A bi-weekly review of Barnes-Jewish Hospital, St. Louis Children's Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine media appearances.
IN THE NEWS August 11, 2015
As leaders in medicine, we are frequently featured in the media both locally and nationally. Here are highlights from the past two weeks:

Health Day
Common weight-loss surgery may lower tolerance for alcohol
A small study of women indicates that gastric bypass surgery changes how alcohol is metabolized after surgery and can speed its delivery into the bloodstream. Dr. Yanina Pepino found that those who had consumed the equivalent of two drinks in a short period of time had blood-alcohol contents similar to women who had consumed four drinks but had not had the operation. Other outlets: Reuters, News-Medical
Related WUSM news release

A new type of ADHD? Head injuries in children linked to long-term attention problems
A new study in the journal Pediatrics found that children who suffer an injury to the brain are likely to experience attention issues. Dr. Bradley L. Schlaggar, who was not involved in the study, commented. Other outlets: Washington Post, Business Insider

Health Day
Driving straight may be suitable road test in dementia
A recent study by occupational therapist Peggy P. Barco found that drivers with dementia have more difficulty driving straight and making left and right turns than controls. According to Barco, this finding is important because straight roads had not been considered a ‘high challenge’ in previous driving studies in people with dementia.

Huffington Post
Six reasons why birth control should be more accessible in the United States
In an article suggesting six reasons why birth control should be more accessible in the United States, Washington University’s CHOICE Project is referenced in reason No. 4. The CHOICE Project found that teen pregnancy and abortion rates plummet when barriers to contraceptive access are removed.
Related WUSM news release

Washington Post
‘I want hookah’: How Twitter feedback influences use
Research statistician Melissa Krauss commented on her research that found positive mentions about hookah use on Twitter may be adding to the misperception that hookah is somehow less harmful than cigarette smoking. It is not. The research was published in Preventing Chronic Disease, a journal of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Yahoo Finance
Biogen’s Alzheimer’s drug BIIB037 registers some success in tests
In an article highlighting the results of a phase 1 study, Washington University’s Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center and The Memory and Aging Project is mentioned as having developed the Clinical Dementia Rating to evaluate and stage the severity of dementia in 1979.

Consumer Affairs
More evidence of Alzheimer’s-diabetes link
In an article highlighting possible links between Alzheimer’s and diabetes, a WUSM study is referenced that found that elevated sugar levels in the blood, a hallmark of diabetes, can increase levels of amyloid beta, which shows up in brain plaques in Alzheimer’s patients.
Related WUSM news release

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
WashU grows young scientists

Washington University’s Young Scientist Program is designed to attract more women and minorities to science disciplines at colleges and universities and to help put them in the pipeline for graduate work. High school students are paid for their work and also get instruction on applying for college and financial aid to increase the likelihood they’ll finish a four-year degree or higher. Other outlets: Associated Press, KTRS-AM

KMOV-TV News 4
Mizzou officials issue health warning after high number of mumps cases
University of Missouri officials reported that seven suspected cases of mumps have been identified in the Columbia area. Dr. Ericka Hayes commented.

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
WashU sets sights on preventing human trafficking
Washington University’s school of social work and medicine are collaborating on a research project to identify local regions vulnerable to human trafficking, with the goal of preventing the practice. Dr. Rumi Price commented.

Sam Achilefu – Kudos for the Inventor
This editorial highlights Dr. Sam Achilefu’s recent St. Louis Award, which he received for an invention, that allows surgeons to distinguish malignant cells from healthy cells in real-time during surgery by wearing specially-designed glasses.
Related WUSM news release

New drug available to help control high cholesterol
Cardiologist Dr. David Brown explained that a new injectable drug has been approved for people with a hard-to-treat, inherited form of high cholesterol, as well as for those who are statin intolerant.

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Death of St. Louis County woman highlights risks of illegal buttocks injections
A woman recently died after an illegal cosmetic injection performed in a local hotel. Dr. Marissa Tenenbaum said that whenever a patient is injected with a foreign substance, there are risks of complications. “Whatever you’re injecting in your body can travel to different parts of your body, traveling through blood vessels, and cause a clotting-type phenomenon,” she said.

KSDK–TV ShowMe St. Louis
Making shots a little less painful
Drs. Kathleen Berchelmann, Kirstin Lee and Dehra Glueck suggested ways to make shots less painful for children.

KSDK-TV NewsChannel 5 (No link available)
The serious danger of ring avulsions
Jimmy Fallon quickly learned about the seriousness of ring avulsion injuries. Dr. Daniel Osei, explained how the injuries are treated.

Cardinal’s team members and wives visit St. Louis Children’s Hospital
Several St. Louis Cardinals baseball players and their significant others went room-to-room at SLCH recently, delivering signed teddy bears and taking pictures with patients and family members

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Jennings schools increase awareness of trauma’s impact on learning
The Jennings school district is partnering with WUSM and the Pediatric Residency program at SLCH to identify students whose negative behavior may have been affected by experiencing trauma, such as physical abuse, witnessing others in the family be abused, abandonment or divorce. Teachers hope to move away from suspending students for disruptive behavior and toward looking for the root cause of the actions. Dr. Sarah Garwood commented.

Common over-the-counter drug found to affect fertility
Dr. Emily Jungheim explained that NSAIDs could interfere with ovulation.

St. Louis Business Journal
BioGenerator among investors in health technology startup
In a story highlighting Epharmix, a startup that creates condition-specific digital interventions for medical care, WUSM physicians Drs. Will Ross, Gregory Polites, Rob Poirier, and Melvin Blanchard are mentioned as members of the advisory board.

WFMZ-TV  (Eastern Pa. and Western N.J.)
Health Beat: Personalized melanoma vaccine
Dr. Gerald Linette is working on a customizable vaccine to prevent melanoma recurrence. After sequencing a patient’s cancer genome, a vaccine is made to help the immune system identify the cancer cells and destroy them. “Cancer medicine is in the midst of the very dramatic shift away from a conventional set of toxic chemotherapies toward new treatments and approaches that can exploit genetic changes or alterations in the cancer genome,” Linette said.
Related WUSM news release

WTVM-TV   (Columbus, Ga.)
New breakthrough for Fragile X syndrome
Dr. Azad Bonni has identified a potential target for treatments for people who have a mild version of the mutation that causes fragile X syndrome.
Related WUSM news release

New study reveals Alzheimer’s risk in later years
A recent WUSM study revealed that the brain’s ability to clear the main ingredient of Alzheimer’s plaques slows with age.
Other outlets: Science News, Medical Xpress
Related WUSM news release

Health Affairs
Defeating the ZIP code health paradigm: Data, technology and collaboration are key
In an article highlighting health disparities in low-income zip codes, WUSM’s smartphone app Zuum is referenced. Zuum taps into Siteman’s Your Disease Risk suite of health risk assessment tools and offers users a summary reminder of their healthy habits, along with suggestions to improve health. 

Quick response critical to child’s good outcome
After a lumbar puncture in the Alton emergency room indicated meningitis, the St. Louis Children’s Hospital transport team rushed Cam Talley to Children’s for specialized treatment. The quick transport, largely credited to the transport team’s presence at Alton, helped set the child on the path to recovery.

News & Star   (U.K.)
Brave Cumbrian teen making good progress after life-changing operations
James Burns traveled to America to undergo selective dorsal rhizotomy with Dr. T.S. Park to remove spasticity in his legs caused by cerebral palsy. The procedure has drawn hundreds of families from multiple countries to SLCH.
Other outlets: Bay of Plenty Times, (New Zealand) Daily Post, (North Wales, U.K.) and North Shore Times (New Zealand)

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Judy Martin

Washington University
School of Medicine
Media Relations



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Laura High

Barnes-Jewish Hospital



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