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Issue:  March 2011 •  Archive  •  Subscribe •  Unsubscribe
In This Edition Featured Article Featured CE
•  Editor's Notebook
•  Counseling Pearls
•  It's the Law
•  Clinical Corner
•  Consult Your Pharmacist
•  Educational Spotlight
•  Quick Poll
       - E-prescribing
  Photo Childhood Obesity: The New Norm?
This growing epidemic is associated with numerous medical, psychosocial, and economic consequences that continue into adulthood.
  Photo The Prevention and Treatment of Whooping Cough
Pertussis continues to be poorly controlled despite national immunization programs.

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Editor's Notebook
A Crime Magnet

Retail pharmacies are targeted for theft because of their easy accessibility and vast inventory of narcotics.
Counseling Pearls
Photo Fetal Medication Management: Pharmacist’s Perspective

Drugs may be administered to pregnant patients to prevent or correct certain abnormalities in the fetus, including neural tube defects, congenital adrenal hyperplasia, hyper/hypothyroidism, methylmalonic academia, lung maturity induction, and fetal arrhythmias.
Photoweb exclusive Hypertensive Crises: Urgencies and Emergencies

A rapid and severe elevation in blood pressure is considered a hypertensive crisis. The presence or absence of target organ damage is the guiding factor in classification and treatment of this condition.
It's the Law
Beware Your Accounts

This month’s case reveals an embezzlement scheme involving a pharmacist’s trusted accountant.
Clinical Corner
Photo Treatment of Urinary Tract Infections in Children

UTIs affect approximately 2.8% of children every year in the U.S. and account for nearly 1.1 million office visits annually. Although many patients can be treated with oral antibiotics, infants should be evaluated for IV antibiotic therapy.
Photo An Overview of Kawasaki Disease

This acute, self-limiting form of vasculitis is the leading cause of acquired pediatric heart disease in North America. Approximately 85% of children diagnosed with the disorder are younger than 5 years, and the incidence is higher among children of Japanese descent.
Consult Your Pharmacist
Dosing Common Cold Products in Children: New Guidelines

Labeling for OTC cough and cold medications now states: "Do not use in children under 4 years of age."
Educational Spotlight
Clinical Updates on Bone-Sparing Therapies for Cancer-Related Bone Disease and Osteoporosis

Loss of bone mass, which leads to fracture and other complications, is increasingly recognized as a major health care dilemma.
Educating Community Pharmacists About Stroke Risks and Primary Stroke Prevention

The public must be advised of risk factors, preventive care, and the need for emergency care for this disease.
Review and Management of Common Nonmotor Symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease

Issues such as depression, cognitive impairment, GI disorders, and orthostatic hypotension are often overlooked.

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FDA Approves First New Lupus Therapy in Over 50 Years
Gaithersburg, MD— The FDA has approved Benlysta (belimumab) for the treatment of systemic lupus erythematosus. It is the first new drug indicated for the autoimmune disorder since corticosteroids and Plaquenil (hydroxychloroquine) were approved in 1955. Two clinical studies involving 1,684 patients with lupus demonstrated the safety and effectiveness of Benlysta, which is delivered via intravenous transfusion and targets B-lymphocyte stimulator (BLyS) protein. Patients treated with Benlysta and standard therapies experienced less disease activity and had a reduced likelihood of severe symptom flares than those who received a placebo and standard therapies.
Price of Drug for Preterm Birth Questioned
Bridgeton, MO— Makena (hydroxyprogesterone caproate) was recently approved by the FDA to help prevent premature birth in women who have had at least one previous preterm delivery. Originally praised by the March of Dimes for addressing the serious risk of infant complications at birth, the proposed price of the drug is now under scrutiny. Makena is not a new drug; it is a synthetic form of progesterone that has been available from compounding pharmacies for years at a cost of $10 to $20 per injection. Under market exclusivity, the drug will be marketed by a subsidiary of KV Pharmaceutical (Ther-Rx) at a cost of $1,500 per dose. Physicians, insurance companies, and the public are concerned how the significantly higher cost will affect the drug’s accessibility to low-income women. The drug company says that they are re-evaluating their pricing strategy and have "established a Patient Assistance Program with the goal of ensuring that every woman who is prescribed Makena will be able to access and afford it."
Study Shows Actos Prevents Onset of Type 2 Diabetes
San Antonio, TX— According to a study recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine, the widely used diabetes medication Actos (pioglitazone) has been shown to prevent the development of type 2 diabetes in 72% of high-risk individuals. The University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio and seven collaborating centers enrolled 602 participants in the ACT Now study and followed them for an average of 2.4 years. Senior author Ralph DeFronzo, MD, chief of the diabetes division at the university, said that the "reduction is the largest decrease in the conversion rate of prediabetes to diabetes that has ever been demonstrated by any intervention, be it diet, exercise, or medication."
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