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FDA guidance highlights inappropriate use of power morcellation, but concern about interpretation lingers
The agency’s “immediately in effect” guidance warns against the use of morcellators in hysterectomies or myomectomies in the majority of women due to the potential that they can spread undetected uterine sarcomas. Soon after the announcement, several large institutions — including Cleveland Clinic and Brigham and Women’s Hospital — stopped performing laparoscopic power morcellation. One leading manufacturer of the devices, Johnson & Johnson, pulled its products off the market. Yet, intense debate rages among surgeons and clinicians about whether FDA intended for power morcellation to be abandoned entirely, or if the agency intentionally left its guidance vague enough to allow surgeons to perform the procedures in patients who provide informed consent.
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Register for a Pre-PA Meeting!
Westchester County, New York
March 15 — 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.
New York Medical College Auditorium
Valhalla, Westchester County, New York
Total Registration Fee: $50
Note: You must be pre-registered to attend! Seating limited to first 100 registrants!

Click here to register!

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2015 AASPA CME Meeting & Surgical Update
We hope you will join us Oct. 1 – 4, 2015 at the Hilton Suites Chicago/Magnificent Mile, Chicago, Illinois, for our 15th Annual AASPA CME Meeting.

Join fellow surgical PAs, PA educators, PA students, pre-PA students and surgical industry leaders at the 15th Annual Surgical CME, preceding the Annual Clinical Congress of the American College of Surgeons!

This exciting, hands-on surgical meeting will be held at the fabulous Hilton Suites Chicago in the heart of incredible Chicago.

If you are looking for a qualified surgical PA, this is the ideal venue to fill that position. For industry exhibitors looking for "high touch face time" with surgical PAs, this is the ideal meeting for you!

Register now for the 2015 FCCS — Fundamental Critical Care Support
Management principles for the first 24 hours of critical care. Two-day course — 16 hours of CME and Certificate of Completion and card.
    Course Purpose
  • To better prepare the nonintensivist for the first 24 hours of management of the critically ill patient until transfer or appropriate critical care consultation can be arranged.
  • To assist the nonintensivist in dealing with sudden deterioration of the critically ill patient.
  • To prepare house staff for ICU coverage.
  • To prepare critical care practitioners to deal with acute deterioration in the critically ill patient.
Course will be held before the 15th Annual AASPA CME Meeting at the Hilton Suites Chicago/Magnificent Mile.

Register today!


New tools help surgeons access sensitive brain sites
The Columbus Dispatch
Blood clots and tumors deep within the brain are a challenge for surgeons, who risk life-changing collateral damage as they navigate through the delicate folds of the brain on the way to the problem spot. Historically, that often has meant leaving well enough alone — or in the case of cancer, offering radiation. But new tools are helping surgeons reach touchy territory with less chance that their patients will suffer lifelong repercussions.
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Physician burnout: Erosion of the soul
By Dorothy L. Tengler
We have long tended to view the medical profession as being glamorous — filled with status and prestige. However, the reality is that doctors seem to be struggling these days to feel satisfied and fulfilled, and many are turning to retirement. Is it stress or burnout? The difference between stress and burnout is the ability to recover during down time.
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Animal studies raise question about possible anesthesia risk in babies, toddlers
The Associated Press via U.S. News & World Report
Studies of baby animals have long suggested that going under anesthesia can have some harmful effects on a developing brain. Now some scientists want to find out whether those same drugs may pose subtle risks for human babies and toddlers. It's a balancing act: Doctors don't want to unnecessarily frighten parents whose tots need general anesthesia for crucial surgery. There's no clear evidence of side effects, such as learning or attention impairment, in youngsters.
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Efforts seek to sevelop systematic ways to objectively assess surgeons' skills
Surgical skills, which include both technical and nontechnical abilities, are often acquired through an apprenticeship-based system that hasn’t changed considerably over the past century. Although there are systematic processes to assess competencies during training, certification, and recertification of surgeons, they tend to be subjective, inconsistent, and focused primarily on nontechnical skills. This can lead to high variability in surgical performance across surgical specialties, potentially compromising patient care and introducing ethical quandaries.
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'Superdonors' poised to change the world of transplant surgery
By Alan Kelsky
All too often we hear heartbreaking stories of a child needing a kidney or liver transplant, but neither parents match. Transplanting an organ that is not closely matched to a recipient's blood type, antibodies and other key markers generally means that the receiver of the donated organ will immediately begin to reject it. The human immune system is a master at doing its primary job — rejecting anything in the body that it does not recognize.
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Frailty assessment test can accurately predict complications after major operation
Frailty has been used to predict how well a patient may recover from a major operation. Because frailty assessments are not routinely utilized in busy surgical practices, surgeons at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta have discovered that a short, approximately one-minute assessment can accurately determine how likely a patient is to have complications after an operation.
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Networking: A key component to referral diversification
By Jarod Carter
My efforts at networking events early after starting my cash practice played a big role in quickly filling my clinical schedule. It also has a lot to do with why my referral sources are so diverse. I can't stand hearing about colleagues who went out of business because they relied heavily on a physician who started a POPTS or sold their practice to a hospital/corporation with PT services. If you have a practice, or plan to have one in the future, there's no excuse for this.
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Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    ACOG issues guidelines for robot-assisted gynecologic surgery (Medscape (free login required))
2 diagnostic tests can help identify children who require surgical treatment for appendicitis (News-Medical)
PAs among highest paying in-demand jobs in America (Forbes)
New mesh technique may avoid unwanted fixation in inguinal hernias (General Surgery News)
Simple in-office surgical procedure to treat persistent sinusitis is safe and effective (HCP Live)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.


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Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Jessica Taylor, Senior Medical Editor, 469.420.2661   
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