017, new guidelines were issued for hypertension treatment. The new guideline is a comprehensive overhaul of recommendations for both the diagnosis and treatment of hypertension. Based on years of work by dozens of individuals who generated 106 recommendations, the guideline is complicated. Dr Paul Whelton, an author of the guideline, and Dr Phil Greenland, Professor of Medicine at Northwestern University and one of our cardiology editors here at JAMA, explain the major recommendations presented in the new hypertension guidelines. Related articles: The 2017 Clinical Practice Guideline for High Blood Pressure Prevention, Detection, Evaluation, and Management of High Blood Pressure in Adults The New 2017 ACC/AHA Guidelines “Up the Pressure” on Diagnosis and Treatment of Hypertension
November 21, 2017
The best evidence for proving cause-and-effect comes from randomized clinical trials. However, they are expensive and difficult to perform. The natural assortment of gene variants at birth can mimic randomization in some circumstances and yield important clinical information that can help physicians better care for their patients. Read the article: Mendelian Randomization  
November 14, 2017
Bacteriophages are viruses that infect and kill bacteria. When they were first discovered in the early part of the 20th century, there was great enthusiasm for their potential use to treat all sorts of bacterial infections. They were supplanted by antibiotics and although they remained critically important in research that led to the understanding of DNA and how it works, bacteriophages never really made it in the therapeutic world. Now that multiple-drug-resistant bacteria are becoming increasingly common, there is renewed interest in using bacteriophages to treat bacterial infection. Links: YouTube video summarizing the career and science of Félix d'Hérelle-one of the discoverers of bacteriophages Dr. Felix d'Herelle Canadian Medical Hall of Fame Laureate 2007 Detailed history of the development of bacteriophage research in Georgia A Stalinist Antibiotic Alternative from New York Times Magazine, February 6, 2000 Reprint of Twort’s initial description of a substance killing bacteria discovered while trying to grow viruses. Although Twort did not identify bacteriophages in his experiment, he believed there was some toxic entity that killed bacteria present in his experiments. An investigation on the nature of ultra-microscopic viruses1 by Twort FW, L.R.C.P. Lond., M.R.C.S. Reprint and translation of d’Herelle’s original 1917 description of bacteriophages isolated from soldiers recovering from dysentery. On an invisible microbe antagonistic to dysentery bacilli. Note by M. F. d’Herelle, presented by M. Roux. Comptes Rendus Academie des Sciences 1917; 165:373–5 Review of the non-English-language literature on bacteriophage therapy of infection Bacteriophage Therapy Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2001 Mar; 45(3): 649–659. Review of the history bacteriophage research and its effect on scientific development and clinical medicine The Murky Origin of Snow White and Her T-Even Dwarfs Genetics 155: 481–486 (June 2000) News report from UC San Diego on treatment of the patient described in the podcast Novel Phage Therapy Saves Patient with Multidrug-Resistant Bacterial Infection 2017 JAMA Medical News article on the use of bacteriophage to treat a patient with multidrug-resistant Acinetobacter infection Phage Therapy’s Role in Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Pathogens
October 24, 2017
Urinary incontinence in women is common but not often discussed. Linda Brubaker, MD, and Emily S. Lukacz, MD, review the evaluation and management of incontinence in women, including how to broach the topic with patients and when to use treatments ranging from behavioral interventions and pelvic floor muscle exercises to vaginal devices, medications, and office-based procedures or surgery.
October 17, 2017
An increasing number of transgender patients are being seen in all care settings. Their medical needs are not too different from those for any primary care patient. New guidelines issued by the Endocrine Society in September 2017 are summarized in this podcast.
October 3, 2017
Powerful new genetic technologies enable clinicians to detect and sequence tiny amounts of free DNA circulating in blood. DNA gets into blood when cells fall apart. Abnormal DNA from diseased cells can be detected, enabling clinicians to detect cancer or monitor tumor growth by liquid biopsy. In this JAMA Clinical Reviews podcast, we talked with Victor E. Velculescu, MD, PhD, from the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, and JAMA medical writer M.J. Friedrich about this new technology. Related articles: Cancer DNA in the Circulation: The Liquid Biopsy Going With the Flow: The Promise and Challenge of Liquid Biopsies Finding the Rare Pathogenic Variants in a Human Genome  
September 26, 2017
Delirium goes unrecognized in approximately 60% of cases. When it is recognized, it can be difficult to treat. Recognizing and treating, as well as preventing, delirium is important because delirium is associated with poor health outcomes and significant health care costs. Esther S. Oh, MD, PhD, Tammy T. Hshieh, MD, MPH, and Sharon K. Inouye, MD, MPH, discuss their review article about advances in diagnosis and treatment of delirium, and Dr Maria Duggan provides additional insights about diagnosis and management from her perspective as a clinician and researcher. Related article: Delirium in Older Persons: Advances in Diagnosis and Treatment
September 12, 2017
Every successive major clinical trial of less invasive breast cancer surgery seems to show that less is more--less because less surgery seems to not influence outcomes and more because with less surgery, there are fewer complications, resulting in a net benefit for women with breast cancer.
September 5, 2017
Clinicians can now sample DNA from in vitro blastocysts to identify embryos with genetic abnormalities and avoid implanting them. This genetic screening allows couples who carry dangerous genetic diseases to avoid having children with those diseases. Interviewees: Siobhan M. Dolan, MD, Tamar H. Goldwaser, MD, and Sangita K. Jindal, PhD Links discussed in this episode: Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis for Mendelian Conditions  
August 15, 2017
Some drugs and devices receive accelerated approval from the FDA in order to provide potentially important treatments for patients when effective therapies may not be available. These drugs or devices are supposed to have postmarketing studies to definitively show their efficacy or safety, but sometimes this doesn't happen. Rita F. Redberg, MD, MSc, Aaron S. Kesselheim, MD, JD, MPH, and Robert M. Califf, MD, discuss their articles characterizing studies used for the approval of high-risk medical devices and accelerated approval of drugs by the FDA. Discussed in this podcast: FDA Online
July 25, 2017
Scott Grundy, MD, PhD, is a professor of medicine at UT Southwestern in Dallas and is one of a small group of investigators who saved statins from being dumped as a potential drug class. Dr Grundy tells the story of how studying patients with familial hypercholesterolemia unraveled the mysteries of high cholesterol levels. This resulted in the development of very effective drugs to treat any patient with high cholesterol. Familial hypercholesterolemia is fairly common and when patients have very high cholesterol levels they and their families should undergo cascade screening. Interviewees: Scott M. Grundy, MD, PhD, and author Joshua W. Knowles, MD, PhD Links discussed in this episode: Cascade Screening for Familial Hypercholesterolemia and the Use of Genetic Testing Dietary Guidelines for Americans Interview with Karen DeSalvo, MD, MPH, MSc, author of Dietary Guidelines for Americans
July 18, 2017
Asthma often develops in childhood but also affects a significant number of adults. It can present in various ways and with varying degrees of severity. William J. Calhoun, MD, of the University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, discusses the approach to diagnosis and provides tips for management of this common condition.
July 11, 2017
Following placement of cardiac stents, patients receive dual antiplatelet therapy (DAPT) to prevent stent thrombosis. Prevention of thrombosis is offset by a risk of bleeding. The optimal balance between thrombosis prevention and bleeding risk is not always known. How to go about optimizing DAPT therapy is discussed by Glen Levine, MD, professor of medicine at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas, and chair of the combined American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association Guideline Committees.
July 3, 2017
Allergy to penicillin is one of the most commonly reported allergies by patients. In reality, true penicillin allergy is uncommon. Dr. Elizabeth Phillips from Vanderbilt University discusses her experience with testing for penicillin allergy in patients who thought they had this problem.
June 27, 2017
Chromosomal microarray technology (CMA) facilitates the genetic diagnosis of intellectual disabilities, autism spectrum disorder, and congenital abnormalities in children. Previously, G-band karyotyping was the test performed for this purpose but it could only identify very large chromosomal abnormalities and was not very sensitive. Being a molecular rather than microscopic technique, CMA is far more sensitive for identifying genetic abnormalities and is now the test of choice. We interview David H. Ledbetter, MD, and Christa Lese Martin, PhD, from Geisinger Health System, authors of this JAMA Insights article. Articles discussed in this episode: Chromosomal Microarray Testing for Children With Unexplained Neurodevelopmental Disorders New Approaches to Molecular Diagnosis
May 23, 2017
Depression is very common in old age. Because it is associated with many issues related to aging such as having diabetes, hypertension, and other diseases and also the general ability to do less than when a person was younger, it is often assumed that depression is just part of the aging process. Inadequate treatment is often given for depression, frustrating patients and clinicians. However, aggressive depression treatment in elderly individuals can be very successful and greatly improve an older person’s quality of life. PHQ-9 USPSTF recs JAMA Patient Page on Screening for Depression
May 9, 2017
Whole-genome sequencing is now easily done for very little cost. It is not known how to interpret the results of this testing. It is inadvisable for healthy individuals to undergo routine whole-genome sequencing but if someone has a reason to suspect a particular disease known to be associated with a unique gene, then targeted genetic sequencing is reasonable. Interviewee: James P. Evans, MD, PhD, from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
April 3, 2017
Much has changed recently in diabetes management. The treatment goal has shifted from rigorous glucose control with HbA1c as the primary target to cardiovascular risk reduction. Risk reduction can be achieved in a variety of ways and does not necessarily depend on expensive new drugs that were shown to achieve this end point. Older, cheaper drugs may achieve the same goal but were never tested in this context. Interview with JoAnn E. Manson, MD, PhD, from Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston and Jane Reusch, MD, from University of Colorado, Denver. Article: Reusch JEB, Manson JE. Management of type 2 diabetes in 2017: getting to goal. JAMA. 2017;317(10):1015-1016. doi:10.1001/jama.2017.0241
March 28, 2017
A resident is asked to remove a drain that was placed in the lumbar space during an operation. Having never seen this sort of drain before not having removed one, the resident proceeded to remove the catheter. Several days later, the patient complained of persistent drainage. An 11-cm segment of retained catheter was removed. This JAMA Performance Improvement article discusses how to avoid this sort of problem as well as how to ensure that resident physicians have sufficient skills to perform procedures on their own. We talk with Drs Cynthia Barnhard, John DeLancey, authors of Retained Lumbar Catheter Tip, and Dr Aaron Reynolds and Dr David Baker. Related article: Retained Lumbar Catheter Tip  
March 20, 2017
Alzheimer disease causes progressive neurologic deterioration and is reasonably common in elderly patients. It is characterized by specific patterns of memory loss, which progressively worsens and for which there is no treatment. Recent drug trials have been disappointing in that promising medications have failed to affect the disease. Interesting new hypotheses have emerged from basic science research suggesting that the neurofibrillary tangles characteristic of Alzheimer brain lesions form in response to infection of the brain. Interview with Rudolph Tanzi, PhD, of Harvard University; Berislav Zlokovic, MD, PhD, of the University of Southern California; and Andy Josephson, MD, of the University of California San Francisco, and editor of JAMA Neurology. Related article: Alzheimer Outlook Far From Bleak
March 7, 2017
Recent guidelines for how to best manage septic shock have changed. Gone are recommendations for central venous oxygen saturation monitoring and goal-directed therapy. In is the concept that septic shock be treated as an emergency with rapid administration of antibiotics and large amounts of fluids. Our discussants Derek C. Angus, MD, MPH, and Michael D. Howell, MD, MPH, discuss why these recommendations have changed. This is the second podcast in the Surviving Sepsis guideline series. The first podcast reviewed what recommendations are in the guideline itself. Article discussed in this episode: Management of Sepsis and Septic Shock Speakers: JAMA Associate Editor Derek C. Angus, MD, MPH, University of Pittsburgh, and Michael D. Howell, MD, MPH, University of Chicago.
February 28, 2017
In 2017 the Society for Critical Care Medicine updated its guidelines for sepsis management. These new guidelines differ significantly from ones in the past in that they no longer recommend protocolized resuscitation and emphasize early and aggressive fluid resuscitation when patients present with septic shock. This is the first podcast in the Surviving Sepsis guideline series. The next episode discusses why the new sepsis guideline changed. Article discussed in this episode: Management of Sepsis and Septic Shock Speakers: Laura Evans, MD, MSc, of Bellevue Hospital and NYU Medical Center Andrew Rhodes, MBBS, MD, of St George’s University Hospitals NHS Trust and co-chair of the Surviving Sepsis guideline panel Mitchell M. Levy, MD, of the Alpert Medical School of Brown University and Rhode Island Hospital    
February 16, 2017
Approximately one-third of all medical school graduates report having been abused as students. Medical student and resident abuse has long been considered unacceptable behavior but still persists in the teaching environment. In this podcast we discuss how students and residents might respond to these events. We interview Geoffrey Young, MD, from the Association of American Medical Colleges and Thomas J. Nasca, MD, from the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, who discuss how they expect medical schools to respond to abusive behaviors and what resources are available to students and residents who have been abused to report those experiences without fearing retribution. Article discussed in this episode: Medical Student Mistreatment  
February 9, 2017
As people age, loss of muscle mass is inevitable, resulting in sarcopenia. Muscle loss contributes to overall weakness, which causes frailty. Frailty, in turn, is the generalized susceptibility to disease and injury, all of which causes loss of autonomy. Because of the potential for progressive decline in physical function in very elderly patients, accurate tools are needed to predict mortality risk to individualize treatments intended to improve longevity such as chemotherapy, management of chronic diseases, and surgery. In this podcast, sarcopenia, frailty, and risk prediction are discussed in the context of major trials studying them being conducted in Europe.
February 2, 2017
Managing hypertension in elderly patients is complicated. Recent studies have shown that elderly patients may benefit from aggressive hypertension management, but other studies have shown that some are harmed by overly aggressive hypertension management. These issues were discussed in detail at the 2016 European Union Geriatric Medicine Society meeting. In this podcast we discuss how to best manage hypertension in elderly patients with Athanase Benetos, MD, PhD, a professor of internal medicine from Nancy, France, and the academic director of the European Union Geriatric Medicine Society. Older patients tend to have multiple comorbid conditions requiring treatment with many medications. Managing polypharmacy is challenging. In this podcast we discuss 2 tools that help deal with this problem: The Beer’s list and the START/STOPP criteria. To help understand these tools we spoke with Michael Steinman, MD, a professor of medicine from University of California-San Francisco, and Denis O’Mahony from University College Cork, Ireland. Links: JAMA reviews on polypharmacy in the elderly: Evaluation and Treatment of Older Patients With Hypercholesterolemia (Sep 17, 2014) Polypharmacy in the Aging Patient: Management of Hypertension (July 14, 2015) Polypharmacy in the Aging Patient: Review of Glycemic Control in Older Adults With Type 2 Diabetes (DM article has polypharmacy podcast - Mar 8, 2016 SPRINT Trial of Hypertension Control in the Elderly: American Geriatrics Society Updated Beers Criteria for Potentially Inappropriate Medication Use in Older Adults or, click on the link for Clinical Guidelines & Recommendations– The EU(7)-PIM list: Potentially Inappropriate Medications for Older People STOPP/START Criteria for Potentially Inappropriate Prescribing in Older People
January 30, 2017
Workplace violence–related injuries occur disproportionately in health care settings. In this podcast, we discuss how individual clinicians should manage violent patients who might attack them. Article discussed in this episode: Ensuring Staff Safety When Treating Potentially Violent Patients
December 27, 2016
Between 8% and 10% of the population will have a seizure at one point in life. It's important to distinguish seizures from other entities that can look like them and, once a diagnosis of a seizure is established, know how to treat them. In this podcast we discuss seizures and epilepsy with Jay Gavvala, MD, author of New-Onset Seizure in Adults and Adolescents: A Review. Article discussed in this episode: New-Onset Seizure in Adults and Adolescents: A Review  
November 1, 2016
Medicare recently developed a star rating system to help consumers determine the quality of care delivered at various hospitals. This rating system was considered controversial by many. In this podcast we discuss the rating system with one of its critics, Karl Y. Bilimoria, MD, MS, and with Kate Goodrich, MD, the Director of the Center for Clinical Standards and Quality at Medicare. Article discussed in this episode: The New CMS Hospital Quality Star Ratings: The Stars Are Not Aligned  
October 4, 2016
Nearly all women experience some element of nausea and vomiting during their pregnancies. In this podcast we review the entire spectrum of disease all the way up to hyperemesis gravidarum and how to provide care for women experiencing these problems. Article discussed in this episode: Treatments for Hyperemesis Gravidarum and Nausea and Vomiting in Pregnancy
September 27, 2016
When managing septic shock, passive leg raising is the best test to determine if a patient is likely to respond to a fluid bolus, better than CVP lines or even bedside ultrasound. Dr Najib Ayas, Associate professor of Critical Care Medicine at the University of British Columbia, discusses shock management from the context of his Rational Clinical examination article in the September 27, 2016 issue of JAMA, entitled “Will This Hemodynamically Unstable Patient Respond to a Bolus of Intravenous Fluids?”  
August 26, 2016
Drug prices continue to rise in the US. Many solutions have been proposed but few have been implemented. Drs. Janet Woodcock from the FDA and Aaron Kesselheim, author of The High Cost of Prescription Drugs in the United States from the Harvard Medical School discuss the role of brand name drugs and generics and how they influence the cost of pharmaceuticals. Also see The Cost of US Pharmaceutical Price Reductions: A Financial Simulation Model of R&D Decisions by Thomas A. Abbott and John A. Vernon.  
August 11, 2016
Edward H. Livingston, MD, discusses the British Columbia Ministry of Health’s 2015 guidelines on clinical management of opioid use disorder in adults with Keith Ahamad, MD,  Evan Wood, MD, PhD, ABIM, FRCPC, Tony L. Yaksh, PhD, and Humayun J. Chaudhry, DO, MS, MACP, FACOI. Articles and resources discussed in this episode:  Opioid Use and Addiction Microsite Clinical Management of Opioid Use Disorder (JAMA Clinical Guidelines Synopsis) The Vancouver Opioid Use Disorder Guideline Model Policy on DATA 2000 And Treatment of Opioid Addiction in the Medical Office
July 19, 2016
Richard N. Rosenthal, MD discusses a randomized clinical trial demonstrating the efficacy of an implantable buprenorphine-releasing device for treating opioid use disorder.
July 12, 2016
Lyme disease is very common in certain regions of the country and is caused by the spirochete Borrelia bergdorferi. Lyme disease is transmitted by tick bites and in this podcast we review the discovery of Lyme disease, its major clinical features, and how to diagnose and treat it, as told by Dr Alan Steere, Dr Lyndon Hu, and Dr Paul Auerwerter. Related article:
June 28, 2016
Persistent diarrhea is a poorly recognized syndrome in all populations that requires proper assessment and diagnosis to ensure that affected individuals receive the treatment needed to experience improvement of clinical symptoms. Listen to Drs Herbert DuPont and Annie Feagins discuss how to diagnose and treat diarrhea. Related article:
June 14, 2016
Dr Allen Steere discovered Lyme disease and discusses what he saw and did when confronted early in his career with a previously undescribed disease. Late stage disease, a form not commonly seen today, is discussed in detail since that is how the disease presented before its cause was determined. Related article: Review of Lyme Disease, Human Granulocytic Anaplasmosis, and Babesiosis
May 17, 2016
Drs Stuart Spechler and Peter Kahrilis discuss GERD and esophagitis--how they occur and how they are treated. Dr Spechler also discusses a new hypothesis regarding how reflux esophagitis is caused that differs from the traditional teaching that acid and pepsin reflux into the esophagus and burn the mucosa layers. Related articles: Association of Acute Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease With Esophageal Histologic Changes Turning the Pathogenesis of Acute Peptic Esophagitis Inside Out
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