Hepatitis C Around the World

The global burden of the hepatitis C virus (HCV) is distressing. “[A]n estimated 130–170 million persons (2%–3% of the world’s population) are living with hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection [1]. This infection, particularly in its chronic form, is associated with sizable morbidity and mortality. More than 350 000 deaths are attributed to HCV infection each…

Hospice Care and Lung Cancer Survival

Metastatic non–small-cell lung cancer, the leading cause of death from cancer worldwide, is a debilitating disease that results in a high burden of symptoms and poor quality of life; the estimated prognosis after the diagnosis has been established is less than 1 year. Due to the high mortality rates of metastatic non-small-cell lung cancer, palliative…

How Effective is Arthroscopic Knee Surgery?

For patients with osteoarthritis, the answer is not at all. A paper in the New England Journal of Medicine examined 180 patients 75 years old or younger, that had osteoarthritis of the knee, and reported at least moderate knee pain on average despite medical treatment.  The researchers randomized this individuals into three groups: Surgery Group #1 (Lavage): The…

Are you depressed?

That is the question that that clinicians often have to ask.  Depression certainly operates along a scale and it is often difficult to quantify either i) if a person is depressed or ii) how depressed they are. One option to assess patient depression is the PHQ-9.  The assessment asks patients nine questions regarding their mental…